On Friday, in Milan, Italy a court convicted Silvio Berlusconi the former Premier for tax fraud. He was sentenced to 48 months behind bars. However, in Italy, court cases have to pass different appeal levels prior to the verdicts becoming final.
The former premier said he would immediately appeal the verdict. There is also the possibility that the second appeal could fail to finish within a mandated time period, which would then leave Berlusconi completely unscathed legally. Friday’s conviction was the first for the media mogul; other probes against the former premier and trials have ended with either his acquittal or had been thrown out due to the expiration of the statue of limitations.
In the beginning of the week, Berlusconi announced he would not be running for another term. The media mogul, who is 76 years old, was not in the Milan courtroom when his verdict was read. The case stems from his Mediaset empire.
Italy’s former premier is also being tried for allegedly paying a Moroccan 17-year old girl for sex, then influencing authorities to cover up the scandal in 2010. Prior to the trial he denied all the charges against him.
In October, while appearing at the trial, Berlusconi said he never had sex with the underage teen, never paid to have sex with any guest who came to his villa and denied there had been “bunga-bunga” parties held that had been sexual.
That expression comes from what he said he repeated on many occasions and that the media had picked up on.