Fund abuse trial of Tahiti president deferred until June

3:38 pm on 31 October 2018

Today's trial of French Polynesia's president Edouard Fritch for alleged abuse of public funds has been deferred until June next year.

Edouard Fritch

Edouard Fritch Photo: Supplied/ Présidence de la Polynésie française

However, the criminal court decided to defer the case because too many resources had been tied with the trial of those implicated in the fatal Air Moorea crash.

Mr Fritch was due to be tried with his predecessor Gaston Flosse for their actions as mayors of the town of Pirae.

They are alleged to have arranged for the town administration to pay for the water supply to the upmarket Erima neighbourhood, where Flosse lived.

The charges followed a 2011 auditor's report which found that Flosse set up the free supply which Mr Fritch continued, with both of them billing the town.

Two more prominent residents have also been charged with hooking up to the illicit water supply scheme.

The case is Mr Fritch's first this term, after getting two corruption convictions in the previous term.

Gaston Flosse has been barred from public office since 2014 because of corruption convictions.

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