Fritch wins in Tahiti defamation case

3:41 pm on 4 May 2019

The appeal court in French Polynesia has upheld that the president Edouard Fritch was defamed.

Edouard Fritch addresses the UN decolonisation debate

Edouard Fritch Photo: supplied / French Polynesian Presidency

Mr Fritch had taken action against the assembly leader of the opposition Tahoeraa Huiraatira party Geffry Salmon for saying before last year's election that Mr Fritch's party had given out subsidies to buy votes.

In September, the criminal court fined Mr Salmon $US5,000 for making the claim at a news conference during the election campaign.

However, Mr Salmon appealed, questioning the legality of the process in serving the original summons, but the court has rejected this.

In February, the Tahoeraa leader Gaston Flosse was fined $US20,000 for making the same defamatory statements about Mr Fritch.

In the election a year ago, Mr Fritch's Tapura Huiraatira party won two thirds of all seats.

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