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Vatican freezes funds of cleric accused over cash transfers

The Vatican has frozen funds belonging to the senior cleric at the center of a suspected money laundering operation as part of an investigation into the case and could extend the inquiry to other individuals, the city state said on Friday.

The chief justice official in the tiny city state ordered that funds held in the Vatican bank by Monsignor Nunzio Scarano, accused of involvement in a plot to smuggle 20 million euros in cash into Italy, should be frozen as an inquiry into suspect transactions.

"The inquiries may also be extended to other persons," a statement from the Vatican said.

[Source: Reuters, Rome, 12Jul13]

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