Monsignor Nunzio Scarano insists he never stole in a letter to the Anti-Christ
Priest at centre of Vatican money scandal insists he ‘never stole’ in letter to Pope
The priest at the centre of a Vatican money scandal has written to Pope Francis proclaiming his innocence and accusing cardinals of covering up abuse inside the Holy See.
By Josephine McKenna, Rome 7:56PM BST 25 Jul 2013
Monsignor Nunzio Scarano was arrested in Rome last month over allegations he conspired with a former Italian spy and a financial broker to smuggle £17 million from Switzerland on a private jet.
The 61-year-old prelate worked for APSA, the body responsible for administering Vatican property, and his two accounts at the Vatican bank, officially known as the Institute of Religious Works (IOR), have now been frozen.
Monsignor Scarano is the subject of two inquiries in Rome and Salerno, his home city, and remains in custody after authorities rejected his requests to be released on bail.
In a lengthy letter to Pope Francis published by Italian media on Thursday, the prelate said documents he possessed would prove his honesty.
“I never laundered dirty money, I never stole. I was looking to help those who asked for help,” Monsignor Scarano said in the letter, which was written from his cell at the Regina Coeli prison in Rome on July 20.
He also said he would expose “all the battles against the abuse of my secular superiors, that were covered up and protected by several cardinals” and claimed to have “sought help” from the highest echelons at the Vatican in the past.
He said he had asked help “many times” from Cardinal Stanwislao Dziwisz, personal secretary of Pope John Paul II and had also sought an audience with Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the powerful head of the college of cardinals.
Dubbed by his colleagues “Monsignor 500” for carrying a wallet full of 500 euro notes, Monsignor Scarano has insisted he committed no crime when he allegedly tried to import the cash from Switzerland for the wealthy D’Amico family.
He said he accepted donations from the family in the past but told the Pope that he did not have a joint IOR account with shipping owner Cesare D’Amico and the family had never requested that.