Italy Supreme Court upholds Berlusconi jail sentence!

on . Posted in Patriot News Network

ROME, Italy (PNN) - August 1, 2013 - Italy's Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a jail sentence against Silvio Berlusconi for tax fraud in a devastating blow to the four-times prime minister that could throw the country's fragile coalition government into crisis.

The former cruise ship crooner is Italy's most colorful and scandal-prone figure but it was his first definitive conviction in up to 30 court cases on charges ranging from fraud and corruption to having sex with an underage prostitute.

After a three-day hearing, the five judges of the Supreme Court rejected Berlusconi's final appeal against a verdict handed down by two lower courts, which sentenced the media mogul to four years in jail - commuted to one year under an amnesty.

But the top judges ordered a review by a Milan court of the second part of his sentence, a five-year ban from public office. This will enable him to remain a senator and leader of his center-right People of Freedom Party (PDL) for the moment.

In a sober video message after the verdict, Berlusconi proclaimed his total innocence and launched a bitter attack on magistrates he said had hounded him for 20 years and become an undemocratic rival power to the state.

Looking shaken, he vowed to press ahead in politics with the refoundation of his original political party, Forza Italia, through the mobilization of young people, and a reform of the justice system. But he acknowledged that he had "arrived almost at the end of my working life."

Berlusconi, Italy's longest serving premier, had previously said the government must not fall, whatever the verdict.

The 76-year-old billionaire, who has dominated politics for 20 years and been prime minister four times, was convicted for inflating the price paid for television rights by his Mediaset media empire and skimming off part of the money to create slush funds.

Because of his age he is likely to serve the sentence either through community service or under house arrest.

He accuses leftist magistrates of relentlessly trying to remove him from politics since he stormed onto the scene in 1994 after a corruption scandal wiped out the old order.

The verdict could not only mark the twilight of his long career but could also destabilize the three-month-old government of Prime Minister Enrico Letta and potentially send tremors across the euro zone.

The bloc's third-largest economy is ruled by a fractious coalition of Letta's center-left Democratic Party (PD) and Berlusconi's PDL.

President Giorgio Napolitano, architect of Letta's coalition after a two month hiatus following inconclusive elections in February, quickly issued a statement urging calm and national cohesion. He called for trust and respect for the judiciary.

Letta echoed his comments, calling for calm and saying the nation's interests must come before those of individuals.

Eulogies

Eulogy for an Angel
1992-Dec. 20, 2005

Freedom
2003-2018

Freedom sm

My Father
1918-2010

brents dad

Dr. Stan Dale
1929-2007

stan dale

A. Solzhenitsyn
1918-2008

solzhenitsyn

Patrick McGoohan
1928-2009

mcgoohan

Joseph A. Stack
1956-2010

Bill Walsh
1931-2007

Walter Cronkite
1916-2009

Eustace Mullins
1923-2010

Paul Harvey
1918-2009

Don Harkins
1963-2009

Joan Veon
1949-2010

David Nolan
1943-2010

Derry Brownfield
1932-2011

Leroy Schweitzer
1938-2011

Vaclav Havel
1936-2011

Andrew Breitbart
1969-2012

Dick Clark
1929-2012

Bob Chapman
1935-2012

Ray Bradbury
1920-2012

Tommy Cryer
1949-2012

Andy Griffith
1926-2012

Phyllis Diller
1917-2012

Larry Dever
1926-2012

Brian J. Chapman
1975-2012

Annette Funnicello
1942-2012

Margaret Thatcher
1925-2012

Richie Havens
1941-2013

Jack McLamb
1944-2014

James Traficant
1941-2014

jim traficant

Dr. Stan Monteith
1929-2014

stan montieth

Leonard Nimoy
1931-2015

Leonard Nimoy

Stan Solomon
1944-2015

Stan Solomon

B. B. King
1926-2015

BB King

Irwin Schiff
1928-2015

Irwin Schiff

DAVID BOWIE
1947-2016

David Bowie

Muhammad Ali
1942-2016

Muhammed Ali

GENE WILDER
1933-2016

gene wilder

phyllis schlafly
1924-2016

phylis schafly

John Glenn
1921-2016

John Glenn

Charles Weisman
1954-2016

Charles Weisman

Carrie Fisher
1956-2016

Carrie Fisher

Debbie Reynolds
1932-2016

Debbie Reynolds

Roger Moore
1917-2017

Roger Moore

Adam West
1928-2017

Adam West

JERRY LEWIS
1926-2017

jerry lewis

HUGH HEFNER
1926-2017

Hugh Hefner

PROF. STEPHEN HAWKING
1942-2018

Hugh Hefner 

ART BELL
1945-2018

Art Bell

DWIGHT CLARK
1947-2018

dwight clark

CARL MILLER
1952-2017

Carl Miller

HARLAN ELLISON
1934-2018

Harlan Ellison

STAN LEE
1922-2018

stan lee