Sunday, November 13, 2011

Silvio Berlusconi - Timeline

29 September 1936 Silvio Berlusconi is born in Milan. The young man begins his career by selling vacuum cleaners and builds a reputation as a singer in nightclubs and on cruise liners.

1961 Graduates with a law degree from the University of Milan and sets up Edilnord, a construction company, establishing himself as a residential housing developer around his native Milan.

1965 Marries Carla Elvira Dall'Oglio. The couple have two children, but divorce in 1985.

1971 Launches local cable-television company Telemilano, which grows into Italy's biggest media empire, Mediaset. Through his holding company Fininvest, Berlusconi also owns football club AC Milan, Italy's largest publishing house, Mondadori, and newspaper Il Giornale, among other holdings.

1990 Marries Veronica Lario 10 years after seeing her for the first time, performing topless in a play. They have three children.

1993 Founds his own political party, Forza Italia - Go Italy - named after a chant used by AC Milan fans.

March 1994 Wins first of three election victories and forms a coalition with the rightwing National Alliance and Northern League. The coalition crumbles after seven months.

April 1996 Loses first of two elections to Romano Prodi.

May 2001 Returns to power. His government goes on to be the longest-serving in Italy since the second world war.

August 2004 Hosts Tony and Cherie Blair at his Sardinian hideaway.

April 2006 Declares himself "the Jesus Christ of politics" on the campaign trail, but loses again to Prodi.

July 2006 Ordered to stand trial for alleged fraud, false accounting, embezzlement and tax fraud. A Milan court refuses to indict the prime minister in 2011, but his eldest son, Pier Silvio Berlusconi the Mediaset chairman, Fedele Confalonieri, and nine other defendants will appear in court.

May 2008 Elected prime minister for the third time. Faces 50 votes of confidence over the next three years.

May 2009 Lario confirms she will file for divorce. She is reported to have said she could not be with a man who "consorted with minors" after Berlusconi attends Noemi Letizia's 18th birthday party.

October 2009 Patrizia D'Addario gives a TV interview claiming Berlusconi slept with her knowing she was a prostitute. Months of lurid allegations of Berlusconi-hosted "bunga-bunga" sex parties follow.

December 2009 Is hit in the face with an alabaster statuette of Milan cathedral during a political rally.

February 2011 Judge orders Berlusconi to stand trial on charges of paying for sex with underage alleged prostitute Karima "Ruby" El Mahroug, a charge they both deny. He is also accused of abuse of office after it emerges he intervened in 2010 to have Ruby released from a police station where she was being held for theft.

12 November 2011 Four days after losing his parliamentary majority and saying he will resign as prime minister, Berlusconi steps down. He faces three ongoing trials.

From : The Guardian