PNG MP Sentenced To 9 Years Hard Labor For Misappropriation

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Tiensten ordered to repay $3.8 million

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, March 29, 2014) – A Papua New Guinea MP, Paul Tiensten, has been sentenced to 9 years in prison with hard labour - one year less than the maximum sentence.

The Pomio MP has also been ordered to repay a sum of 3-point-8 million US dollars that he was found guilty of misappropriating.

EMTV reports the National Court judge, Justice Gibbs Salika said the case stood alone with over 10 million kina being misapplied, whereas other MPs - who served between 1 and 5 years in jail - only misapplied less than 150 thousand kina.

The amount was allegedly paid to Travel Air, an airline owned by Kokopo businessman, Eremas Wartoto, during Tiensten's time as Minister for National Planning and Monitoring.

This was one of the first cases investigated by the anti-corruption Task Force Sweep after it was established by the Government in August 2011.

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