Sunday 20 August 2017

'Police brought Berlusconi girls for bunga bunga parties'

Nick Squires in Rome

Silvio Berlusconi allegedly used his official security entourage to ferry a group of young women to his house for bunga bunga parties.

Security police guarding the entrance to the prime minister's residence outside Milan were given a list of guests to be freely admitted, a secret service officer said in an intercepted phone call.

A 227-page dossier of evidence, one of two presented to parliament by investigators, included testimony from the officer that women were dressed in matching red outfits for Valentine's Day last year.

The dossier also disclosed that an alleged under-age prostitute earned €40,190 from sexual encounters with Mr Berlusconi.

According to wire taps, Iris Berardi, a Brazilian showgirl, told a friend last September: "Papi (Berlusconi) gives me what I want."

Miss Berardi (19) is believed to have been at the prime minister's residences in Sardinia and Milan in November and December 2009, a few weeks before she turned 18.

If prosecutors can prove that he paid her for sex, he could be charged with a second count of sexual relations with an under-age prostitute.

Mr Berlusconi (74) denies any wrongdoing and rejects calls for his resignation. He has called on his political supporters to prepare for a mass rally in Milan next month.

Another woman, Aris Espinoza, a showgirl from the Caribbean island Dominica, told a friend she could earn up to €5,000 if she had sexual relations with the prime minister.

Some of the women hoped to enter politics.

Barbara Faggioli, a former Playboy model, discussed getting a political post with Nicole Minetti, who became a councillor in Lombardy last year.

Miss Faggioli was recorded as saying she hoped there would be an early election so she could be a candidate for Mr Berlusconi's People of Freedom Party.

There was further pressure on Mr Berlusconi's government on Thursday when it was described as being "paralysed" by the sex scandals by former European Commission President Romano Prodi.

Paralysed

Mr Berlusconi "is in power, but not in government," Mr Prodi said. "He has power, but he's paralysed in any governmental decisions."

Still, Mr Prodi said that "at the moment, there's no immediate viable alternative" to his one-time political rival and that he's "worried".

Thursday's documents also revealed purported conversations between Miss Minetti and a friend, in which Miss Minetti insulted Mr Berlusconi and accused him of having dragged her into "a mess."

Miss Minetti recently told 'Corriere della Sera' newspaper that she was just venting in a moment of rage, and that the premier remains her "point of reference."

Another woman, Nadia Macri told investigators Mr Berlusconi paid her €10,000 to stay with him for two nights. She claimed that the parties were full of young girls. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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