Valter Lavitola, the Italian extortionist and bagman whose involvement with Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli, in a corruption scandal that has shaken Panama to its very foundations, has entered a plea of guilty to embezzlement of €23m, in another unrelated case, and has been sentenced to three years, eight months in an Italian prison. He is currently in custody.
Lavitola is also named in a $42m organised prostitution case that involves former Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi, and the notorious Finmeccanica case, in which $270m of contracts with the Government of Panama were to be illegally obtained through bribes and kickbacks delivered to Martinelli, as well as a helicopter. Other corrupt activities, involving Brazil, Colombia, Iran and India, are also charged, in connection with sales to those countries.
|Lavitola with Martinelli and Berlusconi
Lavitola has personal knowledge of Martinelli's guilt, and it is assumed that his cooperation to date has implicated the Panamanian president The question is; when will Italy indict him, and how will they gain custody ? We shall be closely monitoring the unfolding scandal, and shall report back to our readers all important developments, as they occur.