(UnitedVoice.com) – Emanuela Orlandi left music practice on June 22, 1983, in Rome, Italy, and nobody ever saw her again. The 15-year-old became the subject of numerous theories because her father worked as a Vatican clerk. Pope John Paul II even got involved in the case and pleaded for the person responsible for her disappearance to return her safely. Sadly, that never happened, but 40 years later, there might finally be a break in the case.
In June, the Vatican announced it was handing evidence related to Orlandi’s disappearance over to the Rome city prosecutor. The press office released a statement on behalf of the Vatican’s promoter of justice, Alessandro Diddi, revealing he’d found new leads that he believes warrant further investigation.
The Vatican followed through with the promise and gave the investigative files to Rome authorities. Prosecutors are now reportedly investigating the possibility that her uncle, Mario Meneguzzi, was involved in her disappearance. He was accused of sexually abusing the missing girl’s older sister.
According to the reports, Natalina, the older sibling, spoke to a priest during confession and told him that her uncle abused her. Meneguzzi also allegedly resembled a drawing of a person that witnesses claim the missing girl was seen talking to after her music lesson. Following her disappearance, he’s also the person who answered phone calls from people who claimed they were the kidnappers. The suspects had allegedly demanded he be the point person for ransom payments.
Orlandi’s family, however, is disputing the report. The missing girl’s brother, Pietro, lashed out at an Italian news network for repeating the theory, saying he was “furious” and accusing authorities of crossing the line with the allegations about his uncle. He also said his uncle had an alibi for the time of his sister’s disappearance and claimed it had been verified. Meneguzzi had told police he was in the village of Torano on the day the teen vanished. Her father, Ercole, was also allegedly with him, but he told investigators multiple times that Meneguzzi was not in Torano the day his daughter went missing.
Natalina also addressed the allegations, saying her uncle had “made advances” toward her, but he stopped when she rejected him and never raped her.
Pietro said, “The Vatican is seeking to deny any form of responsibility.” Over the years, the Vatican has faced accusations that it was covering up information about Orlandi’s disappearance. There has never been any evidence to suggest the pope or other officials had anything to do with it.
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