18 Jan 2013

Tahiti's Bouissou charged with passive corruption

11:18 am on 18 January 2013

The judicial authorities in French Polynesia have charged the Rautahi Party leader, Jean-Christophe Bouissou, with passive corruption.

Mr Bouissou was detained for two days for questioning over his links to a New Caledonian businessman, Bill Ravel, who is at the centre of a major corruption probe.

According to les Nouvelles de Tahiti, Mr Bouissou was given cash to support proposed law changes, which would have favoured Mr Ravel's business ventures.

Mr Bouissou has rejected claims of any wrongdoing, saying some of the money was sponsoring for his radio station.

Mr Ravel, who last year was jailed for two months as part of the probe, is also alleged to have given 160,000 US dollars in cash over four years to a leading unionist, Cyril Legayic, to contain strikes at his companies in Papeete.

The newspaper says more politicians are expected to be questioned, including the territory's president, Oscar Temaru.