Pope Benedict's butler, accused of using his access to the pope to steal papers that he thought would expose Vatican corruption, suffered a blow on the first day of his trial when judges refused to admit evidence from the Church's own investigation.
Gabriele's arrest in May, after police found confidential documents in his apartment inside the Vatican, not only threw a spotlight on allegations of malpractice but also pointed to a power struggle at the highest levels of the Church.
Gabriele's lawyer had asked the court to allow as evidence the results of a separate investigation by a commission of cardinals.
But the chief judge rejected the request, saying the commission had been set up by the pope, and so its findings would be reserved for him.
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