Police are investigating whether a paedophile priest was shot dead by hitmen, hired by the father of two victims.
Giuseppe Matarazzo spent 11 years and six months in prison after being convicted of sexually abusing two sisters while he was working as a pastor in Benevento, north of Naples, Italy.
According to local media, neXt, one of the young girls took her own life near her home in 2008, aged just 15 years old.
The 45-year-old was released from prison last year, but was killed in Frasso Telesino – a village in the province of Benevento – just weeks later. His body was found in July with five gunshot wounds, two of which were fatal.
It’s now emerged the father of the two sisters is being investigated by police on suspicion of murder, as authorities have confirmed the crime was committed ‘on commission’, with chief prosecutor Aldo Policastro confirming it was a ‘hired crime’.
Investigations are being coordinated by prosecutor Francesco Sansobrino, and by chief prosecutor Policastro.
A suspicious car was spotted near Sant’Agata de ‘Goti shortly before the murder, and investigators also reportedly found a 3.56 magnum pistol, which is being checked by experts to determine if it’s the murder weapon.
The findings led to the arrests of two men, 30-year-old Generoso Nasta and 55-year-old Giuseppe Massaro, who are currently being investigated by the Carabinieri – the national gendarmerie of Italy who primarily carry out domestic policing duties.
Nasta is suspected to have acted as a driver and provided the murder weapon for the crime, while Massaro is thought to have provided the car and participated in the design of the plan.
Il Sud Online report both men are unemployed and do some occasional work, though investigators noted their standard of living has changed recently, a detail which added to the series of serious clues found since the murder.
A GPS system on the car revealed it was at the scene of the murder in the days before the crime, as well as at the same time it took place.
According to Caserta News, investigators believe it’s very likely there was also a third person who took part in the murder of the priest.
The two men who’ve been arrested will reportedly be heard by the magistrate of the court of Benevento in the coming days for the security questioning.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.