19 Oct 2012

Tahiti's Tuheiava fails in disbarment appeal

2:00 pm on 19 October 2012

France's highest court has thrown out an appeal by French Polynesia's pro-independence member of the French Senate who challenged being disbarred for two years.

Although Richard Tuheiava has been reinstated in Tahiti, he contested the action taken against him to the top court in Paris.

In March, he faced a range of charges, including forgery, after it was alleged that he had failed in his duties as a lawyer which he was before he entered politics in 2008.

Mr Tuheiava had denied the accusations against him, saying he was the victim of a plot to sideline him during this year's presidential and legislative elections.

When he was charged he said 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.