Friday March 1 2013
Cellino refuses jail release

Cagliari President Massimo Cellino has refused to leave jail even after he was granted house arrest. “He will only walk away as a free man.”

The club patron was arrested and held last month when accused of embezzlement of funds and the illegal construction of the Is Arenas stadium.

Also arrested were the Mayor of Quartu Sant’Elena – the area where the stadium was built – and other figures in the local council.

Today the court gave the all-clear for Cellino to be released and moved to house arrest, but he has refused to go.

“President Cellino has decided he will leave only when his total innocence is recognised, as he has done nothing wrong,” declared lawyer Benedetto Balleri.

“The President is in good spirits and confirms what he has said from the start. He refused to go out on house arrest.”

Investigators claim Cellino constructed the Is Arenas over the summer and registered it as a temporary structure, therefore avoiding the paperwork and permission needed to build a permanent stadium.

They also accused him of embezzling funds set for other structures in order to form the arena and of intimidating behaviour towards the local council.

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