The young woman known as Ruby, at the centre of the sex allegations against Silvio Berlusconi, has failed to show up to testify at his trial.
Karima el-Mahroug, who the former Italian premier is accused of paying for sex when she was under-age, is out of the country according to her lawyer and could not be reached.
The prosecution has accused Berlusconi’s defence team of delaying tactics for political purposes. One described it as an attempt to put the trial off until the electoral campaign.
A lawyer for Berlusconi replied that such an accusation was “intolerable”.
Arguing that her testimony is “neither superfluous nor irrelevant”, the trial judges summoned Ruby to the witness stand again next Monday.