Vatican Indicts Cardinal and 9 Others on Cash Laundering and Fraud Prices

ROME – A Vatican judge on Saturday indicted 10 people, including a once powerful Italian cardinal, on charges of money laundering, fraud and abuse of office in connection with a financial scandal over a London real estate deal.

The indictment follows a two-year investigation by the Vatican Prosecutor’s Office looking into what Vatican News described as “an enormous number of documents”.

Among the defendants is Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu, the former chief of staff in the Vatican State Secretariat, the Francis released in September as the investigation into the London deal gained momentum. Cardinal Becciu has claimed his innocence.

Two former top officials of the Vatican’s secret service, officials from the State Secretariat and Italian brokers who were involved in the real estate deal were also charged. The Vatican has also filed subpoenas against four companies linked to people involved in the case.

The investigation, which began in 2019, uncovered “a vast network of relationships with financial market operators that have caused significant losses to the Vatican’s finances,” according to a statement released by the Vatican on Saturday.

In the statement, the Vatican said the judicial inquiry was “directly linked to the policies and reforms” of Pope Francis “in an attempt to achieve transparency and clean up the Vatican’s finances”.