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Former Vatican official cleared of plotting to smuggle millions of euros into Italy

Mgr Nunzio Scarano (AP)

A former Vatican accountant has been cleared of corruption and plotting to smuggle millions of euros into Italy via a tax evasion scheme.

Mgr Nunzio Scarano was chief accountant for Apsa, which manages the Vatican’s property portfolio, until his arrest in 2013.

At a court in Rome, Mgr Scarano was found innocent of corruption and attempted money-smuggling but was convicted of making false accusations against one of his co-defendants, and was handed a two-year suspended sentence.

Mgr Scarano had denied plotting to transport €20 million (£15.2 million) in untaxed cash on a private plane from Switzerland to Italy.

A financial broker and a former intelligence agent were also allegedly involved in the plot, prosecutors claimed, but the agent was not able to carry out the plan.

Mgr Scarano is currently still on trial on separate charges in his hometown of Salerno. He is accused of laundering money using Vatican bank accounts.