Pope Benedict XVI Sued For Not Wearing Popemobile Seatbelt During Visit to Freiburg, Germany
No one is above the law in Freiburg, Germany– not even “God’s” right-hand man in Rome.
Papal infallibility, it seems, doesn’t extend to minor traffic violations in this serious city tucked in the southwestern corner of the country in the state of Baden-Wurttemberg. A man there is suing Pope Benedict XVI, who rolled into town in his bulletproof Popemobile in September, for failing to buckle up. That’s right, the Popemobile, which travels at an autobahn-burning speed of 6 miles per hour (9.6 km/h), does have seat belts and His Holiness was spotted flouting road rules requiring their use.
The suit is being filed by a man from Dortmund who is asking that the Pope be fined €2,5000 (around $3,300). The mystery man behind the lawsuit has not been identified, but we can tell you that he’s not a Catholic! Attorney Johannes Christian (but apparently not a very good one) Sundermann has filed the complaint on behalf of the (overly) concerned citizen. Listed as witnesses are Baden-Wurttemberg Minister-President Winfried Kretschmann and Archbishop Robert Zolltisch.
It remains to be seen whether or not the Pope, who was born Joseph Ratzinger in next-door Bavaria, is accountable under German law or if he can claim diplomatic immunity as the head of a sovereign foreign state. My guess is that if Catholic leaders can avoid facing justice for the rape of countless thousands of children around the world, beating a minor traffic violation should be a pretty easy affair.
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