Ex World Cup player Iaquinta jailed after mafia trial
An Italian court sentenced former national footballer Vincenzo Iaquinta to two years in jail and his father, Giuseppe, to 19 years at the end of a trial of almost 150 people for alleged mafia links.
Iaquinta was found guilty of a firearms' offence but the judge dismissed accusations that he was involved with the 'Ndrangheta, Italy's most powerful organised crime network which is based in the southern region of Calabria.
However, the court in the northern city of Reggio Emilia ruled that his father did have mafia ties.
More than 120 other defendants were also found guilty in the case, which was the biggest ever such trial targeting the 'Ndrangheta.
Lawyers for the pair, who are Calabrian, said they would appeal against the ruling while Iaquinta furiously denied any wrongdoing after the sentence was read out.
Iaquinta used to play for Juventus and was part of Italy's victorious team in the 2006 World Cup.
The court ruled that he had illegally handed over two revolvers to his father, who at the time was under court restrictions and not allowed to have access to firearms.
Iaquinta said he had given the guns to his father for safekeeping as he was about to move house. - REUTERS