$30 Million Vatican Bank Scandal Helps Holocaust Survivors
Rome: Tuesday’s seizure of $30 million dollars from the secretive Vatican Bank (Institute for Religious Works) by the Italian Financial Police and a money laundering investigation of the top men at the bank has shook up the Holy See. While these were not the first or most spectacular allegations against the Pope’s Bank it does give cause for hope to a group of elderly Holocaust survivors and their heirs from former Yugoslavia.
A ten year long lawsuit against the Vatican Bank over Holocaust victim gold deposited at the bank was dismissed last year by a US Federal Court – not on the facts but on the legal argument the Vatican Bank was immune from lawsuit as a sovereign organ of the Holy See.
The Italian seizure and criminal investigation is the first time the scandal plagued bank has been successfully interdicted. Two months ago the Holocaust survivors filed similar money laundering allegations with the European Central Bank in Frankfurt on grounds that Second World War era victim gold from the Vatican Bank deposits may have been used in the minting of gold Vatican Euros or used on the Vatican Bank balance sheet to support the Vatican Euro program. The Vatican agreed to oversight by the European Union when it became part of the Euro Zone.
According to the Holocaust survivors’ attorney, Dr. Jonathan Levy, the European Central Bank was first contacted in early July but has yet to respond to the allegation that Vatican Bank money laundering and possession of concentration camp gold is in violation of the EU Vatican Monetary Treaty. This week’s allegation strengthens the credibility of Holocaust survivors’ claims against the bank.
Dr. Levy has indicated that if the European Central Bank does not act in the next few weeks, he will take the matter to the European General Court.
For more information contact:
Dr. Jonathan Levy
Attorney & Solicitor
1629 K Street NW Suite 300
Washington DC 20006 USA
Vatican Bank plaintiffs include these organizations: