Tahiti MP in court for abusing public funds

1:10 pm on 29 April 2016

A French Polynesian member of the French National Assembly has appeared in Tahiti's criminal court on charges of abusing public funds.

Jean-Paul Tuaiva is alleged to have given about 200,000 US dollars in subsidies from his parliamentary attribution to an association in Tahiti, which then disbursed the money back to him.

The prosecution has asked for a two-year suspended prison sentence, a $US20,000 dollar fine and for him to be deprived of his civic rights for five years.

The head of the association risks being jailed for a year.

In court, Mr Tuaiva said he would quit politics at the end of his term.

He was elected four years ago as one of three French Polynesian politicians from the Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party of Gaston Flosse.

In Paris, the three joined the Union of Democrats and Independents, shunning the Tahoeraa's erstwhile partners, the UMP.

The French National Assembly

The French National Assembly Photo: AFP