Author Topic: Judges prepare Italy's PM Berlusconi verdict  (Read 51 times)

Don Rizzle

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Judges prepare Italy's PM Berlusconi verdict
« on: December 10, 2004, 05:02:21 AM »
Judges prepare Berlusconi verdict
Italy is awaiting the verdict in the long-running corruption trial of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Three judges in Milan are deliberating and the verdict may be announced later on Friday.

State prosecutors have demanded an eight-year jail term for Mr Berlusconi, who is accused of bribing judges in the 1980s to favour his business interests.

Mr Berlusconi, a billionaire, has vowed not to resign, and experts say the case could easily involve lengthy appeals.

The BBC's Tamsin Smith, in Rome, says Mr Berlusconi was smiling, talkative and decidedly upbeat at a book launch on Thursday, showing no signs of concern.

"I deserve a medal for enduring this trial," he told reporters.

Mr Berlusconi, Italy's first serving prime minister to be tried in a criminal court, denies the charges.

Legal wrangling

Italy's tortuous justice system means the appeal process often results in cases being shelved, our reporter says.

But if Mr Berlusconi fails to get an acquittal, calls for him to step down are likely to multiply, causing a political storm on the domestic and international fronts, she says.

He says he is the victim of a politically-motivated judicial witch-hunt.

Summing up his defence, one of Mr Berlusconi's lawyers warned handing down a guilty verdict would irrevocably tarnish the country's name.

Mr Berlusconi, who has only attended court three times during the four-year legal process, does not face an immediate risk of jail as, under Italian law, two appeals are allowed before a sentence must be served.

The trial was suspended last summer after parliament passed a controversial law giving Mr Berlusconi immunity from prosecution.

The constitutional court later overturned the ruling.


Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/world/europe/4084717.stm

iraq would just get annexed by iran


That would be a great solution.  If Iran and the majority of Iraqi's are pleased with it, then why shouldn't they do it?
 

tommyilromano

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Don Rizzle

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Re: Judges prepare Italy's PM Berlusconi verdict
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2004, 12:01:17 PM »
theres more trouble for him now


Berlusconi ally handed jail term
A friend and adviser of Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been found guilty of association with the Mafia after a seven-year trial.
Marcello Dell'Utri, a senator and founder-member of Mr Berlusconi's Forza Italia party, was sentenced to nine years in prison by a court in Sicily.

Dell'Utri, who was also banned from office, is expected to appeal.

The verdict comes a day after another Italian court rejected separate charges brought against Mr Berlusconi.

He had been accused of bribing judges in the 1980s to favour his business interests.

The BBC's David Willey in Rome says Mr Berlusconi's celebrations have been cut short by the result of the Dell'Utri case, which he says is a serious political setback for the prime minister.

Mafia testimonies

The prosecution said Dell'Utri had acted as a link between organised crime in Sicily and Italy's business and political elite.

The senator's co-accused, Gaetano Cina, was sentenced to seven years' jail.

Mr Berlusconi had been called as a witness, but declined to give evidence as he was entitled to under Italian criminal procedure.

Evidence of Dell'Utri's complicity in money-laundering and contact with notorious Mafia bosses was given to the court by over 40 former Mafia members.

However, our correspondent says Dell'Utri will not go to jail.

Under Italy's slow-moving justice system he will not have to serve his sentence until this has been confirmed by two courts of appeal, which could take many more years, our correspondent notes.

The verdict comes days after police staged a massive operation in the Italian city of Naples, where a turf war between rival mafia gangs has claimed scores of lives.

More than 50 people were reportedly arrested in the offensive, which Italian Interior Minister Giuseppe Pisanu hailed as a "real blow" to the local mafia, known as the Camorra.


Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/world/europe/4087861.stm

iraq would just get annexed by iran


That would be a great solution.  If Iran and the majority of Iraqi's are pleased with it, then why shouldn't they do it?