Italy court upholds lavish award for Berlusconi's ex-wife

A ruling by Italy's highest court is going to cost former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi millions.

Italy's Cassation Court on Tuesday upheld a lower court's decision to award 2 million euros ($2.2 million) a month to Berlusconi's ex-wife for the period of the couple's 2010-2014 legal separation.

In making its determination, the Cassation Court noted that Berlusconi is "one of the richest men in the world" and the lavish lifestyle afforded Veronica Lario during her marriage to the media tycoon.

The court said a spouse's standard of living must be maintained during a separation, though not after a divorce.

Berlusconi and Lario married in 1990 and have three children together. Lario announced she was divorcing him in 2009, citing his fondness for other women.

Berlusconi's current companion is nearly 50 years his junior.