Skip to main content

Italy's Silvio Berlusconi wants to do community service, prosecutor says

By Hada Messia and Laura Smith-Spark, CNN
updated 10:20 AM EDT, Fri October 11, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Prosecutor: Silvio Berlusconi has asked to serve his tax fraud sentence as community service
  • A judge will rule on the community service request in the coming days, prosecutor says
  • Italy's highest court upheld Berlusconi's conviction and sentence for tax fraud in August

Rome (CNN) -- Lawyers for former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi have asked if he can serve his one-year sentence for tax fraud as community service, Milan's chief prosecutor said Friday.

A judge will rule on the request, received from Berlusconi's lawyers Friday morning, in the coming days, Chief Prosecutor Edmondo Bruti Liberati said.

No details have yet been revealed as to what kind of community service it might be, when it might start or where it would be served, whether in Rome or Milan.

Amanpour: Berlusconi turns Italy into a political Circus Maximus

In recent days, Italian media have speculated that Berlusconi might look to carry out a community service order at a church or a refugee center in Rome, both near his residence in the capital.

Silvio Berlusconi's last stand?
Is Berlusconi losing influence in Italy?
Amanpour Explains: Berlusconi

Italy's highest court in August upheld a four-year sentence handed down to Berlusconi by a lower court for tax fraud, of which he will serve only one year because of an amnesty aimed at cutting down on prison overcrowding.

He is not expected to serve a prison term because of his age, leaving a choice between house arrest and community service.

Berlusconi, 77, who served on and off as prime minister between 1994 and 2011, has for decades been one of the most colorful and controversial figures in the lively history of Italian politics.

Besides the tax fraud case, he is appealing a prison sentence handed down in June for abuse of power and having sex with an underage prostitute. He has insisted the prosecutions against him are politically motivated.

Last week, he was forced into a political climbdown when members of his center-right People of Freedom Party signaled they would defy his orders and back a coalition government in a crucial confidence vote.

As it became clear that his bid to topple the government was doomed to fail, Berlusconi announced in the Senate that his party would support the confidence motion after all.

CNN's Hada Messia reported from Rome and Laura Smith-Spark wrote in London.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 11:50 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
Experts believe that ISIS may be using a Spanish enclave to bring jihad to Europe.
updated 9:00 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
With an efficient subway, inexpensive taxis and a good public bus system, Hong Kong is normally an easy city to navigate ...
updated 7:32 PM EDT, Sun September 28, 2014
CNN's Ivan Watson was in the middle of a pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong when things got out of hand.
updated 4:12 PM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
The world's animal population has halved in 40 years as humans put unsustainable demands on Earth, a new report warns.
updated 8:49 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
Every day, refugees and migrants risk their lives as they seek a new life. Now, a new report puts a figure to the number of victims.
updated 10:42 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
Mainstream commentators must promote positive role models to Muslims feeling victimized, writes Ghaffar Hussain.
updated 2:13 AM EDT, Mon September 29, 2014
Two men familiar with inside knowledge of ISIS speak with CNN's Arwa Damon.
Explore CNN's interactive that explains ISIS' roots, what it controls, and where its support comes from.
updated 4:10 PM EDT, Thu September 25, 2014
In his first-ever interview as the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani defended his country against allegations of funding terrorism.
updated 11:03 AM EDT, Sat September 27, 2014
The North Korean leader hasn't been seen for weeks, leading to speculation that he is in poor health.
updated 9:54 PM EDT, Tue September 23, 2014
Haider al-Abadi hopes airstrikes don't lead to "of another terrorist element" instead of ISIS.
updated 9:19 AM EDT, Thu September 25, 2014
The United States couldn't do it on its first try. Neither could the Soviets.
updated 11:29 AM EDT, Wed September 24, 2014
CNN's Nima Elbagir reflects on a harrowing trip to Liberia where she covered the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history.
updated 10:23 AM EDT, Fri September 26, 2014
Contrary to public opinion, rats can actually save lives -- Apopo's rats have actually saved thousands.
updated 8:55 AM EDT, Wed October 1, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT