Former Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi faces 4 years in jail for tax fraud; the Commerce Department reports 2% annualized economic growth this quarter; and prosecutors claim DNA evidence in the Jessica Ridgeway murder case. Meanwhile, Lindsay Lohan’s publicist quits, and rapper Lil Wayne is hospitalized after a seizure.
Former Prime Minister of Italy Silvio Berlusconi has been convicted of tax evasion and faces four years in prison, but it is expected that he will appeal the decision. Berlusconi, who resigned from the position of Prime Minister last November over Italy’s debt crisis, is accused of purchasing TV rights for films which were then resold to his Mediaset television group at inflated prices. Prosecutors say the scheme, which involved over 3,000 American films, allowed Berlusconi to avoid major tax bills. In addition to the jail sentence Berlusconi, may be liable for a fine of up to 10 million euros. However, Italy’s legal system allows Berlusconi to appeal twice, first in an appeals court and then in a higher court, and because the case dates back to July 2006, the statute of limitations will expire next year meaning it is unlikely that any of the men accused will serve time in jail. Berlusconi, who has dominated Italian politics for the past 18 years, has survived a spate of corruption, embezzlement and sex scandals and is also on trial for soliciting an underage prostitute.
With an annualized rate of expansion of 2%, the United States economy has grown more than expected in the third quarter of this fiscal year. The Commerce Department has said that the increase is partly due to a large increase in government spending. Federal government expenditures and gross investment increased by 9.6% compared to the previous quarter, and defense spending rose 13%. However, the effects of the worst drought in 50 years depressed farm output and cut 0.4% from the GDP. Nonetheless, the United States economy has now been growing for more than three years, since June 2009. Economic issues are dominant in the upcoming Presidential election.
Prosecutors Say There Is DNA Evidence Linking Suspect to Jessica Ridgeway’s Murder, http://abcn.ws/Y36zjs
In addition to a confession, prosecutors in the Jessica Ridgeway murder case say they have DNA evidence tying 17-year-old Austin Reed Sigg to the murder. Traces of Sigg’s DNA were found on Ridgeway’s backpack and at the crime scene in Arvada, Colorado, and also at the scene of an assault on a jogger in May. Sources say that human remains believed to be Ridgeway’s were found in inside Sigg’s home, which is less than a mile from where 10-year-old Ridgeway lived with her mother.
Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart Still Have ‘Trust Issues,’ Says Source, http://bit.ly/Rndjpk
NBCU Chief Says NBC Is “Still Underperforming” Despite Ratings Gains, http://bit.ly/RPRNct
Lil Reese’s Victim, Tiairah Marie, Responds To Violent Video (DETAILS), http://bit.ly/RnjwSc
Lil Wayne Hospitalized After Seizure On Private Jet, http://bit.ly/S13BIg