facebook
twitter
search
search

Berlusconi says community service for tax fraud conviction beneath him

Dec. 5, 2013 at 11:58 AM

ROME, Dec. 5 (UPI) -- Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi says performing community service for his tax-fraud conviction is beneath him.

Berlusconi, speaking during a book launch in Rome, called performing community service "ridiculous" for both him and Italy, ANSA reported Wednesday.

"It is almost unthinkable that a citizen of my age, one who has been a businessman, the owner of a soccer team and a politician, should be considered in need of rehabilitation by talking to social workers," Berlusconi said.

The Senate last week voted to strip Berlusconi of his seat because of a tax fraud conviction he insists will be reversed. Berlusconi, 77, maintains the tax fraud conviction, which Italy's supreme court upheld during the summer, is politically motivated by left-wing elements in the judiciary who want to remove him from Italian politics.

Berlusconi was convicted Aug. 1 with several other defendants of using offshore companies in tax-haven countries to buy movie rights for his TV networks and grossly inflating the payment amounts to avoid $502 million in taxes.

He was sentenced to four years imprisonment, but three years were automatically pardoned, along with a public office ban for two years. Because he is older than 70, he was exempted from imprisonment and instead must do community service.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
North Korea blasts arrival of U.S. submarine in South Korean port
U.S. lottery lowers portion of cash allocated to jackpot prize
F-16, Cessna planes collide midair in South Carolina, killing two
Colorado court to hear baker's appeal over gay wedding cake
Dylan Roof indicted on nine murder charges