PR Chaouqui says will be in court for Vatileaks trial

'I'll fight for truth' says one of five indicted at weekend

(ANSA) - Rome, November 23 - PR expert Francesca Immacolata Chaouqui on Monday said she intends to appear in the courtroom on Tuesday for the first hearing in a Vatican trial over a document-leaking scandal in which she and five others were indicted at the weekend.
    Chaouqui was indicted with former secretary of the COSEA commission on the Holy See's economic-administrative structure Monsignor Lucio Angel Vallejo Balda, and his former assistant Nicola Maio.
    The three are charged with conspiracy to commit a crime and with removing and distributing confidential Vatican documents.
    Those indictments came together with those of two journalists, Emiliano Fittipaldi and Gianluigi Nuzzi, who are charged with using and distributing the allegedly stolen confidential information in their recent books, Avarice and Merchants in the Temple.
    On Monday Chaouqui reiterated that she is innocent.
    "I've decided that on Tuesday I'll defend myself on trial, to show that not one paper ever passed from my hands to those of a journalist, any journalist, not only Emiliano and Gianluigi," Chaouqui said on her Facebook page.
    "Maybe it won't do any good, but I'll fight like a lion so that the truth emerges".
    Monsignor Balda was arrested over the weekend of October 31 and has been in Vatican jail since that time, while Chaouqui, who was arrested and jailed at the same time, was released after agreeing to cooperate with the investigation.
    "I wouldn't surrender myself to a trial based on rules from 1923. In the end I'm an Italian citizen upon whom nothing can be imposed from the Vatican so long as I stay on Italian soil," Chaouqui said. The two journalists on Monday said they also intend to appear in court on Tuesday, Nuzzi in a tweet and Fittipaldi through a letter published in Italian daily La Repubblica.
    Italy's National Order of Journalists on Monday said that their professional code calls for journalists to "give news and not keep secrets," adding that they must "adhere to the substantial truth of the facts".


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