Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi looks on during a media briefing with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, at the chancellery in Berlin, Jan. 12, 2011. Berlusconi will be the People of Freedom (PDL) candidate in the upcoming February election. Markus Schreiber/AP
Italy's former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is surrounded by photographers before the taping of the television program Porta a Porta ('Door to door') in Rome January 9, 2013. Remo Casilli/Reuters
Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi waves to supporters during a political rally in Turin, Italy, February 17, 2013. Giorgio Perottino/Reuters
US President Barack Obama (l.) laughs with Italy's Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi (c.) and Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev as they pose for a family photograph at the G20 summit at the ExCel centre, in east London on April 2, 2009. Livio Anticoli/Reuters
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi awaits the arrival of Portuguese President Jorge Sampaio before their meeting at the Chigi Palace in Rome, Nov. 10, 2004. Alessandro Bianchi/Reuters
Pope Benedict XVI welcomes Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi on the occasion of their meeting at the Vatican, June 6, 2008. Alessandro Bianchi/AP
Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi gestures as he attends a People of Freedom party meeting in Rome. Berlusconi marked his 75th birthday on Sept. 29, 2011. Gregorio Borgia/AP
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, French President Nicolas Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi talk July 9, 2009 during the G8 summit in L'Aquila, Italy. Michael Gottschalk/AP
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi seen at a joint news conference with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev at the Barvikha residence outside Moscow, May 16, 2009. Maxim Shipenkov/AP
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's wife Veronica Lario is seen with her husband on June 4, 2004 in Rome. In a new biography, published on June 23, 2004, based on extensive interviews with journalist Maria Latella, Veronica Lario saw herself as Penelope to her husbands Ulysses, staying at home with the family as the hero battles storm and monsters on an epic adventure. Alessandro Bianchi/Reuters
Former Premier Silvio Berlusconi gestures as he answers reporters' questions at the exit of the Turin court, Oct. 15, 1996, where he was called as a witness at a trial against Marcello dell'Utri, an executive of Publitalia, one of Berlusconi's companies. Media also asked Berlusconi about the discovery of a bug in his office, on which a debate will be held at the Chamber of Deputies. Mauro Pilone/AP
Then Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin (l.), former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi (c.), and then Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (r.), smile during their meeting in the mountain resort of Krasnaya Polyana near the Black Sea resort of Sochi, southern Russia, March 8, 2012. Dmitry Astakhov/RIA-Novosti/AP
Silvio Berlusconi had been convicted by a lower Italian court for having paid for sex with an underage woman, then covering it up. An appeals court acquitted the former premier.
ByColleen Barry, Associated Press
An Italian appeals court on Friday acquitted former Premier Silvio Berlusconi in a sex-for-hire case, reversing a lower court conviction that had carried a seven-year prison sentence and a lifetime ban on holding political office.