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Italy's Premier Berlusconi misses second hearing of prostitution trial


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Italy's Premier Berlusconi misses second hearing of prostitution trial

2011-06-01 01:54:43 GMT+7 (ICT)

MILAN, ITALY (BNO NEWS) -- Italian Prime Minster Silvio Berlusconi on Tuesday failed to appear at the second hearing of his trial over prostitution allegations, the ANSA news agency reported.

The 74-year-old Premier did not attend again proceedings as he is currently in Romania. His lawyers said he had institutional commitments that did not allow him to be in the courtroom.

In addition, his defense team presented 16 objections to the proceedings on one of the four trials Berlusconi is currently facing. The Premier is currently involved in three criminal cases against him, three fraud cases and one of prostitution.

Berlusconi is accused of paying Ruby, a Moroccan belly dancer, for sex in September 2009 when she was only 16 years old during one of the Premier's parties at his Milan villa. He claimed he never "laid a finger on her."

Prosecutors claim that the two had sex for at least 13 times when she was 17 years old. Under Italian law, using a sex worker under the age of 18 carries a jail term of up to three years.

The Prime Minister is also accused of abuse of power in the same case. Prosecutors said that Berlusconi used his influence to get Ruby after she was detained over theft accusations. The Premier said she told him he was a relative of ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

His attorneys argued that he was carrying out his official duties when he phoned the police station and enquired about the Moroccan belly dancer last year. Berlusconi added that he was avoiding a possible conflict with the Egyptian government. It was later revealed that Ruby was not related to Mubarak.

The abuse of office charge carries a term ranging from six to 12 years. If convicted, Berlusconi faces up to 15 years in prison. The PM has repeatedly said that the cases against him were part of a political agenda.

Berlusconi's center-right government on Monday suffered a significant blow after losing the key local elections in Milan and Naples which had been governed by the ruling People of Freedom (PdL) party for years.

In recent weeks, the 74-year-old Premier announced that he will not seek reelection in 2013 after his current term runs out. He also proposed Justice Minister Angelino Alfano as his heir in the center-right PdL party.

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-- © BNO News All rights reserved 2011-06-01

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He's an embarassment for the whole human race, however, it's interesting how the ministers he nominated to take part on his government, are doing their best to keep up with him, to notice a question the minister of the economy asked to his mates a few days ago, while commenting on a report pointing out how a huge amount of people are falling into poverty in Italy : " can anyone feeling he's poor here, raise a hand up?" now, in all honesty, how can someone made this sort of remarks with so many people protesting on the streets? was it an instigation to create havoc or what? Or the minister of defence saying there is no way he will listen to what the protesters have got to say (on national tv) then being the only MP coming out from the main exit of the parliament (while everybody else was using a backdoor to avoid a frontal confrontation with the protesters) and making his way across the protesters, why they are doing this? is it just a way to get assaulted so they can later "justify" a repression against the opposition or even worse? is a new "Gladio" on the making?

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I nominate "Gladio" a my favourit word of the day. :lol:

There are enough authoritarian regimes, criminal associations and the likes in the world, to cover every single day of a very unhappy year...whatever makes you happy :lol:

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