Piero Alfio Capuna, the head of a lay Catholic group in southern Italy, had been accused of sexually abusing 10 women. After he was accused of the crime, Capuna, who is referred to as the archangel by his followers, released a statement. In that letter, he stated that the lay organization and the ecclesial authorities have no links between them.
That claim proved to be false. In the court, many of the witnesses pointedly said that every Sunday after the mass, a meeting was held at the nearby headquarters, which is known as the Cenacle. The priests used to attend the meeting. Following these statements, another paper train has been discovered which prove that the ties between the lay and the diocese went as far back as the ‘70s.
Victims accused that as the head of the lay, Capuna used to target the people with some family difficulty, or some economic difficulty, for the evangelization. Another witness confirmed the fact that the goal was to bring as many people to the lay, as possible. He would then use his prophet-like stature to compel the young women into pleasuring him sexually. He would say to the victims that the sexual acts were purifying them from the path of Satan.
The victims themselves said that they have experienced emotional or family trauma before. They claimed that the trauma made them an easy target for the sexual advances of Capuna. One of the witnesses said that no priest was spiritually accompanying the members of the lay, but they often participated in the meetings and events. One of the witnesses even said that an exorcist was sent to her house by the organization to liberate her mother from the grasp of evil.
All these statements are raising questions about how the organization was able to act without any supervision to this day.