Vatican Bank head ousted as Holy See fights scandal

The Vatican Bank ousted its president on Thursday after he failed to clean up the image of an institution that has come to symbolise the opacity and scandal gripping the Holy See's administration.

Ettore Gotti Tedeschi was forced to resign "for failing to carry out duties of primary importance," the Holy See said in a statement.

The president was ousted in the wake of a series of financial scandals as the Vatican tries to clean up its image and put a stop to a leak of documents.

"The board passed a unanimous no-confidence vote against the president... and believes the action is important to maintain the vitality" of the bank, the Vatican said, as internal divisions over transparency came to a head.

Gotti Tedeschi, an expert on financial ethics, was put in charge of the bank -- also known as the Institute for Religious Works (IOR) -- in 2009, in an effort on the part of the Vatican to rid the institution of scandal.

Moneyval, the Council of Europe's experts on anti-money laundering, is due to rule at the beginning of July on the whether the Holy See has managed to clean up its act and meet international monetary standards.

But the former head of Spanish bank Santander's Italian operations tasked with bringing transparency to the bank came under suspicion in 2010 when he was investigated as part of an inquiry by magistrates into money-laundering.

Gotti Tedeschi, 67, was accused of violating laws set up in 2007 that tightened rules on disclosure of financial operations to the Italian central bank in a bid to stamp out money laundering.

He was more recently also suspected of leaking documents and accused in some quarters of serving his own interests.

The board said it would seek a president who could "help the institute establish efficient and extensive relations between it and the financial community based on mutual respect of accepted international banking standards."

For now, Deputy President Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz will take over the reigns.

Gotti Tedeschi's exit comes at a tense time for the Vatican, which has had to deal over the past months with a series of leaks of sensitive documents and accusations of corruption and fraud splashed over the Italian press.

In the wake of the 2010 scandal -- which saw an Italian court temporarily seize 23 million euros ($33 million) from the IOR -- Pope Benedict XVI created a new financial authority to "prevent and oppose illegal financial activity."

The aim was to get the Vatican on to the "white list" of financially virtuous countries, but internal tensions sprang up after the Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone pushed for the new transparency law to be watered down.

It is not the first time that the IOR, which administers accounts held by religious orders, cardinals, bishops, priests and nuns, has made the headlines.

In 1982 IOR was caught up in one of Italy's biggest fraud cases when Milan's Banco Ambrosiano -- of which it was the main shareholder -- collapsed.

Banco Ambrosiano's chairman Roberto Calvi, known as "God's Banker" because of his ties with the Vatican, was found hanging from a London bridge.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Philippines to fly over disputed South China Sea: Aquino
    Philippines to fly over disputed South China Sea: Aquino

    Philippine military and commercial aircraft will keep flying over disputed areas in the South China Sea despite Chinese warnings over the airspace, President Benigno Aquino said on Monday. "We will still fly the routes that we fly based on the international law from the various conventions we entered into," Aquino told reporters when asked whether the Philippines accepted China's position. The Chinese military last week ordered a US Navy P-8 Poseidon surveillance plane away from airspace …

  • Philippines seeks stronger commitment from U.S. in South China Sea dispute
    Philippines seeks stronger commitment from U.S. in South China Sea dispute

    The Philippines is seeking a "stronger commitment" from the United States to help its ally, the defence minister said on Monday, as China asserts its sovereignty over disputed areas of the South China Sea. China claims most of the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year, and the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei have overlapping claims. China said on Monday it had lodged a complaint with the United States over a U.S. spy plane that flew …

  • Aquino: Philippines to fly usual routes over disputed reefs

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Philippine aircraft will continue to fly their usual routes over disputed reefs in the South China Sea, the country's president said Monday, defying China's challenges to its planes and those of the United States. …

  • Mitsubishi reaches out to far-flung Batad community
    Mitsubishi reaches out to far-flung Batad community

    A “Dadbod” is a newly coined term now trending in media. It was introduced to the world by Clemson University sophomore Mackenzie Pearson as she refers to any man—father or bachelor—with a physique that’s a “nice balance between a beer gut and working out.” “It’s more human, natural, and attractive,” she adds. For this writer, […] The post Mitsubishi reaches out to far-flung Batad community appeared first on Carmudi Philippines. …

  • A weekend of premium cars
    A weekend of premium cars

    Good news to all luxury car fanatics as PGA Cars, the exclusive importer and distributor of Audi, Porsche, Lamborghini and Bentley cars in the country, will be holding the PGA Cars Premium Festival from May 29 to May 31 at the PGA Center in Global City in Taguig. The 3-day event will showcase PGA’s latest […] The post A weekend of premium cars appeared first on Carmudi Philippines. …

  • APEC ministers to endorse Boracay Action Agenda
    APEC ministers to endorse Boracay Action Agenda

    Trade ministers at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in Boracay, Aklan agreed yesterday to endorse the proposed Boracay Action Agenda to the member countries’ leaders, presenting opportunities for global trade for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). In a press conference following the conclusion of the APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting, Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, who also served as chairman, said ministers agreed to recommend the adoption of the …

  • Talks with China over sea row urged
    Talks with China over sea row urged

    The Philippines should engage China in bilateral talks in its efforts to maintain peace and order at the disputed West Philippine Sea, Sen. Francis Escudero said yesterday. Escudero supports the government’s move to bring the issue before international arbitration but also stressed the need for the Philippines to pursue talks with China. Escudero made the statement after UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Friday called for a peaceful solution to territorial disputes in the South China Sea. …

  • House panel tackles bill on regular disaster drills
    House panel tackles bill on regular disaster drills

    The House committee on national defense is deliberating on a measure mandating the regular conduct of disaster risk reduction drills in educational institutions nationwide. Authored by Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr., the bill mandates that risk reduction drills be held annually in all educational institutions throughout the country in coordination with the schools’ respective local government units. “The Philippines’ location along the Pacific Ring of Fire and close to the equator …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options