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Judges acquit ex-minister Scajola in expensive home scandal

Former PdL politician not guilty in gift of house near Colosseum

27 January, 15:39
Judges acquit ex-minister Scajola in expensive home scandal (ANSA) - Rome, January 27 - Italy's former minister of industry Claudio Scajola was acquitted Monday on charges related to a shady real-estate deal involving an expensive home near Rome's iconic Colosseum.

Prosecutors had originally asked that Scajola be given a three-year jail sentence for illicit funding after he said that he "did not know" who paid for his expensive home in 2004.

Scajola, then a member of ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's now-defunct People of Freedom (PdL) party, was forced to resign in 2010. The case against businessman Diego Anemone was timed out, although prosecutors had sought a two-million-euro fine.

The property was allegedly bought by Anemone, who is said to have paid 1.1 million out of a total of 1.7 million euros through architect Angelo Zampolini for the purchase, as well as paying 100,000 euro for renovations.

The case is part of broader investigations into alleged illegal activities by Anemone that emerged following the 2009 Group of Eight (G8) summit in Italy.

The meeting of G8 international leaders was initially scheduled to be held in La Maddalena in Sardinia before being moved to the earthquake-stricken town of L'Aquila.