U.S. and British leaders were aware to some extent of the murderous efforts of the Ustashi regime against the Serbs, Jews, and Sinti-Romani peoples living in Croat- controlled territory. It is not clear if the Allied leaders clearly grasped that as many as 700,000 victims, most of them Serbs, had been killed at the Ustasha death camps at Jasenovac and elsewhere by the most ruthless and primitive methods, including mass shootings, clubbings, and decapitation.5 U.S. authorities clearly had an understanding of what was happening to the Serbs in territory under Ustasha control if not to the Jews and Sinti-Romani people.
... Postwar reports indicated that some portion of the treasury of the Ustasha regime comprised the valuables stolen from the dispossessed and deported victims of the Ustashi ethnic cleansing campaign. U.S. intelligence experts concluded after the War that Ustasha leaders at one time had at their disposal more than $80 million (350 million Swiss francs), mostly composed of gold coins, some of which were plundered from the victims of the Croatian Holocaust.11 Other unevaluated reports in the early 1950s suggested that the treasury was smaller and its disposition less certain. In 1944 the Ustasha regime began to move assets into Swiss bank accounts for safekeeping.12 On May 31, 1944, the Swiss National Bank accepted 358 kilograms of gold (worth approximately $403,000) from Croatia, and another 980 kilograms (worth $1.1 million) on August 4, 1944.
... U.S. intelligence became aware that transfers of some sort were going on by the end of 1944. The OSS Mission in Bern reported that 500 kilograms of gold bars ($562,500) with German markings had been brought to Switzerland from Zagreb, and the Croat State Bank had deposited 2.5 million Swiss francs ($580,000) in another account in Switzerland. An OSS report in July 1945 concluded that Croat-owned commercial accounts in Bern totaled more than 400,000 Swiss francs ($93,000), and other Croat accounts contained deposits of Croatian and Austrian currency. A U.S. intelligence report commenting on the arrival in Argentina in 1949 of Franjo Cvijic, the wartime head of the Croat State Bank who had been in Switzerland at the end of the War negotiating commercial agreements, indicated that the Ustasha regime assets in 1945 included 2.5 million Swiss francs in currency (about $580,000), 1,700 kilograms of gold in bars (about $1.9 million), and about 40,000 kilograms of silver (about $915,000). According to a postwar Belgrade press report, the Croat State Bank deposited 1,000 kilograms of gold ($1.1 million) in Switzerland during the War. Other U.S. intelligence reports noted that the Swiss Government froze Croatian Government accounts in Swiss banks at the end of the War worth a total of 15-16 million Swiss francs ($3.5-3.7 million) in part as compensation for outstanding Croatian debts. U.S. intelligence officers were of the view that all the puppet Croatian government funds moved to Switzerland had been controlled by Dr. Josip Cabas, an official of the Croatian Ministry of National Economy and later the Chief of the Croatian Commercial delegation in Switzerland. After the War Cabas reportedly sought to use the Ustasha funds, amounting to 12-16 million Swiss francs, to purchase arms for the Communist Yugoslav Government, but the Swiss resisted, preferring to use the funds to pay old debts.
According to information gathered at various times by U.S. intelligence, the College of San Girolamo degli Illirici in Rome, which provided living quarters for Croatian priests studying at the Vatican during and after World War II, was a center of Ustasha covert activity and a Croatian "underground" that helped Ustasha refugees and war criminals to escape Europe after the War. British intelligence information of March 1946 also identified San Girolamo as the church for the Ustashi managed by a brotherhood of Croatian priests, the "confraternita di San Girolama." This brotherhood issued identity cards with false names to the fugitive Ustashi, allowing them to evade arrest or detention by the Allies. Monsignor Juraj Madjerec, identified in intelligence reports as an Ustasha supporter, was head of the College, but the prime mover behind this Ustasha activity in Rome was the secretary of the College, Father Dr. Krunoslav Stefano Dragonovic, who was also an Ustasha colonel and former official of the Croat "Ministry for Internal Colonization," the agency responsible for the confiscation of Serb property in Bosnia and Hercegovina. Regarded by U.S. intelligence officers as Ante Pavelic’s "alter ego," the Croatian- born Father Dragonovic had been a Professor of Theology at Zagreb University. In 1943 he went to Rome allegedly as the representative of the Croatian Red Cross, but probably to coordinate Ustasha affairs in Italy. Taking advantage of contacts inside the International Red Cross and other refugee and relief organizations, Dragonovic helped Ustasha fugitives emigrate illegally to South America by providing temporary shelter and false identity documents, and by arranging onward transport, primarily to Argentina. U.S. intelligence reports make much of Father Dragonovic’s role in helping the Ustashi who sought protection in Rome after the War. He was also reportedly entrusted with the safeguarding of the archives of the Ustasha Legation in Rome, which he hid somewhere in the Vatican, as well as with all the valuables brought out of Croatia by the fleeing Ustashi.