Venerdì, 19 Ottobre 2018
ROME

Jailed prelate says innocent in letter to Pope

English
© ANSA

Rome, July 25 - The Vatican prelate arrested for
alleged involvement in a bid to bring 20 million euros into
Italy illegally has written to Pope Francis to say he is
innocent.
"I never laundered dirty money, I never stole, I tried to
help someone who asked for help," Mons. Nunzio Scarano wrote in
a letter from Rome's Regina Coeli prison dated July 20.
Scarano, who until recently led a key Vatican accounting
unit, was arrested in June in a probe over allegations he
conspired with a former Italian spy and a financial
broker to try to secretly repatriate the cash, allegedly the
fruit of tax evasion by a family close to the prelate.
The prelate, from the port city of Salerno near Naples, had
been suspended a month before his arrest from his job as head of
analytic accounts at the Holy See's asset-management agency APSA
after being named in a separate probe into receiving money in
Salerno.
Police reportedly started sifting through his assets
because of his suspiciously large financial holdings and
artistic trove.
He was arrested June 28 on suspicion of planning to elude
customs controls along with Giovanni Maria Zito, a recently
transferred agent in the AISI domestic intelligence agency, and
financial broker Giovanni Carenzio.
Police said Scarano and Zito set up a private jet to fly
the cash for three Salerno-based shipowner brothers, the
D'Amicos, whose family was friendly with Scarano.
Zito is suspected of getting 400,000 euros for arranging
cover for the flight, which never took place.
The prelate has told prosecutors he "acted in good faith"
and was only "trying to do a favour for the D'Amicos".
The Vatican has said it would cooperate "fully" with the
probe.

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