Silvio Berlusconi surely could not have imagined it would come to this.
For 17 years he has been the face of Italian politics. His flamboyant, perma-tan style made Italians forget the string of court cases – four of which are ongoing – against him.
His defence has been nothing if not dramatic.
“Legally I’m the most persecuted man there has ever been in the whole world ever he declared in 2009,” he declared in 2009.
It may have been great for dramatic effect but will it stand up in court?
And the string of scandals, including Rubygate over which he still faces charges, have cost him his marriage and a few important friends.
People like former British Prime Minister Tony Blair who openly holidayed with the Berlusconi while in office, and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, an erstwhile guest at his villa in Sardinia, are now keeping their distance.
Andrea Vantini described the song he composed for Berlusconi’s 2008 electoral campaign as a “love song”.
It looks like this is the end of the affair. But with Berlusconi – the ultimate comeback kid – you never know.