Trial starts of Paulo Gabriele, Vatican’s former butler

The Telegraph (United Kingdom)

Vatican gendarmes investigating the theft of compromising documents by the Pope’s butler, Paolo Gabriele, took away 82 boxes of material during searches of his apartment and other addresses, the first day of his trial heard on Saturday.

By Nick Squires, Vatican City
1:18PM BST 29 Sep 2012

In one of the biggest scandals to shake the seven-year papacy of Benedict XVI, Gabriele is accused of the “aggravated theft” of confidential papers, some of which were taken from the desk of the Pope himself.

In an indication of the scale of the alleged thefts, the court heard that some 82 cases of documents were taken away during searches conducted at Gabriele’s grace-and-favour apartment and also at the Pope’s summer residence, the Castel Gandolfo.

Gabriele, wearing a light grey suit and looking pale but smiling often, did not speak at the first session.

The trial was adjourned until Tuesday, when he will be questioned. The trial heard that a total of 13 people had been listed to appear as witnesses, including the Pope’s private secretary, the deputy head of the Vatican’s Swiss Guards, and the head of the Vatican Gendarmerie.

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