Priest on trial for sexual assault against minors files lawsuit against victim and journalist

Giuseppe Rugolo, the priest accused of aggravated sexual violence against minors, is facing trial in the court of Enna. However, Rugolo has filed a lawsuit against Antonio Messina, the young man who had previously reported the prelate three years ago and claimed to have been abused by him. A journalist from Enna, Manuela Acqua, has also been accused along with Messina. Similarly to the case involving Pierelisa Rizzo, who was sued twice by the priest for defamation and dissemination of procedural acts, the Enna prosecutor’s office has requested the dismissal of the case, but Rugolo’s lawyer has opposed it. Rizzo will appear before the judge on March 19 and March 21, 2024, while the hearing for Antonio Messina and Manuela Acqua is set for May 28, 2024. Many journalists who have covered the Rugolo case have been sued, including Francesco Zanardi, president of Rete l’Abuso, the only Italian association of victims of abuse by church officials. So far, all the lawsuits filed by Rugolo have been deemed unfounded, both by the Enna prosecutor’s office and the one in Savona, where Rete l’Abuso is based. “Since the beginning of the investigation, a poisoned atmosphere has been created around me and those who support me,” says Antonio Messina.

Enna, il sacerdote a processo per violenza sessuale su minori querela la vittima e una giornalista

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