... from Dr. Robert Moynihan, editor of Inside the Vatican magazine, via his Moynihan Report:
No we know the reasoning of the Vatican's judges in the ongoing "Vatileaks" case.
three-judge Vatican tribunal that convicted the Pope's former butler of
stealing sensitive papal documents today issued its written explanation
of how it reached its October 6 verdict against Paolo Gabriele.
said Gabriele's crime was a "reprehensible" violation of trust that
damaged the Pope himself and the rights of the Holy See, of the Vatican
City State, and of the entire Catholic Church.
what they termed Gabriele's "simplistic" intellectual capacity, the
judges agreed that Gabriele did think he was doing the right thing by
leaking the documents.
admitted during his trial three weeks ago that, while working closely
with Pope Benedict and his two personal secretaries, he had photocopied
documents, then given them to an Italian journalist for publication. His
reason? Not for money, he testified, but to somehow bring to Pope
Benedict's attention the "evil and corruption" around him, matters he
believed the Pope was not being suffiently informed about. (During the
trial, Gabriele testified that sometimes the Pope, as he ate dinner --
Paolo served the Pope his meals, and sometimes actually sat down at
table and dined with him -- the Pope would express little or no
knowledge of certain matters, especially regarding internal Vatican
affairs, that Gabriele said he felt the Pope should have been
was convicted of aggravated theft and sentenced to 18 months in prison,
currently being served under house arrest (he lives in an apartment
inside Vatican City with his wife and three chidlren).
Father Federico Lombardi, head of the Vatican press office, said today that a papal pardon of Gabriele is still a possibility.
a pardon seems less likely now than several weeks ago, when some were
expecting the Pope to pardon Gabriele immediately after the verdict and
sentencing. That did not happen. So it is possible that he will actually
be confined for the next year and half.
Father Lombardi noted that the investigation into Gabriele remains open
and that prosecutors could still charge him with other, different
judges in their written explanation said Gabriele betrayed the "good
name" of all the people involved in the case, and that secrecy owed to
the Pope in his role as a sovereign.
observers saw this as a hint at the direction Vatican prosecutors may
take if they pursue further charges against the former butler.
Gabriele's attorney has decided not to appeal the verdict or sentence.
previously the Vatican had said Gabriele would serve his 18 months in
an Italian prison, because the Vatican itself does not have a long-term
detention facility, the Vatican today said Gabriele will be kept in a
room inside the barracks of the Vatican gendarmes, not in an Italian
seems intended to keep Gabriele from talking to people outside of the
Vatican, for example, other prisoners in an Italian prison.
Moynihan also reports that a second defendant was named in this "Vatileaks" case: "Claudio
Sciarpelletti, 48, a computer expert in the Vatican's Secretariat of
State. Sciarpelletti was accused of aiding and abetting Gabriele's crime. He has said through his lawyer that he is innocent."
Sciarpelletti's trial is due to start November 5th. For more, visit the Moynihan Report page.