The former head of the Pope's security, implicated in the disappearance of a teenage girl

The former head of the Pope's security, implicated in the disappearance of a teenage girl

Domenico Giani, the head of papal security in the last two decades, could be behind the plot that concealed the disappearance, in 1983, of the adolescent Emanuela Orlandi, as denounced by Giancarlo Capaldo, former Italian prosecutor and manager, in his moment, to investigate the case for the transalpine justice. On June 22, 1983, Emanuela was returning home from a flute class and was last seen at a bus stop in central Rome.

Speaking to the Italian magazine OggiCapaldo revealed how the Holy See appointed two interlocutors to collaborate in the clarification of the disappearance and possible murder of Orlandi, the 15-year-old daughter of a Vatican official whose family resided in the small city-state. Who were they? Neither more nor less than Domenico Giani, head of the Vatican Gendarmerie, and his number two, Costanzo Alessandrini, both dismissed in 2019, after the leak of information on the investigation of the financial and real estate operations of the Secretary of State, which today maintains on the bench, among others, the almighty Cardinal Angelo Becciu.

The magistrate held, during 2012, several meetings with his two interlocutors, which broke up abruptly, without further explanation. "The relationship with the interlocutors appointed by the Vatican was interrupted and there was no possibility of working with them. I do not know the causes of such an abrupt stop," explained Capaldo.

Over the four decades since Orlandi's disappearance, the Vatican bank, the Mafia (the Magliana clan), the secret services of several countries, and even Alí Agca, the terrorist, have been implicated. Turkish man who tried to assassinate John Paul II in 1981.

The truth is that, if Capaldo's account was true, the Holy See refused to collaborate with the Italian justice for the resolution of the case. So why did Rome try to collaborate in 2012? According to the Italian press, to cover up another scandal, that of the burial of Renatino de Pedis, one of the leaders of the Banda de la Magliana, in the Basilica of San Apolinar. One of the mobster's mistresses confessed that he had assured her that he was the one who ordered Orlandi's kidnapping. The Italian magistracy ended up opening De Pedis's grave, finding the remains of another person in a box. A later analysis determined that these were not those of Emanuella Orlandi.

"Two people from the Vatican, who were important at that time, asked me to exhume De Pedis' body in order to remove a corpse that was too uncomfortable," Capaldo revealed. After no trace of Orlandi was found, a new prosecutor in Rome took the reins of the case, and ended up closing it in 2015, against the family's discretion. It was, neither more nor less, than Giusseppe Pignatone, who today serves as president of the Vatican City State Court, the one in charge of trying and, where appropriate, sentencing, those involved in the 'Becciu case'. Two stories, that of Orlandi and that of the financial scandals of the Secretary of State, which each time seem more closely linked.

A few months ago, the Secretary of State gave permission to reopen the case and analyze the remains of several bodies buried in the Teutonic cemetery in Rome., but no remains of Emanuela Orlandi were found either. His brother Pietro assures that "everyone in the Vatican knows what happened."

Former prosecutor Capaldo adds that "apart from the relatives, there was no interest in investigating" Orlandi's disappearance. Since then, the family has not stopped urging the Vatican to collaborate to clarify a truth in which the mafia, drug trafficking or even the prostitution of minors in the Vatican are mixed. Forty years later, the body of the adolescent still does not appear, but her ghost continues to wander through the darkest corridors of the Vatican curia.

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