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Former Vatican official acquitted of money-smuggling charge

January 19, 2016

Msgr. Nunzio Scarano, the former chief of accounting for the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See (APSA), has been acquitted of charges of attempting to bring €20 million ($21.8 million) into Italy illegally.

The prelate was dismissed from his post in 2013 following his arrest by Italian police. He was charged with a conspiracy to bring the cash into Italy on an airplane flight. However the money was never actually transported. 

Msgr. Scarano was convicted, however, of false testimony against a co-defendant in the case. The court found that Msgr. Scarano had accused Giovanni Maria Zito, an Italian secret-service officer, of stealing nearly €200,000 from him; in fact the cleric had paid Zito that sum for his role in the plot. Msgr. Scarano received a two-year suspended sentence for that offense.

The Italian cleric faces a separate trial on money-laundering charges. 


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