Emanuela Orlandi was the daughter of a Vatican City employee. She disappeared on June 22, 1983, aged 15, after leaving a music class.
According to rival theories widely circulated in Italian media, the teen was snatched by mobsters to put pressure on the Vatican to recover a loan; or was taken to force the release from prison of Mehmet Ali Agca, the Turk who attempted to assassinate Pope John Paul II in 1981.
In 2017, conspiracy specialists were driven into a frenzy by a leaked – but apparently falsified – document, purportedly written by a cardinal and pointing to a Vatican cover-up.
Five years earlier, experts exhuming the tomb of a notorious crime boss at a Vatican-owned church uncovered some 400 boxes of bones.
Enrico De Pedis, head of the Magliana gang, was suspected of involvement in her kidnapping and some speculated the youngster might be buried alongside him – but DNA tests failed to find a match.