Prosecutors seek 6-year jail term for Berlusconi

Prosecutors have demanded a six-year sentence and lifetime ban from public office at the latest trial of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, BBC reports.

They allege he paid for sex with a 17-year-old dancer at his residence in 2010 and abused his term in office.

Mr Berlusconi, who is already embroiled in several court cases, was given a four-year sentence for tax fraud in October 2012.

He lost an appeal to overturn the conviction last week.

In the latest case, the prosecution in Milan said that women invited to his private residence for so-called “bunga-bunga” party evenings were part of a prostitution system set up for his personal sexual satisfaction.

The allegations focus specifically on his relationship with 17-year-old Moroccan girl Karima El-Mahroug, known as “Ruby the Heartstealer”, whom he is accused of paying for sex.

Both she and Mr Berlusconi have denied the allegations.

Mr Berlusconi is also charged with abusing his power of office after calling a police station to press for the release of Ms Mahroug from custody when she was arrested in Milan in a separate petty theft case.

He has acknowledged the phone-call but says it was made as a favour to former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, whose granddaughter he believed Ms Mahroug to be.

Mr Berlusconi’s defence lawyers will present their final arguments at the beginning of June, with a verdict expected later that month.

The 76-year-old already faces a four-year prison sentence and five-year ban from public office for a fraud conviction, which he is expected to appeal against in Italy’s highest court, the Court of Cassation.

Last week Italian prosecutors requested a new corruption trial against Mr Berlusconi, who they say allegedly bribed a left-wing senator to defect to his right-wing People of Freedom party (PDL) in 2006.

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