London Daily

Focus on the big picture.
Wednesday, Dec 06, 2023

Italy's Berlusconi acquitted in starlet bribery trial

Italy's Berlusconi acquitted in starlet bribery trial

An Italian court on Wednesday acquitted billionaire former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi of bribing witnesses to lie about his notorious "bunga bunga" parties, bringing closure to a years-long sex scandal.
The media mogul, 86, stood accused of paying young starlets and others for "silence and lies" about his notoriously hedonistic soirees, which he has always insisted were elegant dinners.

Berlusconi, whose Forza Italia party is part of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's governing coalition, has long been dogged by legal battles, most of which he has won.

The senator, who did not attend Wednesday's hearing in Milan, had already been acquitted in two other related cases of alleged bribery, in Siena in 2021 and Rome in 2022.

His lawyer Federico Cecconi said he was "enormously pleased", although prosecutors could still appeal.

A guilty verdict would have been embarrassing for the government, and Berlusconi's political allies were quick to congratulate him.

Meloni said the decision "puts an end to a long judicial affair that also had important repercussions on Italian political and institutional life".

The verdict is the culmination of a legal battle which began in 2010 when Berlusconi -- then prime minister -- was accused of abusing his power to protect a young Moroccan nightclub dancer, Karima El-Mahroug.

Known by her stage name "Ruby the Heart Stealer", she had been detained by police for theft, but was released after Berlusconi claimed she was the niece of then Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

Berlusconi was charged with paying for sex with Ruby in 2010 when she was just 17.

Hush money

He was initially found guilty, but acquitted in 2014 after an appeals court found there was no proof he knew El-Mahroug was a minor.

Judges believed however that numerous people had lied during the trial, including El-Mahroug, who was caught on tape bragging about sex with Berlusconi.

She described orgiastic scenes at his parties, before later saying she made it all up.

Prosecutors launched an investigation that led to the Milan trial, which opened in 2017.

Berlusconi, who was prime minister three times between 1994 and 2011, was accused of doling out millions of euros in hush money in the form of houses, cars and monthly payouts.

However, his defence lawyers say the money was compensation for reputational damage for those involved in the case, and insist he was being tried "for the crime of generosity".

Sex slaves

Prosecutor Tiziana Siciliano had earlier described Berlusconi as "a sultan" who used to "liven up his evenings with a group of concubines, in the sense of sex slaves, who entertained him for a fee".

Some of those involved say nothing untoward happened in Berlusconi's villa, which has a private nightclub. But others described orgies and female guests dressing up as nuns to perform erotic dances.

Prosecutors had called for six years in jail for Berlusconi and between one and six years for the 27 other defendants in this case, including five years for El-Mahroug.

All were acquitted on Wednesday.
In this file photo taken on Sept 22, 2022, Forza Italia leader Silvio Berlusconi speaks on stage during a joint rally of Italy's right-wing parties Brothers of Italy (Fratelli d'Italia, FdI), the League (Lega) and Forza Italia at Piazza del Popolo in Rome, ahead of the Sept 25 general election.

The judges have another 90 days to publish their reasoning for the verdict, at which point prosecutors could decide to appeal.

Prosecutor Siciliano said Wednesday she still believed the defendants lied but said there was a legal question mark over whether or not they were technically witnesses when they did so.

El-Mahroug said the trial had been "very scary", adding: "Now I can live again".

Former model Marysthell Polanco, another party guest put on trial, had told journalists her life had been "a nightmare" since the trial began.

"They cannot find guilty someone who has done nothing, where there's no evidence, neither videos nor photos, nothing but gossip," she said.

Prosecutors had also asked the court to confiscate €10.8 million (US$11.5 million) from Berlusconi.

Despite multiple court cases -- he claimed in 2021 to have gone through 86 trials -- the former premier has never spent time behind bars.

Berlusconi was temporarily banned from political office after a conviction for tax fraud in 2013, for which he served a community sentence.

He then returned to the political front lines and was re-elected as a senator last year.
Newsletter

Related Articles

London Daily
Close
0:00
0:00
Former President Restricted from Leaving Ukraine Amid Alleged Plan to Meet Hungary's Viktor Orban
You Are So Beautiful
Ikea Commits £10 Million for 2024 Pay Raises for UK Employees
Postmodern Jukebox European Tour Version
Ant and Dec, our favorite jungle jesters, have thrown a curveball. They're suggesting a 'politician-free' season of 'I'm A Celebrity. Get Me Out Of Here!'
An old French tune (by Georges Brassens) Pomplamoose ft. John Schroeder
Trump’s lawyers say he did not take an oath ‘to support the Constitution’
Sattahip Motor Show 20
Henry Kissinger, the influential American diplomat, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and former Secretary of State, passed away at 100 at his Connecticut home.
SONATE AU CLAIR DE LUNE - Moonlight sonata
Thai Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Dr. Parnpreeb Commends ICRC's Role in Hostage Release
A kiss to build a dream on
Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of the crypto exchange FTX who was convicted of fraud earlier this month, is adjusting to his new life in the detention center where he awaits sentencing.
Wonderful Tonight - Eric Clapton (Boyce Avenue acoustic cover)
Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of the crypto exchange FTX who was convicted of fraud earlier this month, is adjusting to his new life in the detention center where he awaits sentencing.
Mean Blues
The political network founded by the billionaire industrialist brothers Charles and David Koch has endorsed Nikki Haley in the Republican presidential nominating contest
La Chansonnette
Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett's longtime investing partner, dies at 99
Pattaya Addicts
Robert De Niro told an awards ceremony a speech he was reading had been edited without his knowledge, removing critical comments about Donald Trump
Franz Liszt - Liebestraum - Love Dream
Standard Chartered is in the early stages of a search for its next chair as the bank prepares for the departure of Jose Vinals, who’s entering his eighth year in the role
Dream a little dream of me
Eurostar to Suspend Amsterdam to London Service for 6 Months
Unchained Melody sung like you've NEVER heard!
California is not considered a racist place. Or so it seems.
Dave Brubeck - Take Five
Sam Altman's return to OpenAI marks a significant turn of events for Microsoft and its relationship with the AI giant.
Édith Piaf - Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien (Sofie)
Radical immigrants set on fire police cars and loot shops in Dublin.
Rondo Alla Turca
The BBC Caught Again with Questionable Journalistic Standards, as Ugly Facts Undermine Its Attractive Yet Flawed Arguments
Kiss of fire
This video reveals that Target's Black Friday promotions are entirely fake, with no actual discounts. The prices before and after are identical!
Tom Jones - I´ll Never Fall In Love Again 1967, 1989, 2001
Israel's Spokesperson Mark Regev's Response to Comparisons Between Palestinian Teenage Terrorists and Young Innocent Victims of Hamas Captivity
Israel Cachao López - Guajira Clásica
Here is a video showing the moment of the release of the captives by the terrorist organization Hamas and their transfer to the Red Cross on their way back to the State of Israel.
Edward Maya - Stereo Love (feat. Vika Jigulina) (Extended Mix)
Here is a video showing the moment of the release of the captives by the terrorist organization Hamas and their transfer to the Red Cross on their way back to the State of Israel.
Strauss - Radetzky March - Karajan
Bill Gates Envisions a Possible 3-Day Work Week with AI
La vie en rose
Viktor Orban's Provocative Assertions and Their Significance in Europe
The Temptations - My Girl (Smokey Robinson Tribute) 2006 Kennedy Cent
Orban's Blunt Challenge to Brussels: Embracing National Sovereignty in Migration Policy
Orlando Cachaito Lopez Redencion
OpenAI Staff Rebellion: 500 Employees Demand Board Resignation in Dramatic Standoff
Edith Piaf - NON, JE NE REGRETTE RIEN
OpenAI Staff Rebellion: 500 Employees Demand Board Resignation in Dramatic Standoff
RADETZKY MARCH-2008-Wien, New Year Concert
Over 200 Convicted in Italy's 'Ndrangheta Mafia Trial
Only you (And you alone)
In a scandalous revelation at the COVID-19 inquiry, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is under fire for an alleged remark that suggests a chilling indifference to human life during the pandemic
Strangers In The Night
Abu Dhabi-Backed Fund Poised to Assume Control of UK's Telegraph Media Group
Charles Aznavour - La Boheme
Sam Altman and Greg Brockman Join Microsoft Amidst OpenAI Developments
Summer time
Reporters Without Borders Unveils News Platform to Counter Russian Propaganda
Sting and Stevie Wonder - Fragile (from Sting's 60th birthday concert)
Singer Shakira will pay a fine of eight million euros after being accused of evading taxes worth 14.5 million euros during the years 2012-2014.
Aux Champs Elysees
Hungary's Orbán Asserts Ukraine Is Far from EU Membership
Stand By Me - Ben E. King (Boyce Avenue acoustic cover)
Racial Bias in AI Leads to Wrongful Arrest Due to False Recognition
La Mer (Beyond the Sea) – Avalon Jazz Band
Orban Stresses Hungary's Need to Reform the EU Rather Than Exiting It
She
Biden Advocates for Palestinian Authority to Govern Gaza and West Bank
Nathalie Song by Enzo Petrachi Stjepan Hauser Cello
Brigitte Macron Opens Up About Her Marriage to Younger President Emmanuel Macron
Shape of My Heart - Sting (Boyce Avenue acoustic cover)
Apple and Disney Halt Ads on X Following Elon Musk's Antisemitic Post, US Reacts
Radiohead - Creep
Finland Shuts Four Crossing Points on Russia Border
Quizás,Quizás,Quizás - Andrea Bocelli - Jennifer Lopez
Viktor Orbán Welcomes Cameron's Political Return
Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps - Multi-Couples
The UK’s Supreme Court, in a move that surprised no one who respects international law and human rights, has just delivered a landmark ruling against Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s immigration strategy.
Pentatonix Havana
YouTube has introduced an AI feature named Dream Track that can mimic the voices of celebrities such as Demi Lovato and John Legend, enabling users to compose brief songs by specifying lyrics and mood
Paula Cole - Autumn Leaves
Viktor Orbán Welcomes Cameron's Political Return
Oscar Benton Bensonhurst Blues
The UK’s Supreme Court, in a move that surprised no one who respects international law and human rights, has just delivered a landmark ruling against Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s immigration strategy.
OH NANANA vs ABUSADAMENTE
AWS, Google, and Microsoft to Invest $8.5 Billion in Thailand
Nina Simone - ”I Put A Spell On You”. Vezi aici cum cântă Jeremy Ragsd
Top German journalist received €600,000 from Putin ally, leak reveals
NIGHTWISH - The Phantom Of The Opera
A Dramatic Video from Gaza, Provided by IDF Spokesperson Daniel Hagari, Offers Undeniable Evidence of Hamas Establishing Terror Operation Bases Near Schools, Above Hospitals, and Inside Civilian Areas.
Motorshow 2016 Tanjay Negros Oriental
FBI Agents Confiscate Electronic Devices of New York Mayor
Monica Bellucci - Ti Amo
Moody's Downgrades U.S. Credit Outlook to Negative Amid Fiscal Concerns
Michael Jackson - Billie Jean Milena The Voice France 2018
Significant security measures set in place by Scotland Yard this Remembrance weekend in London
Michael Buble (Help Me Make It Through The Night) feat Loren Allred
Memories Canon In D - Maroon 5 (Boyce Avenue piano acoustic cover)
Matteo Simoni - Marina
Maroon 5 - One More Night
Maroon 5 - Memories
Mark Knopfler - Brothers In Arms (Berlin 2007 Live)
Mark Knopfler & Emmylou Harris - Romeo And Juliet (Real Live Roadrunni
Marina, Marina - The LUCKY DUCKIES intimist live concert at Guimarães
Major Lazer & DJ Snake – Lean On Mauranne The Voice France 2016
Love Theme from Romeo and Juliet - Joslin - Henri Mancini, Nino Rota
LoLa & Hauser - Love Story
Linkin Park Jay-Z - Numb Encore (Live 8 2005)
Hallelujah Mennel Ibtissem, The Voice France Leonard Cohen
Leonard Cohen - Dance Me to the End of Love
Leonard Cohen & Natasha Rostova - Dance me to the end of love
La casa de papel - Bella Ciao
La Camisa Negra
L'italiano (Toto Cutugno) - The Gypsy Queens
Juanes - La Camisa Negra
Jonathan and Charlotte - Britain's Got Talent 2012 Live Semi Final - U
John Powell - Assassin's Tango
Joe Cocker - You Can Leave Your Hat On (LIVE in Dortmund)
Joe Cocker - Unchain My Heart 2002 Live
Joe Cocker - A Whiter Shade Of Pale
Jay Z & Alicia Keys - Empire State of Mind LIVE
Jason Mraz - Im Yours (live)
Jarrod Radnich - Bohemian Rhapsody - Virtuosic Piano Solo
James Blunt - You're Beautiful
James Blunt - You're Beautiful & Bonfire Heart (Live at The Nobel Peac)
If You Go Away - Helen Merrill & Stan Getz (Tribute to Virna Lisi)
I'LL BE MISSING YOU
I Say a Little Prayer
Hotel California ( Eagles ) 1994 Live
Historia de un amor - Luz Casal. Vezi interpretarea Biancăi Sumanariu
Here Comes The Sun - The Beatles (Boyce Avenue acoustic cover) on Spot
Heart - Stairway to Heaven Led Zeppelin - Kennedy Center Honors
HAVANA by Camila Cabello Zumba Pre Cooldown TML Crew Kramer Pastra
HAUSER and Señorita - I Will Always Love You
HAUSER - Waka Waka
HAUSER - Sway
HAUSER - Lambada
HAUSER - Historia de un Amor
HAUSER - Despacito
Great Pretender
Georgia May Foote & Giovanni Pernice Samba to 'Volare' - Strictly Come
Gary Moore - Still Got The Blues
GIPSY KINGS VOLARE Penelope Cruz
Fugees - Killing Me Softly With His Song
French Latino - Historia de un Amor
For A Few Dollars More The Danish National Symphony Orchestra (Live)
Flashdance • What a Feeling • Irene Cara
Filip Rudan - “Someone You Loved” Audicija 4 The Voice Hrvatska Sez
Eric Clapton - Wonderful Tonight
Enya - Only Time
Enrique Iglesias - Bailando (English Version) ft. Sean Paul
Enrique Iglesias - Bailamos
Elena Yerevan Historia de un amor
Ed Sheeran - Shape of You (Official Music Video)
Ed Sheeran - Perfect Symphony [with Andrea Bocelli]
Ed Sheeran - Perfect (Official Music Video)
Easy On Me - Adele (Boyce Avenue 90’s style piano acoustic cover) on S
ERA - Ameno
ELENA YEREVAN- Cancion Del Mariachi-IN STUDIO-2017 DPR
Dust In The Wind - Kansas (Boyce Avenue acoustic cover)
Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood
Despacito x Shape Of You - Pentatonix
Deep Purple - Child In Time - Live (1970)
David Foster When A Man Loves A WomanIt's A Mans World (SealMichael Bo
Dance me to the end of Love ( Pi-Air Design )
Coolio - Gangsta's Paradise (feat. L.V.) [Official Music Video]
Conquest Of Paradise (Vangelis), played on Böhm Emporio organ
Cielito Lindo
Chico & The Gypsies - Bamboleo
Canción Del Mariachi - Antonio Banderas, Los Lobos • Desperado
Camila Cabello - Havana (Audio) ft. Young Thug
Camila Cabello - Havana ( cover by J.Fla )
California Dreamin' - The Mamas & The Papas José Feliciano (Boyce Ave
Buster Benton - Money Is The Name of The Game
Hallelujah Pentatonix
Bobby McFerrin - Don't Worry Be Happy (Official Music Video)
Bob Dylan - Knockin' On Heaven's Door Emilia The Voice Kids France
Besame Mucho - Cesaria Evora
Ben E. King - Stand by Me Sax Cover Alexandra Ilieva Thomann
Bella Ciao
Bella Ciao - INSTRUMENTAL
Beautiful in White x Canon in D (Piano Cover by Riyandi Kusuma)
Bad Romance - Vintage 1920's Gatsby Style Lady Gaga Cover ft. Ariana Savalas & Sarah Reich(1)
BELLA CIAO 2020 - KARAOKE ITALIANO
BAMBOLEO - Gipsy Kings • Antonio Banderas, Katya Virshilas
BAILANDO (original)
Awesome Ukrainian yodeler - SOFIA SHKIDCHENKO (with English subtitles)
Avicii - The Nights
Atom - The Great Gig in the Sky
Aretha Franklin - (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman (Official Ly
Antonio Banderas - Cancion del Mariachi (Desperado)
André Rieu - Zorba's Dance (Sirtaki)
André Rieu - Can't Help Falling In Love
André Rieu & Mirusia - Ave Maria
Andrew Reyes Elton John - Don't Let The Sun Go Down The Voice 2020 (
Andreas Kümmert Whiter Shade Of Pale The Voice of Germany 2013 Showd
And I Love You So
All About That Bass - Postmodern Jukebox European Tour Version
Alan Walker - Faded (Piano Cover)
Ain't No Sunshine -- Bill Withers (cover by Canen 12 y.o.)
African music
Adriana Vidović - “Creep” Audicija 4 The Voice Hrvatska Sezona 3
Adriana Vidović - “Believer” Nokaut 3 The Voice Hrvatska Sezona 3
A Fistful of Dollars - The Danish National Symphony Orchestra and Tuva
4 Beautiful Soundtracks Relaxing Piano [10min]
2CELLOS - Whole Lotta Love vs. Beethoven 5th Symphony [OFFICIAL VIDEO]
2CELLOS - Smooth Criminal (Live at Suntory Hall, Tokyo)
2CELLOS - Smells Like Teen Spirit [Live at Sydney Opera House]
2CELLOS - Despacito [OFFICIAL VIDEO]
13 Year Old Girl Playing Il Silenzio (The Silence) - André Rieu
094.All About That Bass
00 - SADNESS PART 1
(Ghost) Riders In the Sky (American Outlaws Live at Nassau Coliseum, 1
(Everything I Do) I Do It For You - Bryan Adams (Boyce Avenue ft. Conn
What a wonderful world
Moon river
×