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Friday, 25 October, 2002, 14:53 GMT 15:53 UK
Vatican banker 'was murdered'
A panel of forensic experts appointed by judges in Rome to investigate the death of a top financier found hanging from a bridge in London 20 years ago says he was murdered.

The scientists say Roberto Calvi, who was nicknamed God's Banker for his close ties to the Vatican, could not have killed himself as originally suggested.

They said his neck showed no evidence of the injuries usually associated with death by hanging and his hands had never touched the stones found in the pockets of his clothes.

Mr Calvi's body was found days after the suspicious collapse of the Vatican-controlled Banco Ambrosiano.

The case developed into one of the biggest political and financial scandals of the post-war era in Italy, with widespread speculation about mafia involvement and links to a shadowy Masonic group, known as P2.

Mr Calvi's body was exhumed four years ago, following his family's insistence that he had been killed.

The judicial authorities, who commissioned the forensic report, have not confirmed its conclusions, which have been widely reported by the Italian media.

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