* Home, office of ex-Vatican bank head searched this week
* Dossier was prepared by Gotti Tedeschi to defend himself
* Passed on to prosecutors in money laundering case
(Adds lawyer's comment)
By Laura Viggiano
NAPLES, Italy, June 7 Italian police searching
the home and office of Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, the former head of
the Vatican's bank, have found a confidential dossier relating
to his three-year tenure as the bank's president, a judicial
source said on Thursday.
The dossier appeared to have been put together by Gotti
Tedeschi to defend himself from allegations over his
mismanagement of the bank.
Gotti Tedeschi was ousted from his position as head of the
Vatican's Institute for Works of Religion (IOR) on May 24 after
the bank's board passed a motion of no-confidence, accusing him
of neglecting his basic management responsibilities.
The unusually abrupt dismissal, which followed the arrest of
the pope's butler for allegedly stealing confidential papal
documents, was the culmination of a leaks scandal that has
shaken the Vatican since January.
Police searched his home in Piacenza and office in Milan,
both in northern Italy, on Tuesday on the orders of Naples
prosecutors investigating alleged corruption and bribes by
defence group Finmeccanica.
The Naples prosecutors and the Vatican said the Finmeccanica
probe, for which Gotti Tedeschi was not placed under
investigation, had nothing to do with the Vatican's bank.
The judicial source said the dossier found during the
searches had been passed on to prosecutors in Rome investigating
separate money-laundering allegations involving the IOR.
The source described Gotti Tedeschi, who was questioned by
Naples and Rome magistrates on Wednesday, as "extremely
worried". Italian newspapers have said that, following his
sacking, he "fears for his life".
Gotti Tedeschi's lawyer, Fabio Palazzo, said police had
conficated "notes" that his client believed would be useful to
counter the accusations made by the board of the Vatican bank
when it voted its no-confidence motion.
Gotti Tedeschi and the IOR director general, Paolo Cipriani,
were caught up in an investigation in 2010 when the bank failed
to explain the origin of 23 million euros which the Vatican bank
transferred between accounts it held in two other banks.
The bank said at the time that it had done nothing wrong and
was merely transferring its own money between its own accounts.
Prosecutors initially froze the funds, but later unblocked
Gotti Tedeschi told Reuters after his dismissal from IOR
that he had paid for his efforts to improve transparency at the
bank and make it comply with international anti-money-laundering
standards. The Vatican has denied this, saying he was
ineffective, divisive and an obstacle to transparency.
Gotti Tedeschi, a 67-year-old conservative Catholic, sits on
the board of Italy's state financial holding Cassa Depositi e
Prestiti and is chairman of the Italian retail banking
operations of Spain's Banco Santander.
(Writing by Silvia Aloisi; Editing by Philip Pullella and