The sleazy ex PM, 76, was convicted of giving cash to a prostitute dubbed 'Ruby the Heartstealer' in return for sex at his villa – then using his influence to try to cover it up.
The ban on holding office could mean the end of Berlusconi’s two-decade political career.
Berlusconi and Ruby the Heartstealer
However, his lawyer immediately announced he would appeal, branding the sentence unjust. There are two more levels of appeal before the sentence becomes final.
Billionaire media mogul Berlusconi holds no official post in the current Italian government but remains influential in the uneasy cross-party coalition that emerged after inconclusive February elections.
Trial ... Judge Giulia Turri reads the sentence for Berlusconi today - June 24
The charges stem from his bunga bunga parties in 2010 at his mansion near Milan, where he wined and dined beautiful young women while he was premier. He claims the parties were elegant soirees but prosecutors have branded them sex-fuelled romps that women were paid to attend.
Both Berlusconi and Ruby, whose real name is Karima el-Mahroug, have denied ever having sex.
Ms el-Mahroug, now 20, has said that Berlusconi’s disco featured aspiring showgirls dressed as sexy nuns and nurses performing striptease acts, with one woman even dressing up as President Barack Obama.