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The Vatican has placed a cardinal in a financial case


The Vatican has taken an unprecedented move to appoint a cardinal in a lawsuit to answer a case of economic corruption linked to the planting of a luxury London fund that uses Catholic charitable funds.

The indictment of Giovanni Angelo Becciu, who until last year was the cardinal in charge of electing Catholic saints, shows Pope Francis’ great exaltation. driving change the Holy See economy after decades of controversy.

The Vatican has said the trial will begin this month for the first time in Catholic history that a cardinal has been tried on financial charges. Becciu was one of the strongest inside the Holy See before Pope Francis to force him to resign from his religious office last year, which left Becciu a cardinal in name only.

Four or more former Vatican officials and five foreign advisers, including London businessmen Gianluigi Torzi and Raffaele Mincione, have been charged with various offenses including fraud, embezzlement, embezzlement and bureaucracy.

The Vatican’s actions on Saturday, in a joint investigation with Italian financial police, are linked to a number of financial problems that Becciu is facing, including buying a big house in the Chelsea suburb of London.

The head of the Catholic Church worldwide, Pope Francis, has worked harder to curb the Vatican’s financial corruption than his predecessors, and has radically changed the way the Catholic Church manages its finances.

Prior to his appointment as cardinal in 2018, Becciu was second in command to the Vatican’s Secretariat, the Secretariat of State, which oversees Peter’s charitable donations made by faithful members of the Catholic Church. Last year Pope Francis, opens the Secretariat its financial management.

After announcing the charges and hearing the case, Becciu said he denied the allegations and had the opportunity to make his name known.

“I am the one who plotted against me and I have been waiting for a long time to know anything they can accuse me of, to allow me to quickly deny them and prove to the world that I am innocent,” Becciu said in a statement through his lawyers.

The Vatican has said it has filed the charges after an internal investigation that began in July 2019 and has since worked with the Italian Police and the Roman President, as well as requests for help from other countries including the UK, Switzerland and Luxembourg.

The Vatican said the inquiry “has led to a close relationship with consumers in financial markets that have severely disrupted Vatican funds, due to the use of resources sponsored by the Holy Father”.

At the center of the case is the Vatican’s funding for a London-based production facility called 60 Sloane Avenue in Chelsea under the auspices of Athena Capital, a Luxembourg fund founded by Mincione.

The product was sold in 2018 by Mincione at the Vatican directly in a partnership that Torzi, Mincione’s business partner. In the sale, the Vatican alleges that Torzi confiscated funds from the Holy See and that his actions caused great damage to the Catholic Church.

Torzi, a London-based Italian businessman who was arrested earlier this year in the UK at the request of Vatican and Italian officials, has denied any wrongdoing.

Mincione, a former Italian banker based in the UK, has also denied any wrongdoing. Last year, he began prosecuting the Vatican in English courts, seeking a ruling that he and his companies always act fairly and honestly in their dealings with the Vatican. After being linked to the Financial Times, Mincione and his audience did not respond to a request for comment.


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