15 Dec 2012

Charges expected over French Polynesia's Couraud disappearance

10:22 am on 15 December 2012

There is an expectation in French Polynesia that charges could be laid within weeks over the disappearance of a journalist, Jean-Pascal Couraud, who vanished exactly 15 years ago.

A police investigation was launched eight years ago after a former spy claimed that the journalist had been kidnapped and drowned off Tahiti by security staff working on behalf of the then president, Gaston Flosse.

The journalist's brother, Philippe Couraud, says the probe was hampered until the end of the Chirac presidency, with findings now suggesting he died as a result of a politically motivated assassination.

"There are grave matching clues. We think two or three people could be indicted and one or two months."

Philippe Couraud.

The former spy who made the murder claim is still appealing his conviction for slander which he was given within days of going public in 2004.