Lunedì, 22 Ottobre 2018

Berlusconi 'anguished, worried' ahead of fraud verdict


(see related story)
Rome, July 31 - Ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi is
worried and anxious as he waits for the supreme Court of
Cassation's verdict on whether to uphold a conviction for tax
fraud, one of his staunchest allies said Wednesday.
"Berlusconi is going through this wait with anxiety and
worry," Daniela Santanché, an MP for Berlusconi's People of
Freedom (PdL) party, said on Italian radio.
"In part this is because of what his lawyers have told him
and in part it is because of what he already knows - that if he
were a normal citizen he would certainly have been acquitted".
The Cassation is expected to announce later on Wednesday or
on Thursday whether it has confirmed a four-year prison term
against Berlusconi, three years of which would not be effective
because of a 2006 amnesty.
State prosecutors on Tuesday requested that a five-year ban
on holding public office handed down at the previous two trials
be reduced to three years.
Berlusconi denies any wrongdoing and says the case is part
of a judicial "persecution" left-wing magistrates have directed
at him since the media magnate embarked on a political career 20
years ago.
Santanché said that she did not expect the Cassation to
overturn the conviction.
"This history of the last 20 years makes one think he will
be convicted," she said.
"A conviction would be a mutilation of democracy".
Franco Coppi, the leader of Berlusconi's defence team, said
the ex-premier would not go to the Cassation during Wednesday's
"He won't show, he has no reason to come here".

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