Rome Newsroom, Jan 21, 2021 / 09:47 am
The former president of the institute commonly known as the “Vatican bank” has been given a sentence of eight years and 11 months in prison by the Vatican court.
The sentence was handed down at a hearing on Thursday by the president of the Vatican City State tribunal, Giuseppe Pignatone. The conclusion of the trial, which began in 2018, marks the first time that the Vatican has issued a prison sentence for financial crimes.
Angelo Caloia, 81, was president of the Institute for Religious Works -- also known by its Italian initials, IOR -- from 1989 to 2009.
Caloia, and his lawyer, 97-year-old Gabriele Liuzzo, received the prison sentence for the crimes of money-laundering and aggravated embezzlement. They were also ordered to pay a fine of 12,500 euros ($15,204).
Liuzzo’s son, Lamberto Liuzzo, 55, was sentenced to five years and two months in prison and ordered to pay a fine of 8,000 euros ($9,731) for money-laundering. He was acquitted of the charge of self-laundering.
The sentences were given in the first instance, meaning that the defendants, who were not present at the hearing, may appeal. Caloia’s lawyers confirmed on Jan. 21 that they had lodged an appeal.
The Vatican court also ordered the confiscation of the 32 million euros ($39 million) which had already been seized from Caloia and Liuzzo’s IOR accounts and ordered compensation be paid to the IOR and its Italian-registered real estate company, SGIR, to the amount of about 23 million euros ($28 million), as part of a separate civil suit.