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Italian Senate delivered Berlusconi from bribe accusations postponing 100,000 criminal lawsuits

de Radu Rizea     HotNews.ro
Joi, 19 iunie 2008, 13:58 English | Regional Europe

The right-wing majority in the Italian Parliament voted on Wednesday an amendment to the national security law, postponing one year all lawsuits for deeds punishable with less than 10 years in jail. The National Magistrates Association took a stand, pointing that the decision refers to over 100,000 trials and it "will bring the Justice to its knees and create unprecedented chaos". The fact is that such a decision will also save Berlusconi from a trial in which he is accused of offering bribe.

"We refuse to believe that we suspend 100,000 trials to avoid only one of them. It would be extremely grave", said the National Magistrates Association's secretary general. Still, the so-called "Save the Prime Minister" amendment was approved with 160 votes in favor and 11 against, after the left-wing Senators of the Democrat Party and their allies left the room.

According to the amendment, crimes punishable with over 10 years in jail have priority in Court and all trials for deeds before June 20, 2002, are suspended for one year.

Berlusconi admitted on Monday, in one of the most virulent attacks against the magistrates, that the measure will also apply to "the whimsical trials the left-winged judges opened against me, for political reasons".

The Italian Prime Minister is accused of paying 600,000 dollars to his lawyers for false testimonies in his favor, during the trials against him at the end of the '90's.






















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