Silvio Berlusconi unlikely to serve one-year jail term

Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi has been sentenced to one-year in prison over an illegal wiretap.

London: Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who has been sentenced to one-year in prison over an illegal wiretap, will most likely be put under house arrest.

He was accused of arranging for a police wiretap concerning a political rival to be leaked and published in a newspaper run by his brother.

Under Italian law, prison sentences handed down to those over the age of 75 can be commuted to house arrest.

According to the BBC, prosecutors brought the wiretap case after a transcript of a phone conversation intercepted by the authorities was published in the newspaper Il Giornale, which is owned by Berlusconi’s brother Paolo.

The conversation took place between the head of insurer Unipol and Piero Fassino, who was the leader of the biggest centre-left party and Berlusconi’s biggest political rival at the time, the report said.

Unipol was trying to take over BNL bank in 2005. Magistrates had ordered the wiretap as part of an investigation into inappropriate interference in the takeover, it added.

The publication of the transcript in a national newspaper broke secrecy rules, and Berlusconi was accused of obtaining the transcript from the wiretap company used by magistrates.

He was convicted of breaching confidentiality, and his brother Paolo was convicted of the same charge and jailed for two years and three months, the report added.