Languages
Page last updated at 11:18 GMT, Monday, 16 November 2009

Berlusconi tax fraud case resumes

Italy's Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi
Silvio Berlusconi did not appear at the resumption of his trial in Milan

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has gone back on trial accused of tax fraud.

The charges are linked to the purchase of television and film rights by his family company, Mediaset.

The trial follows a recent decision by Italy's highest court to lift his immunity from prosecution.

Mr Berlusconi did not appear in the Milan court and is attending a UN food summit in Rome. The proceedings were adjourned until 18 January.

The case had been suspended last year, after Mr Berlusconi became prime minister, when a law was passed giving him immunity while in office.

That immunity was lifted in October by Italy's Constitutional Court.

Time limit?

The court's decision also cleared the way for the resumption of another trial involving allegations that Mr Berlusconi bribed British tax lawyer, David Mills. That trial is due to resume later this month.

Mr Berlusconi denies the charges in both cases, saying he is the victim of magistrates with a political agenda.

A controversial new bill aimed at cutting the time given to court cases is currently passing through parliament.

If approved, the legislation would mean the cases against Mr Berlusconi being dropped.

The prime minister's opponents accuse him of tampering with the legal system for his own ends, something he rejects.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Berlusconi 'most persecuted man'
09 Oct 09 |  Europe
Defiant Berlusconi vows to fight
08 Oct 09 |  Europe
In pictures: Berlusconi's annus horribilis
14 Dec 09 |  In Pictures
Berlusconi immunity law overruled
08 Oct 09 |  Europe
Profile: Silvio Berlusconi
13 Dec 09 |  Europe
Q&A: Berlusconi v the courts
14 Jan 10 |  Europe


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific