Posts Tagged ‘raffaele sollecito’

What Marasca-Bruno Supreme Court said about Raffaele Sollecito

February 7, 2017

rs-and-lawyers

Bongiorno, Sollecito, Maori legal team

Compensation claim by Raffaele Sollecito

UPDATE

BREAKING:   Claim thrown out! ‘ANSA) – PERUGIA, FEBRUARY 11 – Rejected by the Court of Appeal of Florence, the claim for wrongful imprisonment advanced by Raffaele Sollecito, finally acquitted of the charge of having participated in the murder of Meredith Kercher. He asked over 500 thousand euro for almost four years in jail before being released from prison. As learned by ANSA Tuscan courts have held contradictory his statements in the initial survey. ‘ – Too many lies in the early stages.

Motivation Report of the Florence Compensation Claim Dismissal now available:

This translation was done by a group of unpaid volunteers who are regular posters on the Perugiamurderfile.org message board devoted to discussing the murder of Meredith Kercher in Perugia, Italy, in November of 2007. The translation and editorial team was international in its make-up.

It was completed in February 2017, having been undertaken for the sole purpose of promoting a better understanding of this complex case, and to ensure that the facts are readily available to the English-speaking world without selective emphasis, misstatement or bias.

It has been translated on a “best efforts” basis, and has gone through multiple rounds of proofreading and editing, both to ensure its accuracy and to harmonize the language insofar as possible. Persons fluent in both Italian and English are invited and encouraged to contact PMF if they find any material errors that influence the meaning or intention of the judges. All such corrections will be investigated, made as required and brought to the attention of the public. The original Italian document is twelve pages long.

As with any translation, some terminology in Italian has no direct equivalent in English. Explanations have been provided where relevant. Similarly, readers are encouraged to submit any questions about legal or other concepts that may arise as they peruse the report. Our goal is to make the report as clear and as accurate as possible; to this end, it will be amended whenever doing so promotes this goal.

As the report was written and published in Italian, that language prevails in the event of a dispute over interpretation. This English-language version is provided for readers’ convenience only; accordingly, it is a free translation and has no legal authority or status.

This translation may be freely copied or otherwise reproduced and transmitted in the unedited pdf format, provided that the translation or any excerpt therefrom is accompanied by the following attribution: “From the translation prepared by unpaid volunteers from http://www.perugiamurderfile.org to promote a better understanding of the circumstances surrounding the death of Meredith Kercher and the case against Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito in the English-speaking world”.

The compensation claim

Raffaele Sollecito, represented by his attorneys throughout the process, Avvocato Giulia Bongiorno and Luca Maori, is currently claiming compensation for ‘wrongful imprisonment’ in respect of the four years he served of a sentence of 25 years handed down for the Aggravated Murder of Meredith Kercher, 1 Nov 2007.  The conviction was controversially overturned by the final Italian Supreme Court in March 2015, and its Motivational Report published – some three months late – in September 2015.  It was only then Sollecito was able to commence compensation proceedings, as the Italian Penal Code provides for this, given, its long-winded legal process whereby defendants accused of serious crimes (i.e., one with a sentence of over three years custody) can be held on remand whilst awaiting trial.  In theory, this should only be for up to one year.

The issues with the Marasca ruling

The Marasca verdict is considered controversial because Sollecito and his co-defendant, Amanda Knox had been found guilty at the first instance trial court (merits), which was upheld on appeal.  It is unusual for the Supreme Court to have not remitted the case back to  the Appeal (second instance) court as the Penal Code – as is standard in the UK and the USA – does not allow the Supreme Court to assess facts found at trial.  The correct procedure is to send the disputed evidence back to the court which in the opinion of the Supreme court erred.  Marasca did not rule a Section 530,1 ‘Not Guilty’ acquittal, but a Section 530, 2 ‘Not Guilty’ ‘insufficient evidence’, which some say is similar to Scottish Law, ‘Not Proven’.However, the wording used, proscioglimento indicates a pre-trial ‘charges dropped’, rather than ‘acquittal’ (assoluzione).

Sollecito and Knox made several applications against being held in custody whilst awaiting trial and were turned down at every stage, including appeals and an application for ‘house arrest’ in lieu.

The prosecution opposed the application on the grounds of the seriousness of the crime, and in Knox’ case, the standard ground that she might flee the country, as a foreigner to Italy.  In addition, the prosecution had used special preventative powers to isolate the defendants (Knox, Sollecito and Guede) to prevent tampering with witnesses, a power which had been added to the Penal Code to assist in the fight against mafia gangs who did intimidate witnesses, often through their lawyers.  Therefore the law allowed the prosecutors to deny the defendants an attorney until just before their remand hearings.

Sollecito’s challenges

However, the award of compensation for having (a) been held in remand, and (b) serving a sentence until such time the conviction was overturned, is not automatic.  The applicant has to show that they are factually ‘not guilty’, i.e., cannot possibly have committed the crime, perhaps because the ‘real perpetrator’ has come to light, or ‘new evidence’ presented.  Neither of these scenarios apply in Sollecito’s case.  Whilst a defendant is allowed to ‘lie’ and indeed, does not need to swear an oath in testifying, this only holds true if they are guilty.    Marasca did not find Sollecito or Knox, ‘Not Gulty’ as per Article 530,1, the common or garden ‘Not Guilty’ verdict.

Further, Sollecito refused to testify at his own trial, and made various misrepresentations and lies to the police.  He argues in current tv and radio show rounds – for example, in the recent Victoria Derbyshire BBC morning show – that as he was a ‘collector of knives’ and had always carried a knife around since age thirteen, ‘To carve on tables and trees’, he explains, and thus argues, the police should not have viewed this with suspicion when he attended the questura carrying one in the days after the murder.

Sollecito’s other difficulty is that Marasca, whilst criticising the investigation as ‘flawed’, and this being the main reason for acquittal, it nonetheless cuts Sollecito little slack.

How Marasca cuts Sollecito little slack

From the Marasca Supreme Court Motivational Report, Sept 2015:

It remains anyway strong the suspicion that he [Sollecito] was actually in the Via della Pergola house the night of the murder, in a moment that, however, it was impossible to determine. On the other hand, since the presence of Ms. Knox inside the house is sure, it is hardly credible that he was not with her.

And even following one of the versions released by the woman, that is the one in accord to which, returning home in the morning of November 2. after a night spent at her boyfriend’s place, she reports of having immediately noticed that something strange had happened (open door, blood traces everywhere); or even the other one, that she reports in her memorial, in accord to which she was present in the house at the time of the murder, but in a different room, not the one in which the violent aggression on Ms. Kercher was being committed, it is very strange that she did not call her boyfriend, since there is no record about a phone call from her, based on the phone records within the file.

Even more if we consider that having being in Italy for a short time, she would be presumably uninformed about what to do in such emergency cases, therefore the first and maybe only person whom she could ask for help would have been her boyfriend himself, who lived only a few hundred meters away from her house.

Not doing this signifies Sollecito was with her, unaffected, obviously, the procedural relevance of his mere presence in that house, in the absence of certain proof of his causal contribution to the murderous action.

The defensive argument extending the computer interaction up to the visualization of a cartoon, downloaded from the internet, in a time that they claim compatible with the time of death of Ms. Kercher, is certainly not sufficient to dispel such strong suspicions. In fact, even following the reconstruction claimed by the defence and even if we assume as certain that the interaction was by Mr. Sollecito himself and that he watched the whole clip, still the time of ending of his computer activity wouldn’t be incompatible with his subsequent presence in Ms. Kercher’s house, given the short distance between the two houses, walkable in about ten [sic] minutes.

An element of strong suspicion, also, derives from his confirmation, during spontaneous declarations, the alibi presented by Ms. Knox about the presence of both inside the house of the current appellant the night of the murder, a theory that is denied by the statements of Curatolo, who declared of having witnessed the two together from 21:30 until 24:00 in piazza Grimana; and by Quintavalle on the presence of a young woman, later identified as Ms. Knox, when he opened his store in the morning of November 2.

An umpteenth element of suspicion is the basic failure of the alibi linked to other, claimed human interactions in the computer of his belongings, albeit if we can’t talk about false alibi, since it’s more appropriate to speak about unsuccessful alibi.

Sollecito in his police interview of the 5 Nov 2007, shortly after which he was arrested, withdrew his alibi from Amanda Knox.  During the Nencini appeal phase, he and his advocate, Bongiorno, called a press conference to underline that Sollecito ‘could not vouch for Knox’ whereabouts between 8:45 pm and 1:00 am on the night of the murder.  Sollecito has never once retracted this withdrawal of an alibi for Amanda.  

Further, Marasca states:

The defensive argument extending the computer interaction up to the visualization of a cartoon, downloaded from the internet, in a time that they claim compatible with the time of death of Ms. Kercher, is certainly not sufficient to dispel such strong suspicions.

In fact, even following the reconstruction claimed by the defence and even if we assume as certain that the interaction was by Mr. Sollecito himself and that he watched the whole clip, still the time of ending of his computer activity wouldn’t be incompatible with his subsequent presence in Ms. Kercher’s house, given the short distance between the two houses, walkable in about ten [sic] minutes.

Sollecito had claimed he was surfing the internet until 3:00 am in one statement and claimed to have watched Naruto cartoon until 9:45 pm on the murder night. It winds up:

The technical tests requested by the defence cannot grant any contribution of clarity, not only because a long time has passed, but also because they regard aspects of problematic examination (such as the possibility of selective cleaning) or of manifest irrelevance (technical analysis on Sollecito’s computer) given that is was possible, as said, for him to go to Kercher’s house whatever the length of his interaction with the computer (even if one concedes that such interaction exists), or they are manifestly unnecessary, given that some unexceptionable technical analysis carried out are exhaustive (such are for example the cadaver inspection and the following medico-legal examinations).

Leading to the verdict:

Following the considerations above, it is obvious that a remand [rinvio] would be useless, hence the declaration of annulment without remand, based on art. 620 L) of the procedure code, thus we apply an acquittal [proscioglimento *] formula [see note just below] which a further judge on remand would be anyway compelled to apply, to abide to the principles of law established in this current sentence.

*[Translator’s note: The Italian word for “acquittal” is actually “assoluzione”; while the term “proscioglimento” instead, in the Italian Procedure Code, actually refers only to non-definitive preliminary judgments during investigation phase, and it could be translated as “dropping of charges”. Note: as for investigation phase “proscioglimento” is normally meant as a non-binding decision, not subjected to double jeopardy, since it is not considered a judgment nor a court’s decision.] http://themurderofmeredithkercher.com/The_Marasca-Bruno_Report_(English)

The Issues Facing the Florence Appeal Court

Sollecito has clearly passed the first hurdle of being eligible to have a hearing for compensation.  His legal team have asked for the maximum €516,000.  A claimant who can successfully plead ‘wrongful imprisonment’ can claim €500, per diem imprisonment, up to a cap of €516,000.

Sollecito’s legal team have referred to Marasca’s criticism of the investigation as grounds for the full compensation, claiming Sollecito’s “innocence and loss of youthful endeavours” because of the ‘flaws’.  Problem is, the issue of investigative flaws was never pleaded at trial, or at least, not upheld, by either the trial or appeal court judge.  Marasca never really explains in which way this was a proven fact.

The Prosecutor’s Office based at Florence is opposing the application.  I would expect they will be relying on Matteini’s remand hearing and Gemmelli’s written reasons rejecting Sollecito’s appeal against being kept in custody until the hearing.

The three judges who on 27 January 2017 in a hearing listed for five days announced they would issue their verdict ‘within five days’, as of 7 Feb 2017, some seven working days later, have yet to make a decision.  Alternatively, the decision has been made, but the public and press have not yet accessed it.  It could be Sollecito’s legal team have yet to call a press conference, whilst they study the findings.

The panel will decide:

  • is Sollecito entitled to compensation?
  • if so, how much?
  • did he lie to police or mislead them?
  • if so, to what extent was he contributory to his being remanded?
  • to what extent the ‘flawed investigation’ a factor in his ‘wrongful imprisonment’?
  • should Sollecito receive compensation for the one year remand in custody leading up to the trial?
  • should he be compensated for the three further years of a sentence served as a convicted prisoner, six months of it in solitary confinement?
  • should this be for both of the above, either of the above, or neither of them?

Watch this space!

bongiorno-maori

Sollecito has made noises that he plans further legal action against the prosecutor, based on Marasca’s criticisms in its Motivational Report.

Sources: The Murder of Meredith Kercher com  True Justice for Meredith Kercher

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TEN FACTS the makers of the Netflix film ‘AMANDA KNOX’ don’t want you to know!

January 1, 2017
 rodandbriRod Blackhurst and Brian McGinn, Directors of ‘Amanda Knox’ netflix film

What they do not tell you in the ‘documentary’ film

Ten damning facts, which give an insight into why Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were originally properly convicted.  They were then acquitted because of ‘other’ extraneous factors.  The fact that the filmakers, Rod Blackhurst and Brian McGinn, conceal the facts found at trial, indicates an elaborate attempt to fool the viewing public.

The pair had ample opportunity to research the original court documents – of which the key ones are translated – so one can surmise the aim was not objectivity.  However, they fail to declare their vested interest, as long-time avid pro-Knox/Sollecito supporters.

 

For those without access to youtube flashplayer, here’s a plain version:

 

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Content by KrissyG1

Credits:

http://www.themurderofmeredithkercher.com

http://truejustice.org

Basic ’10 facts’ template design: Countess Castiglione @parislover
Music:
Danse Macabre by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Source: http://incompetech.com/music/royalty-free/index.html?collection=005
Artist: http://incompetech.com/

Meredith Kercher

December 28, 2016

RIP You’ll Never Walk Alone

 

A touching poem from her sister, Stephanie reminds us of how precious she was and how she touches us still.

 

This video was uploaded by me last year, after a disappointing year for justice, with the alleged perpetrators of her untimely death being controversially acquitted in March 2015, by the Italian Supreme Court in the Fifth Chambers.

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa3

28 Dec 1985 – 1 Nov 2007

Today, on what would have been her 31st birthday, we still keep hope in our hearts for justice.

 

Walk on, with hope in your heart, and you’ll never walk alone.

RUDY GUEDE : FACTS AND FICTION

December 19, 2016

THE REAL LEGAL POSITION

What is the legal situation of Rudy Guede, as set out by the courts?

rg-rai

Rudy Guede appearing on RAI3 Italian tv January 2016 with Franca Leosini

Rudy Guede’s appeal against his conviction continues

UPDATE: 19 Feb 2017 Rudy Guede’s legal team has now lodged an appeal with the Italian Supreme Court, in Rome, against the decision of the Florence Appeal Court to reject his application for a review of his conviction.  In the original appeal, ‘contradictions between verdicts’ was cited, referring to the Marasca-Bruno Supreme Court acquitting Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, but yet stating there were ‘multiple attackers’ at the murder scene.

It could even be that because of the written reasons by Florence in rejecting Raffaele Sollecito’s compensation claim, there are further legal grounds for a review.  The Sollecito Florence Appeal seems to challenge Sollecito being acquitted, as it lists at least five misdemeanours which are the grounds of refusing compensation under Art 314, which allows prisoners wrongly held in custody to apply for an award, but bars those deemed to have contributed to their incarceration.

Rudy Guede is also due out on leave again, this time in Perugia, it is reported.

Rudy Hermann Guede is back in Perugia. It ‘happened last December when, taking advantage of one of the special permits of which have benefited in recent months, was a guest of his elementary school teacher who has never ceased to take care of him. In addition, according to the findings, the boy, the only definitively convicted for the murder of British student Meredith Kercher, will return for another term in Perugia shortly.

The appeal to the Supreme Court Meanwhile, his lawyers Thomas Pietrocarlo and Monica Grossi, after the Court of Appeal of Florence had branded as inadmissible their request filed for a new trial, filed a petition in the Supreme Court. The Supreme court judges may then cancel with the order issued from Florence, or confirm it, putting an end for ever in the judicial history of Rudy Guede who has always said he is innocent.

http://tuttoggi.info/rudy-permesso-premio-perugia-gli-avvocati-vanno-cassazione-la-revisione/381739/

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Rudy Guede at the time of his arrest

I plan to sort out the facts from the fiction and to provide a definitive review of what the legal facts concerning Guede are, as rubber-stamped by the Supreme Court in Guede’s case, and how the Supreme Court verdict in the Knox / Sollecito case impacts on it.  Guede has brought an application for a review of his case, listed 20 Dec 2016, citing ‘internal inconsistencies’ within the Marasca-Bruno reasoning in respect of Knox and Sollecito.

A good starting point might be the recent crimepod broadcast by ex-FBI agent and ex- District Attorney & prosecutor, Jim Clemente, in tandem with Laura Richards, wherein they carry out a ‘behavioural analysis’ of the Guede interview on RAI3an Italiana TV channel earlier this year with interviewer Franca Leosini.  My analysis of their analysis will highlight some of the misconceptions  by Clemente and Richards in this broadcast, which can be accessed here:

https://art19.com/shows/real-crime-profile/episodes/b1351cff-2e9f-4fc0-8128-b17cba402e38

laura-richards-and-jim-clemente

Laura Richards and Jim Clemente – True Crime tv Broadcasters

Separating the facts from the spin

There are many theories about Guede’s role in the Kercher murder case with many assertions becoming common currency, as interested parties, such as Knox and Sollecito compete for the hegemony.   I have referred to original source material to get to the actual facts of the matter.  These consist of Guede’s Prison Diary whilst under extradition proceedings in Koblenz, between 21 Nov 2007 and late November 2007, his Skype conversation 19 Nov 2007 with best friend Giacomo Benedetti, whilst on the run from the police and the detailed Micheli report, Perugia, 28 Oct 2008,the finalised legal findings of fact, and as approved by the Cassazione Supreme Court.  Thus, whether one agrees or disagrees with the court findings or of Guede’s exact role in the crime, these remain the legal position today, and these are the grounds on which Guede is bringing his application for a review to the Florence Appeal Court.

To summarise, the main findings of Micheli are :

  • Guede definitively did not wield the murder knife.
  • He had no meaningful prior contact with Meredith.
  • Therefore he was not invited to the cottage or let in by Meredith, nor had any consensual contact.
  • The burglary and rape mise en scene was a second stage of the crime after the murder.
  • It thus follows that Knox let Guede into the murder cottage.
  • The crime was sexually motivated, and not one motivated by theft.
  • There were multiple assailants – as per DNA and luminol testing and the fact of a return to the scene to rearrange it.
  • Guede did not steal the rent money or the phones.
  • He was guilty of aggravated murder because of his complicity in the attack and failure to stop it as soon as knives were produced.
  • Complicity: “Above all if the certain facts include the consequent outline of that supposed ‘unknown’ (the presence of the three at the scene of the crime) they are abundant, and all abundantly proven”. – Micheli

The spotlight is on the following issues:

  1. Is Clemente’s and Richards’ claim – one of Guede being the ‘lone killer’ grounded in any substance?
  2. The timeline of the events from Guede’s point of view.
  3. Could Guede have been the sole killer?
  4. How do Knox and Sollecito fit in with Guede?
  5. The actual legal position with Guede, as laid down at Guede’s trial.
  6. How this differs from the Fifth Chambers (Knox & Sollecito) Supreme Court’s controversial ruling in March 2015, acquitting the pair on the grounds of Article 530 Para II, ‘Not guilty: due to insufficient evidence’.

The claims of Clemente and Richards

These reflect the views of pro-innocence campaigners of Knox & Sollecito, critiquing Franca Leosini’s tv interview.

During the broadcast several ‘behavioral’ observations are made:

  1. ‘The foundation as to why he is in her room and cottage, DNA inside as well as outside – he is finding a plausible excuse for being there.’

My comment:  Guede did not claim to have made sexual advances in Meredith’s room.

  1. ‘Meredith had locked door from the inside – helped self to drink – Meredith went to bedroom – claimed she was mad at Knox for stealing money and being dirty.’
  2. ‘He said he ‘wouldn’t go with her unless she had a condom. Not appropriate time to get going so got dressed.   As if.!  Leosini cracks, ‘You missed the best part of the evening – ‘No Sex Please We’re British’ – inappropriate – she is flirting with him (Leosini).  She purports to get tough with him, but he dances around the question.’
  3. ‘Got dressed, had bad stomach, had to go to bathroom, kernel of truth – poop in toilet. Before Meredith came in. Trapped in there – he if flushed the toilet, she’d know he was there. She tells him to use that bathroom, in kitchen, then went to bedroom.

My comment:  Guede used the large bathroom which was by the front door.  If He was in there when Meredith unexpectedly returned, it was easy to run out of there.

flatplan

  1. Heard doorbell ring, Meredith opens door, engages in conversation – 101% it is Amanda. Fallacy – Amanda lives there, why would she ring doorbell?  ‘Meredith had locked inside door.’  There is no reason for Amanda to ring doorbell.

My comment:  the courts agree.  The courts uphold that it was Knox who let Guede in.

  1. Becomes very detailed and specific. He saying look, I’m very clean. Poor boy ‘found myself in Germany’.  101% – extending.
  2. Why would Amanda ring, Rudy’s explanation. Identifies someone by voice – despite listening to very loud music.  Hears girls arguing, puts on ear phones to block out- 2.5 songs – 10 minutes.    It’s a lie. The attack on MK took about 10”.  Kernel of truth in the lie.

My comment:  Guede says he put on headphones after hearing initial greetings.  However, Micheli agrees that how come Guede only hear the last scream, form 4-5 metres away, when a nearby resident, witness Mrs Capezelli, heard a series from 70 metres away.

  1. It was Meredith coming home, not Amanda, we ‘know as a fact’ it didn’t happen. His sleeve had the victim’s DNA. He carried a knife consistent with bloody impression on bed.

My comment:  There is no evidence Guede carried a knife.  At the Milan nursery trespass 27 Oct 2007, Guede was found with a knife which belonged to the nursery so had not carried it with him.

  1. Scream louder than his music, runs to Meredith’s room, lights off. So concerned about his image in terms of cleanliness.  He leaves a dying girl alone.  ‘Lights were suddenly not on’ coming out of the bathroom into the hall, but were on in her room.
  2. Can only describe the jacket – guy facing Meredith. Guy turns starts flashing with his scalpel.  Happened so fast, did didn’t know what was in his hand.  He says, ‘I said’, not what happened.  Recount what happened, not ‘when I testified I said this’ – leakage – skips ahead.  ‘This is the story I am sticking to’.  It shows he is trying to keep to the story he testified.
  3. “He turned around and came to me I didn’t see his face”. Quotes self.  Not in the moment any more.  Wildly gesticulating hands – struggling for words.  Cognitive load, wants to get it right.  Story trying to remember.  How do you remember insignia but not face? (The brand logo on the man’s jacket.)

My comment:  The light was described as an abat-jour.  This is Italian for ‘bedside lamp’, and probably refers to the one in the sitting/kitchen area, which leads to Meredith’s and Amanda’s bedrooms and small bathroom.

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‘The hallway is actually a sitting room area, together with the kitchen.  The door at the far end leads to the bedrooms of Meredith Kercher and Amanda Knox and to the small bathroom.

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 Guede explains he was busy concentrating on the blade in the man’s hand.  The man’s face would have been back lit.  Good point about Guede reverting back to testimony.

  1. German police found he had a cut on his hand.- ‘you were focused on his hand’ – ‘I said I thought it was a scalpel. It could have been a knife 12” long 7” blade.  So he says, ‘I thought’ but didn’t know.  Mignini argued, ‘There are two knives’.  Rudy and Mignini are ‘perverted accomplished liars’  (Clemente’s view).  ‘Pissed off with Mignini for perverting justice.  Collusion’.  Man fleeing.  RG backed out of way.

My comment: the fact of at least two knives was decided by the courts after expert witness testimony and not up to the prosecutor.

  1. Says he saw Amanda walking away outside. Statement made to Mignini – You must have seen her, you must have seen her! –  I saw her silhouette a long way into the night. –  Voice over music in earphone from bathroom.   Mignini pushing his agenda to ID Amanda.  ‘Man is like – had beret with red band, jacket’ ; called out to other person, let’s run before they catch us; black man found’ odd thing to say .  ‘Great! We just killed Kercher, we’ve got a black man here we can blame!’

My comment:  the courts agree this is Guede being self-serving.  The fact he doesn’t mention the silhouette until later, could be preclusion from reading the press.

  1. Hero, he finds Meredith bleeding – runs out of bedroom to grab towel x 2. Grabs third towel, that didn’t work, so left. Said she was alive. Was able to run into Romanelli’s room – sees Amanda run away with this young man.  Made silhouette ID in time period there is a dying woman on the floor.  More important than helping Meredith is to go to Filomena’s room to ID these people.

My comment:  No DNA on towels due to environmental degradation, but someone did apply them. 

  1. Why, If he is already 101% certain it was Amanda? No reason except to please the prosecutor.  All of a sudden, people saw the three together.  Pressuring others.  Mignini ends up giving Rudy  a fast track trial.  – he wouldn’t have to testify on any subsequent trial.  Takes first amendment against self-incrimination, should have to testify in Amanda and Raffaele’s case – he was not used.

My comment:  Mignini as a prosecutor (district attorney) has no authority to provide legal advice.  Guede would have been advised by his counsel to take the fast track as it offers the incentive of a third off discount from the sentence.  He pleaded, ‘Not Guilty’ therefore, he had the right to decline giving any further self-incriminating testimony, as exercised by Sollecito himself in his trial.  There are mechanisms.  A party can appeal for other documents or transcripts in evidence instead (as Mignini did at one stage) and it is up to the presiding judge whether to accept the application or dismiss it.  It is the Judge’s or the defendant’s decision, not the prosecutor’s.

  1. Why does he want the fast track? – wait. He has to say he stayed in bathroom for that long.  This other person did it, when he left, Rudy was trying to stop the bleeding.  Meredith was saying af – writing on the  wall ‘in her blood’ – there’s a desk right there.  Why didn’t he alert for help?   Has to construct a narrative to make sense.  How does this person get in when door was locked?  What we hear in his narrative is how he is overwhelmed.  He is the victim, everyone feels sympathy for him.

My comment:  In his original claims he says he was in the bathroom between six and ten minutes.  Later Guede changes this to ‘lightning fast’, although he may have meant the supposed fight between him and the mystery man.

  1. He hears scream. The broadcast host, Laura Richards, says she once saw someone run into a room and stab someone.  Stabbing had very little blood.  Saw stab put pressure on it.  Quick in and out – what prisoners do.  Will never forget the guy’s face.  Guy turned ran out, Guede could not remember the guy’s face.  Would he forget?  In the only lit room.  Light is on this guy, why can’t he ID his face? – clearly lying.    Afraid he’d be blamed.  What does he do, he goes out drinking with his friends – he is establishing an alibi.  He ran out of country ‘because he was afraid’ – alibiing himself.

My comment  The issue of the blood spurt is an important one, which I shall deal with further on.

  1. Clever narrative because of kernel of truth. Always wants to be seen as victim.  ‘Why didn’t you call for help?’ a six-year old would ask – he starts to talk over her – the real him.  ‘The investigators didn’t believe your point’.   Sad fact is, that black people do get blamed for crime – he is lumping himself in with them.  OJ?  Exactly same situation – charismatic, wants people to think he’s a victim.  How he left Meredith.  Details of crime scene.
  2. When he left Meredith she was fully dressed. In his story, Amanda had argument with Meredith killed her, then ran away everything was in order except one drawer pulled out.  Filomena’s room undisturbed.
  3. If he saw her, she must have seen him. Raffaele must have told Amanda man there.  Why would Amanda then come back?  Feel bad for anyone who believes this crap.  ‘Judge didn’t believe your version of events’.  Why did someone come back and alter the crime scene?’  He left Meredith fully clothed, with full details of clothes she was wearing but can’t remember the guy’s face. 

My comment:  Guede describes Meredith as wearing a white top.  Robyn Butterworth (friend) testified Meredith was wearing a sky-blue zip up top with sporty arm stripes, with a beige top underneath, and perhaps a second, patterned one.

  1. Franca Leosini says left foot and face showing. Crime scene staged , as a legal fact.   Glass and rock on top of clothes, rock thrown from inside. Glass and rock on top.  Rudy gets specific about Knox and Sollecito; not in dispute they were there.  Judge said Rudy wasn’t the one who had the knife and dealt the blow, not in dispute.  It is now in dispute, they were declared ‘innocent of the crime’.

My comment:  False: there is zero mention Knox and Sollecito were ‘declared innocent’.

  1. Rudy did it in concert with two people – it is a legal point of law and cannot be appealed – certified fact. Once evaluated it was 100% fraudulent, not a mistake.  People would be fired if they did not say what Mignini wanted them to say.  If they disagreed, they weren’t called to testify. (Clemente’s views.)

My comments:  Mignini and later Comodi only get to choose the prosecution witnesses, the defence get to call whomsoever they wish.

  1. Leosini: You fled to Germany. Guede:  I had no idea how I got there, it could have been Russia.  Conversely, they (Knox/Sollecito) did not run.  Rudy trusts the system.  Skyped with his friend Giacomo for four hours.  Threw away clothing. Choosing not to give an account.
  2. Specifically says, ‘Amanda was not there’. Why bring it up at this point?  Friend says Amanda was arrested.  Friend brought her up.  Police direct the conversation.  Says clearly, ‘She was not there’.  Rudy gets it from Mignini.  Mignini gets Rudy to ID Knox – silhouette, knife.  Patrick Lumumba has a proven alibi, so they needed another black man there, which is why Amanda volunteered his name.

My comment:  Knox was not arrested ‘for no reason’.

  1. Accomplished liar. Part 9, Leosini talks through the forensics consensual foreplay.  Palm print, DNA on toilet paper . Interesting leakage about Patrick being there – he gets vociferous there, true self.  Why fast track trial?  He says because of his ‘non-involvement’.  More than one person.  Sentence reduced from 30 to 16 on assumption he did not hold the knife. ‘He went along with others’; someone else’s initiative.
  2. Jan 2016. People are still sticking to their beliefs Sollecito and Knox are still guilty.  Reformed character, artsy, intellectual.  Served sentence because, “I didn’t call for help”.  Lawyers have been very strategic – stylised interview – deliberate choice.  FB and twitter set up.
  3. All evidence points to him being only killer and guilty of murder and sexual assault. He’s charismatic, intelligent, detail-oriented no sign of remorse.  Psychopath; gifted at selling himself. Takes a trained eye to see the holes in his story. Let Meredith die; fled country only after he went drinking with his friends.    Foster father says he is ‘an accomplished liar’.  Multiple perpetrators.
  4. Retrial 20 Dec will be interesting.  Already eligible for parole.  2018  By the time the motivation comes out.  Opens everything up for Kercher family.  This interview may have been the grounds on which the appeal for a review is granted.  Engaging charismatic young man – interview is a strategy to get him out.  “Amanda got away with murder.”  It was because of Mignini.  He used Rudy to get Amanda.  Should be prosecuted.  Recommendation: Amanda wrongfully convicted and then exonerated. JC and LR.

My coment: Mignini was nothing to do with ultimate conviction.  That was solely for the courts to decide.

Timeline of events from Guede’s Perspective

Early life

Born in the Ivory Coast 26 Dec 1987 six months older than Knox and three years younger than Sollecito.  Came to Italy with his father Roger, aged five, rejected by his mother.  Lived with a series of foster families, including a wealthy local family, whom he left as soon as he reached age of majority.  Stayed with an aunt in Lecca.  Took up various short-term jobs, had periods of unemployment, tended to ‘disappear’.  His childhood friend Mancini, the son of Guede’s teacher, Mrs Tiberi tried to keep tabs on him.  His last job he was fired from for sickness without a note, took up bedsit in Perugia in early September 2007 nearby Sollecito and the cottage.  Socialised with the Spanish contingent in his house.  Mrs Tiberi described Guede as always polite and well-behaved.  His childhood friends, Mancini and Benedetti, say they never saw him take drugs or get drunk, although latterly they had not seen him much.  His more short-term acquaintances mentioned witnessing him drunk at various times.

Guede gets into trouble

A witness claimed he had said he wanted to go to Milan for a few days ‘to dance’.  In Milan 27 Oct 2007, just a few days before the murder, he was caught trespassing at a nursery, but was not charged at the time.  He was found in possession of a stolen laptop, a knife found at the nursery, a ladies watch and a small glass-breaking hammer.  His mobile phone was confiscated, thus claimed to have no phone as of the time of the murder.  He was charged post-murder conviction for the laptop possession.

When Rudy met Amanda

Around the time of a friend’s birthday (Owen), ‘12th or 14th October 2007’ he’d been out celebrating with friends, met up with some basketball playing pals outside, which included the boys in the downstairs apartment of the cottage, Knox approached, whom he had seen before at Patrick’s bar, Le Chic, to say ‘Hi, I’m Amanda from Seattle’, the boys made off towards home, together with Guede.  Knox went into her apartment on the upper level whilst the boys went downstairs and lit up a joint.  Knox came down to join them, and then Meredith later.  This was the first time she met Guede.  Guede relates Meredith had just one toke on the joint and then said she was off to bed, Knox followed shortly after.

Rudy and Meredith

The next time Guede saw Meredith was at a pub called ‘The Shamrock’ where the World Cup Rugby Final between England and South Africa was being played.  This took place 20 Oct 2007.  Witnesses confirm that both Meredith and Guede were present, within groups of friends.  Guede claims to have struck up a banter with Meredith, but there are no witnesses to this and Meredith never mentioned it to her friends if it happened.   On Sunday, Guede went by the cottage to watch the Formula One final after seventeen events.  This took place 21 Oct 2007.  If Guede had struck up a friendship with Meredith, he made no attempt to pop his head around the door to say hello.  Laura Mezzetti, one of the roommates upstairs did witness Guede there, when she came down to ‘buy a smoke for €5’.

Guede then claims to have asked Meredith for a date on the night of Halloween on 31 October 2007 at the Domus nightclub, again there were no witnesses to this and Meredith never mentioned it to anyone.  Both were at the packed night spot. He gives this as the reason he approached the cottage the next evening, 1st Nov 2007, claiming Meredith let him in.  He had a drink from the fridge whilst Meredith went to her room.  He claims he heard her cursing Amanda, as her money was missing; she showed him her drawer where she had kept it; he calmed her down; they searched the cottage together and, after chatting about their families; they began canoodling.  They had no condoms so it went no further.

Guede’s version of the murder

As Meredith had not been home when he first arrived circa 20:20 pm, he had gone to see his friend Alex and then went to buy a kebab whilst he waited.  Because of the effects of the kebab, Guede claimed that whilst at the cottage, he had to rush to the bathroom and whilst there, the doorbell rang, Meredith who had been on her way to her room, answered the door and Guede heard Amanda’s voice with Meredith saying, ‘We need to talk’ and Amanda reply, ‘What’s happened?  What is the problem?’

Guede put on his earphones to listen to loud music for ten minutes when he heard a loud scream, ran out, the light was now off, ‘to my astonishment’, saw the figure of a man standing on the threshold of Meredith’s room, who suddenly turned with a knife in his hand.  Guede backed off and grabbed a chair in self-defence, the man said, ‘Black man found, black man guilty’ and then ‘Let’s go!’ and ran off.  Guede administerd three towels to the dying girl before himself running off, because he heard a noise from downstairs that frightened him, he claimed.

He ran home via Plaza Grimana direction, changed and washed his jogging pants, then went out nightclubbing.  Rudy in his formal interview said he left the cottage about 22:30.  He has thus been at the scene for about one and a half hours.

Guede flees

3 Nov 2007 he went to Milan via Modena and Bologna and after midnight he jumped on a random train, to avoid police seen at the station, an ended up in Duesseldorf in Germany.  Between then and 19th he stayed in barges and places along the Rhine.  Sixteen days.  Mancini his childhood friend had contacted him 12/13th November via the internet, unaware he was wanted, accusing him of ‘always running away’ and Guede replied, ‘You know why’, without elaborating.  His other old friend, Benedetti helping police, set up a Skype conversation with Guede, 19 Nov 2007,and persuaded him to return.  In the meantime German police caught him on a train without a ticket and on an Interpol warrant, held him in custody in Koblenz until 1 December 2007, whilst processing an extradition order.

Guede was brought back to Italy and subsequently interviewed by prosecutor Mignini 26 March 2008 and charged with the murder, in complicity with Knox and Sollecito.  Guede opted for a separate, ‘fast-track’ trial, which was closed, although we can discern what took place from the presiding Judge’s reasoning (Micheli) for the ‘guilty of aggravated murder’ verdict and the dismissal of the theft charge of the phones and credit cards.

Could Guede have been the Sole Killer?

The Missing Money:  Who first mentioned it?

It was Guede, and he brags about this fact of being first in his Prison Diary written in Koblenz up to 19 Nov 2007.

Who First Mentioned Knox and Sollecito at the scene?

Whilst Guede does refer to a mystery man holding a knife in the doorway of Meredith’s room in his presence, he does not actually name either Knox or Sollecito until his recorded interview with Mignini, March 2008.  We know he read the papers whilst on the run for he mentions to Benedetti in the Skype conversation he saw that Knox is accused of using the washing machine to clean Meredith’s clothes.

An alternate explanation is that he was applying ‘Prisoners Dilemma’, a situation when there are several perpetrators and each is dependent on the other/s to not ‘grass’ them up. Therefore, it is theorised, the best strategy is to say nothing.  Knox did not name him, he did not name Knox.  Guede himself confirms he did not know Sollecito at all to name him.

Who First Mentioned Sollecito and Knox together at the scene with Guede, and when?

A witness, Kokomani did come forward to say he had seen the three together outside the cottage prior to the murder, and police have corroborated he was in the region because of pings from his phone and his account of seeing a dark car, also seen by a separate car mechanic witness.  However, his testimony was dismissed by Micheli as ‘ravings’.  It appears that what holds the three together is circumstantial evidence as constructed by the forensic police (DNA, luminol, bathmat footprint), the inactivity of Knox & Sollecito’s phones in advance of the crime and for the rest of the night, their false alibis and inability to ‘remember’ what they did that evening, together with the apparent staged scene of the burglary, clean up and repositioned body.

The case against Guede 

When comparing Guede’s original account with his later recorded interview, it is safe to note that much of what he says is:

  • To try to establish justification for being at the cottage at all. To do this, he claims to have made a date with Meredith the night before.  However, when he made a date with a Latvian girl in a similar circumstance, they wanted to swap telephone numbers, with Guede having to memorise hers as he did not have a phone at the time.  He does not say this for Meredith.
  • To try to justify his DNA being on Meredith’s body, he precludes this by claiming the contact was consensual. In his conversation with Benedetti he expresses he knows none of his sperm will be found.  In his Prison Diary he makes no mention at all of Meredith talking about her mother being ill.  Micheli points out that his later claim that Meredith spoke about her mother’s specific condition was already widely reported in the papers since 4 November 2007, by Meredith’s aunt.

Formula 1 and World Cup Rugby

  • He claims in his testimony the Formula 1 final race (21 Oct 2007) was BEFORE the Rugby World Cup (20 Oct 2007) – and Micheli does not pick up on this – to evade the fact he didn’t say hello to Meredith when he visited the cottage to watch the F1 race downstairs.  In his Prison Diary he claims Meredith told him she had ‘someone special’ back home, implying she was free in Italy.  However, we know Meredith was in an exciting new relationship with Silenzi, from downstairs, so would not have made herself easily available.  None of the British girls corroborated Guede’s claim to have made friends with Meredith.
  • Guede in both his original Prison Diary  account and in the Leosini tv interview in Jan 2016, expresses disapproval of Meredith cursing out Knox over the missing rent money.  In the interview he becomes quite agitated.  Thus, Guede takes Knox’ side in this dispute and is not a friend of Meredith’s.
  • To try to justify running away without calling for help for Meredith, despite his claim it was ‘another man’ who did the killing, Guede says he was worried he would be blamed because he was Black and because the man said so, before running off. He claims he was frightened off by ‘a noise downstairs’.
  • Most incriminating of all is the description of the blood. Micheli found as a fact that Meredith was stabbed in the neck and then immediately fell backwards into a supine position because (a) of a bruise on the back of her neck indicating a violent jolt, (b) because there is no spray of blood on the desk where one would expect it to be and (c) it was a logical position by which to carry out the sexual assault by Guede.  Her left hand was restrained.  Dr Arpile an expert witness said this was a characteristic of a sexual attack.
  • In his Prison Diary in Koblenz he recalls the stabbing of Meredith was being like the time he was whacked over the head with a stick by his father and blood spurted out of his head ‘like a fountain’. This suggests he may have witnessed the ‘fountain of blood’ spurting from Meredith?
  • In his Prison Diary Guede makes much of the sheer volume of blood.  He sees blood everywhere, and sees nothing but ‘red’ when he closes his eyes to sleep.  Massei in the later trial of Knox and Sollecito, does not agree with Micheli that she was stabbed whilst standing and then falling onto her back, and rules that Meredith was killed whilst forced into a kneeling position.  Where then, did the spray of blood go, when the knife was pulled out, if there is none to be seen on the furnishings and upholstery?  Garofano in Darkness Descending offers his expert forensic opinion that the blood surge would have gone all over the person who withdrew the knife.
  • Guede by his own account relates that his pants were ‘soaking wet’ and he’d had to cover them up with his sweatshirt as he ran home fleeing the scene.
  • Guede states that on his way out, none of the windows were broken and Meredith was full dressed. The broken window and condition of the body were all widely reported so it could be argued that Guede states everything was intact when he left as a self-serving narrative to preclude himself as the culprit.

Micheli’s Fact Finding

Micheli ruled that Guede’s claim to have struck up a first date with Meredith was proven false and therefore it was not Meredith who let him into the cottage.  As Meredith was in a new relationship and no-one could corroborate any date with Guede, she did not consent to any sexual activity with him.   In addition, Knox would not need to ring the doorbell as she had a key and in any case, had Meredith locked the door from the inside, she would have in effect locked Guede in for the night, not to mention locking out Knox.  Therefore, as the burglary was staged – clothes rummaged first and then window broken, bits of paper from the burglary on top of the duvet on top of the body – then it must have been Knox who let him in.

Micheli directs that it is a legal fact that Guede did not wield the knife based on submissions by the prosecutor and that the crime was in complicity with the others.  This was due to the fact that even if Guede only intended a sexual assault, he became culpable of murder ‘as soon as the knives were produced’.

Micheli legally acquitted  Guede of the theft of the phones as he ruled that they were taken ‘to cause their sudden removal’ and not for lucrative gain.  He ruled that the autocall to Meredith’s bank Abbey National logged at circa 22:11 was due to the phone falling from her person to the floor due to her wanting urgent contact with her sick mother, and indeed, there does appear to be an outline in blood in the shape of a phone.

Micheli ruled that Guede did not go through Meredith’s bag as his DNA (which was scant at the scene) was midway on the clasp at the top of the bag, indicating Guede had gripped it to lift and move it, as there is no DNA or blood stains inside it.  In addition, there were multiple differing footprints of sundry persons at the murder scene, as highlighted by luminol, a forensic instrument to make visible invisible blood which had been cleaned up.

  • Complicity: “Above all if the certain facts include the consequent outline of that supposed ‘unknown’ (the presence of the three at the scene of the crime) they are abundant, and all abundantly proven”. – Micheli

 

The March 2015 Fifth Chambers Ruling acquitting Knox and Sollecito

This merely stated that the pair were acquitted because of ‘insufficient evidence’, not because they were ‘innocent’.

It confirmed that Knox,certainly, and Sollecito, ‘almost certainly’, were present at the murder scene, Knox did wash off the victim’s blood from her hands and did cover up for Guede.  It stated that the pair told ‘umpteen lies’ and that their behaviour remains ‘highly suspicious’.

So does Guede have a case, based on the final definitive facts, as set out, above?

We shall see.

Sources:

http://themurderofmeredithkercher.com/Primary_Sources

Netflix ‘Amanda Knox’ 2016 and The Lizard King Donald Trump

November 25, 2016

donald-trump-amanda-knox

How Amanda Knox bites the hand that feeds her

Amanda Knox has been in the news a great deal recently, riding on the crest of an ‘exoneration’ campaign, culminating with the Netflix film, six years in the making, released in Sept 2016.

Netflix caricatures

In the film, the factors that led to her so-called ‘wrongful conviction’ (she claims) included Nick Pisa’s tabloid reportage in that most middle class of UK comics, the  <fx crucifix and garlic>  DAILY MAIL.  Much loved for its doomladen headlines, to the extent GUARDIAN pop hackette, Julie Burchill, famously nicknamed it ‘THE DAILY HORROR’, wherein the non-GUARDIAN-reading masses could immerse themselves daily in an entertaining round of ‘illegal immigrants and asylum seekers flooding the country’, ‘family of 27 given 50-roomed mansion’ and that most loved standby of all, ‘Benefit Scroungers’.

Bearded ‘modern parents’ GRAUNIAD readers, on the other hand, in their peep-toed sandals and chomping of organic vegetarian nut roasts lap up Simon Hattonstone’s bleeding heart eulogies for the wrongfully imprisoned one.  Thus: GUARDIAN hack, good.  Pisa bad.

Then there is the plodding Italian Prosecutor, a Dan Brown-style Italian Catholic  with a paranoia about masonic cults and devilish conspiracies, who sees himself (the film makers claim) as Sherlock Holmes.  So that explains his lurid interest in her!  Not that there is a shred of evidence she had anything to do with Meredith Kercher’s murder.  Yes, it’s all about priggish, obsessive tyrants, still living in the Italian equivalent of the Victorian ages.

Swept along on a wave of her own lies, see above, we are now entertained by the spectacle of Knox claiming that Donald Trump’s support for her, after her original conviction, only made it worse for her, because after all, the Italians were riding on anti-American feelings in convicting her and Sollecito.  But not anti-African, as Rudy Guede did do it.  That’s different.

Knox is now claiming, in her fervent support for the Democrats’ Hillary Clinton, that she despises Trump for his views on the Central Park Five, whom he still refers to as ‘guilty’, despite their exoneration, as contrasted with her, whom he described as ‘completely innocent’.  She sees racism in his stance.  Oh, the irony of Knox fingering an innocent black man for Meredith’s murder.  Paradoxically Knox seems to be saying, they are innocent and Trump calls them guilty, whereas I am guilty and Trump calls me innocent.  All because he’s a racist.  Knox vocally states she does not stand with Trump and why should she vote for him, just because he supported her and helped fund her defence?  These are all good commendable points.  But before we get carried away, whoa!   Let’s stop and take a reality check.

Gift Horse

For the astonishing fact to come out of all of this, is that Knox should indeed be grateful to Trump.  Of course, not to agree with his political views.  However, had her conviction been upheld by the Marasca-Bruno Supreme Court, as all the legal experts expected, Trump, as President of the United States has the power to refuse her extradition.  Not directly, as that is a veto for the State Secretary, but that power is there.

We saw it when Maria Cantwell, senator for Seattle put out a press release – which was taken up globally – calling for the then-State Secretary Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration that the USA should intervene to free Amanda Knox because of the clear anti-American sentiment of the Italian judicial system, she states.

Maria Cantwell even made an appointment to see Clinton saying she had been strongly petitioned by friends of Amanda Knox.

Didn’t the makers of the Netflix film ‘Amanda Knox’, 2016, assert it was the tabloid journalists who had bullied the Italian police and courts?  We see immediately that, true, whilst the mass media is intensely powerful in influencing opinion, it doesn’t actually do anything, except reflect social mores.  The real movers and shakers being politicians and political advisers.

From day one, Amanda Knox had the full weight of American politicians behind her, and, rather than Nick Pisa being responsible for her conviction, it is surely the likes of Donald Trump and influencers in the US State Department responsible for getting her off the charges?  It can be readily seen Knox has a debt of gratitude owing to these shady enforcers behind the scenes.

Senator Cantwell declares war on Italy

Tom Ford of THE WASHINGTON POST writes 06 Dec 2009:

 As angry Americans promised to boycott Italian holidays, wine and food, a vociferous support group calling itself Friends of Amanda Knox urged people to email Barack Obama to ask him to support her appeal.

Maria Cantwell, a US Democrat senator for Washington state has said she plans to bring her own concerns about the trial, including possible anti-Americanism, to the Mrs Clinton’s attention.

Mrs Clinton, the Secretary of State, said on Sunday that she had not yet looked into the case as she had been preoccupied with Afghanistan policy.

She told ABC News: “Of course I’ll meet with Senator Cantwell or anyone who has a concern, but I can’t offer any opinion about that at this time.”

cantwell

Seattle Senator Maria Cantwell

The dastardly DAILY MAIL writes 8.12.2009:

After the verdicts, Knox’s furious father Curt Knox vowed to fight to clear his daughter’s name and spoke of his ‘anger and disbelief’ at the Italian justice system.

His campaign seems to be gaining support on Capitol Hill. Senator Maria Cantwell, from Washington state, declared there were ‘serious questions about the Italian justice system’.

She said she was concerned there had been an ‘anti-American’ feeling at the trial and said she would be raising her concerns with Mrs Clinton.

‘The prosecution did not present enough evidence for an impartial jury to conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that Miss Knox was guilty,’ she said. ‘Italian jurors were allowed to view highly negative news coverage about Miss Knox.’

Mrs Clinton was asked about the trial in an appearance on a U.S. news programme.

She said: ‘Of course I’ll meet with Senator Cantwell or anyone who has a concern but I can’t offer any opinion about that at this time.’

She said she had not expressed any concerns to the Italian government. Last night, Knox’s Italian lawyer distanced himself from the senator’s claims. Luciano Ghirga said: ‘That’s all we need, Hillary Clinton involved. I have the same political sympathies as Hillary but this sort of thing does not help us in any way.’

Prosecutor Giuliano Mignini said: ‘This senator should not interfere in something she has no idea about. I am happy with how the trial went.’ 

Enter the cavalry

Business mogul, Donald Trump tweets 30 Sept 2011:

trump-tweet

In a tv interview with Fox News Greta Van Susteren, Donald Trump explains:

“I helped the family out — I felt very, very badly for that family and for her — I never thought she did it,” Trump told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren. “I watched very intently, like everybody else, and there was just no way she was involved in that.

“And so I did help them out — I feel very, very happy about it — in fact, I said boycott Italy until they release her,” Trump said. “It was really an injustice — and I would get on that plane so fast if I were her and get out.”

Van Susteren asked Trump whether he had ever spoken to her parents. Trump said he had and “well, they’re lovely people.”  Newsmax 4th Oct 2011

Ingrate

Whilst Knox has been complaining loudly about the intervention of Donald Trump the ingrate laughs in the face of the Kercher family who had to struggle financially.  John Kercher writes:

How Foreign Office let us down

We were surprised at the lack  of financial help available from the British Government as  we dealt with the aftermath  of Meredith’s death.

We had received tremendous support from the British Consulate in Florence,  which arranged translation facilities and made transport arrangements, but despite our pleas, we did not receive any financial support from the Foreign Office.

A number of MPs campaigned on our behalf for some contribution towards our flights, but their efforts were to no avail.

Indeed, it seemed this was a policy decision, one that did not affect just us, but anybody who had suffered an ordeal such  as ours. This lack of help was despite the fact that we were obliged to provide testimonies  in court.

Nor could we expect any help from the Italian government. Before Meredith was murdered, EU states had said they would sign an agreement to compensate the families of foreign nationals who were victims of a violent crime committed in their country. 

However, of all the states, Italy failed to sign the agreement in time.

Financially we were alone and it made the business of attending the trial, and seeking justice for Meredith, all the more problematic.  Daily Mail Femail, 15 April 2012

The GUARDIAN has been influential in giving Amanda Knox, in particular, a sympathetic ear.  Nick Richardson GUARDIAN COMMENT writes

 From the outset the innocentisti accused the colpevolisti of anti-Americanism. Following the trial the US senator Maria Cantwell wrote to Hillary Clinton to alert her to the anti-Americanism at work in the courtroom – though Sollecito, an Italian, was being tried too. Was there anti-American sentiment among the colpevolisti? The resentment, even, of a former great imperial power towards the current hegemon? Almost certainly.

But the anti-Italian sentiment flowing in the other direction has been just as concentrated. The managers of Knox’s downfall have come in for savage caricature: Giuliano Mignini, a Perugia public prosecutor, has been portrayed as a senile fuddy-duddy; Monica Napoleoni, head of Perugia’s murder squad, a vindictive bully; Patrizia Stefanoni, who was responsible for collecting forensic evidence from the crime scene, has been slammed for incompetence, though at the time of the crime she was well respected in her field.  Cantwell stated that she had “serious questions about the Italian justice system”, though the state she represents, Washington, currently holds eight people on death row.  30.1.2014

A blogger on My North West astutely ripostes:

 I was intrigued by a press release that came out right after the guilty verdict. Senator Maria Cantwell issued a statement in which she said “I am saddened by the verdict and I have serious questions about the Italian justice system and whether anti-Americanism tainted this trial.”

Anti-Americanism??? I can understand how that could have been a factor during the Bush years when the world hated us.

But once we elected Obama, the world fell in love with the United States all over again. We were once again “welcomed into the world community”… and “no longer a pariah on the world stage”…

How could Senator Cantwell suggest that anti-Americanism played a role in this verdict. Barack Obama is our president – THERE IS NO MORE ANTI-AMERICANISM!!!

I guess the other possibility is that Knox actually whacked the gal…Dori Monson http://mynorthwest.com/75674/amanda-knox-guilty-how-could-this-happen- under-obama/

The ‘abominable’ DAILY MAIL – according to the Netflix film makers – writes:

This high-profile case though, brings a particular set of problems for the Obama administration because of the high emotions if elicits on both sides of the Atlantic – not just in Italy and America, but in the United Kingdom too.

The United States and Italy enjoy a successful extradition relationship, with cooperation high on busting organised crime.

It would cause a potential diplomatic row should the president and John Kerry choose not to send Knox to Italy if her appeal fail.

However, on the flip side, Italy may choose not to anger their most powerful ally over such an emotive case.

Knox herself has said that she would not return to Italy and that would only do so, ‘kicking and screaming.’

Regardless, any decision on whether to extradite the 26-year-old from the U.S. is likely months away, at least. Experts have said it’s unlikely that Italy’s justice ministry would request Knox’s extradition before the verdict is finalized by the country’s high court.

If the conviction is upheld, a lengthy extradition process would likely ensue, with the U.S. State Department ultimately deciding whether to turn Knox back over to Italian authorities to finish serving her sentence.

So far the State Department has refused to be drawn on a position regarding the outcome of the Knox re-trial.

Spokesman Patrick Ventrell was asked in March last year what would be the likely decision and only offered that the verdict was still months away.

‘We can’t really comment beyond that,’ Mr Ventrell told reporters according to the Daily Telegraph. ‘We never talk about extradition from this podium in terms of individual cases.’

 31 Jan 2014

Trump now

So, we see that the decision to extradite would now have been in the remit of Trump’s new Secretary of State – currently in the running are Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani – whether or not to extradite, and with the power to override any treaty with Italy or US court.  From what we see of Trump’s attitude towards the legally exonerated ‘Central Park Five’ and his public disregard in continuing to label them guilty and to refuse to apologise for the ads he took out in four main newspapers calling for the death penalty, it is a short step to his overriding any guilty verdict by the Italian Supreme Court.  Indeed, some observers are convinced of the invisible hand of the US State Department in the background in the recent shock acquittal of the pair.

Another disturbing aspect is the issue of press releases by Maria Cantwell calling on Italy to free Knox.  The question arises, on whose authority was she given permission to issue press releases about sensitive international legal matters?  It seems she then had to petition Hillary Clinton during the appeal process, who prudently declined to comment.

Matt Ford, The Atlantic.com analyses the issue in fine detail 31.1.2014:

Slate’s Justin Peters hypothesized that the U.S. could use Article X of its extradition treaty with Italy, which requires the requesting nation to prove “a reasonable basis to believe that the person sought committed the offense for which extradition is requested,” to block her extradition.

There are more drastic options the U.S. government could take to protect Knox, though. Could Congress and/or President Obama override the extradition treaty with Italy to shield Knox, for example? Yes, says Julian Ku, an international law professor at Hofstra University, but they’re unlikely to do so. “I doubt there will be any need for Congress to intervene,” he said. “If the political winds blow so strongly in favor of Knox, Secretary [of State John] Kerry has all the authority he needs to keep her in the U.S.”  

But even if Italy does request Knox’s extradition, Kerry can still simply refuse regardless of whether there are legal problems, says Ku. “It would be a real diplomatic blow, and a bad policy decision in my view, but neither illegal nor unconstitutional.” 

Earlier this year, Peter Quennell, of TJMK writes:

 Compare with how the UK government reacted after Meredith died. Basically it looked the other way. Many in Italian justice were amazed at how totally disinterested the UK government was in the case in all the years since Meredith’s death.

The US government sprang into action to help Knox and to make sure she was treated right, though there was no proof the Italians would do anything but. They found her a Rome lawyer with good English (Carlos Dalla Vedova) and monitored all her court sessions and her four years in Capanne.

This came at a probable cost of over half a million dollars. And that is just the public support. Nobody ever said “the Federal budget cannot stand this”.

The extent of the British government in pushing justice for Meredith and her family? Exactly zero over the years.

Nothing was ever paid toward the legal costs or the very high travel costs of the Kercher family to be in court as the family finances ran into the ground. Nobody from the Foreign Office in London or the UK Embassy in Rome observed in court except in Florence, just the once.  14 Feb 2016 http://www.truejustice.org/ee/index.php?/tjmk/C350/

In more recent weeks Knox made a powerful denunciation of Trump in the wake of Clinton’s presidential election defeat.

Knox went on to say that Trump called for the death penalty to be reinstated in New York during the Central Park Five case.

“Is it because I is white?”

“Even now, he views (the suspects) as guilty, though they were exonerated when the true perpetrator, a serial rapist, confessed to the crime,” she wrote. “Why did Trump defend me and condemn them? Is it because I was an American on trial in a foreign country? Is it because I’m a white woman?”  www.wftv.com

Stand by me

So, when Amanda Knox declares her opposition to Trump, are we to take her seriously?  Any more so than her claim it was, ‘Nick Pisa wot got me jailed’?

Knox has had all kinds of senior and anonymous political figures involved in her rescue from justice: Cantwell, Kerry, Clinton, Ventrell, President elect, Donald Trump, and faceless officers of the US State department, the latter who appear to have issued a press release to the global media, circa 31 Mar 2015, that they would refuse to extradite.  We need to ask, on whose authority were all these press releases circulated?

It kinda takes your breath away when Knox claims – and as reported in the national press – that she is not ‘standing by Trump’.  To claim firstly that the likes of Nick Pisa is more powerful than US politicians really exposes the manipulative lies of Knox and the Netflix film makers.  Donald Trump is reported in the Italian press in recent days as being ‘bitter’ about Knox’ comments about his donation towards her legal costs, and who can blame him?  Sure, she doesn’t need to share his views, but a little gratitude may have been the better part of valour.

Trump and his views on law and order

THE WASHINGTON POST interviewed Kevin Richardson, one of the five 8 Oct 2016

Trump became a part of this widely reported and closely followed crime story when, two weeks after the teens were arrested, he spent a reported $85,000 placing full-page ads in all four major New York daily newspapers.

“Just like those ads, that speech was a call for extreme action based on a whole set of completely false claims. It seems,” Richardson said, “that this man is for some strange reason obsessed with sex and rape and black and Latino men.”

This week, when confronted again with just how wrong he was about the Central Park Five, Trump not only refused to acknowledge widely reported and well-known facts or the court’s official actions in the case. He did not simply refuse to apologize: He described the men as guilty, and then demonstrated, once again, that he is a master at the dark art of using long-standing racial fears, stereotypes and anxieties to advance his personal and political goals.

He used the Central Park Five to differentiate himself from his political opponent. He stoked support for solutions inconsistent with the law. And he refused to admit any error.

<snip>   Wise — who served the longest term of all the wrongfully convicted teens and eventually crossed paths with the real Central Park rapist in prison, setting off a chain of events that got the convictions tossed out — said the content of Trump’s campaign is really a continuation of those 1989 ads.

central-park-five

THE WASHINGTON POST also interviewed Yusef Saleem 12 Oct 2016

At the time, our families tried to shield us from what was going on in the media, but we still found out about Trump’s ads. My initial thought was, “Who is this guy?” I was terrified that I might be executed for a crime I didn’t commit.

Another man, Matias Reyes, eventually confessed to the rape and was definitively linked to the crime through DNA. Because of this, we were exonerated in 2002. New York City paid us $41 million in 2014 for our false imprisonment. (As is customary in such settlements, the city did not admit liability.)

Trump has never apologized for calling for our deaths. In fact, he’s somehow still convinced that we belong in prison. When the Republican nominee was recently asked about the Central Park Five, he said, “They admitted they were guilty.” In a statement to CNN, Trump wrote: “The police doing the original investigation say they were guilty.  [= This applies to Knox – confession – and Sollecito!~ KG] The fact that that case was settled with so much evidence against them is outrageous. And the woman, so badly injured, will never be the same.” (Meili, for her part, told CNN in 2003: “I guess there are lots of theories out there, but I just don’t know. . . . I’ve had to come to peace with it by saying: ‘You know what? I’m just not going to know.’ 

It’s further proof of Trump’s bias, racism and inability to admit that he’s wrong.
When I heard Trump’s latest proclamation, it was the worst feeling in the world. I couldn’t breathe. <snip>

I realize, too, that I’m not the only victim. Trump has smeared dozens of people, with no regard for the truth.

Should politicians intervene in live murder trials?

Trump’s intervention in the Central Park Five case illustrates how imprudent it is for a politician to attempt to intervene in legal cases.  He can have little idea of the evidence presented before the courts.  Trump’s gung-ho White Knight charge-to-the-rescue of a fellow German-American – and backed by physical funding – is based on irrationality, emotion and jingoism, “the last refuge of a scoundrel”.  How dangerous and meddlesome for Cantwell to demand a defendant be released regardless of the facts of the case.

No, Knox doesn’t stand by Trump, but it’s thanks to the likes of him she is free.

I am the Lizard King
I can do anything
I can make the earth stop in its tracks
I made the blue cars go away 

~ Jim Morrison

 

 


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