Quantcast
Connect with us

Cardinal Pell ‘returning to Rome’ after rival falls

Published

on

George Pell AFP / William WEST

Australian Cardinal George Pell was reportedly to return to Rome Tuesday for the first time since being acquitted of sexual abuse charges, just days after a known Vatican rival was ousted.

Pell, 79, a former high-powered Vatican treasurer tasked by Pope Francis to clean up the Vatican’s finances, spent more than a year in prison before he was acquitted and freed by Australia’s High Court in April.

ADVERTISEMENT

He has not been back to Rome since leaving in mid-2017 to face charges for assaulting two choirboys in the late 1990s.

His slated return comes less than a week after the downfall of influential Italian cardinal Angelo Becciu, who was pushed out by Pope Francis Thursday following accusations of embezzlement and nepotism.

Becciu, 72, and six others risk trial in the Vatican on corruption charges, according to the Repubblica daily.

Pell was quick to issue a statement thanking and congratulating the pope following Becciu’s forced resignation.

CathNews, a portal of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, said “sources close to Cardinal Pell” had confirmed the prelate, who has been living in his archdiocese of Sydney since his acquittal, was returning to the Italian capital.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Catholic News Agency said he would set off for Rome on Tuesday.

– ‘Big clashes’ –

Pope Francis appointed Pell in 2014 as an anti-corruption tsar at the Vatican’s Secretariat for the Economy. He quickly ruffled a lot of feathers.

“In the months before his departure (for Australia)… Pell clashed in a big way with Becciu. The heart of the matter was two different visions of how Peter’s Pence should be managed,” the Messaggero daily’s expert Franca Giansoldati said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Peter’s Pence is a yearly collection taken up around the world and destined for the poor.

On Sunday, investigative weekly L’Espresso reported that Becciu gave financier Enrico Crasso, a former manager of Credit Suisse, control over millions of euros of Vatican investment funds, including from Peter’s Pence.

ADVERTISEMENT

Becciu has been linked in particular to a controversial luxury property investment deal in London, with at least some of the money used coming from Peter’s Pence.

Crasso also manages an investment fund — Centurion Global Fund — with links to Swiss banks that are being investigated for money laundering scandals, according to the weekly.

The Vatican invested millions of euros into that fund, which lost money, while Crasso and others made millions in fees, Catholic News Agency said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Francis’ surprise decision to not only force Becciu to resign but also strip him of the rights associated with being a cardinal — a very rare punishment — came just before a fresh review by Moneyval, according to the Stampa daily.

The anti-money-laundering monitoring body of the Council of Europe, expected in the Vatican this week, is expected to rule whether the Vatican has reformed its finances enough to get onto a “white list” of states that respect international fraud rules.

© 2020 AFP


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

2020 Election

Ivanka celebratory wedding anniversary tweet flooded with reminders of Times Square billboards ripping couple over COVID

Published

on

Ivanka Trump attempted to celebrate her wedding anniversary with Jared Kushner on Sunday afternoon with a tweet stating, "11 incredible years... with forever to go! Happy anniversary my love!" and it did not go well, coming on the weekend when she and her "love" became embroiled in a legal threat to go after the Lincoln Project over critical billboards of the couple currently on display in Times Square.

Continue Reading

2020 Election

Amy Coney Barrett confirmation will destroy the court’s ‘legitimacy’ for years to come: former Anthony Kennedy clerks

Published

on

Jamie Crooks and Samir Deger-Sen are both lawyers who clerked for Justice Anthony Kennedy, a lifelong conservative appointed to the Supreme Court by President Ronald Reagan. Crooks and Deger-Sen are now urging the Senate not to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett or any nominee until after the presidential election. "Rushing through a confirmation with an election underway threatens the very legitimacy of the court," they wrote in a joint op-ed for The New York Times Sunday.

Continue Reading
 

2020 Election

Black voters who sat out 2016 are ready to boot ‘ignorant’ Donald Trump ‘come hell or high water’: report

Published

on

In 2016, “I didn’t like either of the candidates," said Jason Hooper of Greensboro, North Carolina.

Turns out, Hooper wasn't the only one with this perspective. According to Pew Research, Black voter turnout declined in 2016 for the first time in 20 years, down from 66.2 percent to 59.6 percent. Things are different this year, though. Washington Post-ABC News national polls conducted late last month and early this month found Biden leading Trump among African American likely voters, 92 percent to 8 percent. So if Black voters who stayed home four years ago turn out this year, Biden could swing back the states that Trump narrowly won against Hillary Clinton, no matter what happens with the White vote.

Continue Reading
 
 
Democracy is in peril. Invest in progressive news. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free. LEARN MORE