Monday, May 27, 2013 4:57
0

(Before It’s News)

VATICAN
BANK SUED FOR ALLEGED WAR CRIMES

by Sherman H. SkolnickNote: case is Emil Alperin et al. vs. Vatican Bank et al., No. 99 C 4941, U.S.
District Court, Northern District of California, filed 11/15/99.

the lawIn apparently the first
legal action of its kind, the Vatican Bank has been sued by World War Two
victims and their heirs and beneficiaries. Brought as a class action in the
U.S. District Court in San Francisco, the initial plaintiffs are Ukranians and
ex-Soviet citizens but the affected class includes Serbians, Roma, anti-Fascist
Croatians, and Jews.
The suit seeks “an
accounting, restitution, disgorgement and to recover damages arising out of
defendant VATICAN BANK (hereinafter referred to as IOR[Instituto Per Le Opere
Di Religione,Institute for Religious Works]), the FRANCISCAN ORDER, and other
banking institutions’ and religious orders and organizations participation in a
common scheme and course of conduct:
“(1) to profit from,
both directly and indirectly, the inhumane and genocidal system instituted by
the Nazi and Ustasha ideology;
“(2) to obtain,
accept, conceal, convert and profit from assets looted by the Ustasha Regime
and deposited in, or liquidated through, the IOR, Defendant Banks, and
Franciscan organization during the ascendency of the Ustasha regime and
following the demise of the regime at the behest of former Ustasha and Nazi
leaders through the offices of the Franciscan Order; and
“(3) to retain and
convert assets deposited in their institutions by the Ustasha and the
Franciscan Order.” The suit uses the definition: “The ‘Ustasha
Regime’ is defined as the German puppet fascist government of Croatia under the
direction of its leader Ante Pavelic known as the ‘Poglavnik’ (Leader). The
Ustasha regime operated under German protectorate from 1941 through 1945 and
included numerous members of the Franciscan Order as both military and civil
functionaries”.
The Court papers state
“Among the top Nazi beneficiaries of the Croatian-Vatican treasure was
Adolph Eichmann who received a new identity as a ‘Croatian refugee’ before
being smuggled to South America.”
The suit points out
“Evidence of the extent of the defendant’s participation in wrongdoing has
only recently come to light as a result of the disclosure and declassification
of archived documents in the United States, Great Britain, Germany and other
countries, as well as from the reports of several commissions and/or task
forces created by the United States, Germany, and elsewhere and in particular
the 1997 Supplemental Report by the United States State Department: U.S. and
Allied Efforts to Recover and Restore Gold and Other Assets Stolen or Hidden by
Germany During World War II,’The Fate of the Wartime Ustasha Treasury’ released
under the auspices of Under Secretary of State Stuart E. Eizenstat.”
Among the fourteen pages
of details in the Court pleadings, “Vatican Bank…has its principal place
of business and is incorporated in Vatican City but conducts business and
financial transactions worldwide on behalf of the Roman Catholic Church including
the United States and California with total assets in excess of 3 billion
dollars. Defendant IOR engages in for-profit merchant banking transactions in
the United States, California, and elsewhere through its investments and
transactions with other banks. Defendant Franciscan Order also known as First
Order of Franciscans (O.F.M.) includes and/or included several Croatian
Franciscan Orders in California, the United States, Croatia, and Italy.”
Other eye-opening details
in the suit include: “Croatian troops assisted the German occupiers of
Ukraine in their systematic plundering and looting of Ukrainian resources and
individual property. In exchange for the Croatian assistance in Ukraine, the
Ustasha were given a free hand in Croatia and Bosnia to loot, plunder and
terrorize the non-Croatian populace. The Croatian Treasury contained plunder
from Ukraine and assets seized from the Ustasha victims in Yugoslavia. Without
the full support of Nazi Germany for its loyal ally, the Ustasha, the Ustasha
Treasury would not have been permitted to retain the profits from Ustasha
atrocities, instead these funds would have been sent to Germany.”
Further, “Upon the
demise of the Ustasha government in 1945, assets valued between 50 and 180
million dollars were transferred from the capital, Zagreb. The majority of
these funds, estimated at more than 80 million dollars were transferred to
Vatican City with the assistance of Roman Catholic clergy and in particular
members of the Franciscan order part of or sympathetic to the Ustasha.”
Moreover, “Many
officials of the Ustasha government, including the war criminals like Pavelic,
were secretly housed by the Franciscan Order in Vatican City or Rome. The
Ustasha Treasury with the assistance of IOR and Franciscans was used to resettle
the Ustasha fugitives in Spain, Argentina, the United States and other
sympathetic countries. The Ustasha were also alleged to have reaped profits in
conjunction with their Franciscan and IOR benefactors by black market
activities in post war Italy, selling Vatican and Red Cross documents to Nazi
war criminals and by acting as informants and provocateurs for various
intelligence services.”
As a class action, the
suit raises common questions of fact and law, including:
“Did the defendant
IOR knowingly or otherwise carry out banking transactions that involved capital
or assets that included looted and plundered assets of victims of the Nazi and
Ustasha Regime deposited with the IOR by the remnants of the Ustasha Regime or
the Franciscan order?
“Did the Defendants
Banks, IOR, or Franciscan Order improperly retain or convert deposited assets
of the plaintiffs to/for their own or another’s use?
“Did the defendants
knowingly aid and profit from the concealment of the Ustasha wartime Treasury?
“Did the defendants
knowingly assist fugitive war criminals from the Nazi and Ustasha regimes by
making available and providing international transfer of funds?”
Among the pleadings
“Facts Specific to IOR and Roman Catholic Religious Orders”:
“Many high officials of the Ustasha government were Roman Catholic clergy
and in particular Franciscans. The Vatican maintained an ‘Apostolic visitor’ in
Zegreb, the Croatian capital from 1941 until the end of the War. Relations
between the Vatican and the Ustasha were cordial. The Papal legate in Croatia
was Mgr. Marcone, who openly blessed the Ustasha, publicly gave the Fascist
salute, and transmitted instructions from Rome to the Croatian clergy and
episcopacy, principally concerning the forced conversions of the Eastern
Orthodox Christians.”
Among the many details of
the complaint: that the former Ustasha Treasury was used post-World War Two to
finance Nazi fugitives in exile. That the Vatican Bank to date “has
refused to account for the Ustasha related transactions despite numerous
inquiriebs from other governments and the London Conference on Nazi Gold.”

Those close to the
pending lawsuit advised us not to attract too much attention to the lawsuit on
TV in Chicago. Why? The apparent reason is the large Pro-Vatican Croatian
community in the Windy City as well as what some contend is a large number of
the Ustasha or their offspring who live in Chicago. In the 1970s, there were
many violent events between the Croat and Serb communities in Chicago,
including shootings and bombings, not well reported outside of town.
A few years ago when we
taped a one hour Cable TV Show on the subject of Bosnia and Serbia, one of the
program guests threatened to leave the studio if I raised the issue of Vatican
complicity in “ethnic cleansing” of Serbs from Croatia, by which many
thousands of Serbs were killed or injured. [Another guest did raise the issue.]
During the Kosovo War, Spring of 1999, the monopoly press said almost nothing
about the bloodshed in Croatia reportedly instigated at least in part, by the
Vatican. It is perhaps no coincidence that the Vatican Bank suit was brought in
San Francisco. Headquartered there is the Bank of America, owned jointly by the
Vatican, the Jesuits, and the Rothschilds. The parent holding company, Bank
America, has been reportedly largely bought out by the Japanese mafia, the
Yakuza. Most every bank in California is reportedly owned by the Yakuza. Seldom
mentioned by the news fakers: the Yakuza is the main force in West Coast dope
trafficking.
A possible problem in the
case getting a fair hearing and trial: Most of the judges in the federal
judiciary in California are banker-judges. Will they arbitrarily protect the
Vatican Bank and other banking institutions implicated in the case? The federal
appeals court in San Francisco is riddled with banker-judges. It is an
unpublicized situation,by the way, throughout the U.S. and throughout the
history of the federal courts in the United States.

For
some background, visit our website: http://www.skolnicksreport.com
In particular our stories, “The Vatican, the Giannini Family, and the
CIA” and “The Pope’s Three Banks in the U.S.”
Click
HERE to read an updated
version of the lawsuit.
Tom Easton CSB#109218
ORIGINAL
Jonathan H. Levy CSB#
158032         FILED
Law Office of Thomas
Dewey Easton JAN 21 2000
1335 Pebble Beach Drive
Crescent City, CA 95531

Telephone:
707-464-4513
Facsimile:
707-465-5389
Attorneys for
Plaintiffs and the Class

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
SAN FRANCISCO

EMIL ALPERIN,
JEWGENIJA ROMANOVA, MARIA DANKEWITSCH, VLADIMIR MORGUNOV, VLADIMIR BRODICH,
WILLIAM DORICH, and IGOR NAJFELD on behalf of themselves and all other persons
similarly situated; ORGANIZATION OF UKRAINIAN ANTIFASCIST RESISTANCE FIGHTERS;
and UKRAINIAN UNION OF NAZI VICTIMS AND PRISONERS, on behalf of themselves and
all others similarly situated,
Plaintiffs,
v.
VATICAN BANK,
a/k/a “INSTITUTE OF RELIGIOUS WORKS” or “ISTITUTO PER LE OPERE
DI RELIGIONE” (IOR); THE FRANCISCAN ORDER (O.F.M..) a/k/a CROATIAN
FRANCISCANS and CROATIAN COFRATERNITY OF THE COLLEGE of SAN GIROLAMO DEGLI
ILLIRICI, UNKNOWN CATHOLIC RELIGIOUS ORDERS, and their successors, UNKNOWN
RECIPIENTS OF NAZI AND USTASHA LOOT, AND SWISS, AUSTRIAN, ARGENTINE, SPANISH,
ITALIAN, PORTUGUESE, VATICAN & GERMAN BANKING INSTITUTIONS AND CALIFORNIA
AND OTHER UNITED STATES CORRESPONDENT BANKS AS DOES #1-100,
Defendants.
NO.
C99-4941 MMC

FIRST
AMENDED CLASS ACTION COMPLAINT FOR:

1.
CONVERSION;
2. UNJUST
ENRICHMENT;
3.
RESTITUTION;
4. AN
ACCOUNTING; and
5. HUMAN
RIGHTS VIOLATIONS
AND
VIOLATIONS OF
INTERNATIONAL
LAW.
JURY TRIAL
DEMANDED

INTRODUCTORY STATEMENT: NATURE OF ACTION