Home   |  About Us   |  Contacts   |  Products    
 News Items
 Top Stories
 News Briefs
 Vatican
 Origins
 Africa
 Headlines
 Also Featuring
 Movie Reviews
 Sunday Scripture
 CNS Blog
 Links to Clients
 Major Events
 2008 papal visit
 World Youth Day
 John Paul II
 For Clients
 Client Login
 CNS Insider
 We're also on ...
 Facebook
 Twitter
 RSS Feeds
 Top Stories
 Vatican
 Movie Reviews
 CNS Blog
.
 For More Info

 If you would like
 more information
 about Catholic
 News Service,
 please contact
 CNS at one of
 the following:
 cns@
 catholicnews.com
 or
 (202) 541-3250

.
 Copyright

 This material
 may not
 be published,
 broadcast,
 rewritten or
 otherwise
 distributed,
 except by
 linking to
 a page on
 this site.

.
 CNS Story:

VATICAN-LAUNDERING Sep-11-2012 (370 words) xxxi

Vatican hires finance crime expert to aid compliance with global norms

By Carol Glatz
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- In an effort to comply more fully with international standards against financial criminal activity, the Vatican has hired an outside expert in combating money laundering and financing terrorism.

Rene Brulhart, a 40-year-old Swiss international lawyer, started working as a consultant to the Vatican in September on "all matters related to anti-money laundering and financing of terrorism," Vatican Radio reported Sept. 11.

Brulhart's "role is to assist the Holy See in strengthening its framework to fight financial crimes," the broadcast reported.

Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, said in a written statement that the hire is "a powerful sign of (the Vatican's) commitment to work in this direction."

A report by European finance experts released in July said the Vatican had passed its first major test in becoming more financially transparent and compliant with international norms.

But the report by Moneyval -- the Council of Europe's Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism -- said there were still critical loopholes that needed tightening and other "important issues" to be addressed.

For example, the committee found the Vatican's own financial oversight agency, the Financial Information Authority, lacked adequate legal powers and the independence necessary to monitor, inspect and sanction all Vatican agencies and foundations based in Vatican City State that have financial dealings or commercial transactions.

Finding a well-respected, experienced professional was critical because Moneyval's recommendations "are highly technical elements that require someone with highly technical knowledge," said a source familiar with the situation.

Father Lombardi characterized Brulhart's appointment as part of the Vatican's "renewed efforts to respond to the (Moneyval) report's recommendations and ever more efficaciously pursue transparency and financial trustworthiness."

Brulhart is vice-chair of the global Egmont Group network, which brings together national Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) that collect and analyze information on suspicious or unusual financial activity, which may then be passed on to law enforcement officials.

He is also head of the Liechtenstein delegation to Moneyval and the coordinator of the Liechtenstein Task Force on Countering the Financing of Terrorism. He served as the deputy director of Lichtenstein's Financial Intelligence Unit before becoming the director of the country's FIU in 2004.

END


Copyright (c) 2012 Catholic News Service/USCCB. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed.
CNS · 3211 Fourth St NE · Washington DC 20017 · 202.541.3250