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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis abolishes life sentences and approves new laws on child abuse

Even though these crimes were already punishable, these updated laws offer further clarification about the procedure the judges need to follow in specific situations. GIUSEPPE DALLA TORREPresident, Vatican Tribunal“As in other legal orders, these crimes were already addressed, but in general. Now the law is much more precise. It features child-pornography, for example, something that obviously wasn?t included in the 1889 code.” The new laws are directed to both individuals and legal subjects. The norms are to be enforced both in the Vatican State and for those who work for the Holy See, even if they commit a crime outside the walls of the Vatican.Also, from now on, even crimes against the security of air or maritime navigation will be prosecuted by the Holy See. In this way, no-one who commits these types of crimes in other countries can ask the Vatican for asylum. GIUSEPPE DALLA TORREPresident, Vatican Tribunal“The issue is not just about someone who is a citizen or connected to the Vatican City State or the Holy See committing a crime. It can also be useful to address the possibility to extradite someone who has committed a crime but who is currently inside Vatican territory. ;These modifications and updates were devised under the pontificate of Benedict XVI, and have now been implemented by Pope Francis.The Vatican also announced that new norms will be issued later in the year to address the measures Moneyval calls the Holy See to implement against money-laundering.BBMG-VM-BNup:SCar