di Davide Marchetta
Rome, May 15 - Former Northern League Senator Piergiorgio Stiffoni was sentenced to two years and six months imprisonment by a Rome court on Wednesday for embezzling party funds. Stiffoni has been under investigation for more than a year as prosecutors probed the illegal use of party funds equalling 955,555 euros between 2008 and 2009. The former senator's sentence was plea bargained after of his "admission of responsibility," the court said. According to investigators, Stiffoni "provided important elements for continued probes". Investigations into alleged broad misuse of public funding to the party broke last year in a scandal that led party founder and leader Umberto Bossi to quit. Bossi and members of his family have been implicated in one of several embezzlement scandals.