7 November 2019. SAVONA: They have no intention of compensating, no agreement between the diocese and the five victims of Don Giraudo by Francesco Zanardi
(Link to the Italian version)

Even a stopped clock marks the exact time twice a day, unless it is that of the cathedral of Savona which, despite the proclamations of Pope Francis, seems incapable of restoring dignity to this diocese and to the victims of its pedophile priests and the bishops who favored them.

Last June, after an attempt at conciliation made by five victims of paedophilia and concluded with an indecent proposal of the Bishop of Savona, Caloggero Marino, he wanted to compensate them, for the violence they had suffered, with the establishment of a toll-free number run by the diocese, and he would not even give the victims the opportunity to have an occupation – the lawyers of the Network L’ABUSO, Elena Peruzzini and Francesca Rosso, sued the diocese of Savona.

The quotation refers to the case of the priest Nello Giraudo and the abuses he committed with the aid of the bishops, from 1980 to about 2000, even if the last abuse committed by Giraudo dates back to 2005. In the latter case the victim would already have been compensated in 2012, after Giraudo agreed to a sentence of one year and six months, for the harassment inflicted on the young scout, at the time of the fifteen-year-old events.

From the investigation of the Savona prosecutor’s office conducted by the public prosecutor Giovanni Battista Ferro, it emerged that the cover of the church for the protection of the priest began in 1980, the same year in which Don Giraudo takes his vows and when a mother of Valleggia denounces, to the then Bishop of Savona Giulio Sanguineti, sexual harassment of his son.

In the blink of an eye Giraudo was moved, just 15 km from Valleggia to Spotorno, to an even more crowded parish of minors, where he would produce other victims.

In the nineties, as well as in the diocese, also in Spotorno, the paedophile tendencies of the Giraudo had become public knowledge, to the point that the same parish and the new bishop, Dante Lafranconi, saw the precedents of the priest, well cataloged in the diocesan archives, thought it should transfer him to another parish. He was appointed parish priest of a small village on the heights of Finale Ligure (SV), Orco Feglino, far from prying eyes, where with the blessing of the same bishop who had transferred him, he opened a community for minors in difficulty in which for about a decade he continued undisturbed his pastoral mission in alternation with his perversions.

The criminal attitude of the then Bishop of Savona, Dante Lafranconi, did not go unnoticed by the investigators, who in 2012 asked for his indictment. Lafranconi was saved thanks to the prescription, which, by his own right and especially wanting to clarify his position, he could renounce. But he did not.

The Judge of the Court of Savona Fiorenza Giorgi, on the basis of the documentation that emerged from the investigations of the Prosecutor’s Office, although forced to file because the crime was extinct, did so with very harsh words against the then bishop; “the orderly filing does not detract from the heaviness of the situation revealed by the investigations from which it emerged that the extreme seriousness of the criminal conduct of the Judge had not been considered at all; the documents, perfectly in line with Lafranconi’s omissive attitude, show – it is sad to say – that the only concern of the heads of the Curia was that of safeguarding the image of the diocese rather than the physical and mental health of the minors who were entrusted to the priests of the same and as mainly (not to say only) for this reason the then Bishop of Savona had not exercised his power-duty to control the priests and protect the faithful. Equally sad is to observe how, in the face of concern for the “fragility” and “loneliness” of the Giraudo and the relief for the fact that “nothing has been leaked in the newspapers”, no expression of regret results from the documents in the files in favor of the innocent children entrusted to the care of the priest and remained victims of his “attentions”.

After the summons filed by the lawyers of the Network L’ABUSO, after the technical times during which, especially on the basis of the proclamations of the pontiff, one expected a concrete and honest position of the dioceses precisely to consolidate the proclamations, comes the confirmation that at least in Savona, the line remains that denialist and irresponsible, already consolidated by the predecessors of Bishop Caloggero Marino.

For the defender of the priest Nello Giraudo (the lawyer Marco Russo) would be questioned the abuses perpetrated by his client and would argue that the statements of the VIP Fiorenza Giorgi in the decree of filing for aiding paedophilia of former Bishop Lafranconi, in the specific case are not supported by any evidence.

Even more incredible is the position of the diocese, which not only has no intention of compensating the five victims, but Bishop Caloggero Marino, almost not realizing, or perhaps pretending, complains that he was not the bishop at the time, ignoring that he was appointed in that quote not as responsible for the incident, but simply as Ordinary in office, the diocese of Savona.

What further irritates is the farce, the hunchback blow that the diocese has put in place to manipulate the faithful, in an attempt to turn this long and so shameful page of Savona’s church. We learn in fact (see leaflet) that on the 19th next, naturally in Savona, the diocese organized a meeting in which, in an attempt to reassure those who still send their children unconsciously to the parish, it will be illustrated how the CEI has put in place guidelines for the protection of minors and vulnerable people.

Guidelines by which the church understands that it PREVENTS protection for minors. In reality, it is not addressed to them, but simply to protect oneself from possible “accidents”, in the face of which, however – as in the case of Savona and beyond – it does not PROVIDE to assume any responsibility or support for any victims, denying them as in this case.

The criminal and omissive line of the Catholic Church already emerges from the heavy report of the United Nations of January 31, 2014, a report to which the Vatican should have responded by September 1, 2017, but has not yet done so today.

The same Motu proprio “VOS ESTIS LUX MUNDI”, recently issued by the Pontiff, as you can see from reading it, no longer provides any indication or power for the bishops to report crimes to the judicial authorities, thus officially making the line of the church, totally omissive of civil laws.


Article written by “La Stampa” (Link to the original in Italian)

The Curia against five alleged victims of paedophilia between the 1980s and 1990s. Requested in total almost five million. On 15 November first hearing

Niccolò Zancan for “la Stampa”

No deal. They have no intention of compensating them. They simply don’t believe them.

The Catholic Church rejects the sender’s claim for compensation made by five alleged victims of paedophilia. Five children who in the eighties and nineties had met Don Nello Giraudo between the parish of Spotorno and the Ligurian hinterland. All of them reported being abused, raped and abused. But except in the case of a further victim of the same priest who ended with a plea agreement, the crimes are prescribed.

Because everyone reported after more than thirty years, when Francesco Zanardi was the first to find the strength to come out: “It was very difficult to reconstruct what had happened within me”. They made a total request of 4 million and 700 thousand euros. The calculation obtained with an expert’s report of all the physical and psychological consequences endured. There was the possibility of finding an extra-judicial agreement. But the curia closed the door.

Yesterday the Diocese of Savona-Noli presented the deed of constitution in court.

So did the priest, who had been expelled in the Giraudo. On November 15 there will be the first hearing before the Court of Savona for the Zanardi case. Through its lawyers, the curia contests: “We were not directly aware of the facts laconically described, which Zanardi claimed had occurred to his detriment”. He was called out, however, from the work of his priest: “No causal contribution, even from the psychological point of view, can be attributed to the diocese with regard to the facts allegedly put in place by Nello Giraudo”.

Moreover, there is no longer the same bishop as then: “Such facts, if they had occurred, would have happened not in the light of day, but in an absolutely confidential and hidden way. Likewise, the current representatives of the diocese were not at the time. The curia contests the partisan expertise and in any case adds: “The right to compensation for damages must be considered widely prescribed”. And again: “It is Zanardi’s turn to provide proof”. In short, nothing would have happened. And even if it had happened, the bishop could not know and therefore be responsible for it. In any case: it’s too late.

Even the former priest Nello Giraudo denies it. “The defendant was never able to make a penetration or in any case a carnal conjunction. It is disputed that anything illegal happened on the occasion of the frequent camps organized by the parish group”.

Yet, there is that report signed by Don Nello Giraudo on December 21, 2011 in front of the pm Giovanni Battista Ferro: “In the past I have actually addressed serious problems of the sexual sphere with competent psychologists. I actually spoke about my problems also with my bishops”.

Yet the VIP of Savona, Fiorenza Giorgi, signing the filing of a case for prescription, wrote: “It’s sad to say, the only concern of the heads of the curia of Savona was to safeguard the ‘image of the diocese rather than the physical and mental health of children who were entrusted to the priests of the same. Yet, there is that report by Monsignor Andrea Giusto, which was kept in a safe: “While Don Nello was deputy parish priest in Valleggia the first serious problem occurred. He was accused by a mother of morbid attitudes toward his child, held on the

knees and palpated in a way that is difficult to specify. Currently, summer 2003, nothing has been leaked in the newspapers. Don Nello has undertaken to meet a religious psychologist who will help him to read in himself in an attempt to find a better balance”.

Pope Ratzinger was also informed. It will be a judge of the Court of Savona who will decide on compensation. New expert reports on the victims will be requested. After forty years there is still no conciliation.