The butler did it

No, really, he did, the Pope’s butler that is…its was him:

An already sordid scandal over leaked Vatican documents took a Hollywood-like turn on Saturday (local time) with confirmation that the pope’s own butler had been arrested after documents he had no business having were found in his Vatican City apartment.

The detention of butler Paolo Gabriele, one of the few members of the papal household, capped one of the most convulsive weeks in recent Vatican history and threw the Holy See into chaos as it enters a critical phase in its efforts to show the world it’s serious about complying with international norms on financial transparency.

The tumult began with the publication last weekend of a book of leaked Vatican documents detailing power struggles, political intrigue and corruption in the highest levels of Catholic Church governance. It peaked with the inglorious ouster on Thursday of the president of the Vatican bank. And it concluded with confirmation Saturday that Pope Benedict XVI’s own butler was the alleged mole feeding documents to Italian journalists in an apparent bid to discredit the pontiff’s No. 2.


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  • BJ

    Maybe they were ‘planted’ so the light doesn’t fall on someone else

  • Hang him

     It seems he was arrested by the Vaticans own police. we await a full confession shortly, Spanish Inquisition and all.

  • Jimmie

    No great surprise – this has been happening for hundreds of years. Anyone remember the time when there were 3 popes – and each pope excommunicated each other for being an antipope?

  • The Bella

    The right hand man of the story teller gets nabbed for pilfering pages, all the while the alter and choir boys are walking around unable to ride their bicycles thanks to the higher learnings they were taught by the randy old sods in the local church, great standards.

  • AnonWgtn

    He must have read Morris West’s book where the same thing happened ??? legally or.

  • Looks like someone else needs to be hung from a bridge in London?

  • Mediaan

    The book is by a journalist called Gianluigi Nuzzi and is called Sua Santita, or “Your Holiness: the secret papers of Benedict XVI”.

    The blight hitting the Vatican is fourfold.

    The head of the Vatican Bank, a Santander bank Italy chief, was put in to reassure everybody a clean- up was going to happen, because of massive crime and corruption earlier. He was an ethics expert. Now he has been ousted, with investigations into money-laundering and more.

    Second, this journalist has apparently been given documents involving stuff so secret, and so old, it affects the whole running of the Church. Now it is out there in print.

    • Mediaan

      To continue…

      Third, the Council of Europe is running an investigation of Vatican banking, through their agency Moneyval, and early July I believe it is due to make its report. This could not have blown up at a worse time. So the whole European Government is watching closely. (maybe they think with all the corruption at the Vatican that is where Europe’s money went.)

      Fourth, Italian police are re-opening the case of a 15 year old Vatican employee’s daughter who went missing two decades ago and is believed murdered. This somehow links to the tomb of an old mafia style gangster that got permission to be buried in a prominent church, and which the police want to examine.

      • Mediaan

        BTW, there is a suggestion raised in La Stampa that the private butler was too unsophisticated to have masterminded such a documents heist. He is said to be a deeply religious and simple man. His wife and daughters are also thought to be in a very difficult position, living in the Vatican, and facing the wrath of the church.

  • Mediaan

     Vatican in deep trouble?

    Watch for diversionary stories hitting world headlines, press, radio and tv info-tainment.  

    They will be massive public interest stories.  

    They had time to pre-arrange them.  They will have been set up ready, way in advance.