Priests to be tried in Vatican choir boys abuse case

Agence France-Presse

October 8, 2020

An Italian priest accused of sexually abusing choir boys in a seminary and another priest who allegedly facilitated that abuse will go on trial in the Vatican next week.

The alleged abuse took place in 2011 to 2012 at the pre-seminary of St Pius X, an institution located on Vatican grounds that trains choir boys and is very close to Pope Francis’s residence.

Gabriele Martinelli is suspected of carrying out repeated sexual assaults on at least one victim when he was a seminarian aged 21 and lived in the building.

Martinelli was made a priest in 2017.

The boarders at St Pius X are mainly children and adolescents who stay there while they attend a private school in Rome, and participate as choristers in the masses celebrated in St Peter’s Basilica.

Enrico Radice, rector of the residence at the time of the alleged events, is accused of covering the abuse up.

The Vatican said last year the pair would be tried. The first hearing will be held on October 14, it said.

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