Published 3:35 PM, November 13, 2019
Updated 3:35 PM, November 13, 2019
GUY LALIBERTE. The Cirque du Soleil founder speaks onstage at an event in Hollywood, California in 2011. The entrepreneur has recently been detained for ‘growing cannabis.’ Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Cirque du Soleil/AFP
PAPEETE, France – The billionaire founder of global acrobatic troupe Cirque du Soleil, Guy Laliberte, has been detained on charges of growing cannabis on his private island in the South Pacific, authorities said.
The Canadian entrepreneur was arrested after getting off his plane in French Polynesia and was due to appear before a judge later on Wednesday, November 13, prosecutors and reports said.
In a statement, his company, Lune Rouge, said Laliberte uses cannabis for “medical” and “strictly personal” purposes and denied that he was growing the drug on his private island of Nukutepipi for commercial gain.
“Guy Laliberte completely dissociates himself from any rumor implicating him… in the sale or traffic of drugs,” it said.
According to local television station Polynesie Premiere, police had questioned one of Laliberte’s associates some weeks ago on suspicion of possessing drugs and found images of marijuana plantations on their mobile phone. – Rappler.com