Yahoo! sued over Nazi memorabilia auction site

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PARIS--A leading French anti-racism organization is suing Internet portal giant Yahoo! in a bid to end auctions of Nazi memorabilia and artifacts conducted in the U.S. but accessible from France.

The International League Against Racism and Anti-Semitism (LICRA) has filed suit in a Paris court to block or ban the auctions in France, where stringent laws ban the sale or display of merchandise that incites racism.

LICRA claims more than 1,000 Nazi items -- including flags, pic-tures and coins -- are for sale at the auction site. The items are not, however, offered in auction databases accessible from Yahoo!'s French-language site.

LICRA has called on Yahoo! to make the auctions inaccessible to French Web surfers and has asked a French judge to fine the Internet giant $100,000 per day for failure to comply.

A Yahoo! spokeswoman declined to comment on the pending lawsuit, scheduled for a Paris court May 15.

Copyright April 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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