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Quebec judge rules Justin Trudeau didn’t defame woman who heckled him at 2018 rally

Click to play video: 'Trudeau unapologetic after calling protester a racist' Trudeau unapologetic after calling protester a racist
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is unapologetic after he called a heckler a racist after the heckler raised questions about asylum seekers. But as David Akin reports, the response frustrates Trudeau's critics, who say he demonizes those who have legitimate questions about border security and irregular migration – Aug 20, 2018

A Quebec Superior Court judge has dismissed a defamation suit brought against Prime Minister Justin Trudeau by a woman who heckled him at a 2018 rally south of Montreal.

Justice Michele Monast wrote in a decision released Monday that Diane Blain’s lawsuit was ill-founded and abusive.

Read more: Trudeau unapologetic after telling heckler, ‘Your racism has no place here’

Blain had claimed Trudeau damaged her reputation when he called her comments “racist.”

Trudeau was delivering a speech in August 2018 in Ste-Anne-de-Sabrevois, Que., south of Montreal, when Blain interrupted him, making a comment about “illegal immigrants.”

The prime minister told Blain her comments were intolerant, and when she asked him about his tolerance for “pure Quebecers,” he said her comments were racist.

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Read more: Trudeau defends retort to heckler who targeted wife: ‘He went after my family’

Monast ruled that Trudeau’s actions were not unreasonable and that his statements weren’t defamatory.

Blain had argued in court that Trudeau’s words made her feel humiliated, shocked and ridiculed and that she received disparaging comments from others after the incident. But Monast said the public reaction against Blain following the encounter with the prime minister were the result of Blain’s actions, not what Trudeau said.

The judge also mentioned that Blain had used the encounter with Trudeau to promote her political views on social media and in interviews.

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