Thursday, December 25, 2012. It's Christmas, and the marriage between Silvio Berlusconi and Miriam Raffaella Bartolini (aka Veronica Lario) comes to an end.
|Silvio and Veronica (Photo EPA)|
Veronica Lario and Silvio Berlusconi had been married for almost 22 year before when the legal separation document was filed, on 25 December 2012, in which the media tycoon agreed to pay 36 million euro a year in alimony to the former actress, in order to keep the ownership all his properties, especially the one they have been fighting over: Villa Belvedere in Macherio, near Milan.
The love story between Silvio and Veronica, however, started quite earlier: they met in 1980, when the Italian entrepreneur wife was still Carla Elvira Lucia Dall'Oglio.
|A young Veronica Lario|
When they decided to marry (15 December 1990, Berlusconi had already been divorced from Carla Elvira for five years), Silvio was 56 and Veronica 32, they had three children (Barbara, Eleonora and Luigi), who were raised in Villa Macherio. Now the estate – which is worth 78 million euro (£64m) and which maintenance costs 1.8 million euro (£1.5) a year – will remain in the hands of the former prime minister of Italy, since all the children already came of age.
According to Italy's civil code the “standard of living” of the couple must be maintained, and that was the principle that lead to the final settlement, even though Ms Lario reportedly asked an alimony of more than 40 million euro (and her ex-husband offered 2.5 million a year), according to the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.
In the past years, Veronica Lario has been living in Macherio, whereas his (now former) husband stayed in Villa Arcore, which he had to share with his son Pier Silvio and his girlfriend Silvia Toffanin.
Mara Carfagna: Silvio would have married her,
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The (emotionally and possibly economically) painful decision to separate was triggered by the fact that Silvio Berlusconi “hurt [Veronica's] dignity as a woman”, by publicly flirting with former model Mara Carfagna (Berlusconi said that he would marry her, if he hadn't already a wife) and mix with under-age girls (like Noemi Letizia).
The former wife of Berlusconi also said he should seek help for his sex-addiction. Many of the disclosers were published in the book “Tendenza Veronica” (“Veronica Trend”), wrote by Ms Lario confidante's (and Italian Sky all-news channel TG 24 anchor woman) Maria Latella.
Later on Silvio Berlusconi was indicted for having paid to have sex with an under-age girl – later to be revealed to be Moroccan Karima El-Mahroug, commonly known as Ruby Rubacuori (Italian for Heart-stealer) – in 2010.
The trial related to the sex scandal will resume in February 2013 (the same month in which general elections will be held in Italy), in the meanwhile Berlusconi declared he was going straight, and limit his affection to his 28-year old girlfriend, Francesca Pascale.