9 thoughts on “Italian film on Berlusconi’s earthquake corruption

  1. Graft probe builder ‘didn’t talk’

    Lawyer denies Diego Anemone made ‘admission’ about general

    14 May, 12:13

    (ANSA) – Perugia, May 14 – A Rome constructor at the centre of probes into suspected public tender graft on Friday denied press reports that he had started talking to police about one of several deals under investigation.

    Friday’s dailies reported that Anemone, on being released from preventive detention on Sunday after his arrest in February, admitted an allegedly shady arrangement with secret service General Francesco Pittorru over two Rome flats.

    But Anemone’s lawyers told ANSA he had never made such an admission.

    The 38-year-old builder, under investigation in connection with tenders including work for the original site of last year’s Group of Eight summit, “did not answer questions, did not make spontaneous statements and above all did not make any admissions,” the lawyers said.

    The probe into Anemone’s affairs sparked fresh polemics Thursday after a list of hundreds of names found on his computer was leaked to the media.

    The list included politicians, top civil servants, police officials and entertainment personalities.

    According to media reports, investigators suspect that Anemone’s firm may have performed work free of charge in the homes of the 350 listed people – and perhaps some 50 more not on the list, according to some reports.

    Many of those cited in the reports have already denied wrongdoing or said they have proof of payment for the services performed by Anemone’s company in their homes.

    The company reportedly also worked for a number of ministries, police and army barracks and at Palazzo Chigi, Premier Silvio Berlusconi’s office.

    The eight-page-long list was found by prosecutors in Anemone’s computer during a graft probe connected to the construction of public venues for the 2009 world swimming championships in Rome.

    As well as for the planned G8 venue in Sardinia, Anemone is at the centre of other probes for construction work done at state venues and a police academy in Florence.

    News of the probes first broke in February when prosecutors ordered the arrest of the head of the state public works office, Angelo Balducci, 54; the Tuscany region’s public works contractor Fabio De Santis, 61; and state official Mauro Della Giovampaola, 44.

    Anemone was also arrested but he and Della Giovanpaola were released from preventive custody on Sunday.

    He claims his company always “worked honestly”.

    The businessman has also been linked to former industry minister Claudio Scajola, who was forced to resign last week amid reports Anemone partly paid for the purchase of his Rome apartment in 2004.

    Scajola denies wrongdoing and says he never dealt with Anemone but only with Angelo Zampolini, an architect who worked for the construction company and renovated the former minister’s flat near the Colosseum.

    Anemone is also linked to Civil Protection Chief Guido Bertolaso, whom prosecutors suspect may have taken bribes and struck sex-for-favours arrangements after the businessman won a tender for the restructuring of the original venue of the G8 in the Sardinian island of La Maddalena.

    Bertolaso, who has offered to step down, said at a news conference last week he had “never lied to Italians” and had “a clear conscience”.


    As well as Pittorru, others whose names featured in the list published Thursday are Nicola Mancino, vice-president of the Supreme Council of Magistrates (CSM), who promptly denied wrongdoing; the Deputy General Manager of state broadcaster RAI Giancarlo Leone; intelligence chief Gianni De Gennaro; film director Pupi Avati; and former transport and infrastructure minister Pietro Lunardi.

    The centre-left opposition has voiced concern the latest reports indicated that the country was facing a revival of the 1990s Tangentopoli scandals which swept away the once dominant Christian Democrat and Socialist parties.

    Opposition leader Pier Luigi Bersani claimed a “mechanism” was emerging “to broaden (public) tenders to include reserved and non-tendered bids in a distorted application of European Union directives”.

    Berlusconi reportedly told businessmen earlier this week he did not believe the probes would lead to anything similar to Tangentopoli but pledged to oust anyone found guilty from the government and from his People of Freedom (PdL) party.

    The premier said the probes would not damage the government in any way.

    Coalition ally, Northern League leader Umberto Bossi, told reporters that as long as he, his party and Economy Minister Giulio Tremonti “were around” there would be “no risk for the government; they’re not going to topple it”.


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