26 Apr 2011

Tahoeraa criticises Tahiti papers over phantom job trial reporting

1:56 pm on 26 April 2011

French Polynesia's opposition Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party has criticised the local press for the way it has been reporting the case underway in the criminal court in Papeete dealing with alleged phantom jobs set up in the 1990s.

The case centres on the former presidency run by the Tahoeraa leader, Gaston Flosse, who is alleged to have run an illicit network with public money to advance his party's cause in what is the biggest such trial in French legal history.

The Tahoeraa says the reporting has been partial, suggesting that the papers are motivated by wanting to sell as many copies as possible.

It says the Polynesian affairs office alleged to be central to the network predates Mr Flosse's presidency as it was set up in the days of the French governors.

The party also says the service provided proper employment contracts, adding that the case may amount to judicial harassment.