25 Jul 2013

Tahiti's Flosse wants OPT appeal trial relocated

7:30 pm on 25 July 2013

French Polynesia's president, Gaston Flosse, has launched a fresh bid to have his appeal against a corruption conviction heard outside the territory.

In January, he was given a five-year prison sentence for corruption and fined 110,000 US dollars for the corrupt deals involving French Polynesia's OPT telecommunications company.

The case centred on a French advertising executive Hubert Haddad who paid about two million US dollars in kickbacks over 12 years to Gaston Flosse and his political party to get public sector contracts.

A local newspaper says a bid last week to move the appeal case out of Tahiti was rejected.

Last year, he failed to have another corruption appeal case moved out of the territory and in February he was given a jail sentence and a fine.

That case is before France's highest court and should he lose it, he would have to quit all political offices.