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Vatileaks II Trial Continues

Next hearing set for May 24

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On Saturday 14 May, at 9.30 a.m. a further hearing was held in the ongoing trial for the dissemination of reserved information and documents in Vatican City State Tribunal, according to information provided by the director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J.
It was attended by the members of the Tribunal (Professors Giuseppe Dalla Torre, Piero Antonio Bonnet, Paolo Papanti-Pelletier and Venerando Marano), the Promoter of Justice (Professors Gian Pietro Milano and Roberto Zannotti), and the defendants, Ángel Lucio Vallejo Balda, Francesca Immacolata Chaouqui and Nicola Maio, whereas the defendants Emiliano Fittipaldi and Gianluigi Nuzzi were absent. All five respective legal representatives were present: Emanuela Bellardini, Laura Sgrò, Rita Claudia Baffioni, Lucia Teresa Musso and Roberto Palombi.
The hearing was dedicated fully to the further examination of witnesses, and at the beginning of the hearing an Ordinance was read by which the Tribunal ruled that three of the witnesses requested by Chaouqui’s defence – Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló, archpriest of the Basilica of St. Mary Major, and Archbishop Konrad Krajewski, Almoner of His Holiness – would not be present. Indeed, the Chancellor had received communications from aforementioned three prelates, in which they declared that they would invoke article 248, paragraph 2 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, according to which public officials shall not be compelled to give evidence of what has been confided to them as part of their duty, other than in cases in which the law expressly obliges them to inform the public authorities. However, Cardinal Parolin added that he wished to specify that he did not have any information to refer regarding the issue for which he was cited as a witness, namely the relationship between the defendants Vallejo Balda and Chaouqui.
Therefore, the testimonies of three witnesses were heard: Bishop Augusto Paolo Lojudice, auxiliary of Rome, requested by Chaouqui’s defence; Roberto Minotti, former head of information technology at the Prefecture for Economic Affairs at the time of the events in question; and Msgr. Alfredo Abbondi, official at the same Prefecture, requested as witnesses by the Promoter of Justice. The witnesses answered questions from the Promoter of Justice, the counsels for the defence and the panel of judges.
Following the interrogation of each witness, the respective report was read and approved. The hearing ended shortly before 3 p.m.
This morning, at around 11 a.m., a further hearing was held.
At the beginning of the session, the president read the following Order of the Court: “Considering the deposition of the deputy commissioner Gianluca Gauzzi Broccoletti during the hearing of 16 May 2016; given that outcomes emerged that, although present in the seized information and computer appliances, were not known by the Promoter of Justice and the defendants; that Article 400 of the Code of Criminal Procedure provides for the acquisition for the proceedings of the documentation shown by the witness during his testimony; the Promoter of Justice and the counsels for the defence may present requests exclusively in relation to the aforementioned documentation during the hearing of 24 May 2016 at 3.30 p.m.; the session shall be dedicated to the examination of the witnesses Gianluca Gauzzi Broccoletti and Stefano De Santis, and expert witnesses (17.5.2016)”.
The report of the declaration made yesterday afternoon by the witness Gianluca Gauzzi Broccoletti was read and approved. The session was concluded shortly after 11.30 a.m. and, as indicated in the order, the next hearing will take place on 24 May at 3.30 p.m.
Note: Article 400 paragraph 2 of the Code of Criminal Procedure to situations in which manifestly influential evidence emerges during the discussion.
The session held yesterday afternoon was dedicated to the further interrogation of witnesses. Although summoned, Mario Benotti and Paolo Mondani were not present, and the President asked the counsels for the defence of Msgr. Vallejo Balda and the Promoter of Justice whether to continue with further summons. They answered that they were willing to renounce their testimony for reasons of procedural economy.
The four witnesses present were therefore examined: Fabio Schiaffi, official of the Protocol of the Prefecture of Economic Affairs, requested by the Promoter of Justice; Professor Lucia Ercoli, health official of Vatican City State and Msgr. Vittorio Trani, chaplain of the Regina Coeli prison, requested by the defence for Chaouqui; and Gianluca Gauzzi Broccoletti, commissioner of the Gendarme Corps Vatican City State Gendarme Corps, who performed the forensic analysis of information and computer appliances seized during investigations, requested by the Promoter of Justice. The witnesses responded to questioning by the Promoter of Justice, the counsels for the defence and the panel of judges.
Following the interrogation of each witness, the respective report was read and approved. Since the deposition of the witness Gauzzi was prolonged and needed more time, at 7.15 p.m. the President of the Tribunal adjourned the hearing until 11 a.m. the following day, for the continuation of the examination of witnesses.

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