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Vatican bank head attributes money-laundering complaint to 'procedural error'

Catholic World News - September 22, 2010

Describing himself as “deeply humiliated” by a money-laundering investigation, the president of the Vatican bank has said that a “procedural error” was responsible for triggering the Italian government probe.

Etore Gotti Tedeschi, the president of the Institute for Religious Works (IOR), said that officials at the Vatican bank had failed to provide proper documentation for fund transfers to an account in another institution, the Credito Artigiano. But he insisted that the investigation would prove the transfers were entirely legitimate.

Gotti Tedeschi told reporters that since taking over leadership of the IOR in 2009 he had “committed my whole self…to make every transaction more transparent.” The Vatican bank president said that his staff was working “to enter the so-called White -- the list of countries that comply with international anti-money laundering-- and we hope to do so by December.” For that reason, he said, the failure to follow proper procedures with the Credito Artigiano transfers was especially painful. But he expressed disappointment that the error “has been used as an excuse to attack the Institute, its president and, more generally, the Vatican.”

The Vatican Secretariat of State, meanwhile, issued a statement expressing “complete confidence in the president and the director general” of the IOR. The statement added that “the authorities of the Holy See have repeatedly expressed their desire for complete transparency regarding the financial activities” of the IOR.

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  • Posted by: Obregon - Sep. 22, 2010 10:47 PM ET USA

    "he expressed disappointment that the error “has been used as an excuse to attack the Institute, its president and, more generally, the Vatican.” No kidding! And this is exactly the motivation behind the news. After a triumphal papal trip to England, the enemies of the Church need to invent an incredible scandal to tarnish the Church once more and raise a cloud of suspicion after the successful visit of the Pope. Now, can I prove this? Unfortunately "no!"

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