On April 27, 2007, an Italian appeals court upheld a lower court decision clearing Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi of charges that he bribed judges to prevent the sale of food company SME to rivals in 1985. After the lower court acquitted Berlusconi in 2004, he passed legislation precluding an appeal of the verdict. Subsequent decisions by the Italian Court of Cassation and the Italian Constitutional Court determined that the case should go forward. In March 2007, prosecutors appealed the trial court decision and asked that Berlusconi be sentenced to five years in prison.
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