Father Bogdan Petre, the only Orthodox priest who visits Romanian convicts in Rome's jails, participated in the ecumenical ceremony dedicated to Giovanna Reggiani on Thursday. In an exclusive interview for Hotnews.ro, he speaks about the fast growing number of Romanians arriving in Italy lately, but also about the number of Romanian convicts that grows at the same pace in Rome.
In the interview, Petre says that Romanians are currently extremely worried. In his parish, where he serves, there were anti-Romanian manifestations, but people who know the Romanians reacted and organized their own support rallies.
Petre hasn't seen yet the Romanian accused of killing Giovanna Reggiani, but is still trying to fix a visit.
According to Bogdan Petre, the situation is quite rough for the Romanian detainees in the Rebibbia jail, where some of them are denied from their everyday walk in the green or are even deprived by their minimal rights. The moral is at its lowest since, for many of them, the trials are just about to start and the future sentences will be significantly harder.
The priest says that from 2005 until this summer, the number of Romanian detainees was rather constant, but started to grow this year. There are now 20% more Romanians in jails than there were this summer, almost all of them for minor offences and mostly theft.
Criminals, Petre says, are mostly people who demanded their rights from employers, were denied, and "took justice into their own hands".