Vatican official forced out in rare resignation

(BBC) – High-ranking Vatican official Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu has unexpectedly resigned but has revealed he was told to do so by Pope Francis.
He said he was suspected of giving Church money to his brothers, and denied any wrongdoing.
Cardinal Becciu was a close aide to the Pope and previously had a key job in the Vatican’s Secretariat of State.
He became involved in a controversial deal to invest in a luxury London building with Church funds.
That investment has since been the subject of a financial investigation.
Resignations at this level of the Vatican are extremely rare and the Holy See said little in its communique released late on Thursday.
“The Holy Father accepted the resignation from the office of Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and from the rights connected to the Cardinalate, presented by His Eminence Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu,” a statement said.
But the cardinal, 72, told Italian website Domani he was being forced out because he was suspected of giving Church money to his brothers. “I didn’t steal even one euro. I am not under investigation but if they send me to trial, I will defend myself,” he was quoted as saying.