Italy’s finance police were investigating the accounts of all 15 political parties that make up the Bolzano provincial council when they found a €64.92 receipt for a vibrator and two other sex toys, Ansa news agency reported.
The receipts came from members of Die Freiheitlichen, or ‘Freedomites’, a right-wing separatist party which represents German-speaking residents in South Tyrol, an autonomous province in northern Italy.
The investigation, which got underway in January following an allegation from a council member of misuse of funds, is just one of several expense scam probes being carried out in Italy.
In January, an investigation in Sicily exposed dozens of MPs and their aides for squandering cash on everything from designer underwear and Louis Vuitton bags to coffee capsules and comics.
Last October, the regional council of Emilia-Romagna in central Italy was put under investigation for embezzlement after local politicians allegedly spent public funds on everything from €500 pens to cheese.
South Tyrol, or Alto-Adige in Italian, was part of Austria before being annexed to Italy in 1919, at the end of the World War I. The majority of the population speaks German, followed by Italian and the local language, Ladin.