No get-out card for Berlusconi, Stefàno says

Senate to vote on whether to strip ex-premier of seat in Sept.

No get-out card for Berlusconi, Stefàno says

Rome, August 14 - Italian senator Dario Stefàno, who heads the upper house committee on parliamentary immunity, on Friday said the final work on whether former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi would be stripped of his Senate seat was the sole decision of the colleagues that will be called to vote on the issue next month. "The final decision on whether Berlusconi will be stripped of his Senator appointment in the XVII legislature depends on the Senate Assembly," said Stefàno in an interview with ANSA. "There can be no get-out card coming from the outside." The Italian media has reported extensively on the possibility of a presidential pardon for ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's tax-fraud conviction, though with Friday's comments Stefàno made it clear that this will not affect the Senate vote outcome. A top Italian appeals court earlier this year confirmed a four-year prison sentence for Berlusconi for tax fraud, commuted to a year but carrying a six-year ban from office.

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