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Pope's butler says he is innocent of aggravated theft and acted alone

2012-10-02

FR. Federico Lombardi
Vatican spokesman
"The butler said he had no economic interest in leaking the documents. He said he was motivated by a feeling of personal distress. He said he was guilty of betraying the Pope and the trust the Pope had in him.”

According to the former butler, the Pope wasn't always completely informed by others. He said he grew worried during the daily lunch he had with the Pope, when he saw it was easy to manipulate him.

He also said he would make copies of the confidential documents during work hours out in the open. He said the copies were made inside the office of the Pope's personal secretary.

As far as money, Gabriele said he was never paid and money was never a motivation. On the contrary the leaks,  he said, have only caused him problems.

The Pope's personal secretary,  Georg Gaenswein also took the witness stand.

He said he had always trusted the butler, but he became suspicious, when letters that were addressed to him, were leaked. Especially since those documents, had never left his office.

The hearing brought to light alleged mistreatment of the butler during the first two weeks of his arrest. By means of a court order, the Vatican's prosecutor has opened an investigation into the Vatican's police department, also known as the Gendarmerie. They want to clarify why "Paoletto" spent about 15 days in a small cell where he couldn't extend his arms and the light was constantly on.

The Vatican's police said he was offered a sleep masked but he denied it, because the light, he argued, kept him company.

Furthermore, the butler always had lunch with police officers, he had known over the years. He always rejected offers to exercise at their Vatican gym and  was given a daily hour to be outdoors. They argue, his family also had unlimited visitation rights.

Even though the Vatican was hoping to close the Vatileaks chapter, it seems that its outdated judicial system, is not making it any easier. The trial is expected to end on October 6th.  

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