21 Jan 2011

French Polynesia's Tuheiava in disbarment appeal

4:05 pm on 21 January 2011

The court of appeal in Tahiti has heard the case of the French Polynesian senator, Richard Tuheiava, who was disbarred as a lawyer for two years.

Mr Tuheiava, who in 2008 became the youngest member of the French Senate, was struck off in 2009 after he was found to have taken money from clients without doing any work.

His lawyer has taken issue with the move by the professional body, saying the action against his client is flawed in form and substance.

According to Tahitipresse, the lawyer considered the investigation to have been biased.

When the affair became public, Mr Tuheiava told a news conference that he felt betrayed because the press knew of his disbarment before he had been advised of the decision.

The appeal court ruling is expected on February 17th.