14 Feb 2013

Tahiti's French senator Tuheiava cleared of forgery charges

2:07 pm on 14 February 2013

French Polynesia's pro-independence member of the French Senate says he has been advised that there is no case to answer in relation to forgery charges.

Richard Tuheiava was disbarred in Tahiti after it was alleged that he had failed in his duties as a lawyer which he was before he entered politics in 2008.

He says there is no criminal case and that he has also decided to quit the Papeete bar to concentrate on politics.

Last year, Mr Tuheiava claimed the case against him was rigged and aimed at discrediting him because he had become too embarrassing for the French state.

He said the judiciary was acting on orders of the Sarkozy presidency to charge him as a lawyer while targetting him as a politician.

Mr Tuheiava has been the right-hand of the French Polynesian president in his campaign to reinscribe the territory on the UN decolonisation list.