Silvio’s Ruby in Mexico

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iol pic wld ruby_silvio trial AFP Karima El Mahroug, nicknamed Ruby, enjoys the company of her host Austrian businessman Richard Lugner during the traditional Opera Ball at the state opera in Vienna on March 3, 2011.

Rome -

The Moroccan woman at the centre of ex-Premier Silvio Berlusconi's pay-for-sex trial has turned up in Mexico after missing a court date and becoming entangled in Italy's latest political drama.

News agency ANSA reported on Tuesday that Karima el-Mahroug, known as Ruby, notified her attorney of her whereabouts after reading that her absence on Monday had sparked a minor uproar in court. Attorney Paola Boccardi informed the court that Ruby wasn't expected back until January.

Berlusconi is accused of paying Ruby, then 17, for sex during his notorious “bunga bunga” parties, and using his office to cover it up. Both deny the accusations.

Prosecutor Ilda Boccassini accused Berlusconi's defense of keeping Ruby away to delay a verdict until after February elections, in which Berlusconi is running. Berlusconi's attorney denied the accusation. - Sapa-AP


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