The organiser of a prestigious art show that took place over several years in Monaco has been found accused of failing to pay a large bill at the Fairmont Hotel.

Johnessco Rodriguez had failed to pay a bill of 10,444 euros dating to an event held at the hotel in 2016, Monaco’s Criminal Court was told. He had cancelled the payment before it left his bank, according to the prosecutor, who asked for a prison term and a fine of 15,000 to 20,000 euros, which might be suspended he told the court.

On the other hand, while Mr Rodriguez was himself not present at the hearing, his defence lawyer was. He described at as a simple error or an oversight, since the cost of organising the annual event, held every year since 2010, was in the region of 260,000 euros, the inference being that 10,444 euros was a mere detail.

Mr Rodriguez was found guilty of the offence and ordered to pay a fine of 10,000 euros. The Art Monaco event was due to be held again in 2020, but cancelled due to the coronavirus crisis.