The Italian Supreme court has determined it is a criminal offence to tell a man he has “no balls” because it insinuates that he is less of a man, The Daily Mail reports.
A lawyer known only as “Vittorio” made his case before the court, after his cousin, a justice of the peace known as “Alberto” accused him of lacking the male gonads during a heated exchange in a southern Italian courtroom. The case has been in Italian courts for years.
The court also found that because the insult was uttered in the workplace with third parties present it could be seen as damaging Vittorio’s reputation.
‘It refers not only to the target’s lack of virility, but also to his weakness of character, lack of determination, competence and coherence,’ the judge explained.
The judges will soon be ruling on a fine.The Daily Mail notes there has been no comment on which insults are a criminal offense when directed at women.