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Asia-pacific

Former president Flosse in detention facing new corruption charges

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2009-12-03

After already spending time in jail on embezzlement allegations, former French Polynesia president Gaston Flosse, an ally of former French president Jacques Chirac, was again placed in provisional detention on Wednesday on fresh corruption charges.


AFP - Former French Polynesia president Gaston Flosse was placed in provisional detention again on Wednesday after new corruption charges were laid against him including for complicity in destroying evidence.
  
Flosse, 78, an ally of former French president Jacques Chirac, was released last week following a decision by a special bail judge after spending 16 days in jail on embezzlement allegations.
  
However prosecutors filed the new charges against the senator for French Polynesia and were able to convince a panel of judges that he should be held pending the investigation.
  
"This provisional detention will allow the investigation to take its course: witness confrontations between December 3 and 11, filing requests for assistance, other hearings and detention" of other suspects, Prosecutor Jose Thorel told AFP.
  
Requests for assistance are likely to be filed to financial investigators and the Papeete police.
  
Flosse was taken to the Nuutania penitentiary near Papeete.
  
In September, police searched the senator's home and his Tahoera's Huiraatira party headquarters.
  
Flosse, a member of President Nicolas Sarkozy's right-wing majority in the Senate, served four terms as head of the French Pacific territory between 1984 and 2008.
  
He was questioned in July by financial investigators in Paris over the alleged embezzlement of some 1.5 million euros (2.26 million dollars) from the Polynesian post and telecoms office.
  
The French Senate has partially lifted Flosse's immunity to allow investigations to be conducted against him.
  
The probe against Flosse was launched after a damning report by Polynesia's public finance watchdog, the CTC, on the use of state funds and award of contracts during his period in office.

Date created : 2009-12-03

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