How are money laundering businesses caught

Vatican Bank also served private individuals

Vatican City / Rome - New allegations against the Vatican Bank: According to newspaper reports, investigators have refuted the representation of the financial institution officially known as the Istituto per le Opere di Religione (IOR), according to which all account holders belong to religious orders or the clergy. "There are also private individuals who, because of their special relationship with the Holy See, can invest money and open accounts," the Corriere della Sera quoted from an investigative document.

In addition, according to the findings, the Vatican Bank did not adequately check its customers and approved transfers of large sums in someone else's name, which made illegal transactions easier. Other Italian credit institutions, on the other hand, would have to be accused of having accepted IOR transfers and forwarded them to third banks without checking the origin of the money. "The IOR can easily be used to launder money acquired through criminal activity," sums up the investigation report quoted.

Dubious money transfers

The investigation focused in particular on a € 23 million transfer from the Vatican Bank in September 2010 to the Credito Artigiano credit institution: € 20 million of this was transferred to the JP Morgan financial institution in Frankfurt and € 3 million to the Banca del Fucino. Because the transfer was signed by the then IOR director Paolo Cipriani and his deputy Massimo Tulli, the public prosecutor is now preparing an indictment. According to the newspaper La Repubblica, they are also charged with a dozen dubious small-scale transfers of money to JP Morgan.

Cipriani and Tulli resigned on Monday. However, according to media reports, they did not resign voluntarily. Its official business is initially carried out by the President of the Vatican Bank, the German Ernst von Freyberg, who was appointed to the Vatican in February to steer the bank in a more serious direction. With more than 110 employees, the bank manages around 19,000 accounts and has total assets of five billion euros. Most recently it showed a net profit of 86.6 million euros. (APA, 7/7/2013)