Rome city council president arrested for corruption

Marcello De Vito accused of corruption in relation to Rome stadium project.

The president of the Rome city council Marcello De Vito of the populist Movimento 5 Stelle (M5S) was arrested on 20 March as part of an investigation into the construction of a new stadium for Serie A football team AS Roma.

De Vito, a former Rome mayoral candidate, faces charges for his alleged involvement in crimes including corruption and influence peddling.

Prosecutors accuse De Vito of having taken bribes from Rome builder Luca Parnasi to favour his stadium project in the south-west Tor di Valle suburb.

Last June nine people including high-profile political and business figures - among them Parnasi - were arrested over alleged corruption relating to the stadium project.

M5S leader Luigi Di Maio posted on Facebook on 20 March: "Marcello Di Vito is out of the M5S", while the mayor of Rome Virginia Raggi also distanced herself from the former top city hall official.

Posting on her Facebook page Raggi wrote: "There is no room for corruption in Rome. Whoever has made a mistake won't see any leniency from this administration."

Raggi has nominated Enrico Stefàno, the current vice president of the city council and president of the city's transport commission, to succeed De Vito.

Photo ANSA