Bari (Italy): A fire has damaged the Italian villa in which an escort linked to Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was allegedly gang-raped, a media report said Tuesday.
The blaze broke out in the villa in south Italy early Monday when an old fridge blew a fuse in the kitchen, according to local newspaper Gazzetta del Mezzogiorno.
A young female guest, a housekeeper and a gardner were present at the house owned by businessman Salvatore De Lorenzis. All managed to escape unharmed, the paper said.
Escort Patrizia D`Addario, who slept with Berlusconi and taped their encounter, last week told police she was repeatedly raped by De Lorenzis and two other male house guests at his villa.
She claimed she was held prisoner there during a three-day ordeal in the middle of August. De Lorenzis had denied the allegations.
D`Addario`s i-phone was found at the villa, but had apparently been crushed under the wheels of a car and nothing could be retrieved from its memory. She claims De Lorenzis took her phone and her tape recorder from her.
Prosecutors in Bari have opened an investigation into D`Addario`s claims.
D`Addario sparked controversy last year when she taped her encounter with Berlusconi and released it to the press. She claimed the prime minister failed to keep his promise to help her with a building development in her hometown of Bari.
Berlusconi, 73, admitted having sex with D`Addario but said he had never paid a woman for sex and didn`t know she was an escort.
After her disclosures, D`Addario reported that her apartment was ransacked and items removed from it including her computer, documents and underwear. She has also claimed to have received several threats.