Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has threatened to sue The Economist for libel because of a story accusing him of corruption. The British magazine published a lengthy dossier charging that Berlusconi bribed a judge in the 1980s, while he was amassing his $8 billion media empire, and that he abused his political office this spring to force a halt to his bribery trial. “The evidence we have assembled,” the magazine said, “stands in sharp contradiction to the supposedly factual claims Mr. Berlusconi made in court.” The magazine challenged the premier to explain the discrepancies; his business group, Finninvest, said the editorial was “a challenge to the truth.” Berlusconi already has one lawsuit pending against The Economist over its claim two years ago that he was “unfit to lead Italy.”
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