Almost four years ago, Piero Ricca accused Silvio Berlusconi of being a buffoon as the then-PM left a courtroom during one of his many trials for corruption and generally illicit business activities. Ricca, a freelance journalist and the son of a magistrate, was fined €500. The Supreme court subsequently annulled the fine, partly on the grounds that the fact that the insult was used in the corridors of a tribunal was legally irrelevant, and remarking that such a site was, in fact, particularly suitable for a judgement of this type, bearing as it did on Berlusconi's respect, or lack of it, for the law.
Even without the annulment, Ricca would have got off lightly compared to the unfortunate Mr Oliver Jufer, a long-time Dutch resident in Thailand, who stands to serve ten years for defacing an image of the Thai monarch. For more details click here.
Holiday in Phuket anyone? I'll bring the paint.