Teen Belly Dancer Could Be Berlusconi's Downfall

Italian leaders are finally getting sick of his never-ending scandals
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 2, 2010 8:30 AM CDT
Teen Belly Dancer Could Be Berlusconi's Downfall
Berlusconi insists that he has done nothing wrong and that his resignation would damage the country.   (AP Photo/Yves Logghe)

(Newser) – Silvio Berlusconi has shrugged off more than his share of sex scandals, but even old allies appear to be finally losing patience with the Italian leader's antics. Parliamentary speaker Gianfranco Fini says Berlusconi should step down if reports that he abused his power and pressured police into releasing a 17-year-old belly dancer accused of theft are true, the Independent reports.

The teen—who says Berlusconi gave her cash after she attended one of his notorious sex parties—was released into the custody of one of the leader's aides after he personally called police in Milan. The commander of the station from which she was released says he was misled into believing that the girl was a relative of the president of Egypt. The embattled Italian leader says he took pity on the girl after learning of her troubles. "I'm a person of the heart, and I take action whenever there is someone in need of help," he said. (Read more Karima Keyek stories.)

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