Sicilian lawmaker suspected of paying 25 euros per vote

Sicilian lawmaker suspected of paying 25 euros per vote
An unrelated photo showing ballots at a polling station during an autonomy referendum in Venice on October 22nd, 2017. Photo: AFP
Italian authorities have accused a leftist politician of paying 25 euros per vote to win his seat in regional elections held in Sicily last weekend, the daily La Stampa reported Saturday.

Edmondo Tamajo, 41, has been charged with criminal conspiracy in relation to electoral corruption, said the newspaper.

On his Facebook account Tamajo stated “I have never bought a single vote and have built my political career on daily acts to support people”.

He added he was willing to cooperate with the investigation to clear up the situation.

La Stampa said Italy's financial police have already questioned “voters who had been paid who are willing to confirm the charges” against Tamajo.

It was unclear how many of the 13,984 votes he received had been bought.

La Stampa said Tamajo had been caught via phone tapping that targeted a large swath of the political elite in the Sicilian capital Palermo.

Tamajo has not so far been detained, unlike a rival politician from Silvio Berlusconi's centre-right party, who was arrested and placed under house arrest 48 hours after his election on Sunday on suspicion of tax fraud.

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