8 May 2012

Gomes to appeal New Caledonia conviction

6:55 pm on 8 May 2012

A former New Caledonian president, Philippe Gomes, says he will appeal against his corruption conviction as a matter of honour.

He was given a five-month suspended jail term and fined 22,000 US dollars for the way he arranged a 1.3 million US dollar contract for his own company seven years ago when he was the president of the southern province.

Walter Zweifel reports.

"On his website, Philippe Gomes questions how the judicial process has worked and his conviction has come about."

He says for six years, two investigative judges questioned dozens of people linked to the business deal and concluded that there was no evidence of a crime.

He says how can it then be that two judges can see no crime but the criminal court convicts him after all.

Philippe Gomes wants to know where justice lies when there is such a contradictory assessment of the very same facts.