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Vatileaks defendant: Chaouqui's threats prompted leaks

March 16, 2016

Msgr. Lucio Vallejo Balda, who has admitted to passing confidential Vatican documents to reporters, told a Vatican tribunal that he acted under pressure-- not from journalists, but from his co-defendant Francesca Chaouqui. 

The former Vatican official told the court that Chaouqui had said: "I will destroy in in all the newspapers, and you know that I can do it." Msgr. Vallejo Balda has said that Chaouqui had lured him into a compromising relationship and pressed him to provide access to the documents-- charges that Chaouqui denies.

In other testimony, Msgr. Vallejo Balda said that his former assistant, Nicola Maio, was not involved in the leaking of documents. he said that Maio had resigned before he began providing reporters with access to the confidential files.

Emiliano Fittipaldi, one of the two Italian journalists who wrote books based on confidential Vatican documents, also testified before the tribunal on March 15. He said that he had nearly completed the book before he received documents from Msgr. Vallejo Balda, and only used two of the documents leaked to him.


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  • Posted by: ElizabethD - Mar. 16, 2016 3:42 PM ET USA

    Should read "I will destroy you in all the newspapers". I believe Msgr Balda about this. It rings true. See the blog of Father George David Byers for his personal experiences a number of years ago with Italian government (specifically, Guardia di Finanza) intelligence operations and infiltration at the Vatican.