At the center of the growing Vatican money-laundering scandal is Gotti Tedeschi, who fell afoul of powerful players within the Church for seemingly investigating financial crimes too closely upon becoming head of the Vatican Bank. This is an incredible story that is sure to only grow in scope, and of course America’s number one criminal organization, JP Morgan, finds itself squarely in the middle of it all. This is a lengthy but must read article…
The pope had apparently tasked the financial executive with making the Vatican bank more transparent. But by approaching his task with perhaps an excess of zeal Gotti Tedeschi upset powerful forces within the Roman Curia, the Vatican’s administrative and judicial apparatus. Several high-ranking officials within the Curia viewed the bank, officially known as the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), as something akin to a trust company for clandestine monetary transactions that is not only used by the Church, but allegedly also by the mafia as well as corrupt politicians and companies. In one of the seized Gotti Tedeschi memos, he wrote: “I’ve seen things in the Vatican that scare me.”
A role in the effort was played by a bank in Benedict’s home country: Germany. In 2009, the same year that Gotti Tedeschi took over as president of the IOR, the bank set up an account with the Milan-based branch of the American bank JPMorgan Chase. From that point on, millions started flowing on an almost daily basis from JPMorgan’s Milan office to the one in Frankfurt, where the IOR also had a JPMorgan account.
The transfers via JP Morgan would likely have remained unnoticed if the IOR hadn’t involved another Italian bank two years earlier in two cases. The attention of Italian financial regulators had been attracted by curious transactions the Vatican bank had made via Credito Artigiano. In 2010, a total of €23 million had been transferred from several accounts at that bank, but without listing the account holders or purposes of the transfers. Of that, €20 million was reportedly supposed to make its way to the Vatican’s JPMorgan account in Frankfurt, while the remaining €3 million was destined for an account at another bank in Rome.
Read the full article here.