Religious Sister Cruelly Murdered in Satanic Ritual
Date of incident: June 6, 2000
Category: Social Hostility / Intolerance
Attack against: Faith
Area of case: Private
In the night of June 6th, 2000 in the Italian town of Chiavenna in the Lombardy, Sister Maria Laura Mainetti was murdered by three teenage girls in a ritual act of satanism.
Sister Maria Laura Mainetti, 61, was stoned, beaten and stabbed 19 times by three teenaged girls, two ages 17 and one age 16, after being lured into a dark back alley. Three days before the killing one of the girls called her under the pretext that she had been raped and was pregnant. She said she was considering an abortion.
The girl phoned again on June 6th to say she had fled home and begged the nun to meet her. Sr Mainetti was known in the town for her charitable work with young, dispossessed and poor people, so to answer this nighttime call for help was not unusual.
Sr Mainetti is believed to have left the convent at 9.30 pm and upon arriving at the destination was ambushed by the three girls and murdered according to a satanic ritual. An early morning stroller discovered the body the next day. In Sr. Mainetti's hands were clumps of an attacker's hair.
The police apprehended the girls twenty-two days after the murder. At first, they said they had only done it as a game, but later admitted that it was a sacrifice to Satan. After searches in the young peoples' homes the police were able to discover the existence of a satanic subculture.
On August 9th, 2001 the verdict of Italian Minors Court stated that the crime was committed with malice and a forethought, but acquitted the girl named Ambra, on the grounds of diminished responsibility due to the assumption of mental illness. The sentence of the Milan Court of Appeals in April 2002 reversed the not-guilty verdict of first instance. The new decision considered Ambra to be the leader of the three murderers and condemned her to imprisonment for twelve and a half years (the severest penalty for minors). The Court confirmed the first instance judgment for her two accomplices, Veronica and Milena, who had been convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to eight years and six months.
The killers themselves admitted that when she was dying, Sister Laura was praying for them, saying: "Lord, forgive them." The cause of beatification for Sister Maria Laura Mainetti was opened in November 2005.