Silvio Berlusconi
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PM Berlusconi: Allegations are 'disgusting and shameful'

9 February 2011 Last updated at 17:14 GMT

Prosecutors in Italy have requested an immediate trial for Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, over allegations that he paid for sex with a 17-year-old girl and then used his influence to cover it up.

Mr Berlusconi denies any wrongdoing but the impact on his centre-right government could be immense.

Duncan Kennedy sent this report from Rome.