Giovedì, 20 Settembre 2018

Bari prosecutor challenges Puglia governor's acquittal


Bari, March 15 - A prosecutor in the southern
Italian city Bari challenged the recent acquittal of Puglia
Governor Nichi Vendola, and ex-health board chief, Lea
Cosentino, on abuse of office charges, local newspapers reported
on Friday.
Vendola was cleared in late October, after prosecutors had
requested a 20-month prison sentence for him for the allegedly
unlawfully appointment of a local chief of surgeons, Paolo
Sardelli, at Bari's San Paolo hospital in 2010.
The acquittal stirred controversy when two prosecutors
working on the probe, Francesco Bretone and Desire' Digeronimo,
filed a complaint concerning an alleged friendship between the
governor's sister, Patrizia Vendola, and the judge who had
issued the acquittal.
Lea Cosentino, the former head of the health board in Bari
whom Vendola fired in 2010 after she was placed under house
arrest during a graft investigation, was also acquitted of abuse
of office.
Vendola had said the case against him was based solely on
testimony from Cosentino.
"She is accusing me due to her strong resentment," Vendola
said in October.
Vendola is leader of the leftwing Left Ecology Freedom
(SEL) party, and ran in the Italian parliamentary elections with
in an alliance wuth Pier Luigi Bersani, the leader of the main
centre-left Democratic Party (PD).
The centre-left coalition narrowly won the largest
percentage of the national vote in late February, but with
barely 1% more than the centre-right, and an impressive 25%
protest vote for the populist anti-establishment 5-Star
Movement, rule over the Italian parliament remains deadlocked.

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