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Two-year jail sentence for Italian politician over sex toy expenses scandal

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Two-year jail sentence for Italian politician over sex toy expenses scandal
File photo of tourists in central Bolzano. Photo: Joe Klamar/AFP
12:07 CET+01:00
A politician in South Tyrol has been handed a two-year jail sentence for buying sex toys using public money.

Pius Leitner, a councillor from the rightwing secessionist party Die Freiheitlichen, was found guilty of embezzlement over the purchase of three erotic gadgets using regional funds.

Finance police uncovered a receipt for €64.92 used to buy the sex toys during a probe in January 2014. The investigation into all 15 political parties on the Bolzano provincial council got underway following an allegation from a council member of misuse of funds.

At the time, party secretary Ulli Mair, who was acquitted on Friday in the same case, had clarified that the toys had been bought as a joke gift for a colleague's birthday.

Mair confirmed that an assistant had bought the products, including a “man’s ring that vibrates" and two stress balls in the shape of breasts.However, she said she had no idea how the receipt for the toys ended up among her expense claims.

She insisted that the gifts had been bought using party members' own money, and that she had received threatening and insulting emails following the case.

On Friday, Mair said that the party would not be commenting to questions until it had had time to "address the situation".

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