Rome mayor cleared in crony­ism trial

Oman Daily Observer - - EUROPE -

ROME: Rome Mayor Vir­ginia Raggi (pic­tured) was ac­quit­ted on Satur­day of mak­ing false state­ments to cover up sus­pected crony­ism, bring­ing a sigh of re­lief to Italy’s main rul­ing party, the anti-es­tab­lish­ment Five Star Move­ment (M5S).

The M5s-af­fil­i­ated Raggi stood ac­cused of ly­ing when she said that her for­mer head of per­son­nel, Raf­faele Marra, did not in­flu­ence her de­ci­sion to pro­mote Marra’s brother Re­nato to a se­nior coun­cil po­si­tion.

“Ac­quit­ted. With this word, the Rome tri­bunal, which I thank and re­spect for the work it has done, has put an end to two years in which I suf­fered me­dia and po­lit­i­cal at­tacks of un­prece­dented bru­tal­ity and un­jus­ti­fi­able fe­roc­ity,” Raggi wrote on Face­book.

On Twit­ter, she cel­e­brated the end of “two years of mud­sling­ing.”

Pros­e­cu­tors had asked for a 10-month jail sen­tence. They said they would wait for judges to ex­plain their de­ci­sion in writ­ing — which usu­ally takes sev­eral weeks — be­fore de­cid­ing whether to ap­peal the rul­ing.

Raggi, Rome’s first-ever fe­male mayor, was elected in 2016. It was a historic vic­tory for the M5S, an anti­estab­lish­ment party which has since con­quered na­tional govern­ment, form­ing a coali­tion this year with the far-right League.

Earn­ing a crim­i­nal record would have been po­lit­i­cally em­bar­rass­ing for a politi­cian who won on the back of a clean pol­i­tics ticket, af­ter a lo­cal graft scan­dal dis­cred­ited politi­cians from ri­val par­ties.

She would have had to re­sign, ac­cord­ing to the M5S’ ethics code.

— dpa

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Oman

© PressReader. All rights reserved.