Former Fiji Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase has been jailed for a year after being found guilty of nine corruption-linked charges.
Qarase, who held the title of Prime Minister in Fiji from 2000-2006, appeared in the High Court in Suva this morning for sentencing.
Judge Justice Priyantha Fernando convicted Qarase on Tuesday of six charges of abuse of office and three charges of discharge of duty with respect to a property in which he had a private interest.
Foreign Minister Murray McCully says New Zealand has been watching developments carefully.
"This is an important period which will give a strong indication as to whether elections in 2014 will be free and fair," McCully said.
"A free and independent judiciary is obviously an important element in that process. Now the trial has concluded we will follow up with Fiji authorities to seek assurances that due process has been followed."
The charges, which were laid by the current Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, relate to Qarase's directorship of Fiji Holdings.
Soon after seizing power in Fiji, Bainimarama set up the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption. The charges against Qarase date back to the early 1990s.
He was also accused of putting the interests of his family and home village before the public.
Police were on standby in Suva for the sentencing.