9 Oct 2018

Former New Caledonia president in appeal court

3:40 pm on 9 October 2018

New Caledonia's Appellate Court has heard an appeal by a former president, Harold Martin, who was last year given a suspended two-month prison sentence over a conflict of interest in a land sale.

He was also fined $US50,000 and declared ineligible to hold public office for two years.

His lawyer wants the case to be thrown out.

A verdict is expected on 13 November.

Five years ago, judges had put Martin under formal investigation over the 2008 rezoning of land, which he and his siblings had sold in Paita a year earlier.

The rezoning to clear the land for a commercial development was approved by Martin in his capacity as mayor of Paita.

Earlier, he said it was his right to sell the land, which had been in the family since 1860.