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30 Amazing Things You Probably Didn't Know About Silvio Berlusconi

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Silvio Berlusconi, the controlling shareholder of Mediaset, the owner of the Italian football club A.C. Milan from 1986 to 2017, is an Italian media tycoon and politician who served as Prime Minister of Italy in four governments. Here are some facts about the former Italian Prime Minister:

  1. Silvio Berlusconi was born on September 29, 1936, in Milan, Italy. Into a middle class family of Rosa Bossi and Luigi Berlusconi, a bank employee. He has a younger sister Maria Francesca Antonietta Berlusconi and a younger brother Paolo Berlusconi.
  2. He is law graduate from Universita Statale, Milan with thesis on the legal aspects of advertising. He was exempted from one year compulsory service in the military, as a first-born child in his family. However this did not constitute reasonable grounds for exemption.
  3. Berlusconi is upright bass player who performed in his group and occasionally as cruise ship crooner. He along with Tony Renis is credited for writing A.C. Milan’s anthem and his political party Forza Italia’s anthem with opera director Renato Serio.
  4. He had married twice in his life. In 1965 he married Carla Elviro Dall’Oglio, before divorcing her in 1985 to marry actress Veronica Lario, aka Miriam Bartolini in 1990. He had fathered five children, Maria Elvira and Pier Silvio, with Oglio and Barbara, Eleonora and Luigi, with Lario.
  5. He began his business career in construction and in late 1960s he built Milano Due, residential apartments with interconnecting roads without intersecting any traffic. This was built in Segrate town as a new town. He owned Edilnord Company associated with Fininvest group.
  6. He owns Italy’s first privately operated television channel with his ‘Tele Milano’ a cable television company. This was later evolved into Canale 5, the first national private TV station, which was relocated in Milan in 1977. He also owns ’Italia 1’ and ‘Rete 4.’
  7. In 1978 he started first media group called Fininvest, which soon expanded into country wide network of local TV stations.
  8. He breached the monopoly of ‘RAI’ the national public broadcasting company, with his first and Italy’s only commercial TV Empire. This was made possible with special and emergency decree legalizing the nationwide transmission of television station on October 20, 1984 and further liberalized with Mammi law in 1990.
  9. Berlusconi apart from controlling Television and publishing house, he founded one of the biggest banking and insurance group, Mediolanum. He has also interest in cinema and home video distribution with Medusa Film and Penta Film and also owned the football club A.C. Milan from 1986 to 2017.
  10. On January 26, 1994, Berlusconi’s political career began with his own political party ‘Forza Italia.’ following political turmoil with judicial investigation involving the Pentaparitito, the five governing body. It is also reported that he entered politic to avoid imprisonment.
  11. He won the March 1994 general election and was elected prime Minister, in alliance with Lega Nord and National Alliance, promising one million jobs. His tenure was short lived and he resigned in December 1994.
  12. He was elected Prime Minister for the second time in 2001, by winning the voter’s confidence with undertaking to sign a so-called ‘Contract with Italian,’ a commitment to improve several aspects of the Italian economy and life.
  13. On November 18, 2007, ‘The People of Freedom’ a federation of political parties was launched and won the 2008 general election paving the way for Berlusconi’s third term as Prime Minister on May 08, 2008. On March 27, 2009, he was elected as Chairman of the ‘People of Freedom.’
  14. Berlusconi resigned on November 12, 2011, which was rejoiced by the crowd and he was called a buffoon, dictator and Mafioso. He was involved in numerous trials for corruption, fraud and sex offences and was accused of protecting his own business interest. He also failed on his pre-election promises and failed to prevent economic reforms.
  15. He believed his downfall in 2011, was orchestrate by heads of European Union countries, Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy, Christine Lagarde and Giorgio Napolitano, for his refusal to accept IMF loan, which would mean selling the country to IMF according to him.
  16. On August 01, 2013, Berlusconi was convicted of tax-fraud by the final appeal instance Court of Cassation. He was banned from public office and sentenced to social community work.
  17. His foreign policies were for equal closeness with all Mediterranean countries and had a strong tendency towards pro-American in contrast to many founding members of the European Union.
  18. On November 2007, he was accused of undue favoritism to Bruno Mentasti-Granelli, who owned 33 percent in Central Energy Italian Gas Holding, which signed an agreement with Russian company ‘Gazprom’ to build South Stream pipeline. The Italian parliament blocked it.
  19. In April 2009, his wife Veronica Lario, wrote an open letter not for the first time, expressing her anger at Berlusconi’s choice of young attractive candidates, some with little or no political experience to represent the party in parliament election. He demanded public apology.
  20. In February 2009, Berlusconi issued an emergency decree, after consultation with Vatican, stating that food and water cannot be stopped for any patients. The court had earlier ruled the right-to-die in the case of Eluana Englaro, who had been comatose for 17 years.
  21. On December 13, 2009, he was hit in the face with an alabaster statuette of Milan Cathedral after a rally in Piazza del Duomo. The assailant Massimo Tartaglia has a history of mental illness without any criminal records.
  22. On March 07, 2013 Berlusconi was sentenced to one year jail term in connection with publication by his family’s newspaper of a transcript of a leaked wiretap connected to a banking scandal in 2006.
  23. On October 23, 2013, he along with journalist Valter Lavitola was indicted in bribing case by judge in preliminary hearing. On April 20, 2017, they were sentenced to three years.
  24. On June 24, 2013, Berlusconi was found guilty of paying El Mahroug for sex when she was 17 years and for abusing his powers in an ensuing cover-up. On July 18, 2014, on his appeal against judgment, the Italian court announced the conviction against him was overturned.
  25. Berlusconi is accused of mafia links even as he denied its very existence. Several mafia turncoats, Vittorio Mangano, the gardener and stable man, Antonino Giuffre and Marcello Dell’Utri, the co-founder of Forza Italia have stated of his criminal connections.
  26. During his tenure as Prime Minister, he introduced ‘Bossi-Fini ‘law in 2002 to limit illegal immigration from the coast of North Africa. In 2013, the European Union asked the Italy to modify the law, for it was restrictive and severe.
  27. Berlusconi has always entered into controversy with his insensitive remarks, jokes, gesture and blunders, whether it is heads of the state, women or the victims of natural disaster.
  28. On May 28, 2013, he and his entourage launched an online initiative in recruitment of volunteers to defend Berlusconi from the conviction of Milan’s prosecutors. This initiative called ‘Freedon Army’ and ‘Silvio’s Army’ was condemned.
  29. A number of political writers and political commentators see Berlusconi’s political success as a precedent to Donald Trump’s election as 45th President of United States. Their career took similar path with mafia-linked real-estate development, transitioned into successful media moguls and against all odds, ascended the highest office of government.
  30. On June 07, 2016 after campaigning in local elections, he was hospitalized to the San Raffaele Hospital in Milan with a heart problem. He was advised surgery to replace defective aortic valve.
  31. Silvio Berlusconi Net Worth: $4.3 Billion

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