Ex-Vatican bank head jailed for laundering

Petra KaminskyAAP
A court in the Vatican has convicted Angelo Caloia on charges of embezzlement and money laundering.
Camera IconA court in the Vatican has convicted Angelo Caloia on charges of embezzlement and money laundering.

A Vatican court has sentenced the former president of the church bank, Angelo Caloia, and his ex-lawyer each to nearly nine years in jail for money laundering and embezzlement.

Caloia, 81, former head of the Institute for Works of Religion, as the Vatican bank is known, and his former lawyer Gabriele Liuzzo, 97, were sentenced to eight years and 11 months in prison.

Liuzzo's son, Lamberto, was also found guilty for aiding and abetting and was sentenced to five years and two months in prison.

Lawyers for Caloia said that they would file an appeal.

The trial, which has been ongoing since May 2018, revolves around dubious real estate deals involving millions of euros stashed away.

According to the Vatican, 29 real estate sales in the 2000s had been sold for far under market value.

During the proceedings, damages to the Vatican were estimated at more than 50 million euros ($A78 million).

The convicted are to pay back 20 million euros as compensation and large amounts have already been frozen and are to be confiscated.

Caloia was head of the Vatican bank for some two decades, until 2009.

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