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Canadian police issue arrest warrant for Vatican diplomat

Canadian police issue arrest warrant for Vatican diplomat

Ontario lawyer Robert Talach, above, has lashed out at the Vatican, alleging that it swiftly moved to protect a priest who is wanted by police in Canada where he faces child pornography charges.

According to this report, Monsignor Carlo Capella, a high-ranking Catholic diplomat, was hastily whisked from the US to the Vatican earlier this month after rumours began circulating that authorities were planning to charge him with possession of child pornography.

Ironically, Capella was slated to be part of an international conference in Rome next week focused on protecting children from online sexual exploitation and abuse.

This week Canada became involved when police issued an arrest warrant alleging Capella, 50, committed child pornography offences at an area church during the Christmas holidays.

He is wanted for accessing, possessing and distributing child pornography.

The Diocese of London, Ontario, has confirmed it has assisted in:

An investigation around suspicions involving Msgr Capella’s possible violations of child pornography laws by using a computer address at a local church.

Talach said the role of the London Diocese should stretch beyond simply assisting.

It should be making demands of the Vatican to send this guy back to face the music.

Talach, whose specialties include cases involving sexual abuse by the clergy, said the fact Capella was whisked away by the church shouldn’t come as a shock.

I’m probably the least-surprised person in the world right now. There are lots of examples of hiding either offenders or people under investigation within the walls of the Vatican.

Talach cited Bernard Prince, a Canadian priest who was promoted to a top Vatican position despite sexual abuse allegations, as an example of the church’s efforts to protect itself from scandal.

Prince was living in the Vatican when accusations of abuse began to circulate, but he was eventually sent back to Canada, where he was convicted in 2008 of sexually abusing more than a dozen boys over a 20-year period.

He was defrocked by the Catholic Church in 2009.

Talach said of Prince:

He was able to live and work and take refuge within the Vatican for a number of years. The same luxury shouldn’t be available to Capella. 

He’s wanted in a criminal matter involving children and he should be sent back for prosecution. Period.


Cardinal Pietro Parolin, above – the Vatican Secretary of State and Capella’s boss – is set to deliver the keynote speech Tuesday on “The Holy See and its commitment to combating sex abuse online” – and Capella was apparently to be part of the conference, which was organised months ago.

Panelists are to include top law enforcement and academic experts in the field of child protection and cybercrimes, with an entire morning devoted to “Child Sexual Abuse Online: Who are the offenders?”

According to this report, Canadian police declined to say if they had passed the case to Interpol or if Canada would initiate extradition proceedings. But the Vatican doesn’t extradite its citizens.

In explaining its decision to recall the diplomat the Vatican said its own criminal prosecutors were now investigating the case and seeking information from the US.

A canon lawyer, Capella is listed online as having written a 2003 paper for the Pontifical Lateran University on priestly celibacy and the church’s criminal code.

Several US church officials have complained that the Vatican was being less than transparent about the case.

The head of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, Cardinal Daniel N DiNardo, urged the Holy See to be “forthcoming with more details” about the case, a reflection of how the US church still struggles with credibility problems 15 years after the sex abuse scandal erupted in America.

10 responses to “Canadian police issue arrest warrant for Vatican diplomat”

  1. AgentCormac says:

    Shut down the RCC now.

  2. CoastalMaineBird says:

    Shut down the RCC now.
    Nuke them from orbit.
    It’s the only way to be sure.

  3. CoastalMaineBird says:

    I sort of like this development, but I’ll like it a whole lot more when the police don’t let the RCC abscond with them, and have one (or more) in irons.

  4. Broga says:

    So? To be expected. The Vatican, with its Cardinals strutting their stuff in dresses and mouthing bullshit, is shameless in its defence of its paedophiles and pornographers. They know they can get away with it.

    The C.of E. has no cause to be pleased with itself. Has the mouthy Carey been called t account yet by Welby who, my wife tells me, was bollocking the BBC this morning about its tolerance for Jimmy Saville.

  5. agender says:

    Years ago I read about a Norwegian (or perhaps Swedish) policeman who has an eidetic memory for faces – even those he has only seen on photographs.
    Why can Interpol not borrow this policeman to patroul the borders of the Vatican “state” and as soon they stick a nose out of their hol/y hiding place serve a warrant or arrest them on the spot?

  6. Johan says:

    Indeed, according to the BBC news website Welby said that the BBC was far worse than the rcc and the Coe for hiding the appalling Savill,a catholic by the way, and for the disparity in gender pay. Fucking unbelievable. A clear indication that Gods conduit to Anglicans is clearly in need of psychiatric help.

  7. barriejohn says:

    Broga/Johan: I didn’t mention that story as I sent it to Barry first thing this morning, and was wondering whether he was going to use it. Welby’s accusations beggar belief!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41449299

    There was an excellent interview on BBC News with a survivor of abuse, but I can’t locate it on their site ATM.

  8. Broga says:

    Welby has totally lost the plot. He seems to think that because he is Archbishop he can pronounce what is right and what is wrong and because he decided then it must be so.

    Would he be prepared to debate his pronouncements with an articulate opponent? I doubt it. Hit and run is his tactic.

  9. AgentCormac says:

    Nuke them from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.

    Nice sci-fi reference there, CoastalMaineBird!

  10. StephenJP says:

    So much going on here:

    – Cardinal Parolin’s speech on “the holy see and its commitment to combating sex abuse online”: a. shouldn’t take more than about 8 seconds; b. elides what they are doing to combat sex abuse in real life, in their churches, which is damn all.

    – the AB of Cant: yes to all the above: mote and beam, Archbishop, mote and beam!

    – it never ceases to astonish me that the diplomatic status of the Vatican is still accepted as a given across the world. If they can get into the UN, why not the Two Holy Places? Why not the Mafia? There’s a certain overlap, after all.