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Original sin: New book details alleged sexual abuse in the Vatican

Italian journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi’s new book, Original Sin, reveals a young whistleblower’s attempts to report sexual abuse his former roomate, then a minor, was subjected to while they were boarders in the Vatican.

books Updated: Nov 10, 2017 11:32 IST
Agence France-Presse
Gianluigi Nuzzi,Vatileaks,Original Sin
Italian journalist and writer Gianluigi Nuzzi at a press conference at the Foreign Press Club in Rome, after the opening of his trial for the publication of classified documents in 2015. (AFP Files)

An Italian journalist acquitted in last year’s so-called Vatileaks trial has published a book detailing the attempts of a young whistleblower to report alleged sexual abuse.

Gianluigi Nuzzi reveals new confidential documents in his latest book Original Sin, which documents the inner workings of the Vatican and touches on some of the sandals or conspiracies that dog it.

Nuzzi last year stood trial in front of Vatican judges accused of publishing stolen papers but was acquitted after they considered he had not committed a crime on Vatican territory.

His fourth book claims an adult seminarian sexually abused a high school student aged 17 to 18 in 2011-2012.

Kamil Tadeusz Jazembowski, from Poland, said he witnessed the abuse of his roomate while living in the Vatican’s residence for children and young people hoping to become priests. He claims a seminarian who had been allowed to live in the housing facility repeatedly visited his roommate at night and that the youngster “felt obliged to go along with it”.

A copy of Nuzzi's latest book Peccato Originale (Original Sin). (AP/Andrew Medichini)

He says he was forced to leave the residence after he tried to raise his concerns with Vatican authorities.

The aggressor exercised “a form of power and intimidation” over the underage students and imposed “bullying or sexual acts” on them, he tells the book, speaking with the victim’s permission. The accused seminarian recently became a priest.

“I don’t blame the priests for being gay. All this is a vast hypocrisy: during the day these people are homophobic, at night they are unleashed in gay clubs,” said Jazembowski, who is also gay. The Vatican did not say if an investigation has been opened when approached by AFP.

The book also investigates the mysterious disappearance in 1983 of Emmanuela Orlandi, the young daughter of an employee of the Vatican State.

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First Published: Nov 10, 2017 11:31 IST