India's First Wine, Food and Hospitality Website, INDIAN WINE ACADEMY, Specialists in Food & Wine Programmes. Food Importers in Ten Cities Across India. Publishers of delWine, India’s First Wine.
Skip Navigation Links
About Us
Indian Market
Wine & Health
Wine Events
Retail News
Contact Us
Skip Navigation Links
Wine Tourism
Book Review
Photo Gallery
Readers' Comments
Video Wall
Media Partners
Ask Wineguyindia
Wine & Food
Wine Guru
Gerry Dawes
Harvest Reports
Mumbai Reports
Advertise With Us
US Report on Indian Market Released
Top Ten Importers List 2015-16
On Facebook
On Twitter
Delhi Wine Club

Posted: Thusday, February 18 2010. 13:14

French Execs found guilty in Gallo Trial

The thirteen wine producers and traders on trial in the Gallo wine scandal were found guilty of having supplied a large quantity of fake Pinot Noir wines and six were handed a suspended prison sentence in a rare case in which the president of the criminal court said on Wednesday that the fraud had been committed.

Claude Courset of the Ducasse wine traders was sentenced to a six-month suspended prison sentence with a fine of €45,000 though the prosecutor had asked for a harsher prison sentence.

Five other people were sentenced to fines of between €3,000 and 6,000 and the remaining six for less. The trading firm of Limoux was ordered to pay €180,000 in penalties, according to a news agency.

The order is likely to be appealed against.

The 13 defendants, including executives from wine estates, cooperatives, a broker, wine merchant Ducasse and conglomerate Sieur d'Arques, were accused of selling 18 million bottles of fake Pinot Noir to Gallo of California. The wine was sold under Gallo's popular "Red Bicyclette" Pinot Noir label though made from far less expensive grape varieties.

At an earlier court hearing on January 25, public prosecutor Francis Battut asked for tough sentences, including heavy fines, suspended jail sentences and up to 12 months in jail for one of the defendants.

All but two senior executives had admitted their guilt.

Scandal reportedly erupted in March 2008 when France's fraud squad, the General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF), became suspicious during an audit at Ducasse. He had been buying Pinot Noir at €58 per hL when the official market price was €97 and generic local grape varieties were selling for €45 hL. Also, the volume of wine from the Pinot Noir grape being sold to Gallo far exceeded the possible supply from the region.

On the basis of a year-long judicial investigation, the defendants were accused of substituting wine made from less expensive local grape varieties for the Pinot Noir, which is popular on the American market.

"What worries me the most for my country are the economic consequences," prosecutor Battut said in a telephone interview with AFP, the French news agency." If Americans lose confidence in French wine production, particularly the Languedoc region, which is already going through a serious crisis, the consequences could be terrible."

DelWine had reported the case in an erlier issue; the readers had shown a keen interest.



Subhash Arora Says:

We never implied that Merlot was inferior variety. It is the gullible  and fickle minded Americans who need to be shown a 2-hour movie
and change opinion for life, about a grapel, still predominant as a varietal and of course in the Bordaux blends on both the banks. But that is how media can brain wash you! I wonder whatever happened to the pro-Merlot movie that was being produced , though. But the fact remains that Merlot does sell at lower prices in South of France- we quoted the prices given in the press only.
Subhash Arora 

Posted @ February 23, 2010 15:52


Avtar Sandhu Says:

In my previous comment I had mentioned that Merlot is a superior garpe. The movie Sideways had created an incorrect perception about Pinot Noir. Less expensive does not mean inferior. Please change your attitude on this.

Posted @ February 23, 2010 15:50


Want to Comment ?
Please enter your comments in the space provided below. If there is a problem, please write directly to Thank you.

Generate a new image

Type letters from the image:

Please note that it may take some time to get your comment published...Editor

Wine In India, Indian Wine, International Wine, Asian Wine Academy, Beer, Champagne, World Wine Academy, World Wine, World Wines, Retail, Hotel


Copyright©indianwineacademy, 2003-2020 |All Rights Reserved
Developed & Designed by Sadilak SoftNet