Italy's parliament backs Berlusconi in sex scandal

February 3, 2011 21:23

ROME  — The Italian parliament on Thursday rebuffed prosecutors' request to search some of Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi's properties as part of a prostitution probe targeting him, giving the embattled leader a much-needed victory.

Milan prosecutors allege that Berlusconi paid for sex with a minor and then used his office to cover it up. They wanted to search the offices of a Berlusconi accountant, Giuseppe Spinelli, who allegedly handled payments on behalf of the premier to the minor as well as other payments to a number of young women who attended parties at his villas.

The premier has denied wrongdoing.

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