Pope Francis Fires Entire Board of Financial Information Authority

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By Vittorio Hernandez | June 6, 2014 1:10 PM EST

In yet another way of displaying his unorthodox method of running the Roman Catholic Church and the Vatican bureaucracy, Pope Francis fired on Thursday the entire board of the Financial Information Authority (FIA), reports News.com.au.


Pope Francis talks to reporters aboard the papal flight on his way back to the Vatican from Jerusalem May 26, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Medichini

FIA was created in 2010 to supervise and regulate the Vatican's financial activities and share financial information with other countries to comply with international anti-money laundering regulations.

The pontiff kicked out the all-Italian board of FIA which had repeated clashes with the agency's director, Rene Bruelhart, who came in 2012. The board complained that Bruelhart, a Swiss anti-money-laundering expert, kept them in the dark about FIA's activities.

The clashes led to the resignation of FIA President Cardinal Attilio Nicora in early 2014.

There was also a potential conflict of interest in the case of former board member Giuseppe Dalla Torre as president of the Vatican Tribunal since the FIA forwards suspected cases of financial wrongdoings to the tribunal's prosecutors for further probe.

The new FIA board members are from Italy, Switzerland, Singapore and the U.S. The Pope also appointed on the same day as Bruelhart's deputy Tommasso Di Ruzza. He played a major role in revising in 2012 the anti-money laundering law of the Vatican to follow international regulations and is a respected international jurist.

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Pope Francis talks to reporters aboard the papal flight on his way back to the Vatican from Jerusalem May 26, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Medichini
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