The financial police of Milan arrested this afternoon, at the request of the Holy See, Cecilica Marogna, the ‘spy’ of Cardinal Becciu, who is accused of embezzlement for the alleged delivery, by Cardinal Becciu, of million euros to create a ‘parallel diplomatic network’ at the service of the then Substitute for the Secretary of State. For the first time in a long time, although the case is very reminiscent of the arrest of Lucio Ángel Vallejo Balda and Francesca Chaouqui, Italy will extradite the woman to the Vatican. It would be the first time that the Vatican has requested the extradition of an Italian lay woman.
The economist is accused of embezzlement by distraction. In a recent interview with Emiliano Fittipaldi, Marogna admitted to having received this amount (between 500 and 600,000 euros) to cover the expenses of his unofficial ‘diplomatic’ work. Investigators at the Holy See suspect that this money went to luxury items, such as handbags and jewelry. The arrest was carried out by order of Interpol.
The 39-year-old Italian worked for at least four years for Cardinal Becciu, defenestrated on September 24 by Pope Francis after uncovering a possible money-laundering machinery of the Vatican Secretariat of State and the Obolus of Saint Peter in different tax havens, and with several epicenters in Rome, Malta or London. In the British capital, the network bought several luxury properties, such as the palace on Sloane Square, or part of the biopic inspired by the life of Elton John, Rocketman.
As soon as the news was known, which could involve his own arrest, Angelo Becciu defended himself, explaining that he thought the money was used to negotiate the release of some missionaries kidnapped in Africa and Asia. “They have cheated me,” he now maintains, as the Italian media point out.
All this occurs days after the Council of Europe organism Moneyval visited the Holy See to analyze its efforts to get off the ‘black list’ of countries that finance terrorism or favor money laundering. Pope Francis, upon receiving the experts, assured that he would “expel” the “merchants from the temple.” It seems he was serious.
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