Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Berlusconi plans tax case appeal

Former Italian leader Silvio Berlusconi plans to appeal his sentence

Italy's former premier Silvio Berlusconi has turned to Europe's human rights court in a bid to avoid a ban on holding public office and other punishment for his tax fraud conviction.

His top aide Angelino Alfano told reporters the petition to the France-based tribunal "shows that the Berlusconi case isn't closed".

A Senate panel on Monday starts formally discussing if Berlusconi must surrender his Senate seat.

A recent law says those sentenced to more than two years are ineligible for six years to hold public office.

Berlusconi's lawyers contend the law does not apply retroactively to him.

Last month, Italy's top criminal court upheld the conviction.

A law to reduce prison overcrowding shaves the four-year prison term to one year. Because of his age, Berlusconi, 76, is eligible for house confinement.

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