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Prosecutors want to jail Berlusconi for 5 years

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Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi

Italian prosecutors have demanded a court in Milan to give a five-year-long jail term to the country’s former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi for bribery.

They have accused Berlusconi of paying British lawyer, David Mills, USD 600,000 in bribe to lie about the ex-premier’s business interests.

“It is certain, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the defendant is guilty,” prosecutor Fabio De Pasquale told a Milan court on Wednesday.

He also said that Berlusconi’s defense was totally ‘based on false documents.’

Experts say the case has been dragged on for so long that the 75-year-old is less likely to go to prison even if found guilty. They say the former prime minister’s lawyers are likely to appeal a guilty verdict and the case would have to be dropped under Italy’s statute of limitations since the alleged crime was committed back in 1997.

Mills, who is the husband of former British cabinet minister, Tessa Jowell, was convicted of perjury in absentia in February 2009.

However, a year later, he was acquitted by the Italian Supreme Court under the statute of limitations.

Berlusconi will face another trial on March 15 on charges of leaking confidential information over a 2005 banking scandal as well as tax fraud and paying for sex.

He has claimed to be innocent in all the cases.


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