Pope Francis appoints new Vatican Bank chief

Vatican city, (IANS/AKI) Pope Francis named banker Gian Franco Mammi the new director of the Vatican Bank, which is currently at the centre of a leaks scandal over which five people have gone on trial.

Pope Francis on Tuesday held a 20-minute meeting with Mammi and members of the governing council of the Vatican Bank (IOR), which is trying to clean up its murky image and get onto the international white list against money laundering.

IOR and the Vatican’s financial machinery have come under fresh scrutiny after two ex-members of a commission set up by the Pope in 2013 to study economic and administrative reforms allegedly stole confidential documents and leaked these to two Italian journalists.

The journalists and the two former commission members — a Vatican prelate and a laywoman — as well as the prelate’s aide went on trial on Tuesday over the leaked stolen documents.

The IOR’s former director Paolo Cipriani and his deputy Massimo Tulli resigned in 2013 over a financial scandal.

Cipriani and Tulli were indicted in a separate case a year ago on money laundering charges after a probe that in 2010 led to the freezing of 23 million euros from a Vatican account at a Rome bank. The trial continues.

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