Berlusconi to stand trial for bribing senator

Former Italian PM is charged of bribing senator in attempt to bring down Romano Prodi government in 2006.

    Berlusconi to stand trial for bribing senator
    Berlusconi has denied any wrongdoing and is confident of the outcome of the Feb. 2014 preliminary hearing [Reuters]

    Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been indicted on a political corruption charge linked to the 2008 collapse of Romano Prodi's government, a defence lawyer in the case has said.

    Naples prosecutors accused Berlusconi on Wednesday of bribing a former senator to change sides as part of an attempt to bring down the government of former Prime Minister Prodi in 2006.

    The senator, Sergio De Gregorio, admitted he received three million euros from Berlusconi. He was sentenced to 20 months in jail after plea bargaining.

    De Gregorio, in a telephone interview with local TV station, Sky, said he had told prosecutors what he knew about the alleged payment and added that he later expressed his regrets to Prodi.

    In collaborating with prosecutors, in "telling the truth, I lifted a weight'' off my conscience, De Gregorio said.

    Berlusconi has denied any wrongdoing and his lawyer Michele Cerabona said he was confident of the outcome of a preliminary hearing expected on February 11 next year.

    Legal headaches

    The case adds to a long list of legal headaches facing the billionaire media tycoon. Earlier this month, an appeals court in Milan handed Berlusconi a two-year political ban as part of his punishment for a tax fraud conviction.

    Berlisconi also risks a seven-year prison sentence if appeals' courts uphold a conviction for having paid a minor for sex and forcing officials to cover it up.

    Berlusconi has blamed his many judicial woes on magistrates he contends side with the political left.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.