6 Jan 2015

New Caledonia's Martin to face court

2:23 pm on 6 January 2015

A former New Caledonian president, Harold Martin, is to face trial in the criminal court for alleged favouritism in granting telecommunications contracts.

Harold Martin

Harold Martin Photo: AFP

The charges relate to irregularities in the awarding of contracts worth millions of dollars when Mr Martin was the board chairman of the publicly owned OPT telecommunications company.

The case goes back to 2010 when Mr Martin and other board members queried the tax relief on offer to a bidder for the new 3G network.

This led to investigations which established previously undisclosed links between Mr Martin and another bidder.

As a result, a police investigation was launched in late 2011 which has now led to the matter going to court.