7 Aug 2009

Haddad admits to French Polynesia funding claims

4:20 pm on 7 August 2009

A jailed French advertising executive, Hubert Haddad, has admitted giving money which was forwarded to the French Polynesian Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party.

Mr Haddad has been accused of paying nearly two million US dollars in kickbacks to the Tahoeraa leader, Gaston Flosse, for getting public sector contracts.

He has been held in jail in Tahiti since June, and was heard by two examining magistrates for about eight hours this week.

Les Nouvelles de Tahiti says Mr Haddad also admitted some of the money had passed through Mr Flosse's personal secretary, Melba Ortas.

A confrontation is expected to take place tomorrow between Mrs Ortas and Mr Haddad's former right-hand man Michel Yonker, from whom she is suspected to have received the money.