TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Police: Pope wanted documents destroyed

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, 10:05 p.m.
 

VATICAN CITY — Vatican police said on Wednesday they found thousands of documents hidden inside the home of Pope Benedict XVI's former butler, including original documents signed by the pope bearing indications they should be destroyed.

The police officers testified in the trial of Paolo Gabriele, the pope's once-trusted butler who faces four years in prison if convicted of aggravated theft for allegedly stealing papal documents and leaking them.

Prosecutors have said Gabriele, a devout 46-year-old father of three, confessed to leaking copies of the documents to journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi because he wanted to expose the “evil and corruption” in the church to help put it back on the right path.

The documents have ignited an uproar, for they revealed infighting and alleged corruption in the Vatican as the pope grows older and more frail. The security breach has been one of the most damaging scandals of Benedict's seven-year papacy.

Gabriele said Tuesday he stood by his June 5 confession and acknowledged he betrayed the pope's trust, but he nevertheless pleaded innocent to the charge of aggravated theft.

The final four witnesses in the trial were heard Wednesday and closing arguments are set for Saturday, when a verdict by the three-judge Vatican panel is expected.

A separate Vatican investigation began Tuesday after Gabriele's attorney complained that her client endured improper detention conditions during his first 20 days in jail.

On Wednesday, the officer in charge of Gabriele's care defended his treatment and said Gabriele “repeatedly” thanked him for taking such good care of him and his family.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Penguins acquire defensemen Lovejoy, Cole in deadline deals
  2. Power play shines in Penguins’ home victory over Blue Jackets
  3. Pirates starting pitcher Worley is in right place, right time with team
  4. Icy roads bring numerous accidents in Western Pa.
  5. No tag for Worilds; Steelers cut Moore
  6. Penguins forwards struggle in loss to Avalanche
  7. Teacher conduct under spotlight in Pennsylvania
  8. Pirates sickened by pic of ‘Jihadi John’ wearing Bucs ball cap
  9. Passion for speed fuels Ligonier man’s slippery dash in winter rally
  10. Greensburg pair jailed in convenience store robbery
  11. Starkey: In defense of Mel Kiper Jr.