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Police seize Vatican Bank chief's secret memo to Pope

The case of the Vatican Bank's head, who was summarily fired last month, has taken a new twist with a police raid on his home.

  • Nicole Winfield
  • Italy
  • June 11, 2012
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Italian authorities seized a private document meant for Pope Benedict XVI when they raided the home of the Vatican's recently ousted bank chief, a lawyer said Thursday, adding a potentially problematic legal twist in an already controversial case.

Italian paramilitary police raided Ettore Gotti Tedeschi's Piacenza home on Tuesday as part of a corruption investigation into Italy's state-controlled aerospace and engineering giant Finmeccanica. Gotti Tedeschi is a longtime friend of Finmeccanica's current chief who is under investigation in the probe.

During the raid, prosecutors seized a detailed memorandum Gotti Tedeschi prepared for Benedict concerning his May 24 ouster as president of the Vatican bank. Attorney Fabio Palazzo stressed Thursday that the documents were seized and that Gotti Tedeschi didn't hand them over voluntarily.

The seizure poses potentially thorny legal issues, since Gotti Tedeschi was until recently an official of a sovereign state — the Vatican — and as such enjoys some immunity in Italy. The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said the Holy See was aware of the seizure but was waiting to clarify what Holy See-related documents were taken. Only after such an analysis would the Vatican consider any possible action, he said.

The raid was the latest upheaval in one of the most convulsive few weeks in the Holy See's recent history.

Full Story: Ouster of Vatican bank chief takes strange twist

Source: AP/Yahoo News
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