BREAKING: Arrest in “VatiLeaks” case

From CNS:

The Vatican police have arrested an individual in possession of private Vatican documents in connection to the so-called “VatiLeaks” scandal that began in January.

“This person now is being questioned by the Vatican magistrates for further information,” said Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, who declined to name the person.

He told reporters May 25 that the Vatican gendarmes “identified a person illicitly in possession of private documents.” The committee of three cardinals Pope Benedict XVI appointed in April to look into the leaks had asked the gendarmes to investigate.

In response to questions, Passionist Father Ciro Benedettini, assistant director of the Vatican press office, said the suspect was “under arrest.” However, he declined to say if or where the person was being held.

Dozens of private letters to Pope Benedict and other confidential Vatican correspondence and reports, including encrypted cables from Vatican embassies around the world, were leaked to an Italian journalist, Gianluigi Nuzzi. He published the documents in a book, “Your Holiness,” released May 17.

Read more. And stay tuned.


  1. It was apparently a layman who worked in the Pope’s private chambers… a very sad situation of a person who probably had a need to feel important. Enter a greedy and unethical news source willing to exploit mostly benign Vatican documents, and media MAGIC!

  2. Oregon Catholic says:

    Between the legal action against Benetton and now this arrest my head hasn’t stopped spinning from how gosh darn faaaassst the Vatican can act when it comes to protecting itself. As opposed to decades and decades of inaction on clergy abuses and scandals.

    And now we are seeing firings at the Vatican Bank. Can’t help but wonder how related the two are and whether some lay people are going to be taking a fall for others.

  3. naturgesetz says:

    It’s really getting tiresome to have the clergy abuse scandals thrown up whenever the Church is in the news. Is it because people can’t think of anything worthwhile to say, but they feel some inner compulsion to try to be derogatory?

  4. my thoughts exactly. Some people have a one track mind and call themselves Catholic.

  5. Katie Angel says:

    I think it may be more that people are still feeling incredibly hurt by what happened and how badly it was handled. The betrayal of trust is bone-deep and, with so few apologies by the abusers or their protectors and the seeming lack of consequences for many of the clergy involved, there are a lot of people who are still incredibly angry. It is hard to find any kind of closure when there appears to be very little, if any, remorse for the devastation caused and instances of abuse keep showing up. It would be wonderful if we could all forgive the abusers and their protectors, even without their public expression of regret and request for forgiveness, but that is extremely difficult to do.

  6. Oregon Catholic says:

    IMO it’s no more tiresome than apologist assertions that we should all be so over and done with the topic because they are ‘tired’ of it. I’m beyond tired of it too but I’m not in denial that the corruption, sexual and otherwise, we constantly hear about on an almost daily basis isn’t all of a piece.

  7. naturgesetz says:

    I have been aware of multiple expressions of regret from the bishops, and occasionally even from abusers.

  8. To those members of the Deacon’s Bench Community who have expressed being tired of hearing about the clergy abuse scandal in our Church:

    I would prefer that you had written something like this:

    I don’t like (or it bothers me) to hear the topic brought up, but I can understand the outrage and feelings of betrayal that cause you to remember it.

  9. Oregon Catholic says:

    I just want to add that there is the Catholic Church that the Holy Spirit protects which I love beyond words. And then there are some catholics and institutions, even within the highest reaches of our Church, that I not only have no respect for but actual contempt. I know not to confuse the two which is why I can remain Catholic. If I sometimes don’t make that clear that’s my fault and I apologize.

  10. “The betrayal of trust is bone-deep and, with so few apologies by the abusers or their protectors”

    I hope you are not serious with that comment. Too few apologies? How many times have the last 2 Popes apologized?

  11. “even within the highest reaches of our Church, ”

    Yeah, even one of the Apostles was corrupt. That Judas, I am still not over what he did.

  12. No, I don’t understand the outrage nor do I think that every fault or failure in the humanity of those who lead this Church is connected to the sex abuse. That a corrupt lay employee in the Vatican leaked private infor has nothing to do with the abuse scandal.
    For all the finger pointing at the Bishops of today, how many of them were running dioceses in the 50s, 60s, 70s or 80s when most of this stuff happened??? What makes me tierd is the self righteous commentary from the sinless, perfect “Catholics’ who constantly harp on it.

  13. Oregon Catholic says:

    I’ll tell you how I think they are connected RomCath. The abuse itself, the cover-up of scandal and abuse, the corruption of power and wealth, all of which are still present in the Church today, have their origin in love of self and self-interest, and attachment to things of this world first and foremost before the things of God – the antithesis of the Gospel of Jesus. When that happens in the Church we should all take notice and no one should be making excuses or apologies for it.

    Now you can go back to closing your eyes and ears and singing la, la, la ….

  14. Barbara P says:

    No real information on whether he was allegedly acting alone or perhaps as part of a larger group within the Vatican. It is interesting though that the police are not disclosing his name or even where he is being held.

  15. Oregon Catholic says:

    The other interesting thing is that it’s the Vatican gendarmes who arrested him. I don’t think they are answerable to anyone outside of Vatican City so don’t expect to get any info except what they choose to share. This may scare others in the know into silence or it could have just the opposite effect.

  16. Bill Logan says:

    According to John Allen, Italian news outlets are reporting that the person arrested was one of the pope’s butlers?! I suspect that this man is just a scapegoat.

  17. “It’s really getting tiresome to have the clergy abuse scandals thrown up whenever the Church is in the news. Is it because people can’t think of anything worthwhile to say, but they feel some inner compulsion to try to be derogatory?”

    When people are tired, they can take a nap. It’s actually up to the victims and their allies to determine when it’s time to shush on sex abuse and cover-up.

    It is indeed amazing how quickly Rome can move when it wants to. That Sicilian bishop who wasn’t even indicted. Then consider Bishops Finn, George, Walsh, and others who diverged from their own conference’s plan for action on predators.

    As a parent of a teen whose peers were leered by a priest under Bishop Finn, I can tell you that we take episcopal compliance with basic morality very, very seriously. Especially when it comes to our children and their faith lives. I’d love to have a chat with my former bishop and suggest how he might take steps to remove that millstone from around his neck.

    I suspect some of the impatience with episcopal critics stems from the obvious lack of a connection between one’s professed “orthodoxy” and one’s moral conduct. I’ve long accepted that people sin because of poor to evil choices, and not because of ideology, or that they wrap themselves in some sort of mantle of faithfulness. I think once the Catholic commentariat gets beyond that sense of self-righteousness, we’ll probably see a bit of a thaw on the blogs.

  18. “the corruption of power and wealth, all of which are still present in the Church today”

    And since we are the Church it exists in you too. I really hope you don’t believe all that crap you wrote. Now go back and bash the Church and the Bishops some more.

  19. “I can tell you that we take episcopal compliance with basic morality very, very seriously.”

    I am sure that they are very happy to know that. I hope you take your basic morality just as seriously and put down the stones.

  20. The pen is mightier than the stone.

  21. naturgesetz says:


    And do you mean you think he didn’t do it (on what basis?) or that you think somebody (who?) put him up to it?

  22. Well yours isn’t

  23. Barbara P says:

    I’m curious as to what happens to him now since he is under arrest by the Vatican and what rights he has in the process. Does he have the right to an attorney? Is there a trial? If so is it a public trial or closed? Is there a jail at the Vatican?

  24. pagansister says:

    The Catholic Church is a huge organization, supposedly run by one man, who is put into that supreme post by a group of other high officials. Over the centuries there must be many secrets between the smaller groups etc. and all those groups looking out for themselves. Sure, I expect their jobs are to ultimately help whatever pope is in power, but I suspect there have been/still are many men who know how to work their way into higher positions. Not unlike a huge corporation/business. The fellow(the Pope’s butler?) who has been arrested may be the tip of the ice burg as I can’t believe just one person in that huge group has all the information given out to the public. I suspect there are many more who have spilled secrets too—for whatever reason. This should be interesting to follow as to who will try him—since the Vatican is a little city unto itself apparently. Do they have a prison for their lawbreakers?

  25. Ronald King says:

    Oregon Catholic, I agree with you. If they cannot see the depth of sin within the Church that you and I love then nothing we say will convince them. A lack of empathy and an abundance of defensiveness prevents the spiritual insight into the darkness that permeates the physical structure of the Church.

  26. Ronald King says:

    Are they attempting to “kill the messenger”?

  27. pagansister says:

    RomCath, would there even be a faith for you to belong to called Christianity if it hadn’t been for Judas? If indeed he hadn’t betrayed Jesus, all the rest might not have happened. Judas played his part well.

Leave a Comment