Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi has benn sentenced to 4 years in jail for tax fraud in the purchase of broadcasting rights by his TV company. Berlusconi can appeal the ruling twice before the sentence becomes definitive and will not be jailed unless the final appeal is upheld. The four-time premier stood was convicted for inflating the price paid for TV rights by Berlusconi, and using the money to create illegal slush funds.
He has also been asked to pay damages of 10 million euros to the tax authorities. The ruling came two days after Berlusconi, 76, confirmed he would not contest the next elections. Another trial over accusations of paid sex with an under-aged prostitute is underway in Milan.