The Financial Intelligence Authority said it received 150 suspicious activities reports in 2017, down from 207 in 2016 and a peak of 544 in 2015.
The Vatican issued a statement after the comments spread on social media, saying they did not properly reflect what the pope had said.
Francis said: “These people sacrifice themselves to protect the pope, to protect the people, to make sure some crazy guy does not do something, a massacre, and ruins many families.
The outspoken 86-year-old former bishop has been one of the loudest opponents of a proposed rapprochement between the Vatican and China, which broke off diplomatic relations in 1951.
Francis attributed miracles to the two saints-to-be, removing the last obstacles to their canonization, the Vatican said in a Wednesday statement.
“I can confirm that the Holy Father meets sex abuse victims several times a month, both individually and in groups,’’ Vatican spokesman Grek Burke said in a statement.
Police, who put much of the centre of the city under lock-down for the visit, said two people were detained after demonstrators tried to break through cordons to get closer to the Vatican from an authorized protest several blocks away.
Francis, who is facing strong resistance to administrative and pastoral reforms, has in previous years used the annual speech to launch scathing attacks on corruption and malpractice within Vatican walls.
Giuseppe Profiti, former president and Massimo Spina, treasurer of the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, are charged with spending 422,000 Euros (481,000 dollars) in 2013 and 2014.
However, diplomats and Vatican sources cautioned that the trip could be put in jeopardy or parts of it changed if the security situation worsened
“There is corruption in the Vatican, but I am at peace, if there is a problem, I write a note to St Joseph and put it under a statue I have in my room,” the pontiff told 140 superiors of male religious orders at a November 2016 meeting
Some 30 homeless people, both Italian and foreign, are being allowed to sleep in St Calisto Church and its adjoining buildings in Rome’s Trastevere neighborhood
Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski, a former Vatican Ambassador to the Dominican Republic, has been placed under house arrest over sexual abuse of children.
Two Italian men, aged 30 and 41, are believed to have picked up the car and driven it to Spain where they allegedly collected four kilos of cocaine and between 150 and 200 grams of cannabis