The plot was already written: Cardinal Angelo Becciu is guilty and must be condemned. He gave money to his brother, stole funds from St. Peter’s Pence, bled the Vatican coffers with unscrupulous actions such as the operation on the former Harrod’s warehouse in the Sloane Avenue 60 building in Chelsea, posh district of London. A “rotten predatory and lucrative system” set up by “unlikely if not unrealistic subjects” to draw on the resources of the Holy See thanks also to “limited but very incisive complicity and internal connivance”. Which? We should ask the actors on the stage of the trial in the Vatican, who should have recited their lines well, as expected. The commedia dell’arte, as we know, always reserves some surprises for those who, like Il Giornale, have sat down in an armchair to watch the show at the expense of an already written ending.
So what was meant to be was not. Who should have said, did not say. Whoever had to try, has not tried anything. Who had to confirm, denied. It’s like when in an Agatha Christie mystery the narrator is the culprit. How much did the London building on Sloane Avenue cost, for example? The cause of the most sensational trial ever carried out in the Vatican is devoid of fundamental information. All the defendants’ defenses already three months ago requested access to the documents. Answer: none. And hearing about the protagonists of the events (on the Palace of London and beyond) the fog, instead of clearing up, thickens.
Those who know the secret Vatican rooms admit that even Pope Francis was surprised. He who with “such a striking and practically unprecedented action”, as the Franciscan bishop Gianfranco Girotti recalls, requested and obtained Becciu’s renunciation of the rights connected to the cardinalate on 24 September two years ago on the basis of alleged “precise and highly confidential “. Now, with the news that emerged from the process underway for almost a year, the Pontiff “now knows” that the former powerful monsignor had a relationship based on the trust of the indications of the technical offices of the Secretariat of State led by Monsignor Alberto Perlasca. Head of office, real decision maker on every aspect of merit according to Becciu’s defense, Perlasca however remained out of the process. The more the hearings offer contributions, the less it is explained why he is not at the stand among the accused. In short, as the investigation progresses, the prosecution’s story seems to face more and more water. Everywhere. The President of the Court, Giuseppe Pignatone, a magistrate with over ten years of experience (whose intuitions about the Mafia Capital in Rome have only found “posthumous” confirmation, and it is a pity), has to deal in the courtroom with the frequent and sometimes angry reactions of the Promoter di Giustizia Alessandro Diddi and to the vehement protests of lawyers who often force the Court to make frequent interruptions to appease the spirits. The fault lies entirely with the journalists: they had already prepared the cross to nail Becciu, deceiving their readers. But today they are silent, perhaps out of shame. If we look at the famous Palazzo, Becciu certainly cannot pay for the mistakes made after he was replaced at the Secretariat of State. Nobody says that everything was done in the best way in the sale of the London Palace. Nor that the investment management was irreproachable (but the opposite is also to be proved). Was there a loss? There are no documented factual elements. And it would still not be sufficient to prove the crime. While the mystery remains: whoever had initiated the operation, like Perlasca, using consultants and mediators unknown to Becciu, was acquitted of all charges.
And we continue to talk about the “Angola case”. It took the deposition of the financier Raffaele Mincione to find out what was already known. Becciu had asked the Office to evaluate the possible convenience of the operation relating to the exploitation of an oil field. Receiving a negative report, he decided not to carry out the operation. «All documentally proven» say the lawyers Fabio Viglione and Maria Concetta Marzo. Yet L’Espresso, the first to shoot Becciu (“a journalistic investigation that will make an era”), had promised the revelation of a glimpse of truth “on the gigantic power struggle in the heart of the Church, on the betrayal of Pope Francis’ message , on the attempt of a group of associates to take possession of what is dearest to the faithful ». What remains of these bombastic promises? Nothing. Even Report, which followed the path of the weekly, messed up tissues and poisons in a preconceived and one-sided narrative that ignored multiple reconstructions, comparing Becciu to events that never occurred and widely denied such as the phantom requests for money from the Congregation for the causes of Saints in June 2018 (the cardinal, just to name one, will arrive only in September). And coincidentally, the Pope recently wanted to send a message to the newspapers “convulsed, in the hands of a whole world of communication, which either says half, or one part slanders the other, or one part defames the other, or a part on the tray offers scandals because people like to eat scandals, that is, eat filth ». In days we will return to the courtroom, to chase ghosts and gossip, while few know the truth. Or maybe just the Pope.
In this infinite Vatileaks, as Andrea Mainardi calls it, there are also the clashes between Becciu and George Pell, unjustly accused of pedophilia but never publicly humiliated like Becciu. There are feuds with the IOR, the Knights of Malta, the “old guard” and the “Bergogliani”. Good tea towels for a Dan Brown movie. Not for an endless trial without proof. With a guilty already written. That maybe he’s innocent too.