Paris court confirms jail for Tahiti's Vernaudon

7:19 am on 29 June 2020

France's highest court has upheld the prison sentences of two Tahitian men, including the former mayor of Mahina, Emile Vernaudon, for the abuse of public funds with the running of a local radio station.

Emile Vernaudon

Emile Vernaudon Photo: RNZ/ Walter Zweifel

Vernaudon and Joinville Pomare had earlier been given a one-year prison sentence in the criminal court, fined $US50,000 and banned from public office for five years.

An appeal in French Polynesia last year failed and now the Paris court made their sentence final.

Vernaudon was one of three men originally sentenced in the affair which dates back to the beginning of the last decade when they used the funds meant to be for the radio for personal use.

The sum misspent amounted to $US270,000 and triggered the demise of the station, which backed the policies of his Aia Api party.

Vernaudon's political career included serving two terms as member of the French National Assembly.