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Vatican crackdown on tax cheats flagged in oversight report

The Vatican's financial watchdog said Thursday it received 544 reports of suspicious financial transactions last year, a three-fold increase over 2014, thanks in part to beefed-up efforts to flag potential tax cheats who are using the Vatican bank to hide money.

In its annual report, the Financial Information Authority said it passed 17 cases on to Vatican prosecutors for follow-up investigation, up from seven a year earlier. In December, European evaluators urged prosecutors to actually bring charges in some of those cases since no indictments have been handed down.

Since 2011, 34 out of 900 suspect transactions have been forwarded to prosecutors for possible...

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