Update: Looking for information about Cristiano de Angelis and the charges against him? please read this (probably far-from-exhaustive) long list of testimonies.
Update (Feb. 2016): Rather than taking a strong look in a mirror and reflect on his life choices, Mr. De Angelis has been spending a large amount of time and resources trying to make these pages disappear from the web (and somewhat succeeding). Good thing URLs can be changed.
Cristiano De Angelis is an Italian-Brazilian “professor” of economics who enjoys travelling.
Cristiano De Angelis is also a sociopathic sexual predator, who raped a 20-year-old woman in Kyoto, sexually assaulted at least one other person and generally behaved like a pathetic excuse for a human being toward all the people unlucky enough to cross his path during his travels through South-East Asia.
Abusing the trust and generosity of people in the Couchsurfing hospitality exchange community and craftily creating new profiles each time, Cristiano De Angelis was able to slip unnoticed from one unsuspecting host to the next. There is no telling (yet) of his actions throughout SE Asia, until his arrival in Kyoto:
M is a 20-year-old Japanese friend of mine, loved and trusted by all her friends: not just the local Kyoto community, but also the many dozens foreign travellers she hosted in her home, out of a sincere desire to exchange with other cultures and make the world a better place for people. It may sound a bit naive, even dangerous, but the Couchsurfing system of trust has worked well for millions of people so far. And while she may not have been as cautious as a young single woman ought to be in her situation, her heart was in the right place and nothing could justify what happened to her.
When she first met Cristiano De Angelis and immediately felt uneasy about his lack of manners and rude behaviour, she should have kicked him out and left it there. But being a gentle, trusting, young person, she felt a responsibility toward him for initially accepting to host him (a sense of obligation he thoroughly used and abused). Instead of using her prerogative to change her mind, she looked past his unpleasantness and tried to be an agreeable host.
In Mr. De Angelis’ sick mind, this probably meant it was not only OK, but even risk-free to slip in her bed the following night and force himself onto her despite her best efforts to push him away: after all, what impressionable 20-year-old would have the courage to make a fuss about being raped by the very man she willfully let stay in her house?
He was right.
Not only did M. feel too helpless to do anything after Cristiano De Angelis raped her, merely relieved to go to sleep (at which point he apparently further undressed her to take pictures), but she kept shut about it for a while, until she progressively confided in a few people and finally told a group of us the whole story in private.
Unfortunately, nothing any of us said could convince M. to file an official police complaint. Like many women in her case, M. felt a part of responsibility and shame for what had happened and thought the best course of action was to move on with her life and “not make a fuss”. You cannot believe how mad this makes me, but it is ultimately her decision to make ((Please keep this story in mind the next time you hear some idiot suggest that a rape victim somehow “deserved” it or bears even a part of the blame (for the way she dressed, letting the rapist buy her a drink etc.): decades of blame-the-victim and casual attitude toward rape cases by the Japanese police (greatly improved nowadays, but still strong in people’s minds) are the reason that people like M. will rather keep it to themselves than endure the trouble and perceived humiliation of filing a complaint.)).
Meanwhile, Cristiano De Angelis did not dwell on things: he promptly moved to Tokyo, where he went on to abuse a new unsuspecting host with behaviours running the spectrum from utter rudeness to sexual harassment, including: bringing back a random girl to have sex at his host’s place (serving her the bottle of champagne his host kept in his fridge) and masturbating on his host’s bed after his sexual advances had been sternly rebuffed ((All of this pales by comparison to what he did in Kyoto, but that’s what they call character evidence.)).
He has since then been sighted in Malaysia, where his antics were fortunately limited to rudeness, casual racism and generally behaving like an arrogant moron. By now, most of the Couchsurfing community in Asia has been warned to look out for him and he should not get another opportunity to abuse the trust and generosity of other unsuspecting hosts. There is unfortunately no guarantee that he will not hurt other people in the future, or that he will ever be made accountable for his crime.
Cristiano De Angelis is not only a rapist, but an unrepentant, repeat offender, with clearly no sense of guilt or remorse. By most people’s account, he is not particularly articulate (euphemism), veering on delusional, which might explain why he never bothered to cover his tracks while committing all this. Or perhaps he just figured that he would be long gone by the time anyone realised what sort of a scumbag he was.
I have no illusion that, back at home (Nice, France, or Padova, Italy, it would seem), Mr. De Angelis is an upstanding citizen, perhaps even liked by his friends and colleagues (he is even a family man, it seems). He is not entirely mistaken in his delusions of impunity: after all, he did get away and will likely not rot in a Japanese cell (or in any other SE Asian country) for a few years like he so richly deserves.
Which is why I am posting this: I do not think I have ever named someone in this manner on this blog, let alone launched such serious accusations, but this is how boiling mad this whole story makes me. If one single person, be it a friend, potential host, prospective employer, ever gets to learn the hideous personality of Cristiano De Angelis through this post (and a little help from Google), it won’t have been a waste of time.
Please spread the word.
If you personally know him and have any doubt about the truth of the above, please do not hesitate to contact me: I will be more than happy to refer you to an arm-length list of direct witnesses who will be glad to corroborate and provide further details. If you have encountered this scum in the past and have any information you feel might be of use to the public, feel free to share below. [Update 01/16/2012:] Better yet, check what all his CS hosts in Asia have to say about him
Update (01/13/2012): After I posted this, my friend M. finally accepted to go together to the police station to file an official complaint:
I just came back from Kyoto Shichijo-Karasuma Police Station, where I took M. to file a formal complaint. Although I of course did not attend the interview itself, what she told me of it was that, according to the police officer, it was “too late to collect physical evidence” and there was therefore nothing to be done (despite mountains of circumstantial evidence and her own word, which should warrant at least some questioning). Judging by the relative brevity of the interview (30-40 minutes), I suspect the officer was not overly motivated in opening a case against a guy long gone from the country, and since M. was rather reluctant to share in the first place, it could not have gone very far.
I was not exactly expecting the Japanese police to send a death squad after that guy through South-East Asia, but one could have hoped that a 20-year-old girl collecting the courage to walk into a police station to report her own rape would get more than a 30-minute interview ending with, I kid you not, advices on how to handle it “the next time it happens” (the next time?!? WTF).
Sad and depressing, but not that surprising.
I guess we can find some solace in the knowledge that Mr. De Angelis might eventually get caught when he does it again ((Because he will do it again: sexual predators of his kind, exhibiting such sociopathic tendencies and complete absence of remorse, do not just stop of their own, especially when they feel they will always get away with it.)). Until then, if you ever meet Cristiano De Angelis, rapist and scumbag of the earth, do not hesitate to relay my most utter contempt to him.
[Update 01/16/2012:] Still have your doubts and think (rightfully so) that it is too easy for a single person to launch such accusations without proof?
Go have a look at what people, living in six different countries, have to say, independently, about the man.
thanks for sharing. don’t care if it’s confrontational and i would most definitely want to lynch him. and i don’t believe in sympathy no matter what kind of a hellhole these complete piles of crap grew up in. some people are simply broken.
I think I’ve found his twitter account, and maybe it can help tracking him down.
[twitter account URL removed: I don’t think it’s him and do not want to risk bothering an innocent. There are many C. De Angelis out there. — Dave]
So sorry for everything.
I’m really saddened to hear this story, I have had such great experiences with CS so far!
It’s even worse knowing that this guy has studied in my home town (Florianópolis) in UFSC, and I think even taught there!
The people from São Paulo have put up a post about him and I’m not sure about in Florianopolis yet, but I have warned some CS buddies from there too.
I really wish that if he was innocent as he says, he’d go to Japan and straighten it out, as now, he’ll have to pay the price of a bad reputation online wherever he goes.
All my heart goes out to you M. Hope you can get over this awful incident!
I wanted to support all this effort you have done for your friend. I completely understand the position of your friend, since a few years ago I was also a victim of rape (not within the CS community, but while travelling). To all the people that has complained about being bothered by reminders or messages in CS, I just simply have to tell them that this is the only way to make this horrible person to pay and punish him for what he has done.
I hope none of you will feel the impotence mixed with guilt, rage, frustration, and on top of that the fear that you might have cought something like HIV, and have to wait three or more months to take the test. This is a little bit how I felt, so do not write here saying “oh please there should be a more appropriate way to do this, or it’s not fair you are spaming” because there is nothing fair or appropiate in what this despicable person did to Dave’s friend. If he’s innocent then he should proove it, but his behavior and other testimony puts him in evidence.
Keep informing and creating more connections to follow this son of a gun.
For what it matters, I want to say that I have known Cristiano for more than 12 years, and calling him a rapist just does not make sense to me or to everyone else who knows him personally. I think this train ticked issue might have escalated without proportion to this point of accusing him of such a demeaning thing. Before making these outrageous accusations, think about all the cultural nuances that might have taken place here; When you think about Brazil, what comes to mind first? Carnaval, sensuality and nice beaches, right! So being forward and open about sex is inherent to a young and single person from down here. Now, that does not excuse any wrongdoing, but again, knowing Cristiano for such a long time, I can only think of a culture shock aggravated by a missing train ticked.
@marina: thanks for your testimony (though, just like with anybody who has commented on knowing him personally or having met him, I would encourage you to post with some manner of identifying information: anonymous claims, one direction or the other, are just too easy to make and do not carry much value in such a story).
Your experience is duly noted, but as I’ve said before, it does not weigh much against the many negative testimonies that have come out from his hosts through Asia: even complete assholes can be nice to their friends and family, even monsters have a mother who loves them. What counts is how they behave when they think nobody is watching. History is littered with “perfect gentlemen” that behaved like savages, as soon as they were a few 1000s kilometres from home.
As for your assertion of “cultural misunderstanding”… I don’t know where to start.
In what culture is sexual assault and rape a matter of misunderstanding?!?
Please go read the testimonies of all the people who had the bad luck to host Cristiano and tell me if these are behaviours that “young and single persons down here” engage in.
I have many Brazilian friends, and not a single one of them would ever think of behaving in such a way. We are all very “open about sex” and have absolutely no problem with it, but there is a world of difference between flirting and harassing (not to mention assaulting), made even worse when the recipient of that unwanted attention has opened her home to you and has no way of escaping your aggressive sexual behaviour.
I strongly refuse to hear any argument to his defense based on “cultural differences”. Being a decent human being is not a matter of culture. Trying to blame his behaviour on Brazilian (or any other) culture is thoroughly unfair to the millions Brazilians who interact with other cultures all the time without any such problems.
I agree with Dave. No such injustice or gross misconduct is aggravated from a stolen train ticket or ‘culture shock’. If I lose something in my own home (like a train ticket), my first thought would not be blaming my housemates no matter what. Something like a train ticket could have slipped off, or just misplaced. Sorry if I’m being judgmental here, but he has to be INSANE or just plain STUPID to blame such a small story like that on an unsuspecting host. My first impression of him, unfortunately, is also crazy/psycho/pervert (the way he looked at me and my housemates when he talked) and just plain stupid.
If you personally know Cristiano, Marina, could you prove that he would be a ‘real professor’ with whatever intelligence/character/personality that he currently possess? I’ve friends who are doing their PhD and they simply do not keep showing me their Power Point Presentations which absolutely had nothing to do with his book. A Professor would not make sweeping generalizations like Thailand is dirty and the Thais have no energy because they stay all day in the temple to pray? I mean, who says things like that? A traveller wouldn’t, and he’s supposed to be a Professor? He was supposed to meet a Malaysian Professor the next day, (he claimed so after we picked him up in the morning) but at night, we asked him again if he was supposed to call the Professor for an appointment, he looked at us blankly, “What Professor?”
He made me take him around the city of Kuala Lumpur without him having ANY knowledge of the city at all. Fair enough, if he’s just an ignorant tourist, but a travelling Professor who goes around the world (50 countries in 2 years in his words) to meet up with his fellow colleagues, he didn’t even know about the infamous Petronas Twin Towers when he saw it loomed in front of him! He asked me instead, rather puzzledly and said, “Why are we here? Oh, is it because you wanted to show me Citibank? Yes, I also use Citibank in Brazil!”
When we talked, he had no interest in knowing the place or surrounding. He only cared about asking me to dump my boyfriend and saying that he’d marry me instead.I was only too polite to just say that won’t be possible and his reply was, “Just you wait and see. I see you have First Lady qualities. And oh, I can’t believe you speak Italian. You have to speak with my dad!!” When asked why, he said, “Because I believe you could be the first lady.” Now Marina, knowing Cristiano, did you know that he’ll be running to be a President this year or was it next? He further added that, “He could kiss me for 30 minutes continuously while for some girls like my housemate, he could only kiss for 1 minute.” All these within the first hour of meeting him.
He knew no geography nor history nor anything other than Knowledge Management which he kept showing me the presentation on his Ipad. His book certainly had NOTHING to do with his thesis. His idea of exchanging energy could be related to sex? I don’t want to know.
If he IS a PROFESSOR (same goes for the story of the yacht that he intends to purchase in order to sail from France to Brazil, and of the gigantic mansion that he built with his own hands in Florianopolis), then he wouldn’t have madly, deludedly, think that just because Asian women are polite and meek and usually smiling despite the uncomfortable situation, doesn’t mean that he could mistake it as ‘mutual attraction, interest and so on’.
I have plenty of single Brazilian/Italian friends but no, they do not behave like Cristiano at all.
what a dangerous character. i put up a hunt for him on my own site as well – http://www.gamemaki.com/main/challenge?id=3058. he brought great shame to the CS name.
i hope everyone could combine to use social media to track down this bastard.
To: Cristiano De Angelis (or whoever your name is, coz I DON’T believe anything about you)
Defense yourself and prove your innocense by going back to Japan immediately. PERIOD
@ Dave: I’m in just in case u start collecting fund to pay “The Professor” ticket to Japan
@ “The Professor” defenders: Please include your website or email or couchsurfing link, etc so that we can see you as “you said who you are”
This is horrifying. I have been spreading the news in the online community in Singapore. Quite a few of my friends in Kuala Lumpur have met him.
Will check back here for any info.
Also, here’s an online ‘challenge’ to track Cristiano down, started by some enterprising concerned Singaporeans. http://www.gamemaki.com/main/challenge?id=3058
Guys , Guys !
Is it just me or there is something just wrong here !
After reading the Warning from a CS Group that I am part of I have entered here to read about the story. Of course like every of you at the beginning I was very shocked about the news of the rapist. After reading carefully your article , the testimony and also Claudio’s responses I analyzed and reached to the idea that it wasn’t actually a rape. As he stated there was a mutual attraction at the beginning, this comes to the point that she didn’t sent him to the police in the first place and didn’t even after you told her to do it, because it wasn’t actually a rape..
I believe that if he didn’t made the mistake to pick on her about that ticket everything would have been ok and they would have continued talking on FB or Skype as friends afterwards. I think all this is degenerating a bit with contacting the bosses and family or so..
I really do not know this guy , but if it resumes just to this I would say that it’s not the rapist.. but then again after reading all the comments that other hosts had to say about him I have to say he has an inclination to put himself into trouble. About the rudeness I don’t support it and I would have kicked him out the first place he would have done it with me.
I hope the truth comes out !
I don’t know where you got that “mutual attraction” from Cristiano’s gibberish defense. In fact, Mr. De Angelis was as bold as to claim there was no sex at all, consensual or otherwise. Which makes his bizarre claim that she gave him a “kiss […] with all the tranquility and consent”, even more outlandish: anybody who knows anything about Japanese culture (Mr. De Angelis obviously doesn’t) would know that Japanese people never even kiss their own friends or family members…
Anyway, no need to argue about the credibility of his ridiculous-sounding defense (which I have very gladly left in the comments to this blog, for everybody to read and judge for themselves), how about reading what 6 other people, all unrelated to each other and unaware at the time of his past history, had to write about him:
To everybody else:
Because the main story has now moved to this much more complete and multi-sourced new article, and too many people are commenting here without reading the full story, I am closing the comments on this entry. Feel free to comment on the other one if you have anything to share.
Comments are closed.