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Judicial body drops case against judge in Berlusconi case

Esposito said he spoke only in general terms about ex-premier

13 November, 13:54
Judicial body drops case against judge in Berlusconi case (ANSA) - Rome, November 13 - The Italian judiciary's self-governing body announced Wednesday that it will drop the case against a supreme court judge over a controversial interview he gave after leading the panel that upheld a tax-fraud conviction against ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi in August. A senior committee of the Consiglio superiore della magistratura (CSM), which has the power to transfer judges, agreed by a large majority of 17 to 5 to drop the case against Antonio Esposito which grew out of an interview the judge gave days after a definitive conviction of Berlusconi on fraud charges.

Two committee members abstained from the vote.

He may still face proceedings as a prosecutor at the supreme Court of Cassation is looking into whether there is still a disciplinary case to consider.

Esposito's interview with Naples-based daily Il Mattino caused a massive furore, coming so soon after Berlusconi received his first definitive conviction following two decades of legal battles. It was a highly unusual move as a court usually only comments on its sentences in a written explanation generally published over a month after the verdict is announced.

Esposito said that during the interview, he was talking only in general terms and the newspaper had misconstrued his comments to make it seem as if he had been referring specifically to Berlusconi's case.