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Papal Butler agrees to Testify in Widening Vatican Leak Scandal

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Messenger: Eleazar Sent: 6/4/2012 8:16:37 AM

Inside the Vatican
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Papal Butler agrees to Testify in Widening Vatican Leak Scandal
Martin Barillas May 29th 2012
Cutting Edge Senior Correspondent

Paolo Gabriele
Paolo Gabriele riding in Popemobile.

Accused of leaking confidential information from the Vatican, Paolo Gabriele has agreed to cooperate with investigators. The former butler of Pope Benedict, Gabriele was arrested on May 24 by Vatican police and is being held in a cell at the Vatican City. The Italian media is circulating rumors that a cardinal of the Church may be involved in the scandal. However, papal spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi has said “there is no cardinal under suspicion.” Incriminating documents were found in Gabriele’s Vatican City apartment.

Often seen in the company of the pope, Gabriele was frequently photographed while sitting in the so-called Pope-mobile during papal visits. The man who “lives in the Pope’s shadow” is the one person sees Pope Benedict most frequently on a daily basis even though he is not ordained nor holds any other ecclesiastical distinctions. Gabriele’s arrest came during the same week as the president of the Vatican Bank was ousted after the book Your Holiness: The Secret Papers of Benedict XVI revealed that conflicts over his management of the institution led to clashes within the Church. Banker Ettore Gotti Tedeschi said that he would have to say “ugly things” in order to defend himself, so he would instead stay quiet out of his respect for Pope Benedict, reports the Los Angeles Times.

The author of Your Holiness, Gianluigi Nuzzi, says he met with the Vatican whistle-blower in an unfurnished apartment near the Vatican, according to the UK-based Guardian. Italian media had already been publishing letters for several months that revealed the conflicts that exist within the Vatican, raising doubts that butler Gabriele was the sole source of the leaks. “His arrest seems more the Vatican’s desire to find a scapegoat,” a Vatican expert told the New York Times.

Meanwhile, Gabriele is currently in custody in a Vatican jail and has met with his attorney and wife. Attorney Carlos Fusco said on May 28 that Gabriele is "very serene and calm," despite the cacophony of rumors and conspiracy theories concerning his arrest and detention. Fusco said that Gabriele has told a Vatican judge investigating the case that he will "respond to all the questions and will collaborate with investigators to ascertain the truth."

Italian daily La Repubblica published an interview on May 28 with what it described as another Vatican "mole" who described the various agendas at play behind the leaks. The mole said the aim was to highlight Pope Benedict’s supposed weakness and the fears of his secretary of state, but also to make clear that the "fundamental role of the Church is to defend the Gospel, not accumulate power and money." Vatican spokesman Rev. Lombardi dismissed the rash of unsourced reports in Italian media as “pure fantasy.

Gabriele, a 46-year-old father of three, was always considered extremely loyal to Pope Benedict and the deceased Pope John Paul II, for whom he briefly served. Vatican insiders have said they were baffled by his alleged involvement, and Lombardi said on May 28 that the entire scandal has caused pain throughout the Vatican. Pope Benedict appointed a committee of cardinals to investigate the leaks, and is being kept abreast of developments.

According to Rev. Lombardi, the pontiff is "aware of the delicate situation that the Roman curia is going through." Lombardi said the investigation is intended to "reestablish a climate of clarity, truth, transparency and trust as soon as possible."

Messenger: Ras Kanjas Sent: 6/4/2012 1:26:20 PM

Babylon's definition is Confusion!

Jah has put those who hate Him to confusion!
Let the pontiff and the entire papal system be confused,
For it is their definition!

But what secret information has leaked curious!

Messenger: Eleazar Sent: 6/4/2012 10:33:54 PM

Ras Kanjas,

There were secret internal vatican documents about financial transparency and money laundering that were leaked to the press.

Messenger: Ras Kanjas Sent: 6/5/2012 3:28:22 AM

give thanks!

Messenger: bredren aaron Sent: 6/5/2012 8:56:04 PM

There will never be transparency in the vatican, every time something happens it worms it's way out like the serpent it is.

Messenger: Eleazar Sent: 6/7/2012 9:42:55 PM

I found an online book that is pretty interesting:

Behind the Dictators

Messenger: Eleazar Sent: 8/13/2012 10:32:52 PM

Pope's ex-butler Paolo Gabriele to stand trial
The Pope's butler, Paolo Gabriele (bottom left) arrives with Pope Benedict at the Vatican (23 May 2012). Paolo Gabriele (bottom left) was one of a select few lay people with access to the papal apartments
Continue reading the main story
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The former butler to Pope Benedict XVI will stand trial for stealing confidential papers and leaking them to the press, a magistrate has ruled.

Paolo Gabriele was arrested in May after police found confidential documents at his Vatican flat.

He has been charged with aggravated theft, including stealing a 100,000-euro (£78,000) cheque, while a computer analyst faces complicity charges.

The Vatican says it will continue to investigate the leaks.

Mr Gabriele admitted he was the source of leaked letters published in a controversial book by an Italian investigative journalist in May.

The bestseller, entitled His Holiness, revealed private correspondence between the Pope and his personal secretary discussing corruption and malpractice among Vatican administrators.

The Vatican called the book "criminal" and vowed to take legal action against the author, publisher, and whoever leaked the documents.
'Evil everywhere'
Continue reading the main story
image of David Willey David Willey BBC Vatican correspondent

There were two surprises at the repeatedly postponed Vatican news conference finally summoned on the eve of Italy's biggest holiday of the year, Ferragosto, to announce that Paolo Gabriele is to be sent for trial.

The pope's former butler did not act alone. And Mr Gabriele was the secret source code-named Maria by the Italian investigative journalist who published some of the letters in a bestselling book earlier in the year.

No date has yet been set for the trial - which cannot begin before the end of September at the earliest because the court does not return from its summer recess until then.

There is already speculation that Mr Gabriele (who has confessed fully to investigators and has also written a private letter to Pope Benedict apologising for what he did) might be the recipient of a papal pardon before then. It is not in the interest of the Vatican to have a full-blown criminal trial in the full glare of the world's media.

The Vatileaks letters include documents relating to the scandal involving the Vatican Bank. There is no hint in the long statement issued by the Vatican that the substance of Mr Gabriele's complaints about abuse of power and corruption inside the headquarters of the Catholic Church will be addressed at any trial.

Mr Gabriele told investigators he acted because he saw "evil and corruption everywhere in the church" while the pope was "not sufficiently informed".

As the Pope's butler and personal assistant, Mr Gabriele was one of a select few lay people with access to the papal apartments.

If convicted, he faces up to six years in prison.

The 46-year-old has been living under house arrest at his family's flat in Vatican City, where police discovered a stash of confidential correspondence taken from the Pope's Secretariat of State.

As the Vatican has no jail, Mr Gabriele would probably serve his sentence in an Italian prison under an agreement between Italy and the Vatican, Italian media reported.

The Holy See also accuses Vatican employee Claudio Sciarpelletti, a computer analyst and programmer, of acting as Mr Gabriele's accomplice.

He has been charged with aiding and abetting a crime.

The trial is not expected to start until October at the earliest, court officials said.
Scapegoat theory

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said the Pope, as the sovereign head of Vatican City, could intervene at any time to stop the trial or pardon Mr Gabriele.

The BBC's David Willey, in Rome, says some Vatican observers believe Mr Gabriele may be the scapegoat for a wider conspiracy to smear certain of the Pope's top aides.

The highly sensitive media leaks, dubbed "Vatileaks", have been an evident embarrassment to the Pope, prompting the rare investigation, our correspondent says.

The scandal has dominated the columns of Italian newspapers, filling TV programmes and magazines.

The controversy began in January, when investigative journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi published letters from a former top Vatican administrator begging the Pope not to transfer him for having exposed alleged corruption.

Other leaked documents concerned "poison pen" memos criticising Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the pope's number two, and the reporting of suspicious payments by the Vatican Bank.

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