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Lay Vatican financial expert surprised by suspension of credit-card processing

Catholic World News - January 14, 2013

Rene Bruelhart, the consultant hired by the Vatican to tackle money-laundering issues, has expressed surprise at the Bank of Italy’s decision to refuse to process electronic payments through the Vatican’s terminals.

“I’m surprised by the measures taken by the Bank of Italy blocking all the credit card services of Deutsche Bank in the Vatican,” he told the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera. “In July, the Holy See passed the third round evaluation of the Moneyval Committee of the Council of Europe with a ‘good’ report card, passing 9 of 16 ‘core and key’ recommendations.”

“So the Vatican was not subject to any special measures for monitoring money laundering, neither by Moneyval nor by any other international body,” he added. “We don’t have problems with other European countries. On the contrary, we have close collaboration. No other country in the world has adopted similar measures. I repeat, therefore, that I’m truly surprised.”

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