Tiscali boss Soru sentenced to three years

 ROME -- The head of telecommunication for Tiscali, Renato Soru, has been sentenced to three years in prison by the Court of Cagliari for tax evasion, the sum of which comes to 2.6 million euros, on a loan made to Tiscali by another of Soru’s companies Andalas Ltd.

 Soru has resigned from the post of regional secretary of the Democratic Party in Sardinia, however, for the time being, he is retaining his seat in the European Parliament.  The judge who made the ruling was Sandra Lepore, with prosecutor Andrea Massidda calling for a four-year sentence for the MEP, former regional president and secretary of the Democratic Party in Sardinia.

 “I didn’t expect this ruling, I expected to be acquitted.  I think it’s an unjust sentence and I do not believe I have committed any crimes.  It’s a judgement that I hope will be reversed in the other phases of the process,” Soru said, just a few minutes after the verdict.  For the defense team it is, “a unique ruling that found criminal responsibility for acts that the same financial offices had interpreted differently, considering that non-existent.”

 Soru came under investigation after Michele Santoro’s programme “Anno Zero” which aired in 2009 and addressed a series of financial transactions that were being investigated by the Financial Guard.  Among the companies mentioned was Andalas Ltd, Soru’s company that is based in London and had allegedly loaned Tiscali around 27 million euros that generated interest, whilst taxes were not payed in the UK or Italy.