2 May 2014

Fiji's Chaudhry sentenced today

4:51 am on 2 May 2014

Fiji's High Court will today sentence the Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry, who was convicted in April of breaching the Foreign Exchange Act.

The charge carries a possible jail term of up to two years and fines of up to 4 million US dollars.

Don Wiseman has more.

"In a development expected to end Chaudhry's political career he was convicted in relation to 1.4 million US dollars he had invested offshore without Reserve Bank approval. On Wednesday his lawyers unsuccessfully sought to have the conviction quashed. Yesterday in mitigation those speaking in his favour included Ratu Epeli Ganilau, who has headed the Defence Force and, like Mr Chaudhry, been a minister in the Bainimarama administration. Others who spoke for him were a former education minister, Taufa Vakatale, who was also part of the Yash Ghai Constitution Commission, and prominent Catholic priest and social activist, Father Kevin Barr. The decision by Justice Paul Madigan is to be made public early this afternoon."