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Father Francesco Spagnesi (40), who made world news in September for having embezzled money from the church to bankroll sex orgies and illicit drugs, was sentenced to 3 years and 8 months in prison last December 7th. The information is from O GLOBO.
In addition to his confinement, Spagnesi will also provide social services and undergo drug addiction treatment. Among the drugs trafficked with tithing money was GHB, known as “liquid ecstasy” by rapists.
The Public Ministry also accused the priest of having embezzled around 200 thousand euros to buy narcotics. Due to the scandal, Spagnesi was even prevented from accessing the parish’s account in April.
During the process, the parish priest admitted part of the crimes and, for that reason, made an agreement with the court. However, Spagnesi denied that he had had unprotected sex in orgies knowing he was HIV positive.
According to the newspaper “Corriere Della Sera”, this accusation had no weight in the conviction because the priest’s boyfriend had a negative result in the HIV test. Defendant’s lawyers also claimed that Spagnesi always warned his partners and that he was not contagious because he was taking antiviral drugs.
When all the controversy occurred, Spagnesi gave an interview to the aforementioned Corriere Della Sera, saying that he “did not recognize himself anymore”.
“I no longer recognize myself, the whirlwind of cocaine has swallowed me,” the priest said in tears in front of his lawyers. “The drug made me betray the people in the parish, it made me tell lies, it made me act in a way that makes me ashamed. Now I’m HIV positive and I ask everyone’s forgiveness”, he said, according to Corriere Della Sera.
“I will return the money I stole to the curia and charity of my parishioners to buy drugs. They will be refunded. I’m going to sell everything that belongs to me, even the house on the mountain”, said the priest at the time.