Bones found in gangster tomb as Vatican mystery deepens

Several boxes of bones have reportedly been found inside the Rome tomb of infamous Italian mobster Enrico De Pedis, whose body was exhumed on Monday as part of an investigation into the disappearance of a Vatican employee’s daughter almost 30 years ago.

Emanuela Orlandi was 15 when she vanished in 1983 after leaving her father’s Vatican City apartment to go to a piano lesson. Her father was a lay employee of the Holy See, according to the Associated Press.

On Monday police exhumed the body of Magliana mob member De Pedis, whose ex-girlfriend has claimed he kidnapped the teenager and whose involvement was also suggested by an anonymous caller to a TV show in 2005, who said the clue to Orlandi’s disappearance lay in De Pedis’ tomb.

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According to Italian news agency ANSA, several boxes of bones were discovered alongside De Pedis’s remains. De Pedis, who controlled Rome’s drug market and was killed in 1990, is buried in one of the capital’s most important churches, Saint Apollinare, which houses the remains of a number of cardinals and senior Vatican figures, according to the BBC.

At the time it was said that the burial was approved because De Pedis had “repented while in jail and also done a lot of work for charity,” including large donations to the Catholic Church, The Daily Telegraph reports.

Lawyers for the De Pedis family and his widow accompanied stonemasons to open the tomb on Monday, while police ringed the church to keep back onlookers.

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