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Vatican official of high-ranking, Cardinal Becciu, resigns suddenly. However, he reveals that whatever he did was as per the instruction of Pope Francis. Becciu talks about allegations against him regarding the embezzlement of church money. He says that there are rumors about him giving money to his brothers. However, he denies all charges stating that he is not in association with any wrongdoing.
Cardinal Becciu was one of the closest associates of Pope Francis. He was working in a pivotal position in the office of the Vatican’s Secretariat of State. Later, he became part of a controversy regarding the laundering of church money. According to sources, invested the money in a luxury construction project in London. The same investment has become a significant subject of a police investigation since then.
The controversial resignation
According to the Holy See, resignations are rare when someone is working at such a high position. None of Becciu’s co-workers at the church are ready to comment on this incident presently. As per an official statement, the Holy Father received the resignation and signed in approval. During the formalities, he was at the Perfect Congregation of the Saints office.
On the contrary, the Vatican official confessed on Domani, an Italian website, that it was a forceful resignation. The reason for the same was suspects against him regarding the laundering of church money. However, the 72-year old man said he did not take even a single Euro, let alone such a significant investment. Besides, he adds that there is no ongoing investigation against him. However, if there is any, in the future, he will indeed defend himself.
Later, in a news conference, Becciu says that his resignation order was very shocking. Moreover, the Pope was suffering at the time the news broke. Besides, everything was surreal for him after the resigning order. It was unbelievable that the Pope does not suddenly trust him based on some rumors. The last time he spoke to him before this was when he thought he was the Pope’s friend. However, such mistreatment towards him was disappointing.
Becciu confesses how the Pope directly told him to resign, stating that he does not trust him anymore. Despite Becciu trying to say that the case of misappropriation was not valid. Besides, he is still willing to give an explanation to the Pope regarding everything. Becciu believes that truth will win because he is innocent.
Cardinal Becciu- let us get to know him.
Giovanni Angelo Becciu, a native Italian, spent the early part of his life serving the Vatican Diplomacy. Later, in 2011, he was appointed as the Substitute for General Affairs, a highly prestigious position. Serving in this position till 2018, he used to meet the Pope every day. In the same year, Pope Francis chose him to become the Cardinal. After that, he became the head of one of the most vital departments of the church. It is the one that takes care of beautifications and sainthoods.
Details of the property deal in London
During his tenure as the Substitute for General Affairs, Cardinal Angelo Becciu became a massive controversy. It was regarding a luxury construction deal in one of the poshest areas of London. Unique sources suggest that the purchase of the Sloane Avenue apartment block cost £155m or $200m. The same was bought out of companies and offshore funds that are in association with the church.
Last year, around five staff members, faced termination following a raid in the Secretariat office. During the attack, Vatican police officials came across several suspicious documents and computers as well. Later in June 2019, Gianluigi Torzi, an Italian businessman, was booked for embezzlement and extortion charges. Earlier this year, Becciu spoke in defense of the project, stating nothing was wrong with the deal. Besides, he also mentioned that not a single penny from the Church Funds was part of the investment.
Why was the resignation so sudden?
According to sources, the reason for such a sudden resignation may be more than the London Deal controversy. During a recent interview, Becciu spoke about his interrogation session with the Pope. It was a confrontation in which the Pope asked him about the money laundering issue. There is a Sardinian co-operative that is headed by the Cardinal’s brother Tonino Becciu. It was to help migrants and other small organizations.