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Berlusconi: 'No proof or motive'

Berlusconi: 'No proof or motive'
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi (L), with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in Milan, Italy July 23, 2010. UPI Photo/Alex Volgin.. | License Photo

MILAN, Italy, May 9 (UPI) -- Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi says he never paid an attorney $600,000 to provide false testimony about his business operations.

Berlusconi, appearing in court in Milan Monday, said the charges are groundless in the case involving David Mills, a British lawyer he once hired, ANSA reported.

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It is the first time Berlusconi has appeared in court in the Mills case and the fourth time he has appeared as a defendant in four cases against him since March.

"This case is incredible," Berlusconi said as he left the courtroom. He said the Mills trial is "the worst of all, because there is no proof or motive."

Berlusconi, 74, says he is the victim of a smear campaign by left-leaning magistrates who want to oust him from power.

"There is a request circulating inside my party for a parliamentary committee of inquiry to look into whether there is a conspiracy inside the judiciary," Berlusconi said.

Berlusconi is also involved in a court case for allegedly having sex with a minor, then trying to cover it up. He also faces allegations of fraud involving his media empire and in a fourth case he is accused of corruption in relation to his Mediaset television companies.

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In Milan Saturday, Berlusconi called Italy's magistrates "a cancer that we absolutely must eradicate."

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