Vatican computer technician given suspended sentence

While the Vatican computer technician involved in the Vatileaks scandal has received a two-month suspended sentence, the committee of cardinal investigating the case is reported to have recommended a papal pardon for the Pope’s personal assistant at the centre of the scandal.

The technician, Claudio Sciarpelletti, was found guilty of aiding and abetting Pope Benedict XVI’s personal assistant, Paolo Gabriele, in the theft of confidential papal documents which were then leaked to a journalist.

The Vatican court originally gave Sciarpelletti a four-month sentence, but the term was reduced due to extenuating circumstances.

Sciarpelletti, 48, was arrested after an anonymous tip led to a search of his desk. An envelope was found addressed to Gabriele containing copies of documents that had been leaked to the Italian media

Sciarpelletti’s lawyer argued that his client was in an “emotional state” when he gave confused and contradictory testimony to investigators, leading to the charges levelled against him.

However Judge Giuseppe Dalla Torre said the court concluded Sciarpelletti helped Gabriele “elude the investigations of the authorities” at the Vatican.

In a separate trial in October, Gabriele was given an 18-month prison sentence, which he is serving in a Vatican police cell.

Meanwhile, sources close to Gabriele’s family have indicated that the committee of cardinals the Pope charged with investigating the Vatileaks case have recommended a papal pardon for him.

Earlier, after Gabriele wrote a letter of apology to Benedict XVI, the Pope sent him an autographed book of psalms.



Catholic News Agency


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