Italian high court finds ‘romance’ in 60-year-old man’s sex with 11-year-old, overturns sentence

Pietro Lamberti (immagine da Il Quotidiano della Calabria

ROME, Hillary White – December 18, 2013 ( –

An Italian high court has dismissed the sentence in a case of pedophilia on the grounds that there was “romance” involved between the 60 year-old social services worker and the 11 year-old girl in his care.

Pietro Lamberti, who works for the social services department of Catanzaro in Calabria in the south, was found in bed with the girl, described as “disadvantaged” in the press, by local police who raided his house in June 2011. The Court of Cassation overturned a five-year sentence for a conviction of sexual violence against a minor.

Italy’s age of consent is 14 and rises to 16 when the older party is judged to be in a position of authority over the child.

The court ruled to overturn the sentence upon hearing claims that the girl was “in love” with the man and pursued him. The case must now return to the local court in Cantazaro for retrial. Police said they had gathered evidence from “hundreds” of wiretaps of telephone conversations.

The court heard that Lamberti had tried to dissuade the girl and refrain from consummating the relationship for fear of impregnating her. He reportedly told her, “This is a secret that we have to bring up to grave.”


Italian court annuls prison sentence for elderly paedophile after 11-year-old victim tells investigators in Catanzaro that she loves him

Local Supreme Court judges sexual abuse to be a ‘romantic relationship’

An Italian appeals court has annulled a five-year prison sentence for a 60-year-old paedophile after it judged his sexual abuse of an 11-year-old girl to be a “romantic relationship”.

According to local media reports, the Corte d’Apello in Catanzaro – a coastal city in the southern Italian province of Calabria – ruled that the pair were in a “real relationship” after the victim told prosecutors she was in love with her abuser.

According to the Italian news website TGCom24, the child is from a disadvantaged background and had been placed into the care of the man – who works for the local social services department.

It is alleged that his sexual abuse of the child was discovered when officers raided a seaside cottage and found the pair naked in bed.

The man was initially sentenced to five years in prison for sexual violence against a minor, as the age of consent in Italy is 14, raising to 16 when one of the participants is in a position of authority or care over the other.

Despite the clarity of this law, the Catanzaro court quashed the original sentence on the grounds of extenuating circumstances after the victim repeatedly told investigators that she loved the defendant.

Following the annulment, the case is due to be sent back to the Catanzaro court for a retrial.

I’m sick to my stomach after reading this verdict. There are lots of rich international pedophilia rings – the judges in this case appear to be a part of them.

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