The Vatican trial involving Francesca Immacolata Chaouqui has come to an end:
A nine-month trial against three former Vatican officials and two journalists for the leaking of confidential financial information came to an end on Thursday, with only one of the five accused going to prison, Monsignor Angel Lucio Vallejo Balda, who was sentenced to 18 months.
However, it is possible that Vallejo Balda’s sentence could be reduced to time served because he confessed his offense during the trial. A Vatican spokesman said Thursday he believes, but couldn’t confirm, the time he’s already served will be considered as part of the sentence.
Public relations consultant Francesca Chaouqui, the woman at the heart of the trial, was sentenced to 10 months. The tribunal declared that there was not enough evidence to prove that she had leaked confidential documents, but there was enough to accuse her of conspiring to do so.
However, her sentence was suspended for five years, meaning that if she doesn’t commit another crime under Vatican law, she gets a get-out-of-jail free card.
The other three who were on trial were Italian layman Nicola Maio, who together with Vallejo Balda and Chaouqui were members of a dismantled Vatican commission, and reporters Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi.
Maio was declared innocent, and according to the tribunal, the two journalists fall outside of Vatican jurisdiction, because they’re not residents nor were they ever employees.
Go here to read the rest. The trial was enlivened by allegations from Balda that Francesca Immacolata Chaouqui had temped him into sex with her, allegations that the pregnant Chaouqui scornfully denied. Balda also alleged that she was a spy for Italian intelligence, something that Chaouqui also denied. Go here to read more posts on the colorful Vatican career of Ms. Chaouqui. It would really help if the Vatican could stop employing people who act as if they are characters in a badly written Italian sex farce.