Silvio Berlusconi: Italian government wants damages
Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been charged with corruption and bribing witnesses. His old office says Berlusconi’s behavior damaged Italy’s image – and is demanding more than 10 million euros in compensation.
(dpa) In the corruption process surrounding parties with underage women, the prime minister’s office wants damages from former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. Lawyer Gabriella Vanadia, who represents the Presidium of the Council of Ministers in Rome as a joint plaintiff in the “Bunga-Bunga-Party” proceedings, has asked the Milan court to sentence the 85-year-old and 27 other defendants to 10 euros in damages .5 million euros. Berlusconi’s behavior brought Italy into “worldwide discredit”, as Vanadia explained.
The long-time politician and entrepreneur is accused of corruption and bribery of witnesses. In previous trials surrounding the parties, he had been acquitted of abuse of office and promoting underage prostitution for lack of evidence. In their plea on Wednesday, the public prosecutor’s office in Milan called for a six-year prison sentence for the former prime minister.
Berlusconi protests his innocence, his lawyer is convinced of an acquittal. A verdict is expected in the fall. Representatives of his party Forza Italia and the leaders of the right-wing parties Lega and Fratelli d’Italia expressed their solidarity with Berlusconi.
According to observers, the motion by the presidency of the Council of Ministers is likely to hit Berlusconi the hardest. On the one hand, this was his office in each of his four terms of office. And the Forza Italia boss also tried to position himself as a brave and reliable supporter of Prime Minister Mario Draghi. Lawyer Vanadia made it clear, however, that Berlusconi’s escapades, whether prosecuted or not, have brought Italy into disrepute.