Friday, Oct 26, 2012 3:03 PM UTC

Berlusconi sentenced to four years for tax evasion

The former Italian prime minister did not come to court

MILAN (AP) — An Italian court on Friday convicted former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi of tax fraud and sentenced him to four years in prison.

In Italy, cases must pass two levels of appeal before the verdicts are final. Mr. Berlusconi was expected to appeal.

The conviction was in a case stemming from dealings of Mr. Berlusconi’s Mediaset business empire. Earlier in the week, Mr. Berlusconi announced that he would not run for a fourth term.

Mr. Berlusconi, 76, was not in the courtroom for the verdict.