Italian prosecutors asked a court on Monday to sentence former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] to three years and eight months in prison on fraud charges. Berlusconi, who resigned as prime minister in November, has been accused of embezzlement relating to his commercial broadcast company, Mediaset. With the former prime minister, the prosecution asked the court to sentence the chairman of the company Fedele Confalonieri to three years and four months. The next hearing in the case will be held on July 2.
Berlusconi has been a defendant in nearly 50 cases. In February, a Milan court dismissed [JURIST report] corruption charges against Berlusconi. He had been accused of bribing his British tax lawyer, David Mills, to lie in two trials relating to his holding company Fininvest in the 1990s. During the same month, the prosecution of Rome, La Procura di Roma, had asked [JURIST report] the Tribunale Ordinario di Roma [official website, in Italian] to place the former PM on trial for tax evasion. He also faces trial on wiretap charges by publishing the transcript of a tapped phone conversation, trial on fraud charges and trial on abuse of power and underage prostitution charges [JURIST reports].