Pope's ex-butler, found guilty of leaking documents, moved to Vatican prison cell


Paolo Gabriele, the former butler to Pope Benedict XVI found guilty of leaking confidential documents from the pontifical apartment, was arrested and taken to a Vatican prison cell yesterday.

Following a trial this month, at which he received 18 months for theft, Gabriele had been held under house arrest. There is no prison in the Vatican city so he was moved to a cell in the city’s one police station.

Gabriele’s arrest was accompanied by a statement from the secretariat of state saying the sentencing marked the end of “a sad event”. The secretariat conceded the affair had harmed the pope and also betrayed the confidentiality of the faithful who contacted him.

Yesterday’s note said Gabriele could yet benefit from a papal pardon but only if he made “a sincere request for pardon”.