Collapse in Rome church, no one hurt

Roof of San Giuseppe dei Falegnami caves in

(ANSA) - Rome, August 30 - Three quarters of the roof collapsed in a central Roman church Thursday but no one was hurt because it was closed - but the famed underlying ancient Roman Mamertine Prison was damaged.
    The vault of San Giuseppe dei Falegnami, at the Roman forum, reportedly caved in.
    Built on top of the Mamertine Prison, the church is usually closed and only opened for weddings.
    It was built between the end of the 16th century and the start of the 17th.
    A fire-service crane has got rid of some remaining hanging parts of the caved-in roof. The wooden beams, which are still standing, are visible through the wreckage.
    The inside of the church is full of broken beams and rubble.
    Sniffer dogs are going through the wreckage as a precaution, sources said.
    The church's priest, who was in the building but not the church, is OK.
    The collapse has damaged the once-infamous Mamertine Prison too.
    "Some fragments of the roof," fire service engineer Luigi Liolli said, "hit a part of the altar.
    "A beam then damaged the Mamertine Prison too", where the pavement gave way.
    The prison was used to house Rome's defeated enemies.
    Among those held there were Vercingetorix, leader of the Gauls during the Gallic War, who was executed at Caesar's Triumph in 46 BC; Jugurtha, King of Numidia, who died of starvation there in 104 BC; St Paul; and St. Peter, who was imprisoned there before being crucified, after performing baptisms in a spring at the bottom of the pit.
   

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