Bob Dylan is being probed in relation to alleged racist comments after a community organisation raised a lawsuit against him.
The CRICCF, which looks after the interests of Croatians living in France, have named Dylan in their legal action alongside the French edition of Rolling Stone.
They say quotes attributed to him, which were published in September 2012, amount to incitement of racial hatred and break national laws – and as a result he’s been placed under judicial investigation.
In the interview Dylan is quoted as making a reference to the war of independence fought between Croatian and Serb forces in the 1990s: “If you got a slave master of [Ku Klux] Klan in your blood, blacks can sense that. That stuff lingers to this day. Just like Jews can sense Nazi blood and the Serbs can sense Croatian blood.”
The CRICCF raised the complaint last November, objecting to the comparison between the KKK, Nazis and Croatians. A spokesman said: “We have nothing against Rolling Stone or Bob Dylan – but you cannot equate Croatian [war] criminals with all Croats.”
French authorities have now placed the singer-songwriter under judicial investigation. But the CRICCF say all they want is an apology.
Dylan was awarded the Legion d’Honneur in Paris last month.