Trial date set for Italy's Berlusconi

0 CommentsPrint E-mail Xinhua, February 16, 2011
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Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi will be judged by a panel of three women in the trial on charges of abuse of power and minor prostitution set on April 6 by pre-trial examining judge in the case Cristina Di Censo.

File photo taken on Oct. 7, 2010 shows Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi reacts during a press conference in Rome, Italy. Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was ordered to stand trial for paying a minor for sex and abuse of power, a judge ruled on Tuesday. The trial is to begin on April 6. [Wang Qingqin/Xinhua]

According to a court statement, judges of the Fourth Chamber of Milan Court Carmen D'Elia, Orsolina De Cristofaro and Giulia Turri will compose the judging panel.

Moroccan-born cabaret dancer named Karima el Mahrough, best known by her stage name "Ruby," will be injured party as Berlusconi allegedly paid her for sex from February to May 2010, when she was 17 years old.

Italy's Interior Ministry will also be injured party in relation to the crime of abuse of power Berlusconi allegedly committed when he reportedly made a phone call to Milan police claiming that el Mahrough was the niece of then Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, and they should release her from custody in order to avoid a diplomatic crisis.

Three police officials allegedly urged by Berlusconi to release Mahrough, detained following a theft complaint, are also injured parties in the trial.

"We expected it," said one of Berlusconi's lawyers, Piero Longo, when the trial date was set on Tuesday, reports said.

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