Tag Archives: rafaelle sollecito

Amanda Knox Documentary to be Released on Netflix


Amanda Knox

At the end of the month, Netflix is going to release a documentary on the murder of Meredith Kerchner, and the subsequent prosecutions of Amanda Knox, Rafaelle Sollecito, and Rudy Guede. Knox and Sollecito’s convictions were ultimately overturned last year, and they were acquitted. Guede was separately convicted for the murder, and his convictions remains in effect.

Crimcourts has covered the Knox case extensively, it was an international media sensation that “Foxy Knoxy”, an American student in Perugia, was accused of a horrific murder of her roommate. This was coupled with allegations of a sexual nature, most of which were not based in any fact. The prosecutor who propounded these theories, also will appear in the documentary. It will be worth checking out.

For more on the Knox case, check out our Knox Archive.

Italy’s Highest Court Explains Amanda Knox’s Acquittal

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox

Italy’s highest court, the Court of Cassation, issued their formal written explanation of the decision acquitting Amanda Knox. The court strongly criticized the shortcomings of the investigation, attacking the case for “glaring errors,” and said the lower court trial had “oscillations which were the result of stunning flaws, or amnesia.” As we have stated before on Crimcourts, elements of the prosecution’s case was based on pure fantasy (there was nothing to support an orgy), the government relied on evidence so unreliable that it would not have been admitted in American courts, and the appellate court that reinstated the conviction did so on a completely new theory that had not been even argued by the prosecution. The court’s ruling was an indictment on the system that was driven by media, and of the media, as well.

This ruling is the final closure on the Knox case, and the final determination that she was innocent of these horrible crimes.

See our full coverage of the Knox case.

Amanda Knox Decision May be Issued Soon

It is expected the Italian courts will rule on Amanda Knox’s case today. They could uphold the decision, or demand a new trial. The Wall Street Journal gives a pretty succinct evaluation of possible extradition scenarios. For more on the history of the case, please refer to our extensive coverage.

Amanda Knox Decision may be Issued Tomorrow

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox

Italy’s high court may issue an order on the Amanda Knox case as early as tomorrow. The Italian Court of Cassation is expected to rule Wednesday and may order a new appellate trial for Knox and/or her then boyfriend Rafaelle Sollecito, or it may chose to uphold the previous decision reinstating the guilty verdicts. The public opinion in Italy seems to be very much in favor of conviction, though the evidence is specious at best. Review our coverage on Crimcourts, as we have highlighted flaws in the evidence, much of which would not have even been admissible under American standards of evidence. The appellate decision reinstating the verdict is laughable under the standards of jurisprudence here.

Regardless of the decision tomorrow, the legal saga is far from over. If the verdicts are upheld, there will be an extensive debate and possible drawn out fight over extradition. If a new trial is ordered, the courts will revisit the evidence yet again.

The New Amanda Knox Verdict is Ridiculous. WTF Italy?

The reinstatement of the guilty verdict in the trial for the murder of Meredith Kercher in Perugia came down several weeks ago. American Amanda Knox and her then-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were convicted, then acquitted, then retried and have now been re-convicted for the 2007 slaying of Kercher, who had been Knox’s roommate. Here’s what’s bizarre about the conviction: the court declined to believe the prosecutor’s argument that the murder occurred during a sex-game gone wrong. Instead, they came up with an entirely novel theory of the case, that Knox had killed Kercher over a dispute about the rent.

WTF, Italy?

The court, in its decision, rejected the the prosecutor’s theory of the case. But, they still found her guilty. To do so, they still relied upon the worst of the government’s evidence, the discredited DNA evidence, and MADE UP a new theory about what happened out of thin air. The capper is that the court found that Knox delivered the fatal blow with one knife, which does not match the imprints at the scene. He then finds that Sollecito also cut the victim with a different knife, which has never been found or put into evidence. The judge is literally making stuff up. He invented a two-knife theory to try to make his ruling fit the facts.

I have long attacked the sex-game theory wildly imaginative and wholly lacking in credibility. But that’s what they were trying to prove at trial. How can a reasonable court reject that and find her guilty on a theory that not only did they not try to prove, but one that also is lacking in ANY actual, physical evidence.

Knox has spoken since the ruling, and she’s exactly right on one point: it is really a simple case. Rudy Guede, a drifter from out of the country, raped and killed her. He had a separate trial, where he was convicted of raping and murdering her. He allegedly committed some other break-ins around that time, also armed with a knife. After the murder, he fled the country, and was later caught in Germany. His fingerprints, DNA, and other implicating evidence at the scene, let to his conviction. He blamed the murder on a shadowy Italian man, but his claim was rejected.

That should be the end of the case. But political issues, personalities, and media coverage have driven the prosecution of Knox and Sollecito. The original prosecutor on the case has a history of wild sexual allegations: he was later convicted of abuse of office, though that conviction was overturned. It’s like they let Nancy Grace be the prosecutor and the jury.

Ironically, I like that the Italian courts issue documentation of their reasoning for verdicts. Every lawyer who practices in this country has experienced verdicts, and even judicial rulings, that are incongruous and baffling. However, when the court issues its ruling, and the reasoning proves to be just as baffling, it makes you shake your head. The death of Meredith Kercher is a tragedy, one for which the killer has already been held responsible. The courts do not honor her memory by politically driven, poorly reasoned and specious prosecutions.

Judge in Amanda Knox Retrial Makes Potentially Inappropriate Statements

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox

The judge that presided over the trial that reinstated the guilty verdict of American Student Amanda Knox and her former paramour, Rafaelle Sollectio, mades some public comments about the case. That’s apparently considered improper in an Italian court, as it is here, for a judge to comment on a case that is still going on. Reports indicate it is suspect for a judge to comment on a case while the appeals have yet to be exhausted. This judge did not even wait for the formal order, which won’t be released for a few weeks. Knox’s attorneys say that it indicates prejudice on behalf of the judge, and will try to use it in their favor as they continue to challenge the conviction. After the judgment, appeal will follow, apparently this time to the Italian supreme court, but that appeal won’t be decided until next year (making the extradition talk a little premature.)

I will try to be sure to include on all my Knox related posts that Rudy Guede, the actual killer, has been caught, convicted and is serving time for murder Meredith Kercher.

Amanda Knox Guilty in Retrial in Italian Murder Case

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox and her former paramour Rafalle Sollecito were found guilty by the Italian appellate court hearing the retrial of their murder charges. The court essentially reinstated the guilty verdict from the first trial, which had be thrown out on appeal, then sent back for this retrial on second tire review. This verdict will also be appealed. Knox remains out of custody in the United States. If a final judgment is entered, Italy may seek her extradition back to serve the 28 year sentence. Such a judgment is months if not years away, pending the new appellate process. Knox has indicated she will not return voluntarily if ordered back into custody.

Extradition will not be automatic. Italy and other countries often refuse extradition to the United States for murder cases, due to the death penalty here. That won’t be an issue for extradition from the United States, but there are several challenges. The U.S. courts could have a due process concern, as the Italy appellate process resembles a retrial, which generally wouldn’t be permitted under our double jeopardy provision. Such concerns will only come up if the verdict is upheld.

Knife DNA in Amanda Knox Case Negative

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox

Actually, the final DNA sample from the knife, found in Rafaelle Sollecito’s apartment was matched to Amanda Knox, which is not surprising since it was in her boyfriend’s house where she often stayed. That’s important because it was negative for the DNA of victim Meredith Kercher, further evidence that it was not the murder weapon authorities have tried to prove it was, to link Knox and Sollecito to the murder. The murder which we know was perpetrated by Rudy Guede, whose DNA also has not been found on the knife. The evidence in the case has been disputed or found unreliable, and the prosecution theory appears more and more to be mere conjecture… contrary to much of the evidence. The retrial continues in Italy.

A Top to Bottom Take-Down of the Amanda Knox Prosecution


Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox

This ran in England’s Daily Mail Online, and it eviscerates the prosecution of Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito. It goes through the case very thoroughly, top-to-bottom. This is probably going to be more controversial in the U.K. than here, as the British media was very bullish on the case, dubbing Amanda “Foxy Knoxy”. The story makes even more sense if you know the history of the prosecutor’s previous false allegations, and the fact that he was at one point convicted of abuse of office. The murder of Meredith Kercher is an absolute tragedy. The man responsible, Rudy Guede: a drifter who had committed other burglaries in proximity to this one, has been convicted of that murder. The unsupported orgy or satanic cult claims are ludicrous, and the discredited evidence the government wishes to rely on produced a tainted trial.

New Software Suggests Amanda Knox’s DNA Was Not at the Crime Scene

I did not realize the distinction between “low-template DNA” and the full DNA profiles that are generally considered to be extremely reliable. The so-called LTDNA profiles can be generated from a few cells, but often do not have enough material to build a reliable profile. While the reliability of DNA testing is well-known, and generates a high level of confidence, the distinction between those reliable profiles and the LTDNA profiles has not been publicly covered as much. People hear DNA evidence, and they jump to conclusions where there are wildly differing types of DNA evidence.

David Balding, a researcher in London, has developed new software to evaluate the reliability of LTDNA. Geneticist Peter Gill says that implementation of this type of evaluation is long overdue. He says that methods to evaluate and interpret LTDNA currently in use are ineffective. Such evidence may be excludable in U.S. courts if it does not meet the reliability standard to be admitted into evidence.The difficulty in providing a full profile, coupled with the possibility of contamination affect the probabilities of accuracy in determining identification.  DNA contamination, due to a poorly handled crime scene, was one of the issues that caused the murder convictions against Amanda Knox and Rafaelle Sollecito to be overturned. Balding’s software indicates that it was very unlikely that Amanda Knox was at the scene of the crime in this case. 

As the case is headed for retrial, there is time for there to review the reliability of the DNA and/or LTDNA evidence and its implications on Knox’s guilt or innocence. Hopefully, only evidence that is scientifically reliable will be considered in the final determination on the case.