Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's law that grants him immunity from prosecution has been overturned. Berlusconi, a media tycoon who uses his control over the press to stay in office (I've met dozens of Italian activists who uttered the improbable phrase, "Thank God for Rupert Murdoch, Berlusconi can't bully him," which should give you an idea of what sort of person he is), passed the immunity law, arguing that he couldn't govern effectively if he could be sued or criminally prosecuted for wrongdoing. Several pending lawsuits will now go forward.
The appeal to the Constitutional Court was launched by prosecutors including those from the Mills case.
Berlusconi immunity law overruled
They contended that immunity put Mr Berlusconi above the law and needed to be reversed.
Mr Berlusconi argued that immunity allowed him to govern without being "distracted" by the judiciary.
This is the second time Italy's highest court has thrown out Mr Berlusconi's bid for immunity, after an earlier attempt in 2004 failed.
Of the Constitutional Court's 15 members, five are selected by the president, five by the judiciary, and five by parliament.
They voted 9-6 to in favour of lifting Mr Berlusconi's immunity, the BBC's Duncan Kennedy says from Rome.
(Image: The Economist)
NZ Prime Minister John Key is a racist blowhard who has smeared the opposition parties of “backing the rapists” for their support of NZ citizens with minor criminal convictions (not sexual assault, incidentally) being deported from Australia, where they have been imprisoned.
Last May, Jackie Burns, the deputy leader of the Labour Council in South Lanarkshire in Scotland, voted to close all public toilets as part of the Scottish government’s £22 million cost-cutting programme; early last Saturday morning, police issued him a £40 ticket for pissing in public. (via Reddit)
In a decision that environmental activists see as a hard-won victory, President Obama today announced he is rejecting the request from a Canadian company to build the Keystone XL oil pipeline. The news ends a seven-year review process that was a focal point in the debate over the Obama administration’s climate policies.
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