Two days after bones found on Vatican property last week were sent for DNA testing, more remains were uncovered in the same area that are likely to belong to the same individual. Source: Crux.
According to Italian agency ANSA, the new remains, found on Tuesday, consist of part of a skull and jawbone. Authorities believe the fragments belong to the same partial-skeleton uncovered last week by workers carrying out restoration on a building attached to the Vatican’s embassy to Italy.
In addition to the skeleton, a separate set of bone fragments were found last week which, according to experts, appear to be older than the skeleton and are believed to belong to a second individual.
After an initial examination of the skeleton’s pelvis, it was believed that the remains belonged to a woman, however, confirmation of the age and gender of the person, as well as a rough estimate of when they died, will not come until the DNA testing is complete.
Before the new bones were found, Gianni Arcudi, director of Pathology at Rome’s Tor Vergata University and a consultant in the case, said that at first sight, the skeleton did not appear to be overly decomposed, despite having been buried in humid ground.
Mr Arcudi told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera that in his view, the skeleton likely belongs to someone between 25-35 years of age - an analysis which, if true, would debunk theories that the remains belong to one of two missing teenagers who disappeared in 1983.
For many Italians, the discovery of the bones has reawakened curiosity and speculation over the cold cases of Emanuela Orlandi, whose father worked at the time for the Vatican bank and lived on Vatican property, and Mirella Gregori, who went missing about a month before Ms Orlandi.
Orlandi family lawyer Laura Sgro told Corriere della Sera that the finding of the new bones does not change anything for the family. “We don’t know if Emanuela is dead and, if she is dead, we don’t know when,” adding that “we are waiting for the DNA test.”