The Vatican has said it regrets the speculation in the Italian media that the deceased Archbishop Paul Marcinkus was involved in the disappearance of a Vatican employee’s daughter in 1983.
On Tuesday afternoon, Fr. Federico Lombardi, the Holy See Press Office Director, spoke about how the case of 15 year-old Emanuela Orlandi’s has been handled by the media.
According to Lombardi, the recent disclosure of confidential testimony to the media “has come about in a striking way, with the widespread journalistic disclosure of confidential information, information that remains completely unverified and that proceeds from a witness of extremely dubious credibility.”
Recent reports on several Italian news agencies cited testimony from Sabrina Minardi, who was the girlfriend of Enrico De Pedis, a leader of the infamous Rome-based Magliana gang in the 1980s. In the confidential testimony, Minardi claimed that a renowned gangster kidnapped Emanuela acting on orders from Archbishop Marcinkus, who was head of the Vatican Bank (the Institute for Religious Works) at the time.
"This serves only to renew the immense pain of the Orlandi family, while showing no respect and humanity towards people who have already suffered so much,” Lombardi lamented.
Fr. Lombardi also criticized the accusations leveled against the late archbishop. “It also serves to spread defamatory and groundless accusations against Archbishop Marcinkus, who died some time ago and cannot defend himself.”
While saying that he did not want to sway the judges and investigators in their “rigorous verification of facts” surrounding the Orlandi case, Fr. Lombardi said, “we cannot but express our extreme regret and reproof at methods of information that owe more to sensationalism than to the requirements of seriousness and of professional ethics."