ROME – The head of the Vatican bank is under investigation for suspected money laundering and police have frozen 23 million euros ($30.21 million) of its funds, Italian judicial sources said on Tuesday.
Neither Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, who has been at the helm of the bank for a year, nor the Vatican spokesman would comment immediately on the case, which involves alleged violations of European Union money laundering regulations.
The sources said Gotti Tedeschi and another executive of the Institute for Religious Works (IOR), as the bank is officially known, had been put under investigation by Rome magistrates Nello Rossi and Stefano Fava.
The sources said Italy’s financial police had preventively frozen 23 million euros of the IOR’s funds in an account in an Italian bank in Rome.
Two recent transfers from an IOR account in the Italian bank were deemed suspicious by financial police and blocked.
One was a transfer of 20 million euros to a German branch of a U.S. bank and another of 3 million euros to an Italian bank.
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