Torino striker Fabio Quagliarella has claimed he was forced to leave former team Napoli after anonymous letters sent to the club accused him of links to the Camorra mafia, cocaine usage and paedophilia.
The footballer was speaking to Sport Mediaset (h/t Calciomercato) after taking to the stand in a trial against a police officer alleged to have been stalking Quagliarella. During his briefing, the 32-year-old opened up about why his former club decided to move him on to Juventus in 2010:
[Napoli president] Aurelio De Laurentiis sold me because he had received anonymous letters and phone messages accusing me of taking cocaine during house parties with Camorra Mafia members
I was forced to leave my hometown and Napoli sold me to Juventus. I had been falsely accused of being a Camorrist and a pedophile who was doing orgies. President De Laurentiis used to call me every day, but after those letters he advised to me to leave my hometown Castellammare di Stabia to go live in a hotel, to be more calm and relaxed.
After that conversation that took place in Napoli's headquarters, he had never called me again.
According to Football Italia, Quagliarella was testifying in the case against policeman Raffaele Piccolo, who is accused of sending threatening letters to the player, his father and clubs the striker had played for between the years of 2007 and 2010.
Tancredi Palmeri of beIN Sports provided some more detail on the trial currently involving Piccolo and Quagliarella:
The striker is well travelled in Italian football, currently enjoying his second stint at Torino. Aside from Napoli and Juventus he has also played for Udinese, Sampdoria, Ascoli and Fiorentina too. Quagliarella has also represented the national team on 25 occasions, scoring seven goals in the process.
The finest stint of Quagliarella’s career came during his time with the Bianconeri, winning three league titles in succession with the club between 2011 and 2014. This season he has scored five goals in 16 Serie A appearances.