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Limits of free speech at stake in cartoonist's case: Lawyers ; Interest groups fear libel lawsuit win is a threat to democracy
[1 Edition]
Toronto Star - Toronto, Ont.
Author: Toughill, Kelly
Date: Jan 20, 2000
Start Page: 1
Section: NEWS
Abstract (Document Summary)

[Malcolm Ross]'s lawyer disagrees. He says those who are backing [Josh Beutel]'s right to free speech are the same ones who wanted to stifle Ross's free speech a few years ago. He says the case is about whether you can use words and drawings to hurt someone - and get away with it.

Beutel drew many cartoons about Ross during the protracted court battle, but the current case stems from a presentation Beutel gave to the New Brunswick Teachers' Association. He showed them many of his Ross cartoons, including one that had never been published. It compared Ross to Nazi Joseph Goebbels.

Ross sued Beutel for defamation and won. The court ruled that because Ross is not a Nazi, the cartoon was libelous.

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