Pope says 'gay scandal' at Vatican Bank unfounded

'We checked out prelate and found nothing'

Pope says 'gay scandal' at Vatican Bank unfounded

Rome, July 29 - Pope Francis on Monday discredited reports of there being a gay prelate with "a scandalous past" at the Vatican Bank. "With regard to Monsignor Battista Ricca, I followed canon law and performed (an investigation known as) investigatio previa, and it uncovered nothing for which he's accused, we haven't found anything," the pontiff told journalists en route to Rome after a week-long visit in Brazil. Earlier this month the Italian weekly L'Espresso reported that Ricca, who was recently appointed to an office at the bank by Pope Francis, scandalized priests and nuns at the Vatican embassy in Uruguay with his amorous conduct involving a Swiss army captain from 1999 to 2001. Before his promotion to the Vatican Bank, which is formally known as the Institute for Religious Works, Ricca was in charge of Saint Martha's House, the Vatican dormitory used by staff and visitors and, since his election in March, the pope, who has eschewed the papal apartments.

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