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Catholic World News

Profile of Vatican's secular tribunals

January 18, 2013

L’Espresso offers a rare and interesting look at the Vatican’s system of secular justice.

The Vatican’s tribunals are much busier than might be expected for such a small city-state. But the overwhelming majority of the cases brought before the Vatican’s secular courts involve outsiders, such as pickpockets who prey on tourists. This year, however, the courts were particularly busy because of a rare high-profile criminal case, the “Vatileaks” trial, and because of cases involving the implementation of strict new Vatican regulations involving financial transfers.

The Vatican’s justice system is also complicated, L’Espresso observes, because of the necessity for constant cooperation with police and prosecutors of the city of Rome—cooperation that often involves a degree of friction over jurisdictional claims.


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