The Vatican’s criminal tribunal on Saturday, July 3, reportedly indicted nine people and four companies on charges including extortion, abuse of office and fraud in connection with the Secretariat of State’s 350 million-euro investment in a London real estate venture. The tribunal president, Judge Giuseppe Pignatone, set July 27 as the trial date, according to a Vatican statement Saturday.
Four former Vatican officials, including two officials from the Secretariat of State, were indicted, as well as Italian businessmen who handled the London investment. Also indicted on alleged embezzlement charges was an Italian intelligence expert. Vatican prosecutors accuse the suspects of bilking millions of euros from the Holy See in fees and other losses related to other financial dealings. The suspects have denied wrongdoing.
Also, in a separate note, In a joint decree, three Vatican offices (the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Congregation for Clergy and the Dicastry for Laity) ordered the dissolution of the Apostolic Movement and the distribution of its assets to charity.