Amanda Knox has announced she will work on behalf of the wrongly convicted after being cleared of Meredith Kercher’s murder in Italy.
In a letter published by The Seattle Times on April 3, Amanda Knox writes that the kindness of friends, family and strangers has sustained her in the seven-plus years since she was arrested in Meredith Kercher’s death of in Perugia.
She says she knows she must give back.
Amanda Knox also says she is lucky she had the backing of lawyers, DNA experts and former FBI investigators who saw the injustice in her case. She says countless other wrongfully convicted people lack that support, and she wants to work to give them a voice.
Italy’s highest court exonerated Amanda Knox and her former Italian boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito on March 27.
Amanda Knox’s ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito has said being acquitted of the murder of British student Meredith Kercher by Italy’s highest court was like “being born again”.
Speaking for the first time since a final ruling exonerated him and Amanda Knox, Raffaele Sollecito said he had been “branded a killer”.
Meredith Kercher, 21, was stabbed to death in 2008 in the Perugia flat she shared with Seattle native Amanda Knox.
Raffaele Sollecito spent four years in prison in Italy after being convicted in 2009.
He was freed along with Amanda Knox in 2011 after the convictions were overturned and Knox returned to the US. Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were found guilty again by another court in 2014.
Italy’s Court of Appeal ruling on March 27 will be the last in the case and so brings to a close a seven-and-a-half-year ordeal for Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito.
Speaking at a news conference in Rome, Raffaele Sollecito described the years since his arrest as a “dreadful kind of pain without an end”.
“It is time I will never be able to recoup. My mind and my soul will be marked for life, and the wound will never stop bleeding, it will never heal.”
He said he was informed of the decision over the phone late on Friday night, by his sister.
“The most beautiful moment without a doubt was the one that put an end to the nightmare, the call from my sister after the reading of the sentence and the total acquittal from the High Court,” Raffaele Sollecito said.
He added that his relationship with Amanda Knox had been distorted by the press, describing it as “simply affection between two young adolescents”.
“Neither of us could have envisaged this absurd and never-ending story.”
Both Rafafele Sollecito and Amanda Knox always denied being involved in the crime, with the American claiming that an early confession was obtained under duress.
Asked about the victim, Raffaele Sollecito said he “hardly knew” Meredith Kercher.
“I am very sorry that Meredith’s family is disappointed about this verdict. The verdict reflects the truth. It reflects what really happened. I have nothing to do with this crime. I hardly knew Meredith. I just said hello to her a few times and I had no reason to hate her or to be a part of this heinous crime.”
Arline Kercher, Meredith’s mother, said she was “shocked” by the decision.
Amanda Knox said she was “full of joy” after being acquitted.
The reasoning behind the acquittal will be made public in 90 days.
Rudy Guede, from the Ivory Coast, was convicted of Meredith Kercher’s murder in 2008 and is serving a 16-year prison sentence in Italy.
Raffaele Sollecito, Amanda Knox’s former Italian boyfriend, said Tuesday that she provided alibis for him that he will use to try to persuade Italy’s court of last resort to dismiss his conviction for the murder of her British roommate Meredith Kercher.
Raffaele Sollecito hopes the Court of Cassation will rule he deserves yet another trial and throw out the 25-year sentence he received in January from a Florence appeals court, which convicted both him and Amanda Knox for the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher, 21.
His lawyers will stress apparent contradictions in the Florence court’s 337-page verdict explanation.
That court signaled it believed a memo Amanda Knox wrote, while being held for questioning, in which she indicates Raffaele Sollecito had no role in the murder.
“She herself lets me off the hook and gives me an alibi,” Raffaele Sollecito, 30, said.
Amanda Knox wrote a memo while being held for questioning in which she indicates Raffaele Sollecito had no role in Meredith Kercher’s murder (photo Reuters/NBC)
He noted the court accepted findings that an Amanda Knox text message, shortly before the murder, to the owner of a Perugia pub where she worked, had been sent while outside Raffaele Sollecito’s house.
Yet he insisted he wasn’t trying to pin the murder on Amanda Knox.
Flanked by his lawyers in Rome, Raffaele Sollecito stressed what he described as his steadfast belief in the innocence of Amanda Knox, whom he had been dating for barely a week when Meredith Kercher was slain in Perugia, Italy.
“I want to make clear that I and all the people around me, including my family, have always believed, and we still believe today, in the innocence of Amanda Marie Knox.”
The Florence court sentenced Amanda Knox to 28 ½ years in prison.
Amanda Knox, 26, who has repeatedly proclaimed her innocence, has been in America since an earlier court ruling, in 2011, acquitted both her and Raffaele Sollecito.
Most probably Italy will ask the US to extradite Amanda Knox and the decision will probably come down to Secretary of State John Kerry.
According to legal experts, it would be difficult for John Kerry to refuse the request.
Amanda Knox, who was convicted for a second time by an Italian court on Thursday in the 2007 murder of her roommate, vowed to “fight this until the very end”. And Italy would probably wait until the appeals process plays out before asking the US to expel her.
Italy and the US have an extradition treaty, and unless American authorities find clear evidence of a miscarriage of justice, legal experts say, it would be difficult for the US to say no.
Amanda Knox, 26, an American citizen, was convicted by an Italian court in 2009 in the murder of Meredith Kercher, a British student who was found dead in a pool of blood in the apartment she shared with Knox.
An appeals court in Italy threw out the conviction in 2011 after independent experts said DNA evidence had been contaminated by the police.
Amanda Knox, who had spent four years in prison, returned to the US.
Amanda Knox was convicted by an Italian court in 2009 in the murder of Meredith Kercher
The highest court in Italy later dismissed the acquittal because of “contradictions and inconsistencies”.
Then, on Thursday, an Italian court convicted Amanda Knox again and sentenced her to 28 years and six months behind bars.
Meredith Kercher’s family is pushing for Amanda Knox to be returned to Italy. Her brother, Lyle, told reporters that it would be “strange” and would set “a difficult precedent” if she were not handed over.
Marie Harf, a State Department spokeswoman, said Friday that the department has followed the case closely, but she declined to address the prospect of extradition for Amanda Knox.
“The case is still working through the Italian legal system, so we don’t want to get ahead of that process,” she said.
An extradition request would go first to the US State Department. It would review whether a treaty exists (it has since 1984), whether the crime is an extraditable offense (murder qualifies), and whether there are “any potential foreign policy problems”.
If the State Department decided that the request was proper, it would go to the Justice Department, which would check to see whether the request established probable cause that the American committed the crime – a relatively low bar to clear.
If the request cleared that hurdle, it would go to a federal judge.
If a judge failed to intervene, the extradition request would go back to the State Department and John Kerry.
Some legal analysts have said that Amanda Knox could cloak herself in the Fifth Amendment’s protection against double jeopardy, being tried again for a crime after an acquittal. However, that protection wouldn’t apply to Amanda Knox.
Because extradition requests mix law and diplomacy, there are cases in which a country looks at the facts and simply declines to turn someone over.
Amanda Knox was the focus of intense media scrutiny from the start of the highly publicized Meredith Kercher’s murder trial in 2009.
Amanda Marie Knox, born on July 9, 1987, was convicted of the murder of Meredith Kercher in Perugia, Italy, in 2009. She served four years of a 26-year sentence before the murder conviction was overturned on October 3, 2011.
However, on March 26, 2013, Amanda Knox’s acquittal was overturned by the Italian Supreme Court, sending the case back to the lower court for reconsideration.
Raffaele Sollecito, Amanda Knox’s boyfriend at the time of the murder, was also found guilty of the murder but had his conviction overturned by an appeal.
Amanda Knox, now 26, whose pretty face maintained its carefree smile throughout her trial, was the ideal female suspect for an Italian murder – “the face of an angel – but the eyes of a killer,”.
From the images of her kissing her co-accused and erstwhile boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito, to her cartwheels in the police station, Amanda Knox’s seemingly innocent insouciance contrasted gratingly with the gory crime and general preconceptions of what a murderer should look like.
One lawyer was reported as accusing Knox of being “dirty inside and out” and described her as “half Maria Goretti and half demon”.
The lawyer added: “Who is the real Amanda Knox? Is it the one we see before us here, simple water and soap, the angelic St Maria Goretti?”
“Or is she really a she-devil, a diabolical person focused on sex, drugs and alcohol, living life to the extreme and borderline – is this the Amanda Knox of 1 November 2007?”
Maria Goretti was a teenager made a saint by the Roman Catholic Church after she was murdered during an attempted rape.
As the trial unfolded the two Amanda Knox vied for acceptance: the hapless student championed by her family and defense lawyers; and the manipulative hedonist described by the prosecution.
And despite her plea in court – “I’m afraid of having the mask of a murderer forced on to my skin” – the latter always seemed to gain the upper hand.
Amanda Knox was the focus of intense media scrutiny from the start of the highly publicized Meredith Kercher’s murder trial in 2009
Details soon began emerging of Amanda Knox’s private life – her “Foxy Knoxy” nickname, the drug-taking and claims she slept with several men after she arrived in Italy.
In letters from his jail cell, co-defendant Raffaele Sollecito wrote: “The Amanda I know… lives a carefree life.”
“Her only thought is the pursuit of pleasure,” he wrote to his father.
“But, even the thought that she could be a killer is impossible for me.”
Reporters descended on Amanda Knox’s home city of Seattle in search of more details of her private life.
They discovered that the University of Washington student had been fined in 2007 for her role in a drunken party that police were called to.
A picture began to be painted of a “party girl” who abused drink and drugs and had an active s** life.
Tabloid interest intensified after it emerged that Amanda Knox had written a short story on a social networking site about a man who drugs and rapes a young girl.
In it, one character remarks: “A thing you have to know about chicks is that they don’t know what they want.”
This was not the daughter known to Amanda Knox’s family – who term themselves “typically American”.
They helped fund their daughter’s year in Italy in order to further her Italian, German and creative writing studies.
And apart from the story on the social networking site, Amanda Knox’s page also portrays a very different young woman.
On it, she describes herself as a non-drinker and non-smoker. Her favorite pursuits include yoga and “backpacking long distances with people I know”.
Among her favorite films are Shrek and The Full Monty and she likes listening to The Beatles and reading Harry Potter books.
It was partly a desire to emphasize this aspect of their daughter’s character, and counter what they term her “misrepresentation”, that led Amanda Knox’s supporters in Seattle to set up a tribute website.
On it, family and friends write about the “joiner” who excelled at sports and school plays; a “smart, fun, affectionate and loyal” girl who bought sandwiches for homeless people and nursed sick friends.
They had been optimistic that she would be freed by the Italian courts.
According to alleged leaks of her prison diary, Amanda Knox was similarly determined to maintain her innocence – and may have been preparing to blame her ex-boyfriend.
She reportedly wrote: “I think it is possible Raffaele went to Meredith’s house, raped her, then killed her and then when he got home, while I was sleeping, he pressed my fingerprints on the knife.”
But neither of their cases were helped by CCTV evidence that found its way into the Italian press, reportedly showing Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito buying underwear together two days after Meredith Kercher’s death.
The case was media gold from the start: a pretty young victim, brutally murdered in mysterious circumstances, whose murderers were both wealthy and attractive.
Amanda Knox said on Good Morning America she will fight the reinstated guilty verdict against her in the 2007 murder of British roommate Meredith Kercher in Italy.
She also vowed to “never go willingly” to face her fate in Italy’s judicial system.
“I’m going to fight this to the very end,” Amanda Knox said in an interview with Robin Roberts on ABC’s GMA.
Amanda Knox, 26, said she has written a letter to the family of Meredith Kercher expressing sympathy for the legal ordeal that continues more than six years after she was killed.
“I want them to know I understand this is incredibly difficult. They also have been on this never-ending thing. When the case has been messed up so much, a verdict is no longer a consolation for them,” Amanda Knox said during Friday’s interview.
“And just the very fact that they don’t know what happened is horrible,” she said.
Amanda Knox said on Good Morning America she will fight the reinstated guilty verdict against her
“They deserve respect and the consolation of some kind of acknowledgement,” Amanda Knox said.
“I really wish them the best.”
Meredith Kercher’s sister Stephanie and brother Lyle were in the courtroom in Florence for Thursday’s verdict.
Amanda Knox’s former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, has been prohibited from leaving Italy while the case continues.
“I don’t know what I would do if they imprisoned him. It’s maddening,” Amanda Knox told GMA.
And she is not ready for the possibility she could be extradited to Italy to serve a 28-year prison sentence.
“This really, it hit me like a train. I didn’t expect this to happen. I really expected so much better from the Italian system. They found me innocent before; how could they say beyond a reasonable doubt?” Amanda Knox told GMA.
During the trial, Amanda Knox remained in Seattle, where she is a student at the University of Washington.
The court reinstated a guilty verdict first handed down against Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito in 2009. The verdict was overturned in 2011, but Italy’s supreme court vacated that decision and sent the case back for the third trial in Florence.
“I just really hope that people try to understand that (when you have) overzealous prosecutors and when you have a biased investigation and coercive interrogation these things happen. And I’m not crazy,” Amanda Knox told GMA.
Members of Meredith Kercher’s family have said they “are still on a journey to the truth” and may never know what happened to her.
It comes after guilty verdicts were reinstated against Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito for Meredith Kercher murder in 2007.
An Italian court sentenced Amanda Knox to 28 years and six months, and Raffaele Sollecito to 25 years, on Thursday, with their lawyers saying they would appeal.
Amanda Knox, 26, remains in the US and Meredith Kercher’s family called for her to be extradited.
Reports suggest her Italian ex-boyfriend Raffele Sollecito is being held by police after he was found in Udine, near the Slovenian and Austrian borders.
Meredith Kercher, 21, from Coulsdon in south London, was stabbed to death in the flat she shared with Amanda Knox in the college city of Perugia.
Members of Meredith Kercher’s family have said they “are still on a journey to the truth” and may never know what happened to her
Her sister, Stephanie, told a press conference in Florence on Friday: “I think we are still on a journey for the truth and it may be the fact that we don’t ever really know what happened that night, which is obviously something we’ll have to come to terms with.”
She added: “We hope that we are nearer the end so that we can just start to remember Meredith for who she was and draw a line under it, as it were.”
Meredith Kercher’s brother, Lyle, said he believed extradition would be appropriate “if someone has been found guilty and convicted of a murder, and if an extradition law exists between those two countries”.
Amanda Knox has said she will only be extradited to Italy from the US “kicking and screaming”.
In a statement after the case concluded, she said she was “frightened and saddened by this unjust verdict”.
Raffaele Sollecito’s lawyer, Luca Maori, said his client had heard the verdict on TV and looked “annihilated”.
He had earlier been at the Florence court, which imposed a travel ban on the 29-year-old and ordered that his passport be revoked.
The court noted that there was a “real and actual the danger that Raffaele Sollecito could escape Italian justice” – but he is free to move in Italy until the verdict is confirmed.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were also ordered to pay damages to Meredith Kercher’s family as part of the ruling.
The Kercher family’s lawyer, Francesco Maresca, called the verdict “justice for Meredith and the family”.
Raffaele Sollecito, Amanda Knox’s Italian ex-boyfriend, has been stopped by police near the Austrian border following the reinstatement of his guilty verdict for the murder of Briton Meredith Kercher in 2007.
Raffaele Sollecito was stopped between Udine and Tarvisio, near the Slovenia and Austria borders, Italy’s Rai News said.
He was given 25 years and American ex-girlfriend Amanda Knox 28 years and six months in Thursday’s ruling.
The Kercher family lawyer said that justice had been done.
Raffaele Sollecito has been stopped by police near the Austrian border following the reinstatement of his guilty verdict for the murder of Meredith Kercher
A travel ban was part of the verdict handed down on Raffaele Sollecito.
He had been in court earlier in the day on Thursday but was not there for the ruling.
Raffaele Sollecito’s lawyer, Luca Maori, said his client had heard the verdict on TV and looked “annihilated”.
Lawyers for both Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito have said they will appeal to the supreme Court of Cassation.
Amanda Knox said today that she is “frightened and saddened” after being re-convicted in the murder of her roommate Meredith Kercher when they were students in Italy in 2007.
A panel of judges and jurors set a sentence of 28 years and six months for Amanda Knox, who returned to the US after an earlier conviction was reversed.
The jury also convicted her Italian ex-boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, sentencing him to 25 years in jail and banned him from traveling.
“I am frightened and saddened by this unjust verdict,” Amanda Knox, 26, said in a written statement from her home in Seattle, where she returned after spending four years in prison.
“Having been found innocent before, I expected better from the Italian justice system.”
Now it’s unclear what will happen to Amanda Knox, who is certain to appeal – a process that could take a year or longer. Even if the high court confirms the new conviction, Italy still would have to seek her extradition.
Amanda Knox said today that she is “frightened and saddened” after being re-convicted in the murder of her roommate Meredith Kercher
Amanda Knox has vowed not to return.
Raffaele Sollecito’s lawyers said they were stunned by the latest twist in a whiplash-inducing case that has made headlines on both sides of the Atlantic for six years.
“There isn’t a shred of proof,” attorney Luca Maori said.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were arrested after British student Meredith Kercher was found dead in their apartment in the university town of Perugia.
In 2011, an appeals court reheard the case and acquitted Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito after independent experts said crucial DNA evidence had been contaminated by police.
But in March, Italy’s highest court dismissed that acquittal – slamming the lower court for “contradictions and inconsistencies” in its decision – and ordered a new trial.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito say that only one person is responsible for Kercher’s death: small-time drug dealer Rudy Hermann Guede. The Ivory Coast-born man is serving 16 years in jail, but a court found that he did not commit the crime alone.
The defense and prosecution in Amanda Knox’s third trial were both making their final rebuttals on Monday before the court begins deliberations on January 30.
Prosecutor Alessandro Crini urged the court on Monday to take steps to make sure that Amanda Knox and her former Italian boyfriend Raffaele Sollecitp would serve their sentences, if they are convicted of murdering British student Meredith Kercher.
The prosecutor preceded his request by noting that Amanda Knox has remained in the US for this trial, while co-defendant Raffaele Sollecito has traveled abroad during it.
A verdict is expected later that on January 30.
Alessandro Crini has requested guilty verdicts and jail sentences of 26 years for both defendants, and that the court increase to four years Amanda Knox’s three-year sentence for a slander conviction, which has been upheld.
In the case of Raffaele Sollecito, who told reporters Monday that he intends to remain in Italy for the verdict, the precautionary measures could include immediate arrest, house arrest or the confiscation of his passport.
Amanda Knox is being tried in absentia
The court’s reach in Amanda Knox’s case is limited by her presence in the US, where she returned a free woman after the 2009 guilty verdicts against her and Raffaele Sollecito were thrown out by a Perugia appeals court in 2011. Italy’s highest court ordered a second appellate trial after blasting the acquittal.
Amanda Knox’s lawyer, Carlo Dalla Vedova, said during a break that any request for extradition could be made only after a possible guilty verdict is confirmed by Italy’s highest court – a process that can a year or more.
For the moment, Amanda Knox is being tried in absentia, a status that formally is not prejudicial in her regard. She would become a fugitive should she fail to return to serve a sentence should any guilty verdict in this trial be upheld on appeal by Italy’s top criminal court.
Raffaele Sollecito’s father, Francesco Sollecito, said his son has no intention of fleeing justice.
“The fact that Raffaele has no intention of escaping the trial is evident by his presence” in the courtroom, Francesco Sollecito said. He said his son has been legitimately looking for jobs abroad, having explained in court that prospective employers in Italy are put off by the notoriety surrounding the case.
“He is looking around, because he hopes this story ends soon.”
A third person, Ivory Coast-born Rudy Hermann Guede, is serving a 16-year sentence for the murder. His conviction specified that he did not carrying out the murder alone.
Amanda Knox is prepared to become “a fugitive” from justice if an Italian court upholds her original conviction for the murder of British student Meredith Kercher.
One of the last hearings in Amanda Knox’s retrial was held Thursday in Florence.
Amanda Knox, 26, confirmed from her home town of Seattle, where she is studying at Washington University, that she would fight any extradition request from Italy if the appeals court in Florence finds her guilty of the murder and assault of Meredith Kercher in Perugia in 2007.
Italy could apply for her to be extradited but her lawyers in the US are expected to resist that on the basis of double jeopardy – the principle that a defendant cannot be tried twice for the same crime.
Amanda Knox is prepared to become “a fugitive” from justice if an Italian court upholds her original conviction
The appeals court is expected to hand down its verdict on Jan. 30 after hearing the case since September.
Asked what she would do if the court overturned her 2011 acquittal for the murder of the Leeds University student, Amanda Knox said: “In that case I will be … how does one say … a fugitive.”
Amanda Knox told Italian newspaper La Repubblica that she remained optimistic the court would find her and her ex-boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, 29, not guilty.
Prosecutors have asked for Amanda Knox to be sent to jail for 30 years – four years more than her original conviction in 2009.
Raffaele Sollecito, who was convicted and later cleared of killing British student Meredith Kercher in Perugia in 2007, has appeared in court in Florence, Italy.
The Italian is due to make a statement over the death of Amanda Knox’s room-mate Meredith Kercher.
Raffaele Sollecito and his then-girlfriend, Amanda Knox, were convicted in 2009 of murder but acquitted on appeal in 2011.
However, in March Italy’s highest court overturned the acquittals, and ordered a new appeal.
Amanda Knox is now in the US and is not expected to attend court.
“He has come to show that he is not running away,” Raffaele Sollecito’s lawyer, Luca Maori, told reporters before the start of the hearing.
The new appeal was ordered after the prosecution took the case to the Supreme Court.
Raffaele Sollecito is due to make a statement over the death of Amanda Knox’s room-mate Meredith Kercher
The court strongly criticized the way the appeals court had dismissed important DNA evidence, ordering the whole process to begin all over again.
One of the key pieces of forensic evidence that helped to convict the pair in the first place was a kitchen knife found in Raffaele Sollecito’s kitchen, which was said to have Meredith Kercher’s DNA on the blade.
But the DNA sample was tiny, and the appeal judge thought the evidence was unreliable, so he rejected a forensic scientist’s suggestion to have it tested again.
Tuesday’s hearing will focus on a minute trace of DNA found on the murder weapon but not previously tested.
Meredith Kerceher’s family was not in court. But their lawyer, Francesco Maresca, said the evidence was clear for all to see.
“I think that this court has all the elements to take its decision. Another court has determined why that knife was in Knox’s hands,” said Francesco Maresca.
Both Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox spent four years in prison before their acquittal, and have always insisted they are innocent.
Another man – Rudy Guede from Ivory Coast – was convicted in a separate trial and sentenced to 16 years for the killing.
Police experts in Italy found Amanda Knox’s DNA, not the victim’s, on the alleged murder weapon–a butcher knife she supposedly used to kill British roommate Meredith Kercher to death in 2007.
Perugia police took the knife from the kitchen of Raffaele Sollecito, Amanda Knox’s then boyfriend, and she’d cooked with it. Thus her DNA is not incriminating–unless the knife shows traces of the victim, in blood. The fact that Amanda Knox’s DNA showed up, not Meredith Kercher’s, increases her acquittal odds in this third murder trial, set to end November 26 in Florence, Italy.
Independent experts did not find Meredith Kercher’s DNA on the kitchen knife in the last trial either
Independent experts did not find Meredith Kercher’s DNA on the kitchen knife in the last trial either.
Conti & Vecchiotti savaged the police lab analysis: “Taking into account that none of the recommendations of the international scientific community relative to the treatment of Low Copy Number (LCN) samples were followed, we do not accept the conclusions regarding the certain attribution of the profile found on trace B (blade of knife) to the victim Meredith Susanna Cara Kercher, since the genetic profile, as obtained, appears unreliable insofar as it is not supported by scientifically validated analysis.”
Amanda Knox has revealed she will not attend a retrial in Italy because she will forever be seen as “the dark lady who decided Meredith had to die”.
Amanda Knox, 26, claims her presence animates the courtroom, detracting from the evidence.
It follows claims by her co-accused and former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito that Italian police tried to bribe him into framing her.
Since overturning a 26-year jail sentence, Amanda Knox has denied any involvement in the 2007 murder of Leeds University student Meredith Kercher, who was found with her throat slashed in their shared flat in Perugia.
Now living in Seattle, she refuses to answer calls to revisit the evidence at a court Florence.
Amanda Knox told the New York Post nobody in the Perugia court cared about what really happened to Meredith Kercher.
Amanda Knox has revealed she will not attend a retrial in Italy because she will forever be seen as the dark lady who decided Meredith had to die
Branding the court room a “circus”, Amanda Knox claims everybody was more concerned about what she was wearing, how she did her hair or whether she smiled at her parents than the legal proceedings.
In an interview with the Sun on Sunday, Amanda Knox said: “The fact is that my presence has always been a distraction in the courtroom.
“Every single movement I made, every gesture, every facial expression, was the focus of scrutiny and distracted from the evidence in the case.”
Amanda Knox told the paper she had been portrayed during the first trial as “the dark lady…who decided Meredith was better than me and had to die”.
“Projecting that image justifies in their minds that I would be capable of committing a crime so heinous as this and therefore validates the guilty verdict in the first trial,” she said.
But, she added, finance was also a problem: “If it were possible to go to the court and not have to deal with the issues of being afraid of being thrown back in prison again for an arbitrary reason, or for being able to financially afford it, absolutely I would want to be there.”
Italy’s highest criminal court, the Court of Cassation, ruled in March that an appeal court in Florence must re-hear the case against Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito for the murder of 21-year-old Meredith Kercher.
Raffaele Sollecito is due to face a retrial on September 30. But Amanda Knox’s lawyer revealed last month that she will not return to Italy for the new trial.
They were found guilty in December 2009 of murdering Meredith Kercher, with Amanda Knox sentenced to 26 years in prison and Raffaele Sollecito 25.
But, after an 11-month appeal in a Perugia court, both convictions were thrown out in October 2011.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito have consistently protested their innocence and claim they were not even in the apartment on the night Meredith Kercher died.
Raffaele Sollecito has claimed Italian police tried to bribe him into framing ex-girlfriend Amanda Knox for the murder of British student Meredith Kercher – and revealed his fears “out of control” Knox would do the same to him.
Amanda Knox’s former boyfriend says “sneaky” officers instigated a string of approaches from a prison guard, other inmates and even his family as he and his American lover were awaiting trial for 21-year-old Meredith Kercher’s murder in Perugia, Italy.
Raffaele Sollecito, 29, said he refused to point the finger of blame at Amanda Knox to save his own skin because he was “really fond of her”.
Yet he admits he was terrified Amanda Knox, who he had been dating for just a week before the 2007 killing, would do a deal to stitch him up because she was “out of control”.
Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox, 26, were convicted of Meredith Kercher’s murder in 2009 then cleared on appeal two years later.
But Italy’s highest court later threw out the acquittals and the pair faces a new trial, beginning later this month.
Raffaele Sollecito claimed detectives told him he would be released immediately if he distanced himself from Amanda Knox, saying he should pretend he couldn’t remember anything or that he was sleeping in order for the prosecution to catch her.
He told the Daily Mirror: “They did not persuade me. It was the most sneaky situation. I couldn’t invent anything.”
But he still “feared Amanda” and added: “I knew her for a short time, a week, and in reality I did not really know this woman. I was scared because she was out of control at the police station. She had been making crazy statements and everything was just wrong.
“I thought she could make a deal to blame me. I was scared of that.”
Amanda Knox was jailed for 26 years and Raffaele Sollecito for 25 following the trial in 2009.
Raffaele Sollecito said the first “deal” was when he was in solitary confinement and came about when he his father tried to speak to the prosecution and was told to pass on the message his son should keep his distance from Amanda Knox.
Other family members urged Raffaele Sollecito to take the deal and free himself, but he refused to be persuaded and wrote a letter to his nearest and dearest vowing to stand by Amanda Knox.
Raffaele Sollecito claimed police then began trying to get him to turn against Amanda Knox and that, unless he distanced himself from the American, he would spend the rest of his life in prison.
The Italian claims this message was passed to his family in no uncertain terms.
Raffaele Sollecito has claimed Italian police tried to bribe him into framing Amanda Knox for the murder of Meredith Kercher
His father was allegedly approached by a Perugia lawyer offering a similar deal.
Meredith Kercher’s grieving family, from Coulsdon, Surrey, were devastated when Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were freed on appeal but vowed to keep Meredith’s memory alive.
They have kept out of the public eye and refused to read the books that Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito wrote about their “ordeal”.
But in March the family welcomed news of the retrial and hoped they would finally get answers.
No murder weapon was ever found, DNA tests were faulty and prosecutors provided no motive for murder.
In a series of confused interviews after their arrest Amanda Knox initially claimed to have witnessed the murder and named a local bar owner as the killer.
She later withdrew the statement, insisting it had been made under duress, and said she had been at Raffaele Sollecito’s student apartment throughout the night – which he confirmed.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito met at a classical music concert and became lovers within hours. Meredith Kercher was murdered just a week later.
Raffaele Sollecito said the pair “were like teenagers in a fantasy romance” but then became friends bonded by the tragedy.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were photographed being reunited in New York earlier this year – but he insists there is no romance.
Raffaele Sollecito is often asked if he wished he had never met Amanda Knox. He said: “No, I don’t think like that. I don’t blame her, it is not her fault this nightmare. It is others.”
And he claimed his own life is “in limbo”, and that he is without a home. He fears he is a target in Italy for those who still believe he and Amanda Knox were involved and worries police will try to seek revenge by planting drugs in his car.
He has tried to settle in Lugano, Switzerland, and set up a computer software firm – but was kicked out by the Swiss authorities because he failed to disclose details of the murder charges.
Raffaele Sollecito then went to stay with relatives in the US and even got marriage proposals from female murder trial “groupies”.
He has now moved to a secret location in the Caribbean, where he is currently trying to establish a business.
Amanda Knox’s lawyers have insisted she will not be at the retrial in Florence and Raffaele Sollecito said he will wait until after the first of eight scheduled hearings to see “which way the court is going”.
Raffaele Sollecito feels victimized and slammed the police handling of the case, saying everything about the investigation was handled “wrong” and that officers were “incompetent” and “fools”.
Despite his own grievances, Raffaele Sollecito insists he hasn’t forgotten the pain of Meredith Kercher’s family, saying he “can’t imagine their suffering”.
But he urged them to read the case documents and ask questions about what really happened instead of sticking by the “theory” of what happened.
“If you accept only the prosecution case you will never find what is right and what really happened,” he added.