Vatileaks: The trial begins on September 29

Source: FSSPX News

The former butler of Benedict XVI, Paolo Gabriele.

The trial of Paolo Gabriele, former majordomo [butler] of Benedict XVI, and of Claudio Sciarpelletti, an employee of the Secretariat of State, will commence on September 29, 2012.  The two men will be tried respectively for aggravated theft and complicity within the context of the “Vatileaks” affair (see DICI no. 256).  The spokesman of the Vatican, Fr. Federico Lombardi, explained that the trial would take place in the courtroom of the tribunal of the Vatican City State and would be open to the press.

Having been accused of aggravated theft, the majordomo runs the risk of between one and six years in prison.  The computer technician charged with receiving stolen goods “risks little or nothing”, Fr. Federico Lombardi anticipated.

On August 13, 2012, excerpts from the hearings conducted during the investigation were made public by the Vatican courts of justice.  The world thus learned the reasons that drove the majordomo of Benedict XVI to act:  “Even though I did not know what would be the outcome of my initiative [which consisted of divulging the contents of documents through an intermediary, the Italian journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi], I wanted to do something that would help, somehow or other, people inside the Vatican to get out of the situation in which they were living.  From the position where I found myself, I could observe the twofold papal office, as head of the Church and as head of the State.  In particular in the case of the latter office, I saw deliberate obstruction in the management of certain Vatican mechanisms, or at any rate a scandal to the faith.  I realized that the Pope was uninformed or poorly informed on certain points.  With the help of other persons like Nuzzi, I thought that I could see things more clearly.”

Paolo Gabriele said that he was guided in his actions by the Holy Spirit:  “Seeing evil and corruption everywhere in the Church, I arrived, in these recent times of degeneracy, at a point of no return, and I was no longer held back by my inhibitions.  I was sure that a shock, including media coverage, could be salutary so as to put the Church back on track.  On the other hand, I was always interested by media issues.  I thought that somehow this role came to me from the Holy Spirit, by whom I felt that I was inspired.”

Paolo Gabriele tells also about his first meeting with the Italian journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi.  He had made contact by internet:  “That meeting, which took place in October or November of 2011, lasted a short time because, knowing that I was taking risks, I feared being recognized by someone.  I had told Nuzzi that I did not want to have telephone contacts, for fear of supervision.  He invited me to his place for another meeting.”

On the occasion of the publication of the French edition of his book, the Transalpine [Italian] journalist confirmed to the French press that the majordomo had “helped” him:  “I can tell you now.  He forwarded to me photocopies of secret documents.  But he is not my only source, and I will say no more about it.”

For their part, several Italian daily newspapers mentioned around twenty potential suspects.  Fr. Ciro Benedettini, from the Press Office of the Holy See, told the Catholic news agency I.Media on August 28 that this number put out by the media had “no foundation”.  Fr. Benedettini admitted, however, that according to the contents of the sentence passed on August 13 by the Vatican’s investigating judge, one could deduce that the persons designated by the letters “W” and “X” or even “Y” were among the suspects.  “W” and “X” had forwarded envelopes to Claudio Sciarpelletti, the computer technician at the Vatican who is suspected of having been Paolo Gabriele’s accomplice.  Fr. Federico Lombardi explained that the Vatican had resorted to using letters of the alphabet so as to respect the anonymity of the witnesses who had been interrogated during the investigation.

In his indictment, Nicola Piccardi, the Vatican promoter of justice (procurator), explains that the investigation has not been completed.  He considers that “as the judges are organizing the case, it is now possible to conclude the formal discovery process by limiting it exclusively to the crime of aggravated theft and to the accused parties Paolo Gabriele and Claudio Sciarpelletti.  The investigation remains open, of course, concerning other criminal acts with which the aforementioned accused parties and/or other persons are charged.”  (Sources:  apic/imedia/Le Point/Le Nouvel Observateur – DICI no. 261 dated September 28, 2012)