ROME May 18 Italy's highest appeals court on
Friday upheld a decision that cleared former Prime Minister
Silvio Berlusconi in a fraud and embezzlement case related to
his private broadcaster Mediaset.
Milan magistrates who wanted Berlusconi to be indicted
lodged an appeal after a judge ruled last October that there was
not enough evidence for a trial for the former prime minister.
That judge did, however, order Berlusconi's son Pier Silvio
and Fedele Confalonieri, respectively the deputy chairman and
chairman of Mediaset, to stand trial in the same case, which has
been dubbed the "Mediatrade" case.
Berlusconi still faces two separate corruption and tax fraud
court cases linked to his business empire, and a third trial
where he is accused of paying for sex with an underage
prostitute and abusing his power to cover it up.
The 75-year-old billionaire media tycoon denies all charges
and accuses Milan prosecutors of waging a politically-motivated
campaign to oust him from power.
The Mediatrade case centres on accusations Mediaset acquired
television rights at inflated prices in deals prosecutors allege
resulted in embezzlement of 35 million euros ($48 bln) and an 8
million euro tax fraud.
(Reporting By Philip Pullella)