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FILE PHOTO: Italian President Sergio Mattarella arrives for the Brdo-Brioni Process meeting, a gathering of political leaders from the Western Balkans, in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina May 29, 2016. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo


ROME (Reuters) - The Italian president said on Tuesday he had given a partial pardon to former CIA officer Sabrina de Sousa, who has been convicted in absentia in Italy for the kidnapping of an Egyptian cleric there.

President Sergio Mattarella's decision to reduce de Sousa's conviction to three years from four means that she can now apply for alternative sanctions to prison.

De Sousa, a dual U.S.-Portuguese citizen who denies involvement in the abduction, was detained by Portuguese police last week. Her lawyer said she had already been freed from prison as a result of Mattarella's move and would no longer be extradited.

(Reporting by Gavin Jones; editing by Andrew Roche)