French filmmaker Ruggia charged with sexual assault of a minor

According to actress Adele Haenel’s allegations, Christophe Ruggia first harassed her when she was 12.

christopher ruggia
Director Christophe Ruggia was charged based on allegations last year by actress Adele Haenel [Daniel Janin/AFP]

French film director Christophe Ruggia has been charged with sexual assault of a minor, Paris prosecutors said on Thursday, in a case involving an actress cast in one of his films nearly two decades ago.

Prosecutors also said Ruggia was placed under judicial supervision.

Jean-Pierre Versini-Campinchi, a lawyer for Ruggia, said the filmmaker denied any misconduct.

Actress Adele Haenel, who is now 31, has alleged that Ruggia assaulted and harassed her between 2001 and 2004 after she was cast in a Ruggia-directed movie called Les Diables, or The Devils.

According to Haenel’s allegations, published in French media outlet Mediapart in November last year, she was first harassed when she was 12 years old and the abuse continued until she was 15.

The Paris prosecutor’s office opened a preliminary probe in November into “sexual assault of a minor under 15 by a person of authority, and sexual harassment”.

The French film establishment has been rocked by rape accusations against directors Roman Polanski and Luc Besson.

Earlier this month, France‘s culture minister said that writer Gabriel Matzneff, accused of raping and seducing children, should be stripped of a special state pension.

Actress Adele Haenel poses for photographers on arrival at the London premiere of the film Portrait of a Lady on Fire [File: Grant Pollard/Invision/AP]
Source: News Agencies