Berlusconi fury over naked photos Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi has reacted angrily to the publication in Spain of photographs showing topless women and a naked man at his villa. He also faces a probe for using state aircraft to fly guests to Sardinia. The prime minister is said to have used Italian aircraft to ferry guests to and Villa Certosa, "almost every weekend" between the summer of and January of this year, El Pais reports.
Mr Berlusconi is being investigated for misuse of public funds, and confirmed on Thursday that he had been formally placed under investigation by prosecutors. But said the probe would be "swiftly shelved", insisting he was allowed to transport "people he needs" for security reasons. Mystery man Under the headline "The pictures vetoed by Berlusconi", El Pais on Friday published five photos shot by photographer Antonello Zappadu from outside the gates of the Berlusconi villa.
In the first, the face of the Italian prime minister — recently embroiled in a public row over his friendship with an year-old model — can be clearly seen. He is accompanied by several women, with the face of one of them pixelated by the photographer and the others obscured by an awning. The second photograph shows two topless women, one standing and one lying on a sun lounger in the Sardinian sunshine. The woman standing is wearing nothing except a skimpy set of "thong" bikini briefs.
But the third picture is the most stark, showing a fully naked man leaning over the edge of a swimming pool. They were reportedly taken during a party held at the villa for a visiting Czech delegation under the leadership of former Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek. El Pais said it was unable to confirm whether the picture of the naked man it published was that of Mr Topolanek. Other photographs reportedly include scenes of parties attended by several young women, including the year-old model Noemi Letizia.
He has denied having an affair with her. Mr Berlusconi denounced the paparazzi on Friday for violating his privacy and "scandalous aggression", saying the photographs were entirely "innocent". When asked by Italian state-run Rai radio why there had been several naked women at his villa, he replied: "Do you take a shower dressed? The year-old also repeated that there had been nothing "spicy" in his relations with Ms Letizia and that he would resign "the next minute" if proved otherwise.
It will be shelved very soon," Berlusconi told a Milan television station via phone on Thursday. However, the newspaper La Stampa has said the regulation did not take effect until August, three months after the airport pictures. Mr Berlusconi said he had entertained several heads of state and government — including Mr Topolanek — at his villa in Sardinia, and had "offered all that I receive from them, including shows with artistes".
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