Category: Hoaxes against Italy

Friday, December 18, 2015

Knox Calunnia Trial #2: Judge Receives Arguments Of Prosecution And Knox; Verdict In New Year

Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



Court in session 7 September in Florence with Knox a no-show

1. Latest Development

We are informed that the final arguments to the judge by both sides have been submitted in writing.

We will summarise and/or fully translate them, hopefully next week. Next step is the verdict from Judge Boninsegna, which may come early in the New Year.

Below is a reposting of the background to this unusual case, and Machiavelli’s reports from the court on 7 September.

Such trials are very rare. Usually it is only organized crime figures that in the course of a trial impugn police and prosecutors who in Italy are much respected. Defendants rarely even get on the stand, and if they do so, they invariably follow the advice of defence counsel to not dig themselves in any deeper. 

In contrast, Knox pretty well went haywire. NOBODY in Italy has ever believed her. Not her own lawyers, nor multiple hearings & trial judges, or the skeptical media, or the watching population, or Hellmann & Zanetti, or even Marasca & Bruno…  Not even Curt Knox! He failed to turn up to give scheduled defense testimony that could have helped Amanda Knox last September.

Gee, thanks, Curt….

And she has left her own lawyers handicapped, as they had publicly counseled Knox to stop escalating her claims about illegal coercion at her “interrogation” on 5-6 November 2007.

Their filing probably needs to be especially careful to avoid their own liability. 

2. Background To Calunnia Trial

This trial focuses on the claims of Amanda Knox at trial in 2009. Charges for malicious claims in her book will fall to another court, probably also in Florence. Oggi is already on trial for republishing some of them.

There seems no parallel in US or UK legal history to this - to a defendant testifying prolifically for two days to crimes by investigators, in spite of even more days of prior testimony which all pointed the other way.

Seemingly under strong pressure from her own family Knox willingly took a huge legal risk which her own lawyers had warned her about again and again, sometimes publicly, over nearly two years.

They never ever lodged even one complaint. Nor did the US Embassy in Rome, which monitored all sessions in court, and often checked her out (as did Italian MP Rocco Girlanda) in prison at Capanne.

The Massei court and the watching audience in Italy (read here and here) bought none of it. Knox still served three years for framing Patrick. Not even Judge Hellmann bought into her claims. Certainly not the Supreme Court.

The current trial in Florence was preceded by an investigation by Florence prosecutors, who bring the charges and argue them because Knox impugned officers of the justice system in their official roles. 

Prior to today the prosecutors’ investigation report had only been released to Knox’s defense. So we don’t yet know if the charges extend beyond Knox’s claims of having been abused into a false “confession” on 5-6 November 2007.

Post #1 of our ongoing Interrogation Hoax series points toward what investigators testified to at trial.

Four months later Knox contradicted them at length as summarised in our two posts here and here: “The Amanda Knox Calunnia Trial In Florence: What It Is All About”

3. Machiavelli Reports From Trial 7 September

1. Tweets from the Florence court:

16. Zugarini was present throughout the interrogation and described when #amandaknox started to cry, remembered her peculiar hand-ear gestures.

15. Napoleoni testified #amandaknox was brought a chamomille when she started crying at 01:45, the interrogation was immediately stopped.

14. Napoleoni and Zugarini said they “cuddled” Knox because she was a 20-year old girl.

13. Both Mignini and Zugarini described having had impression that #amandaknox was feeling “relieved of a burden” after accusing Lumumba.

12. Mignini said Knox was not clearly a suspect to him by the 05:45 interrogation.

11. Witnesses had inaccurate memory on some details, but were convergent on some peculiar details.

10. Napoleoni said she did not enter interrogation room, she called Rita Ficarra out to talk to her.

9. Zugarini said, as for her knowledge, Knox was not told that Sollecito withdrew her alibi.

8. Zugarini said called interpreter only to ask #amandaknox more precise questions about people in her phone contact list.

7. Zugarini said #amandaknox was able to explain herself in Italian. They called an interpreter to translate what police had to say.

6. Testimony of Mignini was descriptive and framed thing in law. Mostly talked at length explaining alone, prosecutor listened.

5. In today’s hearing, Mignini talked 2 hours, confirmed arrived at 3am, police interview was over, he asked no questions of AK.

4. Napoleoni was precise and synthetic. Zugarini longer and IMO more interesting on many details.

3. Mignini and Judge Boninsegna appeared irritated by Dalla Vedova’s remarks.

2. Long hearing of Mignini at trial against Amanda Knox for calunnia. Napoleoni & Gubbiotti followed, then Zugarini

1. Testimony of some of the investigators accused by Knox and the lead prosecutor Dr Mignini [image above] is being taken in court.

[Reporting from the Florence court sometimes requires a wait to get to a place where mobile phones can connect to the outside.]

2. Emailed report following day (8 September):

No Knox calunnia session required today as last Friday and yesterday both sides completed their witness list.

Amanda Knox and Curt Knox chose not to testify.

Now Judge Boninsegna has ordered each side to prepare their arguments within three months (7 December).

The verdict is likely to arrive in the New Year.

 


Thursday, December 10, 2015

Traitor? How Sollecito Extensively Smeared Italy In English But Of Course Not Italian

Posted by The TJMK Main Posters




1. Overview Of “Sollecito As Traitor” Series

By way for example of his new Italian book, Sollecito is trying hard to make himself liked in Italy.

An uphill task at best. Most Italians, who could follow the case a lot closer than most people outside Italy, know about all of this.

    (1) At his central-police-station interview 5-6 November 2007 and his first Matteini hearing two days later he dumped very heavily on Knox.

    (2) Throughout trial he gave Knox no help with her current alibi (that she was at his place all night) and again and again pulled out the rug from under her.

    (3) After the Hellmann outcome late 2011 Sollecito took off like a rabbit for the US (with his family soon in hot pursuit) and after Knox stiffed him tried very hard to get someone - anyone - to marry him so he could stay.

    (4) Before the Nencini verdict came out in early 2014, a panicked Sollecito took off to the north in a car and got cold feet (or was warned to stop) at the Austrian border and ignominiously came back.

    (5) Before the Fifth Chambers verdict came out in early 2015 a panicked Sollecito took off for Bari rather than remaining at the Supreme Court to find out what the verdict would be.

    What Italians mostly dont know is this. In late 2013 Sollecito’s first book - only in English - came out, and he was soon all over American TV once again sticking it to Knox.

    In the book his self-serving strategy was threefold: (1) Despite the title, point hard to Knox; (2) Point harder to Dr Mignini and the supposedly bungling, mean police; and (3) Point hardest to the official mechanisms, by lying on a grand scale, to make them out to be brutal and highly archaic at best.

    This series will lay out how Sollecito, lying and lying from what he thought would be a safe distance across the Atlantic, tried hard to make Italy look bad in the eyes of the world.

    A lot of posters contributed to the analysis of Sollecito’s 2012 English-language book on which much of the series will be based. Thanks especially to Sara, Kermit, Cardiol MD, and James Raper, who did the most work. 

    1. Sollecito’s First 20 False Claims

    We first posted a version of this analysis in May 2014. These twenty examples of felony claims all appear in the book’s preface which is only seven pages.

    Such claims continue throughout the book at approximately the same rate and they will be examined in future posts. 

    1. That Italian justice authorities took the easy way out

    This is the story of two ordinary people who stumbled upon an extraordinary circumstance, the brutal murder of a British student in Italy. Neither Amanda Knox nor I had anything to do with the crime, but we came perilously close to spending the rest of our lives in prison because the authorities found it easier, and more convenient, to take advantage of our youth and inexperience than to mount a proper investigation.  It’s that simple. And that absurd.

    No advantage was taken of them. The two stood out very sharply from all the others of similar age, and of similar inexperience (whatever that means). They did and said dozens of things in the early days that set them sharply apart.

    They were interrogated quite fairly, the Italian media was not especially hard, Dr Mignini never ever leaked, and they had lawyers and family handy at every turn after they were arrested. They each gave the authorities less than zero help - they tried to lead them off on wild goose chases, for example the false claim AK made against Patrick and dozens of other false claims, and apparently tried to finger yet another north African, Hicham Khiri, in a conversation they clearly knew was being recorded.

    A “proper” investigation was indeed done. Simply read through all the posts on the trial here in the first half of 2009, and the prosecutor’s excellent summations, and you will see what a smooth comprehensive job was done. And the Supreme Court concluded that THREE had to have been involved, from the recreation of the attack and all the wounds on Meredith’s body. Subsequent to Patrick, AK and RS and their lawyers never came within light-years of throwing real suspicion on anyone else.

    2. That the preventive custody was very harsh

    On November 1, 2007, Amanda and I were carefree students at the beginning of a cross-cultural love affair in a beautiful Umbrian hill town. Within days, we were thrown into solitary confinement in a filthy prison, without access to lawyers or loved ones, accused of acts so heinous and disturbing we may never be able to banish them from our thoughts, or our nightmares.

    Raffaele was sent to preventative prison on Tuesday November 6. Capanne Prison was almost brand-new then, and far from crowded. Cells contain TVs and private bathrooms.

    All questioning had been stopped early on 6 November until Sollecito could have a lawyer present. He himself wrote to his father in his “prison diary” on November 7:  “I may see you tomorrow, at least that is what I was told by Tiziano [Tiziano Tedeschi, his lawyer at the time], who I saw today and who defended me before the judge.”

    Mr Tedeschi made no complaint about any delay in the first meeting with his new client. In Italy, a judge must determine within 48 hours whether to hold or release detained suspects. Judge Matteini did so meticulously with Tedeschi present and refused Sollecito’s release.

    3. That the prosecution and Italian media demonized the pair

    In the newspapers and on the nightly news, we were turned into monsters, grotesque distortions of our true selves. It did not matter how thin the evidence was, or how quickly it became apparent that the culprit was someone else entirely. Our guilt was presumed, and everything the prosecution did and fed to the media stemmed from that false premise.

    In the real world, the prosecution fed nothing at all secretly to the media and publicly very little, none of it self-servingly biased. Italian reporting was sporadic and very mild compared to anything one can see said daily about possible perps in the US and UK newspapers and on US TV. Besides, any coverage, which was in part deliberate in the situation as dozens of students were fleeing Perugia, had no influence on anything, neither on the investigation nor the trial.

    The Italian system is set up so media can have less influence than almost any other media on any other justice system in the world. The Micheli and Massei sentencing reports show the judges were not unduly influenced even by the lawyers right in front of them, let alone by mild media reports 1 or 2 years before that.

    4. That four years were wasted showing where the prosecution went wrong.

    By the time we had dismantled the case and demonstrated its breathtaking absurdity [in the annulled Hellmann appeal] we had spent four of what should have been the best years of our lives behind bars.

    “We” meaning the defense lawyers did very little in the annulled Hellmann appeal that they hadn’t flailed uselessly against in the trial. Except of course maybe shopping for an inexperienced and pliable business judge, and for DNA consultants who they could then spoon-feed. Much of the hard evidence they simply kept well away from in the trial and annulled appeal. Such as the extensive evidence in the corridor and bathroom and Filomena’s room, which were all considered parts of the crime scene.

    On the other hand, RS’s claim could well apply to what Dr Galati and Cassation did for the Hellman sentencing report. Dismantled the appeal verdict, and demonstrated its breathtaking absurdity.

    5. That Knox was made a target because timid Italy was scared of her.

    Amanda and I certainly made our share of mistakes. At the beginning we were too trusting, spoke too frivolously and too soon, and remained oblivious to the danger we were courting even after the judicial noose began to tighten. Amanda behaved in ways that were culturally baffling to many Italians and attracted a torrent of gossip and criticism.

    An inaccurate and xenophobic remark originated by the American Nina Burleigh, who was having severe culture shock of her own and surrounded only by other foreigners with similar mindsets. What EXACTLY was so baffling about Knox to the very hip Italians? That Knox was pushy, obnoxious, humorless, rather lazy, rather grubby, and not especially funny or pretty or bright?  That she put off Patrick, Meredith, her other flatmates, the boys downstairs, the customers in the bar, and just about everybody else except for the distasteful druggie loner Sollecito?

    Read this post by the Italian-American Nicki in Milan. To quote from it “As many of us were expecting, Amanda’s testimony has backfired. She came across not as confident but arrogant, not as sweet but testy, not as true but a fake who has memorized a script, an actress who is playing a part but not well enough to fool the public….. Amanda Knox is not on trial because she is American and therefore too “emancipated”....Italians don’t much like Amanda primarily because they perceive her as a manipulative liar, who is suspected of having committed a heinous crime for which there is a whole stack of evidence.”

    6. That Knox and Meredith were really great, great friends.

    We were young and naive, unthinking and a little reckless. Of that much we were guilty.  But what we did not do””and could not have done, as the evidence clearly showed””was murder Meredith Kercher.

    Meredith was Amanda’s friend, a fellow English speaker in the house they shared with two Italian women just outside Perugia’s ancient city walls. She was twenty-one years old, intelligent, and beautiful. She and Amanda knew each other for a little over three weeks, long enough to feel their way into their new surroundings and appreciate each other’s interests and temperaments. I never heard about a single tense moment between them.

    Plenty of other people did know of tensions. Meredith’s family and friends all knew Meredith was finding the noisy dirty lazy loud unfocused Knox and her drugs and one-night-stands hard to take.  Her other flatmates found her hard to take. Her employer Patrick found her hard to take. His customers in the bar found her hard to take.  The Lifetime movie got this strident angle pretty straight.

    Remember, Meredith enrolled for a full academic load at the main university. Knox in sharp contrast took only one undemanding language course - which anyone could walk into - requiring maybe 10 hours of study a week.  They increasingly did less together. In fact after several weeks nobody was lining up to have anything to do with Amanda Knox.

    Seemingly unable to reverse herself, she was headed to being among the least popular of students in Perugia.  It should be recalled that the callous remarks by Amanda Knox about the death of her so-called friend Meredith included “Shit happens”, “She fucking bled to death”, and “‘I want to get on with the rest of my life”.

    7. That an intruder knew about the rent money and so murder ensued.

    Meredith, of course, suffered infinitely worse luck than we did: she came home, alone, on an ordinary Thursday night and had her throat slit by an intruder hoping to steal the household rent money.

    There is zero evidence that this was the case. Knox herself ended up with a similar amount of cash that she has never been able to explain. There is zero possibility that Guede would know that any money was lying around - or not lying around, as it was concealed in Meredith’s drawer.

    And take a look at the many images of the brightly lit house at night. There are several dozen other houses behind it in the dark which any smart burglar would have chosen first.  In 2008 two real break-ins occurred at the house - both were in the dark behind the house, which is by far the easiest place to break in.

    And how many burglars break into an occupied home between 8:00pm and 9:00pm at night? Approximately none. So much for the spurious lone-wolf theory, which Judge Micheli first ruled out even before trial.

    8. That the media got hysterical and portrayed heartless killers.

    But the roles could easily have been reversed. If Meredith’s Italian boyfriend had not gone away for the weekend and if Amanda had not started sleeping over at my house, she””not Meredith””might have been the one found in a pool of blood on her bedroom floor. That reality was quickly lost amid the hysteria of the media coverage. But it continued to hover over both of us””Amanda especially””as we sank into the legal quagmire and struggled in vain to overcome the public image of us as heartless killers.

    There was zero media hysteria. This silly claim was addressed above. Watch the Porta a Porta YouTubes and dozens of other Italian reports and try to find ONE that is not fair and cautious and mature.

    How precisely did the two struggle in vain to overcome their public image? By coming up repeatedly with stories which didnt even tally with others of their own, let alone with one another’s? They never between them made even one helpful statement which actually helped the police.  And even their respective parents strongly suspected or knew of their guilt and were all caught incriminatingly on tape.

    9. That Rudy Guede did it alone; ignore vast evidence that proves not.

    This should not have been a complicated case. The intruder was quickly identified as Rudy Guede, an African immigrant living in Perugia with a history of break-ins and petty crimes. His DNA was found all over Meredith’s room, and footprints made in her blood were found to match his shoes. Everything at the crime scene pointed to a lone assailant, and a single weapon. Guede repeatedly broke into houses by throwing a rock through a window, as happened here, and he had been caught by the authorities in the past with a knife similar to the one that inflicted Meredith’s fatal wounds.

    This is laughable. It has in fact been demonstrated in numerous ways that the attack involved multiple assailants and this was accepted by the Supreme Court.

    Sollecito’s own lawyers never forcefully argued this. They produced two non-credible witnesses in the appeal trial (Alessi and Aviello) to actually prove that Guede had some other accomplices or that several others did it. Also Amanda Knox if anything diverted attention AWAY from Guede as he did in turn from her. He wasn’t quickly identified precisely because Knox had rather credibly fingered Patrick.

    There is no proof Guede was an intruder. The trial court concluded Knox invited him in. Guede had zero proven history of break-ins or petty crimes or drug-dealing, and late in 2008 at his trial Judge Micheli became angry at such claims. Guede had no prior criminal record at all. He had only been back in Perugia for a few weeks, after an extended stay up north.  His DNA was not found “all over” Meredith’s room. A major surprise, in fact, was how few traces of him were found.

    The recreation of the crime scene and the autopsy both pointed AWAY FROM a lone assailant, not toward.  From Meredith’s wounds, it was quite evident that two and perhaps three knives had been used, and not a single weapon. What lone intruder carries or uses two or three knives?  And footprints in blood outside the door matched the feet of both RS and AK. This is why the Supreme Court confirmed Guede’s guilt only “in concorso” (with others).

    10. That the cops could have caught Guede fast, despite Knox’s frame

    Guede did not call the police, as Amanda and I did, or volunteer information, or agree to hours of questioning whenever asked. Rather, he fled to Germany as soon as the investigation began and stayed there until his arrest two and a half weeks later.

    Guede’s apprehension and eventual conviction on murder charges should have been the end of the story. But by the time Guede was identified, the police and the public prosecutor’s office had convinced themselves that the murder was, incredibly, the result of a sexual orgy gone wrong, in which Amanda and I had played leading roles. Their speculations ignited a media firestorm, inspiring sensationalist headlines across the world about the evil lurking behind our seemingly innocent faces.

    The authorities had no shred of evidence to substantiate this story line, only erroneous suppositions and wild imaginings. We had an alibi for the most likely time of death, and none of the initial forensic evidence tied us to the scene of the crime. Nothing in our backgrounds gave any hint of a propensity for violence or criminality. We were both accomplished, hardworking students known to our friends and families for our gentleness and even tempers.

    Four more untrue remarks. All three were convicted of a murder with a sex-crime element and nobody was wrongly “convinced”. Which alibi is Sollecito talking about now? He himself admits in chapter 1 (Love and Death) that they had no “real alibi”. They still have no alibis at all for the second half of the evening, neither of them, when Meredith’s murder indisputably occurred.

    Extensive forensic evidence within days tied them both to the scene. Not a single element of it has been discredited in the eyes of the Massei trial and Nencini appeal court. Not even one. Nothing was falsified.

    Neither of their backgrounds was squeaky clean. Both had long been into illegal drugs, the loner Sollecito had to be watched by his father and teachers, the increasingly disliked Knox had a history of doing and saying crass off-putting things. Both were lagging behind their brighter peers in their studies and Knox was taking a year off.

    11. That the prosecution fed the media a huge number of false claims.

    Yet the authorities stuck to their guns. They fed the media a steady diet of sensationalist stories of how Amanda, the promiscuous American she-devil, and I, her sex-and-drug-addled Italian helpmeet, had tried without success to drag Meredith into our depravity and punished her by plunging an outsize kitchen knife into her neck.

    Complete fiction. Again, in the real world, as the media reporters all confirm, the prosecution fed nothing at all secretly to the media, and publicly very little, none of it self-servingly biased.

    Italian reporting was sporadic and very mild compared to anything one can see daily on possible perps in the US and UK newspapers and on US TV crime shows. There is zero sign this mild coverage mattered to the courts. As the media reporters all confirm, they were fed next to nothing by the police or prosecution on the case,

    But whereas Mr Mignini famously never leaks, the defenses are widely claimed to have leaked throughout like sieves. So did Sollecito’s own family - they leaked an evidence video to Telenorba TV, for which they were considered for trial. Even we at TJMK and PMF received several offers of juicy leaks. Here is one example of where the Knox forces leaked - wrongly in fact - and then nastily slimed the prosecution and defenseless prison staff.

    12. That the authorities had lots and lots and lots of scenarios.

    It might have been funny if the consequences had not been so devastating. Listening to the tortured language of the prosecution””“one can hypothesize that . . . ,” “it is possible that . . . ,” “one can imagine that . . . ,” “this scenario is not incompatible with . . .”””it became clear that the authorities, like the media, were treating our case with the bizarre levity of an after-dinner game of Clue, or an Agatha Christie mystery. Everyone, even the judges in their black robes, had theories they were itching to air.

    Have Sollecito and Gumbel ever before been in any other court in Italy or the UK or the US?  Every judge and/or jury has to arrive at a scenario on lines not unlike this. That is the whole POINT of having courts - to weight the probabilities in what happened in the crime.  The only difference in Italy is that the judges have to think their verdict through for weeks, and then write it all out, and then see it scrutinized by a higher court. This is hardly a requirement to be sneered at.

    Gumble and Sollecito should have studied how US and UK juries arrive at their own scenarios. Very few US and UK lawyers think they do a better job. Ask those who watched the OJ Simpson and Casey Anthony trials and bitterly criticised the outcomes. And Italy has a vastly lower rate of false imprisonment than the US does.

    13. That Italy is a medieval country with a primitive justice system.

    It could have been Colonel Mustard in the drawing room with the revolver; instead it was Amanda and Raffaele in the bedroom with the kitchen knife. How was it conceivable that a democratic country known for its style and beauty and effortless charm””the Italy of the Renaissance and la dolce vita””could allow two young people to be catapulted to international notoriety and convicted of a horrific crime on the basis of nothing at all?

    This is not remotely what happened. There was very far from nothing at all. Convictions in the US and UK regularly result based on evidence 1/10 or 1/100 of that here - sometimes from one single evidence point. Any one or several of maybe 100 evidence points here could have convicted them in a US or UK court.

    Italy gives defendants every possible break, and the justice system is seriously loaded against victims and their families. Read here and here.

    14. That the prosecutors office and media were in a grim embrace.

    The answer has something to do with the grim embrace that developed between the prosecutor’s office and the sensationalist media. Like addicts constantly looking for the next fix, each fed the other’s insatiable appetite for titillation and attention. The casual cruelty of “Foxy Knoxy” and her Italian lover became too good a story line to abandon, even when it became apparent it was overheated and unsustainable. Our suffering was the price to be paid for the world’s continuing entertainment.

    WHAT grim embrace? WHAT addicts? WHAT fix? WHAT insatiable appetite? WHAT titillation and attention? This is clearly defamatory if it can’t be proven, and we can turn up no evidence that any of it is true. It has to be one of the most foolish lies in the entire book, it is so easy to disprove. These who are being accused of crimes here are career police and prosecutors secure in their jobs, and none have the slightest gain to make from false convictions.

    15. That in the justice system speculation and hearsay run rampant

    The meandering complexities of the Italian legal system, where speculation and hearsay are allowed to run rampant and time invariably slows to a maddening trickle, did little to help our cause.

    Total mischaracterization. First note that by comparison with any country in the world THERE IS NOT MUCH CRIME IN ITALY.  There is some minor corruption and still some minor mafia action, but thefts and burglaries and assaults are few and murders even fewer. The main crime if you can call it such is not lining up to pay taxes.  Italy’s murder rate is 1/6 that of the United States and its prison incarceration rate is 1/30 that of the United States, so where IS all this crime about which the claimed speculation and hearsay are running rampant?

    The legal process could have been fully over by the end of 2009 if (1) there was not the entitlement to two automatic appeals; in UK and US terms there was very little to appeal about;  and (2) the Hellmann appeal court had not been fixed to produce a corrupt outcome, as the displaced judge Sergio Matteini Chiari and Cassation and the Council of Magistrates have all made plain.

    And compared to American police and prosecutors, their Italian counterparts are famously taciturn under their unusually firm rules. There is media interest, for sure, as there should be when there are crimes, but that also is comparatively restrained. Watch the various Porta a Porta shows on YouTube and you will see how sedate crime discussion tends to be.

    The Constitution and judicial code set out to achieve the exact opposite of speculation and hearsay affecting justice, and they do so.  Creating this restraint is a primary reason for the judges’ sentencing reports and all the magistrates’ checks of investigations along the way.

    This whole series of dishonest claims about the the Italian system in the preface of the book and in a later chapter have clearly not been read through or okayed by even a single Italian lawyer.

    16. That in Italy proof beyond a reasonable doubt scarcely exists

    For reasons deeply embedded in the country’s history, the concept of proof beyond a reasonable doubt scarcely exists in Italy, and the very notion of undisputed fact is viewed with suspicion, if not outright aversion.

    So Gumbel and Sollecito are historians and legal experts now? It would be nice, wouldn’t it, if either were able to explain the remark. This may be an ignorant swipe at the Napoleonic Code on which the law of a lot of continental Europe is based. Ignored is that Italy carried out its own reforms to the Code in 1990 and more subsequently. Much of that reform, it should be pointed out, was procedural or structural rather than substantive law.

    There are two things wrong with “..the concept of reasonable doubt scarcely exists in Italy.”

    1. It is factually wrong. Italian jurists, the courts, and so on, are well acquainted with the concept as it has been a fundamental aspect of criminal proceedings in Italy as elsewhere for many decades if not centuries.

    2. It suggests that Italians are not intelligent enough to understand the concept anyway. That of course is an insult to Italians.  Actually they are no less intelligent than the rest of us elsewhere who strive to understand it.

    Until the 1990 Reforms the relationship between criminal and civil proceedings in Italy were governed by the principles of unity of jurisdiction and the prevailing status of criminal proceedings. Hence, if the facts were the same then criminal proceedings (to punish the guilty) and civil proceedings (to render liable the guilty for damages) were heard at the same time and still sometimes are, as in the Meredith Kercher case.

    What has changed (relevant to the above quote) is that civil cases can be and are more likely to be heard independently from the related criminal cases and, where not, the standard of proof in civil cases (the preponderance of evidence or, as we usually refer to it, the balance of probabilities) is to be applied to the civil case, and the civil case only, rather than be confused with or overriden by the criminal standard of proof (beyond reasonable doubt).

    Not an easy task, admittedly, to apply different standards to different tasks, based on the same facts, in the same proceedings, but Italian judges are trained to do this because that is their system. No judge would EVER confuse “beyond reasonable doubt” with “the balance of probabilities” when the issue at stake is depriving an individual of his freedom.

    17. That the Italian judiciary has vast, unfettered powers

    Few in Italian society wield as much unfettered power as the robed members of the judiciary, whose independence makes them answerable to nobody but themselves.

    Radically the opposite of the truth. The paranoid claim reads like it came from ex PM Berlusconi fearful of his own conviction or one of his parliamentary lackeys such as Girlanda.

    The checks and balances on judges in the Italian system are enormous, perhaps the toughest checks and balances in the world. Read here and here about them.

    All of the best judges in the world are independent and they all follow a demanding career path, not elected (as ex-Judge Heavey was) under zero criteria, or appointed under the political sway of politicians. We wonder if Gumbel and Sollecito have ever heard of the US Supreme Court? Do those judges answer to anybody? No? How unfettered. 

    18. That the courts are the most reviled institution in Italy.

    Many Italians retain a healthy skepticism about the reliability of their procedures and rulings. The courts””tainted by politics, clubbishness, pomposity, and excruciating delays””are the most reviled institution in the country.


    As our Sollecito Book pages make clear again and again and again, the Italian system is remarkably NOT tainted by politics, as even the most surperficial watcher of the trials of ex Prime Minister Sylvio Berlusconi would know.

    And on the issue of popularity we have previously posted this and this and also this.

    Our Italian poster Machiavelli (Yummi), who posted our deep analysis of the appeal to the Supreme Court by Dr Galati, has provided these hard facts:

    For comparison, in 2011 the percentage of Italians who declared they trust the justice system “a lot” or “enough” was 53.3%. By comparison, the percentage of Italians who declared they trust the government “a lot” or “enough”  were 14.7%, and those who trust the parliament were only 15%.

    In 2012, the percentage of Italians who trust the parliament is now only 9.5%, and those who trust the Mario Monti administration are only 21.1%.

    Over the eight years from 2004 to 2012 the percentage of Italians who trust the justice system was always bigger than those who trust parliament or government by at least ten points, and in some years we can see a spread of 20, 30, even 39 percentage points achieved by the judiciary over the parliament and government.

    However, some cases of corruption (such as our Hellmann-Zanetti case, but also several others indicated by the Rapporto Italia 2012) do hamper trust.

    The most trusted institutions in Italy above all are the Carabinieri (74% of Italians trust them) and the Polizia di Stato (71%).

    Which means the most trusted institutions are precisely those law enforcement instruments which are deployed to enforce the orders of prosecutors.

    19. That prosecutors can spin their cases into any shape they please.

    Because the Italian legal system is almost completely blind to precedent and relies on a tangle of impenetrable codes and procedures, prosecutors and judges have almost boundless freedom to spin their cases into any shape they please and create legal justifications on the fly. Often, they are more interested in constructing compelling narratives than in building up the evidence piece by piece, a task considered too prosaic and painstaking to be really interesting.

    Whoever wrote this either wasnt an Italian or a lawyer, and either way didnt have much of a clue. The entire Italian system under the post WWII constitution was designed to PREVENT what Sollecito & Gumbel claim it allows here.

    There are checks and balances and reviews every step of the way. Magistrates (initially Matteini here) determine what a prosecutor may do in developing and presenting a case. Parties may appeal to the Supreme Court AT ANY TIME as Knox’s lawyers did over her second written confession - which she herself had demanded to make in front of Dr Mignini after he finished warning her of her rights.

    Hard for Sollecito & Gumbel to believe, perhaps, but the defense is actually present in the same courtroom. They can raise points of order at any time. So can the defendants themselves, at any time, something maybe unique in the world.

    And judges actually have minds of their own. And then there are the unique written sentencing reports, and the two automatic appeals if any parties want to pursue them.

    Sollecito & Gumbel should have read the 2012 Galati appeal more closely. The Prosecution’s Appeal To The Supreme Court is available in English here.  Precedent has a section to itself - “The non-observance of the principles of law dictated by the Cassation Court in the matter of circumstantial cases (Article 606(b)) in relation to Article 192 paragraph 2 Criminal Procedure Code.”

    Well, that’s precedent, via the Court of Cassation no less! How surprising from Gumbel/Sollecito that they should make that claim about ignoring precedent when in fact there it is, going right to the heart of the flawed Hellmann/Zanetti judgement on circumstantial evidence!  What else is a Code but in effect a codification, a gathering together, a rationalisation, of best law - and precedent? 

    There is an absurd irony here, were they aware of it. Perhaps they are. Surely it is Hellmann and Zanetti who have displayed “a boundless freedom” in spinning the case “into any shape they please”, and who have “created legal justifications on the fly”?  As for prosecutors doing this, at least Dr Mignini followed the evidence, and American readers may recall the infamous Jim Garrison, the DA hero of Oliver Stone’s movie “JFK” but who in reality, unlike Dr Mignini, was a total and utter crackpot.

    And what issue exploded the Porta a Porta TV show in Italy in September 2012? It was Sollecito’s false claim that the prosecution had secretly tried to offer him a deal if he would roll over on Knox.  NOBODY including his own father and his own lawyers confirmed him. Evidence against both was overwhelming. Nobody needed such a deal, and Italian prosecutors are highly rules-bound against ever offering such deals.

    Sollecito was in effect accusing Dr Mignini of a felony with this much-repeated false claim in his book. (In her book Knox also accused Dr Mignini of a felony.)

    20. That the prosecutors and judges in Italy are far too close.

    Prosecutors and judges are not independent of each other, as they are in Britain or the United States, but belong to the same professional body of magistrates. So a certain coziness between them is inevitable, especially in smaller jurisdictions like Perugia.

    Yes, prosecutors and judges in Italy belong to the same professional body of magistrates. But then so does the defense lawyer Ms Bongiorno. The claim that there is no independence between prosecutors and judges in Italy, in fact a coziness between them, is a bit rich.

    Consider, say, the UK. It is true cases are prosecuted by the Crown Prosecution Service, a government body, but in serious cases the CPS will employ barristers from the Inns of Court. There is scarcely a judge in the UK, even up to the highest level, who was not and who is not still a member of one of the Inns of Court from whence barristers, for the prosecution or for the defence, ply their trade.

    You can’t walk past an Inn without seeing the names of judges on the roll call on the plaques outside. A judge is still a barrister, just fulfilling a different function, although, of course, now paid by the State.  The old school boy tie? Corruption? No, the fulfilling of different roles by members of the same body is called professionalism. 

    Judges and lawyers all belong to the American Bar Association in the US and attend the same conferences. No sign that this lack of “independence” ever affects trials.  This claimed excess of coziness is often ranted about online by the Knoxophile David Anderson who lives near Perugia. Nobody who pays him any attention can get where he derives this from. Maybe he heard it from Hellman?

    Perugia prosecutors and magistrates are all known to do a fine job, and the national Olympics & earthquake relief cases involving powerful Rome politicians were assigned for competent handling to where? To Perugia… Defense lawyer Ghirga and Prosecutor Mignini have the reputation of being good friends. And Mignini and Massei would both draw their salaries from the State. But so what? Do not judges and DAs in the the USA do likewise? Are Gumbel and Sollecito impugning the professionalism of the counterparts of Mignini and Massei all over the world? It sure reads like it.

     


    Monday, December 07, 2015

    Counterterrorism: Another Way Italian Law Enforcement Is An Effective Model For Everywhere Else

    Posted by Peter Quennell





    We have often mentioned these major justice-system pluses:

    (1) That Italy has one of the industrialized world’s lowest crime rates and that US cities have been observing its model.

    (2) That it has a very prominent and much admired police presence, and a small and much admired court and penal system.

    Now Thomas Williams is reporting this third big plus from Rome in Breitbart Business News

    A leading military analyst is citing Italy as a model of counterterrorism done right, pointing out that despite many factors going against it, Islamic terrorists have failed to kill a single person on Italian soil.

    In the most recent issue of Nikkei Asian Review, Romanian born political scientist and military analyst Edward N. Luttwak lays out a persuasive theory explaining how Italy has been so successful in thwarting Islamic terror attempts. In a word: Italy is not afraid to deport those it considers to be a threat to national security.

    In his essay titled “Doing Counterterrorism Right,” Luttwak contrasts Italy with France and Belgium, noting that although Italy is much more vulnerable than they are, it has been far more effective at stopping would-be terrorists before they strike.

    So where France has been “caught by surprise again and again by terrorist attacks with many lives lost” and in Belgium “terrorists have been coming and going for years, buying military weapons with remarkable ease,” Italy has remained unscathed.

    It would seem that Italy doesn’t have much going for it. It has porous borders and a Muslim population that exceeds 2 million and has played an active role in military expeditions in Islamic territories. Moreover, the Vatican is the “most iconic target in Europe,” and tops the list of objectives of the Islamic State, Luttwak observes. And yet, “nobody has been killed by Muslim terrorists in Italy.”

    Italian counterterrorism has been on full alert since 9/11, Luttwak says, and its combined forces “have detected and interrupted hundreds of terrorist plots large and small, at every stage from mere verbal scheming to fully ready actions.”

    So where terrorists have successfully attacked in Madrid, London, Paris, Toulouse, Copenhagen, Brussels and elsewhere, in Italy they have been foiled time after time.

    Luttwak suggests that Italy’s success is all a question of method, based on the insight that the only thing that can be done to stop potential terrorists is to follow those who are suspected to be truly dangerous around the clock so that they can be arrested or killed at a moment’s notice. Since the numbers of probable suspects can be astronomical, Luttwak says, their numbers must be effectively reduced if this strategy is to bear fruit. And this is exactly what Italy has done.

    State intelligence agencies throughout Europe monitor suspects, filling out reports and keeping files, but they often fail to take the action needed. The Italians, however, immediately conduct an interrogation on credible suspects, and many are sent home or arrested, if their situation merits it. Italy currently has more than 180 radical imams in prison, Luttwak notes.

    Employing this method, Italian authorities are able to keep numbers of suspected potential terrorists within a reasonable range and thus are able to monitor them effectively.

    Earlier this month, Franco Roberti, the head of Italy’s anti-mafia and counterterrorism task force, said he intended to protect citizens from the danger of terrorism “by adopting all the preventive measures necessary,” and noted that “we must be prepared to give up some of our personal freedoms, in particular in the area of communication.”

    The fact that the Italians lump together anti-mafia operations with counterterrorism is also telling. Unlike other European states, with the exception perhaps of the UK, Italy has a long history fighting serious organized crime within its borders, coming from the different branches of the Italian mafia working in various parts of the peninsula.

    The Italian interior ministry has reportedly also increased its “targeted expulsions” of persons considered to be a risk to national security. So far this year, 55 individuals have been deported and the ministry has said the numbers will only grow.

    According to Italy’s Interior Minister Angelino Alfano, intelligence and counterterrorism units are reevaluating information gathered in recent months on some 56,000 people, scouring case files to see whether anything could have been overlooked.

    Given Italy’s impressive counterterrorism track record, it may be about time for other European nations to sit up and take note.


    Wednesday, September 23, 2015

    Supreme Court Confirms All Three Were There And Lied, RS & AK Apologists Desperate To Downplay That

    Posted by Machiavelli




    1. Shocking Sentencing Report

    Despite the public relations campaign this was by any standards a very strong case.

    In contrast the language, logic and law of the Marasca/Bruno Report are about as weak as Rome lawyers have seen. The Fifth Chambers normally handles only appeals of verdicts for fraud, defamation, and other mundane non-violent personal and family injuries and they are forbidden from judging evidence. Their reports are almost invariably 1-3 pages long.

    No finding by any experienced murder judge ever stretches logic and law and evidence as much as this. This grim situation for RS and AK still remains. 

      (1) The report very firmly places all three at the scene of the crime with extensive language on a long list of proofs; but though bizarrely it separates two from the crime itself.

      (2) The final verdict is not “assoluzione” meaning acquittal or innocence but simply “proscioglimento” meaning the dropping of charges (not usually used in a court context, see the note in the final paragraphs of translation) which can be subject to appeal.

      (3) The report does nothing to help Knox and Sollecito to get beyond their calunnia, villiipendio and diffamazione trials. It makes a win against either or both Knox and Sollecito in a wrongful-death suit more or less an assured thing. And it pre-emptively dismisses the frivolous appeal by Amanda Knox to ECHR Strasbourg.

    If the appeal by Knox and Sollecito against the Nencini court findings and guilty sentences had been handled without chicanery, it is the First Chambers which deals with murder cases and which annulled most of the Hellmann appeal outcome in 2013 which would have got this appeal. Almost certainly those judges would have simply rejected the appeal, and sent Knox and Sollecito right back to jail.

    The report makes lawyers question why Knox and Sollecito were not at minimum found guilty of being accessories to murder after the fact. Even the defense teams seem to have realised the risks in the shaky judgement

    2. Passages Finding Knox And Sollecito Were There

    In chapters 4, 9 and 10 the Marasca/Bruno report makes very clear that Knox and Sollecito were both at the house on the night. They find that the proof of that stands up. Highlighted in the translation below are passages amount to the firm conclusion that Knox definitely was there, with blood on her hands, and Sollecito logically also.

    From Chapter 4

    4.3.1 As for the first question, the use of the [Guede’s] definitive verdict in the current judgement,  for any possible implication, is unexceptionable , since it abides with the provision of art. 238 bis of Penal Code [sic]. Based on such provision “(”¦) the verdicts [p. 26] that have become irrevocable can be accepted [acquired] by courts as pieces of evidence of facts that were ascertained within them and evaluated based on articles 187 and 192 par 3”.

    Well, so the “fact” that was ascertained within that verdict, indisputably, is Guede’s participation in the murder “concurring with other people, who remain unknown”. The invoking of the procedural norms indicated means that the usability of such fact-finding is subordinate to [depends on] the double conditions [possibility] to reconcile such fact within the scope of the “object of proof” which is relevant to the current judgement, and on the existence of further pieces of evidence to confirm its reliability.

    Such double verification, in the current case, has an abundantly positive outcome. In fact it is manifestly evident that such fact, which was ascertained elsewhere [aliunde], relates to the object of cognition of the current judgement. The [court’s] assessment of it, in accord with other trial findings which are valuable to confirm its reliability, is equally correct. We refer to the multiple elements, linked to the overall reconstruction of events, which rule out that Guede could have acted alone.

    Firstly, testifying in this direction are the two main wounds (actually three) observed on the victim’s neck, on each side, with a diversified path and features, attributable most likely (even if the data is contested by the defense) to two different cutting weapons. And also, the lack of signs of resistance by the young woman, since no traces of the assailant were found under her nails, and there is no evidence elsewhere [aliunde] of any desperate attempt to oppose the aggressor; the bruises on her upper limbs and those on mandibular area and lips (likely the result of forcible hand action of constraint meant to keep the victim’s mouth shut) found during the cadaver examination, and above all, the appalling modalities of the murder, which were not adequately pointed out in the appealed ruling.

    And in fact, the same ruling (p. 323 and 325) reports of abundant blood spatters found on the right door of the wardrobe located inside Kercher’s room, about 50 cm above the floor. Such occurrence, given the location and direction of the drops, could probably lead to the conclusion that the young woman had her throat literally “slashed” likely as she was kneeling, while her head was being forcibly held [hold] tilted towards the floor, at a close distance from the wardrobe, when she was hit by multiple stab wounds at her neck, one of which ““ the one inflicted on the left side of her neck ““ caused her death, due to asphyxia following [to] the massive bleeding, which also filled the breathing ways preventing breathing activity, a situation aggravated by the rupture of the hyoid bone ““ this also linkable to the blade action ““ with consequent dyspnoea” (p. 48).

    Such a mechanical action is hardly attributable to the conduct of one person alone.

    [Ed note: Firm settling on motive is not required in Italian law.] On the other hand such factual finding, when adequately valued, could have been not devoid of meaning as for researching the motive, given that [27] the extreme violence of the criminal action could have been seen ““ because of its abnormal disproportion ““ not compatible with any of the explanations given in the verdict, such as mere simple grudges with Ms. Knox (also denied by testimonies presented, [even] by the victim’s mother);  with sexual urges of any of the participants, or maybe even with the theory of a sex game gone wrong, of which, by the way, no mark was found on the victim’s body, besides the violation of her sexuality by a hand action of Mr. Guede, because of the DNA that could be linked to him found inside the vagina of Ms. Kercher, the consent of whom, however, during a preliminary phase of physical approach possibly consensual at the beginning, could not be ruled out. 

    Such finding is even less compatible with the theory of the intrusion of an unknown thief inside the house, if we consider that, within the course of ordinary events, while it is possible that a thief is taken by an uncontrollable sexual urge leading him to assail a young woman when he sees her,  it’s rather unlikely that after a physical and sexual aggression he would also commit a gratuitous murder, especially not with the fierce brutality of this case, rather than running away quickly instead. Unless, obviously, we think about the disturbed personality of a serial killer, but there is no trace of that in the trial findings, since there are no records that any other killings of young women with the same modus operandi were committed in Perugia at that time.

    From Chapter 9

    9.4.1 Given this, we now note, with respect to Amanda Knox, that her presence inside the house, the location of the murder, is a proven fact in the trial, in accord with her own admissions, also contained in the memoriale with her signature, in the part where she tells that, as she was in the kitchen, while the young English woman had retired inside the room of same Ms. Kercher together with another person for a sexual intercourse, she heard a harrowing scream from her friend, so piercing and unbearable that she let herself down squatting on the floor, covering her ears tight with her hands in order not to hear more of it.

    About this, the judgment of reliability expressed by the lower [a quo] judge [Nencini, ed.] with reference to this part of the suspect’s narrative, [and] about the plausible implication from the fact herself was the first person mentioning for the first time [46] a possible sexual motive for the murder, at the time when the detectives still did not have the results from the cadaver examination, nor the autopsy report, nor the witnesses’ information, which was collected only subsequently, about the victim’s terrible scream and about the time when it was heard (witnesses Nara Capezzali, Antonella Monacchia and others), is certainly to be subscribed to.

    We make reference in particular to those declarations that the current appellant [Knox] produced on 11. 6. 2007 (p.96) inside the State Police headquarters. On the other hand, in the slanderous declarations against Lumumba, which earned her a conviction, the status of which is now protected as final judgement [giudicato], [they] had themselves exactly that premise in the narrative, that is: the presence of the young American woman inside the house in via della Pergola, a circumstance which nobody at that time ““ except obviously the other people present inside the house ““ could have known (quote p. 96).

    According to the slanderous statements of Ms. Knox, she had returned home in the company of Lumumba, who she had met by chance in Piazza Grimana, and when Ms. Kercher arrived in the house, Knox’s companion directed sexual attentions toward the young English woman, then he went together with her in her room, from which the harrowing scream came. So, it was Lumumba who killed Meredith and she could affirm this since she was on the scene of crime herself, albeit in another room.

    Another element against her is the mixed DNA traces, her and the victim’s one, in the “small bathroom”, an eloquent proof that anyway she had come into contact with the blood of the latter, which she tried to wash away from herself (it was, it seems, diluted blood, while the biological traces belonging to her would be the consequence of epithelial rubbing).

    (Ed: This next passages on hypotheticals shows how ignorant of murder jurisprudence Marasca & Bruno were, they had never handled a murder case before.]  The fact is very suspicious, but it’s not decisive, besides the known considerations about the sure nature and attribution of the traces in question. 

    Nonetheless, even if we deem the attribution certain, the trial element would not be unequivocal, since it may show also a posthumous touching of that blood, during the probable attempt of removing the most visible traces of what had happened, maybe to help cover up for someone or to steer away suspicion from herself, but not contributing to full certainty about her direct involvement in the murderous action. Any further and more pertaining interpretation in fact would be anyway resisted by the circumstance ““ this is decisive indeed ““ that no trace linkable to her was found on the scene of crime or on the victim’s body, so it follows ““ if we concede everything ““ that her contact with the victim’s blood happened in a subsequent moment and in another room of the house.

    Another element against her is certainly constituted by the false accusations [calunnia] against Mr. Lumumba, afore-mentioned above.

    It is not understandable, in fact, what reason could have driven the young woman to produce such serious accusations. The theory that she did so in order to escape psychological pressure from detectives seems extremely fragile, given that the woman [47] could not fail to realize that such accusations directed against her boss would turn out to be false very soon, given that, as she knew very well, Mr. Lumumba had no relationship with Ms. Kercher nor with the Via della Pergola house. Furthermore, the ability to present an ironclad alibi would have allowed Lumumba to obtain release and subsequently the dropping of charges.

    However, the said calunnia is another circumstantial element against the current appellant, insofar as it can be considered a strategy in order to cover up for Mr. Guede, whom she had an interest to protect because of fear of retaliatory accusations against her. This is confirmed by the fact that Mr. Lumumba, like Mr. Guede, is a man of colour, hence the indication of the first one would be safe in the event that the latter could have been seen by someone while entering or exiting the apartment. 

    And moreover, the staging of a theft in Romanelli’s room, which she is accused of,  is also a relevant point within an incriminating picture, considering the elements of strong suspicion (location of glass shards ““ apparently resulting from the breaking of a glass window pane caused by the throwing of a rock from the outside ““ on top of, but also under clothes and furniture), a staging, which can be linked to someone who ““ as an author of the murder and a flatmate [titolare] with a formal [“qualified”] connection to the dwelling ““ had an interest to steer suspicion away from himself/herself, while a third murderer in contrast would be motivated by a very different urge after the killing, that is to leave the apartment as quickly as possible.

    But also this element is substantially ambiguous, especially if we consider the fact that when the postal police arrived ““ they arrived in Via della Pergola for another reason: to search for Ms. Romanelli, the owner of the telephone SIM card found inside one of the phones retrieved in via Sperandio ““ the current appellants themselves, Sollecito specifically, were the ones who pointed out the anomalous situation to the officers, as nothing appeared to be stolen from Ms. Romanelli’s room. 

    Elements of strong suspicion are also in the inconsistencies and lies which the suspect woman committed over the statements she released on various occasions, especially in the places where her narrative was contradicted by the telephone records showing different incoming SMS messages; by the testimonies of Antonio Curatolo about the presence of [the same] Amanda Knox in piazza Grimana in the company of Sollecito, and of Mario Quintavalle about her presence inside the supermarket the morning of the day after the murder, maybe to buy detergents.

    Despite this, the features of intrinsic inconsistency and poor reliability of the witnesses, which were objected to many times during the trial, do not allow to attribute unconditional trust to their versions, in order to prove with reassuring certainty the failure, and so the falsehood, of the alibi presented by the suspect woman, who claimed to have been at her boyfriend’s home since the late afternoon of November 1st until the morning of the following day. Mr. Curatolo (an enigmatic character: a clochard, drug addicted and dealer) [48] besides the fact that his declarations were late and the fact that he was not foreign to judiciary showing-off in judicial cases with a strong media impact, he was also contradicted about his reference to young people waiting for public buses to leave in the direction of disco clubs in the area, since it was asserted that the night of the murder the bus service was not operational; and also the reference to masks and jokes, which he says he witnessed that evening, would lead to believe that it was on Halloween night, on October 31., and not on Nov. 1. instead.

    The latter point apparently balances ““ still within a context of uncertainty and ambiguousness ““ the witness’ reference to (regarding the context where he reportedly noticed the two suspects together) the day before the one when he noticed (at an afternoon hour) an unusual movement of Police and Carabinieri, and in particular people wearing white suites and head covers (as if they were extra-terrestrials) entering the house in Via della Pergola (obviously on November 2., after the discovery of the body).

    Mr. Quintavalle ““ apart from the lateness of his statements, initially reticent and generic ““ did not offer any contribute of certainty, not even about the goods bought by the young woman noticed on the morning subsequent to the murder, when he opened his store, while his recognizing Knox in the courtroom is not relevant, since her image had appeared on all newspapers and tv news.

    Regarding the biological traces, signed with letters A and I (the latter analysed by the RIS) sampled from the knife seized in Sollecito’s house and yielding Knox’s genetic profile, they constitute a neutral element, given that the same suspect lived together with Mr. Sollecito in the same home in via Garibaldi, although she alternated with the via della Pergola home, and ““ as for what was said ““ the same instrument did not have blood traces from Ms. Kercher, a negative circumstance that contrasted the accusation hypotheses that it was the murder weapon.

    On that point, it must be pointed out that ““ again following a disputable strategic choice by the scientific police genetic experts ““ it was decided that the investigation aimed at identifying the genetic profile should be privileged, rather than finding its biological nature, given that the quantity of the samples did not allow a double test: the quality test would in fact would have “used up” the sample or made it unusable for further tests. A very disputable option, since the detecting of blood traces, referable to Ms. Kercher, would have provided the trial with a datum of a formidable probative relevance, incontrovertibly certifying the use of the weapon for the committing of the crime.

    The verified presence of the same weapon inside Sollecito’s house, where Ms. Knox was living together with him, would have allowed then any possible deduction in this respect. Instead, the verified identification of the traces with genetic profiles of Ms. Knox resolves itself in a not unequivocal and rather indifferent datum, given that the young American woman was living together with Mr. Sollecito, sharing time between his dwelling and [49] the Via della Pergola one. Not only that, but even if it was possible to attribute with certainty trace B to the genetic profile of Ms. Kercher, the trial datum would have been not decisive (since it’s not a blood trace), given the promiscuity or commonality of inter-personal relations typical of out-of-town students, which make it plausible that a kitchen knife or any other tool could be transported from one house to the other and thus, the seized knife could have been brought by Ms. Knox in Via della Pergola for domestic use, in occasion of convivial meetings or other events, and therefore be used by Ms. Kercher.

    What is certain is, that on the knife no blood traces were found, a lack which cannot be referred to an accurate cleaning. As was accurately pointed out by the defence attorneys, the knife had traces of starch, a sign of ordinary home use and of a washing anything but accurate. Not only, but starch is, notoriously, a substance with remarkable absorbing property, thus it is very likely that in the event of a stabbing, blood elements would be retained by it.

    It is completely implausible the accusative assumption on the point, that the young woman would be used to carrying the bulky item with her for a self-defence purpose, using ““ it is said ““ the large bag she had for that purpose.  It wouldn’t be actually understandable why the woman, if warned by her boyfriend to pay attention during her night time movements, was not in possession of one of the small pocket knives surely owned by Sollecito, who apparently had the hobby of that kind of weapon and was a collector of a number of them.

    Finally, the matching with the current appellant woman of the footprints found in the place location of the murder is far from being certain.             

    9.4.2 Also the evidential picture about Mr. Sollecito, emerging from the impugned verdict, appears marked by intrinsic and irreducible contradictions. His presence on the murder scene, and specifically inside the room where the murder was committed, is linked to only the biological trace found on the bra fastener hook (item 165/b), the attribution of which, however, cannot have any certainty, since such trace is insusceptible of a second amplification, given its scarce amount, for that it is ““ as we said ““ an element lacking of circumstantial evidentiary value.

    There remains anyway the strong suspicion that he 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. But as it was previously noted, such witness statements appeared to have strong margins of ambiguity and approximation, so that could not reasonably constitute the foundation of any certainty, besides the problematic judgement of reliability expressed by the lower [a quo] judge.

    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. 

    Finally, no certainty could be reached [was acquired] about the attribution to Mr. Sollecito of the footprints found in the via della Pergola house, about which the technical reports carried out have not gone beyond a judgement of “probable identity”, and not of certainty (p. 260/1).

    9.4.3. It is simply the case to observe, that the declaration of the lacking of a probative framework, coherent and sufficient to support the accusatory hypothesis regarding the more serious case of the homicide, reverberates on the residual, accessory charges referred in point d) (theft of the phones) and e) (simulation of crime).

    From Chapter 10

    10. The intrinsic contradiction of probative elements emerging from the text of the appealed sentence, undermines in nuce the connecting tissue of the same sentence, causing the annulment of it.

    And in fact, when facing a picture marked by such contradiction, the appeal judge was not supposed to issue a conviction but rather ““ as we observed above ““ they were compelled to issue a ruling of acquittal with reference to art. 530 paragraph 2 of penal procedure code. 

    At this point the last question remains, about the annulment formula ““ that is, whether it should be annulled with remand or without remand. The solving of such question is obviously related to the objective possibility of further tests, which could resolve the aspects of uncertainty, maybe through new technical investigations. 

    The answer is certainly negative, because the biological traces on the items relevant to the investigation are of scarce entity, as such they can’t undergo amplification, and thus they won’t render answers of absolute reliability, neither in terms of identity nor in terms of compatibility.

    The computers belonging to Amanda Knox and to Ms. Kercher, which maybe could have provided information useful to the investigation, were, incredibly, burned by hazardous operations by investigators, which caused electric shock following a probable error of power source; and they can’t render any further information anymore, since it’s an irreversible damage. [Ed: unproven how damage occurred, all records were recovered.]

    The set of court testimonies is exhaustive, given the accuracy and completeness of the evidentiary trial phase, which had re-openings both times in the instances of appeal [rinvio; sic].

    Mr. Guede, who was sure a co-participant to the murder, has always refused to cooperate, and for the already stated reasons he can’t be compelled to testify.

    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).   

    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] of dropping of charges 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:  Under the Italian Procedure Code, the Italian word for “acquittal” is actually “assoluzione”; while the term “proscioglimento” instead, actually refers only to non-definitive preliminary judgements during the investigation phase, and it could be translated as “dropping of charges”. When applied to the investigation phase “proscioglimento” is normally meant as a not-binding decision, not subjected to double jeopardy, since it is not considered a judgement nor a court’s decision.]

    The annulment of the verdict of conviction of Ms. Knox as for the crime written at letter A), implies the ruling out of the aggravation of teleological nexus as for the art. 61 par. 2 Penal Code. The ruling out of such aggravating circumstance makes it necessary to re-determine the penalty, which is to be quantified in the same length established by the Court of Appeals of Perugia, about the adequacy of which large and sufficient justification was given, based on determination parameters which are to be subscribed to entirely.

    It is just worth to note that the outcome of the judgement allows to deem as absorbed, or implicitly ruled out, any other objection, deduction or request by the defences, while any other argumentative aspect among those not examined, should be deemed manifestly inadmissible since it obviously belongs to the merit.



    3. Wrong Translation Circulated By Amanda Knox

    This version was garbled apparently to try to show innocence.  (It is a crime to deliberately garble Italian legal documents.)


    Above: wrong Knox version. Correct translation again:

    4.3.1 As for the first question, the use of the [Guede’s] definitive verdict in the current judgement,  for any possible implication, is unexceptionable , since it abides with the provision of art. 238 bis of Penal Code [sic]. Based on such provision “(”¦) the verdicts [p. 26] that have become irrevocable can be accepted [acquired] by courts as pieces of evidence of facts that were ascertained within them and evaluated based on articles 187 and 192 par 3”.


    Above: wrong Knox version. Correct translation again:

    9.4.1 Given this, we now note, with respect to Amanda Knox, that her presence inside the house, the location of the murder, is a proven fact in the trial, in accord with her own admissions, also contained in the memoriale with her signature, in the part where she tells that, as she was in the kitchen, while the young English woman had retired inside the room of same Ms. Kercher together with another person for a sexual intercourse, she heard a harrowing scream from her friend, so piercing and unbearable that she let herself down squatting on the floor, covering her ears tight with her hands in order not to hear more of it.

    About this, the judgment of reliability expressed by the lower [a quo] judge [Nencini, ed.] with reference to this part of the suspect’s narrative, [and] about the plausible implication from the fact herself was the first person mentioning for the first time [46] a possible sexual motive for the murder, at the time when the detectives still did not have the results from the cadaver examination, nor the autopsy report, nor the witnesses’ information, which was collected only subsequently, about the victim’s terrible scream and about the time when it was heard (witnesses Nara Capezzali, Antonella Monacchia and others), is certainly to be subscribed to.


    Monday, September 07, 2015

    Knox Calunnia Trial #2: Testimony In Florence Court Today By Some Accused By Amanda Knox Of Crimes

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters




    1. Overview Of This Post

    The post is in 3 parts and was added to on the fly as new information flowed in.

    Part 2 below summarizes what this trial is all about. It is not about Knox’s book, it is about her claims on the stand in mid 2009 of crimes committed by numerous investigators and the lead prosecutor.

    Part 3 below is live reports from the court. Part 4 is about the Supreme Court sentencing report released today in Rome.

    2. Background To Calunnia Trial

    This trial focuses on the claims of Amanda Knox at trial in 2009. Charges for malicious claims in her book will fall to another court, probably also in Florence. Oggi is already on trial for republishing some of them.

    There seems no parallel in US or UK legal history to this - to a defendant testifying prolifically for two days to crimes by investigators, in spite of even more days of prior testimony which all pointed the other way.

    Seemingly under strong pressure from her own family Knox willingly took a huge legal risk which her own lawyers had warned her about again and again, sometimes publicly, over nearly two years.

    They never ever lodged even one complaint. Nor did the US Embassy in Rome, which monitored all sessions in court, and often checked her out (as did Italian MP Rocco Girlanda) in prison at Capanne.

    The Massei court and the watching audience in Italy (read here and here) bought none of it. Knox still served three years for framing Patrick. Not even Judge Hellmann bought into her claims. Certainly not the Supreme Court.

    The current trial in Florence was preceded by an investigation by Florence prosecutors, who bring the charges and argue them because Knox impugned officers of the justice system in their official roles. 

    Prior to today the prosecutors’ investigation report had only been released to Knox’s defense. So we don’t yet know if the charges extend beyond Knox’s claims of having been abused into a false “confession” on 5-6 November 2007.

    Post #1 of our ongoing Interrogation Hoax series points toward what investigators testified to at trial.

    Four months later Knox contradicted them at length as summarised in our two posts here and here: “The Amanda Knox Calunnia Trial In Florence: What It Is All About”

    2. Machiavelli Reports From Calunnia Trial

    1. Tweets from the Florence court:

    16. Zugarini was present throughout the interrogation and described when #amandaknox started to cry, remembered her peculiar hand-ear gestures.

    15. Napoleoni testified #amandaknox was brought a chamomille when she started crying at 01:45, the interrogation was immediately stopped.

    14. Napoleoni and Zugarini said they “cuddled” Knox because she was a 20-year old girl.

    13. Both Mignini and Zugarini described having had impression that #amandaknox was feeling “relieved of a burden” after accusing Lumumba.

    12. Mignini said Knox was not clearly a suspect to him by the 05:45 interrogation.

    11. Witnesses had inaccurate memory on some details, but were convergent on some peculiar details.

    10. Napoleoni said she did not enter interrogation room, she called Rita Ficarra out to talk to her.

    9. Zugarini said, as for her knowledge, Knox was not told that Sollecito withdrew her alibi.

    8. Zugarini said called interpreter only to ask #amandaknox more precise questions about people in her phone contact list.

    7. Zugarini said #amandaknox was able to explain herself in Italian. They called an interpreter to translate what police had to say.

    6. Testimony of Mignini was descriptive and framed thing in law. Mostly talked at length explaining alone, prosecutor listened.

    5. In today’s hearing, Mignini talked 2 hours, confirmed arrived at 3am, police interview was over, he asked no questions of AK.

    4. Napoleoni was precise and synthetic. Zugarini longer and IMO more interesting on many details.

    3. Mignini and Judge Boninsegna appeared irritated by Dalla Vedova’s remarks.

    2. Long hearing of Mignini at trial against Amanda Knox for calunnia. Napoleoni & Gubbiotti followed, then Zugarini

    1. Testimony of some of the investigators accused by Knox and the lead prosecutor Dr Mignini [image above] is being taken in court.

    [Reporting from the Florence court sometimes requires a wait to get to a place where mobile phones can connect to the outside.]

    2. Emailed report following day (8 September):

    No Knox calunnia session required today as last Friday and yesterday both sides completed their witness list.

    Amanda Knox and Curt Knox chose not to testify.

    Now Judge Boninsegna has ordered each side to prepare their arguments within three months (7 December).

    The verdict is likely to arrive in the New Year.

    4. Machiavelli On Cassazione Sentencing Report

    4. The Cassazione sentence on the #meredithkercher case about #amandaknox and #raffaelesollecito is an offence to intelligence.

    3. Cassazione repeats several times “strong suspicion” remains about #amandaknox and #raffaelesollecito

    2. Cassazione says #amandaknox was in the apartment when murder was convicted, and it is “incontrovertible” that she committed calunnia.

    1. INCREDIBLE: SC says *proven* fact that #amandaknox was in house when murder was committed. Agrees with court on this


    Tuesday, September 01, 2015

    The Amanda Knox Calunnia Trial In Florence: What It Is All About #2

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Above: Florence Prosecutor Dr Angela Pietroiusti. Quick route to Comments here.

    1. Most Bungling Team In Legal History?

    There is NO WAY Knox and Sollecito would be out on the streets if the playing field had been level.

    Knox’s lawyers and family and PR effort and publishers all bungled enormously and suffered an overwhelming loss at both Knox’s trials (murder and calunnia) when pre-trial concessions could have served them well.

    To make up for this, they tilted the playing field.

    Manipulation of the media and thus American (but not Italian) opinion and manipulation of the evidence and manipulation of judges and manipulation of court-appointed DNA experts and manipulation to prevent Italy from finding out what was in Knox’s and Sollecito’s horrific books.

    You want to see manipulation in spades?

    See here and here and the whole huge area of the DNA and of course the RS and AK books.

    You want to see bungling in spades?

    No better example than this one which could possibly cost Sollecito lawyer Luca Maori his career and has stopped the Fifth Chambers of Cassation dead in their tracks.

    Also Knox’s and Sollecito’s foolish books involving dozens of others are coming back to haunt them in court. Also look here at how Chris Mellas dropped Knox in it.

    Helping Sollecito cost his sister Vanessa her Carbinieri job. Sollecito’s father admitted to Panorama he tried political manipulation and was charged. Knox’s parents parroted Amanda Knox and were charged. “Helpful” investigator Paul Ciolino framed an innocent man in another case and was charged. Doug Preston ally Mario Spezi smeared investigators after the two tried framing an innocent man and blocking an investigation getting too near the truth and Spezi was charged.

    Judge Heavey lied to national presidents everywhere and was reprimanded and soon retired. The defense arranged for Judge Hellmann to preside over the 2011 appeal; he was overturned and pushed out. Pepperdine University pushed out the besotted security guard Steve Moore. Frank Sforza, facing felony charges, took off like a rabbit out of America. Defense witness Aviello was charged. 

    The defenses’ attempt to climb in Filomena’s window came up short. This bungled frame-up went nowhere. The pathetic Bruce Fischer team has gone nowhere.

    2. Bungling In Knox’s Calunnia Case

    Keeping Knox quiet for her own good was always a mighty struggle and the defense lawyers openly complained. It was an open secret in Perugia from 2007 to 2009 that Knox’s defense lawyers were struggling with Knox herself and with her family and her PR.

    At least one defense lawyer was fired or walked off the job (as with the Sollecito team). This struggle broke out into the open at various times, for example see here.

    Still. Knox’s defense team also did at least five things to help make matters worse for her in her calunnia trial now.

      1) They allowed Knox to interrupt prosecution witness Anna Donnino, the interpreter, during her testimony in March 2009 to claim she was hit, having repeatedly said previously that that was untrue. That set the legal reaction in motion.

      2) They put Knox on the stand seemingly unbriefed and allowed her to contradict both days and days of prosecution testimony and also prior declarations by herself.

      3) They put a presumably privileged letter from Knox to themselves in evidence (see previous post) knowing that it contained false claims.

      4) They applied to a Perugia judge for the transfer of the calunnia case from Perugia to Florence, thinking the Florence court was gunning for Dr Mignini when the truth is opposite.

      5) They applied to the same Perugia judge for the attachment of Dr Mignini’s name to the complaint though they knew he was not at the “interrogation” as even Knox said on the stand.

    Due to failed defense efforts Knox has already served three years and is a felon for life, and she now could face another six plus more penalties for her book. She is still not off the hook for murder as Fifth Chambers judges broke two laws and had fishy friends in their pasts.

    So, good luck, Amanda Knox. GREAT TEAM!

    3. Day Two Of Knox’s Testimony

    These are excerpts related to the “interrogation” of 5-6 Nov. Important: we dont yet know what else the prosecutors will include in their charges as much of Knox’s testimony was on other things about which she also lied.

    Excerpts in both posts are from the full transcript on the Case Wiki, and all transcription and translation into English (a massive task) was by the PMF Team.

    Cross Examination By Prosecutor Mignini

    GM:  In your preceding declarations, on Nov 2 at 15:30, on Nov 3 at 14:45, then, there was another one, Nov 4, 14:45, and then there’s Nov 6, 1:45. Only in these declarations, and then in the following spontaneous declarations, did you mention the name of Patrick. Why hadn’t you ever mentioned him before?
    AK:  Because that was the one where they suggested Patrick’s name to me.
    GM:  All right, now is the time for you to make this precise and specific. At this point I will take…no, I’ll come back to it later. You need to explain this. You have stated: “The name of Patrick was suggested to me. I was hit, pressured.”
    AK:  Yes.
    GM:  Now you have to tell me in a completely detailed way, you have to remember for real, you have to explain step by step, who, how, when, was the name of Patrick suggested to you, and what had been done before that point. The name of Patrick didn’t just come up like a mushroom; there was a preceding situation. Who put pressure on you, what do you mean by the word “pressure”, who hit you? You said: “They hit me”, and at the request of the lawyer Ghirga, yesterday, you described two little blows, two cuffs.
    AK:  Yes.
    GM:  So that would be what you meant by being hit?
    AK:  Yes.
    GM:  Or something else? Tell me if there was something else. You can tell us.
    AK:  Okay.
    GCM:  So, you are—[Interruptions] The question is—[Interruptions] Escuse me. Excuse me. The question is quite clear. He is repeating this in order to give the accused a chance to add something to these events that were explained by the accused yesterday. The pubblico ministero is asking to return to these events mentioned yesterday in order to obtain more detail about exactly what happened and who did it. Please be as precise as possible.
    GM:  So you were in front of—
    GCM:  The question is clear.
    GM:  All right, so tell us.
    GCM:  Yes, it’s clear.
    AK:  All right. Okay.
    GCM:  If you could give more detail, be more precise, exactly what was suggested to you, about the cuffs, all that.
    AK:  Okay.
    GCM:  And who did all this, if you can.
    AK:  Okay. Fine. So, when I got to the Questura, they placed me to the side, near the elevator, where I was waiting for Raffaele. I had taken my homework, and was starting to do my homework, but a policeman came in, in fact there were I don’t know, three of them or something, and they wanted to go on talking to me. They asked me again—
    GM:  Excuse me, excuse me—
    AK:  [coldly] Can I tell the story?
    GM:  Excuse me for interrupting you otherwise we’ll forget—
    CDV:  Presidente, I object to this way of doing things. The question was asked—[Yelling, interruptions]—we should wait for the answer.
    GM:  It’s impossible to go on like this, no, no.
    CDV:  If a question is asked, she has to be able to answer.
    GCM:  Please, please. That’s correct. There is a rule that was introduced, which says that we should absolutely avoid interruptions from anyone.
    CDV:  I want to ask that she be allowed to finish her answer. She has the right, no?
    GCM:  Please, please, pubblico ministero. It’s impossible to go on this way.
    GM:  I would like to, I can—
    GCM:  No no no, no one can. We have to make sure that while someone is speaking, there are never any superimposed voices. And since the accused is undergoing examination, she has the right to be allowed to answer in the calmest possible way. Interruptions and talking at the same time don’t help her, and they can’t be written down in the minutes, which obliges the courts to suspend the audience and start it again at a calmer and more tranquil moment.
    GM:  Presidente—
    GCM:  No, no, no! Interruptions are absolutely not allowed! Not between the parties, nor when the Court, the President is speaking. So, interruptions are not allowed. Now, the accused is speaking, and when she is finished, we can return to her answers—
    GM:  Presidente.
    GCM:  Excuse me, please! But at the moment she is speaking, we have to avoid interrupting her. But—I don’t know if this is what was wanted—but while you are speaking, if you could tell us when. For instance, you say you were doing homework, but you didn’t tell us when. We need to know when, on what day, the 2nd of November, the 3rd, what time it was. While you are talking, you need to be more detailed, as detailed as you can with respect to the date and the time.
    AK:  Okay.
    GCM:  And we must avoid interruptions, but when you have finished, we can discuss your answer.
    AK:  Thank you. So, here is…how I understood the question, I’m answering about what happened to me on the night of the 5th and the morning of the 6th of November 2007, and when we got to the Questura, I think it was around 10:30 or nearer 11, but I’m sorry, I don’t know the times very precisely, above all during that interrogation. The more the confusion grew, the more I lost the sense of time. But I didn’t do my homework for a very long time. I was probably just reading the first paragraph of what I had to read, when these policemen came to sit near me, to ask me to help them by telling them who had ever entered in our house. So I told them, okay, well there was this girlfriend of mine and they said no no no, they only wanted to know about men. So I said okay, here are the names of the people I know, but really I don’t know, and they said, names of anyone you saw nearby, so I said, there are some people that are friends of the boys, or of the girls, whom I don’t know very well, and it went on like this, I kept on answering these questions, and finally at one point, while I was talking to them, they said “Okay, we’ll take you into this other room.” So I said okay and went with them, and they started asking me to talk about what I had been doing that evening. At least, they kept asking about the last time I saw Meredith, and then about everything that happened the next morning, and we had to repeat again and again everything about what I did. Okay, so I told them, but they always kept wanting times and schedules, and time segments: “What did you do between 7 and 8?” “And from 8 to 9? And from 9 to 10?” I said look, I can’t be this precise, I can tell you the flow of events, I played the guitar, I went to the house, I looked at my e-mails, I read a book, and I was going on like this. There were a lot people coming in and going out all the time, and there was one policeman always in front of me, who kept going on about this. Then at one point an interpreter arrived, and the interpreter kept on telling me, try to remember the times, try to remember the times, times, times, times, and I kept saying “I don’t know. I remember the movie, I remember the dinner, I remember what I ate,” and she kept saying “How can you you remember this thing but not that thing?” or “How can you not remember how you were dressed?” because I was thinking, I had jeans, but were they dark or light, I just can’t remember. And then she said “Well, someone is telling us that you were not at Raffaele’s house. Raffaele is saying that at these times you were not home.” And I said, but what is he saying, that I wasn’t there? I was there! Maybe I can’t say exactly what I was doing every second, every minute, because I didn’t look at the time. I know that I saw the movie, I ate dinner. And she would say “No no no, you saw the film at this time, and then after that time you went out of the house. You ate dinner with Raffaele, and then there is this time where you did nothing, and this time where you were out of the house.” And I said, no, that’s not how it was. I was always in Raffaele’s apartment.
    GCM:  [taking advantage of a tiny pause to slip in without exactly interrupting] Excuse me, excuse me, the pubblico ministero wants to hear precise details about the suggestions about what to say, and also about the cuffs, who gave them to you.
    AK:  All right. What it was, was a continuous crescendo of these discussions and arguments, because while I was discussing with them, in the end they started to little by little and then more and more these remarks about “We’re not convinced by you, because you seem to be able to remember one thing but not remember another thing. We don’t understand how you could take a shower without seeing…” And then, they kept on asking me “Are you sure of what you’re saying? Are you sure? Are you sure? If you’re not sure, we’ll take you in front of a judge, and you’ll go to prison, if you’re not telling the truth.” Then they told me this thing about how Raffaele was saying that I had gone out of the house. I said look, it’s impossible. I don’t know if he’s really saying that or not, but look, I didn’t go out of the house. And they said “No, you’re telling a lie. You’d better remember what you did for real, because otherwise you’re going to prison for 30 years because you’re a liar.” I said no, I’m not a liar. And they said “Are you sure you’re not protecting someone?” I said no, I’m not protecting anyone. And they said “We’re sure you’re protecting someone.” Who, who, who, who did you meet when you went out of Raffaele’s house?” I didn’t go out. “Yes, you did go out. Who were you with?” I don’t know. I didn’t do anything. “Why didn’t you go to work?” Because my boss told me I didn’t have to go to work. “Let’s see your telephone to see if you have that message.” Sure, take it. “All right.” So one policeman took it, and started looking in it, while the others kept on yelling “We know you met someone, somehow, but why did you meet someone?” But I kept saying no, no, I didn’t go out, I’m not pro-pro-pro—-
    GCM:  [taking advantage of her stammer] Excuse me, okay, we understand that there was a continuous crescendo.
    AK:  Yes.
    GCM:  As you said earlier. But if we could now get to the questions of the pubblico ministero, otherwise it will really be impossible to avoid some interruptions. If you want to be able to continue as tranquilly, as continuously as possible…
    AK:  Okay, I’m sorry.
    GCM:  So, if you could get to the questions about exactly when, exactly who… these suggestions, exactly what did they consist in? It seems to me…
    AK:  Okay. Fine. So, they had my telephone, and at one point they said “Okay, we have this message that you sent to Patrick”, and I said I don’t think I did, and they yelled “Liar! Look! This is your telephone, and here’s your message saying you wanted to meet him!” And I didn’t even remember that I had written him a message. But okay, I must have done it. And they were saying that the message said I wanted to meet him. That was one thing. Then there was the fact that there was this interpreter next to me, and she was telling me “Okay, either you are an incredibly stupid liar, or you’re not able to remember anything you’ve done.” So I said, how could that be? And she said, “Maybe you saw something so tragic, so terrible that you can’t remember it. Because I had a terrible accident once where I broke my leg…”
    GCM:  The interpreter said this to you?
    AK:  The interpreter, yes.
    GCM:  I also wanted to ask you because it isn’t clear to me: only the interpreter spoke to you, or the others also?
    AK:  All the others also.
    GCM:  Everyone was talking to you, all the others, but were they speaking in English?
    AK:  No, in Italian.
    GCM:  In Italian. And you answered in Italian?
    AK:  In Italian, in English…
    GCM:  And what was said to you in Italian, did it get translated to you in English?
    AK:  A bit yes, a bit no, there was so much confusion, there were so many people all talking at the same time, one saying “Maybe it was like this, maybe you don’t remember,” another saying “No, she’s a stupid liar,” like that…
    GCM:  But everything was eventually translated, or you understood some of it and answered right away?
    AK:  It wasn’t like an interrogation, like what we’re doing now, where one person asks me a question and I answer. No. There were so many people talking, asking, waiting, and I answered a bit here and there.
    GCM:  All right. You were telling us that the interpreter was telling you about something that had happened to her. [Interruption by Mignini.] But you need to get back to the questions asked by the pubblico ministero. This isn’t a spontaneous declaration now. This is an examination. That means the pubblico ministero has asked you a question, always the same question, and we still haven’t really heard the answer to it.
    AK:  Yes, sorry.
    GCM:  Right, so you were saying that there was this continuous crescendo.
    AK:  It’s difficult for me to say that one specific person said one specific thing. It was the fact that there were all these little suggestions, and someone was saying that there was the telephone, then there was the fact that… then more than anything what made me try to imagine something was someone saying to me “Maybe you’re confused, maybe you’re confused and you should try to remember something different. Try to find these memories that obviously you have somehow lost. You have to try to remember them. So I was there thinking, but what could I have forgotten? And I was thinking, what have I forgotten? what have I forgotten? and they were shouting “Come on, come on, come on, remember, remember, remember,” and boom! on my head. [Amanda slaps herself on the back of the head: End of video segment] “Remember!” And I was like—Mamma Mia! and then boom! [slaps head again] “Remember!”
    GCM:  Excuse me, excuse me, please, excuse me…
    AK:  Those were the cuffs.
    GCM:  So, the pubblico ministero asked you, and is still asking you, who is the person that gave you these two blows that you just showed us on yourself?
    AK:  It was a policewoman, but I didn’t know their names.
    GM:  Go ahead, pubblico ministero.
    GM:  So, now, I asked you a question, and I did not get an answer. You ... [interruptions]!
    LG or CDV:  I object to that remark! That is a personal evaluation! Presidente! That is very suggestive. He is making an unacceptable conclusion. He can ask a question, but this is a personal opinion. It seems to me that she did answer. She answered for a good five minutes.
    GCM:  Sorry, but I said that we were supposed to avoid interruptions, that we weren’t supposed to interrupt when someone was speaking—
    LG or CDV:  But—
    GCM:  Wait—avvocato, excuse me, please, let’s try to avoid these moments which don’t help anybody and probably harm the person undergoing the examination because they create tension in the court—
    GM:  When I am doing the cross-examination I would like—
    GCM:  Please, pubblico ministero. This is another recommendation: let’s avoid analyses. Let’s take the answers as they come, later the right moment will come to say that from this examination, you did not obtain the answer that you expected, that the accused did not answer the questions. That is a later phase. At this moment, let’s stay with the answers that we have, even if they are not exhaustive, and return to the question, but avoiding personal evaluations of their value. Go ahead, publicco ministero, go ahead.
    GM:  I would like to—
    GCM:  Yes, yes, go ahead, return to your question. And then you can come back to it with more details.
    GM:  The central point of that interrogation was the moment when the name of Patrick emerged. You spoke of suggestions, you spoke of pressure, you spoke of being hit, I asked you to give me a precise description of who gave you the blows, you need to describe this person. Was it a woman or a man? Who asked you the questions? Who was asking you the questions? There was the interpreter, who was the person who was translating. But the exam, the interrogation, who was doing it? Apart from the people who were going in and out. You must have understood that there was a murder, and this was a police station, and the investigation was hot, and what I am asking you is, who was actually conducting the interrogation?
    GCM:  The pubblico ministero is asking you, you said that the two blows were given to me by someone whose name I don’t know. The pubblico ministero is asking you firstly if you can give a description of the person who hit you, if you saw her, and if you can give us a description. The second question—
    AK:  So, when I—the person who was conducting the interrogation—
    GCM:  That was the second question! You’re starting with the second question, that’s fine, go ahead, go ahead.
    AK:  Oh, sorry…
    GCM:  Go on, go on. The person who was conducting the interrogation…
    AK:  Well, there were lots and lots of people who were asking me questions, but the person who had started talking with me was a policewoman with long hair, chestnut brown hair, but I don’t know her. Then in the circle of people who were around me, certain people asked me questions, for example there was a man who was holding my telephone, and who was literally shoving the telephone into my face, shouting “Look at this telephone! Who is this? Who did you want to meet?” Then there were others, for instance this woman who was leading, was the same person who at one point was standing behind me, because they kept moving, they were really surrounding me and on top of me. I was on a chair, then the interpreter was also sitting on a chair, and everyone else was standing around me, so I didn’t see who gave me the first blow because it was someone behind me, but then I turned around and saw that woman, and she gave me another blow to the head.
    GCM:  This was the same woman with the long hair?
    AK:  Yes, the same one.
    GCM:  All right. Are you finished? Tell me if you have something to add.
    AK:  Well, I already answered.
    GCM:  Fine, fine, all right. Go ahead, pubblico ministero.
    GM:  I’ll go on with the questions. In the minutes it mentions three people, plus the interpreter. Now, you first said that they suggested things to you. What exactly do you mean by the word “suggestion”, because from your description, I don’t see any suggestion. I mean, what is meant by the Italian word “suggerimento”, I don’t find it.
    GCM:  [quelling them] Excuse me, excuse me, please, please, excuse me, excuse me! Listen, the pubblico ministero is asking you: “suggestions”, you also mentioned words that were “put in your mouth”, versions, things to say, circumstances to describe.
    The pubblico ministero is asking two things: who made the suggestions, and what exactly were you told to say? }}
    AK:  All right. It seems to me that the thoughts of the people standing around me, there were so many people, and they suggested things to me in the sense that they would ask questions like: “Okay, you met someone!” No, I didn’t. They would say “Yes you did, because we have this telephone here, that says that you wanted to meet someone. You wanted to meet him.” No, I don’t remember that. “Well, you’d better remember, because if not we’ll put you in prison for 30 years.” But I don’t remember! “Maybe it was him that you met? Or him? You can’t remember?” It was this kind of suggestion.
    GCM:  When you say they said “Maybe you met him?”, did they specify names?
    AK:  Well, the important fact was this message to Patrick, they were very excited about it. So they wanted to know if I had received a message from him—
    [Interruptions]
    GCM:  Please, please!
    [Interruptions, multiple voices]
    CDV:  It’s not possible to go on this way! [Mignini yells something at dalla Vedova]
    GCM:  Please, please, excuse me, excuse me!
    ??:  I’m going to ask to suspend the audience! I demand a suspension of five minutes!
    GCM:  Excuse me, excuse me! Please!
    CDV:  Viva Dio, Presidente!
    GM:  Presidente, I’m trying to do a cross-examination, and I must have the conditions that allow me to do it! The defense keeps interrupting.
    ??:  That’s true!
    GCM:  Excuse me, excuse me, please—
    GM:  We’re asking for a suspension!
    GCM:  Just a moment, excuse me. I’ve heard all the demands and suggestions, now the Court will decide. So.
    [Several moments of silence, during which Amanda murmurs in a very tiny voice: “Scusa.”]
    GCM:  I want to point out that the accused offers answers to every question. She could always refuse to respond. She is answering, and that doesn’t mean she has to be asked about the same circumstances again and again. She is not a witness. The accused goes under different rules. We have to accept the answers—
    ??:  But—
    GCM:  Please, please! We have to accept the answers given by the accused. She can stop answering at any time. At some point we simply have to move on to different questions. One circumstance is being asked again, the accused answered. The regularly, the tranquillity, the rituality of the court, of the process, has to be respected. The pubblico ministero was asking about suggestions. [To Amanda] If you want a suspension we can do it right away.
    AK:  No, I’m fine.
    GCM:  So the pubblico ministero was asking about the suggestions. All right?
    AK:  Sure.
    GCM:  So, you were the one who gave the first indication, introducing this generic pronoun “him”? This “him”, did they say who it could be?
    AK:  It was because of the fact that they were saying that I apparently had met someone and they said this because of the message, and they were saying “Are you sure you don’t remember meeting THIS person, because you wrote this message.”
    GCM:  In this message, was there the name of the person it was meant for?
    AK:  No, it was the message I wrote to my boss. The one that said “Va bene. Ci vediamo piu tardi. Buona serata.”
    GCM:  But it could have been a message to anyone. Could you see from the message to whom it was written?
    AK:  Actually, I don’t know if that information is in the telephone. But I told them that I had received a message from Patrick, and they looked for it in the telephone, but they couldn’t find it, but they found the one I sent to him.
    GCM:  I also wanted to ask you for the pubblico ministero, you wrote this message in Italian. I wanted to ask you, since you are an English speaker, what do you do when you wrote in Italian? Do you first think in English, and then translate into Italian, or do you manage to think directly in Italian?
    AK:  No, at that time, I first thought in English, then I would translate, and then write.
    GCM:  So that clarifies that phrase. Go ahead, pubblico ministero, but I think we’ve exhausted the question.
    GM:  Yes, yes. I just wanted one concept to be clear: that in the Italian language, “suggerire” means “indicate”, someone who “suggests” a name actually says the name and the other person adopts it. That is what “suggerimento” is, and I…so my question is, did the police first pronounce the name of Patrick, or was it you? And was it pronounced after having seen the message in the phone, or just like that, before that message was seen?
    ??:  Objection! Objection!
    GM:  On page 95, I read—
    CDV:  Before the objection, what was the question?
    GM:  The question was: the question that was objected was about the term “suggerimento”. Because I interpret that word this way: the police say “Was it Patrick?” and she confirms that it was Patrick. This is suggestion in the Italian language.
    GCM:  Excuse me, please, excuse me. Let’s return to the accused. What was the suggestion, because I thought I had understood that the suggestion consisted in the fact that Patrick Lumumba, to whom the message was addressed, had been identified, they talked about “him, him, him”. In what terms exactly did they talk about this “him”? What did they say to you?
    AK:  So, there was this thing that they wanted a name. And the message—
    GCM:  You mean, they wanted a name relative to what?
    AK:  To the person I had written to, precisely. And they told me that I knew, and that I didn’t want to tell. And that I didn’t want to tell because I didn’t remember or because I was a stupid liar. Then they kept on about this message, that they were literally shoving in my face saying “Look what a stupid liar you are, you don’t even remember this!” At first, I didn’t even remember writing that message. But there was this interpreter next to me who kept saying “Maybe you don’t remember, maybe you don’t remember, but try,” and other people were saying “Try, try, try to remember that you met someone, and I was there hearing “Remember, remember, remember,” and then there was this person behind me who—it’s not that she actually really physically hurt me, but she frightened me…
    GCM:  “Remember!” is not a suggestion. It is a strong solicitation of your memory. Suggestion is rather…
    AK:  But it was always “Remember” following this same idea, that…
    GCM:  But they didn’t literally say that it was him!
    AK:  No. They didn’t say it was him, but they said “We know who it is, we know who it is. You were with him, you met him.”
    GCM:  So, these were the suggestions.
    AK:  Yes.
    GCM:  Go ahead, pubblico ministero.
    GM:  I object here on the dynamics, because here there’s a contrast…well… per carita—[Brief interruption from GCM]—From Amanda’s answer, it emerges that there was this cell phone and this message and this “Answer, answer,” whereas in the minutes of the Dec 17 interrogation, page 95, we find: The police could not have suggested—[Arguing, everyone speaking, Maresca, Pacelli etc., some saying that they need to know the exact page, it’s different in their version. ]
    GCM:  While the pubblico ministero is talking, let’s avoid interrupting him. It’s true that the pages are different, but still, if you can’t find the page, ask for a moment’s pause, don’t interrupt the reading.
    GM:  So, on line number one, two, three, four…
    GCM:  Pubblico ministero, don’t worry about the lines, please read.
    GM:  [reading] She said: “I accused Patrick and no one else because they were continually talking about Patrick.” Suggesting, to use Amanda’s words. I asked: “The police, the police could not suggest? And the interpreter, was she shouting the name of Patrick? Sorry, but what was the police saying?” Knox: “The police were saying, ‘We know that you were in the house. We know you were in the house.’ And one moment before I said Patrick’s name, someone was showing me the message I had sent him.” This is the objection. There is a precise moment. The police were showing her the message, they didn’t know who it was—
    GCM:  Excuse me, excuse me pubblico ministero [talking at the same time] excuse me, excuse me, the objection consists in the following: [to Amanda], when there are contrasts or a lack of coincidence with previous statements, be careful to explain them.
    AK:  Okay.
    GCM:  Do you confirm the declarations that the pubblico ministero read out?
    AK:  I explained it better now.
    GCM:  You explained it better now. All right pubblico ministero. Go ahead.
    GM:  So, let’s move forward.
    AK:  Okay.
    GM:  Now, what happened next? You, confronted with the message, gave the name of Patrick. What did you say?
    AK:  Well, first I started to cry. And all the policemen, together, started saying to me, you have to tell us why, what happened? They wanted all these details that I couldn’t tell them, because in the end, what happened was this: when I said the name of “Patrick”, I suddenly started imagining a kind of scene, but always using this idea: images that didn’t agree, that maybe could give some kind of explanation of the situation. I saw Patrick’s face, then Piazza Grimana, then my house, then something green that they told me might be the sofa. Then, following this, they wanted details, they wanted to know everything I had done. But I didn’t know how to say. So they started talking to me, saying, “Okay, so you went out of the house, okay, fine, so you met Patrick, where did you meet Patrick?” I don’t know, maybe in Piazza Grimana, maybe near it. Because I had this image of Piazza Grimana. “Okay, fine, so you went with him to your house. Okay, fine. How did you open the door?” Well, with my key. “So you opened the house”. Okay, yes. “And what did you do then?” I don’t know. “But was she already there?” I don’t know. “Did she arrive or was she already there?” Okay. “Who was there with you?” I don’t know. “Was it just Patrick, or was Raffaele there too?” I don’t know. It was the same when the pubblico ministero came, because he asked me: “Excuse me, I don’t understand. Did you hear the sound of a scream?” No. “But how could you not have heard the scream?”. I don’t know, maybe my ears were covered. I kept on and on saying I don’t know, maybe, imagining…
    GCM:  [Stopping her gently] Okay, okay. Go ahead, pubblico ministero.
    CDV?:  I’d like to ask a question, I’d like to make an objection about—
    GCM?:  All right, so—
    GM:  Is it a question or an objection? [crossing, arguing voices]
    GCM:  Please, no interruptions.
    CDV?:  [stronger] I said, I am asking a question and making an objection—
    GCM:  But, excuse me, let’s stay with essentials. Let’s hear what the pubblico ministero has to say, and then we’ll see. That’s a premise.
    GM:  I appeal to the court that this is making the examination impossible.
    GCM:  Please, please, sorry. Go ahead.
    GM:  I am trying to understand. In the interro—[he breaks off in mid-word, I think dalla Vedova must have stood up again.]
    GCM:  But it’s not possible to hinder things this way, avvocato. Excuse me. Why?
    CDV?:  [hard to hear because he’s speaking at the same time as GCM] The defense would like to formally ask for a break [?]
    GCM:  We haven’t even heard what he is trying to say yet. You can’t make preventive objections! I’m sorry, avvocato.
    CDV?:  I’m not making an objection—
    GCM:  [really trying to stop him but not succeeding, CDV goes on talking at the same time] Please, please avvocato, no no no no, the pubblico ministero is speaking. [GM also says some words] Excuse me, excuse me.
    CDV?:  The suggestions of the PM before asking the question are inopportune, because he is suggesting and making suggestive…
    GCM:  Please, please, excuse me, excuse me! [He really, really needs a gavel to bang!]
    GM:  [some words]
    GCM:  Please, pubblico ministero! We are creating useless moments—
    GM:  [some words]
    GCM:  [much louder] Please, pubblico ministero! Please! Now, excuse me.
    GM or CDV:  Please explain this concept to me.
    GCM:  Please, please! [He finally obtains silence] I understand that when these interruption happens, the tone gets a bit louder, but that is not helpful. [Interruption] Please, please—but we are getting the impression that the objections are preventive. So while the pubblico ministero is speaking, which he has every right to do in this phase, and the defense already had their chance to do it, and they weren’t interrupted yesterday, so we ask for equal treatment today, at the present moment of the examination of the accused. And the tone should always remain cordial without giving the impression of a—
    CDV:  Yes, yes, no, no. But it’s just that, I am asking that—
    GCM:  Please, avvocato. There’s no reason. We are trying to reconcile the interests of all parties, we are gathering circumstances on which the different parties are called to make analyses and the Court to decide. This will be helpful for everyone. Go ahead.
    GM:  The question is this: You say, you just told me a little while ago, that… the police—I’m trying to—well, I have to give a little introduction so she understands my question. You said “they found this message and they asked me whom it was to, if it was true or not true.” And you answered. Then the police obviously goes forward with their questions. “So, tell us”. And you…you just told me, I can’t read it, obviously I don’t have the transcription right here, but, I might be making a mistake, I don’t know, but you were saying that you remembered Piazza Grimana. Did you really say that?
    AK:  Yes.
    GCM:  Please, please, excuse me, there, now what the accused is saying is: “On the basis of these elements, I tried to reconstruct a scene that could be verified.” In these terms, not because she… She mentally elaborated, with her imagination: this is what I understood, how the scene could be realized, containing those elements that had come up.
    AK:  Certainly.
    GCM:  But she wasn’t speaking of an effective memory of circumstances that had effectively occurred in her perception. That is the meaning of the response of the accused.
    AK:  Certo.
    GM:  But you said that you remembered Piazza Grimana.
    AK:  I had an image of Piazza Grimana.
    GM:  An image of Piazza Grimana, that’s right. Now listen, in the interrogation, page 95, the same interrogation, but the same expression turns up in other places, I can give references if necessary…

    [Start of 6:54 minute video segment] ...I asked this question: Why did you throw out an accusation of this type? In the confrontations with Mr. Lumumba (I was continuing and you answered right away): “I was trying, I had the possibility of explaining the message in my phone. He had told me not to come to work.” Perfectly normal things. So, faced with a perfectly normal circumstance, “My boss texted me to tell me not to come to work and I answered him,” you could have just stated that. End of response. Instead, faced with the message, and the questions of the police, you threw out this accusation. So I am asking you, why start accusing him when you could calmly explain the exchange of messages? Why did you think those things could be true? }}
    AK:  I was confused.
    GM:  You have repeated that many times. But what does it mean? Either something is true, or it isn’t true. Right now, for instance, you’re here at the audience, you couldn’t be somewhere else. You couldn’t say “I am at the station.” You are right here, right now.
    AK:  Certainly. [Some noise]
    GCM:  The question is clear.
    AK:  Can I answer?
    GCM:  [quelling noise] Excuse me, excuse me! Please, go ahead.
    AK:  My confusion was because firstly, I couldn’t understand why the police was treating me this way, and then because when I explained that I had spent the whole time with Raffaele, they said “No, you’re a liar”. It was always this thing that either I didn’t remember or I was lying. The fact that I kept on and on repeating my story and they kept saying “No, you’re going to prison right now if you don’t tell the truth,” and I said “But I’ve told the truth,” “No, you’re a liar, now you’re going to prison for 30 years because either you’re a stupid liar or you forgot. And if it’s because you forgot, then you’d better remember what happened for real, right now.” This is why I was confused. Because I didn’t understand. I didn’t understand why. I didn’t understand anything any more. I was so scared and impressed by all this that at some point I thought What the heck, maybe they’re right, maybe I forgot.
    GM:  So, and then, you accused Lumumba of murder. This is the conclusion.

    GM:  I wanted to spend a moment on one last question, maybe the last but I don’t know, about the morning of the 6th.
    AK:  Okay.
    GM:  There’s another thing I didn’t understand. You said pressure was put on you, and there were suggestions, you explained today exactly what those consisted in, to say the name of Patrick and to accuse Patrick. Then you wrote a memorandum in which you confirm everything. And you weren’t under pressure right then. Why didn’t you just say: “I falsely accused someone.” Someone who was in prison, who was put in prison, maybe for a long time. Can you explain this to me?
    AK:  Certo.
    CDV?:  Can I make an objection? Very, very calmly and without animosity?
    GCM:  Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you [for the calm, no doubt]. Thank you.
    CDV?:  It seems to me that the pubblico ministero, in presenting his questions, always makes references which go as far as actually suggesting the answers, and also—
    GM:  Well it is a cross-examination.
    GCM:  Please, please let’s avoid interruptions and let each person express what he has to say. Go ahead, avvocato.
    CDV?:  In the question he just asked, he mentions the memorandum and says it confirms. Now, this might be a specific question, but it should not be an assertion on the part of the pubblico ministero, followed by another question. If we look in the minutes, we find a series of unilateral declarations which all go to show what interests the pubblico ministero. To my mind, this mentality goes against our way of examining the accused. I just want to make this clear.
    GCM:  All right, taking into account these remarks, the pubblico ministero’s question remains. It could be rephrased like this: during the 5th and the 6th, you said there were pressures, and the name of Patrick Lumumba emerged as also being involved in these events. But as the pubblico ministero notes, you then you wrote the memorandum spontaneously. We heard that you yourself asked for paper to be able to write it.
    AK:  Certainly.
    GCM:  And writing with this liberty, you even referred to it as a gift, these elements which had already emerged, you reasserted them, and this involvement of Patrick Lumumba. What the pubblico ministero is asking is: how did you—this question was already asked yesterday—in these different circumstances, you weren’t in the room any more, there wasn’t any pressure, why didn’t the truth somehow get stabilized?
    AK:  Yes, yes. In fact, what happened is that I had literally been led to believe that somehow, I had forgotten something real, and so with this idea that I must have forgotten, I was practically convinced myself that I really had forgotten. And these images, that I was actually forcing myself to imagine, were really lost memories. So, I wasn’t sure if those images were reality or not, but explaining this to the police, they didn’t want to listen to the fact that I wasn’t sure. They treated me as though I had now remembered everything and everything was fine and I could now make a declaration in the tribunal against someone, to accuse someone. I didn’t feel sure about that. I didn’t feel—
    GCM:  Excuse me, but in the memorandum, do you remember what you wrote about Patrick? Because maybe it wasn’t precise…
    GM:  [Interrupting] I want—I want—I want to contest this point. Two points in the memorandum. If I’m not mistaken, you weren’t a witness right then. You had been the object of an arrest warrant. You had been arrested. You know the difference between a suspect and a witness. You weren’t a witness. Not any longer. So in the memorandum—
    CDV?:  One moment—[hard to hear] Does she know the difference?
    GM:  Can I continue? Sorry, avvocato, but I’m asking questions! Can I continue? He’s continually—
    GCM:  Sorry, sorry, go ahead.
    GM:  This is impossible!
    GCM:  Please, pubblico ministero, go ahead, go ahead.
    GM:  I am interrogating. I am interrogating. Now I’m distracted. Now, the difference between a suspect and a witness—a person informed of the facts. You said: “I made these declarations so that I could leave, so I could be—” but instead, you were arrested. And you wrote the memorandum after you had been arrested. And you wrote two sentences: I’ll read them. “I stand by my statements that I made last night about events that events that could have taken place in my home with Patrick.” [In Italian: “I confirm…”] Do you know what the word “confirm” means in Italian? “In the flashbacks that I’m having, I see Patrick as the murderer.” There wasn’t any policeman with you when you wrote that. No one. You wrote that in complete liberty. Do you know how to explain to me why? And this is even more decisive than what you said some hours earlier. Can you explain this?
    AK:  I couldn’t even explain to myself why I had these images in my head, because I didn’t know if they were memories or not. And I want to say that if I made these declarations, that they asked me to sign and everything, I did it, but I wanted in the memorandum to explain my doubt, this fact that I wasn’t sure about it, because no one ever wanted to listen when I said listen, I don’t know.
    GCM?:  Effectively the memorandum was correcting what had been said, and these doubts arose.
    GM:  Do you have lapses of memory? At that time did you ever have lapses of memory?
    AK:  Did I have what?
    GM:  Lapses of memory.
    AK:  Oh, lapses of memory.
    GM:  Lapses of memory. Moments where you couldn’t remember things that you had done. “What did I do yesterday? I don’t know.”
    AK:  [Laughing] I’ve had that problem all my life.
    GM:  What?
    AK:  I’ve had that problem all my life. I can’t remember where I put my keys.
    GM:  So it happened to you at other times? Explain it to me. You previously mixed up things, didn’t know whether you had dreamed things or they were real?
    AK:  No, not that part about the imagination! I would forget for example what I ate yesterday for dinner, yes, that happened to me, but not to actually imagine things.
    GM:  To imagine something that hadn’t really happened, that never happened to you.
    AK:  No. I never had that problem, but then, I had never been interrogated like that before.
    GM:  Okay, so when you had this flashback, you saw Patrick as the murderer. What was this flashback?
    AK:  The flashback consisted in this image of Patrick’s actual face, not that I imagined an actual act, I imagined his face. Then I had this image of Piazza Grimana, then an image of Patrick’s face, then I always had this idea that they wanted to say: these images explain the fact that you met him, and you brought him home, and maybe you heard something and covered your ears, and it was always like this, not that I actually imagined having seen Meredith’s death. It was these images that came by themselves, to explain…
    GM:  I see. All right. I take note of what you’re saying. Now, let’s talk about your memorandum from the 7th, still written in total autonomy, without anyone around you. You wrote: “I didn’t lie when I said that I thought the murderer was Patrick. At that moment I was very stressed and I really did think that it was Patrick.” Then you add “But now I know that I can’t know who the murderer is, because I remember that I didn’t go home.” Can you explain these concept to me?
    AK:  Yes, because I was convinced that I somehow could have forgotten. So in that moment, I—
    GM:  So what you had said might have actually been true?
    AK:  Yes.
    AK:  Yes, it could have been true, but at that moment. But then, when I was able to rethink the facts, it became clearer and clearer that it didn’t make sense, that it was absolutely ridiculous that I could have thought that or imagined it.
    GM:  But didn’t you feel the need to intervene to get an innocent person out of prison? You didn’t feel the need?
    AK:  But the police had already called me a liar, and I didn’t feel they were listening to me. Also because in the Questura—
    GM:  But you were in prison!
    AK:  But in the Questura, I had already told them: Look, I’m not sure about this, and they didn’t want to hear that. They didn’t want to listen, because they said to me “No, you’ll remember it later. You just need a little time to really remember these facts.” I told them no, I don’t think it’s like that, but they didn’t want to listen.
    GM:  They didn’t believe you. But you, once you said that you remembered, [snaps fingers?] you could have just made a declaration or sent me another memorandum saying “No, I didn’t say the truth. Patrick is innocent.”
    GCM:  Excuse me, we already had explanations about this.


    The Amanda Knox Calunnia Trial In Florence: What It Is All About #1

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Above: Florence Prosecutor Dr Leopoldo Di Girolamo. Quick route to Comments here.

    1. Arrangements For Knox Trial In Florence

    Knox’s second trial for aggravated calunnia will take place later this week and early next week in Florence.

    For the record the sentence for a repeat calunnia offense can be six years and the statute of limitations cuts in at 11 year and three months which in this case will be late in AD 2020.

    The real drama if any will be next week, when witnesses are to be called starting on Monday. We should have some court reporting from Main Poster Machiavelli. There is the possibility of a closed court and a verdict on Tuesday.

    We believe the judge will be Dr Giampaolo Boninsegna. We presume that Knox will not attend (perhaps a weak move, perhaps not).

    Two prosecutors have developed the case which was sparked by complaints from investigators in the Perugia central police station. They are Dr Leopoldo Di Girolamo (image above) and Dr Angela Pietroiusti. We could see either or both of them in action.

    It appears now that knox’s lawyers will again be Ghirga and Dalla Vedova, who some lawyers criticise for dropping her in it at trial with an ill-judged stint on the stand after 20 months of trying to stop Knox dropping herself in it.

    2. Why Knox Was On The Stand in 2009

    Knox’s team primarily primarily intended that Knox’s two days on the stand should serve to explain why she framed Patrick and then allowed him to languish in prison.

    Both publicly to the media and at the Micheli hearings in late 2008 Knox’s lawyers had denied she was ill-treated or forced into a “confession”. So why was Knox put on the stand?

    Probably in part because Knox absolutely insisted on it, given her considerable track record of written and spoken explanations and her interrogation in December 2007 by Dr Mignini. Each time a fail, but perhaps she had in mind the movie Groundhog Day.

    And probably in part because the prosecution portion of the trial had been pretty damning. There had been stacks of evidence and numerous witnesses whose testimony fitted together pretty seamlessly.

    Contrast this with the defense portion of the trial, from late summer onward, which was often awkward and hesitant, often did not fill complete court days, and really gained no ground back.

    3. The Knox Defense Team’s Uphill Task Here

    Bizarrely, Knox AND her lawyers AND her family had already sat through days and days of testimony earlier in the trial from various investigators who were present on 5-6 November when Knox explosively fingered Patrick.

    Knox’s testimony was like night and day compared to that, as if none of that previous testimony had even happened. This was probably unique in Italian legal history and quite possibly in US legal history also.

    Our ongoing Interrogation Hoax series, still far from complete, which has included a lot of new translation, showed what a very consistent picture of events on 5-6 Nov all these witnesses testified to.

    Testimony led by Knox’s team (see below) was quite extensive but it tellingly wandered far from the main point and was very pussyfooting about 5-6 Nov even though Knox was not under oath and prosecutor cross-examination was circumscribed. It really won no points for Knox at all and didnt avoid her serving three years.

    To consider the target testimony below against the picture the court had already developed, please read at least Part One of the series.

    Look below as you read for all the numerous claims by Knox of illegal pressure and illegal abuse and illegal insistence of scenarios and names given to her by the cops.

    According to the prior testimony of all those officers Knox is impugning, none of these claims of illegality seemingly designed to hurt careers had any truth at all to them.

    4. Day One of Knox’s Testimony

    Day two’s testimony will follow in our next post. Excerpts in both posts are from the full transcript on the Case Wiki, and all transcription and translation into English (a massive task) was by the PMF Team.

    Relevant Questions By Lumumba Lawyer Pacelli

    Here AK is Knox, CP is Pacelli, and GCM is Judge Massei.

    CP:  Listen, let’s get to the evening of November 1. On the evening of November 1, 2007, did you have an appointment with Patrick near the basketball court?
    GCM:  (Interrupting the interpreter who is putting this question into English for Amanda) Excuse me, excuse me. Also for the interpreter, also the English translation, everything is for everyone, this is not a dialogue between two people.
    CP:  I’ll ask a simpler question, Presidente.
    GCM:  No no, we heard it. Please, go ahead. (The interpreter translates the question)
    AK:  No, I didn’t.
    CP:  So, on the evening of November 1, you didn’t meet Patrick?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  You didn’t meet him at the basketball court?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  Then why did you say you met him at the basketball court during your interrogation of November 6, 2007, at 1:45 in the morning in front of the judicial police?
    AK:  It was a complicated situation. I can explain it if you want me to go into it.
    CP:  Yes, yes, later.
    AK:  Okay.
    CP:  You had the keys of the apartment in via della Pergola?
    GCM:  Excuse me, avvocato, she was saying something.
    CP:  Sorry. Please, go ahead.
    GCM:  She was adding something. Please go ahead. You can answer…
    AK:  Okay.
    GCM:  ...with all the time and the precision that you need.
    AK:  Okay.
    GCM:  (addressing the interpreter) Tell her that if she wants to add something, as it seemed she did, she can do it, and we will listen. (Interpreter puts this into English)
    AK:  Yes. Um, the interrogation process was very long and difficult. Arriving in the police office, I didn’t expect to be interrogated at all. When I got there, I was sitting on my own doing my homework, when a couple of police officers came to sit with me. They began to ask me the same questions that they had been asking me days…all these days ever since it happened. For instance, who could I imagine could be the person who killed Meredith, and I said I still didn’t know, and so what they did is, they brought me into another interrogation room. Once I was in there, they asked me to repeat everything that I had said before, for instance what I did that night. They asked me to see my phone, which I gave to them, and they were looking through my phone, which is when they found the message. When they found the message, they asked me if I had sent a message back, which I didn’t remember doing. That’s when they started being very hard with me. They called me a stupid liar, and they said that I was trying to protect someone. (Sigh) So I was there, and they told me that I was trying to protect someone, but I wasn’t trying to protect anyone, and so I didn’t know how to respond to them. They said that I had left Raffaele’s house, which wasn’t true, which I denied, but they continued to call me a stupid liar. They were putting this telephone in front of my face going “Look, look, your message, you were going to meet someone”. And when I denied that, they continued to call me a stupid liar. And then, from that point on, I was very very scared, because they were treating me so badly and I didn’t understand why. (Sigh) While I was there, there was an interpreter who explained to me an experience of hers, where she had gone through a traumatic experience that she could not remember at all, and she suggested that I was traumatized, and that I couldn’t remember the truth. This at first seemed ridiculous to me, because I remembered being at Raffaele’s house. For sure. I remembered doing things at Raffaele’s house. I checked my e-mails before, then we watched a movie. We had eaten dinner together, we had talked together, and during that time I hadn’t left his apartment. But they were insisting upon putting everything into hourly segments, and since I never look at the clock, I wasn’t able to tell them what time exactly I did everything. They insisted that I had left the apartment for a certain period of time to meet somebody, which for me I didn’t remember, but the interpreter said I probably had forgotten. (Sigh)...
    AK:  So what ended up happening was, that they told me to try to remember what I apparently, according to them, had forgotten. Under the amount of pressure of everyone yelling at me, and having them tell me that they were going to put me in prison for protecting somebody, that I wasn’t protecting, that I couldn’t remember, I tried to imagine that in some way they must have had…it was very difficult, because when I was there, at a certain point, I just…I couldn’t understand (Start of 15:19 minute video segment) why they were so sure that I was the one who knew everything. And so, in my confusion, I started to imagine that maybe I was traumatized, like what they said. They continued to say that I had met somebody, and they continued to put so much emphasis on this message that I had received from Patrick, and so I almost was convinced that I had met him. But I was confused.
    CP:  But—did you really meet him at the basketball court?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  Then how could you be convinced that you had met him?
    AK:  I was confused.
    CP:  When you said this, how many police inspectors were present?
    AK:  I don’t know how many were police officers or inspectors, but there were lots.
    CP:  Listen, but you were accompanied to the bar, they offered you a cappuccino over the night? They assisted you through the night?
    AK:  I was offered tea after I had made declarations.
    CP:  So they treated you well.
    AK:  No!

    On November 6, 2007, at 1:45, you said that you went to the house in via della Pergola with Patrick. Did you go?
    AK:  The declarations were taken against my will. And so, everything that I said, was said in confusion and under pressure, and, because they were suggested by the public minister.
    CP:  Excuse me, but at 1:45, the pubblico ministero was not there, there was only the judicial police.
    AK:  Ha. They also were pressuring me.
    CP:  I understand, but were they telling you to say that, too, or did you say it of your own free will.
    AK:  They were suggesting paths of thought. They were suggesting the path of thought. They suggested the journey. So the first thing I said, “Okay, Patrick”. And then they said “Okay, where did you meet him? Did you meet him at your house? Did you meet him near your house?” “Euh, near my house, I don’t know.” Then my memories got mixed up. From other days, I remembered having met Patrick, at Piazza Grimana, so I said “Okay, Piazza Grimana.” It wasn’t as if I said “Oh, this is how it went.”

    GCM:  Please go ahead, avvocato.
    CP: —which is the object of both declarations, the one at 1:45 and the one at 5:45. (Crossing voices.)
    GCM:  It was about facts, though?
    CP:  All right, I’ll reformulate the question. Meredith, before she was killed, did she have sex?
    AK:  I don’t know.
    CP:  Then why, in the interrogation of Nov 6 at 1:45, did you say that Meredith had sex before she died?
    AK:  Under pressure, I imagined lots of different things, also because during the days that I was being questioned by the police, they suggested to me that she had been raped.
    CP:  And the police suggested to you to say this?
    AK:  Yes.
    CP:  And to make you say this, did they hit you?
    AK:  Yes.

    CP:  When you wrote the memorandum, were you hit by police?
    AK:  When?
    CP:  When you wrote the memorandum. Were you hit by police?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  Mistreated?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  Did the police suggest the contents?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  You gave it to them freely?
    AK:  Yes.
    CP:  Voluntarily?
    AK:  Yes.
    CP:  Listen, in this memorandum, you say that you confirm the declarations you made the night before about what might have happened at your house with Patrick. Why did you freely and spontaneously confirm these declarations?
    AK:  Because I was no longer sure what was my imagination and what was real. So I wanted to say that I was confused, and that I couldn’t know. But at the same time, I knew I had signed those declarations. So I wanted to say that I knew I had made those declarations, but I was confused and not sure.
    CP:  But in fact, you were sure that Patrick was innocent?
    AK:  No, I wasn’t sure.
    CP:  Why?
    AK:  Because I was confused! I imagined that it might have happened. I was confused.

    CP:  Did you see Patrick on November 1, yes or no?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  Did you meet him?
    AK:  No.
    CP:  Then why did you say that you saw him, met him, and walked home with him?
    AK:  Because the police and the interpreter told me that maybe I just wasn’t remembering these things, but I had to try to remember. It didn’t matter if I thought I was imagining it. I would remember it with time. So, the fact that I actually remembered something else was confusing to me. Because I remembered one thing, but under the pressure of the police, I forced myself to imagine another. I was confused. I was trying to explain this confusion, because they were making me accuse someone I didn’t want to accuse.

    Relevant Questions By Knox Lawyer Ghirga

    CP:  I’ll repeat my question. On the 10th, you said to your mother: “It’s my fault that he’s here. I feel terrible.” Why didn’t you say this to the pubblico ministero?
    LG?:  I object! He’s already asked this question. And it was answered.
    GCM:  Yes. It was already asked.
    CP:  Yes, but she hasn’t answered!
    LG?:  Yes, she HAS answered!
    CP:  Can she answer? I didn’t understand.
    GCM:  Excuse me, excuse me. Please.
    CP:  I didn’t understand her answer, President. Can you explain?
    GCM:  So, the question was asked and has been asked again because—
    CP:  (speaking over him) Because I didn’t understand the answer!
    GCM: —the defense lawyer has not understood why—in what regards the police, the accused has said that when they came to bring her paper, they said “Oh, another truth,” so her relations with them were such that she did not feel that she could tell them this circumstance. It remains to ask why she did not tell the pubblico ministero. This is what the lawyer is asking. For what concerns the police, we have heard her position and her answer. We’re talking about the period after the 10th of November, when this conversation with the mother was recorded. In what concerns the pubblico ministero, the lawyer is asking you why you didn’t feel the necessity, like with your mother, of telling him that Patrick Lumumba, as far as you were concerned, had nothing to do with all this.
    AK:  We are talking about when I was in front of the judge?
    GCM:  After the 10th of November.
    AK:  Frankly, I didn’t have good relations with the police after that period, nor with the pubblico ministero, because he also had suggested declarations that got written down in the declarations. I didn’t know where to turn. I felt better talking to my defense than to the police.

    LG:  All right, I’ve exhausted this topic. Now, I said we were just coming to the evening when you were called in, or rather when Raffaele was called in to the Questura on Nov 5. Where did you come from? Were you having dinner somewhere? Do you remember?
    AK:  We were at the apartment of a friend of his, who lived near his house, and we were having dinner with them, trying, I don’t know, to feel a bit of normality, when Raffaele was called by the police.
    LG:  Okay. So you went with him in the car, and you came in and they settled you somewhere, and later you were heard.
    AK:  Yes. What happened is that they weren’t expecting me to come. I went somewhere a bit outside near the elevator, and I had taken my homework with me, so I started to do my homework, and then I needed to do some “stretching”, so I did some “stretching”, and that’s when one policeman said something about my flexibility. A comment.
    LG:  Okay. Then you were interrogated, let’s say interrogated, it was just for information. So you were interrogated.
    AK:  Mm.
    LG:  During the interrogation, there were several people in the room, did someone come who was involved in Raffaele Sollecito’s interrogation? He was being interrogated in one place, you in another.
    AK:  So, there were lots and lots of people who came in and went out, and after one had come in and gone out, another policewoman told me that Raffaele said that I went out of the apartment—at least, Raffaele apparently said that I (stammering) had gone out of his house.
    LG:  Okay. And the episode of the text message came later? After this person came in and said that? You don’t remember?
    AK:  Yes, yes. I think it happened after they told me that.
    LG:  Now what interests me is that you should be precise about the term “hit”, because being hit is something…was it a cuff on the head, two cuffs on the head? How precise can you be about this “hitting”?
    AK:  So, during the interrogation, people were standing all around me, in front of me, behind me, one person was screaming at me from here, another person was shouting “No no no, maybe you just don’t remember” from over there, other people were yelling other things, and a policewoman behind me did this to me (you hear the sound of her giving two very little whacks).
    LG:  Once, twice?
    AK:  Twice. The first time I did this, I turned around to her, and she did it again.
    LG:  I wanted to know this precise detail.
    AK:  Yes.
    LG:  After all that, that whole conversation, that you told us about, and you had a crying crisis, did they bring you some tea, coffee, some cakes, something? When was that exactly?
    AK:  They brought me things only after I had made some declarations. So, I was there, they were all screaming at me, I only wanted to leave because I was thinking that my mother was arriving, and I said look, can I have my telephone, because I want to call my mom. They said no, and there was this big mess with them shouting at me, threatening me, and it was only after I made declarations that they started saying “No, no, don’t worry, we’ll protect you,” and that’s how it happened.
    LG:  Then you stayed in the Questura?
    AK:  Yes.
    LG:  Then, at midday, or one o’clock, we don’t know exactly, they brought you a paper called an arrest warrant. When they served you this warrant, it must have been around twelve, one o’clock. Do you remember?
    AK:  So, all papers they brought me to sign, at that point, they were all the same to me, so I can’t even say what I had to sign, arrest warrant, declarations, whatever, because at a certain point, I just wanted to sign and go home.
    LG:  Right. But instead?
    AK:  Instead, no. After a while they told me I had to stay in the Questura, so I had to stay, and I rolled up in a fetal position to try to sleep, on a chair, and I fell asleep, then I woke up, and I was there thinking and some people were going in and out, and during this period of time, I was telling them: “Look, I am really confused, these things don’t seem like what I remember, I remember something else.” And they said “No no no no no, you just stay quiet, you will remember it all later. So just stay quiet and wait, wait, wait, because we have to check some things.” And at that point I just didn’t understand anything. I even lost my sense of time.
    LG:  And I wanted to ask you after how long they took you to prison. At some point there was a car, a police wagon that took you to prison. After how much time was that? You don’t know?
    AK:  Well, I can’t say, but what I can say is that I stayed a while in the Questura, and during that time I kept trying to explain to the police that what I had said was not certain, and they took my shoes during that time and they took some pictures, they undressed me to take the pictures, and so it seemed like a long time.
    LG:  So it was between this time and the time you went to prison that you wrote the memorial?
    AK:  Yes. I wrote it there because, I asked to do it because I was telling them “Listen, you’re not hearing me, give me a piece of paper, and I’ll write this down in English to be sure you understand what I’m saying.” But I couldn’t really say that. I just said “Look, I’ll give you a present.” (Laughs.) It was because I wasn’t really able to speak or understand then. So I wrote that, but after I wrote the first pages, I was in the middle of writing this memorandum, they suddenly said “Hurry up, hurry up, finish because we have to take you to prison.” I stayed there like…I didn’t expect to go to prison, I thought maybe I hadn’t understood. I asked the policemen, the people who were around me, there, “But Why? I haven’t done anything.” And they said “No, it’s just bureaucracy. At least that’s what I understood.
    LG:  All right Amanda, okay. Thank you. So you went to prison and spent the night. When did you write the second memorial?
    AK:  So in prison I again asked for paper, because that’s how I’m used to expressing myself, the way I succeed best, also to organize my thoughts, I needed to write them down. I needed to reorganize all my thoughts, because at that point I was still confused, I still had these images in my memory that finally I understood were a mixture of real images in my memory from other days mixed with imagination. So I needed those pieces of paper, so I could take everything and put it in order.
    LG:  All right, I’ve finished the subject of the night in the Questura. When you made your first declaration, it was without the pubblico ministero. Then he came. Can you tell us if there was some discussion about a lawyer? If you remember, and whatever you remember.
    AK:  So, before they asked me to make further declarations—I really can’t tell you what time it was, I was lost after hours and hours of the same thing—but at one point I asked if I shouldn’t have a lawyer? I thought that, well, I didn’t know, but I’ve seen things like this on television. When people do things like this they have lawyer. They told me, at least one of them told me that it would be worse for me because it would prove that I didn’t want to collaborate with the police. So they told me no.

    Amanda Knox’s first letter of Nov 9, 2007

    This letter was entered in testimony by Knox’s lawyers on the first day. It was written by Knox to her lawyers around noon on Friday, Nov., 9, three days after her arrest and one day after the Matteini Hearing. Words that are missing from the scan are shown in square brackets.

    Presumably intended to help Knox, it has now become part of her problem.

    Per I Miei Avvocati

    - Amanda Knox (Friday, Nov. 9, 2007)

    Buon giorno Signore Ghirga e Signore Vedova. I’m sorry, but I must write in english to make sure I express myself (cl)early. Please excuse my handicap. I trust you are well, though probably very busy with my case and for this I thank you. What I want to provide for you now is help, because I know my position (is) a little confusing. I want to write for you everything I know as best I can and I especially want to tell you about this so-called “confession” that the police received from me. I want to begin with this “confession” because I know it is the most confusing, and so I will begin with that night.

    The night of Monday, November 5th, 2007, and the following early morning of Tuesday, November 6th, 2007, was one of the worst experiences of my life, perhaps the worst. Around 10:30pm or 11pm Raffaele and I arrived at the police station after eating dinner at the apartment of one of Raffaele’s friends. It was Raffaele who the police called, not me, but I came with him to the Questura anyway while he was to be questioned for support, as he had done for me many times. When we arrived he was taken inside and I waited by the elevator and looked through my books while I waited. Not long aftwerward one of the police came and sat by me, wanting to talk with me, supposedly to pass the time. He didn’t tell me he was a police officer. In fact, he said I could tell him whatever I wanted because it wouldn’t matter. At the time I was frustrated and told him so. I thought it was ridiculaous that the police called us in at ridiculous hours of the night and kept us at the police station for hours on end with only vending maschine (sic) food to sustain us, especially since we (wer)e all doing our best to help the police. I had been asked twice to reenter the home of my neighbors and mine, first to witness the blood in the neighbors’ apartment and then to look through (k)nives in mine. I really feared the place. Inside my own home I broke down crying because I couldn’t stand to be inside. These were the reasons for my frustration and I told him so.

    He then wanted to discuss who I thought the murderer could be, but as I had already told them before, since I wasn’t there at my home, I couldn’t have any idea, but (deleted words) he wasn’t satisfied with my answer. Who did I think it was? How would I know? I didn’t know anyone dangerous. Soon I was joined by other police people who only wanted to “talk” but who interrogated me again with the same questions. What males had ever been in my house? Who knew Meredith? Did I have any phone numbers? I gave them all the information I could. Names, phone numbers, descriptions. But it was all giving me a headache. I had already answered these questions before and I was confused as to why the police wanted so much to talk to me. Why me? Why did they keep asking me who I thought the murderer was when I already told them I had no idea?

    And then they brought me inside, because it was “warmer”. I (asked) where Raffaele was and they told me he would be done soon (but) in the meantime they wanted to talk to me. The interrogation process started rather quickley (sic). One minute I was just (tal?)king and the next they were asking me where I was between (?):30pm and 1:30am between November (1st) and 2nd. I told them I was with my boyfriend, like I had already said. They asked me what I had done during this time period and I found that I couldn’t remember a lot. I told them (we) watched the movie Amelie together, that we ate dinner (tog)ether, that after dinner Raffaele washed the dishes and spilled water on the floor when the pipes came loose. I told them that (we) smoked hash somewhere in that time but I couldn’t remember (mo)re. They told me I was lying. They told me they knew I had (not) been with Raffaele. They told me they knew I met someone that night. They told me they had proof I was at my house that night. This really confused me. I told them I wasn’t lying and (the)y began to get angry. Stop telling lies, they told me. We know (you) were there! But this didn’t make sense. I was frightened, because I couldn’t for the life of me remember what I did during the time (the)y were asking me. What were you doing?! Where did you go?! We (kno)w you were at your house!! Who did you meet?! But this all (did)n’t make any sense. How could they have proof that I was at my (hou)se when I wasn’t? Why did they think these things? Why me? They told me Raffaele had finally told the truth and that he had no (rea)son to lie. They told me that they knew I had told Raffaele to (lie?) and I told them this wasn’t true. I had never told him any (suc)h thing. We talked about the message I received from Patrik (and) I told them yes, I received a message from Patrik, he told me (not) to go into work that night because there was no one there. I (did)n’t remember if I had sent a message back, so I said no, but they (had) taken my phone and showed me the message I forgot I sent: (ending?) with the words, “Ci vediamo. Buona serata.” They called me a (stu)pid lier. They said I was protecting someone, who was it?! (The)y stuck pieces of paper in front of me, to write down the name (of) the murder, but I didn’t know. And I still couldn’t remember (wha)t me and Raffaele had been doing at his house. I had nothing to (say?) to answer their questions and it was terrifying me. Why couldn’t (I r)emember. The interpretor told me that one time she experienced (a ho)rrible car accident and couldn’t remember what had happened (unt)il a year later. She told me perhaps I had seen something (horr)ible and I couldn’t remember. Since I couldn’t remember (wha)t I had been doing at Raffaele’s house I started to think what (...?) was true? What if I had seen something and I didn’t (rem)ember? But it didn’t make sense. I remembered being (at) Raffaele’s the whole night. But in the meantime the police were (...?) or they were going to put me in jail for (...?) (p)rotecting the killer. They told me they had already caught the killer (a)nd they just wanted me to say his name, but I knew nothing. My (m)ind was a blank slate. Now, now, now!!! They were yelling at me. One (p)olice officer hit me on the back of my head twice. My head was (s)earching for any answer. I was really confused. I thought I was at my boyfriend’s house, but what if it wasn’t true? What if I couldn’t remember? I tried and tried and tried, but I couldn’t remember anything until all of the police officers left the room except one. He (to)ld me he was the only one who could save me from spending the (n)ext 30 years in jail and I told him I couldn’t remember. I asked to see the message on my phone to see if I remembered sending that (an)d when I saw the message my mind thought of Patrik. It was all I could think of, Patrik. I imagined meeting him by the basketball (cou)rts, I imagined him in front of my house, I imagined covering my ears to stop the sound of Meredith’s screaming, and so I said (Pa)trik. I said Patrik and I regret every second of it because now I (k)now that what I have said has done someone harm that I have no idea whether he was involved or not.

    After I said his name I was hysterical. I was weeping, (s)cared of what could have happened to me. I honestly thought (t)his could have been the answer. I was so confused. They told me that they had to write all of this down but I told them I wasn’t (s)ure. So they told me just to say what I had said, that I had seen (Pat)rik. That I had heard Meredith screaming. I told them I was (c)onfused, unsure, but they weren’t interested. While they were writing my so-called “confession”, which the didn’t call it (t)o me, they asked me to say if it was okay to write certain things. I (d)dn’t explain, but just said yes or no according to what these (im)ages of Patrik were showing me, but I always told them I wasn’t (su)re, these things didn’t seem real. They asked me why he had done (thi)s and I didn’t know why. Why would anyone kill another person? I told them he must be crazy. They asked me if I feared him and I (sa)id yes. I was so confused and the idea that he would kill someone (fr)ightened me. But I had never been frightened of him before, he has (al)ways been kind to me. After all of this I was allowed to sleep, (fi)nally. The whole thing was going through my head and I felt (aw)ful, to even think I could have been involved. But the more (confu)sed I became, the more sure I was that these ideas about Patrik (w)eren’t true, but I still couldn’t remember what I had been (do)ing at my boyfriend’s house after dinner.

    I seriously started to doubt when the police told me what my boyfriend had said. (1) First, that when I received the message from (Pat)rik, that I had told him I had to leave to go to work. This I (k)new, even then, wasn’t true. I remembered and still do specifically (th)at I had told him I _didn’t_ have to work and I kissed him and (...)

    (...) said, “Yay!” (2) I also never told him to lie for me. Why would he lie? Could he have lied about me not being there too? I was especially troubled by this because even though I had thought of Patrik, I still remembered being at Raffaele’s house. I told the police of my doubts but they said not to worry, little by little, I would remember. So I waited.

    I tried writing what I could remember for the police, because I’ve always been better at thinking when I was writing. They gave me time to do this. In this message I wrote about my doubts, my questions, and what I knew to be true.

    (Deleted words) During this time I was checked out by medics (and?) had my picture taken as well as more copies of my fingerprints. They took my shoes and my phone. I wanted to go home but they told me to wait and then eventually that I was to be arrested. Then I was taken here, to the prison, in the last car of three who carried Patrik, then Raffaele, and then me to prison.

    I hope this clears up some confusion for you and I’m sorry again that it is in English. I hope you are in contact with my mother and if you are, could you please tell her I love her, that I miss her, that I’m okay, and that I hope to see her soon.

    I also just received the order of arrest and it says I must remain here in prison for one year. I’m assuming this means only if they can prove I did it or not. So I’m not sad, I just have to wait until they prove I’m not guilty, and that I wasn’t there.

    I want to write another message for you which describes my version of events that at this time I remember very well. This I will do on a different piece of paper and a little later because I’m very tired.

    Good luck and thanks,
    Amanda Knox
    quasi mezzogiorno
    Venerdi, Novembre 9, 2007


    Part 2 (Day Two) in our next post.


    Tuesday, August 11, 2015

    Problems With Fred Davies #2: His Claims On Knives, Wounds And Stains Also Highly Mislead

    Posted by James Raper



    Several of the numerous scientific witnesses; some evidence was behind closed doors

    Overview Of This Post

    Remember that Amanda Knox, a felon for life, served three years for framing Patrick for murder.

    In my previous post I dismissed the claim which the British barrister FG (Fred) Davies pervasively made in Parts 1 to 20 of his mammoth series in Criminal Law and Justice Weekly that it was actually Guede and his team who had somehow framed Knox and Sollecito for a crime he alone committed and left all of Italian law enforcement bamboozled.

    I now have Parts 21 to 26 as well, all of the series, and I wish to examine one more large area of cherrypicked facts and misinterpretations, along with Davies’s final conclusion.

    First, Fred Davies’s Final Scenario

    As anticipated,  Davies concludes that Knox and Sollecito should only have been convicted of the charge of simulating a burglary. He presents his own synopsis of what happened on the night of the murder which has both Knox and Guede present at the cottage for the murder, but not Sollecito.

    Davies says it is Guede who sexually assaults and stabs Meredith. Knox, unaware of what was going to happen is horrified and scared out of her wits, retreating to her bedroom and locking herself in.

    Davies says Guede flees, ignoring or unable to do anything about the fact there is/was a witness to his horrific crime. When it’s safe to do so Knox emerges and meets up with Sollecito.

    Davies says that Knox, fearing that if she went to the police she would only end up being accused of involvement in the murder, persuades Sollecito to be her alibi, and to stage the scene to point to a burglar, and Sollecito, being the Honour Bound sort of chap he is, agrees to go along with this. Once they both embark on this course of action there us no turning back.

    I trust that you are all duly intrigued with Davies’s scenario and panting to learn how and why he arrives at it. Unfortunately this will have to wait until another day if it is to be from me.

    He has, after all, taken 26 Chapters in half a year to get to this point and I am not yet ready to deal with them comprehensively. Others here may contribute posts and discuss implications with the Criminal Law editor.

    Fred Davies On Knife Or Knives

    Whilst I guess most comments are going to be about the above synopsis, I am going to deal with his thoughts regarding the knives, these being quite central to his synopsis.

    My argument below is supported by numerous previous posters none of whom differed markedly from Massei or Nencini. 

    Davies in contrast is sharply critical of Massei. He simply excludes the Double DNA knife (Exhibit 36) as the murder weapon.

    He is also critical”¦.nay, I would have to say that he is outraged”¦. at Massei holding that Sollecito was responsible for the lesser of the two wounds, that on the right side of Meredith’s neck. He is critical of Micheli for not finding, as a matter of fact, that Guede was the one responsible for the wounds, using his own knife which has yet to be recovered.

    Without more ado I will proceed to Mr Davies’ evaluation:

    “The finding against Sollecito that it was he who inflicted two of the three wounds to Meredith Kercher using a pocket knife which was in his possession at the material time is deeply flawed, offensive and wrong in law”

    Well, I was unaware that Massei had found that Sollecito inflicted two of the three wounds. In fact I am not aware of three wounds (unless he includes what is effectively a nick) , but if there were then Massei only attempted to attribute two, the one to the right of the neck, 4 cms deep and with a width of 1.5 cms, being attributed to Sollecito’s “pocket knife”.

    It did not cause any significant structural damage, unlike the wound to the left, 8 cms deep and 8 cms wide which had penetrated both Meredith’s larynx and the cartilage of the epiglottis, and had broken the hyoid bone. 

    Is the rest “deeply flawed, offensive and wrong in law”?

    “It could not have been part of the prosecution case that Sollecito used a pocket knife to subdue and stab Meredith Kercher. If it had why was Sollecito and/or Knox not charged with carrying the said pocket knife without justified reason? To recapitulate,, the charge alleged that the killing was achieved by means of”¦”¦”¦”¦.and deep lesions to the left anterior-lateral and right lateral regions of the neck, caused by a bladed weapon (Exhibit 36).

    The Massei Court’s finding strikes against basic principles of fairness which applies to all criminal proceedings. Put another way, a criminal court is not generally entitled to bring in a verdict which differs markedly from the basis on which the prosecution puts it’s case. This is because the defence would not be able to adequately prepare and meet such an unexpected contingency. In plain English the defence would be ambushed or taken by surprise. In this case the defence was ambushed and the defendants’ rights (Knox and Sollecito) were fundamentally infringed.”

    Oh come on! Ambushed? Really?

    OK, so the charge did indeed indicate that that both the right and left sided wounds were caused by “a bladed weapon to which Chapter B applies” (Exhibit 36) but the reality is that the defence always knew that Exhibit 36 (because of it’s dimensions and in particular it’s width 4cms from the tip) could not have been the cause of the wound to the left anterior lateral. That’s a matter of simple logic and in any event every expert and all the lawyers in the case agreed on that.

    So the way the charge was erroneously framed in fact misled no-one.

    Indeed had the defence thought so then they could have raised the matter. Mr Davies does not claim that Massei did not have the power to amend the indictment. If the court was unable to, or the defence chose not to raise it, either way thinking it was a clever appeal point, then it did not become one.

    Indeed, Mr Davies will know anyway that in English law, by virtue of The Indictments Act 1915, courts can (and frequently do) order an amendment to an indictment at any stage (which includes during a trial) provided the amendment does not result in an injustice to the accused.  This is a practical necessity as it would be an affront to the concept of justice if defendants were to be acquitted on the basis of a mere technicality.

    One might consider what amendment might have been made.

    A possibility is that reference to the right-sided wound might have been excluded. It was the left-sided wound that was fatal, after all, and caused, as the prosecution would endeavour to prove, by a weapon which, as it happened, belonged to Sollecito.

    The prosecution did, of course, maintain that it was Knox who wielded the weapon, but might, as an alternative, have also asserted that it was Sollecito. Indeed the framing of the charge leaves it an open question as to which of them did. They were charged jointly with having caused Meredith’s death.

    The evidence that it may have been either (AK or RS) is a common feature of cases to which the English legal doctrine of joint criminal enterprise applies.

    The doctrine applies particularly to a case such as this in that no matter who actually wields the weapon the other participant in the common enterprise is deemed to possess the same level of criminal liability even if he did not know that there was a knife or that it would be so used. Being reckless as to that possibility is sufficient.

    It is surprising how often how little is required to establish joint enterprise. Frequently the mere fact that the participants know each other and were there, and that the situation was a combustible one of the group’s making, is enough. The doctrine has come in for a great deal of justified criticism but despite this remains firm law.

    My preference would have been to amend the indictment to refer to the right sided wound being caused by a bladed weapon, the blade being of indeterminate length but with a width of approximately 1.5 cms. It is the width of the wound that is salient because it is indicative of the width of the blade on the knife being used which, whilst also being indicative of the likely length of the blade, but without being sure, could be either a pocket knife (4 cms or more) or a flick knife (which could also be a pocket knife). 1.5 cms is about the width of the tip of one’s index finger, by the way.

    Massei, and others, always refer to this knife as a pocket knife. However henceforth I am going to write “pocket knife” to refer to the options of a pocket knife with a blade of 4cms or more, or a flick knife.

    As to Mr Davies other point as to why Sollecito was not specifically charged with carrying a “pocket knife” without justified reason, I do not know, but since the framing of charges is a matter for the prosecution, one might as well leave the matter there.

    In any event the lack of a specific charge does not in any way preclude a court from inferring the nature of a weapon from the pathology of the wound nor from identifying the probable assailant (as distinct from having to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the culpability of a single perpetrator named in a specific charge of “carrying”).

    Guede did not ever face a specific charge of carrying a weapon but that does not prevent Mr Davis from concluding that Guede had a knife and had stabbed Meredith. It seems that Mr Davies would have been quite happy for Guede to have been so charged and convicted on Professor Vinci’s (see later) dubious testimony.

    In this last respect, however, Mr Davies could have more telling argument. Lets see.

    “To infer that Sollecito had a pocket knife at Via della Pergola 7 on the fateful evening of November 1-2, based on the character evidence of four witnesses called for the defence, was to say the least highly unusual..”

    I think the operative words here are “witnesses called for the defence”, amongst whom was Sollecito’s own father. Yes, highly unusual but then that is what happens when you do not vet your own character witnesses before cross-examination.

    Sollecito’s proclivity for carrying a knife (usually a pocket knife) at all times (and indeed he had one on him at the time of his arrest in the Police Station) is highly relevant. These witnesses referred to a knife with a blade of about 4 cms, or perhaps 6 cms.

    In addition Sollecito was something of a knife aficionado. The police found two specialist knives, a Spiderco and a 2004 model Brian Tighe. Neither of these can be connected to Meredith’s wounds but they are indicative of his affinity to weapons specifically designed to be used in a fight to maim or kill. Clearly a flick knife falls into the same category.

    As to proclivity evidence against Guede one can refer to his brief possession of a kitchen knife acquired at and belonging to the Milan nursery (which he did not break into, he had been given a key).

    There is, of course, Tramontano’s dubious claim (angrily dismissed by Micheli even though Guede was never given the chance to challenge this in court) that a black man broke into his property and, confronted by Tramontano, had pulled out a flick knife as he exited. Tramontano tried to claim the burglar was probably Guede based on a photo of him he had seen in a newspaper. If it really was Guede he was not carrying that knife with him at the Milan nursery 8 weeks later.

    “Even if Sollecito was present at the scene of the crime (as distinct from being complicit), the court could not have been sure that any “pocket knife” in his possession, which incidentally was never recovered, had inflicted all or some of the injuries, the most cogent rationale being:

    1. The prosecution could not prove the dimensions and the character of the knife were consistent with the injuries inflicted upon Meredith Kercher.

    2. The Court paid scant regard to the totality of expert opinion as to the type of bladed weapon (or weapons) which had been used to stab the victim

    3. The Court paid scant regard to the dimensions of a bloody outline of a knife found on Meredith’s pillow

    4. Consequently the Court could not have been sure that any pocket knife and, a fortiori, exhibit 36 had been used to stab Meredith that fateful night.”

    As to 1 above, we know that no suitable weapon was ever recovered but if the indictment had been amended in accordance with my preference then the prosecution would easily have proved that part of the indictment, relating as it does to the wound on the right side of the neck.

    It is a reasonable inference on the balance of probabilities that the wound was caused by a “pocket knife” and if one accepts the presence of multiple attackers (which I understand is a judicial truth in the case even following the latest acquittal of Knox and Sollecito) then, again on the balance of probabilities, and taking into account all the other circumstantial evidence in the case, I submit that it is a reasonable inference that it was Sollecito’s “pocket knife”.

    The bar of “beyond a reasonable doubt” applies to culpability re the specified charge and is not to be confused with the elements.

    As to 2, this simply is not true. I shall look at the totality of the expert opinion in a moment but suffice it to say that Massei spent a considerable amount of time in his Motivation detailing with and discussing the defence experts’ opinions.

    As to 3, (and it was not on the pillow but the bedsheet) it was Professor Vinci’s contention that the bloody outline (there was a dual outline, he said) was left by a knife with a blade 11.3 cms long or a knife with a blade 9.6 cms long with a congruent section of handle 1.7 cms long (9.6 + 1.7 = 11.3). Davies does not mention a blade width but in fact Professor Vinci actually says 1.3 to 1.4 cms wide.

    Taking these measurements as read, Davies points out that they are incompatible with either a pocket knife (such as Sollecito had a proclivity to carry) and Exhibit 36. I have no argument with that observation. It follows, he then argues, that one has to infer the presence of a third knife in any hypothesis and if a pocket knife and Exhibit 36 are already accounted for by Knox and Sollecito then a reasonable inference is that the third knife would have to be Guede’s. Indeed (Davies does not say this, but I will) Professor Vinci’s blade is not incompatible a priori with either of the two wounds.

    This is worth looking at seriously as so far it is the only worthwhile point Davies has made.

    First of all I have to say that I have searched for but have not found any rebuttal evidence or comment from the prosecution amongst the documents on the Wiki.  I do not even see a question on the matter in the cross-examination of Professor Vinci.

    Massei only briefly commented about the bloody outline on the bed sheet.  He opined that the blood stains were certainly “suggestive” but insufficient to establish any clear outlines from which reliable measurements could be established. Clearly then he did not accord any reliability to Professor Vinci’s measurements. But is Massei right? One does not have to be an expert to consider this.

    First of all, here are images of the blood stains.






    In the picture below the stained section of sheet is cut out for analysis the day after the discovery of the murder.

    Did the prosecution overlook their own analysis of the stains? Did they deliberately do so after Exhibit 36 was found, 9 days later on the 12th November, to have Meredith’s DNA on it? Or did they always know that the stains established nothing?






    The next question to be asked is whether we can see the outline of a knife, or rather a blade. I think the honest answer to that is, on balance, yes. We think we see the tip of a blade, do we not? Maybe two, maybe even three.

    It is fairly clear that Professor Vinci takes the largest of the stains to be the hilt of the handle to the knife. Lining that up with what is perhaps the likely clearest possible perceived blade tip (being the middle out of a possible three I believe I see) then the distance to the perceived hilt is indeed something like the 9.6 cms which Professor Vinci has measured.

    But there are problems. Here are two of Ergon’s photos from his posts here and here with Exhibit 36 superimposed on the stains in two different positions to reflect the supposed dual outlines.










    The blob of blood in the bottom left of the pictures and it’s lesser moon at 1, or 2, o’clock are regarded as having come from the same position on the blade and so with that reference point the blade is positioned accordingly in each photo.

    We can surely take it that Professor Vinci also sees the same duality. But if the bloody hilt is aligned to fit with “the moon” stain in order to get the 9.6 cms measurement, then what has happened to that large hilt stain when the knife is moved further to the left, and then dropped a bit, to align to the moon’s planet (the blob)?

    It has either disappeared or become an edge. That doesn’t make sense if “the moon” is the lesser version of the blob. The blob has to come from the first positioning of the knife. Despite this, in the knife’s later position the volume of blood at the hilt has actually increased comparative to the knife’s first position. That doesn’t make sense either.

    So maybe the largest stain pre-exists, even for perhaps a moment, the stains suggesting the blade outlines, but in that case we can throw Professor Vinci’s measurements out of the window.

    Can we do without the blob and it’s moon? It’s all a lot less convincing without them. But in truth we cannot even be sure that they are related. Nor that the largest stain has anything to do with the hilt of a knife.

    A further connected observation concerns Professor Vinci’s claim that the blade of the knife is 1.3/1.4 cms wide. Like the rest of his evidence I do not find this very convincing. I suspect that he has deduced this from the largest stain which has a length, he says, of 1.7 cms. It’s width could then be something like 1.3/1.4 cms.

    If the width of the knife is represented by approximately 1.4 cms then, given the position of the bloody hilt relative to the tip of it’s blade, what are we to make of the two spots of blood in a horizontal line above? They look like the upper (or lower) edge of a knife but they can’t be without making the blade wider.

    Why does it have to be the same knife anyway? The stains could be the result of two different knives collected and laid to rest in the same spot.

    The blood stains are certainly bewitching - rather like seeing patterns in tea leaves at the bottom of one’s cup - but on the balance of probabilities I would not totally rely on anyone’s perception of them even, with all due respect, Ergon’s but his analysis is as good as anyone’s, and that for me is the point of it.

    In short I think that Massei was probably right. These stains are suggestive but basically useless and the police/prosecution ignored them for that reason.

    “Consistent with English law the Massei Court’s findings should be struck down as Wednesbury unreasonable. Where there is no evidence to support a finding of a court or the court has reached a conclusion which is irrational or perverse, in the light of the evidence adduced at trial, a conviction based on that part of the evidence cannot be sustained”¦”¦”¦.The Massei Court also appears to have violated Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to a fair trial),”

    Yeah, right.  The case to which he refers, Associated Provincial Picture Houses v Wednesbury Corporation [1948] 1KB 223, is an odd and unnecessary one to pray in aid.  It was a civil case where the appellant sought judicial review in respect of a licencing decision. As a formulation of a first principle of natural justice it is, of course, unquestionable. However the claim that Massei reached a conclusion that was irrational or perverse is laughable.

    It is at this point that one does begin to wonder whether Davies is indeed connected in some way with the daffy Nigel Scott (Sollecito”˜s ex Lib Dem Haringey Councillor groupie) who similarly emerges with bizarre arguments.

    Next, in his evaluation, we come to a numbers game as to who was for and against the incompatibility of Exhibit 36 with the fatal wound on the left side, but before I enter into that game I want to make a point about incompatibility.

    A knife blade is only incompatible with a wound if the depth of the wound is longer than the length of the blade or if the width of the wound is shorter than the width of the blade at the relevant depth.

    We can therefore establish that Exhibit 36 was not incompatible, a priori, with the depth of the wound.  The blade on Exhibit 36 was 17. 5 cms long and the depth of the wound was 8 cms.

    Yes, I know that other arguments as to incompatibility were advanced based, in the main, on these measurements. These Massei logically deconstructed. In fairness to Mr Davies he did not advance them in his evaluation and so neither shall I.

    I would also have to concede that Sollecito’s “pocket knife” is not incompatible a priori with the wound on the left side nor, even if it”˜s length of blade was over 4 cms, with the wound on the right. Nor Professor Vinci’s knife either.

    The same is true of the width of these knives.

    It should however be recalled that the width of the right-sided wound was also 8 cms. That is over 5 times the width of the “pocket knife”. The width of the blade on Exhibit 36 - 8 cms from it’s tip - was twice the width of the blade on the “pocket knife”.

    This fact, and the robustness of the larger weapon, particularly with regard to the observed butchering at the base of the right-sided cut, makes Exhibit 36 a far more likely candidate, in my submission, than a “pocket knife”, and that’s without taking into account Meredith’s DNA on the blade.

    Returning to our numbers game, Mr Davies puts it slightly differently from Massei. He says -

    “And if that were not enough, of the 8 experts who gave evidence on the point, two (Dr Liviero and Professor Bacci) opined that Exhibit 36 could have caused the fatal wound to Meredith’s left side. Professor Norelli could not rule out Exhibit 36. Professor Ronchi’s opinion is not clear due to the use of the “double negative” (non-incompatibility)  - it will be assumed that he supported the prosecution contention, but in any event al the remaining four experts, Professors Introna, Torre, Cingolani and Dr Patumi) opined that Exhibit 36 could be ruled out.”

    In other words a draw but one of the prosecution experts is a bit “iffy”.

    Massei tells us that Dr Liviero concluded “definite compatibility”, Dr Lalli and Professors Bacci and Norelli “compatibility” whilst “non- incompatibility” came from the 3 GIP experts nominated at a preliminary hearing. The latter were Professors Aprile, Cingolani and Ronchi.

    “Non-incompatibility” is not hard to understand. It simply means not incompatible or rather, compatible.

    Note that Mr Davies has Professor Cingolani lining up to exclude Exhibit 36. Massei disagrees and I agree with Massei. So, for what it is worth (and this is a bit childish I know) Mr Davies loses the game 7 - 3.

    “And one final thought. If the defendants (Knox and Sollecito) were sufficiently compos mentis to dispose of the pocket knife “¦. Why did they not dispose of Exhibit 36?  By a process of deduction and logical synthesis the answer is plain for all to see: Exhibit 36 never left Corso Garibaldi and was not the murder weapon “

    Because it was on his landlord’s inventory of kitchen items? Indeed we don’t know for sure that the “pocket knife “was actually disposed of. All we know is that it was not identified and recovered by the police.

    And In Conclusion

    This is the second of my posts involving Mr Davies. I may not be disposed to do any more. I have to say that although he certainly provided some food for thought on this one, I have not been impressed with his analysis in the topics I have covered so far.

    Others here have been tabulating other factual errors and forced arguments and as I mentioned at the start we may see them carry this a bit further.


    Thursday, July 30, 2015

    Problems With Fred Davies #1: Did Guede’s Separate Trial REALLY Impact Negatively On RS And AK?

    Posted by James Raper




    1. Summary Of The Complaints

    I want to write about the separate trials of Guede on the one hand and Knox and Sollecito on the other.

    This feature has often been criticized by the apologists for Knox and Sollecito, and I was surprised to learn just recently that their gripe seems to have some support in learned establishments in the UK! Ahem.

    The gripe concerns the Fast Track trial of Rudy Guede, and the consequent Supreme Court confirmation of his conviction, with the apologists arguing that these had an adverse and unfair effect upon the proceedings in which Knox and Sollecito were involved. It is based on the simple fact that Guede chose to be tried separately, this being seen as an unfair complication for the administration of justice in the Italian justice system.

    There are a number of complaints that the usual apologists have regarding the separate trial of Guede. Most of these are in fact fantasies as I will address.

    These complaints, or constant refrains, which some apologists fondly thought could form the basis of a complaint to the European Court of Human Rights in due course, can be summarised as follows -

      1.  That the proceedings concerning Guede established various tenets the most important one of which was the multiple attacker scenario, and that this unfairly affected Knox and Sollecito bearing in mind that their defence was based on the Lone-Wolf scenario.

      2.  That the evidence in the Guede proceedings could never be effectively challenged by the Knox and Sollecito camps.

      3.  That, in consequence of which, Knox and Sollecito had virtually already been convicted by the judiciary by the time of their own trial.

      4.  That Guede was allowed to give evidence against Knox and Sollecito at both his own trial and at the Hellmann appeal hearing without effective cross-examination. Had this been the case the defence would likely have exposed and demonstrated his sole responsibility for the murder of Meredith Kercher. Indeed had he been tried together with Knox and Sollecito this could well have happened at the Massei trial.

      5.  That Hellmann was right to give no probity value to the content of Guede’s sentencing and the subsequent annulment unfairly allowed material that was prejudicial for the aforesaid reasons into the Nencini Appeal.

      6.  That Guede was induced into electing for a separate trial with the promise of a reduced sentence should he be convicted - this being to prosecution’s advantage re the case against Knox and Sollecito.


    2. How Overall The Complaints Are Wrong

    I think that we know what fast-track is by now, so I will not dwell on that. Guede’s trial was over relatively quickly. It lasted a month and likely consisted of about 3-4 hearings. There were just a few witnesses called.

    The judge, Micheli, in addition, dwelt on all the evidence in the investigative file including witness statements and forensics. This was because Guede was charged with murder “in complicity with others” and because Micheli also had to make the decision whether or not to commit Knox and Sollecito to stand trial as the other accomplices.

    Before I address whether or not there could be any justification at all for the apologists’ above complaints I would like to mention that learned quarter to which I referred at the outset.

    I recently stumbled (with the help of the apologists’ website) across the Criminal Law and Justice Weekly website.

    I was surprised to learn that various articles had been appearing on it under the heading of “The Brutal Killing of Meredith Kercher - A critical examination of the trials and subsequent appeal hearings of Rudy Hermann Guede, Amanda Marie Knox and Raffaele Sollecito.”

    Lexis Nexis ( publishers and distributors of legal material to the legal profession in the UK)  describe Criminal Law and Justice as”¦.”the leading weekly resource for criminal law practitioners and all those working within the courts and criminal justice areas.”

    The articles are by an F. G Davies, described as a Barrister and listed in Anthony and Berryman’s Magistrates Court Guide as a Deputy Justices Clerk, North Cambridgeshire, in England. He is also a contributor and specialist editor to Justices of the Peace Law Reports.




    Online image associated with an annual legal-fees guide which FG Davies edits


    Here are two quotes I picked out relevant to this post about separate trials.

    “This supports the writer’s contention made earlier that the holding of separate trials for co-accused was wrong in principle and law because the prosecution were alleging that at all three defendants committed the crime acting in concert”

    And:

    “It provided Guede with a golden opportunity to minimize his part in the attack upon and murder of Meredith Kercher, loading the blame on to Knox and Sollecito who, by this time were suspected to be chief architects of the attack.”

    It is of course perfectly true that in the anglo-saxon world Guede would not have had the choice to elect for trial separately from his co-accused. It might have made for a very interesting trial for everyone concerned if he had stood trial together with Knox and Sollecito, but for reasons I will explain later I doubt it, or that Knox and Sollecito would have gained any advantage from it.

    Indeed separate trials had rendered a very specific advantage to the Knox and Sollecito camps in that Guede had already been convicted when Knox and Sollecito stood trial, a fact that their PR campaign and followers have drilled home at every conceivable opportunity.

    But what on earth does it mean to say that “the holding of a separate trial [for Guede] was wrong in principle and law”?  .

    Whose law? Whose principles? Just how deeply does the Deputy Justices Clerk delve into the respective systems of justice (and particularly the Italian one) for a comparative evaluation?

    Certainly on the basis of a quick read of his articles I would say that he hasn’t delved very far at all. In fact I will go further and say that despite that he is capable of a detailed review of various aspects of the case he pretty much shares the same hostility and concerns based upon parochialism and ignorance to be found on the usual apologists’ websites.

    So I will try to put him and the apologists right on how the Italians cope, as a matter of law, with any evidential difficulties that separate trials can throw up.

    However, let’s start first with the assertion that the fast-track trial “provided Guede with a golden opportunity to minimize his part in the attack upon and murder of Meredith Kercher, loading the blame on to Knox and Sollecito”? Is that true?

    Guede admitted that he was present at the scene of the murder and he has always minimized his part in the attack, in fact denying that he had any part. This is all to be found in his statements pre trial. He would have minimized his part even if he had been tried with his co-accused and had given evidence. Given that he was not believed anyway, it is difficult to detect wherein lies the golden opportunity of a fast track trial.

    It is also difficult to envisage what cross examination formula (and the point of it) would have been available to the Knox and Sollecito defence teams as to Guede’s minimal role or otherwise given that Knox and Sollecito maintain that they were not there and thus are hardly in a position to dispute Guede”˜s version.

    Did Guede load the blame onto Knox and Sollecito?  The answer to that is that he did directly implicate Knox but not Sollecito. Again this is all to be found in his pre-trial statements and interviews with the police and investigating magistrates. Whilst on the toilet he had heard the doorbell ring, Meredith call out “Who is it?” and later say “We need to talk” followed by another woman’s voice, which he thought was Amanda, replying “What’s happening?”  He had also claimed to have seen, through Filomena’s bedroom window, a female figure with flowing hair and had recognised the shape as being that of Amanda Knox.

    It might be useful at this point just to pause and remember when Guede could have been cross-examined on this by the Knox and Sollecito defence teams.

    Guede was called to give evidence during the Massei trial but declined to give evidence. Not surprising given that he was appealing his own conviction at the time. This was heard two weeks after the conclusion of the Massei trial.

    He then appeared at the Hellmann trial by which time he already had a definitive conviction. On this occasion he did respond to questioning and I shall look at this a little later.

    3. The Specific Mistakes In Each Complaint

    Let us return now to the apologists standard refrains as I listed them at the beginning.

    1.  That the proceedings concerning Guede established various tenets the most important one of which was the multiple attacker scenario, and that this unfairly affected Knox and Sollecito bearing in mind that their defence was based on the Lone-Wolf scenario.

    One might also add the staged break in and some others as well which were all considered by Micheli and endorsed by Massei.

    However as at the conclusion of the Massei trial Guede’s first appeal was still extant and the Supreme Court’s definitive reflections on the multiple attacker scenario were still a year off. Nothing had been written in stone at that point. If the multiple attacker scenario became a tenet of the case then it would be more accurate to say that it became so because of Massei joining up with Micheli.

    But let’s also take in the second refrain to consider alongside the first at this point.

    2.  That the evidence in the Guede proceedings could never be effectively challenged by the Knox and Sollecito camps.

    This really is pretty rich. So what? Knox and Sollecito were not on trial there. And what to make of the Massei trial which of course is when Knox and Sollecito then wheeled out their big guns; the expensive lawyers and experts in telecommunications, forensic pathology, forensic DNA, ballistics and footprint analysis?

    The Massei trial may have taken its time but it was nevertheless (unlike Guede’s trial) a full blooded adversarial trial of first instance, lasting a year, with the prosecution producing each and every one of it’s witnesses for rigorous cross-examination by the defence.

    It was Massei that confirmed the multiple attacker scenario on the basis solely of that evidence and with scarce a mention of Guede’s sentencing report. It is lame to argue that Massei was in any way constrained by Micheli’s reasoning on the matter though his judgement was indeed available.

    However Massei did make the following observation -

    “”¦”¦the reconstruction of the facts leads to the unavoidable conclusion that he (Guede) was one of the main protagonists (writer’s note: no concession to Guede’s chances on appeal, then?); thus it is not possible to avoid speaking of Guede in relation to the hypothesised criminal facts. The defence of the accused in particular have requested the examination of texts concerning only Rudy, and have demanded the results, specifically concerning Guede of the investigative activities carried out by the police in particular. In fact they have expressly indicated Guede as being the author, and the sole author, of the criminal acts perpetrated on the person of Meredith Kercher.”

    So here we see the defence making the running on Guede (without Guede being present as a co-accused to dispute anything) to include any and all evidence as to his alleged criminal background with the precise purpose of bolstering the Lone Wolf scenario, all of which was duly evaluated by Massei.

    [One might think, in addition to the above, that Guede would have had cause to complain about the indictments for Knox and Sollecito, in that both were indicted, and subsequently convicted, with the crime of murder “in complicity with Rudy Hermann Guede”, although he still had two appeals left and theoretically (though not realistically) it was still possible for him to be acquitted of the crime. However the drawing up of indictments in separate trials, and how the judiciary would deal with an outcome such as above (which I don’t think would be difficult) would be a topic for another discussion.]

    3.  That, in consequence of which, Knox and Sollecito had virtually already been convicted by the judiciary by the time of their own trial.

    This is so lame by any objective standard, but it is amazing just how often this particular drum is beaten. However our Deputy Justices Clerk would probably subscribe to this. He develops an argument akin to this which he terms the Forbidden Reasoning (echoes of Preston’s “The Forbidden Killer”?) which is basically that Micheli made a number of errors which were then compounded in subsequent hearings.

    4.  That Guede was allowed to give evidence against Knox and Sollecito at both his own trial and at the Hellmann appeal hearing without effective cross-examination. Had this been the case the defence would likely have exposed and demonstrated his sole responsibility for the murder of Meredith Kercher. Indeed had he been tried together with Knox and Sollecito this could well have happened at the Massei trial.

    The evidence that implicated Knox I have already mentioned. It is not entirely decisive in that it is not a solid ID of Knox at the crime scene. At the Hellmann appeal Guede added this in an exchange with Knox”˜s lawyer -

    DEFENSE ATTORNEY DALLA VEDOVA””And therefore, Mr. Guede, when you wrote verbatim that it was a “horrible murder of Meredith a lovely wonderful young woman, by Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox” what do you mean exactly? Have you ever said this?
    WITNESS””Well, I”¦ this, I’ve never said it explicitly, in this way, but I’ve always thought it.
    DEFENSE ATTORNEY DALLA VEDOVA””And so, it’s not true.
    WITNESS””No, it’s very true”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦..............  So if I wrote those words it’s because I’ve always had them inside of me. It’s not up to me to decide who it was who killed Meredith, in the statement that I made in my trial, I always said who was there in that home that damned night, so, I think I’m not saying anything new”¦”¦

    In another exchange, this time with Bongiorno, Guede makes it clear that he is not planning to answer any further questions about what happened that night but this is because he has already stated (statements and recorded interviews etc), and stands by, all that he has to say about it.  Thus all that is taken into evidence perfectly properly. The matter is then left to rest by the defence.

    Indeed it is difficult to conceive what further effective cross-examination could have occurred in this situation because clearly Guede would have responded with exactly the same answer each time.

    The above exchanges also show just why it is unlikely that there would have been any fireworks had Guede been tried with his co-accused.

    Guede would not have been obliged to give oral testimony any more than were Knox and Sollecito and in the event that he had done so (and I think it would have been in his interests to do so) his evidence would not only have been the same but it would have been subject to the same limitations, which would have been zealously protected by his lawyers, that had protected Knox when she gave oral evidence.

    On due consideration it might have been a somewhat tetchy affair for the lawyers but it would not have been in the interests of any of the respective teams of lawyers for there to have been any surprises such as Guede moving from beyond what he had already said in pre-trial statements to a solid ID of Knox from the witness box. That wouldn’t have particularly helped Guede as it would have affected his credibility even further. They all had prepared positions to protect and Guede’s presence would be neither that much of an added threat nor an advantage for Knox and Sollecito.

    5.  That Hellmann was right to give no probity value to the content of Guede’s sentencing and the subsequent annulment unfairly allowed material that was prejudicial for the aforesaid reasons into the Nencini Appeal.

    Now we are into the law, Italian law that is, and how it coped with separate trials of co-accused.

    By this time Guede’s conviction, remember, had been ruled as definitive by the Supreme Court.

    This is what Hellmann said about that -

    “”¦”¦. in truth, this judgement, acquired pursuant to article 238 and so utilisable under the probative framework only as one of it’s evaluative elements pursuant to article 192.”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦.. already appears in itself a particularly weak element, from the moment that this judgement related to Rudy Guede had been carried out under the fast track procedure.”

    It will be useful to consider some of Prosecutor-General Galati’s observations in the prosecution’s appeal submission and we can do this because the Supreme Court agreed with him.

    This is what the Supreme Court said -

    “The submission on the violation of article 238 “¦”¦.is correct. Even though (Hellmann) obtained the final judgement pronounced by this court against Rudy Guede, after properly considering that the judgement was not binding, it has completely “snubbed” the content of the same, also neutralizing it’s undeniable value as circumstantial evidence on the presupposition that it’s profile was particularly weak, since the judgement was based at the state of proceedings without the enrichment acquired as a result of the renewal of the investigations hearing arranged on appeal, In reality, the court was not authorised at all, for this reason alone, to ignore the content of the definitive judgement.”

    The enrichment referred to would of course have been the Independent Expert’s evidence (subsequently debunked by Nencini) and the Supreme Court also added that in any event article 238 was not impaired at all by the fact that the first instance trial was fast track.

    At the end of the day this was just poor argument by Hellmann but it was symptomatic of the many flaws that underlay much if not all of his reasoning for acquittal.

    More importantly for me and in addition to the foregoing the Supreme Court delivered a withering criticism of Hellmann’s understanding of circumstantial evidence and how to evaluate and treat it in its broad spectrum.

    However, how can and what elements contained in the separate trial of one co-accused have any probative weight in the trial of the others?

    Prosecutor-General Galati puts it like this. The Supreme Court’s rulings -

    “have now settled definitively regarding the interpretation according to which finalised judgements can be acquired by the proceedings, as provided for by the indicated law, but they do not constitute full proof of the facts ascertained by them, but necessitate corroborations not differing from the declarations of the co-accused in the same proceedings or in a connected proceeding”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦......
    Naturally this confirmation is not directly used for the purpose of proof but as corroboration of other circumstantial pieces of evidence or of evidence already acquired, not very different from what happens when declarations of collaborators with justice corroborate each other.”

    In the event the only material from Guede that really seems to me to have hitherto been extraneous to the first instance trial of Knox and Sollecito was the inclusion at the Nencini appeal of Guede’s partial ID of Knox at the scene and his evidence as to Meredith’s missing money, which were corroborative of elements of evidence that had appeared at the Massei trial; in the case of the missing money for instance, the missing credit cards and Filomena’s testimony that at a meeting shortly before both the murder and the day the rent was due Meredith had told her that she had the cash to hand and was prepared to hand it over there and then.

    No such money was found at the crime scene. One suspects that these two elements would have been more prominent at the Massei trial, and have been motivated more attentively, had the three been tried together. In the event Guede’s partial ID of Knox was not even mentioned by Massei and Knox and Sollecito, in the absence of any evaluation of Guede’s evidence, were acquitted (not even motivated at all in fact) of the charge of theft in relation to the money and the credit cards.

    Given the foregoing I would argue that Knox and Sollecito derived an advantage rather than a disadvantage from the separate trials.

    Furthermore I would argue that the material from Guede’s separate proceedings was not particularly damaging given the overall context of the evidence already directly available from the trial of Knox and Sollecito (which received some but in truth did not require much corroborative confirmation from Guede’s separate trial) and which in itself was sufficient to found a verdict of “beyond reasonable doubt”, but it did supply some useful insight into a motive when of course Hellmann had found none and Massei had supplied a rather improbable one.

    6.  That Guede was induced into electing for a separate trial with the promise of a reduced sentence should he be convicted - this being to prosecution’s advantage re the case against Knox and Sollecito.

    Needless to say this is what you get from desperate and deluded minds. Guede’s lawyer has explained why his client took his advice and the decision was perfectly rational and in Guede’s interests. Guede was entitled to a third off his sentence from choosing fast track though I am no fan of that. Furthermore I have explained why no particular advantage accrued to the prosecution from this choice other than that it probably foreshortened the time that a full trial of the three would have taken.


    Sunday, July 26, 2015

    Why The Count Of Discredited Prosecution Witnesses Even Now Remains Down Around Zero

    Posted by James Raper



    As with all images on TJMK this image above will expand if clicked on


    Just sifting through the latest drivel on Injustice in Perugia today and I came across this statement from one of their main posters.

    “It was physically impossible for Capezalli to have heard any sounds from Meredith’s residence”.

    Note : not that she was mistaken or that her evidence was unreliable but the bald statement that it was physically impossible for her to have heard anything.

    Was she profoundly deaf then? If not, then why this assertion? Without some basis for this assertion then it is simply a dismissive slur on the credibility of the witness.

    This happens to be the same poster who wowed that board with his claim that the Prosecution suppressed exculpatory evidence that would have cleared Knox and Sollecito.

    Not that he supplied any proof. How could he?

    It is axiomatic, of course, that if there was suppressed evidence then what it was would not be known. Nevertheless it was a ready springboard for calls from mindless idiots to have the Prosecution fully investigated and charged with perverting the course of justice!

    Anyway, to move on, the purpose of this post is just to revisit (with pictorial assistance) Capezalli’s testimony (I shall call her Nara from now on) and see if there is even a scintilla of justification for the claim.

    Now to be fair, Nara did say in her evidence that she had double glazing and maybe that is what he is referring to although for the life of me I don’t see why that would make it impossible for her to hear a scream outside.

    But it’s worth investigating because it’s the sort of thing that does get repeated without further analysis and I have read others taking that remark at face value and doubting whether she did hear a scream and, perhaps more credibly, whether she would have heard the sound of someone running on the gravel of the cottage forecourt and up the metal steps from the car park.

    Here is what she said -

    “What happens is that getting up I’m going past the window of the dining room, because the bathroom is on that side, and as I am there I heard a scream, but a scream that wasn’t a normal scream. [A terrifying and agonising long scream as she describes it elsewhere] I got goose bumps to be truthful. At that moment I no longer knew what was happening, and then I went on to the bathroom. There is a little window with no shutters, none at all.”

    Mignini then asks -

    Q—Well, you go by the window and you hear this cry?
    Ans ““ Yes.
    Q ““ Then you continue to go towards the bathroom, you told me?
    Ans ““ Yes.
    Q ““ Do you open the bathroom window?
    Ans ““ No.
    Q ““ Explain what happened for us.
    Ans ““ I haven’t any shutters on that window, I only have double-glazing so I can look straight out
    Q ““ So you looked out of the bathroom window?
    Ans”“ I didn’t open up because I had all the little succulent plants there for the light.

    A little late in her testimony Mignini seeks to clarify her evidence -

    Q”“ So you hear the scream, go to the bathroom, look out the window and you don’t see anything?
    Ans ““ No.
    Q ““ Then you go back to the bedroom?
    Ans ““ Yes.
    Q ““ When is it that you hear the noises you described, and then we will see what they are?
    Ans ““ I hear the noises I described when I was closing the bathroom door, then I heard running, because that steel there [the metal stairs] makes a tremendous noise at night, then when you don’t hear cars going by or such like, I looked out but there was nobody there.
    Q ““ From which way?
    Ans ““ To the left and the right, and there was nobody there.
    Q ““ Then you heard the scuffling?
    Ans ““ The same, in the meantime I heard running on the stairs, from the other direction they were running in the driveway.

    Much later Nara is helpfully (perhaps) cross examined by Dalla Vedova on her remark that she has double glazing, as follows -

    CDV - How are your windows made?
    Ans -  My windows are made of wood. They have double glazing and they have a shutter.
    CDV - When you say “they have double glazing” do you mean that every single window has two panes, or are there two windows, one in front of the other?
    Ans -  No, two panes in each side and opening in the middle.

    Confused? What is she really describing?

    Many moons ago Kermit put together a very helpful Powerpoint lambasting the behaviour and claims of Paul Ciolino, the American PI who appeared on CBS rubbishing the suggestion that Nara would have been able to hear anything. It is obviously Ciolino’s disreputable work that is the basis for the claim.

    I am going to lift some stills from Kermit’s excellent Powerpoint and add to them some more from a (somewhat infamous) Channel 5 documentary, from which it will be clear that

    (a) Nara doesn’t have double glazing, nor shutters, at least not at the back of her property overlooking the cottage. However there are shutters at the front and, for all I know, double glazing there but that is not of concern to us.

    (b)  There is little reason to doubt that she would have been able to hear sounds outside quite well.

    Let’s start.

    Here’s a picture of the back of Nara’s property immediately above the car park.






    Here it is again in relation to the cottage






    In the first picture Nara’s first floor flat is shown circled. In the second, it is obvious that only the roof of the cottage would be visible from the first floor, as indeed she said in her testimony.

    There are two further floors above. The top floor is the one to which Ciolino (and Pater Van Sant) gained access, having tried but failed to interest Nara. Nara in her evidence said that there was an apartment above which she rented out and I suspect that this was the top floor. The top floor undoubtedly had double glazing or double casements.

    Below is one of the top floor windows. (We can see Ciolino’s reflection in the glass)






    And here he is, standing in front of the same window whilst conducting his experiment with a couple of kids running along the road outside -






    As we shall see it really was quite pointless conducting off-the-cuff sound experiments from there with the double casement shut tight

    Nara said that her daughter also lived in the building so either the second floor was a separate conversion for her daughter or first and second were shared and the second was where their bedrooms were. That’s actually immaterial as it is the first floor that really interests us.

    Here is a close up of the first floor. We can be sure because we can see Nara and the co-presenters of the Channel 5 documentary standing on the balcony.






    We can see how large the windows are on either side of the balcony. As to the window on the right it is also apparent that this has been blocked up save as to four panes in the middle so that now there is only that smaller window there.

    Let us now look at that window from the inside.






    “One went up, one went over there” is Nara explaining to the Italian TV reporter the sounds she heard.

    Clearly then she is standing inside her bathroom and the bathroom window looks over the car park. Indeed we can see her succulent plants on the inside window ledge as she stated in her evidence. Also, if we look closely, we can see that her wall is tiled or wall-papered with a tile design befitting a bathroom. Probably that wall is also made of little more than plasterboard.

    One thing is quite certain though and that is that the window, which opens in the middle, is not double glazed.

    Nara’s understanding however seems to be rather different. To her “double glazing” is (as she said to Dalla Vedova) “two panes in each side and opening in the middle”.

    We can also infer that the large window to the left of the balcony belongs to her dining room. What she said, in effect, was that she was traversing the first floor (from left to right) from her dining room to her bathroom (being both on the same side, as she says). She heard the scream in her dining room.

    The window there does not appear to be blocked off as it is to the right. Indeed I think we can see full length drapes or net curtains but certainly one would expect a larger window there and again, clearly, it is not double glazed.

    So again, why would it be physically impossible for her to have heard a sound, particularly a scream, coming from the cottage?

    It couldn’t be because it was too far away. We can see that from the pictures but also here is a handy GoogleMap calculation of the distance from her place to the far side of the cottage.






    So that’s, say, 45 metres. Or 49 yards. Not far at all. Thanks to Yummi for bringing that up on pmf.org.

    We should also remember that it was the 1st November which is a religious holiday in Italy in remembrance of the dead and therefore background noise was quieter than usual. It was also probably sometime around 11pm and the back of Nara’s property looks out on what is a natural amphitheatre in which noise will echo.

    Nara Capezalli in fact came across as a compelling witness to what she heard that night and there is no way at all that it was physically impossible for her not to have heard that scream. Nor the metal stairs (”..makes a tremendous noise at night””¦.) just off to the right of her property and immediately below it.

    On a personal note I was recently driven nuts by a manhole cover that had come loose in the road outside my bedroom window. Cars constantly drove over it and the noise kept me awake. The top floor of the car park would probably also act like a sounding board and the noise made by the stairs may also have come up through the stairwell we see immediately in front of her property. I am not so sure about the sound of gravel on the cottage forecourt being crunched underneath but already I am more than prepared to believe Nara on that score as well. Why not?

    Finally, as we await the Cassation Motivation (whenever!) I seem to remember that at least one appeal point was the failure of the lower courts to accede to a defence request for audio tests to be conducted from Nara’s property.

    Bearing in mind that Judge Marasca reportedly has stated that the ground for overturning the Nencini convictions was insufficient and contradictory evidence one wonders whether Cassation will say that a test was required, in the absence of which Nara’s testimony can be thrown into a pot along with other evidence somehow deemed “insufficient”?

    If they do then watch out for them getting the double glazing issue quite wrong as well.


    Saturday, May 30, 2015

    Court Filing Contends Fifth Chambers Encroached Illegally On First Chambers & Florence Court Powers

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters





    We have devoted an entire series by lawyers to showing how unsound in law, in science, in media analysis, and in facts of the case the Marasca/Bruno explanations are.

    This opinion representing the Perugia and Florence Prosecutions was drafted by several of the most experienced and respected lawyers in Italy.

    It was drafted in light of the spoken Fifth Chambers verdict pro-defendant at the end of March. The panel’s written explanation was then overdue. The opinion was filed with the Florence court.

    These passages quoted below raise issues of what the Fifth Chambers under the Penal Code legally can and can not do, with respect to prior rulings of (1) the Supreme Court itself, which mostly overturned Hellmann in 2013 for exceeding legal scope; and (2) the Florence (Nencini) appeal court.

    According to this opinion, the Fifth Chambers has significantly overstepped its legal boundaries in brushing aside previous rulings and trying to fulfill the role of an appeal court, or a first-level trial court.

    This was the same overstretch that the First Chambers concluded the 2011 Hellmann appeal court had wrongly done. Both courts are widely considered in Italy to have been illegally bent.

    This is now uncharted territory. If this opinion goes forward the Judges of the First Chambers and Florence court and the Council of Magistrates all seem likely to side with what it claims.  If so reactions might ripple on for years.

    The Fifth Chambers judges might find themselves increasingly beleaguered. And their rulings on evidence items and the investigators and prosecutors and foreign media would all seem to be moot, if the perception grows that the Fifth Chambers should not even have gone there.

    the judgment of the [Florence] court remitted to would have been impugnable only for reasons not regarding the points already decided by the Court of Cassation, according to the very clear disposition of Article 628, second paragraph, Criminal Procedure Code. From this it follows that the Fifth Chamber of the Supreme Court, called on to decide the merits of the appeals brought by the accused against the decision of the court remitted to, would have had to consider as inadmissible the appeals presented in violation of the second paragraph of Article 628 Criminal Procedure Code and, in any case, would have had to rigorously conform with the points already decided by the First Chamber and with all the questions of law decided by the same”¦

    the Court of Cassation cannot, therefore, ever adopt decisions on the merits and issue orders of acquittal under Article 530, second paragraph, Criminal Procedure Code.

    ...two chambers of the same Court of Cassation, the First (the one competent for proceedings in homicide matters, whose decision of annulment is definitive and who had identified and decided questions of law in a definitive and un-retractable manner) and the Fifth (who would have had to decide the appeals presented only on grounds of legitimacy of the defendants’, constrained by what had already been definitively decided by the First) have handed down two absolutely divergent decisions and the second had annulled the Florentine decision, positively excluding any remitting to another court and acquitting the defendants pursuant to Article 530, second paragraph, Criminal Procedure Code.

    the judgment of the [Florence] court remitted to would have been impugnable only for reasons not regarding the points already decided by the Court of Cassation, according to the very clear disposition of Article 628, second paragraph, Criminal Procedure Code. From this it follows that the Fifth Chamber of the Supreme Court, called on to decide the merits of the appeals brought by the accused against the decision of the court remitted to, would have had to consider as inadmissible the appeals presented in violation of the second paragraph of Article 628 Criminal Procedure Code and, in any case, would have had to rigorously conform with the points already decided by the First Chamber and with all the questions of law decided by the same”¦

    the Court of Cassation cannot, therefore, ever adopt decisions on the merits and issue orders of acquittal under Article 530, second paragraph, Criminal Procedure Code.

    ...two chambers of the same Court of Cassation, the First (the one competent for proceedings in homicide matters, whose decision of annulment is definitive and who had identified and decided questions of law in a definitive and un-retractable manner) and the Fifth (who would have had to decide the appeals presented only on grounds of legitimacy of the defendants’, constrained by what had already been definitively decided by the First) have handed down two absolutely divergent decisions and the second had annulled the Florentine decision, positively excluding any remitting to another court and acquitting the defendants pursuant to Article 530, second paragraph, Criminal Procedure Code.

    from these starting points in fact and in law which are absolutely undeniable, it emerges that the course of proceedings in this case have been absolutely linear and respectful of the substance of the procedural rules up to and including the Florentine decision.

    the Court of Cassation, on the appeal of the Prosecutor-General of [the Perugia] district Court, had in a radical and definitive manner annulled the acquitting pronouncement and had remitted it to the Florentine district court because the same would adopt the consequent decisions of merit in the line of reasoning of the principles of law laid down by the First Chamber of the Supreme Court and of the points decided by it.

    These principles of law are by now unmodifiable and unarguable: the [Fifth Chambers] , called on to decide the matter, as a “second opinion”, concerning the appeal of the defendants from the [Florence] judgment below, would have had to hand down a judgment fully within the “railway tracks” of the law, as fixed by the First Chamber, like the Florentine district court did, principles from among which we may cite:

    [Umodifiable principle] the principle, in fact the unfailing legal prerequisite of a Supreme Court decision, namely the fact that the Court is precluded from “trespassing into a re-evaluation of the compendium of evidence” (see the judgment of the First Chamber at page 40);

    [Unmodifiable principle] the principle of law of the total and holistic evaluation of the probative material, as opposed to the “parcelled-up and atomistic evaluation of the pieces of circumstantial evidence, taking them into consideration one at a time and discarded in terms of their demonstrative potentiality”, which characterised instead, in the negative, the decision of the Court presided by Pratillo Hellmann (see the decision of the same First Chamber at pp. 40 and 41”¦ ). The ancient brocard “Quae singula non probant, simul unita probant” [”˜Those which alone do not prove, together do prove’], quoted on p 41 of the First Chamber’s judgment, consecrates in a definitive and unmodifiable manner this requirement of a global and holistic approach in which each individual piece of the jigsaw puzzle of reconstruction of the facts is considered together with all the others in their demonstrative synergy;

    [Unmodifiable principle] the principle by which the [Hellmann] court had run afoul of grave shortcomings and contradictory lines of reasoning and in glaring misrepresentations of the outcome, even in the attempted decoupling of the calunnia, by now definitively attributed to Ms Knox, with the result of masking from view the responsibility of the same in the homicide;

    [Unmodifiable principle] the principle according to which the testimony of the homeless person Mr Curatolo ought to have been evaluated on the basis of corroboration between his statements and the objective and unarguable circumstances emerging from the trial (such as the fact that the witness had with absolute decisiveness anchored the fact of having seen the two accused in the precincts of the basketball courts of Piazza Grimana, nowadays Piazza Fortebraccio, the evening before the arrival, the following day, at the Via della Pergola house of the men from Forensics in their white coveralls), rather than on the basis of Mr Curatolo’s social conditions and lifestyle (see the cited judgment of the First Chamber at page 50);

    [Unmodifiable principle] the principle according to which the definitive conviction of accomplice Rudy Hermann Guede ought to have been taken into account (no. 7195/11, published on 16.12.2010, it also from the First Criminal Chamber of Cassation), Guede having been held to have been extraneous to the simulation of burglary of a house. [A] habitation that, on the night of the murder, was solely at the availability of the victim and of Amanda Knox and from the statements made by the same Rudy before the Perugian district court, according to which Meredith was killed by the two co-accused (see the judgment at pages 55 and 56).

    [Unmodifiable principle] The principle by which contamination of the evidence is to be proved by the party invoking it and which, on the facts of the case, no evidence in support had been offered and which the [Hellmann} Court had seriously confused the abstract possibility of the fact with the averment of the fact (see the judgment at page 69).Umodifiable principle] The principle according to which it was a matter of a homicide committed by multiple persons, in concourse amongst themselves (see page 73 of the cited judgment).

    Here is a translation of Article 530:

    Article 530:

    1. If the act does not subsist [541 2, 542], if the defendant has not commited it [541 2, 542], if the act is not an offence or it is not envisaged by law as an offence, that is, if the offence has been committed by a non-indictable person [c.p. 85] or by a not punishable person for other reasons, the judge issues a judgement of acquittal, stating the reason. 

    2.The judge issues a judgement of acquittal also when there is lack of evidence or it is not sufficient, or there is contradictory evidence that the act subsists, that the defendant has comitted it, that the act constitutes an offence or that the offence has been committed by an indictable person.(1).

    3. If there is evidence that the act has been committed in circumstances of a legal excuse or exemption from criminal liability, that is, there is doubt about them, the judge issues a judgement of acquittal pursuant to clause 1.

    4. In the event of an acquittal the judge applies security measures, in the cases provided for by law.

    And here is a translation of Article 628:

    Impugnability of a ruling issued by a judge after remand

    1. A verdict that had been issued by a court following a Cassation order of remand, may be impugned through a recourse at Supreme Court of Cassation if the ruling was issued on an appeal instance, and through the mean provided by law if was issued on a first instance level.

    2. In any case a verdict issued by a court following a Cassation order of remand may be appealed only on the reasons that do not concern those that had already been decided by Cassation on the order of remand, or for not abiding to disposition of art. 627 paragraph 2.


    Tuesday, May 05, 2015

    A Shaky Castle Of Cards At Best: The Long-Term Fight For Legitimacy #2

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    RS and AK in New York a while back, the last time that they actually met


    Gloom and doom have been dissipating for over a month now in Italy among those most invested in a just outcome, for the reasons given in this immediate-post-verdict post.

    Note that the defense camps really want and need that legitimacy. They know the perverse judgment is not the end of the road. They have clamped down hard on what RS and AK can say.

    In the Italian legal community the Fifth Chambers are getting some scathing commentary for their strange law and dismissiveness of the facts of the case which Cardiol in the post below this one once again underlined.

    The Fifth Chambers’ sentencing report should be red meat, very tough for the hapless judges to write and a target from Day One and, under a new law in Italy which already overturned several Cassation verdicts, a very likely candidate for a legal suit.

    The two book trials should slowly strip the emperors bare (remember those books are still very unread, even by many who read this site, and neither are in Italian yet), and could cost Knox more time inside and both of them fines and civil suits.

    The psychologist SeekingUnderstanding has posted several times on how untreated troubled psychology rarely simply gets better with time. RS’s startling new crack at AK shows he has no inner calm, Knox’s delay in wedding plans and her incessant anger and vagueness maybe too.

    Neither seem to have the big bucks they will need for their legal teams going forward, or the promise of successful careers. Sollecito still hasnt worked a day in his life and his preferred software area never sees successful entrants at his age. Knox’s only known area of interest - paid writing - is a fast-shrinking field.

    Several tough books are already in the works. And the media loves conspiracy theories and hoaxes, and as all the real conspiracies and hoaxes have been on the defenses’ side, trends will also be against RS and AK there.

    The only safe bets are that there will be various surprise happenings in the next six months - and that we’d rather be in our camp than in theirs.


    Thursday, April 23, 2015

    The Knox Interrogation Hoax #18: The Final Pre-Trial Opportunities Which Knox Flunked

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Image of Judge Micheli who presided over the hearings that remanded Knox to trial.

    1. Overview Of The Interrogation Hoax Series

    In Post #1 there’s a long summary of what various courts concluded in sentencing Knox for calunnia to three years. 

    All 17 posts prior to this one are linked-to there. The first twelve posts cover the key parts of the trial testimony and evidence from investigators for the events at Perugia’s central police station on 5-6 November 2007.

    The next six including this show how Knox failed to convince numerous magistrates at many hearings that she was ever interrogated or abused or made to lie. For the most part in fact she did not even try. 

    2. The Six Pre-Trial Opportunities Which Knox Flunked

    The previous five posts and this one cover the six hearings from late 2007 to late 2008, any one of which was a big opportunity for Knox. She could have been released if the evidence was weaker and the arguments of herself and her legal team stronger.

    Knox blew all six opportunities. The judges were Claudia Matteini, Massimo Ricciarelli and two others, Torquato Gemelli and four others, and Paolo Micheli (this post). A total of 10 judges, and Dr Mignini. After the first two, one of Knox’s lawyers walked off the job.

    Those ignorant of the reports of these hearings (all but one newly translated for this series with the Micheli to come) often demonize the prosecutor, Dr Mignini, as somehow taking a harder line than all those judges.

    Really?

    Read all of the reports and in fact every one of those judges took a harder line than Dr Mignini who worked very hard to be fair. His early version of the attack on Meredith was of an almost accidental death with sexual humiliation in the course of a hazing.

    This went out the window, and all of the judges without exception adopted a harder position - that Knox’s anger had spiraled over Meredith’s difficulties with her, and a barbaric 15-minute torture-attack resulted in Meredith’s death which may have been premeditated in a timespan between minutes and days.

    Judge Matteini, Judge Ricciarelli, and Judge Micheli (see below) all flat-out warned that they considered RS and AK to be dangerous to others and that they needed to be kept locked up pending trial.  Judge Gemmelli and other Supreme Court judges endorsed this.

    Typically Knox was constrained by her lawyers to say little or nothing.

    They were already wrestling to try to wind back the three problematic statements she demanded to make on 5-6 November - mainly by changing the subject and aggressively attacking Guede. 

    She was allowed to be questioned by Judge Ricciarelli and she herself volunteered to be questioned by Dr Mignini three times, but her performances were shaky and erratic and once she seemed to break down in tears.

    There was little or no hint of the inflammatory claims which cost her three years which Knox came up with when she had to take the stand mid-2009 to try to defend her framing of Lumumba.

    3. Micheli Hearings September and October 2008

    This Sky News report describes how prior to the Micheli hearings Knox’s lawyers seemed pretty desperate to change the subject.

    Valter Biscotti and Nicodemo Gentile said they wanted Guede’s trial to be separate from that of Knox and Sollecito because they feared a pact against their client. Mr Biscotti added: “We feel the urgent need to have our trial heard independently of the other two suspects.

    In recent weeks a lot of poison has been spread by the defence teams and we feel the necessity to find some form of serenity in a separate hearing.  That’s why we have asked for a fast-track hearing just for our client and we want that hearing as quickly as possible.  At this hearing we will prove that our client has absolutely nothing to do with the tragic death of Meredith Kercher.”

    On 16 Sept 2008 Judge Micheli accepted the Guede team’s request for a fast-track trial and as the rules require moved all of the hearings behind closed doors.

    A fast-track proceeding is closed to the public, unlike a full trial. It will be held before the same judge, who is expected to issue the verdict at the time he decides whether to indict Knox and Sollecito. The rulings are expected next month.

    Judge Micheli had mountains of investigative reports and physical evidence to plow through. He heard witnesses in four hearings (with Meredith’s family present at several) on the DNA collection, on the character of Rudy Guede, and also on the three defendants acting menacing outside their house, which he heavily discounted.

    Late on 28 October Judge Micheli issued a 17-page ruling which includes almost no mention of Knox implicating Patrick. He convicted Guede of murder and sexual assault, and sentenced him to 30 years. He also ordered Knox and Sollecito to stand trial on charges of murder and sexual assault.

    As the UK Guardian and many other media reported, Judge Micheli assessed Knox and Sollecito as being dangerous. 

    The suspected killers of Meredith Kercher were refused transfer from jail to house arrest last night while awaiting trial for her murder, because of the danger that they might flee and kill again.

    After 12 hours’ deliberation in Perugia, the judge, Paolo Micheli, said there was a “concrete possibility” that Amanda Knox and her boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito would run off if freed from prison.

    In a written ruling to lawyers, he said he believed the murder of the British student was not premeditated, but the likely “absolute disregard” shown by Knox and Sollecito for the victim’s life meant they would be capable of murdering again….

    Turning down their request for house arrest yesterday, Micheli agreed with prosecutors that more than one person took part in the sexual assault and murder, dismissing claims that the 47 bruises and knife wounds on Kercher’s body could have been made by a single attacker.

    He upheld the testimony of a neighbour who heard more than one person fleeing Kercher’s house, adding that while footprints there might not definitely belong to Knox and Sollecito, they did indicate more than one attacker.

    He stood by forensic evidence indicating Kercher’s and Knox’s DNA on a knife found at Sollecito’s house which investigators suspect is the murder weapon, and ruled Sollecito’s DNA on Kercher’s bra strap as reliable evidence.

    On 30 October Judge Micheli was interviewed. No sign in this that any claim of unfairness to Knox was on his radar.

    4. Apparent False Claim Of A Statement By Knox

    Bearing in mind that these hearings were all behind closed doors, none of the Italian and English-language media reports including those of the New York Times make any mention at all of Knox testifying or answering questions. Nor do the books of Sollecito or John Follain.  We are still checking with Italy to make sure.

    To jump the gun on the series a bit, a probable non-statement by Knox morphed in Knox’s 2013 book into this heated claim below, which we have already been told, based on court transcripts and Judge Micheli’s immediate 17 page report, was definitely not what was said, if anything, in court.

    On October 28, the final day, I got to speak for myself. Since the judge understood English, I stood up without my interpreter and tried to explain what had happened during my interrogation. I told the judge that I hadn’t meant to name Patrick or to cause confusion but that the interrogation had been the most brutish, terrifying experience of my life. I’d been exhausted to begin with, and I had gotten so scared and confused that it was as though I went out of my mind. My interrogators told me that they had evidence I’d been at the villa, that Raffaele was no longer vouching for my whereabouts that night, that I had been through such a horrible trauma, I had amnesia. “I believed them! I’m innocent!” I cried.

    Posts #1 to #12 have shown that Knox experienced no “brutish, terrifying experience”. Trauma was inflicted only by Sollecito and then by Knox on herself. With high confidence, we can conclude that as so often in her book Knox was simply making this up. So much for Linda Kulman’s fact checking.

    5. The Micheli Sentencing Report Of January 2009

    Finally three months later Judge Micheli issued a sentencing report of about 100 pages. While it has still not been fully translated we did summarise it in four posts here.

    In the Italian original (which is equally firm to harsh on all three defendants) it is quite graphic about what the physical evidence says of the callous role of Knox and Sollecito in the torture-attack.

    Judge Micheli does note how often Knox and Sollecito help to destroy one another’s stories which numerous witnesses confirmed helped to spark Knox’s conniption and framing of Patrick.

    There is no mention at all of Knox taking exception to her “interrogation”.


    Tuesday, April 21, 2015

    The Certainties And Open Questions In The Amanda Knox Trial Starting In Florence On 9 June

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Dr Giuliano Giambartolomei prosecutes in both the Sollecito and Knox trials

    1. A Bizarre Crime

    What Knox will soon be on trial for is one of the most bizarre crimes conceivable.

    If you followed all the links in the post directly below this (with more to come soon) you will see that the evidence is overwhelming that Knox maliciously and self-servingly invented the Interrogation Hoax of 5-6 November 2007 for very little likelihood of benefit and with massive damage done to good people and the proud image of Italy.

    So what does Knox do? Learn anything? No. She serves three years for framing Patrick - and comes right out of prison to repeat more or less the self-same crime but this time on steroids. Passages in her book and claims in interviews were almost hysterically insistent, and the email she sent to Judge Nencini in December 2013 even more-so. In that email she actually ranted on about torture.

    And dozens of others in the US picked up on the false claims and, as Steve Moore and John Douglas and Bruce Fischer did, heavily embellished them. What Knox was convicted for is still right there on a dozen YouTubes all “helpfully” uploaded by Bruce Fischer. 

    Some few in Italy might have been undecided a month ago whether Sollecito was really there when Meredith was murdered. But nobody at all in Italy likes the dangerous and inflammatory campaign Knox has spearheaded.

    This really could be Knox’s OJ Simpson moment. This time she could face as much as six years, and the US would seem to have zero grounds to resist extradition.

    And as Knox was finally confirmed as sentenced for calunnia to the detriment of Lumumba by Cassation in 2013, left unaffacted by Cassation in 2015, Knox can no longer make any claim to have been induced to do so by the police and prosecution.

    If she has a viable defense nobody, repeat nobody, right now seems able to imagine it. 

    2. The Certainties

    The trial will begin on 9 June in the Florence courthouse in front of Judge Anna Liguori.  The lead prosecutor will be Dr Giuliano Giambartolomei who is also the chief prosecutor in the Sollecito & Gumbel book trial which convenes next on 30 April.

    While charges in the Sollecito & Gumbel trial are for diffamazione and vilipendio (slander of officials and of the system) the anticipated charges in the Knox case are for the more serious crime of calunnia (for accusing justice officials of crimes in court).

    For a very good reason, diffamazione and vilipendio and especially calunnia are taken more seriously in Italy than equivalent contempts in some other systems.

    This is because of a long-running (if declining) tendency for “connected” defendants to try to take the justice system down a peg in the hope of an unfair break in trials they or their unsavory buddies are in the midst of.

    3. The Open Questions

    The Knox book and email to Judge Nencini and TV claims cannot be a part of a calunnia case but certainly can be used as evidence of Knox’s disingenuousness and malice. To what extent this will happen is not clear yet, but signs are a lot of online evidence on these lines is being captured.

    Nor is it clear yet who will represent Knox. Possibly Ghirga and Dalla Vedova, but they may not be the “best” team for her as they are credited in Knox’s book for its content and they handed over as a court document the inflammatory Knox email to Judge Nencini. (Remember, Sollecito is not being defended in his trial by Bongiorno or Maori.) 

    Nor is it clear yet what line Knox’s defense may take. It is quite out of the question that she again simply repeats the claims that already cost her three years signed off on twice by Cassation. If Sollecito seems seriously stuck for a defense, Knox seems even more-so.

    Nor is it clear yet if the defense team will make an immediate bid to Cassation for dismissal. The Fifth Chambers which overturned the murder conviction is already deeply entangled and under scrutiny, and judges there may already be wondering if they have committed career suicide to very little real benefit for anyone.

    Also it is not clear yet how this will impact the pending trial of Curt Knox and Edda Mellas for diffamazione for repeating as gospel Knox’s false claims to a British reporter, and we dont know how this will impact Oggi’s trial for enthusiastically publishing some of Knox’s false claims.

    It is not clear yet how the Knox PR (if it is still active) or the pro-Knox opportunists or the highly confused US media will handle this - but to repeat as gospel any of Knox’s claims could from now on be legally radioactive.

    it is not clear yet how the Obama Administration will (if at all) react to this. Whether there will again be covert intervention, or whether they will finally concede that Italy did get it right and crimes should be paid for and not given a free pass. 

    Finally, will Knox again be a no-show in Florence, as she was (against her lawyers best advice) at her own appeal? And if so, will she and her forces again falsely claim that she is being tried in absentia? That wouldnt win her points in Italy.

    4. Further Background

    Click here:   1. Could The Italian Authorities Be Starting A Wave Of Libel + Slander Investigations?

    Click here:   2. Interrogation Hoax: Knox Hearing On Calunnia Charges, Then Trial To Resume June 16

    Click here:   3. Calunnia Claims At The Core Of The Problem For Amanda Knox - And Her Parents

    Click here:   4. Knox Calunnia Hearing: Amanda Knox Enters Court Via The Underground Entrance

    Click here:   5. Another In Seeming Never-Ending Disasters For Hapless Knox Campaign

    Click here:   6. A Perugian Media Report (Neutral As Usual) In Italian On Knox’s Calunnia Hearing

    Click here:   7. Curt Knox And Edda Mellas Defamation Trial To Go Ahead On July 4

    Click here:   8. Umbria’s Chief Prosecutor Will Proceed Against Knox And Sollecito And Also Aviello

    Click here:   9. The Curt Knox And Edda Mellas Diffamazione Trial Will Resume In Perugia 30 March.

    Click here:   10. False Allegations Against Italian Officialdom Sparking Increasingly Tough Legal Reaction

    Click here:   11. An Overview From Italy #2: Current Perceptions In Italy, Sollecito Case, Mignini’s Full Vindication

    Click here:   12. With Diffamazione Complaint Against False Claims In Oggi Knox’s Legal Prospects Continue To Slide

    Click here:   13. Expected Calunnia And Diffamazione Trials Could Reverse Another Attempt To Take Justice Down A Peg

    Click here:   14. Questions For Knox: Did You Undergo An Illegal Interrogation By Mignini Or Did You Try To Frame Him?

    Click here:   15. Desperate Ghirga Urges Amanda Knox To Show At Florence Appeal, But She’s Created More Problems

    Click here:   16. Pushback Against Mafia Playbook Gathers Speed With Denial Of False Accusation of “Satanic Theory

    Click here:   17. Why It Will Be Republic Of Italy v Knox And Sollecito For The Myriad False Claims They Have Made

    Click here:   18. False Claims By Amanda Knox & The Book Team May End Up Costing $10 Million


    Monday, March 23, 2015

    Did The State Department Offer Assurances To Knox She Never Would Be Extradited?

    Posted by Ergon



    US Sec of State Kerry (discussing Snowden) really needs extraditions to work

    1. Overview

    This is the first of two posts on the real source of an increasing flow of anonymous but seemingly official State Department claims that Knox’s extradition is not in the cards

    2. The Current Italy/US Extradition Treaty

    As repeatedly explained here by posting lawyers the Italy/US treaty is deliberately written to exclude any politics.

    If either nation has arrived at a guilty verdict of someone currently in the other nation by following its own laws, then the other nation deliberately has no legal option but to extradite them to serve their term.

    So far neither nation has ever refused to do what the treaty says and so far politics has never intervened. That helps both nations in pursuing other extradition cases around the world.

    3. Claims By An Anonymous Source

    “Will Amanda Knox Be Dragged Back to Italy in Murder Case?” This was by Nina Burleigh in a cover story in Newsweek on March 19, 2015 quoting an anonymous source.

    A State Department source tells Newsweek that diplomats in both Italy and the U.S. expect an extradition request to be denied: “I don’t think either Italy or the U.S. wants a major burr under our saddle in terms of relationships between our countries, and this would be that, if the Italians pushed it.” If they do, the source adds, there “is not any way” the U.S. will arrest Knox, nor will it have her declared a fugitive.

    The elected Italian government in Rome is separate from the judiciary, and traditionally the two branches do not have warm relations. “I know the Italian government was rolling its eyes” over the prospect of the case reaching this phase, the State Department source says, adding that Rome faces “a real political problem” if the judiciary requests extradition. The American diplomat predicts the Italian court won’t ask to extradite.

    It seems that ever since Amanda Knox was wrongfully acquitted by the Hellmann appeals court of Perugia in 2011 we have been inundated with unsourced reports that “the United States would never extradite Amanda Knox.

    Going back several years to the Daily Mail, Guardian, The Express and various American media, they all seemed to be reading from the same script:

    • She hadn’t received a fair trial.

    • American public opinion would “˜never allow her to be sent back”.

    • The Secretary of State would quietly prevail upon his counterpart in Italy to not request extradition.

    And, as the final appeal of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito came up to the last stretch it seemed that these same hacks were repeating the same talking points, even though much has changed since 2011.

    These were the basic points, reported over and over in the main stream media till it almost seemed like a guarantee. So I have been looking for the last three years to verify the truth of that. And, who made that promise, if any were made? These were the basic parameters of my search, and I had to tune out the background noise of “˜double jeopardy” and “˜dueling extradition experts”.

    Then I had to look for the “˜unnamed source” quoted in all the news reports.

    These possibilities came up: 

    • WA US Senator Maria Cantwell spoke to her colleague Sen. John Kerry of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee who spoke to his brother in law David Thorne, the former US Ambassador to Rome, who passed on a quiet message to the Italian Foreign minister. But would they ever speak on or off the record to reporters or like it very much if it was going to be bruited about?

    • Mid-level Friends Of Amanda Knox like Anne Bremner and Judge Heavey had received vague assurances from Senator Cantwell; somehow extrapolated as iron clad guarantee that Knox would never be extradited, never mind there has not been any precedent I can find that would apply to a similar case like this.

    • Someone in the Department of Justice and/ or State is feeding them shite.

    • The FOA are making it all up. That last was my favourite, given that they are led around by people like Steve Moore, Bruce Fischer, and J. Michael Scadron.


    4. My Search For The Truth

    This has been an interesting journey, and as always, things seem to just come together at the last moment. It has helped that I have been watching diplomatic activity up-close all my life.

    My father was in the Pakistani Foreign Service stationed in London, so, shortly after I was born, lived in the UK from age 0-3, then with the Pakistan Embassy in Tokyo from age 3-8. We were a cosmopolitan group of embassy brats going to St. Mary’s International School.

    My friends were American, Iranian, Turk, Indian, East German, Canadian, New Zealand, points all over. Their parents were all diplomats and I made lifelong friends. My father could have received a posting as assistant to the ambassador to Washington D.C. after that but fate prevailed as he’d been stationed out 8 years and had to be rotated back to Pakistan.

    Since that time I kept in touch with my friends and also developed this passion for International Relations and Geopolitics. Traveling to the US and other countries but also meeting over the internet, made many more friends at various levels of the State Department. Saw the changes there as respected career diplomats got replaced by interest groups and major donors to political parties. Such only went to choice postings, of course, but not second or third world countries, so I had many interesting discussions with them over the years.

    The Wikileaks cables were a revelation as Embassy intercepts showed the thousand different ways diplomacy led to but also tried to prevent, war. I’d been reading them ever since they first came out so started searching for links to secret discussions with Amb. Thorne. Couldn’t find anything except what already was reported, so reporter Andrea Vogt’s FOI request find was a goldmine:

    NEWLY RELEASED EMBASSY CABLES SHED LIGHT ON STATE DEPT HANDLING OF AMANDA KNOX CASE

    By Andrea Vogt

    FEBRUARY 13 “Newly released state department documents show the U.S. Embassy in Rome declared the Amanda Knox matter “Case Closed” in a cable to Washington just days after the American’s clamorous 2011 acquittal.  The memo reveals wishful thinking on the part of some U.S. diplomats, who were only too eager to see the thorny case come to a clean close.”

    In Update March 23, 2015 posted today, Andrea Vogt says this:

    In a 2011 Italian embassy cable released as part of several Freedom of Information Act requests I’ve filed on this case (first published Oct 11, 2011) [US] diplomats in Italy mistakenly thought Knox’s acquittal in 2011 would bring to a close this complex and divisive international case. Italy’s Court of Cassation would prove them wrong, overturning her Perugia acquittal and ordering a second appeal in a different venue (Florence) which ended last year with a guilty verdict.

    So is a political fix being attempted or already in? See my Part Two Conclusion to be posted next.


    Friday, March 20, 2015

    Why Rogue Juror Genny Ballerini Was So Confused About The Appeal: It Was NOT A 2nd Trial

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Umberto Brindani, the editor of the weekly Italian magazine Oggi

    1. Explaining The Broad Context

    A rogue juror has mischaracterized the outcome of the Nencini appeal in Oggi.

    Very odd, as the consequence of this very unusual action is that she could be charged with vilipendio, with an illegal action to poison public opinion to lean upon a court process to affect its outcome. To help explain what may be going on here, think of Italy as two factions.

    • A very large faction which is comparatively very law-abiding and very forgiving and which greatly admires Italian law enforcement and judges and prosecutors.

    • A relatively tiny faction consisting of such unsavory elements as corrupt politicians and businessmen, the mafias, rogue masons, satanists (yes there are some) and others who, by any means fair or foul, seek unfair breaks for themselves and their associates.

    The Perugia courts, being close to Rome, and the Florence courts, being very large and very competently staffed, have particular roles in matters of national-level justice. Anyone who manages to throw sand in the wheels of those court systems may have won one for some in the small and unsavory faction at the cost of the very large pro-justice faction.

    MP Rocco Girlanda is a great example of how this works. The member from Gubbio once of Berlusconi’s party used his parliamentary privilege to “check Knox’s conditions” in Capanne dozens of times. Apparently even the Knox-Mellases found Girlanda’s advances pretty creepy, and someone from the family is said to have headed for Italy in a hurry.

    Girlanda not only wrote a creepy book about Knox and took a creepy position on panels of the Italian-American Society in Rome which he once headed. He also tried to monkey with Meredith’s case by petitioning the President, and by attempting to reduce the national Department Of Justice budget. But some of his closest political colleagues from Gubbio are on trial now and may entangle him, and see Andrea Vogt’s tweet the other day that Florence prosecutors are investigating Girlanda, for corruption at a national level.

    The Sollecitos also incline toward murky incitement outside the courtroom. Think of the bag of cash the witness Aviello said was offered. Think of conversations caught on tape discussing the capturing of politicians who might lean on the Perugia justice officials. For this Vanessa lost her job and the Sollecitos may still face charges.

    The Sollecitos seem to have made a beeline in 2008 for Giulia Bongiorno, a longtime defender of some of those in the smaller faction, for her political clout, although some of her actions in handling the case, such as shrieking at Judge Nencini with a knife in her hand (the same judge who will execute Cassations decisions) seem daft in the extreme.

    The Sollecitos may - may - now be a party to some strange media developments in Italy, such as the fawning Porta a Porta show of a few days ago. 

    2. The Court Pressure Oggi Faces

    The editor of Oggi Umberto Brindani seems to take malicious glee in Oggi’s reports to its weekly readership that put Italian justice in a bad light, perhaps to bring Italian justice down a peg and win one for some in the small faction.

    Now although no other Italian media would risk repeating in Italian the lurid conspiracy theories of the Knox PR in English in the United States, Oggi did choose to go there - and was slapped with charges as a result.

    Our posts here and here explain how Brindani’s taunting has bitten him in the tail. Oggi quoted defamatory and inaccurate claims from Knox’s book which are a magnet for diffamazione and vilipendio charges, as Brindani found out.

    If Brindani goes down against the Bergamo prosecutor for this, as seem inevitable, both the Oggi house of cards and the Knox-Mellas-Sollecito house of cards are put at risk. Oggi may face fines and civil damages for a lot of Euros. More especially, Oggi’s credibility and future would take a knock.

    3. Enter The Rogue Juror

    This Daily Mail report is in fact 100% quoting the latest edition of Oggi. (Gee, thanks, Daily Mail; for obvious reasons Oggi try hard never to put their own scurrilous stories online.)

    Essentially Genny Ballerini is complaining that it was an unfair “trial” and she didnt see a case being made or a motive explained.

    On the face of it, this makes absolutely zero sense.

    What happened in Florence just over a year ago was an APPEAL by RS and AK, not a second trial. It was tightly focused only on a couple of points the defenses wanted to quibble about (unsuccessfully, as it happened).

    The prosecution presented next to nothing of the case it had already presented in great detail in 2009. There were no similar summations, no recreations of the attack on Meredith, no witnesses of its own examined in court, and almost no exhibits.

    And guess what? Genny Ballerini didnt even set eyes on Amanda Knox or Rudy Guede!!

    Working under strict instructions from Cassation, Judge Nencini guided his lay judges to examine and vote on ONLY the points the defense had tried to prove to their advantage.  They all knew, or should have known, even this rogue juror Genny Ballerini, that any attempt to act as a second trial jury on the lines of the Hellmann appeal jury would be illegal, and was not why they were sitting there.

    Unless she is seriously daffy the surprise surfacing of Genny Ballerini in Oggi of all places only makes sense in the light of what Part 1 above explained. Genny Ballerini seems to be being used to muddy the waters to the hoped-for advantage of some in the smaller faction. 

    4. The Guts Of Ballerini’s Claims  

    Our main poster Chimera checked out Genny Ballerini’s individual claims, and at that level also shows that Genny Ballerini is either out to lunch or working as a tool for Oggi and by extension some in the small faction.

    (1) The juror did not ‘‘help convict’’ Knox/Sollecito at the 2013/2014 Florence appeal.  The court merely confirmed the trial verdict of Giancarlo Massei (2009).

    (2) ‘‘She slams the prosecution’s case, citing questionable proof, flimsy evidence, and bizarre testimony’‘.  This was only a defence appeal, which is a HUGE detail to omit.

    When the defense files an appeal, essentially they are saying there is something wrong with the prosecution’s case as presented back at trial.  The prosecution PROVED their case, they don’t have to again.  So yes, the burden is on the defense.

    If she does not know this (and these comments may be deliberately misquoted), then Ms. Ballerini doesn’t understand the purpose of an appeal or her role in it.

    (3) Knox was 20 at the time of the murder, not 19.

    (4) The article says they served 4 years before being freed on appeal, but it leaves out the fact that they had been convicted at trial.  While technically correct, it implies something that is not the case.

    (5) The article says that Knox rebuilt her life finding love with Colin Sutherland, and working as a journalist.  While true, they were only recent developments (late 2014).  Knox had been released 3 years prior to that.

    (6) The appeal court reinstated the guilty verdict?  Wrong.  Again, the March 2013 Cassation ruling annulled Hellmann’s ruling, but it left Massei’s trial conviction intact. The appeal court actually confirmed it.

    In other words, AK and RS weren’t forced back to Florence for a new trial.  They themselves chose to redo their own appeal, rather than accept the 26 and 25 year sentences.  Big difference.

    (7) ‘‘The evidence is not there to inflict all these years in prison’‘?  Frightening, if she actually made these statements.  The appeals court is ONLY to look at errors, not to retry the case.  Did she not read her job description?

    (8) Ms. Ballerini says of Sollecito: What possible motive could he have for participating in that murder? 

    A better question would be: why he did refuse Judge Nencini’s invitation to testify?  Come on, he just did a freaking book tour.  And Ms. Ballerini was there in court ... did she not have an urge to ask him questions?

    (9) ‘‘She insisted that the 2 professional judges had not tried to sway the jury.’’  Can you think of why that may have done so? Perhaps back in late 2011?

    Part of me thinks this story is a plant, her words and conclusions sound almost verbatim from the FOAK crap that has been coming out for years.

    If it is true (a big if) it is frightening that someone so limited could be on a appeal jury.  Either she does not understand the purpose of an appeal, or she is being used as a sockpuppet.


    5. Present Conclusions

    This aint over. Investigators will already be checking out Genny Ballerini to see what makes her tick and decide if she should face charges. We will keep you posted.


    Genny Ballerini is the lay-judge on the left


    Monday, March 16, 2015

    Probable Final Cassation Ruling In 10 Days: Likely Scenario For The Immediate Future

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Italian Justice Minister Andrea Orlando with Prime Minister Matteo Renzi


    We reported previously that Prime Minister Renzi, the former mayor of Florence, has great trust in the court system there.

    Cassation is expected to rule on Knox’s and Sollecito’s separate appeals against the Florence outcome (in which they yet again not-too-subtly edge one another between themselves and the flames) on Wednesday or Thursday of next week.

    We have something of a consensus here upon what happens then and thereafter, with main inputs here from Italian watchers Popper and Yummi.

    1. Cassazione will probably merely announce that the affirmation of conviction by the Nencini appeal court is legitimate from the point of view of Italian law and there will be nothing significant said on the merits of the case.

    2. In final appeals Supreme Court justices simply confirm a sentence or not based exclusively on law points. The Cassazione motivation reports due within three months are not too important as they cannot be appealed anyway. A report may not be needed for extradition, the Massei + Nencini sentencing reports could be explanatory and legally correct enough in this case.

    3. The execution of this decision would then be over to the Florence courts. If the Nencini confirmation of verdict and sentence is affirmed it will probably then be over to Prosecutor Crini and Judge Nencini, and an arrest warrant for Sollecito would be immediate.

    4. There is a slight chance, perhaps 5% to 10%, that Sollecito might try to escape, as he seemed set on doing when he made it to the border on the same day as Judge Nencini’s 2014 ruling. On Italian TV he has been sounding very aggrieved with Amanda while not really winding back the strong case against himself. He lacks his passport and probably the secret stash of money to stay on the run indefinitely.

    5. An arrest warrant for Knox, the other defendant, would normally be issued as soon as possible. If she is still located in the US she could be rapidly arrested and put in a holding cell. Based on other examples it is possible that her physical return to Italy could take as long as nine months, though the treaty promotes a fast-track meaning not upward of three months.

    6. There is normally 45 days for the extradition papers/request from Dr Andrea Orlando, the Italian Minister of Justice, to be handed over by the Italian Embassy in Washington DC to the State Department, though there is allowance for that request time to be extended.

    7. The evidence of course really is overwhelming and no single proof of foul play has ever been proven. Italian justice officials have relevant information they could share privately, such as the corruption of the Hellmann appeal alleged by Judge Chiari, Prosecutor Comodi and others, and such as Knox’s unsavory drug record which is normally a big no-no for the State Department. 

    8. Comments made by the host and a magistrate on Italy’s Porta a Porta show last week suggests vagueness on the part of the Italian media and public about the Italy/United States extradition treaty. This treaty, which has always been faithfully observed previously by both countries, with no exceptions, is stark and minimalist and focuses on the paperwork and whether the national law was followed, as explained by lawyers James Raper and TomM. 

    9. Assuming their final conviction, Sollecito’s arrest and return to prison will drive Italian public opinion, dormant for years but stirring as the Porta a Porta show suggested, to demand a quick extradition of Knox, who was the flatmate of Meredith the victim and without whom no murder would have taken place.

    10. Probably very unlikely, but if there is sustained political resistance despite American media finally getting the facts right, the powers demanding extradition will build up immense pressure, and it will be world-wide pressure from the point of view of the US, not just Italy. All countries will be watching to see how the US behaves, and if their treaties are reliable or not.

    The US relies heavily on the Italian government, which is currently a very strong one, on many other matters, and it has other extradition cases worldwide in motion or anticipated (think Snowden in Moscow) so it will be almost certainly be faithful to legality and precedent.

    Knox smeared prison authorities in her book and directly caused the imprisonment of a drug-dealer which might be reasons she fears going back. Conceivably a negotiated outcome could result in Knox serving the rest of her time in an American prison to get round this. American prison? This would be nice for her family, but probably a lot less nice for Knox herself.

    Knox has long been the pawn of an ugly family and bunch of parasites. Dont totally rule out her simply hopping on a plane to pay her dues and get away from them.


    Friday, March 13, 2015

    Questons For Knox: Adding A Dozen More To The Several Hundred Knox So Far Avoided

    Posted by Chimera



    Knox during a pause in questioning at trial; her answers destroyed many Italians’ trust

    1. State Of Play On The Questions Front

    Sollecito and his father Francesco actually take questions without 99% of them being agreed-on in advance. 

    They evade a lot and lose a little but they also gain some points, unlike a seemingly terrified Knox and a seemingly terrified PR who now seem stuck in tongue-tied and consistently-losing modes.

    In Italy last night on the much-watched crime show Porta a Porta Francesco Sollecito had to go along with the official reconstruction of the prolonged pack attack on Meredith which rules out any lone wolf though he again maintained that Raffaele was not there.

    Not by any means does TJMK give Sollecito a pass. He WAS there at the attack, the evidence is very strong. And we do have many dozens of pending questions waiting for him to respond.

    But the truly evasive one is Amanda Knox. Previously helped by the fawning arm of the American press.

    2. Pending Questions We Have Already Asked

    These are ordered chronologically with the first questions, by Kermit in mid trial in 2009,  at the bottom of the list.

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Ted Simon Gone? With Legal And Financial Woes Will The Other Paid Help Stay

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Why Does Book Smear Others On Drug Use, Mischaracterize Your Own?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox and Sollecito: Why Claim Rudy Guede Did It Alone When So Much Proof Against?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: How Do You Explain That Numerous Psychologists Now Observe You Skeptically?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Ten Hard Questions That Knox Should Be Asked Monday On ITV’s Daybreak

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Why So Many False Claims In Accounts Of Your Visit To The House?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Why The Huge Lie About Your ZERO Academic Intentions In Europe?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Do You Think “False Memories Kassin” Framing Italians Yet Again Will Help?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Did You Undergo An Illegal Interrogation By Mignini Or Did You Try To Frame Him?

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: Diane Sawyer, How To Push Back Against The False Claims And Emotion

    Click here for: Questions For Sollecito And Knox and Enablers: Several Hundred On The Hard Evidence

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: The Questions That Drew Griffin On CNN Tonight SHOULD Have Asked

    Click here for: Questions For AK And RS From Barbie Nadeau As Knox Slander Trial Starts

    Click here for: Questions For Knox: (Powerpoints #11) 150 Hard Questions That You Incessantly Avoid

    3. My Own Dozen Questions More

    I have mentioned before my belief that Meredith Kercher’s attack and possibly death was premeditated, at least on the part of Amanda Knox.  Raffaele Sollecito, and Rudy Guede, while accomplices, and also liable, did not plan this out.

    Below is my own list of a dozen more hard questions Knox should be asked. This post focuses on questions that point towards forethought and premeditation.  And no, crying, having a fit, and refusing to answer just won’t do it.  An open challenge to not answer in a Hellmann-court-type wail.

    1. Keeping the ‘‘See you later’’ Text to Patrick

    You kept the message that you sent to Lumumba, which you wrote in Italian.  The literal translation from English implies that you actually intend to meet, rather than the English one that means a parting of ways.  As a language student, this common expression was likely one of the first things you learned, if you didn’t know already.

    At your voluntary questioning, of November 5th/6th, you give that message to the police, and claim it as proof that you left Raffaele’s apartment to meet him.  The police didn’t force this knowledge from you, rather you volunteered it after Raffaele withdrew your alibi.  Patrick was falsely arrested, due entirely to your statements, and that message.

    I considered, and rejected the idea that you might have kept the message in case Patrick might have wondered why you didn’t show.  If that were the case, you would have kept his message not to come in, and not your response.

    Here is the 2009 trial video, the relevant part starts at about the 7:30 mark.  At the 10:30 mark, she talks about the message. At 12:15, she says she doesn’t know how to delete sent messages.

    Question for Knox: Why did you keep Patrick’s message, if not to use later as a backup plan?

    2. The Lack of Videotaping for the ‘‘Interrogation’‘

    You and your supporters in the U.S. frequently complain that your November 5th/6th ‘‘interrogation’’ was never recorded.  You claim that if there was such a record, it would corroborate your claims, and prove you were beaten/smacked around/tortured.  A video would go both ways: it could either prove police brutality and misconduct, or it could definitively prove a suspect or witness was lying.

    Until that night, you claim nearly 50 hours of interrogation (see December 2013 email to Judge Nencini), yet none of it was recorded.  Odd, if you were the suspect all along.  Witness summaries routinely are not, but suspect interrogations almost always are, if only to cover the police officer’(s) butt(s).

    That night, when you said you witnessed a crime you did not report (Patrick attacking Meredith), your legal status changed from a witness to a possible suspect.  You were given a miranda warning, but still continued to talk.

    At this point with your new status, the police would have wanted to videotape or audio record any questionings.  And if they had, any claims of the ‘‘police beat me’’ would have been very easy to refute.  So, by staying away from the camera, it actually creates at least a bit of ambiguity, and gives some wiggle room, should you decide to make complaints later.  It turns an open-and-shut matter into your-word-against-theirs where you lose.

    Question for Knox: Did the police ever ask to videotape any of your ‘‘questionings’‘?  And if so, why did you refuse?

    3. Transporting Raffaele’s Knife to Your Apartment

    You and Raffaele were charged in addition to murder and sexual assault, with transport of a weapon, namely, a knife to your apartment and back.  Despite all the denials of your lawyers, it had Meredith’s DNA on the blade, and your DNA on the hilt (the infamous ‘‘double DNA knife’‘).  Most spontaneous violent crimes involve objects in the immediate area, such as the room, whereas this knife was taken from another location and brought to the crime scene.  Frankly, it reeks of pre-planning.

    I considered, and rejected the argument of needing protection.  Knox never claimed she felt unsafe walking around Perugia, heck she sleeps with random people there.  If she did feel afraid at times, many women just clench keys in their fists, for something like that.

    Even more disturbing, (as you admit you are a CSI fan) the knife was brought back to Raffaele’s apartment, cleaned with bleach, and put back.  Had the bleach actually destroyed all the DNA—it tends to miss DNA in cracks and grooves—it would have implicated Raffaele only, being his knife, and would not implicate you.  Rather than throw it away, like a ‘‘smart’’ killer would do, it is put back, where it is fairly easy to be found.

    Question for Knox: Why did you bring the knife from Raffaele’s apartment, if not to use against someone?

    Question for Knox: Why was the knife returned to Raffaele’s kitchen?  Were you hoping (as a fallback), that it might lead to him alone?

    4. The Staged Break-In

    You finally admitted, after long denying, that you staged an April Fool’s Day prank on April 1st, 2007, by simulating a burglary against a housemate.  You found it funny, while others found it disturbing.  However, in order to do such a prank, you needed to think in advance about how you wanted things to look. In short, this had to be planned out.

    Well, the November 1st ‘‘break-in’’ at your apartment when Meredith was killed, was ruled by the courts to be a staged burglary.  There are just too many holes in your story, and in the crime scene, to believe it was legitimate.

    But what is not clear, is whether the killers staged the burglary as a panicked response to Meredith’s death, or whether some of the details were worked out ahead of time.  And you had, as a prank, done this before.

    I considered, and rejected the claim that it was a real burglary.  However, Judges Micheli, Massei, Nencini and the Court of Cassation disagree, and they can summarize it better.

    Question for Knox: Did you think of simulating a break in at your home BEFORE or AFTER Meredith was murdered?

    5. Rudy Guede’s Involvement

    FoAK has long smeared Guede as a drifter, drug dealer, orphan, burglar, and many other things.  There was one bit of truth there: Guede had broken into at least one place, prior to Meredith’s death, although he had not been charged at the time.  He recently got his jail time extended though, as a result of this.

    Interestingly, while you claim to not know Guede, your book seems to include a lot of detail about him.  You knew he was interested you.  You say he had done a break in, and you had staged a break in.  You allege his was done in Perugia, while your prank was far away, in Seattle, where no police were involved.  And let’s be frank: men say dumb things to impress women.  What an interesting person to bring along.

    Question for Knox: Did you know about Guede’s prior break in BEFORE or AFTER Meredith was murdered?

    6. Turning Off the Cellphones (you and Raffaele)

    It is now common knowledge that most cellphones contain GPS that can track the movement of a user.  Police know this, and can often track suspects’ movements this way.  Smart people looking to avoid police attention have figured this out, and can turn their cell phones off (or leave them at home), to make their movements more ‘‘anonymous’‘.

    Even smarter police have now figured out that people know, and can now find out if turning off phones is routine, or just a one time thing.  Jodi Arias was caught out this way.  Thomasdinh (Dinh) Bowman was caught out this way. See this.

    You and Raffaele had never turned off your cellphones, but chose to (and together) the evening before Meredith was killed.

    You gave multiple excuses. (1) Sollecito says in his book it was so you could fool around undisturbed.  (2) You say in your book it was so you wouldn’t receive a message from Patrick if he changed his mind and wanted you to work.  (3) You said in your December 2007 questioning with Mignini that it was done to preserve the charge in your phone.  (4) At trial, your lawyers disputed that the phones were shut off?

    Question for Knox: Why did you and Raffele turn off your phones the night Meredith died, if not to cover your movements?

    7. Ditching Meredith’s Phones

    Meredith’s phones, both her English and Italian phones, were found well away from the home.  While it is normal to have a cell phone, very few people have more than one, and other than a friend, family member, or roommate, who would know this?  Meredith’s attackers took them both, and rather try to sell them or use them, dumped them.

    Police have speculated that this was done to divert attention, and to give out false leads.  However, this amount of thought in a ‘‘hurried and rushed’’ crime seems very much out of place.  The unexpected consequence is that it helped narrow the focus.

    I considered, and rejected the idea that they were part of an actual robbery.  A killer who seems to know so much about evidence, and about cell phone evidence, would take them, knowing the GPS would help track his movements.  Really, what smart killer would take a mobile ‘‘ankle bracelet’’ with him?

    Question for Knox: Why did you take Meredith’s phones, if not to throw off the police investigation?

    8. Keeping Frederico Martini’s Number in Your Phone

    It is now well known, even if not reported at the time, that Frederico Martini (a.k.a. the ‘‘Cristiano’’ in your book), was a drug dealer you met on the train to Perugia.  You ditched your sister, Deanna, to be with him.  And since then, he had been supplying you with free drugs in return for sex.

    It is also well known that you gave Frederico’s number to police, probably trying to divert attention from yourself once again, and that he ended up serving time for drug dealing.

    You have enough sense to turn your cell phone off prior to phones (see sections 1, 6, and 7), so you clearly knew that phones can provide serious evidence against you.  If you truly were worried about the police searching your phone, you could have deleted his number, changed a digit or 2, changed the name, or otherwise hidden that information.

    The police weren’t concerned with drugs, only with catching a killer. 

    Question for Knox: Why did you keep Freddy’s number, and then give it to police, other than just another diversion tactic?

    9. The Lamp From Your Room on Meredith’s Floor

    The lamp from your room, the only source of light in your room, was found on the floor in Meredith’s room.  This would seem odd, as Meredith had two lamps of her own, and your room would be left dark.  Police have speculated that the lamp was used during the clean-up, and then forgotten.

    This demonstrates a lot of control, as rather than grabbing an available lamp from Meredith’s room (if it were needed for cleanup), the killers would have moved outside the bedroom, grabbed a lamp from another room and brought it back.

    It further demonstrates control, as there was no bloody footprints into your room.  Therefore, the killer must have cleaned his or her feet, then gone into your room to grab the lamp.  And that lamp was found wiped off prints, so whoever took it had the foresight to make sure their own weren’t on it, but had Meredith’s lamp been used, finding it wiped clean would have been a dead give away.

    All of this smacks of planning, and had the lamp not been forgotten in the locked room, we would never have known any of this.

    Question for Knox: Why was your lamp found on Meredith’s floor, if not to clean or search for evidence?

    10. Gloves Used for Cleanup?

    The police went through the house.  Although they did not test everything, very few fingerprints were found at all in the house, and only one belonging to Knox, on a glass.  Of course, it raises the question of why any random burglar or killer would do that, and points to someone who is there regularly—a resident.

    Such an undertaking would have taken a long time, again, pointing to a resident of the building.  And while a sock or a cloth may be used a few times, it seems extremely impractical to use for any length of time.  That leads another obvious suggestion: gloves.

    However, Perugia was still warm.  Amanda, (in that God-awful interview with Simon Hattenstone), said that she could sunbathe in October.  Even if she had them in her luggage, they would probably take time to find.  She was not known for wearing gloves as a fashion accessory.

    Given her living habits, it is extremely unlikely she had her own cleaning gloves, and Laura and Filomena never reported such things missing.  Nor did anyone else.  So, where would they come from?

    Question for Knox: Did you purchase (or steal) gloves prior to Meredith’s death?

    11. Clothes and Supplies

    You were seen in Quintavalle’s shop first thing in the morning on November 2nd, even if your lawyers contest it.  He claims you were looking in the cleaning section, but then left.  Strange, as you are not much of a cleaner, however he has no reason to lie.  You also claim that you were not ‘‘missing’’ any clothes, even though Filomena mentions a sweater you were wearing but has not been recovered.

    It is also known that you have made many cash withdrawls in the month of October, with seemingly little to spend on.  Police and the media have speculated drugs, but with absolutely no paper trail, there is no way to know for sure how much was spent on what.

    Question for Knox: Did you purchase any cleaning supplies, or extra clothes, either before or after Meredith’s murder?

    12. Concerning The Gubbio Trip

    You have travelled to many places, sure, but hadn’t really gone anywhere after settling in Perugia.  Yes, you had given serious thought to ditching the town, even buying a ticket to China.  Since meeting Raffaele, you two had kept in a relatively small area.  Therefore, the trip planned to Gubbio, for the day after Meredith was killed, seems somewhat out of place.

    I may very well be wrong, but was this the first road trip you had taken with him?  You hadn’t packed anything, and you left your house (after the shower) without taking anything.  You apparently also didn’t notice Filomena’s broken window in front of you.

    Question for Knox: Was the Gubbio trip for real, or was this a staged cover?


    Wednesday, March 11, 2015

    Precise Reasons For Arrests Of Sollecito, Lumumba And Knox On 6 Nov 2007

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    From the east. Foreground, Perugia’s main courts, background judges & prosecutors’ offices

    1. The Warrant For Three Arrests

    This key document has now been obtained and translated and included in the Wiki casefile. Some context is offered in Part 2.

    The arrest warrant was drafted and signed by Dr Mignini. He did so in the prosecutors’ offices in Perugia’s central courthouse (image at top) at 8:40 am.

    Note that, critically, it includes reference to Knox’s spontaneous chatter and her knowledge of the dynamics of the crime.

    PUBLIC PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE, COURT OF PERUGIA

    N. 19738/07 R.G. Mod. 44

    DETENTION ORDER ISSUED BY THE PUBLIC PROSECUTOR

    (artt. 384, comma 1 c.p.p)

    TO THE JUDGE OF PRELIMINARY INVESTIGATION OF THE COURT OF PERUGIA

    The public prosecutor Dr. Giuliano Mignini

    Based on the records of the above-mentioned proceeding;

    Having found that there are serious indications of the crimes of complicity in aggravated murder Article 576 n.5 c.p.e. and sexual assault for which we are proceeding, against DIYA Lumumba, born in Kindu (Zaire) on 5.05.1969, KNOX Amanda Marie and SOLLECITO Raffaele, already identified, for the following reasons:

    Regarding KNOX and DIYA, the first made glaringly contradictory and not credible statements during the investigation. In particular KNOX claimed to have spent the night between November 1st and 2nd in the company of SOLLECITO Raffaele whom she met a few days before the event while he, after initially confirming the statements made by KNOX, confessed to have lied instructed by KNOX and made clear that he separated from KNOX at 21.30 of November 1st 2007, remaining at his house where he received a phone call from his father on the land line at 23:30.

    Furthermore from the data relating to the phone traffic of the number 3484673590 in use by KNOX there emerges a lack of phone traffic from 20:35 of November 1st to 12:00 November 2nd. Same lack of phone traffic from 20:42 of November 1st to 06:02 of November 2nd is found in the phone traffic of 3403574303 in use by SOLLECITO Raffaele.

    At 20:35 of November 1st was found an outgoing text message from the number 3484673509 belonging to KNOX sent to 3387195723 belonging to the co-defendant PATRICK to whom she communicates “see you later” which confirms that in the following hours KNOX was together with DIYA in the apartment where the victim was.

    KNOX, in the statement made today has, in the end, confessed the dynamics of the committed crimes against KERCHER: the accused, in fact, first claimed to have met with DIYA, as communicated to him with the text message found in the phone memory of her cell phone by the operating Postal Police, text message sent at 20:35 in reply to a text message from DIYA sent at 20:18, detected thanks to the analysis of the phone traffic related to KNOX.

    This last text message is not present in the cell phone memory.

    KNOX in her witness statement from today has then confessed that, meeting DIYA in the basketball court of Piazza Grimana, she went together with DIYA to Meredith’s house, where DIYA, after having sex with the victim, killed her.

    The sexual intercourse must be deemed violent in nature considering the particularly threatening context in which it took place and in which KNOX has surely aided DIYA.

    In addition to this it should be pointed out that KNOX, in her spontaneous declarations from today, has consistently confirmed to have contacted DIYA, to have met with him on the night between November 1st and 2nd and to have gone with him to the apartment where the victim lived. She then said that she stayed outside of Meredith’s room while DIYA set apart with her and also added that she heard the girl’s screams.

    KNOX reported details that confirm her own and Sollecito Raffaele’s involvement in the events, like the fact that after the events she woke up in the bed of the latter.

    As far as the essential facts against SOLLECITO there are numerous verifiable inconsistencies in his first declarations, in respect to the last ones and the fact that, from a first inspection, the print of the shoe found on SOLLECITO appears to be compatible in its shape with the one found on the crime scene.

    Moreover, there is the fact that KNOX claimed to not remember what happened between the victim’s screams up until she woke up in the morning in SOLLECITO’s bed, who was also found in possession of a flick knife that could abstractly be compatible for dimension and type (general length of 18cm, of which 8,5 blade), with the object that must have produced the most serious injury to the victim’s neck.

    Having considered all the elements described and all converging findings of the intense and detailed investigations conducted after the discovery of Kercher’s body and culminating with the confession and indicated complicity of DIYA, also known as “Patrick” by KNOX, there is substantial serious evidence of the crimes for which we are proceeding to allow the detention, given the limits of the sentence.

    Likewise there must be considered a founded and valid danger of flight especially for DIYA since he is a non-EU citizen and in consideration of the specific seriousness and brutality of the crimes, especially that of sexual violence and the possibility of the infliction of a particularly heavy sentence.

    In regards to KNOX she has shown a particular ruthlessness in lying repeatedly to the investigators and in involving in such a serious event the young SOLLECITO.

    Having regard to Art.384 comma 1 c.p.p.

    ORDERS

    The detention of DIYA Lumumba, KNOX Amanda Marie and SOLLECITO Raffaele, already identified, and to be taken to the local District Prison.

    We proceed to request validation of the detention in the separate document.

    Forward to the Secretary area of authority with regard to recognition of Diya Lumumba and Amanda Marie Knox, born in Washington (USA) on 07/09/1987, based in Perugia, Via della Pergola 7, and Raffaele Sollecito, also already identified.

    Perugia, November 6th 2007, h.8,40

    PUBLIC PROSECUTOR

    (DR. GIULIANO MIGNINI)

    2. The Context Of The Arrests

    Knox had turned up at the central police station unannounced, apparently to keep tabs on RS. After a delay in finding something for her to do, and in getting the interpreter by her side, she sat with Rita Ficarra building a list of possible perps with phone numbers and residences on maps.

    Having been told in a rather low-key way that Sollecito had just said she was not with him on the fateful night for several hours, and she had made him lie (see the post just below), there was a tension-filled pregnant pause while Knox apparently racked her brains for a Plan B.

    By 1.45 AM, having explosively fingered Patrick when a message to him fortuitously showed up on her mobile phone, and after considerable spontaneous chatter, she had insisted on writing and signing this statement.

    Three hours later Dr Mignini had arrived and discussed this development with others. Then he advised Knox of her rights, including the right to have her lawyer there.

    Heedless of that advice, after more spontaneous chatter (actually referred to in the arrest warrant below), Knox insisted on writing and signing this statement while all the court officers sat idly by.


    Friday, March 06, 2015

    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #8: Passages For Which Gumbel & Sollecito Are Charged

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters




    1. Outcome Of Thursday Session In Court

    That image above is of Sollecito arriving from his cell in Capanne Prison back in 2008.

    The next session of the trial of Sollecito and Gumbel will be in open court for the first time. All Italy will finally KNOW some of what the pair claimed. Finally they will be able to judge the heated claims - seemingly intended to illegally inflame American public opinion to lean on the Italian court.

    And as the next court session will fall after Cassation rules finally on his appeal against his lost Florence appeal for the murder of Meredith, we could see Sollecito once again arrive in court from behind bars.

    This slight delay in the book trial beyond the Supreme Court ruling due late March (25th or thereafter) was the only real outcome from the final closed session yesterday of the Florence court.

    Sollecito’s lawyer Alfredo Brizioli and Gumbel’s lawyer Francesca Bacecci, in creating a pretty meaningless fuss over the translation of passages where the malicious intent to inflame American public opinion is almost impossible to miss, even with Google Translate, simply bought Sollecito time beyond Cassation’s cold gaze on 25th March. The new translation is due on 10 April, and 30 April will be the pair’s next day in court. 

    2. Selection Of Passages The State Disputes

    Picking passages in the book against which to lodge diffamazione and villipendio charges is like shooting fish in a barrel, as we showed in this post in April last year. That was twenty inflammatory charges in a mere half a dozen pages.

    Targeted for the moment are the seven passages quoted in Part 3 below. They might be the first of several waves of passages against which diffamazione and villipendio charges are brought, as only one complainant (Dr Mignini) has so far asked the court to act, as he was required to do.

    Many other people are talked about highly disparagingly in the Sollecito and Gumbel book too. See these examples, out of dozens, which are not yet the subject of a charge:

    Our interrogators resorted to time-honored pressure techniques practiced by less-than-scrupulous law enforcement and intelligence agencies around the world. They brought us in at night, presented us with threats and promises, scared us half senseless, then offered us a way out with a few quick strokes of a pen.

    Napoleoni was in the room for this part of the conversation. Without warning, she turned on me with venom in her voice. “What did you do?” she demanded. “You need to tell us. You don’t know what that cow, that whore, got up to!”

    “Don’t I have the right to a lawyer?” I asked.  They said no. “Can’t I at least call my father?” “You can’t call anyone.” They ordered me to put my cell phone on the desk.

    At one point, I found myself alone with just one of the policemen. He leaned into me and hissed, “If you try to get up and leave, I’ll beat you into a pulp and kill you. I’ll leave you in a pool of blood.”

    The rounds of questioning began all over again: “Tell us what happened! Did Amanda go out on the night of the murder? Why are you holding out on us? You’ve lost your head per una vacca””for a cow!”

    As Amanda’s questioning continued, Prosecutor Mignini himself decided to take charge. He arrived at the Questura in the dead of night, apparently after being informed that Amanda had “broken,” and pressed her for a full confession. Again, Amanda was in floods of tears. Again, she was gesticulating with her hands and bringing them to her head””a detail that seemed particularly fascinating to Mignini, perhaps because hitting oneself in the head is sometimes associated with Masonic initiation rites.

    Regarding that last claim Dr Mignini was not even there.

    3 The Current Targets Of The Florence Court

    Phrases of Sollecito and Gumbel (probably all or mostly of Gumbel) that look especially inflammatory and dishonest and very unlikely to be true are highlighted here.

    Passage 1: Page 75

    The main evidence Mignini had to take into the preliminary hearing was my Nikes, and he did everything he could to make them as incriminating as possible. Hours after my interrogators ordered me to take the shoes off, they were examined by a forensic team from Foligno. But the Foligno police were relatively cautious: in the official report they produced that same day, they said they could make no more than a partial comparison with the clearest of the prints left in blood in Meredith’s room and could comment only on the rough size and shape of the shoe, nothing more. Still, they concluded that my shoes “could have”Â created the footprints found at the crime scene.

    Mignini was not satisfied, no doubt because the finding was couched in all sorts of caveats; the Foligno police stressed that the match was a theoretical possibility only. So the next day Mignini went to the Polizia Scientifica in Rome for a second opinion. They had even less information to go on than the Foligno team because they had only photographs of my shoes, not the shoes themselves. Somehow, though, they came to the much more definitive conclusion that my Nikes were the same make, model, and shoe size as the print on Meredith’s floor. No question about it.

    Dr Mignini had no vested interest in the outcome of the shoe. There was a ton of other evidence which was accepted by the Matteini and Ricciarelli courts and Cassation to keep Sollecito locked up.

    Passage 2: Pages 101-102

    The prosecution’s tactics grew nastier, never more so than when Amanda was taken to the prison infirmary the day after Patrick’s release and told she had tested positive for HIV.

    She was devastated. She wrote in her diary, “I don’t want to die. I want to get married and have children. I want to create something good. I want to get old. I want my time. I want my life. Why why why? I can’t believe this.”Â

    For a week she was tormented with the idea that she would contract AIDS in prison, serving time for a crime she did not commit. But the whole thing was a ruse, designed to frighten her into admitting how many men she had slept with. When asked, she provided a list of her sexual partners, and the contraceptive method she had used with each. Only then was she told the test was a false positive.

    To the prosecution, the information must have been a disappointment: seven partners in all, of whom four were boyfriends she had never made a secret of, and three she qualified as one-night stands. Rudy Guede was not on the list, and neither was anyone else who might prove useful in the case. She hadn’t been handing herself around like candy at Le Chic, as Patrick now alleged. She’d fooled around with two guys soon after arriving in Italy, neither of them at Patrick’s bar, and then she had been with me. Okay, so she was no Mother Teresa. But neither was she the whore of Babylon.

    To compound the nastiness, the list was eventually leaked to the media, with the erroneous twist that the seven partners on the list were just the men she’d had since arriving in Perugia. Whatever one thought of Amanda and her free-spirited American attitude toward sex, this callous disregard for her privacy and her feelings was the behavior of savages.

    It was in fact Knox’s idea to write the list of partners, and her own team’s idea to do the malicious leak. Police and prosecution had zero role.

    Passage 3. Page 146-147

    When my defense team examined the official paperwork, they noticed that the analysis of the footprints - including extensive inquiry into the length and shape of the foot likely to have produced them - had been conducted by two members of the Polizia Scientifica in Rome, working not in their official capacity but as private consultants charging thousands of euros to Mignini’s office. One of the analysts, Lorenzo Rinaldi, was a physicist, not a specialist in anatomy, and the other, Pietro Boemia, was a fingerprint technician with no further scientific credentials. That begged the question: if Mignini’s office felt it needed to contract the job out to private consultants, why wouldn’t it go to people with more pertinent qualifications? The whole thing stank.

    We were stunned, too, to discover that some of the most important parts of the evidence were not handed over at all. We were given a document detailing the Polizia Scientifica’s conclusions about the DNA evidence on the knife and the bra clasp, but we had none of the raw data, nothing that would enable us to make our own independent evaluation. We put in a request for the data and, when it was rejected, filed another. The DNA evidence was now the bedrock of the case against me. What possible motivation could there be to withhold it?

    The defenses had witnesses present at every single test. They made no complaints. And the Hellmann court record showed that all DNA data was in fact handed over, as the consultants C&V had to conceed.

    Passage 4: Page 176-177

    One of the reasons our hearings were so spread out was that Mignini was fighting his own, separate legal battle to fend off criminal charges of prosecutorial misconduct. He and a police inspector working on the Monster of Florence case stood accused of intimidating public officials and journalists by opening legal proceedings against them and tapping their phones without proper justification.

    To Mignini, the case smacked of professional jealousy because the prosecutors in Florence resented his intrusion on a murder mystery they had struggled for so long to resolve. But Mignini’s behavior had already attracted international condemnation, never more so than when he threw the journalist most indefatigably devoted to following the Monster case, Mario Spezi, into jail for three weeks. Spezi had ridiculed Mignini’s theories about Francesco Narducci, the Perugian doctor whom Mignini suspected of being part of a satanic cult connected to the killings.

    In response, Mignini accused Spezi himself of involvement in Narducci’s murder - even though the death had been ruled a suicide. It was a staggering power play, and the international Committee to Protect Journalists was soon on the case. Spezi was not initially told why he was being arrested and, like me, was denied access to a lawyer for days. Even Mignini, though, could not press murder charges without proving first that a murder had taken place, and Spezi was eventually let out.

    I firmly believe that our trial was, among other things, a grand diversion intended to keep media attention away from Mignini’s legal battle in Florence and to provide him with the high-profile court victory he desperately needed to restore his reputation. Already in the pretrial hearing, Mignini had shown signs of hypersensitivity about his critics, in particular the handful of English-speaking investigators and reporters who had questioned his case against us early on. He issued an explicit warning that anyone hoping he would back off the Meredith Kercher case or resign should think again. “Nobody has left their post, and nobody will,”Â he said. “Let that be clear, in Perugia and beyond.”Â

    Just as he had in the Monster of Florence case, Mignini used every tool at his disposal against his critics and adversaries. He spied on my family and tapped their phones. He went after Amanda not just for murder, but also for defaming Patrick Lumumba - whom she had implicated under duress and at the police’s suggestion. He opened or threatened about a dozen other legal cases against his critics in Italy and beyond. He charged Amanda’s parents with criminal defamation for repeating the accusation that she had been hit in the head while in custody. And he sued or threatened to sue an assortment of reporters, writers, and newspapers, either because they said negative things about him or the police directly or because they quoted others saying such things.

    Mignini’s volley of lawsuits had an unmistakable chilling effect, especially on the Italian press, and played a clear role in tipping public opinion against us. We weren’t the only ones mounting the fight of our lives in court, and it was difficult not to interpret this legal onslaught as part of Mignini’s campaign to beat back the abuse-of-office charges. His approach seemed singularly vindictive. Not only did we have to sit in prison while the murder trial dragged on; it seemed he wanted to throw our friends and supporters - anyone who voiced a sympathetic opinion in public - into prison right alongside us.

    Dr Mignini was facing mild charges for what in fact judges had okayed and for which prison or a career fall were never in the cards. Over a year before the book was written, Dr Mignini’s total rebound and promotion after Cassation sharply repudiated a rogue prosecutor and judge in Florence had been widely reported upon. It is also widely known now that Spezi and Preston were mounting a malicious self-serving hoax.

    Passage 5: Page 185

    One other strange thing: Amanda and I were on trial for sexual assault, yet Stefanoni confirmed that a stain on Meredith’s pillowcase that looked a lot like semen was never tested in her lab. She made all sorts of excuses about how testing it might compromise the lab’s ability to use the pillowcase for other things. The semen might well be old, she added, the result of Meredith’s consensual sexual relations with Giacomo Silenzi.

    This seemed extraordinary to my defense team, so much so that we asked for - and obtained - permission to inspect the pillowcase ourselves and soon discovered signs of semen on one of Guede’s shoe prints. How could the prosecution have missed this? If the semen was fresh when Guede stepped on it, that meant it must have been produced on the night of the murder. We thought long and hard about demanding a full analysis, but we did not trust the Polizia Scientifica as far as we could spit and were deathly afraid they might choose to construe that the semen was mine. So we held back.

    The is hardly what the Scientific Police - a much-trusted collaborator of the FBI - are known for. All tests are done with defense witnesses there.

    Passage 6: Page 216-217

    As it turned out, Massei may not have been entirely correct to say there was no evidence that DNA results were used to fit a predetermined story line. Giuliano Mignini, of all people, had given a television interview a couple of months earlier in which he stated quite openly that he was looking for a certain result from the kitchen-knife analysis.

    Mignini was asked by a special correspondent for the show L’altra metà   del crimine (The Other Half of the Crime) how he could be so sure my knife was the murder weapon when the DNA readings had come back “too low”Â and did not appear to conform to international standards. Mignini stuttered and danced around the question before replying in gloriously convoluted Italian, “Ho ottenuto di farlo risultare.”Â I managed to get it to come out right.

    Never happened. As Cassation noted these so-called “international standards” which the consultants C&V misled the court about are simply a myth. The C&V laboratory and methods were disparaged by the Carabinieri lab in 2013.

    Passage 7: Page 219-222

    My family was not beating up on Amanda entirely without cause. What I did not know at the time, because they preferred not to fill me in, was that they were exploring what it would take for the prosecution to soften or drop the case against me. The advice they received was almost unanimous: the more I distanced myself from Amanda, the better. The legal community in Perugia was full of holes and leaks, and my family learned all sorts of things about the opinions being bandied about behind the scenes, including discussions within the prosecutor’s office. The bottom line: Mignini, they were told, was not all that interested in me except as a gateway to Amanda. He might indeed be willing to acknowledge I was innocent, but only if I gave him something in exchange, either by incriminating Amanda directly or by no longer vouching for her.

    I’m glad my family did not include me in these discussions because I would have lost it completely. First, my uncle Giuseppe approached a lawyer in private practice in Perugia - with half an idea in his head that this new attorney could replace Maori - and asked what I could do to mitigate my dauntingly long sentence. The lawyer said I should accept a plea deal and confess to some of the lesser charges. I could, for instance, agree that I had helped clean up the murder scene but otherwise played no part in it. “He’d get a sentence of six to twelve years,”Â the lawyer said, “but because he has no priors the sentence would be suspended and he’d serve no more jail time.”Â

    To their credit, my family knew I would never go for this. It made even them uncomfortable to contemplate me pleading guilty to something I had not done. It was, as my sister, Vanessa, put it, “not morally possible.”

    The next line of inquiry was through a different lawyer, who was on close terms with Mignini and was even invited to the baptism of Mignini’s youngest child that summer. (Among the other guests at the baptism was Francesco Maresca, the Kerchers’ lawyer, who had long since aligned himself with Mignini in court.) This lawyer said he believed I was innocent, but he was also convinced that Amanda was guilty. He gave my family the strong impression that Mignini felt the same way. If true - and there was no way to confirm that - it was a clamorous revelation. How could a prosecutor believe in the innocence of a defendant and at the same time ask the courts to sentence him to life imprisonment? The lawyer offered to intercede with Mignini, but made no firm promises. He wasn’t willing to plead my cause, he said, but he would listen to anything the prosecutor had to offer.

    Over the late spring and summer of 2010, my father used this lawyer as a back channel and maneuvered negotiations to a point where they believed Mignini and Comodi would be willing to meet with Giulia Bongiorno and hear what she had to say. When Papà   presented this to Bongiorno, however, she was horrified and said she might have to drop the case altogether because the back channel was a serious violation of the rules of procedure. A private lawyer has no business talking to a prosecutor about a case, she explained, unless he is acting with the express permission of the defendant. It would be bad enough if the lawyer doing this was on my defense team; for an outside party to undertake such discussions not only risked landing me in deeper legal trouble, it also warranted disciplinary action from the Ordine degli Avvocati, the Italian equivalent of the Bar Association.

    My father was mortified. He had no idea how dangerous a game he had been playing and wrote a letter to Bongiorno begging her to forgive him and stay on the case. He was at fault, he said, and it would be wrong to punish her client by withdrawing her services when I didn’t even know about the back channel, much less approve it. To his relief, Bongiorno relented.

    My family, though, did not. Whenever they came to visit they would suggest some form of compromise with the truth. Mostly they asked why I couldn’t say I was asleep on the night of the murder and had no idea what Amanda got up to.

    Sollecito himself had for years kept Knox at extreme arms length, mirroring his family, implying Knox was more guilty than he, though irrevocable evidence ties him to the scene of the crime too.  He was never ever seen to stand up for her like this. Mignini and Comodi had NOT ONE CONVERSATION on these lines.  Apart from the case against Sollecto being strong, no prosecutor in Italy has any power to “do a deal” or allow a perp to “cop a plea”. To prosecutors’ own great relief, for protection these powers reside ONLY in the hands of a judge.


    Saturday, February 28, 2015

    Revenge Of The Knox: How Knox’s Body Of Lies Headed For The Dark Side (Series Overview)

    Posted by Chimera



    Also Implacably Nasty: Star Wars’s Anakin Skywalker’s Yellow Sith Eyes As He Moves To The Dark Side

    1. A Thematic Overview

    Our complete analysis of of Knox’s perversions of truth in Waiting to be Heard will go live here on a new page in due course.

    Meanwhile, please reflect upon this summary.  A taste of things to follow. Our survey of Sollecito’s book will also go live in due course. Here is one previous review of that book.

    Plots fit for Hollywood (a fictional film, and a fictional book)?

    (a) Consider this screenplay for Star Wars III, Revenge of the Sith

    Fiction: Anakin Skywalker is a hero of the Republic, Jedi Knight, and well respected warrior.  He fought for the forces of good, risking his life many times in the process.

    Without much reason or plausibility he becomes the evil Sith Lord, Darth Vader.  He then departs from his good self, and goes on a homicidal rampage through his old home, slaughtering many, and helping destroy the Republic.

    Reality: Skywalker had many emotional and anger issues, was power hungry, controlling, and had gone on a previous murderous rampage.

    (b) Consider this screenplay for Waiting to be Heard by Amanda Knox.

    Fiction: Amanda Knox is attending school in Seattle, with ambitions to travel, discover herself, and work professionally as a translator.  Without much reason or plausibility, she is convinced to start engaging in casual sex, throwing all her ambitions away for some thrills.

    It ends with the coincidental murder of her roommate, and the misery and destruction it would bring down on her family, and Italians who would rather rely on prejudice than admit they were wrong.  And of course, there was never any evidence against her.

    Reality: Knox was known in Seattle for a stormy childhood, casual sex, drugs and alcohol before going to Italy.  Knox could be controlling, narcissistic, and show a mean streak. 

    She got arrested for a rock throwing riot, staged a prior break-in as a ‘‘prank’‘, and published a rape story on MySpace.

    She went to Italy without a plan or direction and her drug use increased further. Police knew that she slept with one drug dealer in return for free drugs and because of her trail to him caused his incarceration.

    Her behaviour was not received well in Italy, especially by the women she lived with, and she felt herself shut out and isolated, with no real friends.  Knox was upstaged by a roommate who was far more serious, driven, and likeable.

    In 2007 Knox floundered. She was clearly headed toward a confession or self-incrimination when her lawyers stopped her 17 December interview.

    Through 2008 Knox’s tendency to lie was increasing and her lawyers held her back and distanced themselves from certain statements.

    In mid 2009 she seriously escalated. Adopting a hard sarcastic voice on the witness stand, she did not appear truthful to most of watching Italy, and Judge Massei accepted very little.

    In 2010, 2011 and 2012 Knox’s dishonesties continued to escalate, even as the Hellmann appeal court refuted some of them, and the Supreme Court hit a new level of disbelief toward them.

    In April 2013 in the book Waiting to be Heard the volume and scope and nastiness of Knox’s lies really peaked - even though prior to publication for legal reasons the book had been semi-expurgated.

    And ever since Knox has tried to sustain that peak, rendering her unable to face the Nencini appeal court, unlike Sollecito who was backpedalling.

    2. Preview Of Coming Analysis Of Knox’s Book

    I now focus from here on some of what Knox falsely claimed in the book. For the quotes I have put in both chapter and page numbers from my version.

    Dissecting The “There Is No Evidence” Claim

    Knox claims on TV over, and over, and over, and over again that ‘‘there is no evidence against me’‘, rather than, as many say here, directly saying she did not kill Meredith. 

    Click here for:The interview with Diane Sawyer, right when this book was released.

    Click here for:The first interview with Good Morning America, a book tour stop, listed here.

    Click here for:This interview with a radio station in New Zealand.

    Click here for:This interview with an Australian radio station.

    Click here for:This Canadian interview with Anna Tremonti of the CBC.

    Click here for:A family interview on Good Morning America.

    Click here for:The first Chris Cuomo interview, May 2013, listed here.

    Click here for:This promotional piece with Amazon editor Neal Thompson.

    Click here for:This one with Seattle ‘‘journalist’’ Linda Bryon.

    Click here for:This video that went on the air in Germany.

    Click here for:This piece on NPR with Jackie Lyden, here.

    Click here for:This live interview with the Today Show, Knox says she won’t return.

    Click here for:Her email to Judge Nencini.

    Click here for:This cringe-worthy appearance with Simon Hattenstone, January 2014, before the verdict.

    Click here for:This interview in early 2014, after the Florence Appeals Court confirms the 2009 trial verdict.

    Click here for:This one supposedly at UW, after Nencini confirmed Massei’s verdict.

    Click here for:This press release comes out after the Nencini Report is issued.

    Click here for:This May 2014 interview with Chris Cuomo.

    See also the British interviews here and here.

    And let’s not forget her upcoming calunnia trial with a first hearing in March, since the Italian magazine, ‘‘Oggi’‘, published excerpts from her book here.

    Really? No Evidence???

    In Amanda Knox’s own words:

    • (Chapter 13, Page 112) you mention a LONG list of what you and Raffaele talked about, but don’t remember if you read or had sex?

    • (Chapter 17, Page 136) you reference the missing sweater (Filomena saw you wear that day), but it still was never found.

    • (Chapter 17, Page 139) you mentioned the writings (you said you would kill for a pizza).

    • (Chapter 18, Page 143) you claim the blood on the faucet was from your pierced ears.  (According to Barbie Nadeau, your mother said the blood was from your period).

    • (Chapter 18, Page 143) you acknowledge Raffaele took away your alibi.

    • (Chapter 19, Page 151) you claim that Guede backs your alibi, but refutes Sollecito, which doesn’t make sense if you were together.

    • (Chapter 19, Page 152) you acknowledge the knife with your DNA on the handle, Meredith’s on the blade—the infamous double DNA knife.

    • (Chapter 20, Page 155) you say you were there. (You claim it meant RS apartment), yet you let PL remain in prison.

    • (Chapter 20, Page 156) you admit writing a letter (you claim it was misinterpreted), claiming that Raffaele killed Meredith and planted your fingerprints.

    • (Chapter 21, Page 164) you reference RS DNA on the bra clasp but saying it does not implicate you directly.

    • (Chapter 21, Page 165) you admit (and I believe this), that much of your knowledge comes from crime TV.

    • (Chapter 21, Page 165) you sarcastically admit you were the last person to wash up in a bloody bathroom.

    • (Chapter 21, Page 169)—the Matteini decision—you say that the prosecution had stacked so much evidence Guede’s testimony wouldn’t have mattered.

    • (Chapter 22. Page 173) you mention the police arresting the wrong people, but hypocritically, omit your false accusation of PL.

    • (Chapter 22, Page 178) you reference Meredith’s DNA on the knife (which RS claimed was during a cooking accident).

    • (Chapter 22, Page 178) you reference your bloody footprints, and mentioned Raffaele’s

    • (Chapter 23, Page 183) you reference the bra clasp having Raffaele’s DNA

    • (Chapter 23, Page 184) you acknowledge claims of a partial crime scene cleanup.

    • (Chapter 25, Page 209) you acknowledge Filomena testifies you brought other ‘‘friends’’ to the house.

    • (Chapter 25, Page 211) you acknowledge the cut on your neck, which you claim was a hickey.

    • (Chapter 25, Page 216) you acknowledge telling the police Meredith always locked her door, though you try to spin it.

    • (Chapter 25, Page 217) you acknowledge your cellphone and Raffaele’s were turned off, though you give different reasons why.

    • (Chapter 26, Page 220) you acknowledge Quintavalle claims he saw you in his store the morning after, looking pale, and checking out cleaning products.

    • (Chapter 26, Page 221) you acknowledge Nina Capezzali testifies she heard a scream at about 11:30pm, something you put in your statement.

    • (Chapter 26, Page 223) you acknowledge Curatolo saw you in the Piazza, but claim it provides you an alibi, whenever it happened.

    • (Chapter 26, Page 226) you acknowledge that phone records contradict your own account.

    And we still haven’t really gotten to those pesky statements you wrote and signed here and here and here.

    So. Was Knox lying in all those media appearances? Or lying throughout her book? Or both?

    3. Knox’s Trouble Keeping Details Straight

    When Exactly Did Patrick Text You?

    1.  (Chapter 5, Page 44, 45) Knox says she got text not to come to work BEFORE cooking dinner, washing dishes, having the pipe burst.

    2.  (Chapter 13, Page 113) Knox wrote a letter to police, saying she got the text not to come in to work AFTER cooking dinner, washing the dishes, having the pipe burst.

    Why Did you Turn Your Phones Off?

    1.  (WTBH, Chapter 5, Page 44) Knox says she turned your phone off so Patrick couldn’t text her in case he changed his mind.

    2.  (WTBH, Chapter 25, Page 217) Knox sarcastically says the phones were turned off so they could watch a movie undisturbed.

    3.  (Honor Bound, Page 22) Sollecito says the phones were turned off so you two wouldn’t be disturbed doing ooh-la-la.

    4.  (December 2007 Interview with Mignini) Knox says she turned the phone off because it only had a limited charge.  Knox also claims she doesn’t know if Raffaele turned off his phone.

    5.  (At trial) Defence lawyers contested that the phones were ever shut off.

    The Pipe-Leak at Raffaele’s Apartment

    1.  (Chapter 5, Page 44) Knox says Raffaele had already had a plumber come once

    2.  (December 2007 interview with Mignini) Knox claims it is the first time the leak ever happened.

    Harry Potter in German?

    1.  (Chapter 5, Page 44/45) You make dinner, wash dishes, have the pipe leak, then go read HP in German

    2.  (Chapter 13, Page 113) You say you read HP in German to Raffy before Amelie, and before dinner

    How Many Partners in Italy?

    1.  (Chapter 2, Page 16) Cristiano, the man she met on a train (actually a drug dealer named Frederico).  The first.

    2.  (Chapter 3, Page 23) Mirko, a man she met at a cafe.  The second.

    3.  (Chapter 4, Page 35) Bobby, a man supposedly introduced by Laura and Filomena.  The third.

    4.  (Chapter 5, Page 38) Raffaele, who she met at a music concert.  The fourth.

    5.  (Chapter 18, Page 142) Knox claims of 3 partners in Italy (4 in Seattle, so 7 total).  This is her ‘‘HIV-hoax’‘.  Well, she lists 4 just in Italy in the book.

    6.  Laura and Filomena complained of Knox bringing MANY strange men home.

    A Hypocrite In Knox’s Own Words

    (Chapter 18, Page 142) Knox complains about being characterized as a sex obsessed slut.  She frequently complains about how she is perceived.

    (Chapters 2, 3, 4) Read for yourself.

    Meredith’s Time of Death

    (Chapter 26, Page 221) Stomach digestion analysis is not an accurate way to determine a person’s T.O.D.

    (Chapter 26, Page 222) Stomach digestion analysis is an accurate way to determine a person’s T.O.D.

    When Knox Becomes A Suspect

    (Chapter 7, Page 54) Knox claims that she and Raffaele were already suspected, and the police decided to tap their phones.

    (Chapter 7, Page 54) Knox claims ALL the people in the house were detained: herself, Laura, Filomena, Giacomo. the other men downstairs.

    (Chapter 8, Page 69) Knox says she is staying behind to help the police

    (Chapter 8, Page 69) Knox thinks running away would be seen as a failure as an adult.

    (Chapter 9, Page 76) Supposedly, British tabloids are reporting that one of Meredith’s female roommates was a suspect.

    (Chapter 10, Page 81) Despite the ‘‘50 hour interrogation’’ Knox still finds time to attend class on Monday

    (Chapter 10, Page 83) Knox says the police suspected them, and were trying to separate her and Raffaele.

    (Chapter 10, Page 83) Knox says she had to beg the police to let her into the police station while Raffaele was being questioned.  Some suspect.

    For some context please see this post.

    4. Stuff That Is Outright Disturbing

    (Chapter 2, Page 16) Knox meets a drug dealer on a train, and ditches her sister to be with him.

    (Chapter 2, Page 20) Knox goes with her Grandma to get medications for her STD (and writes about it)

    (Chapter 2, 3, 4) Knox has her ‘‘campaign for casual sex’’ and writes about it.

    (Chapter 8, Page 73) Knox publishes personal details about Meredith, including questions about whether she like anal.

    (Chapter 10, Page 82) Knox skips the memorial of her ‘‘friend’’ to go strum a ukulele, and is annoyed it paints her as cold.

    (Chapter 12, Page 104) Knox seems to enjoy the false detail with which she describes being strip searched.

    In fact disturbing that this book was ever written.  Hello?  Son of Sam?

    For all the bad feelings Amanda claims to have about Lumumba’s false arrest, she still blames it on the police.  Either she can’t (or pretends she can’t) see that her statements are what caused it to happen.

    5. Obviously False Claims

    (Chapter 6, Page 49) Knox claims that Raffaele reported the break in before the postal police came. This was proven false.

    (Chapter 10, Page 80) Knox claims to be assaulted by Officer Ficarra.  Never happened.  She also claimed to not have an interpretor.  But see here and see here.

    (Chapter 10, Page 89) The ‘‘interrogation’’ with Mignini.  Detailed, but total BS.  It never happened.

    (Chapter 11, Page 95) Knox claims she was told she was being held for ‘‘bureaucratic’’ reasons.  She knew why she was arrested.

    (Chapter 11, Page 96) Knox sends her 3rd statement.  Read it and tell me that this is not total junk.

    (Chapter 11, Page 100) Knox describes a search that would qualify as sexual assault, if it were actually true.

    (Chapter 18, Page 142) Knox herself released the positive HIV test, and used it to try to gain sympathy.

    (Chapter 20, Page 155) Knox misrepresents the grilling from Mignini, and who her lawyers were. See the transcripts here and here and here and here.

    (Chapter 22, Page 180) Knox supporters claim Guede got his sentence reduction to testify, but here Knox admits Guede went ‘‘short-form trial’’ for the 1/3 reductions.

    Knox had another attorney, Giancarlo Costa., who was present with Luciano Ghirga at Knox’s December 2007 questioning from Mignini.  He left shortly after this, likely due to frustration.  In the book Knox lists Ghirga and Vedova (who was not yet retained).  In fact, Costa is not mentioned at all throughout the book.  Probably to his benefit, as Ghirga and Vedova are ‘‘quoted’’ as saying many false and insulting things, including being credited with helping to write this ‘‘memoir’‘.

    Knox also adds stories about other people engaging in drug use and casual sex, but I disbelieve just about everything she says.

    6. Tortured Logic

    Myth: There is no evidence, and what there is, is unreliable (Knox lawyer Ted Simon)
    Fact:  For there to be unreliable evidence, there has to be evidence in the first place.  Is this moron really a lawyer?

    Myth:  There is no evidence against Knox and Sollecito, and the evidence is only circumstantial.
    Fact:  For evidence to be ‘‘merely’’ circumstantial, it still has to exist.  And different types of circumstantial evidence together can be very compelling.

    Myth:  If the prosecution actually had a case, there would be no need to drag Knox’s personal and sex life into the spotlight.
    Fact:  The prosecution actually has a very strong case, it is Knox who keeps bringing up her sex life (either as a diversion, or because she’s weird)

    Myth:  There is no evidence against me (Sollecito interviews), and nothing very strong against Amanda.
    Fact:  You just admitted there is something against Amanda.

    Myth:  The evidence against Guede is rock solid.  The evidence against Knox and Sollecito is contaminated.
    Fact:  The same CSI’s investigate the whole crime scene.  Either they did a good job, or they didn’t, you can’t have it both ways.

    Myth:  There is nothing to place Amanda and Raffaele in Meredith’s bedroom.
    Fact:  Aside from RS’s DNA on bra-clasp and AK’s shoeprint,
        -There is Filomena’s room (alleged point of entry), with mixed DNA from Amanda/Meredith.  It was ransacked BEFORE with window was broken.
        -There is no trace of Guede in Filomena’s room (even though he supposedly scaled the wall, and broke in through the window).
        -There is Amanda’s bedroom (lamp taken for cleanup) and wiped of prints
        -There is Amanda’s bathroom (used to washup), mixed DNA from Amanda/Meredith, RS’s footprint on mat.
        -There is Laura/Filomena’s bathroom (Rudy used), which Knox deliberately avoided flushing the toilet.
        -There is the hallway (access between the rooms) with Knox and Sollecito’s bloody footprints, wiped away, revealed with luminol..

            Seems like the entire house is a crime scene, and in the book, Knox does mention some of this.

    Myth:  There is no forensic evidence Knox and Sollecito were involved.
    Fact:  Aside from being false, the other ‘‘non-existent’’ evidence listed here:
        -Knox’s false accusation of Lumumba to divert attention from herself.
        -Knox’s false accusations of police brutality to try to get off on the charges.
        -Knox and Sollecito both turning off their cellphones (then denying it, then offering different justifications for it)
        -Knox and Sollecito both gave numerous false alibis.
        -Knox knew inside details, such as Meredith screaming, having her throat cut, and where she died.
        -Testimony from witnesses such as Curatolo, Quintavalle
        -Testimony from Laura, Filomena, and Meredith’s British friends.
        -To this day, Knox and Sollecito cannot provide a clear or consistent account of where they were, and what they were doing.

            They would likely have been convicted on these facts alone, and the book does address (but dismiss), many of these points.

    7. My Own Conclusions

    WTBH is about 90-95% total bullshit, and I am giving Knox the benefit of the doubt here.  She sprinkles truth here and there, just enough to make it arguable.

    Knox writes in lurid detail about her sex life, and keeps bringing up her rabbit vibrator.  It doesn’t help clarify what she was doing when the murder took place, and doesn’t really give any information that would lead to other suspects.  All it does is reinforce the notion that she is unstable, sex obsessed, and totally clueless to the reactions of other people.

    My own take is that this is Knox’s revenge. She is getting to slime everyone she didn’t like—which is just about everyone. 

    While Sollecito obviously didn’t write Honor Bound (he just couldn’t with his poor English skills), I believe that Knox is the primary author of WTBH.  Linda Kulman may have helped with some parts, but this sounds to me like Amanda.

    While Knox repeatedly goes on the ‘‘No Evidence’’ mantra, this book (if you can stomach reading it), very much refutes her media claims.  In a very loopy way, Honor Bound (authored by Andrew Gumbel), does the same thing, tacitly admitting many key prosecution facts.  Both books are arrogant, nasty, spiteful, partial confessions.

    Here is a screwed up thing: This is only a partial summary.  The full book analysis is coming.  The floodgates are opening.

    8. This isn’t the Beatles, but…

    The payback is here
    Take a look, it’s all around you
    You thought you’d never shed a tear
    So this must astound you, and must confound you
    Buy a ticket for the train
    Hide in a suitcase if you have to
    This ain’t no singing in the rain
    This is a twister that will destroy you

    You can run but you can’t hide
    Because no one here gets out alive
    Find a friend in whom you can confide
    Julien, you’re a slow motion suicide

    (Lyrics from ‘‘Julien’’ by Placebo)


    Sunday, February 15, 2015

    Journalist Andrea Vogt Highlights Non-Damning Nature Of Rome Embassy Cables About Knox

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Ambassador to Italy David Thorne with Secretary of State John Kerry

    1. US Freedom Of Official Information And Politics

    Since 1967 the US Federal Government has had to provide certain official information to requesting citizens and organizations.

    Most of those are watchdog groups and reporters. The relevant rules are quite elaborate, and can be read here and here.

    About half of all information requested is handed over fully, about 3/8 is handed over with excisions and withholdings, and about 1/8 is not handed over at all, with summary reasons for the refusal. This can then be appealed or alternately brought to the attention of someone in Congress.

    If a powerful congressman or committee staffer picks up the ball then the information can flow quite magically.

    If the information can embarrass the presidential administration the other party can gleefully extract the information, if necessary with the issuing of a subpoena. The news media will usually pick this up and run with it, especially if a Congressional committee decides to ask questions or hold hearings.

    We reckon that our readership and the case-watchers in general extend right across the political spectrum from left to right. No easy trick and we have always been quite pleased with this. It is usually impossible to tell what the political position of any poster or emailer is.

    Same with the US media. Fox News cable news is generally thought to be right-wing and MSNBC left-wing and CNN tries to make it in the middle. But all three have had left-wingers and right-wingers on their shows supporting either Italy and justice or the anti-justice anti-Italy misinformation Knox campaign.

    In other words support by Americans for Italian justice or for giving Knox a pass has had nothing to do with party lines. But that could change some.

    Right now the presidential administration is on its back foot, as the other party controls both the houses of Congress. The Secretary of State and the Ambassador in Rome both work for the administration, and can be called to account by that Congress.

    Knox happens to live in a city and state which largely goes along with the presidential party and administration. Senator Patty Murray and Senator Maria Cantwell are in the presidential party as is Mayor Ed Murray of Seattle.

    Senator Cantwell is STILL the only influential politician who has taken a public stance anti-Italy; nobody from the opposite party ever has.

    In 2009 Cantwell was sharply rebuffed and her facts corrected by the State Department and CNN’s legal analyst and even by some pro-justice Seattle voters..

    In October 2013 Cantwell flashed in and out of a bizarre misinformation panel perhaps embarrassed to be associated with it.

    Bottom line? The presidential administration and party does not seem in a strong position to refuse to hand over any documents, or without very strong reason to take a pro-Knox anti-Italy position.

    We are not guaranteeing that this case will become a political football. But it could. If it does, the Knox gang will have only weak political allies (if any) and what the Rome Embassy reported to the State Department 2007-2015 is really going to matter.

    How does all this relate to what Andrea Vogt has recently encountered?

    2. Andrea Vogt And The Cables From The Rome Embassy

    Andrea Vogt in effect holds a giant lever. She has long pursued her right as an American journalist to surface what the consular officers in the Rome Embassy who watchdogged the 2009 trial and 2011 and 2013 appeals and Knox’s stint in prison had been reporting back to the State Department in Washington.

    Releases of copies of cables in 2010 showed “no cause for concern” over Knox’s treatment and copies of cables in 2011 showed likewise.

    There was zero official paper trail helpful to a Knox fight against extradition. That was despite a very nasty effort by Knox forces to lean on the Embassy and the State Department by complaining directly to President Obama.

    Now Andrea Vogt is reporting on the Freelance Desk in “Update Feb 13 2015” on her experience with a new batch of cables.

    Oddities to our eyes are that (1) in this batch, some requested cables were not released; and (2) a cable in October 2011 at the end of the Hellmann appeal wrongly declared “case closed”.

    Passages of special interest have been highlighted here by us.

    Many may view the cables as just routine bureaucracy, which in large part they are, but I believe they are important documents to add to the public record for two reasons.

    First, they show insight into how American citizens in trouble abroad are supported (or not, depending on your viewpoint) by their government.

    Second, they contribute transparently to the established written government record, clarifying diplomatic aspects of the case that until now have remained hidden while the saga played out solely in Italian courtrooms and the media.

    The results of this second batch of FOIA requests were of particular importance due to the grave accusations being launched against the Italian police and members of its judiciary by members of Knox’s family, supporters and public relations team during the period of her incarceration.

    The question at hand: was Amanda Knox abused, mistreated or robbed of a fair trail in Italy? How closely was the state department monitoring the case and what did embassy officials do, or not do, as it evolved?

    The answer, first revealed in this first batch of embassy cables released to me in 2012 and dating back from 2007-2009, is that embassy and state department personnel actively monitored the case and provided aid from the very first days after her arrest. Other state and federal documents that I published back in 2010 ... show how Washington State’s congressional delegation, namely Sen. Maria Cantwell, was also involved.

    This second batch of FOIA-requested embassy cables was released to me in late 2014 in response to another more extensive FOIA request made in 2012 (a two-year lag time is not unusual for broad requests)...

    In brief, these new cables shows that the trend of close state department monitoring of the case was constant, with consular involvement up until the day (Oct 11, 2011) that the U.S. Ambassador Thorne in Rome sent a cable to the secretary of state in Washington D.C., officially declaring the matter “case closed.”

    The communications are noteworthy because they bust a number of media myths about Amanda Knox’s release and immediate departure from Italy after her release in 2011, namely that the U.S. embassy did not receive her in the hours immediately post release for consular services, as she was traveling on a valid U.S. passport.

    The other interesting point is that though the case was far from over in Italy,  once Amanda Knox was off Italian soil, it no longer considered the case to be of interest. “With the verdict of Oct. 3 overturning Amanda Knox’s prior conviction, her immediate release from prison and her subsequent departure from Italy today, Post considers this case closed. THORNE.”

    For American citizens abroad, it is a welcome reminder that the embassy works on citizens’ behalf, as are the four documents released with excisions that show Knox was regularly visited by consular officials every six weeks and brought reading materials.

    It is worth noting that the only persons to publicly report to have regularly visited Knox in prison to bring her reading materials were those associated with the Fondazione Italia USA, namely Italian parliamentarian Rocco Girlanda and Corrado Maria Daclon, the two men also present with her in the car that drove Knox out of prison the night she was acquitted.

    Coincidence or are these the consular visits the cables refer to?

    As soon as Knox was out of the country, the embassy declared “case closed,” perhaps not expecting that her trials would continue. Those who have followed the case know that the acquittal that prompted her release was later annulled in its entirety by Italy’s Supreme Court, which called for a second appeal trial to be held in a separate venue: Florence….

    For the British and Italian authorities, and family members of Meredith Kercher who have patiently waited out the Italian legal system, perhaps the “case closed” cable jumped the gun. Once an American citizen is out of the country where he or she is in trouble, what duty does the embassy have to keep following legal developments that involve an American not physically in the country?

    Did the embassy re-open the case later once the Supreme Court quashed the acquittal or is it “out of sight, out of mind,” and once an American in trouble abroad is no longer abroad, the embassy in that country can effectively wash its hands of the matter? Is it still considered “Case Closed”?

    As the possibility of an extradition process hangs in the balance with the upcoming March 25 supreme court decision, the documents may provide some additional material for legal scholars to consider.

    As the State Department letter points out, there are still 11 documents that fall under the umbrella of my initial FOIA request that have not been released that require further coordination.

    Based on the content of my 2012 request, I believe these may be documents relating to then Sen. John Kerry and the U.S. Committee on Foreign Relations, of which he was chairman from 2009-2013 [ed note: and Senator Cantwell was a committee member] and to which specific FOIA requests were made, and for which I have not yet received response.

    I have scanned and uploaded the 2-page FOIA response and 5 released cables (Oct 2011, June 2011, March 2011, November 2010, September 2010) below…

    Andrea Vogt included images of those six seemingly mundane documents she received below the report, praises the Embassy and State, and voices no suspicions.

    Amazingly, not one other American reporter has pursued this obvious angle. Still, in a political fuss, all those many others described in Part 1 above could also choose to do so.


    Sollecito v Italy & Guede: My Subtitled YouTubes Of Rudy Guede’s Interview with Leosini

    Posted by Eric Paroissien













    Wednesday, February 11, 2015

    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #6: Examining Gumbel’s Role In Biasing The Book

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Andrew Gumbel seen in a shrill 2014 CNN report, perhaps the least balanced so far 

    1. Bringing The News Up To Date

    On 5 March the Florence court will replace the prosecution’s translation of the target claims in the book with its own translation.

    And Sollecito and Gumbel will probably be ordered to stand public trial then.

    Both the prosecution and the guiding magistrate have as usual in Italy played immensely fair in this case. Each gave Sollecito and Gumbel numerous opportunities over more than a year to try to explain and justify certain target passages in a way that gets them off the hook. In further fairness the hearings have all been closed.

    What leaked out after the last hearing in Florence a couple of weeks ago suggested that Sollecito has yet to come up with any justification at all. He was said to look dazed and depressed.

    Gumbel was not in court. But his lawyer apparently claimed that Gumbel was merely a sort of well-meaning sheep: Sollecito’s ghost writer, nothing more, who faithfully took down only what he heard from his client.

    This has apparently not gone down at all well in the Sollecito camp.

    The Sollecito family and legal team has long hinted rather publicly that Gumbel did a number on them, an end-run. Francesco Sollecito and the family and Sollecito’s lawyers Giula Bongiorno and Luca Maori had all claimed within several weeks of the book coming out that numerous passages in the book were malicious and untrue. Sollecito himself denied that he put them in.

    The Sollecito family and legal team have also hinted ever since that Gumbel and some American Knox cronies with self-serving agendas (suggested on pro-Knox websites to have been Steve and Michele Moore, Frank Sforza, Bruce Fischer, maybe some more) had recklessly put dangerous unfounded claims in the final draft of the book.

    Those claims (now the main subjects of the Florence trial) were seemingly never put into Italian and run carefully by them. No proper due diligence was done, and as a result they have been left holding the can. And all this under the cold eyes of the Supreme Court, which must rule in six weeks whether Sollecito makes things up. 

    2. Smart Rules For Ghost Writers To Avoid Trouble

    This is hardly the first time a ghost writer and their client have fallen out. It is a touchy trouble-prone profession not governed by formalised training or an established code of ethics, where getting sued or not getting paid is quite a frequent thing.

    Some of those who do it full-time and have had their share of trouble and want no more of it and want to alert others have posted their own suggested groundrules online.

    For example, both client and ghost writer are well served by spending a few days checking out each other. Then they make a contract where literally everything needs to be spelled out.

    Ghost writers need to take extreme care with clients in legal trouble who might drag them in or who they might drag in further. They need to be clear whether they are to research on their own, and to whom they are permitted to talk.

    They need to know whether their name will be on the cover or anywhere inside the book. They need to know whether they have a licence from the client to do related TV and print articles, especially if those pay a separate fee, and what they are allowed to say.

    They need to try to capture honestly the client’s voice and not turn them into someone they are not. They need to know what facts to put in and to be clear what facts are consciously left out. They need to do due diligence on the drafts with the agent and publisher and lawyers, and if allowed check out dynamite claims with “the other side”.

    And if any accusations of crimes are to be made they REALLY need to check those legal hot potatoes with the client and the lawyers and the publishers, line by line. 

    Gumbel seems to have ignored pretty well all of these groundrules, and dug Sollecito in much deeper.

    Knox’s ghost writer Linda Kulman (more experienced than Gumbel at this and with no axe to grind) seems to have followed some but not all of these guidelines. Her name is only in the Knox book once, in a short thankyou note by Knox at the back, and she remained low-key and made no separate statements.

    Nevertheless, Linda Kulman had the Sollecito book as a (then) largely unchallenged model. She included in the book a number of false accusation of crimes and malicious ridicules of others, none of them properly checked out, which will have Knox in court for sure before too long. (Oggi is already in court for repeating some of her claims.)

    Linda Kulman also included an entire chapter about Knox’s “interrogation” where every detail is made up. She included a lengthy claim that Mignini did an illegal interrogation of Knox, when in fact he wasn’t even there. And she left out numerous key facts, such as that Knox was having sex with a major drug dealer almost to the day of her arrest, and most of the evidence.

    Linda Kulman certainly dd not capture Knox’s real voice or mode of behavior, which are notoriously brash and possibly the root cause of Meredith’s murder.

    3. Flashing Warning Lights In Italy In 2012

    If the Sollecito family and team did not know all of the above, it would seem to be Sharlene Martin’s fiduciary duty as book agent for Sollecito to make sure both they and any ghost writer they hired did know.

    For their part, the Sollecito team should have done their own due diligence in Italy, and perhaps looked around for an experienced ghost writer in Italy who could converse with all of them and show them in Italian what would be in the book. And in particular known about and been respectful of this which was in our first post.

    On 3 October 2011 Judge Hellmann told RS and AK they were free to go, despite the fact that no legal process for murder and some other crimes is considered final in Italy until no party pursues any further appeals or the Supreme Court signs off. Most still accused of serious crimes (as in the UK and US) remain locked up. Hellmann, pathetically trying to justify this fiasco ever since, was firmly edged out and still the target of a possible charge.

    Other flashing warnings should have made Sollecito’s family and legal team and book writers very wary. They included the immediate strong warning of a tough prosecution appeal to the Supreme Court. They also included the pending calunnia trials of Knox and her parents, the pending trial of the Sollecitos for attempting to use politics to subvert justice, the pending trials of Spezi, Aviello, and Sforza, and so on. 

    A major flashing warning was right there in Italian law. Trials are meant to be conducted in the courtroom and attempts to poison public opinion are illegal. They can be illegal in the US and UK too but, for historical reasons to do with the mafias and crooked politicians, Italian laws in this area are among the world’s toughest. So mid-process, normally no books are ever published


    4. Warning Lights About A Hasty Gumbel Contract

    Many of the problems in the book are associated with a strident anti-Italy tone.  Well over half the false claims taken apart in this May 2014 post are FACTUALLY wrong in areas where Sollecito has no known knowledge or point of view.

    For example, it was claimed that the Italian justice institutions are both very unpopular and corrupt. Neither is true, and almost no Italians believe that.

    Sharlene Martin was first mentioned as Sollecito’s agent in the NY Times on 5 December 2011 when Sollecito had been swanning around the US west coast in an apparent attempt to, well, get her back in the sack. He was in a weak mode.

    On 10 January 2012 Francesco Sollecito was reported in the Journal of Umbria as saying this about the purpose of the book 

    “I have not done the math [the lawyers etc costs]. For good luck. I will do it after the ruling of the Supreme Court. It will be painful because the figure of one million euro of which one speaks is not far from reality.” This was stated to the weekly Today, on newsstands tomorrow, by Francesco Sollecito, father of Raffaele.

    According to [Francesco] Sollecito, in case of confirmation of absolution, then there will be 250-300,000 euro compensation provided for the unjust detention of his son, this money will be enough only to pay the fees of the 12 consultants “that we had to appoint to succeed to refute the allegations.”

    In the interview with the weekly, Francesco Sollecito denies that Raffaele has a girlfriend, as reported after the publishing of photos while kissing a girl: “Annie, the girl who appears with him in photos on Facebook is just a friend, in fact a sorta of cousin… “The priorities of my son right now are otherise.” What? “Raffaele has signed a contract with the American literary manager Sharlene Martin for a book, it is a definite undertaking “.

    Apparently at this point Sharlene Martin had not been to Italy or spoken face-to-face with Francesco or the legal team. Whether she had briefed herself on the warning lights described above so that she could properly warn the US team of writer, editors, publishers and publicists is not known. 

    5. Gumbel’s Shrill Record Of Sliming Italy

    On 12 February 2012 Andrew Gumbel is reported in the NY Times as having got the co-writer job. During that period due diligence (if any) on his background would have been done, seemingly mainly by Sharlene Martin (if any) as a complaint of Sollecito’s team is that they could not look him over before he came on board.

    Andrew Gumbel is not a lawyer, and in fact our own lawyers have repeatedly found silly his pretentious and inaccurate legal claims. Nor as far as we know does he have a track record as a ghost writer. His main claim to the job seems to have been based on his having been based in Italy with the UK Independent for nearly five years in the 1990s.

    The 1990s were a pretty good time in Italy.

    There was okay growth and jobs availability, record tourism, relative political calm before Berlusconi grabbed political and media power, many successful farms and firms, and a really push against the mafias - for which many brave judges and prosecutors had died.  The Italian food and wine were great, the cars and luxury goods were great, and Italy was home to about half of the finest medieval art in the world.

    We checked it out: foreign reporters in Italy at the time did a fair and balanced job reflecting all of this. With seemingly only one notorious exception: the British reporter Andrew Gumbel for the UK Independent.

    Apparently Gumbel could find almost nothing to like about Italy. In 5 years almost nothing to write a positive report on.

    Brits relying only on his shrill reporting in the Independent may have thought Italy to be a very corrupt, lawless, politically and economically dysfunctional place, with nothing about it to like and no reason to visit. If they were bigoted, this could have made them more-so. Nasty stuff, and for foreign reporters in any country anywhere very unusual.

    Below are the headers for most or all of Andrew Gumbel’s shrill reports from Italy.

    Fair and balanced? The right guy for a delicate project with his client in a delicate legal bind? You decide.  We have highlighted in yellow all the reports with a negative bias, maybe true, maybe not. Of the total of 62 reports only 4 seem to us neutral or nice. Were the Sollecitos or their Italian lawyers or HarperCollins made aware by Gumbel or Sharlene Martin of Gumbel’s emotional negative bias?

      1. Gumbel Articles On Italy’s Government + History (25)
    • A sick economy shakes out the fake invalids. (growing economic problems in Italy make corruption less acceptable)
    • Bickering while Venice sinks.
    • Can Italy survive Dini’s fall? (prime minister Lamberto Dini)
    • Chirac consigns Italy to Europe’s second division. (French president Jacques Chirac)
    • Corruption on an Olympian scale.(Rome, Italy, seeks to host Olympic Games)
    • Facing up to Italy’s crisis. (Italy’s economic problems)
    • Glitz takes a back seat on road to Rome. (Romano Prodi begins electoral campaign in Italy) (Interview)
    • How the kidnap and rape of Dario Fo’s wife was ordered by Italy’s right-wing rulers.
    • Illegal migrants reach EU havens via Italy.
    • Italy waits for the gravy train to be derailed. (problems facing Italian railway system)
    • Italy ready for mission impossible: intervention in Albania could bring instability to Rome.
    • Italy heads back into a political void.
    • Italy struggles to shake off the legacy of Mussolini.
    • Italy’s Olive Tree fails to bear fruit.
    • Italy’s rich city prays for fall of nation state. (citizens of Bologna, Italy, strongly in favour of European Union)
    • New wave of state corruption stuns the Italians.
    • Past demons threaten Italy’s bid for change. (Italy fails to move towards a SEcond Republic)
    • Prodi’s dilemma: let the left win or surrender Italy’s drive towards Emu. (Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi)
    • Rome’s magic circle. (deterioration of the Colosseum in Rome, Italy)
    • Scholars in a spin over Churchill link to the death of Mussolini. (claims that Mussolini was shot by British secret services)
    • Shouting could drown out Italian democracy. (serious political clashes damage reputation of Italian parliament)
    • So, were there offers he should have refused? (trial of Giulio Andreotti)
    • The Nazi and the protection racket. (controversy over trial of former Nazi Erich Priebke in Italy)
    • Venice’s grand opera descends to farce. (dispute hampers rebuilding of La Fenice opera house)
    • Why Italy cannot bring war criminals to justice.
    • 2. Gumbel Articles On Italy’s Scenery, Art, Music, Fashion, Culture (2)
    • Il Papa brings on Dylan for a taste of the devil’s rhythms. (Bob Dylan to perform for Pope)
    • Inside the Assisi basilica, a sight to make saints weep. (challenges involved in restoration of art treasures from Basilica of St Francis in Assisi, Italy)
    • 3. Gumbel Articles On Italy’s Economy + Business (8)
    • A nation that brings its style to the track. (many changes to Italian rail network)
    • All is not bene among the united colours. (problems facing Benetton)
    • Berlusconi consolidates his rule over the Italian air waves. (former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi)
    • Ciao Gianni, but now what? (Gianni Agnelli resigns as chairman of Fiat)
    • Climax of Italy’s TV war. (referendum on whether Silvio Berlusconi should sell his television channels)
    • Italy’s new crop stifled in the shadow of a paradise lost.(problems affecting the Italian motion picture industry)
    • Murdoch pursues Italian television. (News Corp seeks stake in Silvio Berlusconi’s media empire).
    • The dark world behind Versace’s life of glamour. (murder of fashion designer Gianni Versace)
    • 4. Gumbel Articles On Italy’s Justice, Crime, Corruption,  Mafias (24)
    • Accidental death of an anarchist comes back to scandalise Italy. (three men convicted of murder of police commissioner Luigi Calabresi in 1972)
    • A fashion label that really is to die for .... (murder of fashion designer Maurizio Gucci may have been instigated by his former wife)(Column)
    • After the suicide, a wall of silence. (new type of Mafia activity in Sicily)
    • Amnesty offers Italy chance to forget its years of terror. (Italian government pardons six people involved in Red Brigades terrorist group in 1970s)
    • Andreotti to face trial on Mob links. (former Italian prime minister Giulio Andreotti to stand trial for consorting with the Mafia)
    • Another black mark against Italy’s judges. (Italy’s anti-corruption magistrates lose their credibility)
    • Arrest us, but we’ll be back next week. (three Italians with Aids use legal loophole to rob banks)
    • Backlash threatens to silence informers. (controversy in Italy over Mafia informers)
    • Bloody end of a fashionable affair. (murder of Maurizio Gucci)
    • Fake invalids at heart of Italy’s postal scandal. (postal service employs many invalids, but some are fakes)
    • Fear and loathing in the Alto Adige. (serial killer murders six people in Merano, Italy)
    • Godfather’ village baffled by murders. (Sicilian town of Corleone)
    • God’s Banker: ‘He was given Mafia money and he made poor use of it.’ (investigation into death of Italian banker Roberto Calvi in 1982 may soon be concluded)
    • Gucci: hell for leather. (Patrizia Gucci convicted for contract killing of former husband Maurizio Gucci)
    • How Cosa Nostra’s cunning outfoxed the Italian state. (Mafia’s criminal network still operating in Italy)
    • How Italy failed to trap its Monster. (failure to bring serial killer in Florence, Italy, to justice)
    • Italy’s men of violence throw off the state’s chains. (revival of the Mafia in Italy)(includes details of murder of magistrate Giovanni Falcone)
    • Mafia trawls Venice’s dark lagoon. (organised crime in Venice, Italy)
    • Mysteries unravel as mafiosi spill secrets. (Italian gangsters make confessions)
    • One woman’s dangerous and lonely battle to break the Cosa Nostra. (challenges facing Maria Maniscalco, mayor of San Giuseppe Jato, Italy)
    • Rome turns a blind eye to Mafia’s killing spree.
    • Secret of why the Mafia has never shot a soul. (code of silence about Mafia in Sicily)
    • Street wars in Italy’s wild south. (high crime levels in Naples, Italy)
    • Who killed Pasolini? (new film about the murder of Pier Paolo Pasolini)
    • 5. Gumbel Articles On Italy’s Physical Disasters (3)
    • After the deluge (eruption of Mount Vesuvius in Italy will create chaos)
    • Assisi in mourning as quake shatters Basilica of St Francis.
    • Umbria shows the civilised way to cope with calamity. (effects of series of earthquakes in Italy)


    6. Conclusion And Next Posts

    This list was checked out with half a dozen posters resident in Italy at the time. All of their reactions were to the effect that, in lying by omission, Gumbel did not play fair with Italy back then. A trivial mind. One which should have been fought off with a stick.

    The next posts seek to identify what Gumbel and the Knox misrepresenters (said to be primarily the Moores, Sforza and Fischer) were responsible for putting in the Sollecito book, and to describe Andrew Gumbel’s vigorous public media campaign. Whether authorized or not authorized, he made around 20 shrill damaging interventions.


    Sunday, February 01, 2015

    Meet The New President Of The Republic Of Italy; Dr Mignini Was Also One Candidate Named

    Posted by Peter Quennell





    Constitutional court judge Sergio Mattarella (image above) has been elected the new President of the Republic of Italy.

    He follows President Giorgio Napolitano (shown below voting) who recently decided to step down. He becomes the ultimate head of the Italian justice system in addition to other functions.

    He was the firm favorite of the party of Prime Minister Renzi so his winning the final vote by more than 2/3 of the 1,009 parliamentarians and regional officials eligible to vote (see images of voting below) was not surprising.

    Dr Mignini’s name was also placed in the first round of the balloting, seen as a form of honor for him for his fine career work and especially his admired success in bringing the Monster Of Florence case to a conclusion with strong evidence pointing to Narducci as the killer - and strong evidence pointing to Spezi and Preston as having tried to pull off a despicable self-serving hoax.

    The AFP reports this about the career of President Mattarella.

    The president-elect is little known among the general public but is a respected figure in political circles after a 25-year parliamentary career and several stints as minister in governments of the left and right.

    He entered politics after his elder brother, who was president of the region of Sicily, was murdered by the Mafia in 1980.

    Renzi’s backing for Mattarella was interpreted as the end of the temporary alliance the premier had forged with his disgraced forerunner [Berlusconi] in order to drive labour market and electoral reforms through parliament.

    Mattarella is seen as an “anti-Berlusconi” figure, having switched sides from the political right to the left in the 1990s, partly because of his distaste for the media tycoon, who still heads the opposition Forza Italia party despite a tax fraud conviction.

    Berlusconi was reported to be feeling “betrayed” by Renzi.

    He had ordered his party to cast blank ballots in the vote, but 35 members out of 142 present for voting ignored his orders, signalling a rift within Forza Italia.

    “The PD had to show it was the backbone of the system and it did,” Ezio Mauro, editor-in-chief of Italian paper La Repubblica. “For Berlusconi it is certainly a major blow.”

    The Forza Italia leader was believed to be hoping for a sympathetic figure to be installed as president to increase his chances of winning a pardon over his criminal conviction which would allow him to return to parliament.

    With regard to Dr Mignini, the Italian Constitution says that any citizen above the age of 50 may be elected President of the Republic no matter if he is a candidate or not: there are no official candidates under the Constitution, and he/she may accept or refuse if elected.

    Reportedly the vote for Dr Mignini was cast by Elector Andrea Lignani Marchesani the influential political leader of Umbria. He had declared that he wanted to devote an inscription vote to Prosecutor General Mignini to honor “his honesty, his independence and his standing up to intimidation from meddlesome forces”.

    This mainly refers to Dr Mignini’s unyielding pushing ahead on the Narducci case, but he is also widely admired for refusing to be intimidated by the pro-Knox and pro-Sollecity forces. He is not active in politics.

    Former President Napolitano actually had a role in Meredith’s case, in that he chose to ignore a petition by some pro-Berlusconi parliamentarians to investigate the Perugia prosecutors for their roles.

    If the case crosses his desk President Mattarella can be expected to take the same pro-justice line.












    Thursday, January 22, 2015

    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #5: Gumbel Simply A Cowardly Defamatory Shill?

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Above: “Neutral ghostwriter” Andrew Gumbel tweets…

    1, Today In The Florence Court

    Lately many of the chest-thumping PR shills have whined a lot more about themselves as victims than done anything to boost Sollecito and Knox.

    Think of Preston, Burleigh, Dempsey, Sforza, Fisher, Moore, and a whole lot of other serial complainers. Now chest-thumper Andrew Gumbel seems to want to join their ranks. That is if the claim that he was ONLY a ghostwriter was made by his lawyer with his consent to the Florence judge.

    2. Signs Gumbel Really Is A Shill

    Note that Sollecito gave many signs during his US book promotion tour late in 2012 that he really didn’t know much about what was in his own book.

    So did Gumbel really only hang on Sollecito’s every word? Or did he talk to a lot more people than that, and get very invested in nasty, dishonest propaganda to deny justice for Meredith via the courts?

    Here’s Andrew Gumbel on 1 May 2014, providing the first media opinion in the UK on Judge Nencini’s appeal report. The nasty false claims highlighted suggest Gumbel has a very strong investment in Sollecito and Knox and not a little contempt for the Italian courts.

    One truth in Gumbel’s article which he must really regret? That sentence in the thitrd paragraph: “Disclosure: I am the co-author with Sollecito on his memoir about the case.”

    The longer the Italian courts consider the Meredith Kercher case ““ and we have now had three trials, six presiding judges, two hearings before the Italian high court and a third on the way ““ the more the country’s institutions of justice have covered themselves in shame.

    Judge after judge has twisted the available evidence into extraordinary contortions of logic to assert, at different times, that Kercher ““ a British exchange student stabbed to death in her room in Perugia in 2007 ““ was the victim of a premeditated attack; that her murder happened spontaneously; that the motive was sexual; that the motive was a dispute over housework with Amanda Knox, the star defendant; that the trigger for the murder was the unseemly appetite Knox and her boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, had for sex and drugs; that the trigger for the murder was Rudy Guede, the Ivorian-born drifter everyone agrees was involved, knocking on the door to use the toilet.

    By now, Knox and Sollecito have been convicted, acquitted and convicted again, and the underlying forensic evidence has been both exposed as a sham and, mystifyingly, reinstated. (Disclosure: I am the co-author, with Sollecito, on his memoir about the case.)

    Still, the latest judicial document in the ongoing battle, a 337-page justification of the most recent convictions made public on Tuesday, marks a new low. Not only has Alessandro Nencini, the presiding judge of the Florence appeals court, apparently resorted to the same tortured logic as his predecessors; he has also stated things as fact that are manifestly and provably wrong.

    That may be more than even the Italian justice system can stomach; judges, after all, aren’t supposed to do things like that. And it may provide Knox and Sollecito with unexpected ““ if still slim ““ grounds for hope at the very moment when Kercher’s death had seemed settled, at last, according to the law.

    To read the new conviction report in detail is to enter a kind of alternate reality, where concrete facts appear ignored and alternate facts are seemingly plucked from the air. Kercher’s murder is reduced to a parlor game and all roads lead to the inevitable, if not also foregone, conclusion that Knox and Sollecito are guilty. For instance:

    • On page 63, Judge Nencini claims that a partial shoeprint found at the murder scene comes from a size 37 women’s shoe and must therefore belong to Amanda Knox. But this is not based on the available evidence. In the early days of the case, the prosecution sought to show that the shoeprint was from Sollecito’s Nikes; the pattern of concentric circles on the sole was later proven to come from a different pair of Nikes belonging to Guede.

    • On page 81, Nencini grapples with the question of how Knox and Sollecito could have participated in the murder but left no more than a single, hotly disputed trace of themselves at the scene. Extraordinarily, Nencini argues that Knox and Sollecito must have wiped the place clean of their DNA (but left an abundance of Guede’s) because no traces of Knox’s DNA were found anywhere in the apartment that she shared with the victim. But multiple samples of Knox’s DNA were found and presented at trial; they just weren’t found in the room where the murder took place.

    • Then, on page 321, Nencini writes that the blade of the purported murder weapon ““ a large kitchen knife found in Sollecito’s apartment ““ bore traces of both Kercher’s and Sollecito’s DNA. Again, this is at variance with the evidence. The most the prosecution ever asserted was that Kercher’s DNA was on the tip of the blade. Sollecito’s DNA has never been found.

    The defense teams have reacted with consternation: Knox issued a formal statement decrying the lack of “credible evidence or logic” in this latest document, which arrived just ahead of the three-month deadline following her latest conviction; Sollecito’s lead lawyer, Giulia Bongiorno, denounced what she said were “at least ten clamorous mistakes per page”. (A Kercher family lawyer called the document “a version that we have always in some ways sustained”.)

    This being Italy, however, the judicial errors are not necessarily a bad thing for Knox and Sollecito, because they give the Italian high court an opening ““ should the justices choose to take it ““ to overturn the latest conviction, and either dismiss the case, send it back to get the mistakes fixed, or order yet another trial in another court.

    The high court justices will be aware, of course, that the longer the case drags on, the more suspect the process will look in the eyes of world opinion. Another trial would test the patience of even the most ardent believers in Knox and Sollecito’s guilt, and certainly of the Kercher family. But the process is starting to curdle ““ even without the spectacle of lawyers arguing, yet again, over the same controversies before a barrage of international TV cameras. That leaves the high court, which always has one eye on the integrity of the system, with a genuine dilemma.

    Much has been written about Italian justice’s desire to save face in this much written-about case. To admit a miscarriage of justice, the argument runs, has become too difficult, because it would expose the mistakes of too many people, from the primary investigators to the Rome forensic lab to the prosecutors and judges.

    However, as the case trudges toward the seven-year mark, one has to wonder how much appetite the institutions of justice still have to stand by what they have done. Will the high court really want to endorse Nencini’s report with all these evident flaws? Or will this finally be the moment when the justice system calls a halt to a travesty committed in its name and exonerates Knox and Sollecito, as it should have done years ago?


    3. How Gumbel Got It Wrong

    We responded by rebutting 20 of Gumbel’s malicious claims in just the first 7 pages of Honor Bound. And Pataz1, a TJMK main poster who also runs his own blog posted this rebuttal of Gumbel below

    This letter was sent to the Guardian’s Reader Editor on 4 May 2014, and again on 3 June, 2014. The Reader’s Editor did not respond to either of the email submissions.

    Gumbel’s May 1st, 2014 article in the Guardian is a thinly veiled advocacy piece for Sollecito and Knox. He left out a significant phrase from a Nencini passage he cites; this phrase he omitted undermines one of his main claims.

    To the Guardian:

    I’m writing to you about Andrew Gumbel’s “comment” on developments in the murder of Meredith Kercher case. Gumbel writes about the recently released Nencini court motivations document, which outlines the court’s reasoning for affirming Knox and Sollecito’s conviction for the murder of Meredith Kercher.

    Gumbel waits until the end of the third paragraph in his article to provide his disclaimer: that he is a co-author of the book by one of the defendants. Its hard to understand why Gumbel waited so long to disclose his vested financial interest in the innocence of one of the defendants on trial. By this time, Gumbel has already levied allegations of impropriety upon the Italian courts and judges. For example, he alleges “the country’s institutions of justice have covered themselves in shame.” He continues specific allegations that “judge after judge has twisted the available evidence [”¦]”.  If Gumbel had provided his disclaimer appropriately at the beginning of his letter, readers would have had a more appropriate understanding of Gumbel’s perspective and motivations for writing his letter.

    Despite being a co-author of a book by one of the two still on trial for Meredith’s murder, Gumbel’s statements on the court process are wrong. Gumbel pushes the perspective that Knox’s reps have pushed in the US; that Knox and Sollecito have been “convicted again” after an acquittal. Gumbel leaves out any mention of the Italian Supreme Court ruling that overturned Knox and Sollecito’s acquittal and sent the case back to the appellate level. After the acquittal was annulled, the original 2009 conviction remained in place. Gumbel is no doubt aware that the Florence court is an appellate court.  (Curiously, Sollecito’s co-defendant Knox also wrongly claims on her website that the Italian Supreme Court “annulled all previous verdicts”; ref: http://www.amandaknox.com/about-contact/?).

    Gumbel’s omission of the Italian Supreme Court ruling is odd, because the entire point of his article is the integrity of the judicial decisions. Gumbel left out that the Italian Supreme Court has already made one ruling regarding the integrity of a judicial decision in this case. The Supreme Court’s ruling wasn’t in favor of Gumbel’s co-author and defendant Raffaele Sollecito;  perhaps this is the reason that Gumbel failed to mention the actual outcome of the acquittal.

    Or perhaps Gumbel left out this information so he could present the evidence the way it is framed by supporters of Knox and Sollecito. Later in the the same paragraph, Gumbel expresses confusion about why evidence remains in the case. He states “the underlying forensic evidence has been both exposed as a sham and, mystifyingly, reinstated.” As the co-author of the book with Sollecito, Gumbel is again no doubt aware that after the appellate-level acquittal was thrown out, the original conviction (with all of the evidence) remained as a part of the case. Any decision made by Hellmann on the evidence was also thrown out of the case, including Hellmann’s conclusions on the knife DNA evidence and the Sollecito’s DNA on the bra clasp. Further, if Gumbel had indeed read the Nencini decision, he would have read the passage where Nencini takes to task the “independent experts” in the Hellmann trial (detailed here:http://thefreelancedesk.com/amanda-knox-trials-meredith-kercher-case/). Gumbel should be well aware after his reading of Nencini why the evidence still contributed to the Florence court upholding his co-author’s conviction.

    In his second point on the Nencini decision, Gumbel leaves out a key phrase that completely undermines his claim. By this time in his article, one is forced to wonder if this omission is deliberate. Gumbel’s claim is that Nencini contradicted himself by writing that Knox and Sollecito only left a “single, hotly disputed trace of themselves” despite the other evidence that Nencini also talks about. But the start of the passage Gumbel cites is:

    “Una peculiarità  è, ad esempio, il rilievo che all’interno della villetta di via della Pergola quasi non sono state rinvenute tracce di Amanda Marie Knox ““ se non quelle di cui si dirà  e riferibili all’omicidio ““ né di Raffaele Sollecito.”

    The phrase Gumbel deliberately left out is this: “se non quelle di cui si dirà  e riferibili all’omicidio”, which, roughly translated, is “except those which will be discussed and related to the murder.”  The Nencini Motivations document explicitly contains a clause that accommodates the other traces related to the murder. Gumbel’s point is provably false. As someone who arguably puts himself forth as an expert on the case, this omission is highly concerning.

    In Gumbel’s third point he highlights what is a minor error in the Nencini report. Calling out one word in a longer passage, Gumbel points out the report states that Sollecito’s DNA was found on the knife that is alleged as a murder weapon. If Gumbel truly read the report, as he claimed in a twitter exchange with me, he would be aware that the rest of the section that is contained in makes it clear that the finding is Knox’s DNA on the knife, not Sollecito’s. This minor error is hardly cause to overturn the full conviction.

    I could continue, but the rest of Gumbel’s article is largely a diatribe against the length of the trial and the Italian justice system. Gumbel cites an article written by Douglas Preston, another author who has financially benefited by being openly critical of the prosecutor in Knox’s case. Knox and Sollecito’s case has gone through three levels of the Italian court system, and back to appeals. Cases in the US that follow a similar path have not happened any faster than the one in Italy. For example, in the Scott Peterson case in the US his defense still filed appeals eight years after his first-level conviction.

    That the Guardian has allowed itself to be used as a platform to push the defense’s perspective is not only a disservice to the family of the murder victim who lives in the UK, but is also a disservice to the victim of a violent, brutal murder.


    Wednesday, January 21, 2015

    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #4: Chimera Examines The Most Inflammatory Angles

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    [A far from joyful dad once again tries to knock sense into his loose-cannon offspring]

    1. Overview Of This Series And Post

    Tomorrow is the day when the wraps come off the prosecutions’ targets in the book.

    This is also when Sollecito & Gumbel might try to justify themselves though they have a tough task ahead of them. For Sollecito and Gumbel (and also Knox and Kulman) their books actually constitute four kinds of problems;

    (1) their defamations of the Italian courts and justice system;
    (2) their defamations of many police, investigators and prosecutors who work within it,
    (3) their numerous lies by omission, the pesky facts they never mention; and
    (4) the unwitting truths and half-truths pointing to guilt, which the court may especially zero in on.

    As mentioned in the previous post, a separate new TJMK pasge will soon take the book apart definitively. To this many posters have contributed.

    Also we will have a new TJMK page on all of the lies of omission and who tends to avoid what area of evidence. .

    2. Examination By Chimera Of Sollecito Book

    In Part 1 Chimera addrresses problem (4) the truths and half-truths.

    In Part 2 Chimera comes up with an alternative synopsis of the book.

    In Part 3 Chimera Suggests why there could have been pre-meditation.

    1. Examination Of RS’s Truthfulness

    [page xv] ‘’....Often, they are more interested in constructing compelling narratives than in building up the evidence piece by piece, a task considered too prosaic and painstaking to be really interesting….’‘

    A main criticism by the Supreme Court of Judge Hellmann was that he looked at the evidence piece by piece, rather than trying to make a story of all the evidence as a whole.

    [page xvi] ‘’....She was Amanda the heartless when she didn’t cry over Meredith’s death and Amanda the hysterical manipulator when she did. Whatever she did””practice yoga, play Beatles songs, buy underwear””it was held against her.

    Well, when someone does not seem upset that their ‘friend’ is murdered, and then behaves in this fashion, would police not at least have their curiosity piqued?

    [page 20] ‘’... First, Guede could reasonably assume that the occupants of the house were either out for the night or away for the long weekend. Second, he had previously stayed over in the boys’ apartment downstairs””he fell asleep on the toilet one night in early October and ended up sprawled on the couch””so he knew the lay of the land. He had even met Meredith and Amanda briefly. And, third, since it was the first of the month, chances were good that the accumulated rent money for November was sitting in a pile somewhere in the house.

    In the upstairs apartment, Filomena took responsibility for gathering everyone’s cash and handing it over to the landlady. And it was Filomena’s bedroom window that would soon be smashed with a large rock…’‘

    This only makes sense if and only if:

    (a) Rudy knew the schedules of all 8 people in the house
    (b) Rudy may have slept downstairs, but implies he must have been upstairs at some point
    (c) Rudy knew that Filomena had all the money (that she took charge of it)
    (d) That rent would be paid in cash, not a cheque or bank automatic withdrawl. Which suggests…

    A failure on those parameters points to an inside job.

    [page 22] ‘’... My father took her advice, but because my cell phone was turned off, I didn’t receive the message until six the next morning.

    It was a desperately unlucky combination of circumstances. If my father had tried my cell and then called me on the home line””which he would have done, because he’s persistent that way””I would have had incontrovertible proof from the phone records that I was home that night. And the nightmare that was about to engulf me might never have begun.’‘

    First, it is an admission that the cell phone was turned off

    Second, it is an admission that had Francesco called him, he would have an alibi, suggesting he did not…

    [page 24] ‘’ ... Many Italians, including most of my family, could not fathom how she could go ahead with her shower after finding blood on the tap, much less put her wet feet on the bath mat, which was also stained, and drag it across the floor.’‘

    So, Amanda showered, even with blood on the tap and on the bathmat, and no one, not even Raffaele, can make sense of it. Perhaps it is just an odd way of being quirky.

    [page 26] ‘’... Then I pushed open Filomena’s door, which had been left slightly ajar, and saw that the place was trashed. Clothes and belongings were strewn everywhere. The window had a large, roundish hole, and broken glass was spread all over the floor.

    Okay, we thought, so there’s been a break-in. What we couldn’t understand was why Filomena’s laptop was still propped upright in its case on the floor, or why her digital camera was still sitting out in the kitchen. As far as we could tell, nothing of value was missing anywhere….’‘

    And this would be found to be suspicious by the police. An apparent break in, but nothing seems to be missing. And we haven’t even gotten to the spiderman climb yet.

    [page 27] ‘’... Amanda went into the Italian women’s bathroom alone, only to run back out and grab on to me as though she had seen a ghost. “The shit’s not in the toilet anymore!” she said. “What if the intruder’s still here and he’s locked himself in Meredith’s room?”

    Interesting. Perhaps Raffaele instinctively leaves poop in the toilet as well. Why would he not flush to make sure?

    [page 27 contains the following lines:]

    ‘’ ....Don’t do anything stupid.’‘
    ‘’ ....Now what do we do?’‘
    ‘’ ....My sister is in the Carabinieri.’‘

    These were supposedly in reference to the frantic attempts to see in Meredith’s room. Does anyone think there is some innuendo/hidden meaning?

    [page 29] ‘’... “No, nothing’s been taken.” I didn’t know that for sure, of course, and I should have been more careful about my choice of words. At the time, though, I thought I was just performing my civic duty by passing the information along. The only reason I was on the line was because Amanda’s Italian was not good enough for her to make the call herself.’‘

    This sounds innocuous enough, with the qualifiers, but without them:  ‘‘No, nothing’s been taken… I should have been more careful about my choice of words.”

    [page 33] ‘’.... As things spiraled out of control over the next several days, a senior investigator with the carabinieri in Perugia took it upon himself to call my sister and apologize, colleague to colleague. “If we had arrived ten minutes earlier,” he told Vanessa, “the case would have been ours. And things would have gone very differently.”

    This sounds eerily like an admission that things could have been tampered with, or ‘saved’, if only the ‘right’ people had been there in time.

    [page 35] ‘’... Amanda didn’t understand the question, so I answered for her, explaining that she’d taken a shower and then come back to my house. “Really, you took a shower?” Paola said. She was incredulous…’‘

    However, the book does not clarify why Paola was incredulous. Take your pick.

    (a) Amanda didn’t look or smell like she had a shower
    (b) Amanda showered in a blood soaked bathroom
    (c) Both ‘a’ and ‘b’

    [page 39] ‘’... In the moment, I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to make Amanda feel worse. The whole purpose of my being there was to comfort her. So I defended her, even beyond the point where I felt comfortable or could be said to be looking out for my own interests.’‘

    This is arguably the most true part of the book. He does have to comfort her, so she doesn’t talk. And it probably was uncomfortable.

    And ‘‘beyond the point where ... I could be said to be looking out for my own interests.’’ Notice that Raffaele does not say ‘‘beyond that point where I WAS looking out for my own interests. It only ‘looks’ like it, because it is very much in his interest - at that time - to pacify Amanda.

    [page 40] ‘’.... Italian newspapers reporting ‘Amanda could kill for a pizza’.’‘

    To most people, Raffaele could mean this signifies that killing and death did not affect her greatly, or that she is simply immature.

    It could also be an admission: Meredith’s death was over something extremely trivial, and Raffaele knew it.

    [page 40] ‘’...Why focus on her, and not on Meredith’s other friends? I wondered. She and Amanda were new acquaintances…’‘

    Exactly. Compared to what has been portrayed, they were not close friends, or even friends

    [page 41] ‘’... Amanda noticed the police’s sex obsession right away; they couldn’t stop asking her about the Vaseline pot and a vibrator they had found in the bathroom. The vibrator was a joke item, a little rubber bunny rabbit shaped to look like a vibrator and fashioned into a pendant, but the police seemed to find this difficult to accept. What about Meredith’s sex life? Amanda knew only that Meredith had left a boyfriend in England and was now involved with one of the men who lived downstairs, a twenty-two-year-old telecommunications student with a carefully sculpted beard and outsize earrings named Giacomo Silenzi. Amanda had helped Meredith out a couple times by giving her a condom from her supply. But Amanda had no idea how, or how often, Meredith had sex and didn’t feel comfortable fielding questions about it.’‘

    This is creepily ‘Knoxian’ in that Raffaele is deliberately leaking extremely personal details about Meredith. Is this a desire they share: to humiliate her deeper, in the public domain, far beyond what they already have done.

    [page 42] ‘’... A few days later, this episode would be distorted in the newspapers to make it seem as if the first thing we did after the murder was to buy sexy lingerie””specifically, a G-string””and tell each other how we couldn’t wait to try it out. The store owner, who did not speak English, corroborated the story in pursuit of his own brief moment in the spotlight. True, the surveillance video in the store showed us touching and kissing, but that was hardly a crime. I wasn’t making out with her in some vulgar or inappropriate way, just comforting her and letting her know I was there for her. Besides, there was nothing remotely sexy about Bubble. A much sexier underwear store was next door, and we didn’t set foot in…’‘

    Interesting. Raffaele says that this was blown out of proportion, yet his defense is that we didn’t do anything sexual, but if we did, it is not a crime, and besides, there was a better place next door.

    [page 43] ‘’... I realized I had not properly acknowledged my own discomfort with Amanda. I was not scandalized by her, in the way that so many others later said they were, but I shouldn’t have allowed her to climb all over me in the Questura, and I should have counseled her quietly not to complain so much. I understood the gallant side of being her boyfriend, but I could have given her better advice and protected myself in the process.’‘

    Translation: Amanda, quit whining so much. And while boning you in the police station may be fun, it is seriously jeopardizing my interests.

    [page 44] ‘’... She told them, quite openly, about a guy from Rome she went to bed with a few days before meeting me. She had no problem being open about her sex life, and that made her interrogators suspicious. How many men, they wondered, did she plan on getting through during her year in Perugia?

    Probably true, except for the conclusion. More likely they wondered: Why does she have to bring this up now?

    [page 46]’‘... My sister, Vanessa, made her own separate inquiries and felt much less reassured. The first time she called the Questura, they left her waiting on the line, even though she announced herself as a lieutenant in the carabinieri, and never took her call.
    The second time, she had herself put through from the carabinieri’s regional switchboard, to make it more official. This time she got through, but only to a junior policeman clearly her inferior. (In Italian law enforcement, protocol on such matters is followed scrupulously.) “Listen,” the man told her impatiently, “everything is fine.”

    “Is there someone I can talk to who is in charge of this case?” Vanessa insisted.

    This sounds like a very detailed (if true) attempt at subverting justice. Way to drop Vanessa in it, Raffy.

    [page 47] ‘’... The truth, though, was that the authorities were still clueless.’‘

    Don’t worry, they will get a clue soon enough.

    [page 48] ‘’... What did they have on us? Nothing of substance. But they did find our behavior odd, and we had no real alibi for the night of November 1 except each other, and we did not have lawyers to protect us, and we seemed to have a propensity for saying things without thinking them through. In other words, we were the lowest-hanging fruit, and the police simply reached out and grabbed us.’‘

    So, what does Sollecito list in just this paragraph?

    (a) Odd behaviour
    (b) No real alibi except each other
    (c) Saying things without thinking them through

    Can’t see why this would attract police attention…

    [page 49] ‘’... Not only did they have no physical evidence, they saw no need for any.’‘

    Well, odd behaviour, no real alibi,conflicting stories, and saying things through without thinking them through… oh, right, and that very detailed account of Patrik murdering Meredith, Sollecito ‘might’ be there, and Raffaele telling a pack of lies.

    I guess physical evidence would be overkill (pardon the pun). Sounds very Knoxian in the ‘there is no evidence’ denials.

    [page 50] ‘’... Carrying a small knife had been a habit of mine since I was a teenager””not for self-defense, mind you, just as an ornamental thing. I’d use one occasionally to peel apples or carve my name on tree trunks, but mostly I carried them around for the sake of it. Having a knife on me had become automatic, like carrying my wallet or my keys.’‘

    So the rumours of having a knife fetish are true? Thanks for confirming it.

    [page 50] ‘’... Besides, what kind of idiot killer would bring the murder weapon to the police station?’‘

    Wow - how to begin with this one…  Although, on a more manipulative level, was it not the other knife that actually delivered the fatal blow?

    [page 51] ‘’... My words in Italian””stai tranquillo””were the last my father would hear from me as a free man.’‘

    It could mean physically free. Could also mean not free as in forced to confront his actions.

    [page 51]  “You need to tell us what happened that night,” they began.

    “Which night?” I asked wearily. I was getting tired of the endless questioning. I don’t think they appreciated my attitude.

    “The night of November first.”

    I don’t think this is a drug haze. More just being arrogant and callous.

    [page 56] ‘’... I had been brought up to think the police were honest defenders of public safety. My sister was a member of the carabinieri, no less! Now it seemed to me they were behaving more like gangsters.’‘

    Another sign of entitlement showing. Surely, the little brother of a carabinieri officer should not have to be subjected to this nonsense.

    [page 56] ‘’... Something was exciting the police more than my pocketknife, and that was the pattern they had detected on the bottom of my shoes. By sheer bad luck, I was wearing Nikes that night, and the pattern of concentric circles on the soles instantly reminded my interrogators of the bloody shoe prints at the scene of the crime, which were made by Nikes too.

    I had no idea of any of this. All I knew was, the rest of the interrogation team piled back into the room and told me to take off my shoes.’‘

    Shoeprints placing a person at a crime scene? Why would that possibly be considered evidence?

    [page 59] ‘’... Then, at some point after midnight, an interpreter arrived. Amanda’s mood only worsened. She hadn’t remembered texting Patrick at all, so she was in no position to parse over the contents of her message. When it was suggested to her she had not only written to him but arranged a meeting, her composure crumbled; she burst into uncontrollable tears, and held her hands up to her ears as if to say, I don’t want to hear any more of this.’‘

    Depending on whether or not you believe Amanda’s ‘version’ of events, this could either be corroboration of her events, or corroboration she faked her fit.

    Minor detail: Sollecito was in a totally different part of the Questera, but hey, it’s just semantics.

    [page 61] ‘’...When I first found out what Amanda had signed her name to, I was furious. Okay, she was under a lot of pressure, as I had been, but how could she just invent stuff out of nowhere? Why would she drag me into something I had no part of? It soon transpired, of course, that she felt similarly about me. “What I don’t understand,” she wrote, as soon as she began to retract her statements, “is why Raffaele, who has always been so caring and gentle with me, would lie. . . . What does he have to hide?”

    It took us both a long time to understand how we had been manipulated and played against each other. It took me even longer to appreciate that the circumstances of our interrogations were designed expressly to extract statements we would otherwise never have made, and that I shouldn’t blame Amanda for going crazy and spouting dangerous nonsense…’‘

    -If Amanda got me locked up, I would be mad too
    -Yes, she did make stuff (about Patrik) out of nowhere
    -I was angry when Amanda asked ‘what I have to hide’
    -Yes, police tend to play suspects off each other
    -Yes, suspects try to avoid implicating each other
    -Yes, Amanda only spouted dangerous nonsense after you took her alibi

    This section is almost 100% true

    [page 62] ‘’... Even before dawn broke on November 6, the authorities had us where they wanted us. True, neither of us had confessed to murder. But what they had””a web of contradictions, witnesses pitted against each other, and a third suspect on whom to pin the crime””was an acceptable second best.’‘

    Also true, and great police work.

    [page 63] ‘’... I asked to talk to my family again. I said I needed at least to inform my thesis director where I was. “Where you’re going, a degree’s not going to do you any good,” came the answer.’‘

    Curious, he has just been arrested for murder and sexual assault, and among his first thoughts is his thesis. And didn’t he end up doing his Master’s thesis ... on himself?

    [page 64] ‘’... As soon as we walked into my apartment, a policeman named Armando Finzi said loudly that the place stank of bleach. That wasn’t correct. My cleaning lady had been through the day before and cleaned the tile floor with Lysoform, not bleach. Still, he insisted on mentioning the bleach a couple more times””the clear implication being that I’d needed something powerful to clean up a compromising mess.’‘

    Perhaps overanalysing this, but could Raffaele be flippantly thinking to himself: Nope, the cleaning lady used lysoform to clean up the mess. Wasn’t bleach, dudes.

    [page 77] ‘’... Even before Judge Matteini had finished reading the complaint against me, I blurted out that I didn’t know Patrick Lumumba and that any prints from my shoes found at Via della Pergola could only have been made before November 1. Immediately I ran into trouble because I had in fact met Patrick at his bar, on the night Amanda and I first got together. And I had no idea that the shoe prints in question were made in blood. In no time, I was flailing and suggesting, in response to the judge’s pointed questions, that maybe I picked up some of the blood on the floor when I walked around the house on November 2, the day the body was discovered. Even more unwisely, I speculated that someone might have stolen my shoes and committed the murder in them. It just did not occur to me that the shoe print evidence was wrong.

    At Raffaele’s first hearing:

    -He claims not to have met Patrick, (his co-accused), but admits later, that he has
    -He suggests that he may have picked up blood on the floor
    -He claims the shoes were stolen

    Why would Judge Matteini have reason to doubt his story?

    [page 78] ‘’... I felt like a fool describing my extensive knife collection and even described myself as a testa di cazzo, a dickhead, for having so many. My judgment and my self-confidence were sinking fast.

    “Perhaps the worst moment came when I was asked, for the umpteenth time, if Amanda had gone out on the night of the murder. I still had no clarity on this and could not answer the judge’s repeated questions without sounding evasive.”

    [page 80] ‘’... Matteini swallowed the prosecution’s story whole. The break-in was staged after the fact, she asserted””just as Mignini had. The murderer or murderers must therefore have got into the house with a set of keys, and Amanda was the only keyholder without a solid alibi for the night in question. Patrick Lumumba had the hots for.

    Meredith, Matteini theorized, and Amanda and I tagged along to experience something new and different. From my testimony at the hearing, Matteini concluded I was “bored by the same old evenings” and wanted to experience some “strong emotions.” (She moved my blog entry from October 2006, the date marked on the document, to October 2007, just weeks before the murder, which bolstered the argument.) She didn’t ascribe a specific motive to Amanda, assuming only that she must have felt the same way I did. The bloody footprints “proved” I was present at the scene of the murder, and my three-inch flick knife was “compatible with the possible murder weapon.” The house, she wrote, was “smeared with blood everywhere.”

    Substitute in Rudy Guede for Patrick, and this sounds somewhat plausible.

    [page 83] ‘’... Amanda recovered her lucidity faster than I did. The day we were arrested, she wrote a statement in English that all but retracted what she had signed the night before. “In regards to this “˜confession,’ “ she wrote, “I want to make clear that I’m very doubtful of the verity of my statements because they were made under the pressures of stress, shock and extreme exhaustion.” She was still conjuring up images of Patrick as the murderer, but she added, “These things seem unreal to me, like a dream, and I am unsure if they are real things that happened or just dreams in my head.”

    The next day, she wrote a second, more confident statement: “I DID NOT KILL MY FRIEND . . . But I’m very confused, because the police tell me that they know I was at my house when she was murdered, which I don’t remember. They tell me a lot of things I don’t remember.” Then she gave a substantially more accurate account of the night of November 1 than I was coming up with at the time.’‘

    All this does is confirm that much of the confusing, manipulative statements from Amanda exist. Gee thanks Raffaele.

    [page 86] ‘’... short story about date rape that Amanda had submitted to a University of Washington creative-writing class was held up as evidence of her warped criminal mind. A Myspace video of her boasting about the number of shots she had downed at a party became an excuse to depict her as an alcohol-fueled harpy. I was described as “crazy,” based on a line I’d written in a blog entry, and held up to ridicule for a photograph, taken during a high-spirited moment of fun in my first year in Perugia, in which I was wrapped from head to foot in toilet paper, brandishing a machete in one hand and a bottle of pink alcohol in the other.’‘

    “Amanda does lots of alcohol, write rape stories, and I dress in toilet paper, wielding a machete. Nothing to see here, people.”

    [page 87] ‘’... I knew a lot of the coverage of the case itself was flawed. It was reported, for example, that the police had found bleach receipts at my house, strongly suggesting I had purchased materials to clean up the crime scene. But my cleaning lady didn’t use bleach, and the only receipts the police found from November 1 onward were for pizza. I wouldn’t have needed to buy bleach, anyway, because I had some left over from my previous cleaning lady. It had sat untouched for months.’‘

    “Nope, I didn’t need to buy bleach for the cleanup, I already had it.”

    [page 88] ‘’... Then came Maori. He told me that he too carried pocketknives from time to time. But he didn’t seem too interested in connecting with me beyond such superficial niceties. I felt he didn’t entirely trust me. His game plan, which became clear over a series of meetings, was to dissociate me as much as possible from Amanda. And that was it. He did not have a clear strategy to undermine the prosecution’s evidence on the knife and the shoe print, because””as he indicated to me””he believed there might be something to it. ‘’

    Which means: “I don’t really believe you are innocent, the evidence seems too strong. But for your sake, separate yourself from this mentally unstable woman.”

    Sounds very likely.

    [page 90] ‘’... I even allowed myself a little optimism: my computer, I decided, would show if I was connected to the Internet that night and, if so, when, and how often. Unless Amanda and I had somehow made love all night long, pausing only to make ourselves dinner and nod off to sleep, the full proof of our innocence would soon be out in the open.

    According to the police, it showed no activity from the time we finished watching Amélie at 9:10 p.m. until 5:30 the next morning.

    That sounded all wrong to me, and my defense team’s technical experts would later find reasons to doubt the reliability of this finding. But there would be no easy way out of the mess Amanda and I were now in.’‘

    Wishful thinking to form a coherent alibi or defense. Indeed, if only it was that simple.

    [page 91] ‘’...Still, there was something I could not fathom. How did Meredith’s DNA end up on my knife when she’d never visited my house? I was feeling so panicky I imagined for a moment that I had used the knife to cook lunch at Via della Pergola and accidentally jabbed Meredith in the hand. Something like that had in fact happened in the week before the murder. My hand slipped and the knife I was using made contact with her skin for the briefest of moments. Meredith was not hurt, I apologized, and that was that. But of course I wasn’t using my own knife at the time. There was no possible connection.’

    I imagined this happened? Is amnesia or hallucinating contagious? I’m surprised he did not have a vision that he saw Patrik attacking Meredith.

    On another note: giving a blatantly false account of how a victim’s DNA ended up on your knife seems a bit suspicious.

    [page 93] ‘’... The nuts and bolts of the investigation, the hard evidence, kept yielding good things for us. We were told that my Nikes had tested negative for blood and for Meredith’s DNA. So had my car, and everything else I had touched around the time of the murder. Even the mop Amanda and I carried back and forth on the morning of November 2, an object of particular suspicion, was reported to be clean.

    Well, I have no doubt that the AMERICAN media reported this to be the case….

    And ‘the mop Amanda and I carried back and forth…?’

    [page 94] ‘’... During a conversation with her mother in prison, they reported, Amanda had blurted out, “I was there, I cannot lie about that.” She seemed not to realize the conversation was being recorded, and the police picked up on it right away.’‘

    Amanda again places herself at the scene, but again, there is a simple explanation. Amanda being Amanda?

    [page 94] ‘’... his time the papers quoted what they said was an extract fromher diary. “I don’t remember anything,” the passage read, “but maybe Raffaele went to Meredith’s house, raped and killed her, and then put my fingerprints on the knife back at his house while I was asleep.”

    Of course, Amanda writes that someone planted her fingerprints. Odd, as I think that no one ever claimed her prints were on the knife. Why would she think they were?

    This needs to be said: What the hell is U of W teaching in their ‘creative writing’ program?

    [page 97] ‘’... I remember watching the news of Guede’s arrest on the small-screen TV in my cell and seeing the Perugia police all puffed up with pride about catching him. If anything, I felt happier than they did, because Guede was a complete stranger to me. The relief was palpable. All along I had worried the murderer would turn out to be someone I knew and that I’d be dragged into the plot by association. Now I had one less thing to worry about. Not that I wasn’t still wary: so much invented nonsense had been laid at my door I was still half-expecting the authorities to produce more.’

    The ‘real’ killer is caught, and you are worried more things may be invented? Interesting.

    [page 98] ‘’...Lumumba had every right to be angry; he had spent two weeks in lockup for no reason. He had been able to prove that Le Chic stayed open throughout the evening of November 1, producing an eyewitness, a Swiss university professor, who vouched for his presence that night. One would expect his anger to be directed as much toward Mignini, who threw him in prison without checking the facts, as it was toward Amanda. But Lumumba and his strikingly aggressive lawyer, Carlo Pacelli, could find only vicious things to say about Amanda from the moment he got out of jail””even though he had not, in fact, fired her and remained friendly with her for several days after the murder.’‘

    True, except why be mad at Mignini? It is Amanda who falsely accused him, not Mignini. But again, minor details.

    [page 107] ‘’... Papà  was spinning like a dervish to clear my name, but not everyone he hired was as helpful as he hoped. One consultant whom he asked to monitor the Polizia Scientifica demanded eight thousand euros up front, only to prove reluctant to make overt criticisms of the police’s work, the very thing for which he’d been hired. A forensic expert who also seemed a little too close to the police charged four thousand euros for his retainer with the boast, “I’m expensive, but I’m good.” He wasn’t. A computer expert recommended by Luca Maori didn’t know anything about Macs, only PC’s.’‘

    That first line is a bit disturbing. ‘Not everyone he hired was as helpful as he hoped.’ This can be easily interpretted as shopping around for an expert of ‘hired gun’.

    [page 110] ‘’... Amanda and I came in for what was by now a familiar drubbing. The judges said my account of events was “unpardonably implausible.” Indeed, I had a “rather complex and worrying personality” prone to all sorts of impulses. Amanda, for her part, was not shy about having “multiple sex partners” and had a “multifaceted personality, detached from reality.” Over and above the flight risk if we were released from prison, the judges foresaw a significant danger that we would make up new fantastical scenarios to throw off the investigation. In Amanda’s case, they said she might take advantage of her liberty to kill again.’‘

    Most rational people would come to the same conclusions.

    [page 112] ‘’... Since I had no such testimony to offer, I did the Italian equivalent of taking the Fifth: I availed myself, as we say, of the right not to respond.

    I found some satisfaction in that, but also frustration, because I had at last worked out why Amanda did not leave””could not have left””my house on the night of the murder. She didn’t have her own key, so if she’d gone out alone, she would have had to ring the doorbell and ask me to buzz her back in. Even if I’d been stoned or asleep when she rang, I would have remembered that. And it didn’t happen.’‘

    Hmm… I swear I am innocent, but plead the fifth ammendment. And I am not positive Amanda did not leave, but ad hoc have worked out that she must not have.

    [page 112] ‘’...Obviously, I wanted to shout the news to the world. But I also understood that telling Mignini now would have been a gift to him; it would only have bought him time to figure out a way around it.’‘

    “I could tell a certain version of events to the prosecutor, but if I did that now, he would only have time to discover the holes in that story.”

    [page 113] ‘’... I knew the Kerchers had hired an Italian lawyer, Francesco Maresca, whom they picked off a short list provided by the British embassy. I addressed my letter to him, saying how sorry I was for everything that had happened and expressing a wish that the full truth would soon come out.

    I was naive enough to believe that Maresca would be sympathetic.’‘

    Knox was criticised for fake attempts to reach out to the victim’s family, and had been told to act more like a defendant. Interesting that it started so much earlier.

    [page 115] ‘’... Regrettably, Guede’s shoes were not available, presumably because he ditched them; they were not at his apartment and they were not among his possessions when he was arrested in Germany.’‘

    Very interesting. Raffaele believes that the ‘murderer’s shoes’ were not available, and may have been ditched. This seems to be more than just speculation on his part.

    [page 117] ‘’... Mignini questioned Amanda again on December 17, and she, unlike me, agreed to answer his questions in the presence of her lawyers. She was more composed now and gave him nothing new to work with. She couldn’t have been present at the murder, she insisted, because she’d spent all night with me.’‘

    How does this not sound incredibly incriminating? I refused to talk, though Amanda agreed to, but only with lawyers. And does this not sound like Amanda was better able to stonewall the investigation?

    [page 121] ‘’... Instead, he tried to control the damage and talked to every reporter who called him. “The most plausible explanation,” he said to most of them, “is that the bra had been worn by Amanda as well, and Raffaele touched it when she was wearing it.”

    There were two problems with this statement. First, it was so speculative and far-fetched it did nothing to diminish the perception that I was guilty. And, second, it showed that my father””my dear, straight-arrow, ever-optimistic, overtrusting father””still couldn’t stop assuming that if the police or the prosecutor’s office was saying something, it must be so.

    There are 3 possibilities here, all bad.

    (a) This entire scenario was made up, and like the ‘my shoes were stolen’, only leaves everyone shaking their heads in disbelief.

    (b) Amanda actually had worn the bra BEFORE and returned it without washing it. Remember what this woman tends to think when she sees blood. Ew.

    (c) Amanda wore the bra AFTER Meredith was murdered, and that she and Raffaele fooled around after. Not too farfetched when you remember that Raffaele kept the murder weapon as a souvenir.

    [page 122] ‘’... Along with the Albanian, we had to contend with a seventy-six-year-old woman by the name of Nara Capezzali, who claimed she had heard a bloodcurdling scream coming from Meredith’s house at about 11:00 p.m. on the night of the murder, followed by sounds of people running through the streets.’‘

    Yes, this confirms at least part of Amanda’s account that night. Yes, she seemed to vaguely remember Patrik killing Meredith, and wasn’t sure if Raffaele was there, but the scream detail is corroborated.

    [page 125] ‘’... As my time alone stretched out into weeks and then months, I had to let go of everything that was happening and hold on to other, more permanent, more consoling thoughts: my family and friends, the memory of my mother, the simple pleasures I’d enjoyed with Amanda, the peace that came from knowing that neither of us had done anything wrong.

    If they want to kill me this way, I remember thinking, let them go ahead. I’m happy to have lived life as I did, and to have made the choices I made.’‘

    Hmm… so he finds peace being locked away for things he did not do?

    More likely, Raffaele is coming to terms with the inevitable consequences of life in prison.

    [page 129] ‘’... The one victory we eked out was a finding that we should have been told we were under criminal investigation before our long night of interrogations in the Questura. The statements we produced would not be admissible at trial.’‘

    Do I really need to explain this one?

    [page 150] ‘’... I talked about Amanda with Filippo, my cellmate, and he listened, just as I had listened to his problems. One day, though, he told me he was bisexual, and his eyes started to brighten visibly when he looked at me. Then he burst into tears and tried to caress my face.’‘

    Given the overlap between Waiting to be Heard and Honor Bound, did the ‘authors’ collaborate?

    [page 151] ‘’... My father hired a telecommunications expert to help resolve a few other mysteries from the night of the murder. The prosecution had given no adequate explanation for a series of calls registered on Meredith’s English cell phone after she’d returned from her friends’ house around 9:00 p.m., and many of them seemed baffling, assuming they were made””as the prosecution argued””by Meredith herself. We believed Meredith was dead by the time of the last two calls, and our expert Bruno Pellero intended to help us prove that.’‘

    This sounds disturbingly like another attempt to subvert justice.

    [page 154] ‘’... She also acknowledged that a contaminated or improperly analyzed DNA sample could, in theory, lead to an incorrect identification.’‘

    Wait, weren’t those same people involved in the finding the evidence against Guede? Right, that evidence is clean.

    [page 156] ‘’... Judge Micheli issued his ruling at the end of October. On the plus side, he found Guede guilty of murder and sentenced him to thirty years behind bars in an accelerated trial requested by Guede himself. Judge Micheli also accepted our evidence that it wouldn’t have been that difficult to throw a rock through Filomena’s window and climb the wall.

    But, Spider-Man or no Spider-Man, he still didn’t believe Guede got into the house that way. He argued that Filomena’s window was too exposed and that any intruder would have run too great a risk of discovery by climbing through it. Therefore, he concluded, Amanda and I must have let him in. There seemed to be no shaking the authorities out of their conviction that the break-in was staged.’‘

    So, Judge Micheli is a fine judge who saw Rudy Guede for who he is and convicted him, yet he is so poor a judge he ruled that Amanda and I had to be involved?

    Didn’t Knox say very similar things in her December 2013 email to Appeal Court Judge Nencini?

    [page 160] ‘’... Still, the prosecution jumped all over [Quintavalle] and later put him on the stand to bolster the argument that Amanda and I had spent that morning wiping the murder scene clean of our traces””but not, curiously, Guede’s. It was one of their more dishonest, not to mention absurd, arguments, because any forensics expert could have told them such a thing was physically impossible. Still, it was all they had, and they single-mindedly stuck to it.’‘

    Depending on how you view this, it could be an ad hoc admission that yes, selectively cleaning up wasn’t really possible, as the evidence was all intermingled.

    [page 167] ‘’... I was pushing for another sort of change, a single trial team to defend Amanda and me together. I was told right away that this was out of the question, but I don’t think my logic was wrong. The only way either of us would get out of this situation, I reasoned, was if we stuck together. If the prosecution drove a wedge between us, we would more than likely both be doomed.’‘

    This seems to justify Guede’s suspicions that his co-defendants would team up on him.

    [page 169] ‘’... Stefanoni and Mignini were holding out on that information, and we needed to pry it from them quickly before more damage was done. The shots would ultimately be called by the judge, and we hadn’t had a lot of luck with judges so far.’‘

    Why would you need ‘luck’ from a judge?

    [page 173] ‘’... No matter how much we demanded to be heard, no matter how much we sought to refute the grotesque cartoon images of ourselves and give calm, reasoned presentations of the truth, we never escaped the feeling that our words were tolerated rather than listened to; that the court was fundamentally uninterested in what we had to say.’‘

    That is probably true. No one cares why Amanda’s vibrator is on full display.

    And yes, you did demand to be heard. Perhaps, if you had agreed to full cross examination, you would know what the judges and prosecutors would be interested in hearing.

    [page 173] ‘’... A week later, Meredith’s English friends took the stand and testified with such uniform consistency it was hard to think of them as distinct individuals. Robyn Butterworth, Amy Frost, and Sophie Purton all said that Meredith had been unhappy with Amanda’s standards of hygiene, particularly her forgetfulness about flushing the toilet. It sounded almost as if they were reading from a prepared script. Meredith, they agreed, had found Amanda a little too forward for keeping her condoms and what looked like a vibrator in their shared bathroom. And, they said, Amanda had acted weirdly in the Questura.

    That was it. They mentioned nothing positive about the relationship. No word on Meredith and Amanda’s socializing together, or attending Perugia’s annual chocolate festival, or going to the concert on the night Amanda and I met.’‘

    Yes, the prosecution case does seem stronger when their witnesses are consistent. Absolutely right.

    Strangely, Meredith’s English friends also did not talk about how compassionate Amanda was at the memorial. Wait a minute….

    [page 174] ‘’... Amanda arrived in court wearing a T-shirt with the words ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE emblazoned in huge pink letters, to mark Valentine’s Day. It seemed she wanted to find a way to defuse the English girls’ ill will toward her, but it didn’t work.’‘

    No kidding.

    [page 186] ‘’... Meanwhile, we had to worry about Amanda taking the stand. Her lawyers decided that the best way to refute the stories about her wayward personality was to have the court take a good, hard look at her up close. But my lawyers were deeply concerned she would put her foot in her mouth, in ways that might prove enduringly harmful to both of us. If she deviated even one iota from the version of events we now broadly agreed on, it could mean a life sentence for both of us.’‘

    Amanda puts her foot in her mouth? Yup.

    “The truth we agreed on”?? Come on, you actually put this in the book?

    [page 193] ‘’... My father was all over the place. He knew exactly how bad the news was, but he wanted to shield me as best he could. “Whatever happens, don’t worry,” he told me. “There’s always the appeal. The work we’ve done won’t go to waste.”

    And indeed, the first (now annulled) appeal did ‘save’ them.

    [page 195] ‘’... Mignini had to scrabble around to explain how Amanda, Guede, and I could have formulated a murder plan together without any obvious indication that we knew each other. Guede, he postulated, could have offered himself as our drug pusher.’‘

    “I can explain that. Amanda and I are admitted drug users. We smeared Guede as a drug dealer. Reasonable people might believe that there is some connection to drugs.”

    [page 204] ‘’... The next piece of bad news came down within three weeks of our being found guilty. Rudy Guede’s sentence, we learned, had been cut down on appeal from thirty years to sixteen. The thinking of the appeals court was that if Amanda and I were guilty, then Guede couldn’t serve a sentence greater than ours. If I had supplied the knife and Amanda had wielded it, as Mignini and Comodi postulated and Judge Massei and his colleagues apparently accepted, we needed to receive the stiffer punishment.’‘

    Yes, the thinking of the courts, and those pesky short-form trial sentence deductions that are mandatory.

    ‘’[page 204] ...I didn’t think I could feel any worse, but this was an extra slap in the face and it knocked me flat. Not only were Amanda and I the victims of a grotesque miscarriage of justice, but Meredith’s real killer, the person everybody should have been afraid of, was inching closer to freedom. It wasn’t just outrageous; it was a menace to public safety.’‘

    Yes, it was a miscarriage in that Amanda and I didn’t get the life sentences Mignini called for, and that Meredith’s real killer, Amanda, would soon get her freedom via Hellmann.

    [page 219] ‘’... My family was not beating up on Amanda entirely without cause. What I did not know at the time, because they preferred not to fill me in, was that they were exploring what it would take for the prosecution to soften or drop the case against me. The advice they received was almost unanimous:’‘

    Although the deal itself is illegal, I have no doubt that the Sollecito family at least explored the option.

    [page 258] ‘’... Judge Hellmann’s sentencing report was magnificent: 143 pages of close argument that knocked down every piece of evidence against us and sided with our experts on just about every technical issue.’‘

    That is true, with one huge omission: the defense only cherry picked a few small pieces of evidence. Yes, it ‘knocked down every piece of evidence we chose to contest.’

    2. Synopsis Of “Honor Bound”

    (20) The robbery that night was perfect, assuming the perp had the inside info.

    (22) My cellphone was turned off.

    (22) If my father called the land line I would have an alibi.

    (24) I cannot make sense of showering in a bloody bathroom.

    (26) Despite the break in, nothing had been taken.

    (27) Someone did not flush the toilet, and I won’t either.

    (27) The following dialogue:

    ‘’ ....Don’t do anything stupid.’‘

    ‘’ ....Now what do we do?’‘

    ‘’ ....My sister is in the Carabinieri.’‘

    (29) I should have been more careful about my choice of words when I said

    ‘’ .... Nothing has been taken.’‘

    (35) The police were shocked/disbelieving Amanda just took a shower.

    (39) Things would be okay if my Carabinieri sister had helped.

    (40) I defended Amanda, beyond the point of looking after my own interests.

    (40) Amanda could kill for something minimal, even a pizza.

    (40) Amanda and Meredith were not friends, despite living together.

    (41) Amanda and I share embarrassing sexual information about the victim.

    (42) We weren’t misbehaving in the lingerie shop, but if we were, it was taken out of context.

    (43) Amanda whined, and we fooled around in the police station. Maybe not a good idea.

    (44) Amanda does not shut up about her sex life.

    (46) Vanessa made inquiries on my behalf.

    (47) Prior to our arrest, the authorities were clueless.

    (48) We behaved oddly, had no real alibi, and said things without thinking.

    (49) We are not guilty only because there is no physical evidence.

    (50) I like to carry knives.

    (51) I had trouble remembering the date Meredith was killed.

    (56) My sister works for the carabinieri. Why am I even here?

    (56) My shoes are similar to ones found at the crime scene

    (59/60) Amanda gave the false statement regarding Patrik.

    (61) The police got Amanda and I to say things against each other.

    (62) Amanda and I spun a web of contradictions.

    (63) This is going to mess up my graduation.

    (64) The smell wasn’t bleach, it was lysoform

    (77) I never met Patrik, my co-accused (or did I)? 

    The shoes might have dragged blood, or might have been stolen.

    (78) I collect a lot of knives, and don’t remember if Amanda left.

    (83) Amanda made admissions she tried to retract.

    (86) Amanda and I engage in alarming behaviour, such as writing rape stories, and taking photos with weapons

    (87) I had access to bleach, receipts or not.

    (88) My lawyer thinks the evidence is strong, and wants me away from Amanda.

    (90) I hope there is evidence on my computer that clears me.

    (91) I imagined that the DNA on the knife came from a cooking accident.

    (93) Amanda and I carried a mop back and forth for some reason.

    (94) Amanda, in a jail recorded call, places herself at the scene.

    (94) Amanda writes that I may have planted her fingerprints on the knife.

    (97) Rudy Guede is caught, but I fear I may get named in other things.

    (98) Lumumba is released, angry at Amanda for false accusation.

    (107) Dad tried to cherrypick experts who would get me out.

    (110) The courts saw us as unstable and potential flight risks.

    (112) I decline to answer.

    (112) I don’t want the prosecutor checking my story

    (113) I creepily tried to reach out to the Kerchers, despite being accused, just like Amanda.

    (115) Rudy should have kept his shoes in order to exonerate Amanda and I.

    (117) I still refused to talk.  Amanda did, with lawyers.

    (121) Amanda has been wearing Meredith’s underwear and without washing it.

    (122) A witness heard Meredith scream, just as Amanda described.

    (125) I am at peace with everything.

    (129) The courts threw out our statements at the police station.

    (150) I had a memorable encounter with a bisexual inmate (same as Amanda)

    (151) My dad tried to find an alternate explanation for the phone evidence.

    (154) The evidence against Rudy Guede is rock solid. The evidence against me is contaminated.

    (156) Micheli is a great judge. He convicted Guede.

    (156) Micheli is an idiot judge.  He believes Amanda and I were involved.

    (160) It was foolish to think we could selectively clean the crime scene.

    (167) In order to save ourselves, Amanda and I teamed up against Rudy.

    (169) We weren’t getting the judges we wanted.

    (173) We did not shut up, but had nothing helpful to say.

    (173) Meredith’s English friends gave consistent testimony that did not help us.

    (174) the ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE t-shirt was a bad idea.

    (186) I worried about Amanda testifying, saying dumb things, and deviating from our ‘version’

    (193) We knew the trial was doomed, but there was the appeal. (Hellmann)?

    (195) For all the ‘drug dealer’ and ‘drug user’ name calling, prosecutors seemed to think this might be about drugs.

    (204) Guede’s sentence was cut from 30 years to 16.  What an injustice for us… I mean Meredith.

    (219) Legally speaking, it would be better to split from Amanda.

    (258) Hellmann’s report knocked down the evidence we chose to present.

    3. Premeditation And Why RS Goes No Further

    The real reason Sollecito goes no further could be in as in the title ‘‘Honor Bound’‘.  Many altruistic people may interpret this as behaving, or conducting themselves honourably. 

    But take a more shallow and selfish view.  It could just refer to being SEEN as honourable.  I think everyone here would agree that RS and AK are quite narcissistic and arrogrant.  And how manly to be protecting the women in your life.

    The truth does set you free - except only when the truth is much worse than what the assumptions are. I repeat, the truth sets you free, except when it is actually worse.

    What could be worse? Premeditation. Far beyond what has been suggested.

    1) Raffaele himself suggests that doing a robbery at the house at that time would be ideal.

    This makes sense if:

    (a) Rudy knew that Filomena had all the money (that she took charge of it)
    (b) That rent would be paid in cash, not a cheque or bank automatic withdrawl.

    So, by this reasoning, there would be over 1000 Euros in cash at that time. Of course, the average household does not carry that much, and normally, there would be no reason to think so. The date had to be planned. It also lends credence to the theory that this really was about money, and he had help.

    2) The fact that Laura and Filomena were gone, as were the men downstairs. Really, how often does it happen, and how would an outsider know?

    3) The trip to Gubbio. Does anyone know if either AK or RS were heavily into travel, or was this a one time thing? My point being that it could have been to establish an alibi, they just didn’t expect to still be there when the police showed up.

    4) The fact that Rudy Guede was brought in, when he had no legitimate reason to be upstairs. RS could explain away DNA or prints, but not RG. Even if it really was just about stealing money, would there not be some trace of him left when the theft was reported.

    And if murder was the plan all along, there would still be some trace of him.

    5) Purchasing bleach. Everyone had assumed that it was done after the fact to clean up, but there is another thought. What if there already was bleach available in the home, and this purchase was merely a replacement as an afterthought?

    6) The knife in Raffaele’s home. What if Amanda chose to bring a knife that Raffaele would not be able to ditch, simply so that should suspicion fall on them, there would be a knife to implicate Raffy? Remember, Amanda already made statements that point to him. Maybe those weren’t her first attempts.

    Of course, I did make the suggestion that they were keeping the knives for trophies.

    7) The ‘alibi’ email home. Sure, it could have been written on the spot. However, it seems too long and detailed for that. Yes, some details would need to be added (like the poop), but who is to say she didn’t start working on it BEFORE the murder?

    8) Keeping the text to Patrik to say ‘see you later’. Amanda says she doesn’t keep messages on her phone, but she had this one, and several days after the murder. Could this have been saved as a ‘backup plan’ in case naming Rudy does not work for some reason. Besides, don’t all black guys look the same? (sarcasm).

    9) Yes, there was a bloody shoeprint (believed to be AK), but I don’t recall anyone saying her shoes were missing, or any other clothes she had. And she supposedly did not have many clothes. So, did she have ‘extras’ for that night?

    10) Wiping down the home (even if it was botched), would take time, and ‘supplies’. A chronic slob just happens to have all these cleaning supplies on hand, or were they acquired before?

    So, I suspect the real refusal to talk is that the full truth is a lot worse than any game or drugged up prank. The time and location is chosen, no clothes are ‘noticed’ missing, and Amanda has at least 3 potential patzies: Rudy, Raffaele, and Patrik. Remember, Guede and Lumumba are on ‘the list’ Knox ended up writing for Rita Ficarra. And AK and RS are scheduled to go on a trip that would take them away with a plausible alibi. Cleaning supplies may already be there.

    Call me cynical: but I see all the signs of staging, and premeditation. Yes, the act itself was messy, but there are very obvious marks of forethought.

    So. What will the judges of Cassation be seeing?


    Sunday, January 18, 2015

    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #3: Targeted Claims On Which Sollecito & Gumbel May Fold

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Dr Giuliano Bartolomei of the chief prosecutor’s office of the Florence court brings the case

    1. The Court Contenders

    Judge Dolores Limongi will preside over Sollecito’s new trial in Florence this thursday and Dr Giuliano Bartolomei will prosecute.

    No word about whether the hapless bungler Andrew Gumbel will attend, but Sollecito has said he will be there.  Sollecito’s defense team seems rather weak. After Sollecito’s own lawyers for his murder trial publicly renounced the most damaging claims in his book (see below) his family turned to Alfredo Brizioli for help.

    Brizioli is a Perugia lawyer who was accused of being one of those trying to disguise the murdered Narducci’s involvement in the Monster of Florence killings. That shadowy group has just taken another hit in Italian eyes - a Milan court has ruled that Narducci, the probable murderer in the Monster of Florence crimes, was indeed himself murdered and there exists powerful evidence for this.

    2. The Specific Charges

    Charges against Sollecito are of two kinds: criminal defamation of both the justice system itself and of some of those who work within it. In US and UK terms criminal contempt of court comes close.

    Criminal contempt charges become separate charges from the underlying case. Unlike civil contempt sanctions, criminal contempt charges may live on after resolution of the underlying case.

    One charged with criminal contempt generally gets the constitutional rights guaranteed to criminal defendants, including the right to counsel, right to put on a defense, and the right to a jury trial in certain cases. Charges of criminal contempt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

    However, incarceration for contempt may begin immediately, before the contempt charge is adjudicated and the sentence decided. Depending on the jurisdiction and the case, the same judge who decided to charge a person with contempt may end up presiding over the contempt proceedings.

    Criminal contempt can bring punishment including jail time and/or a fine.

     

    In this case a guilty verdict can open the tidal gates to criminal prosecutions and civil suits against Sharlene Martin and the Simon & Schuster team and all those many who repeated ANY of Sollecito’s and Gumbel’s false claims as gospel in their own books and online in the US and UK.

    3. Nature Of The Claims

    Typically the modus operandi of Knox and Sollecito and their factions in their US campaign (this falls flat in Italy) is to make some very damaging core claims, while leaving hundreds of pesky truths ignored.

    Pesky truths helpfully ignored by most of the US and UK media too who apart from freelance Andrea Vogt have still done almost zero translation of their own. The previous post below shows a good example of this. Sollecito makes 20 false claims in a few pages. Dozens of facts that would belie those claims are simply left out.

    The false claims continue (with considerable duplication for emphasis) throughout the 250-plus pages of the book.

    Sollecito’s claims were published only in English. That was in the apparent hope that things would be reversed by political pressure from the US. Perhaps the US would let Sollecito come and live and stiff the Italian courts.

    The Italian flagship crime show Porta a Porta wrecked that unusual and in-itself damaging strategy only 10 days out - with Francesco Sollecito’s and Luca Maori’s help.

    The three worst-case examples quoted here and some others became public when Andrea Vogt and Italian reporters pointed to them after an October hearing. Page numbers are for the hard-cover book. 



    Raffaele Sollecito retained Alfredo Brizioli after he burned his trial lawyers in his book

    4. Example Claim One

    Our brief response to this for now is that this felony attempt to frame the prosecutor for a serious crime was entirely made up. His own father and both his trial lawyers publicly said so. There was never a police or prosecution bias against Knox or toward Sollecito. As was very obvious at trial in 2009 the case against both was equally strong (an example of a key fact left out). Knox herself would seem to have a reason to get mad with Sollecito for this shafting - and in fact she did.

    [ Page 219-222] My family was not beating up on Amanda entirely without cause. What I did not know at the time, because they preferred not to fill me in, was that they were exploring what it would take for the prosecution to soften or drop the case against me. The advice they received was almost unanimous: the more I distanced myself from Amanda, the better. The legal community in Perugia was full of holes and leaks, and my family learned all sorts of things about the opinions being bandied about behind the scenes, including discussions within the prosecutor’s office. The bottom line: Mignini, they were told, was not all that interested in me except as a gateway to Amanda. He might indeed be willing to acknowledge I was innocent, but only if I gave him something in exchange, either by incriminating Amanda directly or by no longer vouching for her.

    I’m glad my family did not include me in these discussions because I would have lost it completely. First, my uncle Giuseppe approached a lawyer in private practice in Perugia - with half an idea in his head that this new attorney could replace Maori - and asked what I could do to mitigate my dauntingly long sentence. The lawyer said I should accept a plea deal and confess to some of the lesser charges. I could, for instance, agree that I had helped clean up the murder scene but otherwise played no part in it. “He’d get a sentence of six to twelve years,”Â the lawyer said, “but because he has no priors the sentence would be suspended and he’d serve no more jail time.”Â

    To their credit, my family knew I would never go for this. It made even them uncomfortable to contemplate me pleading guilty to something I had not done. It was, as my sister, Vanessa, put it, “not morally possible.”

    The next line of inquiry was through a different lawyer, who was on close terms with Mignini and was even invited to the baptism of Mignini’s youngest child that summer. (Among the other guests at the baptism was Francesco Maresca, the Kerchers’ lawyer, who had long since aligned himself with Mignini in court.) This lawyer said he believed I was innocent, but he was also convinced that Amanda was guilty. He gave my family the strong impression that Mignini felt the same way. If true - and there was no way to confirm that - it was a clamorous revelation. How could a prosecutor believe in the innocence of a defendant and at the same time ask the courts to sentence him to life imprisonment? The lawyer offered to intercede with Mignini, but made no firm promises. He wasn’t willing to plead my cause, he said, but he would listen to anything the prosecutor had to offer.

    Over the late spring and summer of 2010, my father used this lawyer as a back channel and maneuvered negotiations to a point where they believed Mignini and Comodi would be willing to meet with Giulia Bongiorno and hear what she had to say. When Papà   presented this to Bongiorno, however, she was horrified and said she might have to drop the case altogether because the back channel was a serious violation of the rules of procedure. A private lawyer has no business talking to a prosecutor about a case, she explained, unless he is acting with the express permission of the defendant. It would be bad enough if the lawyer doing this was on my defense team; for an outside party to undertake such discussions not only risked landing me in deeper legal trouble, it also warranted disciplinary action from the Ordine degli Avvocati, the Italian equivalent of the Bar Association.

    My father was mortified. He had no idea how dangerous a game he had been playing and wrote a letter to Bongiorno begging her to forgive him and stay on the case. He was at fault, he said, and it would be wrong to punish her client by withdrawing her services when I didn’t even know about the back channel, much less approve it. To his relief, Bongiorno relented.

    My family, though, did not. Whenever they came to visit they would suggest some form of compromise with the truth. Mostly they asked why I couldn’t say I was asleep on the night of the murder and had no idea what Amanda got up to.


    5. Example Claim 2

    Our brief response to this for now is that the case against Sollecito was being driven by Judge Matteini and Judge Ricciarelli and Judge Micheli, not Dr Mignini (an example of a key fact left out) and they got their information directly from the police. More than a year prior to Sollecito’s book coming out, a Florence appeal court had totally annulled a vengeance conviction against Dr Mignini [“there is no evidence”] and the Supreme Court had endorsed the result (an example of a key fact left out).

    [2. Page 176-177] One of the reasons our hearings were so spread out was that Mignini was fighting his own, separate legal battle to fend off criminal charges of prosecutorial misconduct. He and a police inspector working on the Monster of Florence case stood accused of intimidating public officials and journalists by opening legal proceedings against them and tapping their phones without proper justification.

    To Mignini, the case smacked of professional jealousy because the prosecutors in Florence resented his intrusion on a murder mystery they had struggled for so long to resolve. But Mignini’s behavior had already attracted international condemnation, never more so than when he threw the journalist most indefatigably devoted to following the Monster case, Mario Spezi, into jail for three weeks.

    Spezi had ridiculed Mignini’s theories about Francesco Narducci, the Perugian doctor whom Mignini suspected of being part of a satanic cult connected to the killings. In response, Mignini accused Spezi himself of involvement in Narducci’s murder - even though the death had been ruled a suicide. It was a staggering power play, and the international Committee to Protect Journalists was soon on the case. Spezi was not initially told why he was being arrested and, like me, was denied access to a lawyer for days. Even Mignini, though, could not press murder charges without proving first that a murder had taken place, and Spezi was eventually let out.

    I firmly believe that our trial was, among other things, a grand diversion intended to keep media attention away from Mignini’s legal battle in Florence and to provide him with the high-profile court victory he desperately needed to restore his reputation. Already in the pretrial hearing, Mignini had shown signs of hypersensitivity about his critics, in particular the handful of English-speaking investigators and reporters who had questioned his case against us early on. He issued an explicit warning that anyone hoping he would back off the Meredith Kercher case or resign should think again. “Nobody has left their post, and nobody will,”Â he said. “Let that be clear, in Perugia and beyond.”Â

    Just as he had in the Monster of Florence case, Mignini used every tool at his disposal against his critics and adversaries. He spied on my family and tapped their phones. He went after Amanda not just for murder, but also for defaming Patrick Lumumba - whom she had implicated under duress and at the police’s suggestion. He opened or threatened about a dozen other legal cases against his critics in Italy and beyond. He charged Amanda’s parents with criminal defamation for repeating the accusation that she had been hit in the head while in custody. And he sued or threatened to sue an assortment of reporters, writers, and newspapers, either because they said negative things about him or the police directly or because they quoted others saying such things.

    Mignini’s volley of lawsuits had an unmistakable chilling effect, especially on the Italian press, and played a clear role in tipping public opinion against us. We weren’t the only ones mounting the fight of our lives in court, and it was difficult not to interpret this legal onslaught as part of Mignini’s campaign to beat back the abuse-of-office charges. His approach seemed singularly vindictive. Not only did we have to sit in prison while the murder trial dragged on; it seemed he wanted to throw our friends and supporters - anyone who voiced a sympathetic opinion in public - into prison right alongside us.


    6. Example Claim 3

    Our brief response to this for now is that this was long ago revealed to be a hoax (an example of a key fact left out). Neither the police nor the prosecution were in any way involved. A fake positive for HIV turned up, Knox was warned not to be concerned, and she was soon told that a new test showed her fine. Her list of recent sex partners was her idea, and its leaking to the media was demonstrably a family and defense-team thing (an example of a key fact left out).

    [Page 101-102] The prosecution’s tactics grew nastier, never more so than when Amanda was taken to the prison infirmary the day after Patrick’s release and told she had tested positive for HIV.

    She was devastated. She wrote in her diary, “I don’t want to die. I want to get married and have children. I want to create something good. I want to get old. I want my time. I want my life. Why why why? I can’t believe this.”Â

    For a week she was tormented with the idea that she would contract AIDS in prison, serving time for a crime she did not commit. But the whole thing was a ruse, designed to frighten her into admitting how many men she had slept with. When asked, she provided a list of her sexual partners, and the contraceptive method she had used with each. Only then was she told the test was a false positive

    To the prosecution, the information must have been a disappointment: seven partners in all, of whom four were boyfriends she had never made a secret of, and three she qualified as one-night stands. Rudy Guede was not on the list, and neither was anyone else who might prove useful in the case. She hadn’t been handing herself around like candy at Le Chic, as Patrick now alleged. She’d fooled around with two guys soon after arriving in Italy, neither of them at Patrick’s bar, and then she had been with me. Okay, so she was no Mother Teresa. But neither was she the whore of Babylon.

    To compound the nastiness, the list was eventually leaked to the media, with the erroneous twist that the seven partners on the list were just the men she’d had since arriving in Perugia. Whatever one thought of Amanda and her free-spirited American attitude toward sex, this callous disregard for her privacy and her feelings was the behavior of savages.


    7. Looking Forward

    More posts to come.  We are going to open the floodgates on our own analysis of the book if the court on thursday takes a significant step forward.

    Note that Sollecito has to contend with negative Italian public opinion as his claims bitterly disparaging to Italy itself (see the post below) are finally repeated in translation by the media and so become better known - at a disastrous time for him and Knox, two months before Cassation decides on their failed appeal.

    In late 2012 after the book came out the TV crime show Porta a Porta gave Dr Sollecito quite a roasting on the first claim here and anger continued for some days more. He and Sollecito’s sister may be in court but no surprises if they are not. Knox could also react - the second and third claims above also appear in her book.


    Friday, January 16, 2015

    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #2: False Accusations From The First Few Pages

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Suggested cover for a followup book due to multiple attempted malicious framings in first books

    Examples: 20 False Claims In Seven Pages

    We count several hundred malicious claims throughout that can easily be proved wrong. These twenty examples all appear in the book’s preface, which is only seven pages long.

    Such claims continue throughout the book at approximately the same rate. Many sharp eyes here set about identifying them and are credited in the TJMK Liewatch page for Sollecito which will be switched on again when the secrecy requirement described in Part #12 below is relaxed by the court next week. 

    1. That Italian justice authorities took the easy way out

    This is the story of two ordinary people who stumbled upon an extraordinary circumstance, the brutal murder of a British student in Italy. Neither Amanda Knox nor I had anything to do with the crime, but we came perilously close to spending the rest of our lives in prison because the authorities found it easier, and more convenient, to take advantage of our youth and inexperience than to mount a proper investigation.  It’s that simple. And that absurd.

    No advantage was taken of them. The two stood themselves out very sharply from all the others of similar age, and of similar inexperience (whatever that means). They did and said dozens of things in the early days that set them sharply apart.

    They were questioned quite fairly, the Italian media was not especially hard, Dr Mignini never ever leaked, and they had lawyers and family handy at every turn after they were arrested. They each gave the authorities less than zero help - they tried to lead them off on wild goose chases, for example the false claim AK made against Patrick and dozens of other false claims, and apparently tried to finger yet another north African, Hicham Khiri, in a conversation they clearly knew was being recorded.

    A “proper” investigation was indeed done. Simply read through all the posts on the trial here in the first half of 2009, and the prosecutor’s excellent summations, and you will see what a smooth comprehensive job was done. And the Supreme Court concluded that THREE had to have been involved, from the recreation of the attack and all the wounds on Meredith’s body. Subsequent to Patrick, AK and RS and their lawyers never came within light-years of throwing real suspicion on anyone else.

    2. That the preventive custody was very harsh

    On November 1, 2007, Amanda and I were carefree students at the beginning of a cross-cultural love affair in a beautiful Umbrian hill town. Within days, we were thrown into solitary confinement in a filthy prison, without access to lawyers or loved ones, accused of acts so heinous and disturbing we may never be able to banish them from our thoughts, or our nightmares.

    Raffaele was sent to preventative prison on Tuesday November 6. Capanne Prison was almost brand-new then, and far from crowded. Cells contain TVs and private bathrooms.

    All questioning had been stopped early on 6 November until Sollecito could have a lawyer present. He himself wrote to his father in his “prison diary” on November 7:  “I may see you tomorrow, at least that is what I was told by Tiziano [Tiziano Tedeschi, his lawyer at the time], who I saw today and who defended me before the judge.”

    Mr Tedeschi made no complaint about any delay in the first meeting with his new client. In Italy, a judge must determine within 48 hours whether to hold or release detained suspects. Judge Matteini did so meticulously with Tedeschi present and refused Sollecito’s release.

    3. That the prosecution and Italian media demonized the pair

    In the newspapers and on the nightly news, we were turned into monsters, grotesque distortions of our true selves. It did not matter how thin the evidence was, or how quickly it became apparent that the culprit was someone else entirely. Our guilt was presumed, and everything the prosecution did and fed to the media stemmed from that false premise.

    In the real world, the prosecution fed nothing at all secretly to the media and publicly very little, none of it self-servingly biased. Italian reporting was sporadic and very mild compared to anything one can see said daily about possible perps in the US and UK newspapers and on US TV. Besides, any coverage, which was in part deliberate in the situation as dozens of students were fleeing Perugia, had no influence on anything, neither on the investigation nor the trial.

    The Italian system is set up so media can have less influence than almost any other media on any other justice system in the world. The Micheli and Massei sentencing reports show the judges were not unduly influenced even by the lawyers right in front of them, let alone by mild media reports 1 or 2 years before that.

    4. That four years were wasted showing where the prosecution went wrong.

    By the time we had dismantled the case and demonstrated its breathtaking absurdity [in the bent and annulled Hellmann appeal] we had spent four of what should have been the best years of our lives behind bars.

    “We” meaning the defense lawyers did very little in the bent and annulled Hellmann appeal that they hadn’t flailed uselessly against in the trial. Except of course shopping for an inexperienced and pliable business judge, and for DNA consultants who they could then spoon-feed.

    The list of lies by omission is extremely long. Much of the hard evidence they simply kept well away from, both in the trial and annulled appeal. Such as the extensive evidence in the corridor and bathroom and Filomena’s room, which were all considered parts of the crime scene.

    On the other hand, RS’s claim could well apply to what Dr Galati and Cassation did for the Hellman sentencing report. Dismantled the appeal verdict, and demonstrated its breathtaking absurdity.

    5. That Knox was made a target because timid Italy was scared of her.

    Amanda and I certainly made our share of mistakes. At the beginning we were too trusting, spoke too frivolously and too soon, and remained oblivious to the danger we were courting even after the judicial noose began to tighten. Amanda behaved in ways that were culturally baffling to many Italians and attracted a torrent of gossip and criticism.

    An inaccurate and xenophobic remark originated by the American Nina Burleigh, who was having severe culture shock of her own and surrounded only by other foreigners with similar mindsets.

    What EXACTLY was so baffling about Knox to the very hip Italians? That Knox was pushy, obnoxious, humorless, rather lazy, rather grubby, and not especially funny or pretty or bright?  That she slept with a drug wholesaler up to the day of her arrest and cost him a stint in prison? That she put off Patrick, Meredith, her other flatmates, the boys downstairs, the customers in the bar, and just about everybody else except for the distasteful druggie loner Sollecito?

    Read this post by the Italian-American Nicki in Milan. To quote from it “As many of us were expecting, Amanda’s testimony has backfired. She came across not as confident but arrogant, not as sweet but testy, not as true but a fake who has memorized a script, an actress who is playing a part but not well enough to fool the public….. Amanda Knox is not on trial because she is American and therefore too “emancipated”....Italians don’t much like Amanda primarily because they perceive her as a manipulative liar, who is suspected of having committed a heinous crime for which there is a whole stack of evidence.”

    6. That Knox and Meredith were really great, great friends.

    We were young and naive, unthinking and a little reckless. Of that much we were guilty.  But what we did not do””and could not have done, as the evidence clearly showed””was murder Meredith Kercher.

    Meredith was Amanda’s friend, a fellow English speaker in the house they shared with two Italian women just outside Perugia’s ancient city walls. She was twenty-one years old, intelligent, and beautiful. She and Amanda knew each other for a little over three weeks, long enough to feel their way into their new surroundings and appreciate each other’s interests and temperaments. I never heard about a single tense moment between them.

    Plenty of other people did know of tensions. Meredith’s family and friends all knew Meredith was finding the noisy dirty lazy loud unfocused Knox and her one-night-stands hard to take.  Her other flatmates found her hard to take. Her employer Patrick found her hard to take. His customers in the bar found her hard to take.  The Lifetime movie got this strident angle of Knox pretty straight.

    Remember, Meredith had enrolled for a full academic load at the main university. Knox in sharp contrast took only one undemanding language course - which anyone could walk into - requiring maybe 10 hours of study a week.  They increasingly did less together. In fact after several weeks, nobody was lining up to have anything to do with Amanda Knox.

    Seemingly unable to reverse herself, Knox was headed to being among the least popular of students (or part-time students) in Perugia.  It should be recalled that the callous remarks by Amanda Knox about the death of her so-called friend Meredith included “Shit happens”, “She fucking bled to death”, and “‘I want to get on with the rest of my life”.

    7. That an intruder knew about the rent money and so murder ensued.

    Meredith, of course, suffered infinitely worse luck than we did: she came home, alone, on an ordinary Thursday night and had her throat slit by an intruder hoping to steal the household rent money.

    There is zero evidence that this was the case. Knox herself ended up with a similar amount of cash that she has never been able to explain. There is zero possibility that Guede would know that any money was lying around - or not lying around, as it was concealed in Meredith’s drawer.

    And take a look at the many images of the brightly lit house at night around 8:00 pm. There are several dozen other houses behind it in the dark which any smart burglar would have chosen first and entered hours later.  In 2008 two real break-ins occurred at the house - both were in the dark behind the house, which is by far the easiest place to break in.

    So much for the spurious lone-wolf theory, which Judge Micheli first ruled out even before trial.

    8. That the media got hysterical and portrayed heartless killers.

    But the roles could easily have been reversed. If Meredith’s Italian boyfriend had not gone away for the weekend and if Amanda had not started sleeping over at my house, she””not Meredith””might have been the one found in a pool of blood on her bedroom floor. That reality was quickly lost amid the hysteria of the media coverage. But it continued to hover over both of us””Amanda especially””as we sank into the legal quagmire and struggled in vain to overcome the public image of us as heartless killers.

    There was zero media hysteria. This silly claim was addressed above. Watch the Porta a Porta YouTubes and dozens of other Italian reports and try to find ONE that is not fair and cautious and mature.

    How precisely did the two struggle in vain to overcome their public image? By coming up repeatedly with stories which didnt even tally with others of their own, let alone with one another’s? They never between them made even one helpful statement which actually helped the police.  And even their respective parents strongly suspected or knew of their guilt and were all caught incriminatingly on tape.

    9. That Rudy Guede did it alone; ignore vast evidence that proves not.

    This should not have been a complicated case. The intruder was quickly identified as Rudy Guede, an African immigrant living in Perugia with a history of break-ins and petty crimes. His DNA was found all over Meredith’s room, and footprints made in her blood were found to match his shoes. Everything at the crime scene pointed to a lone assailant, and a single weapon. Guede repeatedly broke into houses by throwing a rock through a window, as happened here, and he had been caught by the authorities in the past with a knife similar to the one that inflicted Meredith’s fatal wounds.

    This is laughable. The room itself could not be checked for DNA as the choice was to fingerprint-check it instead. Sollecito’s footprint on the bathroom mat is a smoking gun all by itself. Crack national investigators demonstrated in numerous ways that the attack involved multiple assailants and this was endorsed by the Supreme Court.

    Sollecito’s own lawyers never forcefully argued this. They produced two non-credible witnesses in the appeal trial (Alessi and Aviello) to actually prove that Guede had some other accomplices or that several others did it. Amanda Knox if anything diverted attention AWAY from Guede as he did in turn from her. He wasn’t quickly identified precisely because Knox had extremely credibly again and again on 5-6 Nov fingered Patrick.

    There is no proof Guede intruded anywhere. The trial court concluded Knox invited him in. Guede had zero proven history of break-ins or petty crimes or drug-dealing, and late in 2008 at his trial Judge Micheli became angry at such claims. Guede had no prior criminal record at all. He had only been back in Perugia for a few weeks, after an extended stay up north.  His DNA was not found “all over” Meredith’s room. A major surprise, in fact, was how few traces of him were found.

    The recreation of the crime scene and the autopsy both pointed AWAY FROM a lone assailant, not toward.  From Meredith’s wounds, it was quite evident that two and perhaps three knives had been used, and not a single weapon. What lone intruder carries or uses two or three knives?  And footprints in blood outside the door matched the feet of both RS and AK. This is why the Supreme Court confirmed Guede’s guilt only “in concorso” (with others).

    10. That the cops could have caught Guede fast, despite Knox’s frame

    Guede did not call the police, as Amanda and I did, or volunteer information, or agree to hours of questioning whenever asked. Rather, he fled to Germany as soon as the investigation began and stayed there until his arrest two and a half weeks later.

    Guede’s apprehension and eventual conviction on murder charges should have been the end of the story. But by the time Guede was identified, the police and the public prosecutor’s office had convinced themselves that the murder was, incredibly, the result of a sexual orgy gone wrong, in which Amanda and I had played leading roles. Their speculations ignited a media firestorm, inspiring sensationalist headlines across the world about the evil lurking behind our seemingly innocent faces.

    The authorities had no shred of evidence to substantiate this story line, only erroneous suppositions and wild imaginings. We had an alibi for the most likely time of death, and none of the initial forensic evidence tied us to the scene of the crime. Nothing in our backgrounds gave any hint of a propensity for violence or criminality. We were both accomplished, hardworking students known to our friends and families for our gentleness and even tempers.

    Four more untrue claims. All three were convicted of a murder with a sex-crime element, and nobody was wrongly “convinced”. Which alibi is Sollecito talking about now? He himself admits in chapter 1 (Love and Death) that they had no “real alibi”. They still have no alibis at all for the second half of the evening, neither of them, when Meredith’s murder indisputably occurred.

    Extensive forensic evidence within days tied them both to the scene. Not a single element of it has been discredited in the eyes of the Massei trial and Nencini appeal court. Not even one. Nothing was proven falsified, no item at all.

    Neither of their backgrounds was squeaky clean. Both had long been into illegal drugs, the loner Sollecito had to be watched by his father and teachers, the increasingly disliked Knox had a history of doing and saying crass off-putting things. Both were lagging behind their brighter peers in their studies and Knox was in reality taking a year off.

    11. That the prosecution fed the media a huge number of false claims.

    Yet the authorities stuck to their guns. They fed the media a steady diet of sensationalist stories of how Amanda, the promiscuous American she-devil, and I, her sex-and-drug-addled Italian helpmeet, had tried without success to drag Meredith into our depravity and punished her by plunging an outsize kitchen knife into her neck.

    Complete fiction. Again, in the real world, as the media reporters all confirm, the prosecution fed nothing at all secretly to the media, and publicly very little, none of it self-servingly biased.  Italian reporting was sporadic and very mild compared to anything one can see daily on possible perps in the US and UK newspapers and on US TV crime shows. There is zero sign this mild coverage mattered to the courts. As the media reporters all confirm, they were fed next to nothing by the police or prosecution on the case,

    But whereas Mr Mignini famously never leaks, the defenses are widely claimed to have leaked throughout like sieves. So did Sollecito’s own family - they leaked an evidence video to Telenorba TV, for which they were considered for trial. Even we at TJMK and PMF received several offers of juicy leaks. Here is one example of where the Knox forces leaked - wrongly in fact - and then nastily slimed the prosecution and defenseless prison staff.

    12. That the authorities had lots and lots and lots of scenarios.

    It might have been funny if the consequences had not been so devastating. Listening to the tortured language of the prosecution””“one can hypothesize that . . . ,” “it is possible that . . . ,” “one can imagine that . . . ,” “this scenario is not incompatible with . . .”””it became clear that the authorities, like the media, were treating our case with the bizarre levity of an after-dinner game of Clue, or an Agatha Christie mystery. Everyone, even the judges in their black robes, had theories they were itching to air.

    Have Sollecito and Gumbel ever before been in any other court in Italy or the UK or the US?  Every judge and/or jury seeks to zero in on a viable scenario on lines not unlike this. That is the whole POINT of having courts - to weight the probabilities in what happened in the crime.  The only difference in Italy is that the judges have to think their verdict through for weeks, and then write it all out, and then see it scrutinized by a higher court. Hardly a requirement to be sneered at.

    Gumbel and Sollecito should have studied how US and UK juries arrive at their own scenarios. Very few US and UK lawyers think they do a better job. Ask those who watched the OJ Simpson and Casey Anthony trials and bitterly criticised the outcomes of those. And Italy has a vastly lower rate of false imprisonment than the US does, less than 1/6 of the US rate.

    13. That Italy is a medieval country with a primitive justice system.

    It could have been Colonel Mustard in the drawing room with the revolver; instead it was Amanda and Raffaele in the bedroom with the kitchen knife. How was it conceivable that a democratic country known for its style and beauty and effortless charm””the Italy of the Renaissance and la dolce vita””could allow two young people to be catapulted to international notoriety and convicted of a horrific crime on the basis of nothing at all?

    This is not remotely what happened. There was very far from nothing at all. Convictions in the US and UK regularly result based on evidence 1/10 or 1/100 of that here - sometimes from one single evidence point. Any one or several of maybe 100 evidence points here could have convicted them in a US or UK court.

    Italy gives defendants every possible break, and the justice system has become seriously loaded against victims and their families. Read here and here.

    14. That the prosecutors office and media were in a grim embrace.

    The answer has something to do with the grim embrace that developed between the prosecutor’s office and the sensationalist media. Like addicts constantly looking for the next fix, each fed the other’s insatiable appetite for titillation and attention. The casual cruelty of “Foxy Knoxy” and her Italian lover became too good a story line to abandon, even when it became apparent it was overheated and unsustainable. Our suffering was the price to be paid for the world’s continuing entertainment.

    WHAT grim embrace? WHAT addicts? WHAT fix? WHAT insatiable appetite? WHAT titillation and attention? This is clearly defamatory if it can’t be proven, and we can turn up no evidence that any of it is true. It has to be one of the most foolish lies in the entire book, it is so easy to disprove. These who are being accused of crimes here are career police and prosecutors secure in their jobs, and perhaps some in the media, and none have the slightest gain to make from convictions arrived at through a hoax.

    15. That in the justice system speculation and hearsay run rampant

    The meandering complexities of the Italian legal system, where speculation and hearsay are allowed to run rampant and time invariably slows to a maddening trickle, did little to help our cause.

    Total mischaracterization. First note that by comparison with any country in the world THERE IS NOT MUCH CRIME IN ITALY.  There is some minor corruption and still some minor mafia action, but thefts and burglaries and assaults are few and murders even fewer. The main crime if you can call it such is citizens not lining up to pay taxes.  Italy’s murder rate is 1/6 that of the United States and its prison system size is 1/30 that of the United States, so where IS all this crime about which the claimed speculation and hearsay are running rampant?

    The legal process would have been fully over by the end of 2009 if (1) there was not the entitlement to two automatic appeals; in UK and US terms there was very little to appeal about;  and (2) the Hellmann appeal court had not been fixed to produce a corrupt outcome, as the displaced judge Sergio Matteini Chiari and Cassation and the Council of Magistrates have all made plain.

    And compared to American police and prosecutors, their Italian counterparts are famously taciturn under their unusually firm rules. There is media interest, for sure, as there should be when there are crimes, but that also is comparatively restrained. Watch the various Porta a Porta shows on YouTube and you will see how sedate crime discussion tends to be.

    The Constitution and the judicial code set out to achieve the exact opposite of speculation and hearsay affecting justice, and they do so.  Creating this restraint is a primary reason for the judges’ sentencing reports, and for all the magistrates’ checks of investigations along the way.

    This whole series of dishonest claims about the the Italian system in the preface of the book and a later chapter have clearly not been read through or okayed by even one Italian lawyer. They would all know it is wrong.

    16. That in Italy proof beyond a reasonable doubt scarcely exists

    For reasons deeply embedded in the country’s history, the concept of proof beyond a reasonable doubt scarcely exists in Italy, and the very notion of undisputed fact is viewed with suspicion, if not outright aversion.

    So Gumbel and Sollecito are historians and legal experts now? It would be nice, wouldn’t it, if either were able to explain the remark. This may be an ignorant swipe at the Napoleonic Code on which the law of a lot of continental Europe is based. Ignored is that Italy carried out its own reforms to the Code in 1990 and more subsequently. Much of that reform, it should be pointed out, was procedural or structural rather than substantive law.

    There are two things wrong with “..the concept of reasonable doubt scarcely exists in Italy.”

      1. It is factually wrong. Italian jurists, the courts, and so on, are well acquainted with the concept as it has been a fundamental aspect of criminal proceedings in Italy as elsewhere for many decades if not centuries.

      2. It suggests that Italians are not intelligent enough to understand the concept anyway. That of course is an insult to Italians.  Actually they are no less intelligent than the rest of us elsewhere who strive to understand it.

    Until the 1990 Reforms the relationship between criminal and civil proceedings in Italy were governed by the principles of unity of jurisdiction and the prevailing status of criminal proceedings. Hence, if the facts were the same then criminal proceedings (to punish the guilty) and civil proceedings (to render liable the guilty for damages) were heard at the same time and still sometimes are, as in the Meredith Kercher case.

    What has changed (relevant to the above quote) is that civil cases can be and are more likely to be heard independently from the related criminal cases and, where not, the standard of proof in civil cases (the preponderance of evidence or, as we usually refer to it, the balance of probabilities) is to be applied to the civil case, and the civil case only, rather than be confused with or overriden by the criminal standard of proof (beyond reasonable doubt).

    Not an easy task, admittedly, to apply different standards to different tasks, based on the same facts, in the same proceedings, but Italian judges are trained to do this because that is their system. No judge would EVER confuse “beyond reasonable doubt” with “the balance of probabilities” when the issue at stake is depriving an individual of his freedom.

    17. That the Italian judiciary has vast, unfettered powers

    Few in Italian society wield as much unfettered power as the robed members of the judiciary, whose independence makes them answerable to nobody but themselves.

    Radically the opposite of the truth. The paranoid claim reads like it came from ex PM Berlusconi fearful of his own conviction or one of his parliamentary lackeys such as Girlanda.

    The checks and balances on judges in the Italian system are enormous, perhaps the toughest checks and balances in the world. Read here and here about them.

    All of the best judges in the world are independent and they all follow a demanding career path, not elected (as ex-Judge Heavey was) under zero criteria, or appointed under the political sway of politicians. We wonder if Gumbel and Sollecito have ever heard of the US Supreme Court? Do those judges answer to anybody? No? How unfettered. 

    18. That the courts are the most reviled institution in Italy.

    Many Italians retain a healthy skepticism about the reliability of their procedures and rulings. The courts””tainted by politics, clubbishness, pomposity, and excruciating delays””are the most reviled institution in the country.


    As our Sollecito Book pages make clear again and again and again, the Italian system is remarkably NOT tainted by politics, as even the most surperficial watcher of the trials of ex Prime Minister Sylvio Berlusconi would know.

    And on the issue of popularity we have previously posted this and this and also this.

    Our Italian poster Machiavelli (Yummi), who posted our deep analysis of the appeal to the Supreme Court by Dr Galati, has provided these hard facts:

    For comparison, in 2011 the percentage of Italians who declared they trust the justice system “a lot” or “enough” was 53.3%. By comparison, the percentage of Italians who declared they trust the government “a lot” or “enough”  were 14.7%, and those who trust the parliament were only 15%.

    In 2012, the percentage of Italians who trust the parliament is now only 9.5%, and those who trust the Mario Monti administration are only 21.1%.

    Over the eight years from 2004 to 2012 the percentage of Italians who trust the justice system was always bigger than those who trust parliament or government by at least ten points, and in some years we can see a spread of 20, 30, even 39 percentage points achieved by the judiciary over the parliament and government.

    However, some cases of corruption (such as our Hellmann-Zanetti case, but also several others indicated by the Rapporto Italia 2012) do hamper trust.

    The most trusted institutions in Italy above all are the Carabinieri (74% of Italians trust them) and the Polizia di Stato (71%).

    Which means the most trusted institutions are precisely those law enforcement instruments which are deployed to enforce the orders of prosecutors.

    19. That prosecutors can spin their cases into any shape they please.

    Because the Italian legal system is almost completely blind to precedent and relies on a tangle of impenetrable codes and procedures, prosecutors and judges have almost boundless freedom to spin their cases into any shape they please and create legal justifications on the fly. Often, they are more interested in constructing compelling narratives than in building up the evidence piece by piece, a task considered too prosaic and painstaking to be really interesting.

    Whoever wrote this either wasnt an Italian or a lawyer, and either way didnt have much of a clue. The entire Italian system under the post WWII constitution was designed to PREVENT what Sollecito & Gumbel claim it allows here.

    There are checks and balances and reviews every step of the way. Magistrates (initially Matteini here) determine what a prosecutor may do in developing and presenting a case. Parties may appeal to the Supreme Court AT ANY TIME as Knox’s lawyers did over her second written confession - which she herself had demanded to make in front of Dr Mignini after he finished warning her of her rights.

    Hard for Sollecito & Gumbel to believe, perhaps, but the defense is actually present in the same courtroom. They can raise points of order at any time. So can the defendants themselves, at any time, something maybe unique in the world.

    And judges actually have minds of their own. And then there are the unique written sentencing reports, and the two automatic appeals if any parties want to pursue them.

    Sollecito & Gumbel should have read the 2012 Galati appeal more closely. The Prosecution’s Appeal To The Supreme Court is available in English here.  Precedent has a section to itself - “The non-observance of the principles of law dictated by the Cassation Court in the matter of circumstantial cases (Article 606(b)) in relation to Article 192 paragraph 2 Criminal Procedure Code.”

    Well, that’s precedent, via the Court of Cassation no less! How surprising from Gumbel/Sollecito that they should make that claim about ignoring precedent when in fact there it is, going right to the heart of the flawed Hellmann/Zanetti judgement on circumstantial evidence!  What else is a Code but in effect a codification, a gathering together, a rationalisation, of best law - and precedent? 

    There is an absurd irony here, were they aware of it. Perhaps they are. Surely it is Hellmann and Zanetti who have displayed “a boundless freedom” in spinning the case “into any shape they please”, and who have “created legal justifications on the fly”?  As for prosecutors doing this, at least Dr Mignini followed the evidence, and American readers may recall the infamous Jim Garrison, the DA hero of Oliver Stone’s movie “JFK” but who in reality, unlike Dr Mignini, was a total and utter crackpot.

    And what issue exploded the Porta a Porta TV show in Italy in September 2012? It was Sollecito’s false claim that the prosecution had secretly tried to offer him a deal if he would roll over on Knox.  NOBODY including his own father and his own lawyers confirmed him. Evidence against both was overwhelming. Nobody needed such a deal, and Italian prosecutors are highly rules-bound against ever offering such deals.

    Sollecito was in effect accusing Dr Mignini of a felony with this much-repeated false claim in his book. (In her book Knox also accused Dr Mignini of a felony.)

    20. That the prosecutors and judges in Italy are far too close.

    Prosecutors and judges are not independent of each other, as they are in Britain or the United States, but belong to the same professional body of magistrates. So a certain coziness between them is inevitable, especially in smaller jurisdictions like Perugia.

    Yes, prosecutors and judges in Italy belong to the same professional body of magistrates. But then so does the defense lawyer Ms Bongiorno. The claim that there is no independence between prosecutors and judges in Italy, in fact a coziness between them, is a bit rich.

    Consider, say, the UK. It is true cases are prosecuted by the Crown Prosecution Service, a government body, but in serious cases the CPS will employ barristers from the Inns of Court. There is scarcely a judge in the UK, even up to the highest level, who was not and who is not still a member of one of the Inns of Court from whence barristers, for the prosecution or for the defence, ply their trade.

    You can’t walk past an Inn without seeing the names of judges on the roll call on the plaques outside. A judge is still a barrister, just fulfilling a different function, although, of course, now paid by the State.  The old school boy tie? Corruption? No, the fulfilling of different roles by members of the same body is called professionalism. 

    Judges and lawyers all belong to the American Bar Association in the US and attend the same conferences. No sign that this lack of “independence” ever affects trials.  This claimed excess of coziness is often ranted about online by the Knoxophile David Anderson who lives near Perugia. Nobody who pays him any attention can get where he derives this from. Maybe he heard it from Hellman?

    Perugia prosecutors and magistrates are all known to do a fine job, and the national Olympics & earthquake relief cases involving powerful Rome politicians were assigned for competent handling to where? To Perugia… Defense lawyer Ghirga and Prosecutor Mignini have the reputation of being good friends. And Mignini and Massei would both draw their salaries from the State. But so what? Do not judges and DAs in the the USA do likewise? Are Gumbel and Sollecito impugning the professionalism of the counterparts of Mignini and Massei all over the world? It sure reads like it.


    The Sollecito Trial For “Honor Bound” #1: History Of How This Ill-Fated Saga Began

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    The “supertanker” the PR forces worked hard to turn has become a Titanic for them now

    1. The Latest Legal Developments

    A new phase of the Florence trial of Raffaele Sollecito and Andrew Gumbel is scheduled to start on Thursday of next week.

    Why is this the iceberg in the Titanic’s path? Because Sollecito and later Knox made numerous demonstrably false and damaging claims that so many others then made, most usually worse.

    See Sollecito go down here, or withdraw his claims, for lack of any proof, and the legal liabilities of all those others stretch to the horizon and beyond.

    This trial puts Knox herself and her parents with her wild book and their wild claims at more risk. 

    For reasons explained below, the investigation of the myriad claims by an Italian, beamed only at Americans, of official crimes and alternative “facts” couched in a jeering, sneering anti-Italy tone was taken behind the scenes by the Florence prosecution early in 2013.

    The charges and target defamatory passages selected out of numerous passages falsely describing facts of the case and falsely accusing officials of crimes have not been formally reported even in Italy yet, except for a website update last October by the indefatigable journalist Andrea Vogt.

    2. Chronology 2009-2011: The Trial And Appeal

    In 2011 what is widely known in Italy to have been a bent Hellmann appeal court ran a cartoonish and illegal retrial of Sollecito and AK.

    This illegal retrial, mostly annulled by the Supreme Court in March 2013, was lacking a few things. Such as most evidence, most witnesses, and all of the 2009 prosecution case and the compelling prosecution summations at the end. An illegal DNA consultancy which should never have occurred at appeal is also believed to have been bent.

    3. Various Flashing Warning Lights

    On 3 October 2011 Judge Hellmann told RS and AK they were free to go, despite the fact that no legal process for murder and some other crimes is considered final in Italy until no party pursues any further appeals or the Supreme Court signs off. Most still accused of serious crimes (as in the UK and US) remain locked up. Hellmann, pathetically trying to justify this fiasco ever since, was firmly edged out and still the target of a possible charge.

    Other flashing warnings should have made Sollecito’s family and legal team and book writers very wary. They included the immediate strong warning of a tough prosecution appeal to the Supreme Court. They also included the pending calunnia trials of Knox and her parents, the pending trial of the Sollecitos for attempting to use politics to subvert justice, the pending trials of Spezi, Aviello, and Sforza, and so on. 

    A major flashing warning was right there in Italian law. Trials are meant to be conducted in the courtroom and attempts to poison public opinion are illegal. They can be illegal in the US and UK too but, for historical reasons to do with the mafias and crooked politicians, Italian laws in this area are among the world’s toughest. So mid-process, normally no books are ever published

    4. Chronology 2012-2013 The United States Track

    Knox quickly headed back to the US West Coast and Sollecito soon came after her there.

    After three-plus years of Sollecito and his camp being very iffy about Knox he suddenly - to his father’s open frustration - could not get enough of her.

    Very quickly Sollecito found a book agent, Sharlene Martin,  who lives just a couple of miles from the Mellases and Knoxes, and she lined up a shadow writer, Andrew Gumbel, who lives in LA and had been based in Italy in the 1990s.

    Both Sharlene Martin and Andrew Gumbel soon revealed that their “knowledge” of the case was paper-thin and dangerously biased.

    Sollecito’s Italian lawyers seemingly did not have a clue what was going on on this book front - lately an angry Giulia Bongiorno made that plain enough.

    Sollecito’s father and sister did have growing concerns (among much fallout in Italy of their own such as Vanessa losing a plum Carabinieri job) and in March they hopped on a flight to Seattle to try to ditch Knox and presumably the book and drag Sollecito home.

    Even Knox at times seemed to want the clingy nuisance gone, and she produced a claimed new love-interest to help to keep him at bay.

    Throughout 2012 the hubris of the Knox camp within which Sollecito had embedded himself was immense. David Marriott and Bruce Fischer both posted that it was their efforts that had got the two released, making no mention of a court the defenses had bent.

    On 18 September Honor Bound hit the shelves. If Sharlene Martin or Andrew Gumbel or Simon & Schuster had done any due diligence on the book, such as reading court documents, or even run it in final draft in Italian past Sollecito’s lawyers in Italy, that due diligence sure did not show. (A legal case for the Sollecito family to pursue?)

    Seemingly irresponsible or incompetent and not caring who in Italy they hurt, Sharlene Martin and Andrew Gumbel then assisted Sollecito in a triumphalist but mostly unconvincing sweep of the US crime shows.

    The flagship interview was with Katie Couric on ABC right before the book came out. It really hurt. She had an advance copy and had done her homework. See our suggested questions and report and posts and Kermit’s great spoof here , here , here , here , and here.  The book promotion tour ended in Seattle thus..

    Late April 2013 Knox’s book came out. Strong differences with Sollecito emerged both in the books and publicly in the media as described here and here.

    Sharlene Martin later set up a panel of the useful idiots Michael Heavey and John Douglas and Steve Moore in a Congressional room for hire, an odd role for an agent of a book, which nobody of importance attended. Just as well. Truth was scarce.

    Sollecito repeatedly visited the United States (and the Caribbean) though he was provisionally a convicted felon, not least in a desperate, cynical and hurtful attempt, after the sharp rebuff by Amanda Knox, to find an American wife.

    You can read the rest of Sollecito’s US saga in the top posts here. His last visit to the United States was in late 2013.

    5. Chronology 2012-2013 The Italy Track

    The book was written and published only in English; Francesco Sollecito said no Italian publisher would touch it (surprise, surprise).

    In Italy, from our post of 27 September 2012, this media explosion is what happened next.

    In Italy Sollecito’s wildly inaccurate and hyper-aggressive book has already set himself up for two kinds of trouble

    The Gumbel and Sollecito book was released in English on 18 September 2012 and within ten days all of Italy knew that the book was a crock.

    Sollecito’s own father and own lawyer Maori have already been forced to admit the book contains serious lies. Prosecutors are considering whether there should be new charges

    Sollecito’s own father Francesco was made to concede by the host and all other guests on the popular Porta a Porta TV show last week that Sollecito lied in claiming that the prosecution had sought a deal under which Sollecito would frame Amanda.

    Such a deal would be illegal so Sollecito was falsely accusing prosecutors of a very serious crime. Francesco Sollecito backed down even more in some interviews later. One of Sollecito’s own lawyers, Luca Maori, also had to deny in frustration that the offer of any deal either way ever happened.

    Now the prosecution has announced that they are weighing whether there should be new charges lodged against Sollecito.

    Sollecito has suddenly claimed in the book, nearly five years after he said it happened, in face of vast evidence including his own writings to the contrary, that police interrogated him over 10 hours, and abused and threatened him.

    But he was demonstrably not ever interrogated over 10 hours, and he folded fast when they showed him his phone records, which contradicted his earlier alibis, and so he promptly laid the blame on Amanda.

    Prosecutors and police have all already stated that he simply lied here too, and again prosecutors are considering whether there should be new charges

    Thereafter we posted a number of times about false claims others and we ourselves identified in the book -  one of three (with Preston’s and Knox’s) probably the most defamatory ever written about any justice system or justice officials anywhere. Our next posts will pick up that thread.

    5. Italy Officially Reacts

    Finally for now, we posted on 18 February 2013 on a formal move against the book by the Florence Courts, with a Breaking News addendum that (very unusually) the prosecution and supervising magistrate had taken the investigation behind closed doors.

    That secrecy order to counter the toxic PR still persists, right up to now, and it will only be next Thursday that the results of the investigation and the charges against Sollecito and Gumbel become widely know.

    Next post: selected examples of Sollecito’s and Gumbel’s false claims.


    Sunday, January 04, 2015

    That Supposed Tsunami Of Leaks That Supposedly Hurt The Alleged Perps: Who REALLY Leaked?

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Curt Knox spins the day in court; prosecutors are forbidden to correct him or explain “their side”

    1. How The Supposed Leaks Began

    On 6 November 2007 investigators into Meredith’s death thought they had caught a big break.

    That was when Knox herself snapped and claimed to be an eyewitness to Meredith’s killing on the night. From 1:30 am to about noon on 6 November Knox repeated that claim and staged her huge fright of Patrick Lumumba again and again. She proved hard to shut up though police did gently try.

    Three times in those ten or so hours Knox herself insisted on writing her claims down, including a claim that she did go out alone. She was repeatedly warned she should have a lawyer present first but pressed on.

    False claims to have witnessed a murder are rare, but not entirely unknown - there can be fame and big bucks in it, played right.

    But in Knox’s case this did not seem to apply - she snapped explosively under no pressure except that just placed upon her by Sollecito who had claimed she made him lie and she had gone out alone from Sollecito’s on the night Meredith died.

    And she had to some extent implicated herself - she said she saw a crime she did not report.

    On 8 November supervising magistrate Claudia Matteini reviewed police and psychology reports and what Knox and Sollecito had claimed (including Sollecito’s writing that he never wanted to see Knox again).

    Judge Matteini declared them both to be bad news. She ordered them to remain locked up. Judge Ricciarelli confirmed that that was all correct.

    In coming months Knox was given repeated opportunities to clear herself, to put the evil genie back in the bottle, but she failed every time. In April 2008 Cassation ruled there was plenty of prima facie evidence, and that Judge Matteini had done the right thing.

    Knox herself inspired these events of 6 to 8 November. They are what caused the voracious UK media and relatively mild Italian media to get their paid snoops to Perugia fast.

    All of them were lobbying to get an edge. Investigators had some difficulty performing their tasks because they were getting so many calls and being crowded in the streets.

    2. Did The Police Or Prosecution Ever Leak?

    The Italian rules are quite clear. Unlike the US, cases for and against the accused must be fought only in court, and when the prosecutor or judge speaks, it will mostly be in a document that has been cleared.

    How many proven examples do you think there are of police and prosecutors slipping reporters leaks and tips and inside tracks to advance their case?

    In fact NONE. Not one.

    Among the frustrations we picked up from the excellent Italian-speaking reporters who were actually there was how under Italian rules there was so little that police and prosecutors were allowed to share.

    In the UK it is also a bit like this. But in contrast in the US there would typically be daily press conferences and prosecutors (85% of them are elected in the US) appearing on the cable-news crime shows like that of Nancy Grace.

    And Dr Mignini himself famously never leaks. The few things he ever says are on the record and they always prove accurate, low-key, and very fair. From 2007 right up to today he continues to maintain that Knox had no advance intention to kill. A softer line than some of the judges settled upon.

    3. Did The Defenses And Families Leak?

    Sure. This case must have broken all records for defense-biased leaks. Finding themselves in a vacuum of police and prosecution information and pushback, the Knox PR grew to an angry and often abusive and dishonest roar.

    The sharp-elbowed Knox-Mellas presence was constantly “available” in Perugia and Burleigh and Dempsey among others got totally taken in. Ann Bremner and Judge Heavey and Paul Ciolino became more and more shrill. Heavey wrote to the president of the Italian Republic on his official letterhead. Senator Cantwell issued many unfounded claims. 

    And through 2008 and 2009 one can spot increasing leaks from each defense team, often to try to advantage their client against the other two. We were offered some of those leaks, among others “the truth” about the autopsy and “the knife”.

    The Perugia Shock blog by PR shill Francesco Sfarzo (now on trial in Florence for making things up, and wanted by police in the US) came to be a main conduit for defense lies and misleading information, possibly some from a disgruntled cop. 

    Here is one easily proven leak from the Knox defense that was intended to hurt the police and prosecution in the case.

    But putting police so overtly on the spot was a dangerous game. More often each perp and their defense team took whacks at the other two as a Rome lawyer showed here and we showed here.  In the past few posts we have been showing how many things about Rudy Guede were made up (more to come).

    4. Making Things Up For Profit And Fame

    In 2007 and 2008 various unsavory characters surfaced in Perugia, to try to win fame and make a buck. This quote is from our post directly below.

    Christian Tramontano, who had claimed someone threatened him in his house in the dark with a knife who looked like a shot of Guede in the papers two months later, was not even called, perhaps because at a hearing in October 2008 Judge Micheli denounced him as having made things up.

    Tramontano is right now a jobless bouncer, as the mafia was found to have some involvement in his club. Judge Micheli scathingly repudiated his tale as his story did not ring true - he made no police report about it at the time.

    But worse, he looked like one of quite a few around Perugia (and later in the US) who were seeking global fame and big bucks from the media for “inside knowledge” and claimed close connections to one or other of the alleged perps.

    Despite this Tramontano’s self-serving claims are repeated as gospel by the PR shills all over the place. Those claims appear as gospel in every one of their books.

    This is from Tom Kington of the Guardian in a report posted 27 September 2008:

    The trial in Italy of Rudy Guede, one of the three suspects accused of sexually assaulting and murdering British student Meredith Kercher, was thrown into disarray yesterday when a judge stopped proceedings after learning that one of the main character witnesses had allegedly tried to sell his story to Italian television.

    Abuker Barro, known as Momi, a Somalian acquaintance of Guede, was due in court in Perugia yesterday to repeat claims made to investigators that he had seen Guede rifling through women’s handbags in clubs in Perugia and making aggressive advances to women when drunk.

    But the judge, Paolo Micheli, blocked him from completing his testimony after lawyers for Guede showed a video of Barro meeting journalists to allegedly negotiate payment of €2,000 (£1,588) for revealing his testimony on Italian television. Micheli will ask magistrates to decide whether Barro should be prosecuted for abusing his role as a witness, which could exclude his testimony.

    The incident, described by Guede’s lawyer, Walter Biscotti, as ‘an assault by the media’, follows a series of leaks to the press of evidence and even jail diaries by suspects during the investigation into the brutal slaying of Kercher, 21… [bold added]

    Few real reporters were unethical or incompetent enough to accept and report biased and unconfirmed claims like Tramontano’s or Barro’s. But you can find those false claims hyped pervasively throughout the pro-Knox books as if they were gospel.

    Among others Dempsey’s, Burleigh’s, Moore’s, Preston’s, Hendry’s, Waterbury’s, and Fischer’s books come to mind.


    Friday, January 02, 2015

    The Serial-Burglar Arm Of The Rudy Guede Hoax: Testimony 2009 In Court Provided ZERO Proof

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Maria Del Prato in the inner courtyard in Milan from which her pre-school opens off

    1. Summary Of The Hoax

    To the present day no UK or US media have ever reported properly this key segment of the 2009 trial.

    Had they ever done so the now-pervasive notion of Guede as sole perp - lone wolf - would never have gained the ground that it has. UK and US followers would understand why ALL courts said three were at the scene and the breakin was faked. 

    2. 2009 Trial Attempts To Incriminate Guede

    All the testimony about supposed break-ins by Guede was presented by the defense on 26 July and 27 July 2009.  These were two lackluster half-days for the defense. 

    3. Summary Of What It Amounted To

    That trial testimony fell far short of providing the numerous Rudy Guede demonizers with all they now claim. Here are the witnesses the defenses called. 

    1. Pre-school principal Maria Del Prato

    She came across as understanding and fair. Maria Del Prato conceded that Guede probably had a key loaned to him by one of her staff which explained why no break-in charges were lodged.  Milan police did not just let him go, they checked his record with Perugia police (he had none and police knew little or nothing of him) and knew where he was for a possible later charge.

    2. Christian Tramontano

    Tramontano was a security guard and bouncer. There is a noted tendencies in those occupations to claim acts of bravery which in many cases never happened. This looked to cops like one such instance. His one-page police report filed late said he called the cops; there is no record.

    He had claimed someone threatened him in his house in the dark with a knife who he much later said looked like a shot of Guede in the papers.He was never called to court. At a hearing in October 2008 Judge Micheli sharply denounced him in his absence as having made things up and wasted police and court time.

    3. Lawyers Matteo Palazzoli and Brocchi

    Matteo Palazzoli had first encountered the break-in scene during a Sunday night visit to his office and found his computer gone. He did not elaborate very much, and seemed glad to be gone.

    His colleague Lawyer Brocchi who had the least involvement talked the most - but he could be read as pointing a finger away from what he believed really happened for brownie points with the court.

    Here courtesy of Miriam’s translations is the key 2009 trial testimony

    Click for Post:  Guede Hoax: Translation Of Lawyers Testimony #1 On Breakin Shows No Concrete Connection To Guede

    Click for Post:  Guede Hoax: Translation Of Lawyers Testimony #2 On Breakin Shows No Concrete Connection To Guede

    4. A Major Unfairness To Guede

    We have knocked chips off Guede in the past, but how this testimony (albeit mild) opened the gates to a wave of innuendo was simply unfair. HE WAS NOT EVEN IN COURT.

    Neither he nor his lawyers were there to cross-examine the witnesses or call more witnesses of their own and the prosecution did not ask even one question. Nobody asked what legal documents may have been involved.

    This has allowed supposition to grow unchallenged, though it looked like a red-herring by the defenses at the time.

    5. What Guede’s Team Could Have Brought Out

    Note what Guede if his team had been present could have brought out:

    1. Nobody in Italy is given precautionary custody simply for possessing several items none of which were reported as stolen which conceivably could have been passed to him by another perp. When those were later proven stolen Guede was charged and he was recently sentenced in Milan to another 16 months.

    2. The French window one floor above the ground in the dark around the back would have been easy to break into on a Saturday night according to Matteo Palazzoli by simply climbing up the grill over the French window below and then using the balcony to break through.

    This is very far from the supposed scenario for Guede breaking into Filomena’s window

      (1) during Perugia’s late rush-hour on a weekday evening with a lot of cars and people still around,

      (2) under a great deal of light both from the street lights and the carpark lights above,

      (3) bypassing several other much easier entrances all of them in deep dark,

      (4) while leaving no prints and no DNA anywhere outside the window or in the room,

      (5) on a day when as far as he knew all four girls were in town (in fact three of them still were).

    3. Zero fingerprints were found in the lawyers’ offices though a great many items had been touched.

    4. What appear to be the tools of a habitual burglar were left at the scene.

    5. The burglar alarm dial-out had been disabled by someone who knew the special trick to doing that.

    6. The copier was switched on and some quantity of copy paper and several USB drives with legal data were gone.

    7. A front window had been opened and then not fully closed, seemingly to pass things through to someone waiting with a car.

    Payback or warning by a legal opponent? Such things are not unknown. Neither lawyer ever systematically reported a theft to the police. No comprehensive investigation was ever begun.

    Paolo Brocchi claimed he didnt even know that one of his cellphones was gone. Matteo Palazzoli never gave the serial number of his computer to the police. Palazzoli could only weakly testify that Guede came by - to say he was not the real thief.

    Each seemed embarrassed to be put on the stand by a flailing defense and simply anxious to move on.


    Thursday, January 01, 2015

    Guede Hoax: Translation Of Lawyers Testimony #2 On Breakin Shows No Concrete Connection To Guede

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Exit route was via one of those windows; weeks later, Guede would come knocking at that door.

    1. Overview Of The Post

    This post provides the translated testimony of lawyer Matteo Palazzoli.

    He was the owner of a Sony Vaio computer stolen from his office, which was possibly the same one that Guede was found in possession of. The previous posts on this aspect of the Guede hoax showed:

    • How similar to the back balcony route to a forced break-in of Meredith’s house was the supposed route into the Perugia lawyers’ offices.

    • How the testimony from the lawyer Paolo Briocchi on the office break-in pointed as much away from Rudy Guede as it did toward him.

    There will be an overall assessment in the next post.

    2. Testimony Of Matteo Palazzoli

    Translation of the difficult language here and in previous posts was kindly provided by Miriam. MP stands for Matteo Palazzoli, the lawyer whose office was broken into. GCM stands for Judge Giancarlo Massei. LM stands for Sollecito defense lawyer Luca Maori. MDG stands for Knox defense lawyer Maria Del Grosso.

    The witness, admonished pursuant to Article 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, reads the oath.

    General information: Matteo Palazzoli, born in Umbertide, province of Perugia, October 9 1974, resident of Perugia.

    GCM:  Please proceed.

    LM:  Lawyer Maori, for the defense of Sollecito.  What is your profession?

    MP:  Lawyer.

    LM:  Where is your legal office?

    MP:  At via del Roscetto no. 3, from Febuary 2007, if I am not mistaken.

    LM:  Together with lawyer Brocchi.

    MP:  Together with lawyer Brocchi.

    LM:  Before you, Lawyer Brocchi told us of this theft you were subject to on the night between the 13th and 14th of October 2007.

    MP:  Yes.

    LM:  Can you give us information of what happened in that situation?

    MP:  I was coming back on Sunday October 14, after being away from Perugia for 2 days, and before coming back”¦ because I live close to the office, I keep the car parked with a subscription at the parking lot of Sant’Antonio [opposite Meredith’s house], therefore I walk down via del Roscetto regularly to return home, which is in via Imbriani [further down the hill behind the law offices]. In these circumstances, I sincerely don’t reacll the reason, I stopped at the office before returning home. I think it was 6:30, 7.00 pm, of Sunday afternoon, I don’t recall the exact time.

    I went to the office, and upon entering the office, I noticed right away that something was not right, because to begin with it was October, and it was rather warm, I remember, and strangely the heaters were turned on and it was rather hot inside the office. The heaters were turned on and I immediately noticed upon turning on the light that the bathroom light was on, the restroom of the office. At that moment I didn’t notice anything else.

    Then I turned my head to the right in respect to the office entrance , and I immediately noticed my jacket, a black jacket, and a jacket of Lawyer Brocchi’s laid out on the floor. Honestly I asked myself the reason for this. I went to the French window of the office that gives out to an inner courtyard of the building, and opening the inner shutters, I noticed the glass had been broken, and that the jackets had probably been laid on the floor to cover the broken glass.

    At this point I ran to my office, that is in front of Lawyer Brocchi’s , and I immediately noticed, cautiously, that the only thing that was missing”¦ besides the binders being completely opened, and the dossiers, in there turn, also were opened with papers strewn throughout the office, I noticed that my computer was no longer there, it was not where it should have been, and that the window of my office that gives out to via del Roscetto [a window in the image at top] that at first glance appeared to be closed, in reality was open. Therefore, it had been reclosed but not completely closed, probably,  don’t know why.. whoever entered, exited through my window, not closing it completely on the way out, I honestly don’t know the reason.

    I did another round of the legal office, and I noticed again upon entering the restroom, the light on in the restroom. I went into the office of Lawyer Brocchi, and I remember that inside his office, on the desk of Lawyer Brocchi, there was a suitcase of his and on top were positioned, with a certain precision, certain objects, that I seem to remember were screwdrivers, I am frankly not sure if there were screwdrivers.

    After having gone into Lawyer Brocchi’s office I turned and went into the waiting room that is there close to the conference room, and I noticed that there was a small pile of glass, that I don’t know where it came from, because the window of the waiting room”¦ that is, no other window, if I remember correctly,  of the office was broken, in the office the only window that had been broken was the French window that gives onto the inner courtyard.

    The window of the waiting room had not been broken and yet still, there was this small pile of glass, furthermore well arranged, in the waiting room. The copying machine was turned on, I don’t know for what reason,  several reams of paper of the copying machine were missing.

    LM:  The person who entered had drunk beverages that were in the legal office?

    MP:  Yes, I remember that it was a bottle of orange drink, if I am not in error, it was left in the waiting room.

    LM:  Listen, you spoke of this computer that was taken on this occasion. Can you tell us what type of computer it was?

    MP:  It was a Vaio, the outside cover was white. The distinctive trait is that differently”¦ the distinctive feature of that computer is that it has a 16:9 screen that is high resolution.

    LM:  It’s a Sony.

    MP:  It is a Sony Vaio, that is a brand of Sony. It has a particular graphics, it is only one of a few computer that doesn’t change the type of color depending on how one roatates the screen. It was a laptop, in any case.

    LM:  This laptop did you have any news of where it was”¦ was it ever found? Was it given back to you?

    MP:  In these days I have had ways to reconstruct, in my mind, the events and the only thing I have not had a way to”¦ it happened in the succeeding days, I don’t remember exactly when, that while I was coming back from a client outside the legal office, Lawyer Brocchi called me to tell me that the police or carabinieri called from Milan saying that they had found our things, commenting: “you are always lucky, you lose everything, they steal everything, but you always recover everything”, “Okay”, I said.

    I arrived back at the office and he told me about the call in detail, that it was”¦ the police station, I sincerely don’t remember, of Milan anyway, they had called and they had found us because on the cellphone of Lawyer Brocchi”¦ which in the immediacy of the event, we had not noticed had been taken because it was an out of commission cellphone and not used by Lawyer Brocchi, thus probably he did not remember in the immediacy of the event it had been taken, he did not realize at that moment.

    Opening the cellphone, the message, if I am not in error,  “welcome Lawyer Brocchi” had appeared. Thus they were able to find us, and substantially tell Lawyer Brocchi that they had found his cellphone and my computer. Now, I said before, in these days before today’s judicial hearing I was able to gather my thoughts and furthermore I was never able to verify that the cellphone [note: he presumably means his laptop] that was found was effectively mine, because when Lawyer Brocchi and I went to the police station of Perugia to do the report, I did not have at hand, because my accountant had not given it to me, the invoice that indicated the specific model of the commuter. Thus, today I would not be able to say, if not”¦

    LM:  Anyway the computer was not given back to you?

    MP:  No.

    LM:  Before you spoke of this telephone call by the Milan police station.

    MP:  Made to Lawyer Brocchi.

    LM:  Do you know if those [investigators] attached to the police station in Milan had discovered the perpetrator of the theft?

    MP:  I sincerely don’t know, they certainly did not tell us. That is, we were told only that our things had been found, or rather, Lawyer Brocchi related to me that the police station of Milan had told him that the things we reported stolen had been found.

    LM:  Lawyer, do you know Rudy Hermann Guede?

    MP:  No.

    LM:  Have you heard of him?

    MP:  I have heard of him in relation to the renowned incident of this proceeding.

    LM: Do you know that Hermann Rudy Guede was found by the police station of Milan, a few days before these matters, with your computer?

    MP:  I don’t know that he was found with”¦ or rather, at the time that Lawyer Brocchi related to me that the police station of Milan had called him, the police station did not specify the individual that was found with the computer. I think that in that circumstance they had specified that it was found on a boy that was committing a similar crime, if I am not in error, in a kindergarten in Milan.

    LM:  Was it related to you by your assistant Doctor Morini, I believe that is his name, and by Lawyer Brocchi of an encounter that took place on October 29 with this Rudy Guede?

    MP:  Yes, it was related”¦ somehow in this case”¦when these things happen, unfortunately I am never there.

    LM:  You were not present, it was only related to you.

    MP:  It was related to me that a boy had come to the legal office, and a conversation had intervened between”¦

    LM:  What kind of boy?

    MP:  A colored boy, I gathered, had come to the legal office and held a conversation with Doctor Morini and probably even with Lawyer Brocchi, and declared himself absolutely extraneous to the matter and declared that he bought my computer legally , if I am not in error at the train station of Milan, I sincerely don’t know. This was related to me by my colleagues.

    LM:  In any case, you exclude having had your computer returned?

    MP:  No, absolutely.

    LM:  That, by your knowledge, is in Perugia?

    MP:  I think I remember having done a request of release [to Milan] that unfortunately was rejected.

    LM:  If you do it here in Perugia, probably you will have a better result. Another question, before you spoke of the fact that when you entered the legal office on the evening of October 14th you saw lights on. The light that was on, where was it situated?

    MP:  At the instant I entered the legal office, it was dark obviously, inside the office, and I had not yet turned on the light, I noticed the shining of the bathroom light on.

    LM:  Had the bathroom been used?

    MP:  The bathroom”¦ honestly this I can’t tell you, that is I can’t know if it was used, from evident signs I think not, but, that is a simple supposition on my part , that does not have much value.

    LM:  Thank you.

    GCM:  There were no signs of it having been used.

    MP:  Yes, no signs of use, no odor.

    GCM:  This is what the lawyer was asking. Other questions? For the prosecution? There are no questions. Excuse me, probably just a peculiarity, the window that was broken, if you can give us a description? Are there inner shutters, outer shutters?

    MP:  It is a French window that gives out to a small terrace that overlooks an inner courtyard of the building, and below our window, right in alignment, there is a door covered with a metal mesh, so much so that we supposed that whoever entered inside the legal office, one of the possible hypothesis, climbed that metal mesh, because it is a mesh, with squares not more than fifteen centimeters, thus perfectly usable for this purpose. It is a French window that has inner shutters. It doesn’t have”¦I don’t remember, I think it has”¦ because there was a period when our legal office, for reasons of restoration, eliminated all the outer shutters. So I don’t remember if in that moment it had or not the outer shutters, I think not, but I would say something I don’t remember exactly.

    GCM:  I also wanted to ask you, there were only the two jackets on the glass? Where there other items of clothing that indicated a search in wardrobes, or only these two jackets? 

    MP:  Honestly I would not be able to remember.

    GCM:  You remember of these two jackets, that one was yours.

    MP:  Yes because I don’t think there were other clothingsd in the office. I don’t remember if there were others”¦ besides the toga of Lawyer Brocchi, but it was left”¦

    GCM:  I wanted to ask you, these jackets where [normally] were they? On a coat rack?

    MP:  They were on a coat rack that is to the right of the entrance to the legal office, they were on a coat rack, a bluish jacket of Lawyer”¦

    GCM:  Not in a wardrobe?

    MP:  No, no, not in a wardrobe, on a coatrack.

    GCM:  A coatrack.

    MP:  A coatrack, yes.

    GCM:  I also wanted to ask you, you spoke of a small pile of glass.

    MP:  Yes.

    GCM:  That is, what was it, a small gathered pile or scattered?

    MP:  A small gathered pile of glass.

    GCM:  Purposely put there?

    MP:  I don’t know that.

    GCM:  A little gathered pile, not scattered..

    MP:  Not scattered glass as the ones”¦

    GCM:  Not scattered glass but a small pile.

    MP:  A small pile of glass.

    GCM:  Originating from the broken window?

    MP:  Probably yes even because there was no other broken window if not that one and there were no other bottle or other things inside the legal office.

    GCM:  The computer, can you describe it? Seen as you said: “you gathered your thoughts” you remember something”¦

    MP:  If I can see it, I will be able to say if it is mine..

    GCM:  It’s not that the invoice has”¦

    MP:  No, my computer is a Sony Vaio with a white cover, but the model is not”¦

    GCM:  Okay.

    LM:  With regard to the question by the President”¦

    GCM:  Please proceed.

    LM:  In connection to the glass, the glass of the broken window, was this glass scattered?

    MP:  In part scattered, I gather, seeing as there weren’t others”¦that the others clustered inside the waiting room were from that glass, but not”¦

    LM:  So there was glass scattered both inside the room where the window was broken, and in adjacent rooms?

    MP:  Let’s agree that the scattered glass, covered by the jackets, was in the corridor that leads to the administrative office, which is to the right of the entrance and is in front of the French window from where the individuals had”¦

    LM:  So, in conclusion, there was a scattering of glass”¦

    MP:  Yes.

    LM:  “¦ let’s say with enough range”¦

    MP:  More than where the jackets were located.

    LM:  Thank you.

    MDG:  May I, President, just one question?

    GCM:  Yes, please proceed, Lawyer.

    MDG:  Do you remember if you had inserted a password on your computer.

    GCM:  Okay, maybe the last questions, on the computer.

    MDG:  On the computer model, President.

    MP:  No.

    MDG:  It was not inserted?

    MP:  No.

    MDG:  Thank you.

    GCM:  The witness is excused.

    There are no other questions; the witness is dismissed.

     


    Friday, December 26, 2014

    Guede Hoax: Translation Of Lawyers Testimony #1 On Breakin Shows No Concrete Connection To Guede

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Christmas in Milan where Rudy had an ambiguous encounter in a pre-school in October 2007


    Our previous post showed the giant scale and surreal flavor, and the hard facts left out of the innuendo, of the crackpots of the Knox-Mellas campaign.

    Innuendo will get them precisely nowhere. All the courts that have processed the case have warned about this, except for the hapless Judge Hellmann’s, and in March 2013 Cassation was especially sharp in warning that unless there is EVIDENCE to the contrary the hard facts presented to the panels of judges must be respected.

    For evidentiary reasons exclusively, Rudy Guede has never been charged with breaking and entering. Guede got no breaks, ever, contrary to myriad claims.

    The one questionable location where he was found was the nursery school in Milan. As he apparently used a key from one of the staff, any breakin trial would have been dead on arrival. No law required that he be detained. (He was however later charged with being in possession of stolen property,  and just a few days ago his sentence was extended by 16 months.)

    The previous post in this series showed how similar to the BACK BALCONY route to a forced break-in of Meredith’s house was the supposed route into the Perugia lawyers’ offices. It had nothing in common with Filomena’s window, contrary to myriad claims.

    This post and the next in this series show how the evidentiary proof that it was Guede (and not someone with a grudge or a trial opponent) who broke into the Perugia lawyers’ office is ambiguous and contradictory. Some signs point away from Guede, not least that photocopies apparently made of legal documentation (the copier was on and copy paper missing) would have required the use of a car.

    This post is on the testimony of the lawyer Brocchi (owner of the cellphone) and the third post is on the testimony of the lawyer Palazolli (owner of the Sony Vaio computer). Brocchi was quite talkative, despite his minor role, and so we will hold our highlights and interpretation for the next post.

    The extensive translation of the difficult language here and in the post still to come was kindly provided by Miriam.

    The witness, admonished pursuant to Article 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, reads the oath.

    General Information: Paolo Brocchi born in Rome, March 2, 1968

    GCM: Please proceed.

    LM:  Good Morning, lawyer Maori, for the defense of Sollecito.

    PB: Good morning.

    LM: It is an unnecessary question, but I must ask it. The first question is this: what profession do you hold?

    PB: Lawyer.

    LM: Where is your legal office?

    PB: In via del Roscetto no.3 in Perugia.

    LM: Did your office undergo a burglary in 2007, in October 2007?

    PB: Yes.

    LM: Can you tell us how this burglary took place, how the thieves got in, and what was taken?

    PB: Certainly, the burglary was discovered by my colleague lawyer Palazzoli, the owner of the office, he told me about it on a Sunday afternoon, because the theft took place….. It was done between the night of 13th and 14th of October 2007, a night between Saturday and Sunday. The burglary was discovered by my colleague, the lawyer Palazzoli, on Sunday afternoon, because he entered the office to look for a professional file, and upon entering he discovered the burglary. The person or persons that entered inside the office, from what we were able to reconstruct together with members of the Squadra Mobile that intervened for us at the office, they entered through a window situated in the secretary’s office that was subjected to broken glass, the glass of this window was broken with the aid of a piece of porphyry, a big rock that we found there at the spot. The window was broken, then these persons or person turned the handle. The glass clearly was spread everywhere, because it was a rather thick glass. After which, on top of these pieces of glass we found our clothes. For the most part the glass was scattered on the floor and on top of the glass were our jackets, mine and my colleague’s Palazzoli, that had been hanging on the clothes hanger in the corridor right in front of the window.

    LM: Excuse me if I interrupt you, to reconstruct the dynamics of the event exactly . It would seem   that the 13th of October was a Saturday.

    PB:  From what I remember, yes.

    LM: Your colleague had remained in the office until….........

    PB: No, I stayed in the office. Saturday I remained in the office because I had a client on Saturday   afternoon, that was something anomalous, but it was for an urgent discussion. I called for a meeting that Saturday morning, then he arrived in the afternoon, and I left the office at 8.30 pm that Saturday.

    LM: 8.30 pm that Saturday and after, the following Sunday, the evening…...

    PB: The day after, Sunday, I was called on the telephone by lawyer Palazzoli, who told me “Look somebody came into the office, I have already called the Carabinieri”, who then because of the jurisdiction of the old town center, as we found out, alerted the Squadra Mobile of the State Police.

    LM: Does your office have an alarm?

    PB:  The office was fitted out with an alarm, but that evening it was not activated, because, as I reconstruct the event, it had just been installed. That evening I left at 8.30 pm. I remember perfectly that I did not activate the alarm system. The strange thing that I can highlight in connection here is that I noticed the alarm system the next day, when we entered, was not damaged, the bright light was functioning even if it was dis-activated, and the person or persons that entered did not damage the alarm, they only dis-activated the telephonic combination, thus with this they manifested a minimum confidence, a certain competence in the subject matter of alarms, of electronics, because to dis-activate a telephonic combination without damaging the alarm, I would not be capable, even being the owner, thus I would not have this competence.

    LM:  One other thing. You spoke then about a window that “¦..

    PB:  Yes, apparently

    LM:  Was that the only break in?

    BB:  Yes

    LM:  Is it a window that gives onto the main street or onto a private court yard?

    PB:  No, this window gives out to a private court yard that is than protected from the public street by an exterior gate. So it is probable…. I don’t know if can be possible…. because close to that window there are other windows of other apartments, there are… there is a window that is about one meter from the balcony of my office, so everything is possible. But this person or persons if they came from the public street would have to open a gate that gives on private property and then, with the help of I don’t know which tools, climb up for three, four meters on a vertical wall to then arrive to the terrace ,where was located my office, where it is still located, first up to this window and then through this window enter inside my office, if this was the way in.

    LM:  However this break in took place in this window, three/four meters high.

    PB:  More or less

    LM:  Did you find a ladder close by?

    PB:  No

    LM:  Did you find other tools?

    PB:  No. I remember that we inspected with the Squadra Mobile crew. I should say that the property below us has a door, an armored mesh and a particularly able person could have climbed up. Could have, I don’t know, this is just an assumption.

    LM:  Anyhow it was not easy to climb up.

    PB:  Absolutely not.

    LM:  Before, you spoke about this rock, this porphyry..

    PB:  Yes

    LM:  Where was it found, inside or outside?

    PB:  Strangely, right on the little terrace, evidently the person or persons that entered with the help of this very heavy porphyry because a double glass had to be broken, it was not a thin glass, but it was that type of glass utilized mainly for thermal insulation, certainly not for security reasons, evidently it needed a heavy impact in order to somehow succeed in the intent, otherwise a small piece of rock would evidently have been sufficient.

    LM:  What was taken from inside the office?

    PB:  So, at first we noticed that the office was in a state of general disarray : all the archive was turned upside down, all the files of the offices were piled up in a heap. But from the first inventory that we did there at the moment, this was missing: a new computer belonging to the lawyer Palazzoli, a note book the brand of which I absolutely do not remember [actually a Sony], a USB flash drive used to save data, a portable Canon printer which was mine, and then a few days later, when I was contacted by a crew of the Police of Milan, agent Spesi Rita, I realized that they had also stolen a cell phone, that anyhow was not working properly, that furthermore was included in the process of investigation (SDI) of the Police Force. Therefore there was also this cell phone, that beforehad I had quit using and didn’t even remember about, that was in the drawer of my desk.

    LM:  Lawyer, were money and checks stolen too?

    PB: No, there were none.

    LM: On this I have to challenge, that you on the complaint of the burglary indicated also checks from the Banca delle Marche [were stolen].

    PB: No I will explain the reasoning. Those checks at the first moment appeared to us not present. There was a block that was finished, but then after checking with the bank, those checks had been annulled, so in reality they hadn’t been stolen. The verification that we did at the bank the Monday after, highlighted that I had annulled those checks and the bank had trace of it, so nobody took anything.

    LM:  Another thing before speaking of the recovery of the computer, you told us of the small havoc done inside your office.

    PB:  Yes.

    LM:  You spoke of the ransacking, in addition to, as you said before, of the broken glass with your clothes on top. Was also the photo-copy machine utilized?

    PB:  I am not able to say that. It was easily usable because it was not code protected, but this I am not able to…

    LM:  Did they turn on the heating?

    PB:  Yes, when we entered the heating system was on, as matter of fact there was a torrid temperature inside the office, because it remained on, I think, more than 24 hours, in a month, October, that was not particularly cold. Furthermore I noticed that this person or persons that entered inside my office even made use of drinks that were in a cabinet, leaving…. they even opened the cabinet of the first aid meticulously looking for everything that was inside, but more than anything else disinfectants and blood pressure gauge, this type of things, but they really did an accurate selection of the material present inside the first aid cabinet.

    LM: Returning to the computer, the property of…..

    PB: Of the lawyer Palazzoli, yes.

    LM: Was it discovered at a later date?

    PB: Well, we never saw it. I say, that the 27th of October 2007, around noon, it was a Saturday, I was in the office in a anomalous way because generally I had the first 3 hours at school and the last 3 hours are normally always….. making 6 hours Saturday morning. But that morning I left early and I was in the office. A telephone call came in on the land line, a call from the police station Venezia Garibaldi from the Milan Police, the agent Rita Spesi, who told me that they had found an individual, of whom I was not given general information, nor the gender, I was only told that certain goods were on this individual, that if I remember correctly they were found inside a kindergarten, a school, an institute of learning, and in this instance, among goods that were in possession of this individual or better held by this individual, this person also had this cellphone. Turning it on, my name appeared, and from here the police officer by way of a search of the SDI system of investigation, saw my complaint of theft of October 15th 2007, and so she asked me if proveably those goods were my property.

    LM:  Therefore the telephone and computer?

    PB:  Telephone without doubt, the computer was described to me, it was not mine, I manifested doubts in the sense that…... well I had never seen it, or used it, because it was my colleague’s, who had just bought it, a short time ago he had just bought it. On the computer I manifested doubts. On the telephone, on the telephone however by way of the names of the address menu, the clients and friends of mine, I was able to confirm with certainty that at least my SIM card was on that phone.

    LM:  It is a Sony model…..no excuse me…..

    PB: No, the telephone is a Nokia.

    LM: It is a Nokia, model 6310.

    PB: Nokia, for sure, the model now not….....

    LM: Like this one, so to….....

    PB: Yes, exactly.

    LM: 6310.

    PB: It is the same color, if I remember correctly.

    LM: However this is not yours, it is mine.

    PB: No, fine.

    LM:  Was the name of the person that was stopped given to you by agent Rita Spessi?

    PB:  No, absolutely not.

    LM:  Did you then find out the name of this person?

    PB:  No, this happened on October 27th when the police officer calls me. All ends with this telephone call in which I stated I recognized at least the cell phone. On October 29th, a Monday afternoon I am in the office and on the phone with some clients. October 29th, I may be mistaken, but I believe I mentally reconstructed the facts in this way, I did not take notes, I must be honest. October 29th my attention - I was on the phone - my attention was drawn by a commotion in the lobby, the common reception area outside the office. I hear voices in the corridor, I am still on the phone, afterward I get closer to see that an assistant of the office, Dott. Luciano Morini, is speaking with someone. Before I can realize what is happening, he tells me “Look Paolo, here is a person that says that he was found with merchandise, goods, objects that were reported stolen by you and your colleague Palazzoli, but that he bought them in Milan close to the train station in central Milan”. At which I go to the corridor and I see, at the entrance of the lobby, a colored person that has a basketball in his hands and is dressed in sport clothes. These things surprised me, because we were at the end of October and it was kind of cold, it struck me quite a bit seeing this person in sport clothes, a tank top like those used by basketball players, and a basketball. I recognized the basketball because I played basketball for twenty years, so I know how to recognize one.  At that point I say: “Look I don’t know who you are”, he answered: “I don’t know who you are either”, I replied: ” Look we are only interested in having our belongings returned” and that was all. At that point I went back to the office. I don’t know if the person stayed in front of the office, and anyhow I close the door and there it ended. A few weeks later, may be a month later, I’m not sure, some time later I see on the newspapers photographs of a person that was associated with the matters of this proceeding, from which I recognized the person that presented himself that afternoon on October 29th, before the matters that brought to this proceeding, at the office to say that, yes he was found at that location in Milan by the crew of the Squadra Mobile, of the police station Venezia Garibaldi, that he did not…. tell me but tell to my colleague Morini, that he did not take anything from anybody but those things he obtained by purchasing them.

    LM:  Who is this person? Can you give us a name and surname?

    PB: Doctor Luciano Morini that…....

    LM: No, no, I say…....you told us of your assistant. You said that this colored person that you did not know, that you saw for the first time October 29th 2007, then at a later stage had the means to see by the newspaper who it was.

    PB: Yes.

    LM:  Can you give us the name and surname of this person?

    PB: I believe that I recognized in that person this Mr. Rudy Hermann Guede, that is not a defendant   in this proceeding, but is involved in the other one…..

    LM: Always in reference to October 29th , at the moment this person came to your studio, you said : “This person arrived , and spoke with my colleague Morini”.

    PB:  Yes.

    LM: And he told you: “I do not know you”. These are the exact words that you said before?

    PB: When I was on the landing, I said….....

    LM: That which Guede said to you.

    PB: That which I said to him, because I spoke first and said: “Look I do not know who you are”. He responds: ” I don’t know who you are either”, furthermore in a perfect Italian, with a Perugian accent, something that surprised me, because been a person”¦”¦ but everything is possible. To which I told him, “look let’s cut it short we are not interested. We are only interested in getting our goods back “, end.

    LM:  But naturally you knew the subject of the discussion between”¦.

    PB:  Because a moment before Dr. Morini related to me “look there is a person outside that says that he bought goods that you and your colleague reported stolen, he bought them in Milan”.

    LM:  One last thing. Concerning the computer of your colleague Pazzoli, do you remember the brand, the model?

    PB:  No, I’m not able to answer.

    LM:  Thank you.

    GCM:  Please proceed.

    LG:  Excuse me Lawyer Brocchi, I am Ghirga. Your office is on which street?

    PB:  Via del Roscetto, 3.

    LG:  First”¦. You already told us the height, can you repeat it?

    PB:  The office is on a raised floor, technically, it is not a first floor, is a raised ground floor, that means that from the entrance of the building you go up ten steps to enter the condominium, then on the left end side there is the entrance to the office.

    LG:  An what about this terrace window?

    PB:  It is on the other side of the building.

    LG:  From the outside how much can it”¦

    PB:  Let’s say that are a few meters, may be three, four, but I am not able “¦..because I never measured it.

    LG:  But you were speaking of an access from another street that intersects Via del Roscetto?

    PB:  Exactly there is an intersection, Via del Lupo, going downhill.

    LG:  Via del Lupo

    PB:  Via del Lupo, if I remember correctly, it goes down till you reach a dead end, it comes to a courtyard behind the building and then there is another courtyard that is private property enclosed by a gate. If these person or persons entered through here they would have had to open that gate to get inside to what I described before to get into the office.

    LG:  Thank you, I wanted to clarify that.

    GCM:  Mr. Prosecutor, please proceed.

    PM:  (unintelligible - no microphone) ?

    PB:  In effect I don’t know. Seeing as I was alerted to these happenings by agent Rita Spessi of the police station Venezia Garibaldi, sometime later, together with my colleague, we filed an application for the repossession of these goods at the central penal record office of the Procura di Milano, via Manara. After 24 hours an agent, an operator, or a clerk of the central penal record office, calls me on the telephone and tells me: “Look, Lawyer, we saw the application of release, but to us form 21, does not result in any procedure”. To which I said: “How can it be that no form 21 procedure shows up ? The agents would have done a CNR, or not? At least by the end of their duty, having found a person in possession of stolen goods should have reported”¦”, “Look , there are no results of this procedure”

    PM:  (unintelligible - no microphone) ?

    PB:  Form 21, subject known, in the sense that in the Procura della Repubblica there are various forms, 21, 45, 44, relative documents, etc.

    PM:  (unintelligible - no microphone) ?

    PB:  No, I looked for it as a form 21, but even then they”¦..I even asked: “Be patient, I will look for it on the other forms”, to which he said: “We cannot find it”. Given that some time had passed this caused me some surprise. That’s it.

    PM:  But they notified you (unintelligible - no microphone) ?

    PB:  No, never.

    PM:  So then this procedure in any case is not a charge (inaudible - outside the microphone)?

    PB:  This I don’t know. I only say that the application of release, I filed it, and that the central penal record office of the Procura called telling me that they could not find the application filed by me and my colleague as the offended parties and no other relative documents regarding this procedure.

    PM:  When did this happen?

    PB:  2008, last year in the spring, months and months after”¦..

    PM:  Did you by any chance verify if there was (unintelligible audible-outside the microphone)?

    PB:  No, no.

    PM:  (unintelligible - no microphone) ?

    LM:  I oppose this question by the Public Prosecutor because I would like to make it known to the court that we know that there is a penal proceeding, the Public Prosecutor D’Amico in Milan even has it. We asked for the acquisition, and we have right here”¦”¦

    GCM:  Excuse me lawyer, what is the motive for your opposition?

    LM:  Because the Public Prosecutor is asking if there is a penal proceeding, when in reality”¦”¦

    GMC:  Excuse me Lawyer, but the Public prosecutor is asking questions to the witness on what he knows. That if evidences comes out from other sources, they will be acquired. The objection is rejected. Please Public Prosecutor.

    PM:  (unintelligible - no microphone) ?

    PB:  Yes, it is a palace of the 15 century

    PM:  Do you know, by chance, which was the path (unintelligible ““ no microphone)?

    PB:  I can presume it, having found the glasses in the inside, that”¦.

    Note: in this moment the PM microphone is turned on

    PM:  Therefore before I could not be heard.

    GCM:  The answers have been”¦

    PM:  The answers were”¦

    GCM:  Yes.

    PM:  I understand.

    GCM:  The other questions”¦ excuse me, the Public Prosecutor was asking if something to you results”¦

    PM:  If there is a proceeding, and you say there is not one.

    PB:  No, I don’t say there isn’t one, It does not result from me because the the central penal record office of the Procura di Milan, calling me on the telephone, referred to me the day after, that up to that date there was no registration. Now, everything is possible, that they it registered it later, I don’t know.

    PM:  You did not have any news, in any case”¦

    PB:  Never, never.

    PM:  Did you receive an extension of the investigation?

    PB:  Never, never.

    PM:  Let’s go back to the position of this”¦ then this office is on the ground floor”¦

    PB:  Raised ground floor.

    PM:  “¦ raised ground floor. From what point do you arrive?

    PB:  On via della Roscetto there are 2 windows on the raised ground floor, on the street front, that are the rooms of my colleague Palazzoli and mine. Then there are”¦

    PM:  What is the distance from the ground?

    PB:  From via della Roscetto it is minimum 3 meters, yes 3 meters, because I am tall”¦ well it’s 2 or 3 meters. Then going down via del Lupo, there is a slope, until this public courtyard, because via del Lupo is a dead end. Thereafter, from this side the height increases, let’s say, it increases slightly after this small slope, therefore the ground goes up and there is an internal court yard that is accessible from the public courtyard through an iron gate. Going through this gate you arrive at this private courtyard, than there is an armored door with a mesh, so that one with the mesh is on the ground floor, looking up you see this balcony, this little terrace that is outside is my office, that is situated “¦.. more than three meters, between three and four meters from ground level.

    PM:  So, this door with the mesh is a door and not a window.

    PB:  No, it is a door

    PM:  Therefore all the way to the ground.

    PB:  Yes

    PM:  How high is it?

    PB:  More than two meters for sure.

    PM:  So after this door, there is another meter to arrive”¦ or a meter and a half, two meters?

    PB:  I presume at least another meter.

    PM:  Another meter to arrive to the balcony.

    PB:  At least.

    PM:  Where was the porphyry rock found?

    PB:  On the balcony, on the outside.

    PM:  You said that inside “¦ can you describe what you found? How was the”¦..

    PB:  The situation.

    PM:  So the rock was outside.

    PB:  The rock was outside, the glass was inside, the glass of the window in part on the corridor and they were covered with our clothes, mine and those of Lawyer Palazzoli, placed right on top of the glass.

    PM:  They were on top of the glass.

    PB:  On top of the glass, and the thing surprised us, “maybe” we said “to not make noise passing over them”, I don’t know, it is only a supposition. After which they were in the room of the photocopier other pieces of fragments of glass always coming from that window, the only one broken, they were situated on a small rug that was right in front of a workplace, a computer. Then right in front of this there were drinks, real close, open, partially consumed. Then we went into the other room, where the filing cabinet is, it was completely turned upside down. All the drawers were open, all the files were taken and the papers all mixed up on the floor, there were a mountain of paper, an entire archive practically mixed up, that many things we were never able to find, some later, some first, others later. Therefore this was the situation. Then inside my room, on my desk, there was a leather suitcase belonging to me, on top of this suitcase in a very orderly way were placed some screwdrivers, pliers, a hammer, facing the window, all perfectly aligned and facing the window. Even here all the papers in disarray. A chest of drawers was opened, inside were files, all the records of the law practice funds, all the annual quotas of the inscriptions, all things that we found eventually with a lot of effort, mixed one on top of the other. Even here was another filing cabinet of my dossiers that was opened and all the papers mixed up. Then inside of the administrative office there were, there are all the folders with the contracts of the intensity bills, with the deed to the office, all upside down. There was the placement of the [printer] that was”¦ let’s say there had been activity, because we found receipts scattered close to the machine, so there had been”¦at the least this person or persons had gone to satisfy themselves of what that instrument was. This was”¦

    PM:  Listen, was the cell phone given back to you?

    PB:  No, I asked for the release, I deposited “¦

    PM:  So it is in possession of the police or the procura?

    PB:  Office of the body of evidence, I presume.

    PM:  Fine. I don’t have any other questions.

    GCM:  Questions from the civil parties? None, President. The defense can complete it’s questioning.

    LM:  I would like to deposit a record that naturally is in the dossier of the Public Prosecutor and on the basis of this record then ask questions of the witness.

    GCM:  Maybe put this record at”¦

    LM:  It’s about.. this can be useful to the lawyer because the number of the penal procedure that charges Rudy Guede is indicated and a warning effected on February 1, 2008 by the Procuratore della Repubblica, the assistant D’Amico, that is carrying out the investigation with regard on Rudy Guede for the crime of theft, receiving stolen good, and for the crime of carrying an illegal weapon, law 110 of ‘75. This information was also given to the Procura della Repubblica of Peruga, to Dr Mignini, with communication via fax.

    PB:  When was the procedure registered? Ah excuse me,I can’t”¦

    GCM:  Let’s see the document. So the parties have seen this document?

    LM:  There is an error in the writing of Dr Mignini (“Dr Minnini”) but it can be understood that it is his fax and and it was even addressed “¦

    GCM:  Even the defense of Knox knows this”¦?

    LG:  (unintelligible no microphone) ?

    GCM:  The question in relation to this document?

    LM:  The question is this, Doctor D’ Amico makes aware that all of the confiscated material and thus the computer and the Nokia cell phone, had already on the date of February 1, 2008, prior to February 1, 2008, been passed on to the police station of Perugia.

    PB:  So it is in Perugia.

    LM:  The question is this, I would like to know, did you request in the first days of the year 2008 to the police station the return of”¦

    PB:  No, I did so to the Procura di Milan, believing that it was held in the body of evidence of the Procura di Milano, because those people told me they were found in Milan and that it was probable evidence of a criminal activity. Therefore, I thought to make a request of release to the Procura di Milano.

    LM:  Reading the letter sent by Dr D’ Amico , for the Procura di Perugia, both the computer and the cell phone are indicated. Can you recognize the computer, property of your colleague?

    PB:  I say that the cell phone without doubt was a Nokia; the 27th of October 2007 is true because it was Saturday; the Sony Vaio I cannot be certain of the brand, because I absolutely don’t remember it, because it was not even mine, , therefore I don’t know. The attempted aggravated theft, 56, 624, 625, 648”¦

    GCM:  Only on the objects.

    PB:  Yes. No, the objects”¦ I can only say about the cell phone.

    GCM:  So only the cell phone.

    LM:  I ask for the acquisition so as to demonstrate that, indeed, there is a penal proceeding.

    GCM:  Agreed. Other questions?

    PB:  So it is pending in Milan. The strange thing that I can say to the president is this”¦  I see that it includes the form 21/2007. So I don’t understand why the Penal Central Record Office told me that it was not pending”¦

    GCM:  Excuse me layer, let’s go back to the testimonial questioning, therefore on the circumstantial facts.

    LM:  Let’s go back to the reconstruction of the entry path in your office by the thief. To the question by the Public prosecutor you explained, as you explained to me, that this window is at the height of about 3/4meters from the ground floor.

    PB:  From via del Lupo, yes

    LM:  Then you refer to a door, an iron door which is close”¦

    PB:  Yes, I confirm.

    LM:  And this iron door at what distance is from the window?

    PB:  It is perpendicular just under the window.

    LM:  So therefore there were, let’s say, coarseness on this door that could allow an eventual”¦

    PB:  A fit person, not I; a fit person, not someone like me, could have climbed up with the risk of plummeting to the ground, because there is clearly no protection, there is nothing but a vertical wall.

    LM:  I do understand. One last thing, the window from which the thieves entered as you indicated, is higher than the other windows?

    PB:  No, because the office is on the same level and it is exactly”¦you mean compared to the office or as per the window height?

    LM:  Compared to the street level and the other windows.

    PB:  No, at this point, when you get to little terrace you are practically at the level of the other windows.

    LM:  One last thing, when that man on the 29th of October that man, Rudy Guede, came to your office”¦

    PB:  No, not in the office, he was on”¦

    LM:  On the landing?

    PB:  Not even, he was in the entrance”¦ on the steps between the street and the entrance of the office”¦part of the lobby. He did not enter the office.

    LM:  His intention was to come inside the office, to come to you?

    PB:  I don’t know. As a matter of fact he didn’t know who I was, because, when he rang he rang on Legal Office, because evidently somebody had told him that those goods had been”¦ but I repeat, I did not speak with him, therefore no”¦ they are all things told to me by Dott. Morini, so they are not of my direct knowledge.

    LM:  Thank you.

    GCM:  When did this take place?

    PB:  This happened Monday afternoon around 5, late afternoon on October 29th 2007

    GCM:  So how many days after the theft?

    PB:  The theft was October 13th, this on the 29th .

    GCM:  If there no other question the witness is excused.

    There are no other questions; the witness is dismissed.

    GCM:  The communication from the Procura della Repubblica, Tribunale Ordinario of Milano dated the 1st of February 2008 is acquired in order to be used. Who is next?

    LM:  Lawyer Palazzoli



    Tuesday, December 23, 2014

    Calling Planet Knox: Maybe Chris Mellas And Bruce Fischer Need To Rein In Their Crackpot Brigade

    Posted by Peter Quennell





    Above is Chris Mellas with Curt Knox, who we are told maybe thinks the way-too-rabid Mellases now damage the prospects of Knox. 

    Here is some chest-thumping babble on the reliably dishonest website GroundReport by one of Chris Mellas’s crackpot gang, the singularly foolish crackpot Jay.

    Today I examine the role of the Italian judiciary in the framing of Amanda Knox and Raffaelle Sollecito for the murder of Meredith Kercher, the skillful way Giuliano Mignini used the Italian media to hold the entire judiciary hostage to his career ambitions, and why I believe the Italian judiciary may finally be ready to fully exonerate Amanda and Raffaelle of any involvement in the murder of Ms Kercher.

    This case has been out of the hands of Dr Mignini for over five years - if it ever was fully in his hands. He initially took a decidedly mild stance against Knox, who he thought, through drugs and mental problems, had got in over her head and Meredith’s death was not planned.

    In fact from the day after Knox’s arrest the no-nonsense Judge Matteini and Judge Ricciarelli led the case all the way to trial. They got all their information directly from THE POLICE. In light of hard evidence and a psychological report they insisted a potentially dangerous Knox be kept locked up. In April 2008 Cassation very strongly agreed.

    Pretty bizarre to see a Mignini witchunt in this, or a judiciary about to reverse itself on years of meticulous work.

    At the time of the Meredith Kercher murder on November 1, 2007, the Italian judiciary was was locked in a struggle with the Perugian prosecutor Giuliano Mignini. Mignini was facing charges for abuse of office, relating to his “˜Narducci Trail’ investigations.

    This is more chest-thumping babble by the crackpot Jay. Dr Mignini rarely even talks to the media and he is regarded by good reporters as especially careful with the truth. The Italian justice system is not only one of the world’s most careful and most pro-victim-rights, it is very popular and trusted in Italy second only to the President who is also the Justice System’s top dog.

    Dr Mignini’s past caseload as a prosecutor was quite mundane as Kermit’s meticulous and powerful Powerpoint showed. Perugia and its region of Umbria are among the most prosperous and least crime-ridden in Italy toward which the very popular Dr Mignini contributed a great deal over the years.

    Dr Mignini rose to his present seniority of Deputy Prosecutor-General in Umbria because on his merits he consistently excelled. He is often on national TV (among other things ridiculing conspiracy theories and the too-ready blaming of crimes on satanism) and has high-level professional friends and supporters throughout Italy, not least in Florence where he has known senior colleagues since law-school.   

    Mignini and his colleague Michele Giutarri had both been indicted after Mignini had Mario Spezi arrested and briefly imprisoned, in connection with the Monster of Florence crimes. Spezi was released just three weeks later, after an intense media campaign by his writing partner the American author Douglas Preston.

    But rather than back off of his satanic sect Narducci trail investigations, Mignini instead plowed ahead with still more satanic sect cases. At the time of the Kercher murder, Mignini had a case unravelling in Florence against a pharmacist and friend of Spezi’s named Francesco Calamandrei.

    When the Calamandrei case was dismissed in 2008, Mignini pressed his next “˜satanic sect’ case against the 20 innocent people in Florence, including Spezi and members of the Narducci family. Mignini had also tried at first to link the Kercher murder to “rites related to Halloween”.... It is these two convictions, these two false convictions, which the Italian judiciary is in my view trying so desperately to protect.

    More chest-thumping babble by the crackpot Jay. The vast majority of Italians believe the truth of the Monster of Florence case is as set out in the exceptional book Il Mostro by Michele Giuttari in which there really was and is a shadowy group. It was for proving this that a desperate Florence prosecutor took Mignini and Giuttari to court.

    We have shown repeatedly that the fading fiction-writer Preston often does not tell the truth. After his near-arrest for falsifying evidence to seek to make Spezi and himself world-famous for “solving” the MOF case,  Preston took off out of Italy like a terrified rabbit and has tried to prove he actually has a backbone ever since.

    Italians know that in his one brief formal interview with Dr Mignini Preston melted down. He blubbered and wailed while he lied and lied, and was considered so incompetent and naive he might as well be given a break.

    Here from a public document arguing for custody of Mario Spezi (the “brains” of the two, if that is not a stretch) is a conversation between the publicity-hungry Inspector Clouseaus (through public sources we have also obtained the tapes) thinking here that they have made the cops look like foolish dupes:

    [The word “passeggiata” (leisure walk) in the context of these statements makes little sense literally; in fact, it is a code word by which both Spezi and Preston mean the police visit to Villa Bibbiani that Spezi and Zaccaria are plotting to trigger by way of a letter they wrote reporting false incriminating testimony, and by way of which they expect the police to find the false pieces of evidence contained in six boxes that they are going to place in the villa. Preston is aware of this intended fraud, and he is happy about it, because he presumably expects that from such an operation their “Sardinian track” theory would gain visibility as a media scoop and he and Spezi would become world-famous from it, sell a lot of books, and make a lot of money out of it. So “passeggiata” is really the police eating their bait, going there, and finding their forged false evidence in the house.]

    In conversation n. 17077 of Feb. 18. 2006, PRESTON calls Mr. SPEZI, who informs him, expressing satisfaction:

    “We have done everything.. I mean”¦ we went and we did it”¦  you know my telephone is ugly [sic]”¦”

    and Mr. PRESTON, still in a chummy and allusive tone:

    “Oh yes, I understand perfectly, yes, hey”¦ the”¦ the”¦ the “˜passeggiata’ isn’t that”¦ isn’t that”¦ we have “¦  someone has done the “˜passeggiata’?”

    and the journalist pointed out, interspersing that with chuckles of satisfaction: “No, no, no, but”¦ they are going to do it!!”

    and Mr. PRESTON: “Yes, yes”¦ but”¦ isn’t that interesting wow”¦.”

    and Mr. SPEZI: “”¦. We told them to do it !”

    At PRESTON’s question about when they would be going to do the “˜passeggiata’, SPEZI answers: “Well”¦ I don’t know but I hope soon” and at a further question by PRESTON, he says: “In.. within.. within the 24th”

    SPEZI again answers: “I hope yes”, laughing.

    Then, Mr. Preston adds: “It’s fantastic!... Oh the end maybe, I don’t know but”¦”

    and Mr. SPEZI: “That would be beautiful!” still sniggering, and Mr. PRESTON agrees enthusiastically.

    After his charging, in conversation n. 17231, Mr. PRESTON calls SPEZI and tells him that they need to speak about it in person.

    The criminal operation stands out even more egregiously in conversation n. 16950 of February 13. 2006, between Mr. SPEZI, the deviser of the plot, and his right hand man Nando Zaccaria; and when RUOCCO gives Mr. SPEZI “information” about the name of the person who allegedly attended the villa, Mr. SPEZI himself calls Mr. ZACCARIA, and, while making him understand that Mr. Gianfranco Bernabei had already been contacted and the report-complaint had been given to him, he adds: “So he called me.. not him Gianfranco”¦ the other guy, we have an appointment at 2:30pm, because he knew about the name”; and ZACCARIA cries out: “Beautifullllll!” with satisfaction.

    In conversation n. 17095 of February 19. 2006, Mr. SPEZI calls Mr. ZACCARIA again and urges him to explain him (to the Flying Squad chief) thoroughly about the “six small boxes”, that is to convince him that the objects are related to the murders. Mr. ZACCARIA tells him that he already explained it to the other guy and says: “If they go there they must look very well.. at everything”¦”, and Mr. SPEZI: “What I mean to say”¦ if he finds a hairpin this doesn’t mean anything to him”¦”, making him understand that he will need to “work” him out.

    Mr. ZACCARIA adds in the end: “Then I told him, well while we go”¦ when it’s”¦ when you are going”¦ he says anyway he advises us”. Mr. SPEZI says he agrees and Mr. ZACCARIA reassures him saying he [Bernabei] doesn’t know anything about the case and never dealt with it, then he complains about that the nowadays officers are incapable of doing their job. Thus the chief of the Flying Squad, Dr. Fillippo Ferri, will need to be led by “malicious” Mr. ZACCARIA. Then Mr. SPEZI asks Mr. ZACCARIA to advise him when he goes there (to the Villa). Anyway we remand to the unequivocal content of the conversation, at pages 6, 7 and 8 of request n. 114/06 G.I.De.S.

    Back to analysing more from the crackpot Jay.

    And Mignini, by continuing to file “˜Narducci trail’ cases, and invoking the same “˜satanic sect’ conspiracy theory, was holding the judiciary hostage to his unprincipled career ambitions.  The challenge Mignini presented to the Italian judiciary, was how to stop Mignini’s witch hunt of innocent citizens, without also discrediting the “˜satanic sect’ convictions of Vanni and Lotti in the Monster of Florence cases.

    The task of acting as a kind of judicial baby-sitter to Mignini, fell to Judge Paolo Micheli [who] presided over Rudy Guede’s fast track trial in 2008 ““ which was also the pre-trial hearing against Amanda Knox and Raffaelle Sollecito, to certify the case against them as warranting a full trial. The challenge for Judge Micheli, was to walk Mignini back from the edge, but without so completely devastating Mignini’s reputation, that the public might begin to question the validity of the satanic sect theory which had been used in the convictions in the Monster of Florence murders.

    This is 180 degrees wrong. Judge Micheli is believed to have been leaned on but ultimately the courts at all levels came round to confirming that Dr Mignini had no choice but to act and he acted quite right. The notion of a satanic sect goes way back and Dr Mignini was more doubtful about it than most.

    Judge Micheli’s ruling was scathingly overturned by Cassation, and some of the cases against malicious meddlers were resumed. Spezi has been in court after court - just a couple of weeks ago, he lost yet another defamation case brought by Michele Giuttari.

    But Judge Micheli allowed Mignini’s case against Knox and Sollecito to go forward to trial. Had Judge Micheli simply done his job, properly heard and investigated Mignini’s case, the only fair outcome would be full dismissal. What Mignini has pulled off is a kind of blackmail. Mignini wanted his promotion at all costs, and was willing to convict and imprison dozens of innocent people to get his way. Amanda and Raffaele are only two of Mignini’s more recent victims, but there are scores of damaged lives left behind in the wake of Mignini’s lust for career advancement.

    The crackpot Jay has defamed American prosecutors too? Probably not. Typical of the cowardly Mellas-Fischer gang he writes in English in the United States in a language and from a distance which makes him feel safe. Dr Mignini has zero record of overzealous or wrongful prosecution, and very, very few cases reversed on appeal, and nobody at all in Italy would buy this defamatory crap.

    After Michelli dismissed the case against the Florence 20 in 2010, Judge Hellman’s appeal court fully acquitted Amanda Knox and Raffaelle Sollecito for any involvement if the murder of Meredith Kercher in October of 2011.

    Hello?! Hellman’s verdict was ANNULED for terrible law, and for illegally trying to repeat the complete trial (absent the witnesses, who he ridiculed) instead of sticking to the few points that had been appealed. Cassation annuls very, very few cases, and reversing this corrupted overstretch was universally seen in Italian law circles as right.

    Extraordinarily, Judge Micheli waited over one year to release his motivation report, only doing so about two months after the Hellman court released its motivation report in favor of acquittal. Motivation reports in Italy, are normally due in 90 days. I believe Judge Micheli’s delay in releasing his motivation report, was to allow him the opportunity to conform his report to that of Judge Hellman.

    Good grief. What is the crackpot Jay on about here? Judge Micheli was leaned on, and he knew he had got the law wrong, and he presumably expected to be overturned - which Cassation very scathingly did. No wonder his homework was not handed in on time; he feared losing his job and serving time.

    The Narducci trail case of the Florence 20, was sent back down absent the element of criminal conspiracy among the defendants. In essence, the case was rigged for dismissal, a fact confirmed by Michele Giutarri in a magazine interview earlier this year. Whereas the case against Ms Knox and Mr Sollecito was rigged for conviction.

    A previous cassation ruling against Rudy Guede in his fast track process where Guede’s defense waived the right to challenge the evidence, determined that Guede had killed Meredith along with others. Cassation ruled that Knox and Sollecito’s trials should be bound by that finding, which is grossly and patently unfair.

    There was nothing unfair. This is a foolish meme. Cassation simply ruled that two others had been involved and that had been proved. It was proved in the 1/4 of the trial that was held behind closed doors where two recreations connected all the dots of the vicious 15-minute taunting attack on Meredith. Both defenses without argument accepted this.

    As irrational as the cassation ruling overturning the Hellman acquittal may seem, there may be a deeper reason behind it. In an article from CBS news earlier this year, Doug Longhini writes: “Following the verdict, judge Hellmann didn’t pull punches.  He declared: “the evidence was nonsense.”  Suddenly, several prosecutors and judges became the targets of criticism claiming they had mishandled the case from the beginning.” ...

    For his part, Berlusconi and his party were at war with Italy’s prosecutors and judges.  The Prime Minister was trying to reign in their investigative powers.  Prosecutors, for their part, were trying to put Berlusconi in jail.”  Seen in this light, the court of cassation reversing the acquittal of judge Hellman is not an act of judicial wisdom, but one of self preservation. To avert a political investigation among their own members, Italy’s court of cassation had to reverse Judge Hellman’s acquittal.

    The addled Doug Longhini is consistently out to lunch both on the excellent Italian system and the Perugia case as have been the entire CBS team - no wonder they have said very little for several years.

    The courts at all points have simply done the right thing and public opinion has been very solidly behind them. Almost every Italian knows that RS and AK carried out the attack. The courts are not in self-preservation and charges against the toothless Berlusconi still stand.

    One can sense the political pendulum swinging first in favor of conviction, then back towards acquittal, then back again towards conviction. And events that unfolded just this year, cause me to believe that the Italian judicial-political pendulum is once again swinging back in favor of acquittal. Giuliano Mignini has received his promotion. In his new role, he will never again prosecute a case or lead an investigation, he is only allowed to sit with other judges on appeals courts. So the judiciary can be confidant there will be no more Mignini led witch hunts.

    Only recently in the past few weeks, the last of the criminal charges against Mignini have been allowed to languish, due to statute of limitations. So Mignini is out of legal jeopardy.  Despite the fact that the only trial on the merits resulted in a conviction and jail sentences for both Mignini and Giutarri, neither will be going to jail, or being held accountable for the crimes they were found to have committed at their first level trial. In the end, it may be said that the Italian judiciary found it easier to promote Mignini, then to jail him

    More babble. Dr Mignini was NEVER in legal jeopardy as everyone in Perugia knew - a judge had signed the wiretap of the prosecutor who unwittingly confirmed a Florence cabal and Dr Mignini and his boss and all his colleagues KNEW he would overturn the spurious conviction on appeal.

    Dr Mignini did overturn the verdict in Florence on appeal - the appeal judge’s ruling was the hardest-line “there is no case” - and as with ex-Judge Hellmann, both the rogue prosecutor and the rogue trial judge are now out.

    Dr Mignini commendably kept pushing back and he won and won and won against the malicious meddlers in the MOF case. On 3 December the great reporter Andrea Vogt posted this:

    Those following the side trials that have spun off or become entangled in the Amanda Knox trial might be interested to know that the now infamous and often-cited abuse of office investigation against Perugia prosecutor Giuliano Mignini, which once made such big headlines in the U.S. and UK media, has officially resulted in no charges, and the investigation has been closed.

    An initial conviction stemming from 2006 wiretaps and the Monster of Florence investigation was overturned and annulled in Florence on appeal [in 2011]. The court ordered that the case be transferred to Turin for any future investigation. Earlier this year he was acquitted of nearly all the accusations.  The Turin court on Tuesday chose to shelve the last remaining question regarding the wiretapping of a La Stampa journalist earlier this week, ruling it was time barred.

    The court’s ruling finally settles the long debated question of Mignini’s record: He has no abuse of office conviction, and there is no longer any active investigation into such allegations.

    The other protagonist, Mario Spezi, on the other hand, still has quite a few problems on his hands. His 2006 arrest eventually resulted in the high court (cassation) ruling No. 865/2013 deeming that the following crimes occurred: aggravated interfering with public investigation from Febuary 2004 to summer 2006, aggravated attempted judicial fraud between February and May 2004 and aggravated slander and defamation for naming Antonio Vinci as linked to the Monster of Florence homicides in 2006.

    For this last charge, Spezi could be held liable in civil court. But he will never be sentenced for any of these crimes, because after the cassation sent it back down for trial at the appeal level, the appeals court in Perugia shelved the case, ruling that the statute of limitations had passed for any further prosecution. And once again, true justice grinds to a halt, caught up in the gears of Italy’s slow and messy system.

    In the meantime, Spezi’s faulty thesis on the Monster of Florence case has landed him in court in several other jurisdictions, where ex-Florence homicide cop Michele Giuttari has been pressing forward with slander and defamation charges related to accusations made about him in his now discredited Monster of Florence yarn that Spezi and his American co-author, Douglas Preston made into a bestseller, pinning the blame on an innocent man in the process. [Bold added here]

    And so the plot thickens.  Giuliano Mignini was made into a convenient media villain when a high-profile American was being tried across the courtroom from him . . . on trumped up allegations that have since fallen unceremoniously to the wayside. Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, who Mignini initially prosecuted, await the decision of their final appeal before the court of cassation in March 2015.

    Back to analysing more from the crackpot Jay.

    In short and to sum things up: Mignini has gotten his promotion which he valued above the liberty of the innocent; Mignini’s Narducci Trail investigations are over for good; the Monster of Florence convictions against Vanni and Lotti claiming their participation in a non-existent satanic sect are safely in the past; and the war between the Italian judiciary and Burlesconi is in a state of a truce.

    For all of these reasons, I believe the pendulum of Italian politics has again swung in the direction of acquittal, and the Italian judiciary is once again in a position to finally recognize, and exonerate, Amanda Knox and Raffaelle Sollecito.

    It may be a good idea for the crackpot Jay to not hold his breath on this. Cassation and the Florence appeal court have been the most hardline on this. And it was Judge Matteini with the police not Dr Mignini who drove the case forward in 2007 and 2008. As explained above, Dr Mignini had almost no guiding hand, and on 17 December 2007 gave Knox a real break. A shot to get herself off - which she herself tanked.

    Prior to that long conversation with Knox on 17 December at her request, where Dr Mignini played eminently fair and she had to be stopped as she was incriminating herself, they had barely spoken any words. Once briefly at the house on the day of the crime, once briefly when Knox was shown the knives, and once briefly when Dr Mignini presided over the reading of her rights on 6 Nov. That was it. From the post directly below, see also this:

    In a move serially misinterpreted by the dimwits of the Knox brigade, the prosecution, suspecting she was both mixed up and high on hard drugs, in effect offered Knox and her team a way to a lesser count, when they said that the murder could have been a taunting attack which spun out of control.

    As explained near the top here, from 7 November it was Judge Matteini and Judge Ricciarelli, not Dr Mignini, in the saddle, and they got all of their information directly from the police. Prior to the Guede and Knox/Sollecito trials Dr Mignini did not guide the process, impossible though that seems for the Mellas/Fischer crackpots to believe.

    These facts, and in conjunction with the ECHR soon to take up the conviction of Ms. Knox for Calumnia in the European Court of Human Rights, provides the Italian Court of Cassation, in March of 2015 when they hear the appeal from conviction of Knox and Sollecito, with the opportunity and incentive to quietly discharge the case, and reinstate the verdict of Judge Hellman, finding that Knox and Sollecito are innocent of any involvement in the murder of Meredith Kercher, and innocent of the crime of “˜staging a crime scene’ because the crime does not exist.

    Reinstate Judge Hellmann?! He is being investigated for his suspect role in bending the 2011 appeal right now! Again, it may be a good idea for the crackpot Jay to not hold his breath on this.

    The appeal to the ECHR in Strasbourg is dead in the water because Knox herself made up all the claims of the supposed violations of her human rights. She has ZERO case. Read this series here.

    By the way, for his wild defamations and his contempt of court, Crackpot Jay opens himself to the exact-same charges Knox and Sollecito and Knox’s parents and Sforza all still face.


    Tuesday, December 16, 2014

    The Knox Interrogation Hoax #17: Sollecito April 2008 Before Supreme Court Again Coldsholdered Knox

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Media outside the Cassation back entrance waiting for news of the ruling

    1. Where This Series Stands

    Dozens of people have very aggressively gone to bat for Knox over her “interrogation” and still do.

    They trust that one or other of her versions of the 5-6 November 2007 police-station session is right.

    We have been demonstrating the rock-solid evidence that Knox and her supporters have lied and lied and there will be more evidence of this to come.

    We’ve shown in this series that Knox insisted on being there; she was merely helping to build a list; she was treated kindly and taken for refreshments; she was the only one overheard by anyone to raise her voice, when she screamed about Lumumba “He did it!”; it was Sollecito not the police saying that she had been lying and had made him lie; and there is documentary evidence that the police investigators who sat with Knox told the truth.

    Coming soon, we are going to post hundreds of very nasty claims by Knox shills, all sparked by and never reigned in by Knox.

    2. The Pre-Trial Hurdles Knox Failed

    Do you know how many major opportunities before her 2009 trial started Knox was given to get the murder charges dropped? This is not something Knox supporters trumpet about, if they even know.

    In fact there were six, and Knox dismally failed them all.

    In 2007 there were (1) the Matteini hearing and (2) the Ricciarelli hearing in November and (3) the Mignini interview in December.  And in 2008 there were (4) the separate Knox appeal and Sollecito appeal to the Supreme Court in April, and (5) the first Micheli hearings in September, and (6) the second Micheli hearings in October, which dispatched Knox and Sollecito for trial.

    In all six instances Knox’s team also had the opportunity to get the charges against Knox for calunnia against Lumumba dropped.

    3. Sollecito’s appeal to the Supreme Court

    In Knox Interrogation Hoax #16 we described the fourth pre-trial hurdle Knox failed to make. That was her appeal to the Supreme Court against the Matteini and Ricciarelli rulings that much evidence pointed to her and for the safety of others she needed to be kept locked up.

    Knox hadnt really lifted a finger to deflect suspicion away from Sollecito and the same thing applied in reverse from 2007 right through to 2014 with the one bizarre exception of Sollecito’s book.

    Catnip kindly provided this translation below of Cassation’s ruling on Sollecito’s appeal in April 2008 that much evidence pointed to him too and for the safety of others he also needed to be kept locked up.

    If Sollecito had not fingered Knox at his own interrogation on 5-6 November 2007 which set her fireworks off, here was his second chance after his memo to Judge Matteini to set things straight and get her off the hook. 

    So did he? No. He again left Knox dangling in the wind. 

    Summary: Held: the decision to continue pre-trial prison detention for the suspect was reasonable.

    THE REPUBLIC OF ITALY
    IN THE NAME OF THE ITALIAN PEOPLE
    THE SUPREME COURT OF CASSATION
    SECTION 1 CRIMINAL DIVISION

    Comprised of the most Honourable Justices:
    Dr Torquato GEMELLI - President -
    Dr Emilio Giovanni GIRONI - Member -
    Dr Maria Cristina SIOTTO - Member -
    Dr Umberto ZAMPETTI - Member -
    Dr Margherita CASSANO - Member -

    have pronounced the following

    JUDGMENT

    on the appeal lodged by:

    (1) RS, born on X, against Order of 30/11/2007 Liberty Court of Perugia;

    having heard the relation made by Member Emilio Giovanni Gironi;

    having heard the conclusions of the Prosecutor-General Dr Consolo for its rejection;

    having heard the defence advocates G and T (substituting for advocate M).

    REASONS FOR THE DECISION

    The order referred to in opening confirmed, at the Re-examination stage, the one by which the GIP [the Preliminary Investigation Magistrate] had applied pre-trial prison detention of RS for participation in the murder of MSCK, the which occurring in Perugia on the evening of the 1st of November 2007 by means of a cutting weapon, in an alleged context of sexual assault by a group, in which there would have taken part, in addition to S, his girlfriend AK and a RHG, who had left behind a palm print on the bloodied pillow on which the victim’s body was resting and whose DNA was found on the vaginal swab taken from the body of the same and on faecal traces found in a bathroom of the house that the victim was sharing with Ms AK and two Italian students.

    The picture of circumstantial evidence specifically concerning S consists of the identification of a print left in haematic material present at the scene of the crime of a sports shoe held to be compatible, because its dimensions and configuration of the sole, with the type of footwear, “N” brand size 42.5, used by the suspect; of the recovery ““ in the kitchen of his house ““ of a kitchen knife bearing traces of Ms AK’s DNA on the handle and on the blade traces of Ms MK’s DNA; and of the collapse of the alibi put up by the young man (having been disproven by technical investigations carried out), in which, as asserted by him, he had interacted with his computer during the hours in which, according to the forensic pathologist’s reconstruction, the criminal fact would have occurred, that is between 22:00 and 23:00 of the 1st November 2007; from the investigations carried out up until now it would appear, in fact, that the last interaction with the machine on 1 November occurred at 21:10 and that the subsequent one took place at 5:32 the day after, when S also reactivated his mobile phone, acts witnessing thereby an agitated and sleepless night. Equally disproven was that the young man had received a phone call from his father at 23:00 on the night of the murder, it resulting, instead, that said call had happened at 20:40.

    Against S, caught at the time of arrest with a switchblade initially considered compatible with the wounds found on the neck of the victim, would line up, in addition, the mutability of the stories given to the investigators by the same and by his girlfriend, having initially maintained they had remained the whole evening and night in the young man’s house, later to state, instead, that at a certain point Ms AK would have left to meet the Ivorian [sic] citizen PDL, manager of a pub in which Ms AK was undertaking casual employment, she making a returning to her boyfriend’s house only around one in the morning.

    It must, finally, be added that the same Ms AK had, amongst other things, initially referred (not confirming, in any case, the thesis in confused and contradictory subsequent versions) to having taken herself to her own house with L, where this latter (he also was struck with a custody order, later revoked after the previously mentioned identification of G’s DNA) had had sexual relations with Ms MK, and to having, while she herself was in the kitchen, heard her friend scream, without, further, remembering anything else of the subsequent events, up until the occurrences of the day after, marked by the discovery of traces of blood in the small bathroom next to Ms MK’s room and culminating in the discovery of the body, after the intervention of the forces of law and order (the police appear, in particular, to have intervened prior to the call to 112 effected by S); in particular, the young woman was specifically pointing out not being able to remember whether S were also present in the victim’s house on the occasion of the events just described.

    The Re-examination Court concluded recognizing, for the purposes of maintaining pre-trial detention, the persistence of all the types of pre-trial exigencies mentioned by Article 274 Criminal Procedure Code.

    The S defence has indicated an appeal, on the grounds of, with new reasons as well:

    ““ reference to Ms AK alone of the circumstantial evidence constituted by the presence of biological traces from her and from the victim on the knife found at S’s house;

    ““ absence, at the scene of the crime, of biological traces attributable to the suspect [ndr: note, this was before the bra-clasp tests had been done];

    ““ arbitrary transference onto S of the weighty circumstantial evidence against Ms AK, on the unfounded assumption that the pair could not have been anything but together at the moment of the homicidal fact;

    ““ inexistent evidential value of the phases relative to the discovery of the body;

    ““ absence of blood traces from the soles of the “N” shoes worn by the suspect even at the moment of his arrest;

    ““ absence of any evidential value of merit, alleged failure of the alibi, constituting the use of his computer, of which the falsity has not in any case been ascertained, of the lack of interaction by the subject with the machine after the last operation at 21:10 not permitting the inference that the computer was not, however, engaged in downloading files (being, to be specific, films);

    ““ irrelevancy of the mistake revealed between the indicated time of the phone call to the father furnished by S and the actual time of the call, given the uncertainty of the time of death of the victim, depending on the time, otherwise uncertain, of the consumption of the dinner (according to various witness statements coinciding with 18:00), it being well able, therefore, for the time indicated by the forensic pathologist (23:00) to be revised backwards to 21:00, a little before which time the witness P had referred to having made a visit to S, finding him at home and not on the verge of going out;

    ““ interpretability of the so-called unlikelihood of the versions supplied by the suspect as attempts to cover for (aid and abet) another subject;

    ““ attribution of the victim’s biological traces found on the knife seized at S’s house to chance contamination not related to the homicidal fact;

    ““ insufficiency of the pre-trial exigencies, having diminished in a probative sense after the return to Italy of G; those relating to risk of flight lacking in specificity and concreteness; and with reference to the conventional content of blogs posted on the internet by the suspect, those relating to danger to society illogically reasoned;

    ““ missing appearance of the young man’s walk, via security cameras installed along the route that the aforesaid would have had to traverse to go from his house to that of the victim’s.

    THE APPEAL IS UNFOUNDED

    As regards what this Court is permitted to appreciate, not being able here to proceed with a re-reading of the investigative results nor with an alternative interpretation of the factual data referred to in the custody order, the appellant defence substantially contests the recognition, as against S, of the necessary requisite of grave indicia of culpability. The question thus posed and submitted for scrutiny by this bench of the well-known limits of the competence of the court of merit, it must be held that the finding expressed by the Re-examination judges concerning the gravity of the frame of circumstantial evidence is not susceptible to censure.

    Not upheld, in the first place, is the defence submission according to which the knife bearing the genetic prints of Ms AK and of Ms MK found in S’s house would constitute a piece of evidence relevant solely as against the young woman, even if privy of traces attributable to the suspect, the utensil has as always been found in the young man’s house, and the testimony acquired up until now has led to the exclusion that it formed part of the inventory of the house inhabited by the victim, and which, at the time, and until proved to the contrary, must be held to be the same available for use by the suspect and which had been used in MK’s house, there being contested no access by her to S’s house.

    Given the multitude of group contributive possibilities, the fact is not significative, then, in itself being a neutral element, that on the scene of the crime there are no biological traces attributable to S, to which, in any case, is attributable the “N” brand shoe print considered compatible, by dimensions and sole configuration, with the footwear worn by the suspect at the time of arrest. Although having the same impugned order excluded, at the time, the certainty of the identification constitutes as, in any case, a certain datum that the print in question had been made in haematic material found in Ms MK’s room by a shoe of the kind and of the dimensions of those possessed by the appellant, while it remains to be excluded that this could have originated from G’s shoe, who wore a size 45 and, therefore, dimensions notably larger. The revealed coincidence, notwithstanding the residual uncertainty on the identification, assumes particular valency in relation to the restricted circle of subjects gravitating to the scene of the homicide, with not even Ms AK, who made admissions about her presence on site at the same time as the execution of the offence, excluding the presence of her boyfriend in the victim’s house in the same circumstance; nor can it be held that the print could have been left by S the following morning, he never having claimed to have entered into the room wherein the body was lying.

    It does not answer, therefore, to verity that, as against the young man, there had been recognized, by a phenomenon of transference, items of circumstantial evidence in reality pointing solely to Ms AK.

    The last finding held unfavourable to S is constituted by the failed proof of the alibi constituted by the argument of the suspect as having remained at home on the computer until late at night; it being a matter of, properly speaking, an alibi failing up till now and not of a false alibi and the defence, correctly, does not refute the technico-judicial valency of the circumstantial evidence, but it remains, in any case, acquired into the case file that the accused had not been able to prove his absence from the locus of the crime at the same time. An item up until now assumed as certain is, instead, the fact that S had interacted with his computer at 5:32 the morning following the murder, at around the same time reactivating his own mobile phone, a contradiction of the assumption of a waking up only at 10:00 and a symptomatic tell-tale of a more or less sleepless night; likewise as symptomatic was held to be the nearly simultaneous cessation of telephonic traffic as much by Ms AK, in his company the evening of 1 November 2007.

    The proof of a permanent stay in his house by the suspect can, all told, be considered as acquired up until 20:40 ““ coincident with P’s visit ““ who confirmed his presence, or up until 21:10, the last interaction time on the computer, but this does not cover the time of the homicide, located between 22:00 and 23:00.

    As for the proposed argument that S’s conduct were interpreted as aiding and abetting, this does not result, in the event, as being supported by anything emerging from the investigations and its plausibility cannot be verified by the judges of merit.

    In conclusion, the Re-examination Court’s evaluation as to the gravity of the circumstantial evidence picture are removed from the audit of this court.

    There remains, finally, the finding that for what concerns the pre-trial exigencies, those of a probative nature are not able to be considered as ceasing from the sole fact of G’s re-entry into Italy (amongst other things significantly never invoked in the statements by the suspect and by his girlfriend, who instead co-involved L in the proceedings), given the existence of an investigative picture in continual evolution, in which the positions of the various protagonists so far remain unclear, the changing versions of which are marked by reticence and mendaciousness (the same suspect had, in truth, admitted to having, at least initially, told “˜a load of balls’); but the permanence of pre-trial exigencies had been held reasonablely even under the aspect of flight risk, in relation to the gravity of the charges and of the potential sanctions, not to mention danger to society, given the revealed fragility of character and the specific personal traits of the subject, ““ which would narrowly evaluate as innocuous youthful stereotypes ““, in a context the more connoted by the noted habitual use of drugs.

    FOR THESE REASONS

    Rejects the appeal and sentences the appellant to payment of costs of the proceedings. Article 94 para 1 ter, and activating provisions, Criminal Procedure Code, applies.
    Rome, 1.4.2008.

    DEPOSITED IN THE REGISTRY ON 21 APRIL 2008


    Friday, December 12, 2014

    Why All The Desperate Attempts To Prove Rudy Guede Was A Burglar Have Fallen Flat

    Posted by Peter Quennell




    1. The Knox-Sollecito State Of Play

    On average we get an email or two from readers in Italy every day.

    Maybe half are from Italians and half are from foreigners who are resident there. This is from an appreciative American who is married to an Italian and now lives in Milan.

    I go back to Perugia and my friends there as often as I can - everything there is very special to me. Perhaps this sounds a little strange but, to me, the city seems to have lost it’s innocence with Meredith’s murder. I still haven’t met anybody in Italy - from North to South (or from Switzerland either) who believes that Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito are innocent.

    No-one in Italy any longer seems to believe that AK and RS or of course Guede were not involved. The courts have made their case.

    There has simply been too much documentation, too much commentary broadcast on TV, too many disturbing facts coming to light like Knox having sex for drugs with a drug kingpin right up to the night of her arrest.

    The incessant bickering of the two has become a bore. Trials against Sforza, Aviello, and Sollecito proceed and more charges against Amanda Knox and Curt and Edda Mellas remain.  Since this time last year neither of the two has won even one point.

    2. More Proof Undermines The Guede Hoax

    Can you figure out what the image at the top depicts?

    This is the north end of the massif from the east. Right at the center is the law office of Dr Paolo Brocchi, whose office was burgled and whose laptop turned up in the possession of Rudy Guede in Milan. Meredith’s house is visible at top-right and Patrick’s bar, the English girl’s house and the courts are all off to the left.

    At the bottom of the image below in the center is a narrow dark ally. Whoever broke in seems to have done so via that ally and a narrow balcony on the second floor of the law offices. 






    The killer-groupies refer to Rudy Guede as the FORGOTTEN killer though there is no logical reason why. He doesnt hog the limelight but he is convicted and he is doing his time.

    The killer-groupies claim Guede was a drug dealer (untrue), a petty thief (unproven), a knife wielder (untrue), who threatened a man (untrue), a police snitch (untrue) who killed Meredith alone during a burglary which went wrong (untrue). Quite a list of false claims. 

    There is in fact zero evidence proving Guede acted alone. Meredith’s missing money was equivalent to money Knox could not explain.  Read the 45 posts here for all the proof the killer-groupies ignore.

    Absolutely key to the verdict of the trial court were the TWO recreations of the attack on Meredith. Each pointed to three attackers. Both were presented in closed court. 

    Please follow the images below to see how a burglar broke into Dr Brocchi’s office two and a half weeks before Meredith was killed.

    The front door of the law office is at street level. Because the ground slopes down at the rear, the law office is one level above ground level. That is where the glass in the French doors was broken and the break-in may have occurred. 




    Above and below: images of law office at the street level from the front,






    Whether it was Guede or not (there are good reasons for thinking it was not) he or she broke in around the back, up that alley, in the dark, where there is a quite easy reach up to the floor of a narrow balcony outside the French doors.



    Above and below, law office from back, balcony is at hard left not visible here





    Above and below, law office from back, balcony is visible one floor up from ground level





    Above law office from back, balcony is visible one floor up from ground level



    What does that climb resemble? See the final image below. It fairly precisely resembles the climb in the dark onto Meredith’s balcony, also at the back, a route which two separate sets of burglars used in 2009.

    It does NOT resemble at all the climb into Filomena’s room, much higher, in bright light, which to this day not one person has been able to emulate, and which would actually resemble a climb to the office windows at the front in bright streetlight . 

    Those who claim that climbing into Filomena’s window was anyone’s known “modus operandi” are not telling the truth.




    Above, Meredith’s house from the east with balcony used by burglars at the back


    There were no fingerprints in the office and to this day nobody can say for certain what the burglary was really about.

    Only that certain legal papers had been accessed and it is held probable in Perugia that someone was trying to interfere with a legal case. Two other offices at the back were bypassed. 

    Neither Dr Brocchi nor Ms Maria Del Prato who encountered Guede in her nursery school in Milan pressed charges against him for assault or theft. Their testimonies at trial were low-key and puzzling but certainly did not leave Guede in a worse light. Neither had an axe to grind with him.

    So the Milan police and courts finally acted against Guede merely for being in possession of a couple of items of stolen property. Nothing more.

    If Guede had no already been convicted he would have served no prison time.

    But as we recently reported he gets an additional 16 months in prison and his work-release is denied.  Guede’s final appeal to Cassation has just been turned down.

    The killer-groupies should move along. Demonizing Guede with false claims and lying to justice departments (their new angle) will never ensure Knox remains free.


    Saturday, November 29, 2014

    The PMF/TJMK Master Evidence List: First Of Our Projects To Make The Final Picture Whole

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    High-achiever Meredith Kercher was born less than one mile south of this famous London landmark

    Building An Evidence Mountain

    There are really three pictures, not just the one, still to be fully made whole.

    • That of Meredith. We believe a family site will soon add to the fine book published by Meredith’s dad.

    • That of all of the evidence the court acquired in 2009, which is the sole picture the Italian citizenry takes seriously.

    • That of the misleading campaign by the Knox and Sollecito PR shills, leaving some in the UK and US misled.

    The Master Evidence List is a key part of the second picture and there are several other media-friendly pages still to come.

    Click here for the rest


    Tuesday, November 18, 2014

    The Knox Interrogation Hoax #16: The Fourth Opportunity Knox Flunked: The Supreme Court

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Media outside the Cassation back entrance waiting for news of the ruling

    1. Where This Series Stands

    Dozens of people have very aggressively gone to bat for Knox over her “interrogation” and still do.

    They trust that one or other of her versions of the 5-6 November 2007 police-station session is right.

    We have been demonstrating the rock-solid evidence that Knox and her supporters have lied and lied and there will be more evidence of this to come.

    We’ve shown in this series that Knox insisted on being there; she was merely helping to build a list; she was treated kindly and taken for refreshments; she was the only one overheard by anyone to raise her voice, when she screamed about Lumumba “He did it!”; it was Sollecito not the police saying that she had been lying and had made him lie; and there is documentary evidence that the police investigators who sat with Knox told the truth.

    Coming soon, we are going to post hundreds of false claims made by Knox shills, all sparked by and never reigned in by Knox.

    2. The Pre-Trial Hurdles Knox Failed

    Do you know how many major opportunities before her 2009 trial started Knox was given to get the murder charges dropped? This is not something Knox supporters trumpet about, if they even know.

    In fact there were six, and Knox dismally failed them all.

    In 2007 there were (1) the Matteini hearing and (2) the Ricciarelli hearing in November and (3) the Mignini interview in December.  And in 2008 there were (4) the separate Knox appeal and Sollecito appeal to the Supreme Court in April, and (5) the first Micheli hearings in September, and (6) the second Micheli hearings in October, which dispatched Knox and Sollecito for trial.

    In all six instances Knox’s team also had the opportunity to get the charges against Knox for calunnia against Lumumba dropped.

    As you will have seen in previous posts, Knox’s team pussyfooted about without conviction in the few brief instances when the 5-6 November session was discussed. In the Mignini hearing of 17 December 2007 they eventually advised her it would be in her best interests to shut up.

    This post covers the third hurdle, specifically why in April 2008 the First Criminal Section of the Supreme Court ruled that for reasons of evidence and psychology Knox and Sollecito should remain locked up and the judicial process against them should go forward.

    Please consider this meticulous (and for the pair, damning) statement, which denied their release, in light of a couple of explanations which follow in Part 4 below.

    3. Catnip Translation: Gemelli Report On Knox

    The Judgment

    REPUBLIC OF ITALY
    IN THE NAME OF THE ITALIAN PEOPLE
    THE SUPREME COURT OF CASSATION
    FIRST CRIMINAL DIVISION

    Comprised of the Most Honorable Justices
    Dr Torquato GEMELLI ““ President
    Dr Emilio Giovanni GIRONI ““ Member
    Dr Maria Cristina SIOTTO ““ Member
    Dr Umberto Zampetti ““ Member
    Dr Margherita CASSANO ““ Member

    has pronounced the following

    JUDGMENT

    on the appeal lodged by AMK born on X

    against the Order of 30/11/2007 Liberty Tribunal of Perugia

    having heard the relation [legal analysis] made by the Counsellor [Judge] Margherita Cassano

    having heard the conclusions of the Prosecutor-General Dr S Consolo who has prayed the rejection of the appeal

    HAVING FOUND IN FACT

    1. With the order of 30 November 2007 the Perugia Court, as constituted under Article 309 Criminal Procedure Code, rejected the submission to review lodged by AMK and, as a consequence, confirmed the precautionary prison custody measures disposed in her matter on the 9th November 2007 by the GIP of the same Court in relation to the offences of aggravated wilful homicide in company and in sexual assault by a group, committed on the day of 1 November 2007 against MSCK.

    2. According to the reconstruction put forward by the judges of merit, on the 2nd November 2007, around 12:35, the State Police, to whom had been signalled the discovery in the garden of a house of two mobile phones, both resulting to be in the service of the American [sic] citizen MSCK, intervened at an apartment in Via della Pergola in use by Ms K and AMK and two Italian women. At the place were found AMK and her boyfriend RS, the which declared they were expecting the arrival of the Carabinieri, called by them after having discovered that the window of one of the rooms of the habitation presented with broken glass.

    The crime scene inspection immediately carried out inside the apartment led to the discovery in the bedroom occupied by Ms K, locked under key, of the body of the woman, which, at the level of the head, was immersed in a lake of blood, was dressed only in two tops pulled above the breast and was covered with a blanket. Beneath this latter was found the print of a shoe in haematic material, collected, besides in the room of the offence, also in a small bathroom adjacent to the same. In a second bathroom, used by the two Italian lessees of the apartment, were found faeces and other natural biological residues. The autopsy immediately carried out permitted the establishment of the cause of death, collocatable around 22 hours of the day of 1st November 2007, to have been due to a haemorrhagic shock from vascular lesions to the neck from an edged blade and that the instrument used to restrain her was constituted of a pointed instrument capable of penetration and with a sharpened profile capable of cutting tissue.

    The victim’s body did not present unequivocal signs of sexual assault even though there were found things of some medico-legal interest, in the sense of the observed anal dilation of two-three centimetres, the discovery of minute ecchimoses on the posterior part of the anal ring (otherwise compatible with situations of constipation) and, above all, mauvish marks on the inner face of the labia minore, suggestive of a sexual rapport carried out with haste and occurring a little before the death.

    3. The Court had found that grave indicia of guilt as against the suspect were constituted by the following elements:

    (a) the autopsy results and the medico-legal report;

    (b) the discovery of a knife with dimensions of 14cm for the handle and of about 17 for the blade, seized from inside a drawer of cutlery located in the kitchen of the home of S, carrying, on the handle, traces of DNA referable to Ms K and, on the blade, traces of DNA ascribable to the victim;

    (c) statements made by persons informed of the facts, FR and LM, housemates of the victim, who without contradiction excluded that the seized knife were part of the their apartment’s endowment and made mention that Ms K, on the day of the fact, was wearing a top, which has not yet been found;

    (d) outcome of the technical tests carried out on a pair of shoes, N brand, size 42.5, property of S, evidencing a perfect correspondence between the aforesaid footwear and the print found at the location of the homicide, as well as on the door of the Via della P apartment which did not present signs of forced entry;

    (e) results of technical tests carried out on the palm print found on the pillow on which the victim had been placed and resulting as belonging to RHG, a citizen of the Ivory Coast, nicknamed “˜the Baron’, known to AMK;

    (f) presence of RHG’s DNA on the vaginal swab taken from the cadaver during the autopsy and on the fragment of toilet paper taken from inside the larger bathroom of the apartment, where faeces had been found, resulting as being from G;

    (g) outcome of biological tests carried out on the blood found in the apartment’s small bathroom, in use by the victim and Ms K, which permitted the establishment that to the victim were attributable the bloodstains present on the mat, to Ms K those found on the washbasin, and to both of the women the blood traces found on the bidet;

    (h) statements made by the American [sic] citizen RCB, the which, having returned home to her country a few days after the fact, referred to the Authorities that Ms K, while waiting to be interviewed by the Police on the morning of the 2nd November 2007, had told her of having seen M’s body on a wardrobe (or reflected on a wardrobe) with a blanket on top of her and of having seen her friend’s foot after a police officer had opened the door, circumstances conflicting with the modality of intervention at the apartment;

    (i) statements made by the friends of MSCK, the which without contradiction said that the woman had spent the afternoon of the 1st November 2007 in their company and had left their house in the company of SP, who, reaching her own domicile in Via del L around 20:55, had parted from the victim, whose apartment in Via della P was less than 10 minutes’ distance from Via del L;

    (l) statements made by FR and PG, contacted by A after ascertaining that the front door of their house was open, that there were blood stains and that the window of MSCK’s room presented with broken glass

    (m) statements made by S on the 2nd, 5th and 6th November regarding his movements both alone and with AMK between the day of 1 November 2007 and the following 2 November, in regards to what was found inside the Via della P apartment, to the call for help to law enforcement, not to mention the reference to the search for strong emotion contained in various of his writings posted on his blog;

    (n) statements made on 6 November 2007 at 1:45 by Ms K which indicated L, entranced by M, as the author of the murder after a sexual relation with the victim;

    (o) spontaneous statements made by Ms K on 6 November 2007 at 5:45 from which it emerged that L and M had gone to her room, that, at a certain point, M had started to scream, such that A, so as not to hear, had put her hands on her ears, that maybe S was also present in the house;

    (p) contents of the account written by Ms K which repeated having heard M scream, to having removed herself into the kitchen and of having blocked her ears with her hands so as not to hear her friend’s scream and of having seen blood on S’s hand during the dinner that had taken place around 23:00 hours on the day of 1 November 2007 in S’s apartment;

    (q) contents of a recorded conversation in prison on 17 November 2007 relating to a discussion between Ms K and her parents in the course of which the woman, amongst other things, said “It’s stupid, because I can’t say anything different, I was there and I can’t lie about this, there is no reason to do it”;

    (r) tests carried out on the computer and on the mobile phone used by S, from which it emerged that, contrary to the defensive stance of the suspect, his computer had not been used during the night and had been activated only at 5:32 on 2 November 2007 and that, likewise, his mobile phone also had been off during the night and had been first used at dawn on 2 November 2007.

    The Re-examination judges concluded recognizing, for continuing the precautionary custody measure, the continuance of all the typologies of precautionary requirements mentioned under Article 274 Criminal Procedure Code.

    4. Against the cited order there has been submitted an appeal to Cassation, through her lawyers, by AMK, the which, also by means of a defence memorandum, alleges:

    (a) violation of Article 309 paragraph five Criminal Procedure Code with reference to the omitted transmission to the Re-examination Court of the statements made by the suspect RHG arrested in Germany in the execution of a European Arrest Warrant, constituting, contrary to what was adopted by the Re-examination Court, an element favourable to the suspect, relevant for the indication of the author of the offence, identified as an individual of the male gender and, contrary to what as held by the Court, fully usable, given the basis of their acquisition into evidence under Articles 22 and 28 of the law on international judicial representation in criminal matters of 23 December 1982;

    (b) Violation of Article 250 paragraph seven, and 357 paragraph two, Criminal Procedure Code, being placed at the foundation of the custody order and of the subsequent provisioning by the Re-examination Court, which indicative elements, the statements made by Ms K on 6 November at 1:45, without defence safeguards, the “spontaneous statements” made at the time of 5:45 hours, are not classifiable as such, given the procedural status invested on her in the meantime, all acts fully non-usable inasmuch acquired in patent violation of Article 63 Criminal Procedure Code;

    (c) Violation of law, deficiency and manifest lack of logic in the reasoning with reference to the picture of circumstantial gravity, having regard: (a) to the personality of the suspect, a young foreigner with unblemished record, with a perception of reality altered by cannabis use, a substance which also may have been influencing her excessive and dreamlike behaviours; (b) to the seriously lacunose character of the translation of passages of the suspect’s hand-written account, analysed in a partial manner; (c) to the not unambiguous reading of the contents of the recorded conversation of 17 November 2007 between the suspect and her parents in prison; (d) to the non-probative nature of the DNA traces found on the seized knife, of the suspect’s blood stains on the mat and basin in the small bathroom of the apartment occupied by, amongst others, the victim and Ms K;

    (d) Lack and manifest illogicality in the reasoning with reference to the considered circumstantial value, as against the suspect, of the results of tests carried out on the vaginal swab and on the knife in custody, with an un-reasoned devaluation of the considerations put forward by the defence;

    (e) lack and manifest illogicality of the reasoning, distortion of the fact with reference to the considered presence of the suspect on the location of the fact and to her contribution purportedly made to the consummation of the offence;

    (f) violation of law, deficiency and illogicality of reasoning as to the configurability of the precautionary requirements, given: (1) the absence of a specific danger in evidentiary acquisition even in the light of investigative developments which have evidenced Ms K’s extraneity to the commission of the offence and have allowed the acquisition of statements by fellow-suspect G; (2) the lack of an objective risk of flight in the light of international cooperation between Italy and the USA which would permit, once the suspect’s responsibility has been definitively ascertained, full judicial cooperation; (3) the lack of danger of repetition of the offences.

    Observes as of law.
    The Appeal Is Unfounded.

    1. With reference to the deduced violation of Article 308 paragraph five for omitted transmission to the Re-examination Court of elements appearing favourable to the person placed under investigation (in the type of statements made by G to the German Judicial Authority in the ambit of European Arrest Warrant procedure), this Bench observes as follows.

    For “elements in favour of the person placed under investigation” must be understood to mean those objective results, of probative value, suitable for being of positive influence in the evaluative complex of the custody picture (Cass., Sez. IV, 22 giugno 2005, rv. 231749) and in the concrete usable for exculpating the suspect (Cass., Sez. I, 26 settembre 2000, Corrente, rv. 217611) and not information that resolves itself into mere reformulations of the prosecutorial hypothesis or in the advancing of alternative hypotheses (Cass., Sez. Un. 26 settembre 2000, Mennuni).

    In line with this interpretative stage there are to be excluded from the enumerated elements appearing favourable and as a consequence obligated to be transmitted to the Re-examination Court, under Article 309 paragraph five Criminal Procedure Code, statements made, as in the case under examination, in the ambit of an extradition procedure against the fellow-suspect who limits himself to giving his own defensive version and to affirm his own extraneity to the facts, without however releasing the other accused subjects from the same crime. It is, therefore, under this profile that the defence petition does not merit granting, it is rejected, rather, by the Re-examination Court on the basis of the erroneous assumption that RHG’s statements were unusable through omission with respect to due process, in reality assured by the German Judicial Authority, which ““ in conformity with the principles contained in the decision-framework of the Council of Ministers of the Union of 13 June 2002, relating to European arrest warrants and the handover procedure between member States (2002/584/GAI) ““ have, amongst other things, pre-emptively made the suspect informed: (1) of the European arrest warrant and its contents, even to the ends of allowing him to consent, if necessary, to the handover; (2) of the right to legal and interpretive assistance during the procedure.

    2. With reference to the second appeal ground by the defence, the Court observes that circumstantial statements are characterized by a different usability regime under a subjective aspect. In the case in which these originate from a person against whom there already is sustained circumstantial evidence as regards the same crime, that is to a crime connected with or tied to the one attributed to a third party, the same cannot be used not only against themselves, but neither in relation to co-accused in the same crime (or of those accused of connected or related crimes).

    The regime of absolute unusability under Article 63 paragraph two Criminal Procedure Code is, instead, to be excluded in the case in which the declarant, whether called to respond, in the same or another matter, for a crime or for crimes attributed to others, which have no procedural ties with the one for which they are being proceeded against, with respect to which the person assumes the character of witness.

    In fact, in the first case, due to the close connection and interdependence between the fact itself and the other one, there arises the necessity to also safeguard the declarant’s right to silence; in the second case, the declarant’s extraneity and indifference with respect to the facts in cause renders them immune to possible sanctions carried out by the investigative bodies (Cass., Sez. Un. 13 febbraio 1997, Carpanelli).

    On a par with these principles, the statements made by AMK at 1:45 on 6 November 2007, ““ at the end of which the interview was suspended and the woman was placed at the disposition of the relevant judicial Authority, revealing circumstantial evidence against herself ““, are usable only contra alios, while the “spontaneous statements” from 5:45 are not usable, neither against the suspect nor against other subjects accused of participation in the same crime, inasmuch as they were made without due process safeguards by a person who had formally assumed the status of suspect.

    On the contrary, the account written in English by Ms K and translated into Italian is fully usable, under Article 237 Criminal Procedure Code, since it is a document originating from the suspect, who had been its spontaneous material author for a defence purpose. The disposition under examination allows attribution of probative relevance to the document not only as regards it and its representative contents, but also in the strength of its particular ties, which tie it to the suspect (or accused), thereby illuminating the review of admissibility which the judge had held to be in operation.

    3. The fourth, fifth and sixth grounds of the petition also lack merit. The circumstantial evidence picture specifically concerning AMK is based, in the first place, on the autopsy results, evidencing multiple contusions and ecchimotic areas on various parts of the body (nose, lip, oral cavity, cheek, mandibular and sub-mandibular region, upper and lower limbs, inner face of labia minore, abdomen, dextral latero-cervical region), an ample dilation, in the order of two to three centimetres, of the anal ring with the presence of small ecchimoses, a large wound, disposed obliquely, in the caudal-lateral sense, fully diastased, with sections of underlying tissue right to the cartiliginous layer in the left latero-cervical region, the complete sectioning of the upper right thyroidal artery, the fracture of the hyoid bone in proximity of the left median. The medico-legal tests, carried out after the necroscopic examination of the body of the victim, permitted the confirmation that the cause of death, around 22:00 hours on 1 November 2007, is ascribable to meta-haemorrhagic shock from the vascular lesion on the neck from an edged blade, occasioned by a pointed implement, capable of penetration, and with a sharpened edge able to cut tissues. The anal dilation, the observation of minute ecchimoses on the posterior part of the anal ring and, above all, the mauvish marks on the inner face of the labia minore, are suggestive of a sexual rapport carried out hastily, before the victim had had time to produce adequate lubrication, occurring in a time period proximate to that of the observation, but in any case before death, by reason of the ecchimotic lesions and their colour.

    The impugned provision highlights that the complex of these medico-legal conclusions assumes a particular evidential value, in the event that place in correlation with other elements: (a) the statements made by the friends of MSCK, who without contradiction stated that the woman had spent the evening of [1] November 2007 in their company, had started to dine with them from 18:00 hours onwards and had left the house in company with SP, who, reaching her home in Via del L around 20:55, had parted from the victim, whose apartment in Via della P was less than ten minutes’ walk from Via del L; (b) the outcome of the search effected at the house of RS, romantically linked to AMK, which permitted the discovery and seizure in the apartment’s kitchen, from the cutlery drawer, of a knife, having an approx. 14cm long blade and 17cm handle. The knife, not forming part of the inventory of the house occupied by AMK, MSCK and two Italian women (cf on the matter, the statements made, as persons informed of the facts, by FR and LM), presented traces of DNA on the handle attributable to AMK and on the blade traces of DNA ascribable to the victim.

    Weighing against the suspect, in the opinion of the judges, there are, in addition, even in their mutability, statements by RS, who, after firstly having claimed to have remained home all evening and night with his girlfriend, stated, afterwards (cf. Interviews of 5 and 6 November 2007) that, at a certain time, Ms K had left and had come back to his house at only around one in the morning.

    The judges of merit have underlined the strict correlation found between the interviews given by S on 5 and 6 November 2007, and the following further elements: (a) statements made by citizen RCB, who, returning to her country of origin, referred to the relevant Authorities the confidence received on 2 November 2007 from AMK regarding the position of the victim’s body and its condition, circumstances that, contrary to the stance of the suspect, she could not have been able to perceive on the occasion of the intervention by the police at the apartment, an intervention that unfolded in a way irreconcilable with the version furnished by Ms K to the friend; (b) statements made by persons informed of the facts FR and LM, who said that Ms K, the day of the fact, was wearing a top, which has not been found since.

    The impugned provision, with logically reasoned argumentation, observes that the content of these declarative acts appears even more significant when evaluated also in the light of the written account produced by the suspect, containing relevant references to M’s scream on the night of the fact, to her reactions, consisting of huddling in the kitchen with her hands over her ears, to the presence of a man, to traces of blood noted by her on RS’s hand during the dinner that took placed at 23:00 on 1 November 2007.

    Under the same lens appearing imbued with unequivocal circumstantial value is the contents of the recording, effected on 17 November 2007 inside the prison where Ms K found herself restricted to and between the woman and her parents, in the course of which there was pronounced by the accused the following words: “It’s stupid, because I cannot say anything else, I was there and I cannot lie about this, there is no reason to do so”;

    These elements must, in their turn, be inserted into a larger circumstantial evidence context, cross-correlated by the identification of a print left in haematic matter present on the scene of the crime from a sports shoe, held to be compatible, by its dimensions and configuration of the sole, with the type of footwear brand “N” used by the suspect and by the failure of the alibi put forward by the young man, being demolished by the technical investigations that were carried out, by which, as he asserted, he had interacted with his computer in the hours in which, according the medico-legal reconstruction, the criminal fact would have occurred, just as also remained demolished that the young man had received a phone call from his father at 23:00, it resulting, instead, said call had occurred at 20:40.

    From the same perspective, light has been shone, with precise and logical reasoning, on the circumstance that in the course of the evening of 1 November 2007, almost at the same time, telephonic traffic for AMK and RS ceased, after the latter had received a call on his mobile phone from his father at 20:40, of which reference has been made earlier and, in addition, that S, contrary to what was by him stated, did not spend the night of 1 and 2 November 2007 sleeping, it having been ascertained that the computer and mobile phone at his disposal were reactivated at dawn on 2 November 2007.

    The judgment reasons, further, on the concourse aspect of the consummation of the homicide and sexual assault, on the basis: (1) of the outcome of the technical tests carried out on the palm print found on the pillow on which the victim had been placed, and it results as belonging to RHG, known to AMK; (b) of the presence of RHG’s DNA on the vaginal swab taken from the cadaver during the autopsy and on the fragment of toilet paper collected from inside the larger bathroom in the apartment, where there had been found faeces, resulting to have been G’s; (c) of the outcome of biological tests carried out on the blood found in the smaller bathroom of the apartment in use by the victim and by Ms K, which permitted the finding that the blood stains on the mat were referable to the victim, those found on the basin to Ms K, and to both the women the blood traces found in the bidet.

    The Court, with thorough and logical reasoning, has illustrated, with full reference to the factual circumstances ““ inasmuch such are unreviewable in this seat of legitimacy ““ the reasons for the attribution of pregnant circumstantial value to the elements above recalled, proving the presence on the scene of the consummation of the homicide and sexual assault of AMK, RS, RHG (these last two both known to Ms K), has explained, with articulate and logically correct reasoning, the reasons for which they cannot find agreement with the defence deductions in terms of erroneous interpretation and reading of the recorded conversation of 17 November 2007, of the account written by Ms K on 6 November 2007, of the results of biological and medico-legal tests, of the unreliability of the technical investigations carried out on the computer and mobile phone belonging to S, and has at length examined, including in the light of aspects formulated by the defence, the entire case file, explaining the reasons of its unequivocal value.

    So, the argumentative development of the judgment reasoning is founded on a coherent critical analysis of the circumstantial evidence and on its cohesion in an organic interpretative framework, in the light of which the attribution to said elements of the requisite of gravity appears supplied with adequate logical and judicial plausibility, in the sense that they have been considered drivers, with a high level of probability, with respect to the theme of investigations concerning the responsibility, amongst others, of AMK, as to the crimes put against her.

    From which, given the evaluation carried out the Re-examination Court on the level of inference of the circumstantial evidence and, therefore, on the more or less demonstrative character of the same in terms of probabilistic qualification of guilt even if not of certainty, it has to be highlighted that the impugned order exceeds the threshold of legitimacy demanded by this Court, whose bench cannot hold itself back from a checking of the respect of rules of logic and of conformity with legal canons which govern the appreciation of grave indicia of guilt, as prescribed by Article 273 Criminal Procedure Code for the ordering of provisions restricting personal liberty, without being able to draw on the intrinsic consistency of the evaluations reserved to the judges of merit.

    4. Unfounded, finally, are the censures formulated by AMK’s defence, on the matter of custody requirements, the Re-examination Court having correctly evaluated them, with reference to the parameters to which letters (a), (b), (c) of Article 274 Criminal Procedure Code apply the extreme gravity of the crimes carried out, having had regard to their nature and their method of consummation, the negative personality of the suspect, which emerges from the outcomes of the investigations and from the served case conduct, the specific and binding requirements relevant to the investigations in relation to the clear and present danger for [evidence] acquisition and probative genuineness, considering the necessity for completing the testing and of proceeding with the gathering of other means of declarative proof, the outcome of the handover to Italian authorities, of RHG, as well as allowing corroborations to be made, also permeates the current contrast between the different versions so far furnished of what happened, the clear danger of flight, taking into account the foreign citizenship aspect of the suspect and of the penalty of more than two years’ imprisonment, impacting on the outcome of the recognition of her criminal responsibility.

    5. Refusal of the appeal leads in law to the appellant ordered to pay procedural costs.

    The Registry will provide for its carrying out as prescribed by Article 94 paragraph 1-ter, and actuating provisions Criminal Procedure Code.

    FOR THESE REASONS

    Rejects the appeal and orders the appellant to pay procedural costs. Disposes transmission via the Registry a copy of the provision to the Director of the penitentiary institution per Article 94 paragraph 1-ter, and actuating provisions Criminal Procedure Code.

    So decided in Rome, in Chambers, 1 April 2008.

    DEPOSITED IN THE REGISTRY 21 APRIL 2008


    4. Catnip Translation: Gemelli Report On Sollecito

    Summary

    Held: the decision to continue pre-trial prison detention for the suspect was reasonable.


    THE REPUBLIC OF ITALY

    IN THE NAME OF THE ITALIAN PEOPLE

    THE SUPREME COURT OF CASSATION

    SECTION 1 CRIMINAL DIVISION


    Comprised of the most Honourable Justices:

    Dr Torquato GEMELLI - President -

    Dr Emilio Giovanni GIRONI - Member -

    Dr Maria Cristina SIOTTO - Member -

    Dr Umberto ZAMPETTI - Member -

    Dr Margherita CASSANO - Member -

    have pronounced the following


    JUDGMENT

    on the appeal lodged by:

    (1) RS, born on X, against Order of 30/11/2007 Liberty Court of Perugia;

    having heard the relation made by Member Emilio Giovanni Gironi;

    having heard the conclusions of the Prosecutor-General Dr Consolo for its rejection;

    having heard the defence advocates G and T (substituting for advocate M).


    REASONS FOR THE DECISION


    The order referred to in opening confirmed, at the Re-examination stage, the one by which the GIP [the Preliminary Investigation Magistrate] had applied pre-trial prison detention of RS for participation in the murder of MSCK, the which occurring in Perugia on the evening of the 1st of November 2007 by means of a cutting weapon, in an alleged context of sexual assault by a group, in which there would have taken part, in addition to S, his girlfriend AK and a RHG, who had left behind a palm print on the bloodied pillow on which the victim’s body was resting and whose DNA was found on the vaginal swab taken from the body of the same and on faecal traces found in a bathroom of the house that the victim was sharing with Ms AK and two Italian students.

    The picture of circumstantial evidence specifically concerning S consists of the identification of a print left in haematic material present at the scene of the crime of a sports shoe held to be compatible, because its dimensions and configuration of the sole, with the type of footwear, “N” brand size 42.5, used by the suspect; of the recovery ““ in the kitchen of his house ““ of a kitchen knife bearing traces of Ms AK’s DNA on the handle and on the blade traces of Ms MK’s DNA; and of the collapse of the alibi put up by the young man (having been disproven by technical investigations carried out), in which, as asserted by him, he had interacted with his computer during the hours in which, according to the forensic pathologist’s reconstruction, the criminal fact would have occurred, that is between 22:00 and 23:00 of the 1st November 2007; from the investigations carried out up until now it would appear, in fact, that the last interaction with the machine on 1 November occurred at 21:10 and that the subsequent one took place at 5:32 the day after, when S also reactivated his mobile phone, acts witnessing thereby an agitated and sleepless night. Equally disproven was that the young man had received a phone call from his father at 23:00 on the night of the murder, it resulting, instead, that said call had happened at 20:40.

    Against S, caught at the time of arrest with a switchblade initially considered compatible with the wounds found on the neck of the victim, would line up, in addition, the mutability of the stories given to the investigators by the same and by his girlfriend, having initially maintained they had remained the whole evening and night in the young man’s house, later to state, instead, that at a certain point Ms AK would have left to meet the Ivorian [sic] citizen PDL, manager of a pub in which Ms AK was undertaking casual employment, she making a returning to her boyfriend’s house only around one in the morning.

    It must, finally, be added that the same Ms AK had, amongst other things, initially referred (not confirming, in any case, the thesis in confused and contradictory subsequent versions) to having taken herself to her own house with L, where this latter (he also was struck with a custody order, later revoked after the previously mentioned identification of G’s DNA) had had sexual relations with Ms MK, and to having, while she herself was in the kitchen, heard her friend scream, without, further, remembering anything else of the subsequent events, up until the occurrences of the day after, marked by the discovery of traces of blood in the small bathroom next to Ms MK’s room and culminating in the discovery of the body, after the intervention of the forces of law and order (the police appear, in particular, to have intervened prior to the call to 112 effected by S); in particular, the young woman was specifically pointing out not being able to remember whether S were also present in the victim’s house on the occasion of the events just described.

    The Re-examination Court concluded recognizing, for the purposes of maintaining pre-trial detention, the persistence of all the types of pre-trial exigencies mentioned by Article 274 Criminal Procedure Code.

    The S defence has indicated an appeal, on the grounds of, with new reasons as well:

      reference to Ms AK alone of the circumstantial evidence constituted by the presence of biological traces from her and from the victim on the knife found at S’s house;

      absence, at the scene of the crime, of biological traces attributable to the suspect [ndr: note, this was before the bra-clasp tests had been done];

      arbitrary transference onto S of the weighty circumstantial evidence against Ms AK, on the unfounded assumption that the pair could not have been anything but together at the moment of the homicidal fact;

      inexistent evidential value of the phases relative to the discovery of the body;

      absence of blood traces from the soles of the “N” shoes worn by the suspect even at the moment of his arrest;

      absence of any evidential value of merit, alleged failure of the alibi, constituting the use of his computer, of which the falsity has not in any case been ascertained, of the lack of interaction by the subject with the machine after the last operation at 21:10 not permitting the inference that the computer was not, however, engaged in downloading files (being, to be specific, films);

      irrelevancy of the mistake revealed between the indicated time of the phone call to the father furnished by S and the actual time of the call, given the uncertainty of the time of death of the victim, depending on the time, otherwise uncertain, of the consumption of the dinner (according to various witness statements coinciding with 18:00), it being well able, therefore, for the time indicated by the forensic pathologist (23:00) to be revised backwards to 21:00, a little before which time the witness P had referred to having made a visit to S, finding him at home and not on the verge of going out;

      interpretability of the so-called unlikelihood of the versions supplied by the suspect as attempts to cover for (aid and abet) another subject;

      attribution of the victim’s biological traces found on the knife seized at S’s house to chance contamination not related to the homicidal fact;

      insufficiency of the pre-trial exigencies, having diminished in a probative sense after the return to Italy of G; those relating to risk of flight lacking in specificity and concreteness; and with reference to the conventional content of blogs posted on the internet by the suspect, those relating to danger to society illogically reasoned;

      missing appearance of the young man’s walk, via security cameras installed along the route that the aforesaid would have had to traverse to go from his house to that of the victim’s.

    The appeal is unfounded.

    As regards what this Court is permitted to appreciate, not being able here to proceed with a re-reading of the investigative results nor with an alternative interpretation of the factual data referred to in the custody order, the appellant defence substantially contests the recognition, as against S, of the necessary requisite of grave indicia of culpability. The question thus posed and submitted for scrutiny by this bench of the well-known limits of the competence of the court of merit, it must be held that the finding expressed by the Re-examination judges concerning the gravity of the frame of circumstantial evidence is not susceptible to censure.

    Not upheld, in the first place, is the defence submission according to which the knife bearing the genetic prints of Ms AK and of Ms MK found in S’s house would constitute a piece of evidence relevant solely as against the young woman, even if privy of traces attributable to the suspect, the utensil has as always been found in the young man’s house, and the testimony acquired up until now has led to the exclusion that it formed part of the inventory of the house inhabited by the victim, and which, at the time, and until proved to the contrary, must be held to be the same available for use by the suspect and which had been used in MK’s house, there being contested no access by her to S’s house.

    Given the multitude of group contributive possibilities, the fact is not significative, then, in itself being a neutral element, that on the scene of the crime there are no biological traces attributable to S, to which, in any case, is attributable the “N” brand shoe print considered compatible, by dimensions and sole configuration, with the footwear worn by the suspect at the time of arrest. Although having the same impugned order excluded, at the time, the certainty of the identification constitutes as, in any case, a certain datum that the print in question had been made in haematic material found in Ms MK’s room by a shoe of the kind and of the dimensions of those possessed by the appellant, while it remains to be excluded that this could have originated from G’s shoe, who wore a size 45 and, therefore, dimensions notably larger. The revealed coincidence, notwithstanding the residual uncertainty on the identification, assumes particular valency in relation to the restricted circle of subjects gravitating to the scene of the homicide, with not even Ms AK, who made admissions about her presence on site at the same time as the execution of the offence, excluding the presence of her boyfriend in the victim’s house in the same circumstance; nor can it be held that the print could have been left by S the following morning, he never having claimed to have entered into the room wherein the body was lying.

    It does not answer, therefore, to verity that, as against the young man, there had been recognized, by a phenomenon of transference, items of circumstantial evidence in reality pointing solely to Ms AK.

    The last finding held unfavourable to S is constituted by the failed proof of the alibi constituted by the argument of the suspect as having remained at home on the computer until late at night; it being a matter of, properly speaking, an alibi failing up till now and not of a false alibi and the defence, correctly, does not refute the technico-judicial valency of the circumstantial evidence, but it remains, in any case, acquired into the case file that the accused had not been able to prove his absence from the locus of the crime at the same time. An item up until now assumed as certain is, instead, the fact that S had interacted with his computer at 5:32 the morning following the murder, at around the same time reactivating his own mobile phone, a contradiction of the assumption of a waking up only at 10:00 and a symptomatic tell-tale of a more or less sleepless night; likewise as symptomatic was held to be the nearly simultaneous cessation of telephonic traffic as much by Ms AK, in his company the evening of 1 November 2007.

    The proof of a permanent stay in his house by the suspect can, all told, be considered as acquired up until 20:40 ““ coincident with P’s visit ““ who confirmed his presence, or up until 21:10, the last interaction time on the computer, but this does not cover the time of the homicide, located between 22:00 and 23:00.

    As for the proposed argument that S’s conduct were interpreted as aiding and abetting, this does not result, in the event, as being supported by anything emerging from the investigations and its plausibility cannot be verified by the judges of merit.

    In conclusion, the Re-examination Court’s evaluation as to the gravity of the circumstantial evidence picture are removed from the audit of this court.

    There remains, finally, the finding that for what concerns the pre-trial exigencies, those of a probative nature are not able to be considered as ceasing from the sole fact of G’s re-entry into Italy (amongst other things significantly never invoked in the statements by the suspect and by his girlfriend, who instead co-involved L in the proceedings), given the existence of an investigative picture in continual evolution, in which the positions of the various protagonists so far remain unclear, the changing versions of which are marked by reticence and mendaciousness (the same suspect had, in truth, admitted to having, at least initially, told “˜a load of balls’); but the permanence of pre-trial exigencies had been held reasonablely even under the aspect of flight risk, in relation to the gravity of the charges and of the potential sanctions, not to mention danger to society, given the revealed fragility of character and the specific personal traits of the subject, ““ which would narrowly evaluate as innocuous youthful stereotypes ““, in a context the more connoted by the noted habitual use of drugs.

    FOR THESE REASONS

    Rejects the appeal and sentences the appellant to payment of costs of the proceedings. Article 94 para 1 ter, and activating provisions, Criminal Procedure Code, applies.

    Rome, 1.4.2008.

    DEPOSITED IN THE REGISTRY ON 21 APRIL 2008

    5. Highlighting Of Relevant Hoax Points

    Shown in bold in the statement on Knox are:

    (1) the defense appeal against the use of Knox’s 5-6 November statements framing Lumumba (reason given was ONLY no lawyer being present - a need which Knox herself had shrugged off when she herself insisted on writing out the 1:45 am and 5:45 am and noon statements) and there is zero mention of abuse;

    (2) Cassation’s reasoning why the first 2 Knox statements (the 1:45 and 5:45) can indeed be used, in the “sub-trial” addressing the calunnia against Patrick, and the third (scribbled around noon) can be used in the main trial.

    In neither statement is there any ruling of “illegal” regarding any actions by any interrogators. The Knox shills often falsely claim there was.


    Saturday, November 15, 2014

    The Status Of The Various Computers In The Case #2 New Developments

    Posted by Sallyoo





    Please first see my previous post and my several updates in the Comments thread.

    There has been a new flurry of interest in Raffaele’s computers following the publication, on iip, of a report prepared by Prof. Alfredo Milani. It is available in both in Italian and English, (translation prepared by iip.)

    The report isn’t dated, but it was prepared after the Massei report had been published, and it was taken into evidence at the Hellmann appeal. Milani credits another defence computer expert, D’Ambrosio, with a lot of the content.

    There have been (to my knowledge) three “˜defence computer expert reports’ prepared. The first, signed by Angelucci in March 2008, is concerned primarily with the damaged hard disks of the Asus of Sollecito, and the computers of Meredith Kercher and Amanda Knox. This report was commissioned by Dalla Vedova and has not (as far as I can determine) ever been taken into evidence, or even mentioned in court.

    The salient point in this document is that the data was recovered from the disks of Sollecito’s Asus and Meredith Kercher’s computer.

    Then we have D’Ambrosio testifying at Massei (available), accompanied by a report written by D’Ambrosio and Gigli taken into evidence (not available).

    At Hellmann we have the Milani report. Raffaele mentions Alfredo Milani in his book as one of his professors.

    There isn’t a lot of (strictly computer) information in it which goes beyond D’Ambrosio’s testimony, although the tone is very different. While D’Ambrosio was relatively generous to the police computer analysts, appreciating the procedural retrictions which they worked under, Milani gets close to being offensively insulting to those tehnicians. (Compare with the Conti/Vecchiotti tactics”¦)

    Milani attempts to make us believe that two “˜grave methodological errors’ committed by the postal police have concealed data which would provide an alibi.

    Firstly he spends much time outlining the MacOS, in every release, and tells us that because the postal police used an “˜analogous but not identical’ MacBook a tiny difference in the release number of the operating system renders their analysis unreliable. This is impossible to acept for two reasons - firstly that the OS employed resided on the cloned disk from Sollecito’s own MacBook, but more importantly the precise OS release would not affect in any way the reading of the log files.

    Secondly, he unwisely reminds us of inodes (log files). These files are regularly archived, in compressed form, and this archive is not overwritten. The archive isn’t very simple for an ordinary user to search, but such a search is certainly within the capabilities of an “˜expert computer consultant’. If Milani had discovered anything - such as a use of the Samba utility via the Asus which would have been recorded - he would have told us about it.

    He also includes some gratuitous comments - which are rather fun - so we can move onto those now!

    Milani has trawled up a keyboard interaction (on Sollecito’s Mac), at 22.04 on November 5, when he assures us that Sollecito was in the questura. Well, every other piece of evidence has Sollecito not arriving at the questura that evening until at least 22.30 - but Raffaele has always claimed to have been eating with a friend when he received the phone call at 21.30 asking him to attend the questura. Was Sollecito at Riccardo’s? Did he nip home (why) before going to the questura? We shall never know, but Milani has given us reason to speculate.

    He also offers us the playlist of the music tracks both listened to and skipped between 05.40 and 06.20 (approx) on the morning of Nov 2 - which for some reason he erroneously asserts that the postal police failed to identify as an interaction. You can form your own opinion on the musical taste of the listeners, Nirvana and Bon Jovi feature.

    Additionally we learn that one of the films “˜recently viewed’ was Suicide Club, a Japanese cult movie, which can charitably be described as Extreme Fantasy. We also discover that in the CD drive was music from Blind Guardian - a German heavy metal band who used fiction/fantasy themes in their lyrics. (I am left with the impression that Sollecito and Knox were determined not to live in the real world during this period).

    A further couple of snippets, the first from an intercepted conversation in prison between Raffaele, his father and his stepmother, Marisa Papigni:

    FS:....have nothing to do with [rude in italian] ... and they understood ... now this morning or Monday there will be also the checking of your computer ... they have already cloned the hard disk .. “

    RS: “”¦ my concern of the computer is basically that if I came ...”

    Marisa Papagni: “Hey ... there is a monster on your computer ... there is a monster ... “

    RS: “Forget it ... the fact about the computer is if I have spent much time with Amanda ... there is not all this time I have spent with the computer ...”

    FS: “If Amanda was home ... if she was out, wtf were you doing? ... were you at the computer?” .....

    And from Honor Bound:

    Papà  told him about the data from my computer”¦.but still Maori was skeptical. “Why don’t you let me see it?” he asked.

    My father didn’t have the data with him, but he said his brother, Giuseppe, could fax it over.



    Below: Professor Milani; Perugia University School of Mathematics & Computers


    Wednesday, November 05, 2014

    Denial Of Parole For Rudy Guede Could Be Yet More Bad News For Knox And Sollecito

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Above and below: Mammagialla prison at Virterbo north of Rome where Guede is


    Rudy Guede has been in prison at Viterbo for seven years less only several weeks now.

    Despite his claims via closed-circuit TV that he has had an exemplary record and has nearly finished a college degree, the Italian parole oversight board in Rome has just declined his work release application.

    Rudy Guede has been treated fairly, and does seem to have behaved himself, and there is zero evidence he was on a crime wave or dealt drugs or acted as a snitch for the Perugia police.

    Despite that, he has never been given any breaks in the past seven years except as described here by the current system. 

    That post in fact reflects the view of a number of pro-victim Italian judges and prosecutors who personally incline toward the UK and US practice of plea bargaining under which the accused puts realistic evidence on the table and rolls over on accomplices and shows real remorse, in return for which lesser charges are arrived at.

    The grounds for refusing work-release parole were not published, but if this is a way of pressuring Guede into further pressuring Knox and Sollecito? Go for it.







    Thursday, October 30, 2014

    Why Numerous American JUDGES Favor The Supremely Neutral Italian Kind Of System

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    See that above at the bottom of the YouTube screen? Some $280 million has been spent since the year 2000.

    Can you guess what the $280 million was for?

    In fact the $280 million is funds raised and spent for judges’ election campaigns in the roughly 3/4 of all American states where such judges’ elections are held - the original intention of which was good: to get judicial choices out of smoke-filled rooms.

    Sitting judges and prospective judges themselves usually dont like this fundraising, because they have to take time off to raise these funds,  and pressures from donors - including bad-boy donors and in some cases defense lawyers seeking a break - can become extreme.

    We have posted previously on enlightened American lawyers favoring main aspects of the Italian kind of system and on American cities now doing the same. Now we see many American judges and public-interest groups inclining the same way.

    Why all judges in Italy are impartial and well-trained in the extreme (like all prosecutors) and dont have to keep their paws outstretched is that they are in a merit-based system where only their performance and not their politics counts.

    We described how Italian justice system officials have to jump hurdle after hurdle in getting their cases advanced. A very demanding process in which only the best succeed.

    It’s the same with their careers. They have to jump hurdle after hurdle in exams and peer assessment to advance from level to level - to make it as high for example as this revered prosecutor here.

    Do such serial defamers of the Italian system as Doug Preston and Steve Moore and ex-judge Michael Heavey bother to tell you this about the Italian system? Probably not. They have never been truthful about it before.


    Wednesday, October 29, 2014

    The Knox Interrogation Hoax #15: Dr Mignini’s Account Of Formal Warning Session Ending 5:45 AM

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters



    Dr Mignini examines Knox July 2009 on the “interrogation” at her own initiative

    1. Overview Of This Post

    Post #1 includes an overview of the entire series and links to all posts up to this one.

    Knox has repeatedly claimed that Dr Mignini was present at the informal summary/recap session led by Inspector Rita Ficarra, the actual purpose of which was merely for Knox to suggest a few possible leads the police might interview.

    He wasn’t there, though. And he has repeatedly explained that at the second session ending with a second insisted-upon statement by Knox at 5:45 AM, his entire role was to read Knox her rights, and to advise her to say no more until she had appointed lawyers. (Regardless, she then insisted on dictating that second statement.)

    Dr Mignini more than anyone else at the central police station that night developed a complete overview of how the two sessions had proceeded.

    THREE TIMES Knox willingly put herself under his questioning (December 2007, January 2008, July 2009) to attempt to shake this. While his questioning was formal, polite and quite mild, Knox’s recollection of 5-6 November was scrambled or devious (some think she and RS were both high on hard drugs).

    So by the end of those sessions Knox seems to have made a complete disbeliever of Dr Mignini, swayed few if any in Italy, and certainly did not sway the judges of the trial court or any appeal court.

    But few English-language reporters other than Andrea Vogt, John Follain and Barbie Nadeau have interviewed and reported Dr Mignini in depth fairly, and there are a number of English-language reporters to whom he kindly gave time who mangled what he lucidly and fairly explained to them.

    In July 2009 Dr Mignini wrote an acerbic email to Linda Byron of Seattle TV to attempt to straighten out her own understanding, and although she seemingly tried to hide it, we captured it and translated and posted in full his explanation.

    Highly worth reading.

    In mid 2011 a similar thing happened. Drew Griffen of CNN was given a three-hour on-camera interview - and sarcastically broadcast cherrypicked and mangled responses from Dr Mignini. Again we obtained Dr Mignini’s full statement, and Skeptical Bystander posted the whole thing in three long parts, with translation by Clander, Yummi, Jools, Thoughtful, TomM and Catnip.

    Again, highly worth reading.

    In the first 20 minutes of the second hour of the interview, Drew Griffen tried to give Dr Mignini a hard time over the so-called Knox interrogation. Drew Griffen was abysmally informed of the testimony at trial we have been posting and had no idea of the substance of Knox’s one interview on 5-6 November or the fact that this was merely a recap/summary session not ever requiring recording.

    Dr Mignini had not himself testified at trial, and he led the testimony of others present on 5-6 November very fairly and without defense protests about any bias. And Dr Mignini is not under oath here. However this 20-minute segment is important, for it reinforces that Knox was treated extremely fairly and she had no genuine reason for complaint about it.

    2. From Mid-2011 Interview By CNN With Dr Mignini

    0’40’’ English question [Translator’s note: These words are in English in the Italian transcript of which this document is a translation.]

    0’48’’ CNN: You didn’t interrogate Amanda?

    0’50’’ Mignini: Oh, the police interrogated her. I was told about it. I wanted to explain this. I remember that I had gone to sleep and the director of the flying squad, Dr. Profazio, called me, because he tells me: “There are developments; Raffaele in fact has denied what he had said before”. So I went down and the head of the flying squad told me what had happened. At some point they tell us that Amanda has made this statement.

    And thus her interrogation as a person informed of the facts was suspended by the police in compliance with Article 63 of the Italian Code of Criminal Procedure [c.p.p. - Codice di Procedura Penale], because if evidence appears that incriminates the person, the person being questioned as a person informed of the facts can no longer be heard, and we must stop. “Everyone stop! There must be a defense attorney [present]”. And thus the police stopped and informed Amanda, who had placed herself on the scene of the crime and who said that she had accompanied Lumumba and let him in and that then Lumumba, in the other room, allegedly committed a sexual act and killed Meredith. This is what she said.

    2’11’’ Then I was called, I was informed about this, I went to Amanda who, I remember how she was, what she looked like, I remember her very well, she remained imprinted in my memory, I still remember then two things about Amanda that struck me at the time: first, she looked like she was relieved of a burden and second, she was like, and this is another detail that was impressive, it seemed as if she was terrified of Lumumba.

    20’48’’ Then I, as I had in some way to, let’s say”¦ this police interrogation had been suspended. At that point I remember that”¦ they made me notice that Amanda, because she wanted to go on talking, I remember she had, like a need to. So I told her: “you can make statements to me; I will not ask questions, since if you make a spontaneous statement and I collect it, I will collect your statement as if I were in fact a notary”. She then repeated [her story] to the interpreter, who was Mrs. Donnino, I remember there was a police woman officer who wrote the statement down [verbalizzava], I did not ask questions. She basically repeated what she had told the police and she signed the statement. Basically I didn’t ask Amanda questions. Not before, since the police asked them and I was not there, and not after, since she made spontaneous statements. Had I been asking her questions, a defense attorney should have been there. This is the procedure.

    05’24 CNN: She had an interpreter during the whole time?

    05’26’’ Mignini: Yes.

    05’29’’ CNN: She says no.

    05’32’’ Mignini: Look the interpreter was there, when I heard her there was the interpreter. The interpreter Anna Donnino, who is an interpreter for the police; she was hired by the police.

    Just like I believe that there was [before], I do not have the minutes now, but yet now this is a fact, it is undisputed that there was an interpreter.

    06’02’’ CNN: Amanda Knox says she was interrogated for 14 hours”¦

    06’11’’ Mignini: No, look, absolutely not. At 1 a.m., the minutes of Nov 6th has started at 1 a.m. and I arrived, 14 hours that cannot be, we are really”¦ that’s absolutely impossible. So the minutes were done at one o’clock, then the minutes of the spontaneous declaration was taken at 5.45, it maybe lasted half an hour because no questions were asked. She made her statements; they were translated; then at around 8 a.m., I think, at approximately 8, I drew up the detention order. Thus it is”¦ well, she had been heard earlier, so she had been questioned as a person informed of the facts at around one forty-five a.m. She had previously been heard by a female police officer, but [that’s] because she had gone voluntarily to the police and she reported that, she said things quite relevant to the investigation of Raffaele and was heard by the inspector [Rita] Ficarra. However this [event] ... I was not there, I do not know [about it]. But remember, there are the minutes. Then the minutes in which she was questioned as a person informed of the facts starts at 1:45 of November 6, and cannot have lasted 14 hours ... in no way whatsoever. Then she was arrested at around 8 a.m. or at about 9 a.m. or so.

    08’16’’ Mignini: Look, I remember what I saw when I saw her personally, because she said, I told her: “you can make, if you deem it [necessary], a spontaneous statement, because Italian law provides for this. If a person is aware that he/she is suspected [under investigation], may request to speak before a magistrate, it happened many times, they came also to me, and they say “I want to make a statement”. Very well, I listen. If I listen, I wanted this to be highlighted”¦. to be clear, I listen and that’s all, and I ask no questions, the defense attorney may be not present. But if I ask questions and I object to the facts [of your answers], it is like an interrogation and thus we would need a defense attorney.

    09’10’’ CNN: was [Amanda Knox] scared?

    09’11’’ Mignini: Well, I recall this feeling that I had in that moment which, [as] I am explaining to you, in the spirit in which I am doing this interview, to explain to you the acceptance [adozione] of our requests [provvedimenti], what was, why the trial went in a certain way. [Translator’s note: The Italian in the CNN transcript is nearly incomprehensible. We have provided the foregoing on a best effort basis.]

    09’36’’ She was, she seemed to me like she was uplifted, freed of a weight, and terrified of Lumumba. That’s an impression that has stayed with me, yet I don’t understand. I remember that there was a policeman who was called, from the SCO [Servizio Centrale Operativo] in Rome, who made an impression on me because he was very fatherly. She was crying as though freed of a great weight, and he was trying to console her. I remember there was also a policewoman who, well, she”¦[missing word?] and I’m sure that.. [missing word?] .. well, all that picture how it was described later”¦ at that moment it wasn’t like that. Right then, there was a situation in which I was trying to console her, to encourage her, because actually we believed that she had told the truth.

    11’03’’ CNN: No one hit her?

    11’06’’ Mignini: No, look, absolutely not. I can state this in the most positive way, and then, let’s say”¦ I wasn’t there when she was being questioned by police, the rooms are quite far away”¦ you don’t know but I was”¦ it’s quite far, there’s a corridor, and I was with the director, Dr. Porfazio, and she was being questioned in a different place. I also remember that passing through, I also saw Sollecito who was alone in a different room; he was also being questioned, as I recall. I don’t exclude”¦well”¦it’s clear that I wasn’t there, but I don’t believe that anything whatsoever happened, and in my presence absolutely not.

    11’55’’ On the contrary, there was an attitude of”¦ I mean they gave her [some] ... [missing word?] then she was like, you know, like someone crying from a sense of liberation, as though she had been freed. That was the attitude.

    12’51’’ CNN: Why wasn’t there any video or transcript of those hours?

    13’00’’ Mignini: Look, that’s, I was at the police station, and all the”¦let’s say”¦when I made investigations in my own office, I taped them. I taped them, we have an apparatus for that, and I transcribed them. For example, there’s the interrogation of the English girls, Meredith’s friends, it was all taped. The interrogations of Amanda in prison were taped, and then transcribed, and we have the transcripts of”¦ But in a police station, at the very moment of the investigation it isn’t done, not with respect to Amanda or anyone else. Also because, I can tell you, today, even then, but today in particular, we have budget problems, budget problems that are not insignificant, which do not allow us to transcribe. Video is very important”¦I completely agree with you that videotaping is extremely important, we should be able to have a video recording of every statement [verbale di assunzione di informazioni] made Because what is said is very important, but it’s maybe even more important how it is said, the non-verbal language. Because from the non-verbal language you can [missing words].

    15’14’’ Mignini: It isn’t only Amanda, it’s always like that. But I wanted to say that I agree with him that it’s fundamental, only there’s a problem, especially when the witnesses are so numerous, and in fact just recording, I mean recording the sound, isn’t enough according to me.

    15’38’’ CNN: It doesn’t cost much, he says.

    15’40’’ Mignini: Well we have significant budget problems, that’s what it is.

    15’38’’ CNN: So in the end, you did get a confession. But then, everything that was written in the confession became a lie?

    16’16’’ Mignini: But then, there was the fact that she placed herself at the scene of the crime, and Lumumba wasn’t there, together with the three of them, the two of them, but Rudy was there, according to the facts that emerged later. But the fact of having accused”¦and she’s even accused of calumny in regard to Lumumba, was an element that was very important from the point of view of her legal position at the trial. Why accuse someone of participating in a crime, placing yourself at the scene of a crime? Because with those declarations, she placed herself at the scene, at the place of the crime. And she placed someone there who was a complete stranger to it. Why did she do that? There is one detail that’s particularly significant. Above all when Lumumba was arrested and no one ““ if it hadn’t been for the Public Prosecutor’s Office that conducted the investigation, and that is mandated to seek elements in favor of the accused, Lumumba would have stayed in prison. But we investigated, and we saw that Lumumba wasn’t involved, that he was the object of calumny and so he was freed and the case against him was archived.

    18’15’’ CNN: Was she asked to imagine what might have happened?

    18’24’’ Mignini: No, absolutely not. Either you saw a person or you didn’t. I can’t ask someone what they imagine because it would be a question that doesn’t mean anything, that I even don’t understand.

    This really does finish our posting of the case for the prosecution on this “interrogation” issue, though at least half a dozen other investigators provided supportive testimony which we have not yet quoted.

    Next, how all of the Italian courts up to Cassation concluded that Knox’s claims were unsupported, contradictory, and damaging, and how her three-year prison sentence served was well justified.


    Analysis #3 Of Testimony Of Dr Chiacchiera, Organized Crime Section: Contradictions Between RS & AK

    Posted by Cardiol MD




    1. Overview Of This Series

    In 2007 Dr Chiacchiera was the Director of the Organized Crime Section and the Deputy Director of the Flying Squad.

    He was one of the most senior and experienced law enforcement officers to testify at the trial. His testimony and his cross examination by the defenses occupied a lot of time of the court late in February 2009. He covered the following ground.

    (1) He found Knox and Sollecito uncooperative when he asked them questions.

    (2) Saw evidence contradicting any lone burglar theory and indicating that the “break-In” to Romanelli’s room was faked.

    (3) Phone records and the police investigation into the accused phone activity the night of the murder.

    (4) Discovery of pornographic magazines at Sollecito’s house.

    (5) Details of how the large knife, Exhibit 36, was collected from Sollecito’s and the evidence that it is the murder knife.

    Dr Chiacchiera was submitted to cross-examination on the above 5 items by 4 Attorneys for the Defence of Knox and Sollecito, by 2 Civil Party Attorneys, and to Re-examination by the Prosecution. He had a gruelling time as a witness.

    All the translation is by the ever-dedicated main poster ZiaK. This series is highlighting some key portions. Here is the full 50-page transcript which will be posted in the trial testimony area of McCall’s great Wiki.

    (GCM=Giancarlo Massei; MC=Manuela Comodi; MaCh=Marco Chiacchiera; GB=Giulia Bongiorno; DD=Donatella Donati; CP=Carlo Pacelli; LG=Luciano Ghirga; CDV=Carlo Dalla Vedova; FM=Francesco Maresca)

    Continuation of Dr Chiacchiera’s Evidence-in-Chief:

    MaCh: It emerged that normally Sollecito kept his cellphones, and also Amanda Knox, they kept their cellphones on until a late hour, evening, [sic] there is no telephone traffic from 20:40 hours. A thing of this “¦

    {Witness begins Testimony re cellphones and is interrupted}

    MC: But did this emerge from the declarations or did it emerge from the analysis of the [phone] records in the preceding days?

    {Examiner interrupts witness with good Q re source of telephone-usage information}

    MaCh: It emerged from the analysis of the [phone] records in the preceding days.

    {Witness answers clearly}

    GCM: Excuse me. Let me understand. In other words you say: the cellphone was switched off and there was no telephone traffic, these are two different things.

    {Court asks good clarifying Q}

    MaCh: I’m saying, Mr President. Two things. The first, normally Sollecito’s telephone and the telephone of Amanda, were switched on until the late hours. The fatal evening, they were switched off from 20:42 hours until “¦ one [of the phones] from 20:42 onwards and the other from about 20:50 onwards. One. Two, the traffic “¦

    {Witness is Answering Court's Q in 2 parts. When he gets to his part #2, Court interrupts}

    GCM: Before going on to “Two”, excuse me: “normally” ““ what does that mean? You had “¦

    {Court is asking good Q re witness's Part #1, but is interrupted}

    MaCh: We had done a comparative analysis of the telephone traffic of that evening with the telephone traffic of the preceding evenings. Shall we say the habits ...

    {Witness interrupts Court with narrative response, and is also interrupted}

    GCM: And so the “normally” emerges from this?

    {Court interrupts witness's response with good Q}

    MC: How many evenings? If you recall, or not?

    {Examiner asks witness relevant Q, adding redundant Q}

    MaCh: Months, no “¦ honestly, I don’t remember how many [evenings], but months.

    {Witness stumbles, seeming uncertain re 'evenings' vs 'months'}

    MC: I mean to say, not “¦

    {Examiner preambles re her redundant Q but is interrupted}

    MaCh: Not three days, no. The telephone traffic habits were evaluated. [This is point] one. [Point] Two, the element that emerged, that contradicted the declarations, I can’t report on the declarations but I can report on the element that contradicted [sic. i.e. provided the contradiction], that in effect no telephone call had arrived at 23:00 hours, as had been declared: on the phone line that was declared to have received that “¦ the recipient of that very phone-call. Another element: no interaction with the computer emerged, unlike what was declared. So there were a few objective elements of comparison from the analysis and from the technical checks that contradicted what had previously been revealed.

    {Witness interrupts Examiner with narrative response to Examiner's Q, witness indicating contradiction between suspects' declarations and objective records of telephone and computer activity}

    MC: For Amanda Knox, were there incongruities of this type?

    {Examiner asks if incongruities/contradictions existed for Amanda Knox}

    MaCh: Yes, there were incongruities because Amanda Knox was, how to say, contradicted by Sollectio, and then she contradicted herself, if I may “¦

    {Witness answers affirmatively, amplifying applicability both to Sollecito & Knox, but is interrupted}

    GB: President, if we continue in this way, then we might as well do the old [trial] procedure.

    {Giulia Bongiorno, Sollecito's lawyer interjects, objecting-subjectively to Court, but submitting no legal basis for her objection}

    GCM: Excuse me, please.

    {Court seems to politely rule GB out-of-order}

    MaCh: The elements, these are [sic], Mr President, I don’t know how to do.

    {Witness communicates uncertainty to Court}

    MC: But it is so difficult, however.

    {Examiner chimes-in apparently commiserating with her witness's uncertainty}

    MaCh: Mr President, I really don’t know what to do.

    {Witness seems to repeat statement addressed to Court, who possibly interrupts}}

    GCM: Excuse me”¦

    {Court seems to begin response to Witness, but is possibly interrupted}

    MaCh: If I have to describe the investigation activity “¦

    {Witness may be interrupting Court or is continuing Witness's unfinished statement to Court}

    MC: He’s not referring to declarations.

    {Examiner chimes-in with his opinion re Witness's reference to Defendants' contradictions/incongruities - GB's interjection seems to have side-tracked court procedure}

    GCM: Regarding these declarations, you can report on this [sic. i.e. in this instance?], and with regard to Raffaele Sollecito, you reported ““ citing the telephone traffic and citing the use of the computer. There now, and this is one point. With regard to Amanda Knox, you cannot report the declarations. But you may, however, say ““ following these declarations ““ what type of investigations you carried out, and the outcome of these. So, following the declarations given by Amanda Knox, did you do similar investigations, as [those you did] for Sollecito Raffaele on the [phone] records? Or was there nothing to do, except to “¦?

    {Court rules on subject of testimony re Defendants' declarations, seeming to rule admissibility of Sollecito's declarations re telephone traffic and computer usage, but inadmissibility of Knox's declarations. Court does seem to permit description of investigations that followed Knox's declarations, without describing Knox's actual declarations, and Court asks whether phone-record investigations similar to those done for Sollecito were done for Knox.}

    MaCh: Mr President, all the necessary checks were made, but in that immediate moment the most important element “¦ that is to say, in [this] place [NdT: i.e. “in this Court”], in this moment, in this place, that is to say, when they were “¦ I said [that] when the arrests were made, I don’t, I don’t know how to do, however, the incongruity of the declarations with the facts that we had found, and with the declarations that Sollecito had previously given us, [this] was the most important element. I don’t know if I have managed to “¦

    {Witness seemingly responding to Court that he doesn't know how to deal with the declarations, is interrupted.}

    GCM: No, excuse me (overlapping voices). So, with regard to Raffaele Sollecito, we have
    understood these checking activities were carried out on the declarations made, the verification activities carried out, and [that’s all] very well. With regard to Amanda Knox, if you also carried out “¦ maybe there were no objective elements for possible checking, there were no “¦ or else, there were activities carried out of “¦

    {Court, interrupting over witness's testimony, seems to be explaining his Q to witness, but is interrupted by witness}

    MaCh: Later, there emerged a series of further elements.

    {Witness interrupts with statement re unspecified further elements}

    GCM: Not evaluations on the congruity, incongruity, likelihood, these are evaluations and will be done, there you go, comparably. I’m thinking of the [phone] records, of the use, if she had given indications on the basis of which [you] could carry out investigative activity “¦

    {Court seems to want evidence in Knox's phone records justifying further investigation.}

    Here ends the Testimony Of Dr Chiacchiera covering the relevant Phone Records, elicited by the Prosecution.

    Next comes the Testimony Of Dr Chiacchiera elicited by the Prosecution, covering Discovery of pornographic magazines at Sollecito’s house, Details of how the large knife, Exhibit 36, was collected from Sollecito’s and the evidence that it is the murder knife


    Wednesday, October 22, 2014

    The Hundreds Of DNA Samples Taken And Analyses Done, Shown In Table Form

    Posted by Olleosnep




    1. Even Excluding DNA, There’s Massive Evidence

    Contrary to foolish claims elsewhere, there’s a great deal of evidence implicating not only Guede but also Knox and Sollecito in the brutal murder of Meredith Kercher. 

    The bulk of the evidence is circumstantial, and encompasses different categories of evidence, such as: wounds sustained by Ms. Kercher;  ear and eye witnesses;  footprints; shoeprints; fingerprints and lack thereof; blood patterns; evidence that Ms. Kercher was moved after she died; misplaced items in her room and in the cottage; evidence of partial clean-up; cellphone records; computer evidence; evidence of staged break-in; lack of evidence of actual break-in; statements by all three defendants; lack of alibis; lies by Knox and Sollecito; etc.

    A lot of the most critical evidence has been repeatedly reviewed by many different judges involved in the case, from Judge Micheli to Judge Nencini, and led to the unanimous verdict at trial now confirmed by Appeal Judge Nencini. 

    2. The Massive DNA Evidence Is Equally Conclusive

    We have carried nearly five dozen DNA posts previously on the Scientific Labs work in 2007-09, the discredited judges’ consultants work in 2011, and the Carabinieri Labs work in 2013.

    They go to prove that some of the most damning evidence comes from the DNA traces found on hundreds of samples tested by the Forensic Genetics department of the Italian Scientific Police squadron in Rome. The department was presided over by the biologist Dr. Stefanoni at the time [seen above left with Prosecutor Comodi] who acted as the department’s principal technical director.

    The results of Dr. Stefanoni’s work were collected in several reports issued by her lab during the 2008-2009 investigation and trial phases. Of these reports, two reports in particular comprise a “˜survey’ of the work performed by her lab at the time: the “Genetic Tests” report (GT), and the “Stato Avanzamento Laboratorio” report (SAL). Both reports are available on the Meredith Kercher Wiki.

    These two reports are notable for highlighting the large quantity of testing done and the significant number of objects and items sampled. In addition, the reports not only look at items with blood traces, but also traces of skin cells, feces, semen, and above all, hair traces, an aspect of the evidence that has been largely glossed over in the testimony and in the motivation reports.

    3. For The First Time A Complete DNA Roadmap

    The DNA Spreadsheet will open using Microsoft Excel or alternatives such as the free OpenOffice. Please note the table is very wide.

    In order to better understand the extent of the work and types of the tests performed, I have taken the data that can be gleaned from these two reports and placed them into a single spreadsheet, in order to create a kind of “˜database’ of the testing and analyses done.

    This spreadsheet uses the GT report as a basis, followed by additional information obtainable from the SAL report.

    The spreadsheet is basically a list of each sample, object and/or test done by Dr. Stefanoni’s team. These include tests done for DNA analysis, testing done for Y haplotype analysis and hair sample analysis. In the SAL report, it is shown that a few samples were tested multiple times. The list also includes some objects which were not analyzed at all, or were only analyzed up to a point.

    It should be noted that there are a few difficulties with the reports. The GT report references an associated photographic report that has not been made available. The GT report is also missing a couple of pages and the descriptions of the results are at times inconsistent. Other times it can be tricky to follow exactly what tests were done. Because the report is a black and white scan of an original likely printed in color, some of the information in the tables is difficult or impossible to read. And some traces are missing result tables altogether.

    The SAL report is also incomplete. The luminol samples at the cottage and all the samples taken at Guede’s apartment are missing, as are other samples. The scanned pages in the PDF are out of order, making cross-checking with the GT report tedious. The SAL report does not have all the test data indicated in the GT report. For instance, the human antibody tests noted in the GT report are not indicated in the SAL report. The data in the SAL report is often not as complete as one might think. As an example, all hair samples were logged and assigned a sample number. But those hairs that had no DNA extracted, do not have a date of when they were analyzed. Presumably they were all analyzed as a set for each item, given that the sample number is frequently numerically sequential (i.e. 47084, 47085, 47086, etc.). But it’s not possible to say with certainty when the hairs were reviewed from the report.

    Nevertheless the GT and SAL reports do have significant information that is of interest to the case. Hence the spreadsheet.

    4. Some Guidance For The Use Of The Spreadsheet

    Spreadsheets can be useful for presenting various pieces of data together “˜at a glance’. But the real power of spreadsheets for this type of data is that rows can be sorted in order to group similar pieces of data together, allowing one to get a overview of subsets of data.

    So, for instance, if one wanted to order all the rows by “˜sample number’ to see the sequence of how they were processed in the lab, one need only highlight all the rows (done by clicking on row number 5, holding down the “˜Shift key’ and paging down to the bottommost row), then go to menu option “˜Data’ and then “˜Sort’ and select the column or columns to sort by- “˜AF’ in the case.

    Or perhaps one wants to sort by “˜DNA yielded’ and “˜building’ to see where someone’s DNA was found. Simply select all the rows again, select the menu option “˜Data’ and then “˜Sort’, and select the first column as “˜DNA yielded’ (or column AD), then select as the second column as “˜building (or column F).

    To return to the original order, select all rows again and sort on column A.

    Note that the first four rows in the spreadsheet are “˜locked’, in order to allow the column headers to be always visible.  If one wants to unlock these rows, select the whole spreadsheet by clicking on the upper left corner of the window where the column header labels and row numbers meet. Once the whole spreadsheet is selected, go to “˜View’ option and select “˜Unfreeze panes’. For Excel version 2007 and higher, click on the little arrow to the right of “˜freeze panes’ button on the menu bar, and there will be the option to unfreeze panes.

    If one is handy with Access, or any other database program, it should be possible to import the spreadsheet into that database program, allowing one to perform more powerful “˜queries’.



    The Rome headquarters of the Scientific Police which work closely with the FBI

    5. Explanations Of Some Of The DNA Data

    The data in each column was obtained directly or indirectly obtainable from the two reports by Dr. Stefanoni’s team.

    1) Column “˜A’ allows one to resort rows to their original order, which is based on the order of the “˜item number’ noted in the GT report.

    2) “˜Item number’ refers to the actual piece of evidence, whether an object sampled onsite or an object that was bagged and taken to the lab, as noted in the GT report.

    3) “˜Original item label’ is data provided in the first pages of the GT report, as a way to tie the evidence item back to evidence markers used at the crime scene, and visible in some of the crime scene photos.

    4) “˜Page in attached photo report’ indicates that there is an adjunct “˜photo report’ Dr. Stefanoni provided that has not yet been released, and likely has photos of the evidence items “˜in situ’. This information is also noted in the beginning item lists in the GT report.

    5) “˜Sample date’ is based on the dates noted in the beginning list in the GT report, indicating when the evidence item was sampled or taken from the crime scene. This is sometimes difficult to read, due to the fact that the report was apparently printed in color and the black and white scan hides or obscures some text and graphics.

    6) Columns F-K are location and object data, obtainable from the descriptions in the GT report, especially the first pages that provide a list of where evidence samples were obtained. I broke this data down into various categories to allow different possibilities of grouping the data.

    7) “˜Sample obtained’ indicates the type of biological substance that was assumed to contain DNA. This was first obtained from the GT report, and later corrected with the data from the SAL report, which has a more consistent description of what the sample was assumed to be.

    8) Columns M through AC list data either directly reported in the GT and SAL reports, or interpretable from them. Column M notes if an item was analyzed or not. In the GT report, unanalyzed items are noted in the beginning list as “˜not analyzed’ though not consistently. In the SAL report, they are noted as having 0 samples.

    9) “˜Trace number’ was obtained from GT report, though on a few occasions, the actual number is not clear. Note that the number “˜starts over’ for each evidence item. Sometimes the trace number is sequential, independent of whether it is blood or hair or skin cells. Items having the most traces are those that were “˜heavily’ sampled, including Sollecito’s sneakers, the duvet, Ms. Kercher’s sweat jacket, her jeans, the kitchen knife, the kitchen sponge, etc.

    10) “˜Additional trace info’ is additional information noted from both reports about a specific sample.

    11) Column P “˜revealed in luminol?’ indicates with a “˜yes’ those samples obtained during luminol analysis. What often gets overlooked is that luminol analysis was performed not only at the cottage, but in Sollecito’s car, Sollecito’s apartment and Guede’s apartment. Notable here is that 14 different samples were obtained from luminol analysis at Sollecito’s apartment. While the DNA data yielded was meager, what is important is not the actual data yielded, but the number and location of samples investigated, including samples from door handles, and different locations like the bathroom, bedroom and kitchen. There was certainly a suspicious amount of blood, bleach or turnip juice at Sollecito’s place!

    12) “˜Date of extraction’ comes from the SAL report, though, as mentioned above, it is not consistently reported for every trace or sample analyzed. This indicates when DNA processing occurred on a sample. This column is important to look at when discussing the issue of lab contamination. If one performs a sort on this column and on the “˜sample number’ column, one can clearly see that samples were processed in batches, often a week or two weeks apart. So for instance, claims that the sample 36B happened due to contamination at the lab is really not possible, given that Ms. Kercher’s DNA was analyzed one week earlier (11/5/07 and 11/6/07) and sample 36B is the only sample to contain Ms. Kercher’s DNA from all the samples analyzed on 11/13/07. Similarly, Sollecito’s DNA and Guede’s DNA are only found once each of all the items analyzed on 12/29/07, yet the last time Sollecito’s DNA had been analyzed was on 12/17/07, 12 days earlier. So the likelihood of lab contamination seems extraordinarily small, just from the dates of when samples were analyzed.

    13) “˜TMB test positive’ was originally obtained from the GT report. Again because that report is likely in color, a number of tables have either missing graphics or are missing tables altogether. Fortunately the SAL report has duplicated this data consistently.

    14) “˜Human antibody test positive?’ is obtained from other tables in the GT report, almost always paired with the TMB table. In some cases where the table data is illegible, I’ve placed a “?” in front of an assumed result. Curiously, this test is not shown in the SAL report.

    15) “˜Cat antibody positive?’ is from the GT report, shows that the basement apartment blood samples were all made a by cat, which Dr. Stefanoni comments on in her Massei testimony.

    16) Apparently they also ran “˜dog antibody’ testing as well, as is noted in the GT report.

    17) “˜DNA extraction done?’ indicates if a decision was made to extract DNA. This was inferred from the GT report. Notable here is that even with samples having cat antibodies, Dr. Stefanoni does the DNA extraction anyway to make sure no human DNA is in the sample.

    18) “˜Quantity extracted’ comes from the SAL report. This refers not to the amount of DNA extracted, but specifically to the amount of liquid (50, 100 or 150 microliters) filtered through the Qiagen Bio Robot EZ1 machine. This machine actually filters or purifies the sample, removing all other biological materials like cells, bacteria, etc. leaving only actual DNA molecules which can then be processed. This extraction process is also the quantification process, where from a 50 microliter sample a certain amount of DNA is found and quantified.

    19) “˜Human DNA found during quantification’ was inferred from the GT report. It should be noted that for Dr. Stefanoni’s team, DNA analysis involved finding DNA useful for comparison. This means that Dr. Stefanoni was not looking for a sample of any human DNA, but a sample sufficiently “˜complete’ to be able to compare it with others samples. So it was likely often the case that a trace might have snippets and pieces of DNA, but these pieces were either too small or too fragmented to be useful for any profile comparisons. So “˜No’ in this column means not so much that no DNA was found at all, but that no DNA was found that could be useful for comparison.

    20) “˜Decision to amplify and analyze’ was obtained from the GT report. Sometimes it is explicitly mentioned in the description of the results in the GT report. Other times, it can be inferred from the lack of tables.

    21) “˜Concentrate sample with Speed VAC 110’ means that where “no human DNA was found” (i.e. when no DNA was found sufficiently complete or in sufficient amounts useful for comparison), Dr. Stefanoni decided to process the sample further in an effort to “˜bring out’ whatever DNA there might be. This was done using a “˜concentrator’, which dries the samples and vacuums them, thereby reducing sample fluid to make any DNA present more easily found by the subsequent DNA processing equipment.

    22) “˜STR amplification’ is the DNA copying process whereby any DNA found is copied millions of times to obtain samples that can be adequately rendered by capillary electrophoresis. The process Dr. Stefanoni used is described specifically in the GT report for evidence items 12 and 13.

    23) In some cases “˜Y chromosome amplification’ is also done. While this may be done at the same time by the same machine, I took any Y chromosome amplification to be a separate test, since per the GT report, it sometimes yielded different results. In a few cases, it is not clear from the GT report if Y chromosome amplification was done on only one sample, or on all the samples of an evidence item. In those cases, I assumed all the samples.

    24) “˜Capillary electrophoresis’ is where DNA is rendered through a chemical/electrical process that tags DNA particles with fluorescence. These fluoresced particles are then read by the software of the machine and mapped onto a graph that shows DNA particles as “˜peaks’, which are an indicator of quantity of DNA found. The software of the machine then produced graphs of the peaks obtained and it is these graphs that Dr. Stefanoni and her team used for profile comparison.

    25) “˜DNA yielded’ is what is indicated in the GT report and is based on Dr. Stefanoni’s comparison of the DNA profile(s) shown by capillary electrophoresis to index DNA samples she had of Sollecito, Lumumba, Guede, Knox and Ms. Kercher.

    26) “˜Egram number’ is taken from the GT report.

    27) The “˜sample number’ was taken from the GT and further completed by the SAL report, which has the sample numbers for all samples, whether they were analyzed for DNA or not. The sample numbers are useful for indicating what was happening at the Dr. Stefanoni’s lab. As an example, if one does a sort on column Q (Date of extraction) and column AF (sample number) one can see that between 11/5/07 and 11/6/07, there is gap of 129 samples that were likely performed for another case. The last sample analyzed on 11/5/07 was 47082, and on 11/6/07, the next sample number is 47211. So presumably her lab ran 129 additional DNA tests on samples related to other cases between these two runs. Generally the sample numbers increase sequentially by date, but there are a few exceptions. One in particular is sample 47821, which appears as the last sample on 11/23/07, though samples starting on 11/26/07, three days later, start with sample number 47711. This implies that samples were probably numbered in batches (by sticking numbered labels on tubes or bags) and not necessarily right before extraction or other machine processing was done.

    28) “˜Compatibility notes’ are extra comments noted by Dr. Stefanoni in the GT report.

    29) “˜Likely substance containing DNA’ is interpretable from the GT and SAL report and the results of the testing done.

    30) Finally there are columns related to hair analysis. “˜Type of hair’ comes from the SAL report, and it is sometimes, but not consistently or legibly, noted in the GT report.

    31) “˜Hair color’ provides a description of the hair color. Notable is that the hair description is quite consistent, with black, blonde, chestnut, light chestnut, red chestnut being the more significant categories. This is available in both the GT and SAL report and both reports match.

    32) “˜Hair length;’ is obviously the length of hair analyzed. I’m not sure how this was done since the machinery used is not indicated in either report. Again, this is in both reports, and again the data matches in both reports.

    33) “˜Hair width’ is the diameter of the hair in micrometers, and is available in both reports.

    34) “˜Hair marrow’ is found only in the SAL report, and presumably describes the condition of the very core of the hair.

    35) “˜Hair end condition’ indicates whether the end of the hair is “˜cut’, a “˜point’, frayed or otherwise.  This is found in both reports.

    36) “˜Bulb phase’ relates to the particular phase of hair growth, with DNA apparently present in the hair bulb only during the initial growth phases of the hair. This too is found in both reports.

    37) “˜Hair remarks’ are any comments related to hair samples.

    38) Lastly, the “˜remarks’ column contains my notes on a particular sample or test, indicating discrepancies or explanations of what I was able to understand.

    As noted above, the SAL report does not contain data for all the samples. Per Dr. Gino’s testimony in the Massei trial on 9/26/09, additional SAL sheets were apparently released that indicate that TMB tests were done on the luminol samples at the cottage and that these tests were negative. However it should be noted that TMB is less sensitive than luminol, so it is possible that a luminol sample could be in blood, which however is too diluted to be registered by a TMB test.




    6. More Commentary On the DNA Extracted From Blood

    1) DNA is only found in white blood cells, not red blood cells

    2) The luminol reacts with the iron in red blood cells, not white blood cells

    3) Red blood cells outnumber white blood cells by roughly 600 to 1

    4) Even if DNA is found it may be not usable for comparison

    So just because there is a positive luminol or TMB result does not mean that DNA can be found.

    7. More Commentary On The Resulting Statistics

    At the bottom of the spreadsheet are some interesting statistics, which I won’t reiterate here, except to note a few things.

    a) 227 different objects or site objects were sampled/ obtained for analysis. 30 of these were not analyzed at all. From the remaining 197 objects and site objects sampled, 484 separate tests were set up for analysis, with 93 of these consisting of hair analysis. Of these 484 tests, 193 of them yield DNA data useful for comparison (40%).

    b) Of the 193 tests that were “˜successful’, 100 tests yielded DNA compatible only with Ms. Kercher’s DNA (over 50%- again keep in mind their may have been other DNA but it may have been too small or too fragmented to be useful for comparison). Nine additional tests (comprising seven samples) yielded DNA compatible with Ms. Kercher’s DNA mixed with either Knox’s, Guede’s or Sollecito’s DNA. 27 tests had DNA compatible with Guede’s DNA; 18 tests had DNA compatible with Knox’s DNA; 11 more tests had DNA compatible with Sollecito’s DNA. Nine other tests yielded DNA compatible with a mixture of Knox’s and Sollecito’s DNA. 17 tests yielded DNA of unknown men and women (i.e. unmatchable by Dr. Stefanoni), and two tests were of samples obtained from Lumumba.

    c) Of the nine tests yielding Ms. Kercher’s DNA mixed with others, five of these yielded DNA compatible with a mixture of Kercher’s and Knox’s DNA. They were all samples found in blood or potential blood- notably: three in the bathroom, one on the corridor floor in a luminol revealed bloody footprint, one in a luminol revealed blood stain in Romanelli’s room.

    d) Returning to the discussions about contamination, it is notable that, whether the contamination occurred during site collection or in the lab, one might expect to find bits of contamination occurring here and there over 193 tests. Yet nearly all the arguments involve contamination about two samples, out of 193 tests. Over 50% of the tests that had useful DNA yielded Ms. Kercher’s DNA. If site collection, transport and/or lab procedures were so poor, one would expect to find Ms. Kercher’s DNA in other places as well. Yet very few samples have her DNA mixed with others, and conversely, very few other samples have other mixed DNA. Only nine samples have mixes of Sollecito and Knox’s DNA, eight of which were all obtained at Sollecito’s apartment or from Sollecito’s things (including a pocket knife), and one was obtained from a cigarette butt at the cottage. If contamination was so rampant, why does it occur on only two samples out of 193, (and curiously only on the two most damning samples)?

    e) Continuing along the same lines, 118 samples were obtained from Sollecito’s apartment. Of these, 49 were not analyzed, (many were hairs not having bulbs in the right phase). Of the remaining 66 samples that were analyzed, only one, the one the blade of the kitchen knife, had Ms. Kercher’s DNA. And 41 yielded no usable DNA. So if there was contamination, or worse, direct framing of evidence by the lab, certainly there would be more of Ms. Kercher’s DNA amongst those 66 samples, in order to achieve an ironclad case. Yet there is only one sample out of 66 that had Ms. Kercher’s DNA.

    f) Similarly, 224 tests were done on objects taken from the upper apartment. Of these 56 were not analyzed for DNA and an additional 61 that were analyzed, did not yield anything useful. Of the remaining 107 tests, only 3 had Sollecito’s DNA (a trace on the cigarette butt, and a trace on the bra clasp having Sollecito’s DNA as well as his Y chromosome.) Surely if there was rampant contamination or worse, direct framing of evidence, one would expect to find more of Sollecito’s DNA in Ms. Kercher’s room. Yet only one sample had his DNA and Y chromosome- the bra clasp.

    g) Conversely, it is rather odd that Sollecito’s car was sampled in 16 locations (actually 19 samples were taken but only 16 analyzed), and none of those samples revealed his DNA. Did he ever drive his car?

    8. And Finally More Commentary About The Hairs

    Guede had black hair. From photos of Nov 2, 2007, Knox had blonde hair and Sollecito had chestnut to light chestnut hair. Meredith Kercher had chestnut to reddish chestnut hair.

    93 hairs were found and analyzed. Seven of these were either animal hair or fibers. The remaining 86 hairs were, per the SAL report, all human. Seven of these hairs were black in color. Of the seven, six were short (4 cm or less) and one was long. Of the six short black hairs, four were found on the duvet covering Ms. Kercher, one was found on her mattress cover, and one was found on a sponge (containing fourteen other hairs) at Sollecito’s apartment. It is very likely these short black hairs were Guede’s, and if so, how it one of his hairs get on a sponge at Sollecito’s apartment.

    Similarly, 21 blonde hairs were found, ranging from 4 cm to 20 cm. Of these, fifteen were found at Sollecito’s apartment, either on a sponge in the kitchen, or on a sweater. The other six were found at the cottage, with three being found on the duvet, one found inside the small bathroom sink, one found on a mop, one found on Ms. Kercher’s purse and one found on Ms. Kercher’s mattress cover.

    Assuming the blonde hairs were Knox’s hair, it is difficult to imagine how they might wind up on Ms. Kercher’s purse and mattress cover.

    There were four light chestnut hairs found. One, measuring 9 cm, was found on the kitchen sponge at Sollecito’s apartment. The other three light chestnut hairs were found on Ms. Kercher’s bra (2 cm), sweat jacket (7.5 cm) and the towel found under Ms. Kercher’s body (20 cm).

    35 chestnut colored hairs were found, ranging from 1.5 to 30 cm in length. The vast majority were in Ms. Kercher’s bedroom. Two chestnut colored hairs (5 cm and 8 cm) were on the kitchen sponge at Sollecito’s house. It should be noted that three chestnut colored hairs yielded Ms. Kercher’s DNA, measuring 15, 18 and 23 cms.

    So even from the hair evidence, it seems that hair having Knox and Sollecito’s color were on Ms. Kercher’s more intimate objects, while Guede’s and Ms. Kercher’s hair apparently were on a sponge in the kitchen at Sollecito’s apartment. In other words, an object used in a clean-up, and in a room that also had five luminol revealed samples.

    Even the hair evidence points to Guede, Sollecito and Knox having acted together in the murder of Ms. Kercher.


    Thursday, September 25, 2014

    Analysis #2 Of Testimony Of Dr Chiacchiera, Organized Crime Section: Discounting Any Lone Wolf

    Posted by Cardiol MD



    Dr Chiacchiera (talking) with his team explaining reason for charges in another case

    Overview Of This Series

    In 2007 Dr Chiacchiera was the Director of the Organized Crime Section and the Deputy Director of the Flying Squad.

    He was one of the most senior and experienced law enforcement officers to testify at the trial.  His testimony and his cross examination by the defenses occupied a lot of time of the court late in February 2009. He covered the following ground.

      (1) He found Knox and Sollecito uncooperative when he asked them questions.

      (2) Saw evidence contradicting any lone burglar theory and indicating that the “break-In” to Romanelli’s room was faked.

      (3) Phone records and the police investigation into the accused phone activity the night of the murder.

      (4) Discovery of pornographic magazines at Sollecito’s house.

      (5) Details of how the large knife, Exhibit 36, was collected from Sollecito’s and the evidence that it is the murder knife.

    All the translation is by the ever-dedicated main poster ZiaK. This series is highlighting some key portions. Here is the full 50-page transcript which will be posted in the trial testimony area of McCall’s great Wiki.

    This post continues analysis of the evidence that the lone burglar/lone wolf theory was not credible to those that were first on the crime scene and that the “break-In” to Filomena Romanelli’s room was to them obviously faked.

    (GCM=Giancarlo Massei; MC=Manuela Comodi; MaCh=Marco Chiacchiera; GB=Giulia Bongiorno; DD=Donatella Donati; CP=Carlo Pacelli; LG=Luciano Ghirga; CDV=Carlo Dalla Vedova; FM=Francesco Maresca)

    Public Prosecutor Comodi [MC] Leads Testimony

    Judge Massei [GCM}:  Excuse me a moment, just to give some guidelines, but of the evaluations that the witness is expressing, obviously it’s not that they can be taken account of, however we will acquire them [for the trial files] in order to understand the investigation activities, the appropriateness of the investigations that were carried out, directed in one way or in another, there you go. However, maybe, “¦ there you go, yes, maybe if we can manage to keep with the bare essentials this will help everybody.

    {Court proceedings seem to have been diverted into a free-for-all colloquy, with multiple participants chiming-in, and creating confusion. Court-President, GCM, now politely intervenes, apparently trying to restore order, ruling that the professional evaluations made by the witness, testified-to by the witness, should be admitted for the trial files. The appropriateness of the witness's evaluations can be dealt with separately and later.}

    Manuela Comodi [MC}:  Well, in short, they were called “¦ they are the only ones who can describe the whole progression of the investigations - Dr Profazio and Dr Chiacciera ““ because they are directors, they are the only ones who will come to describe for me, thus, what was the progression of the investigations. Clearly, in order to pass from one investigative act to another rather than “¦ and the choice of the subsequent investigative acts. It’s clear that they have to describe, in order to make a complete reasoning, even the lines of thought that, as Dr Chiacchiera said, it sometimes happens that they make. However, one point: apart from the break-in, apart from the broken window, there are “¦ did you acquire further elements that corroborated the idea that there had been a burglary? Nothing from Romanelli’s room had been carried off? Valuable things had been taken?

    {Examiner acknowledges Court's admonition, argues importance of her witness's testimony, and segués into triple-Q addressed to witness re elements corroborating idea of burglary.}

    Dr Chiacchiera [MaCh]:  This ... in fact, in the progress ...

    {Witness begins to answer, but is interrupted by Examiner}

    MC:  Was a declaration/complaint of theft made then, with a list of the things taken?

    {Examiner interrupts witness with new double-Q}

    MaCh:  In the logical progression, if I may in some way still, in summary, say what “¦.

    {Witness begins narrative response but is interrupted by Court}

    GCM:  Say the objective facts, if you have “¦.

    {Court interrupts witness, beginning to admonish him to respond by testifying to objective facts, but is itself interrupted by witness}

    MaCh:  Nothing disappeared, so a burglar would have had difficulty “¦

    {Witness answers 3rd Q of Examiner's above triple Q, but then launches into a narrative beginning: "so…", but Court interrupts}

    GCM:  Excuse me, nothing had disappeared? Before all else, what thing .... you knew what things were in that room that did not disappear?

    {Court interrupts, questioning basis for witness's statement that "Nothing disappeared"}

    MaCh:  Yes, because, shall we say, the investigation elements that then subsequently emerged, allowed us to deduce that from Romanelli’s room absolutely nothing disappeared. There was a complete mess/chaos, but nothing disappeared from Romanelli’s room. And this is another element to [lead us] to obviously deduce that the desired hypothesis of a burglar and of a theft was objectively “¦ But then the burglar does not [sic] close the door and throw away the key. The burglar does not cover the victim. The burglar “¦

    {Witness answers Court's Q, with narrative explanation including reference to "the key", and Court interrupts}

    GCM:  Excuse me. They key. What is this detail about the key? What is it?

    {Court asks Q simple Q re "the key" - with apparent transcriptional error: "They key"}

    MaCh:  There was no key.

    {Witness answers Court's Q}

    GCM:  There was no key where?

    {Court asks simple Q}

    MaCh:  Those who entered into the inside of the house first found the door closed. A closed door that then aroused the suspicions and that then gave concern and then it was decided to “¦ to break [it] down.

    {Witness responds to Court's Q with narrative explanation}

    GCM:  Excuse me, on [sic] Romanelli’s room there was no key?

    {Court asks another simple Q}

    MaCh:  No, I’m talking of Meredith’s room, Mr President; Meredith’s room was locked by key.
    This is another “¦ how to say, the investigative deductions that we drew from these details that emerged, also from the declarations that we gathered.

    {Witness responds to Court's Q, and informatively amplifies A}

    MC:  Was it normal that Meredith closed herself [sic. i.e. her room] by key?

    {Examiner asks witness a simple Q}

    MaCh:  No.

    {Witness gives simple A}

    MC:  And did you find the key of Meredith’s room?

    {Examiner asks witness a simple Q}

    MaCh:  No.

    {Witness gives simple A}

    MC:  So it was closed by key, but there was no key inside?

    {Examiner summarises witness's testimony re key and poses a simple Q}

    MaCh:  But there was no key inside, so that it was necessary to break down the door in order to enter. Also the almost inexplicable detail of the presence of two cellphones in a garden of a house, doesn’t tend to favour the thesis of someone who enters and who accidentally, so to speak, finds a person and then kills them, because [he] is forced to kill them because they have seen [his] face.

    {Witness responds to Q in form of confirming-repetition and amplifies A in expanded narrative-form}

    MC:  But is via Sperandio far from via della Pergola?

    {Examiner poses vague Q re proximity of 2 streets}

    MaCh:  No. And there we tried to deduce. And via Sperandio, as I said earlier, Doctoressa, is not far from the house. We discussed [this] to understand why these telephones went and ended up there “¦

    {Witness answers simply, and respectfully, introducing " the house" on one of the streets, seguéing into subject of the mobile telephones and is interrupted by the Court}

    GCM:  Excuse me. When you say it is not far from the house, can you specify at what distance? How one reaches it?

    {The Court's interruption is also vague, with double-Q, referring to an unspecified "it"}

    MaCh:  Not far from the house means that, by following a route that any Perugian knows, Mr President, one passes through a park and one arrives, let’s say, near the gateway of Porta Sant’Angelo. So for this reason, as the crow flies, how much would it be, but less [sic] “¦ three hundred, four hundred metres. But to reach it by foot from via della Pergola to via Sperandio I think that it doesn’t take more than 5, [or] 7 minutes.

    {Witness responds to Court in explanatory narrative form

    MC: But do you have to pass by via Garibaldi?

    {Examiner asks simple Q}

    MaCh:  Yes. But you can also pass through the park ““ there’s a park that then comes out right in front.

    {Witness answers Q, and amplifies his response}

    MC:  Of the villa?

    {Examiner seeks clarification of witness's response}

    MaCh:  In front of the villa, at the entry to the villa. Looking from the street that crosses with the provincial [road], the one that, shall we say, borders the villa, whoever is looking at it, I repeat, I ““ who am 44 years old, am Perugian ““ I did not know that there was a garden behind there.

    {Witness clarifies his response, amplifying further}

    MC:  And how far away is via Sperandio from via Garibaldi, corso Garibaldi?

    {Examiner asks apparently simple Q}

    MaCh:  it’s parallel. It’s very close, very very close. It’s 200 metres away, as the crow flies. I think even much less, because they are almost parallel, let’s say. Even that is something that in some way made us understand that there was an interest in getting rid of those cellphones, clearly, by whoever did that thing there.

    {Witness gives detailed response;
    See: "Just seeing police could panic the killers into instant dumping of the telephones, without even needing to know why the police were where the police were (There is no need to invoke any awareness by the phone-dumper[s] of the reason the Police were near Mrs. Lana's place - the hoax-call.). So if the killers saw flashing police-lights, or any other sign of police near Mrs. Lana's place, that sign could be enough to explain panic phone-dumping - then and there (not considering whether the phones were switched-on or switched-off)." In TJMK: "Updating Our Scenarios And Timelines #2: An Integrated Comparison Of The Timing of the Phone-Events." 6/28/2013}

    MC:  When you arrived for the first time in via della Pergola, did you enter the room of the crime?

    {Examiner asks simple Q}

    MaCh:  Immediately, no. I went in afterwards, when Dr Mignini also arrived; and later with Dr Lalli. Then I had, how to say, occasionally entered when the crime-scene inspection of the Forensic Police, of the colleagues arrived from Rome, was already begun, so late. I didn’t stop long inside the house, I say the truth, also because the measures/orders that I issued immediately were those, yes, of deducing, [of] drawing out all the investigative elements that might emerge in the immediate surroundings [and/or immediately after the facts] to seek to immediately direct the investigation activity, but also to “freeze” [sic. i.e. to solidify, or to make concrete] another aspect, which was that of hearing/questioning all the people who might tell us details on Meredith’s stay in Perugia, in general, but above all on her final hours, on her visits/visitors, everything about those who Meredith had known in some way and “¦ This was the thing that we considered logical to do precisely in relation to this, to these first investigative deductions that we drew from the [above]-described crime-scene.

    {Witness gives detailed narrative reply}

    MC:  And so that same day you were present when they began to hear/question…

    {Examiner begins preamble to presumed Q, but is interrupted}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness interrupts Examiner with witness's answer to assumed Q}

    MC:  “¦ the people [who were] acquainted with the facts.

    {Examiner completes interrupted Q-in-the-form-of-a-statement, which omits Q-mark}

    MaCh:  I was present. I did not participate personally in the examination [of witnesses], but I was present, in the sense that both with [my] colleague Profazio and with [my] other colleague from the central operative service”¦

    {Witness responds with narrative description of circumstances, but is interrupted}

    MC:  from Rome.

    {Examiner interrupts with her assumed next part of witness's response}

    MaCh:  from Rome. We began to put the pieces together, excuse my [use of] the expression; that is to say all the “¦ all the elements that emerged from the examination of witnesses, were checked, were gradually verified/cross-checked.  Both with cross-checks that enlarged the group of witnesses, of the people to be heard/questioned, and with the checking of the alibis of many people, [as well as] with a technical activity that was carried out.

    {Witness confirms Examiner's assumption, and completes his narrative description of circumstances}

    MC:  That is to say?

    {Examiner enquires as to witness's reference to indefinite "technical activity"}

    MaCh:  A technical activity. A bugging activity was carried out. There was also an activity carried out also for the cross-checking of the phone [activity] printouts. There was an activity to understand also the cross-checking of the [phone] cells. There was a very wide-range activity carried out. Without excluding, I repeat, all also [sic] ... shall we say, the minor hypotheses. For example, the news arrived of a Maghrebi who had been in a rush to wash his own clothes in a launderette, not too far from the scene of the crime. This piece of information was excluded for a very simple reason, because from the first results of the investigative inquiries, he had arrived there in the early afternoon, but instead, in the early afternoon of the day before her death, Meredith was still alive [sic]. Because from the witness examinations we had determined that the last person who had seen her alive, saw her in the late afternoon. After which, we also did another series of checks relative to the one [sic] that there was a strange telephone call that the people who found the cellphones in the famous villa, the beautiful one on via Sperandio, had received in the evening. However, we had, how to say, understood that it was a case of a boy who had made a call from Terni and of a strange coincidence, but absolutely irrelevant for the investigation activity. Indeed, we made checks on all the hospitals in order to evaluate, to check, whether maybe there were [patients] who had presented blade/cutting wounds that in some way might have been compatible with a wound, let’s say, or at any rate with a reaction by the victim. Only one had presented, it was a [person] from Foligno who, [while] cutting salami, had cut their hand during the trip back from an away-game with Foligno ““ he was a football fan. Nothing else. So no investigative hypothesis was rejected. It was, obviously, because this is how it is done, and thus I believe that it is logic, we began to discuss/think in a certain way, because we had deduced from all this scen, another series of further elements, that is to say that the person “¦.

    {Witness responds with prolonged narrative re "technical activity" and seems to pause}

    MC:  Speak. Don’t be afraid to say it.

    {Examiner urges witness to continue}

    MaCh:  No, no. I’m not afraid.

    {Witness argues with Examiner}

    MC:  That is, let’s say, when was it that the investigations turned to, [started] to focus on today’s defendants?

    {Examiner asks simple Q}

    MaCh:  When on the evening of “¦ they did not focus on today’s defendants, that is to say, progressively the analysis of the investigative elements made us “¦ made us start, even us, to suspect. Because going into a house, finding a [sic] door of Meredith’s room closed, a [sic] door of the apartment opened, faeces in the toilet [bowl], while I take a shower, a series of bloody prints”¦

    {Witness responds in narrative form and is interrupted}

    MC:  However the faeces were in which of the two bathrooms?

    {Examiner interrupts witness with clarifying Q}

    MaCh:  Of the bathrooms. Me, if I take a shower in a bathroom where there are faeces, instinctively I flush the toilet, in short.

    {Witness makes non-responsive subjective statement and is interrupted}

    MC:  Yes, but the faeces were in the other bathroom.

    {Examiner engages witness in argument}

    MaCh:  Yes, yes, I understood. However, in short, in some way it comes instinctively, no?, to flush the toilet? The fact is that “¦.

    {Witness joins argument and is interrupted}

    GCM:  Excuse me, do you know how many bathrooms there were in the house?

    {Court interrupts argument with simple Q}

    MaCh:  Two.

    {Witness ignores actual Q and responds with answer to assumed follow-up Q}

    GCM:  Two bathrooms. Excuse me, please. Do you know that a shower was taken?

    {Court asks another simple Q, using vernacular ref. to whether a person used the shower, rather than that the the shower device was taken away.}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness answers Court's actual Q}

    GCM:  How do you know?

    {Court asks simple follow-on Q}

    MaCh:  I know because it is a thing that I cannot, I believe, report because it was “¦.

    {Witness seems to answer in non-responsive, subjective narrative form, and is interrupted}

    GCM:  But you checked”¦?

    {Court seeks objective answer to his simple Q}

    MaCh:  I am trying to be very very careful.

    {Witness hints that he has reasons for apparent evasion}

    Giulia Bongiorno [GB]:  Mr President, we are talking of nothing.

    {Sollecito's lawyer chimes in with distracting comment}

    GCM:  Excuse me, Attorney.

    {Court appears to admonish GCM not to chime-in without specified legal-objection}

    MaCh:  Well, the main point [is] that very slowly we began to understand that there were strong inconsistencies in the revelations that were made. And there were behaviours that on the part of above all, indeed exclusively, of Sollecito and Knox, appeared to us as [being], at the very least, particular. Behaviours both immediately after the event ““ a sort of impatience/irritability shown [with regard to] the investigation activity that we were carrying out, and obviously we could not but ask [NdT: i.e. “we had to ask”] those who were close to Meredith [about] elements that we considered useful, even necessary, in order to continue the investigation activity.

    {Witness launches into apparent justification for his evasiveness}

    MC:  Excuse me if I interrupt you. I’ll just make a few precise questions, thus: you checked, let’s say, let’s call them alibis, even if it’s a term that’s very so [sic] from American TV films, but in any case [it’s] understandable”¦ Did you check the alibis of the people closest, let’s say, to Meredith?

    {Examiner, after preamble, asks relatively simple Q}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness answers Q as phrased}

    MC:  In particular, did you check the alibis of the young men from the [apartment on] the floor below?

    {Examiner asks simple Q}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness answers Q as phrased}

    MC:  Results?

    {Examiner poses Q in casual form}

    MaCh:  Positive for them, in the sense that they were at home, in their own home, that is to say their respective houses, because they were here for reasons of study, so they were not present in Perugia during the days when “¦

    {Witness responds with allusive casual A, begins to amplify, but is interrupted}

    MC:  Because they had left for “¦

    {Examiner interrupts with suggestion for next part of witness's response}

    MaCh:  Yes, for the All Souls’ Day long-weekend, let’s call it that.

    {Withess reacts to Examiner's suggestion by stating reason for upcoming week-end absence, but not stating week-end destination}

    MC:  Did you check the alibi of Mezzetti and of Romanelli?

    {Examiner asks double Q}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness answers for both Qs}

    MC:  Results?

    {Examiner poses Q in casual form}

    MaCh:  The result in this case also [is that] Mezzetti and Romanelli were not there, so “¦

    {Witness gives clear Answer, apparently begins explanation, but is interrupted}

    GCM:  Excuse me, can you say what checks you did?

    {Court interrupts witness's testimony to ask Q re witness's method}

    MaCh:  We carried out a whole series of checks that brought us to evaluate, establish, that these persons were not present in the premises that evening.

    {Witness ignores Court's Q as phrased and answers anticipated next Q}

    MC:  Let’s say, I imagine that you heard/questioned them.

    {Examiner makes statement-in-form-of-Q with ?-mark omitted}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness answers presumed Q}

    MC:  Did they tell you where they were that evening, what they did that evening”¦?

    {Examiner seems to interrupt and asks double-Q}

    MaCh:  And in effect, we assessed/considered that “¦

    {Witness ignores Q-as-phrased and is apparently interrupted}

    MC:  And you ascertained that in effect “¦

    {Examiner apparently interrupts A and continues his interrupted multiple Q}

    MaCh:  That it was true what they had told us. I can report on the circumstance.

    {Witness seems to continue his interrupted answer and offers to expand his narrative.
    Q &A cycle is confused and confusing because of repeated multiple Qs, instead of orderly single Q & A}

    MC:  Did you check the alibi of Amanda Knox and of Raffaele Sollecito? Was there a comparison between the declarations of Amanda Knox and of Raffaele Sollecito with regard to the night of the murder, and what you were able to compare, shall we say, objectively, through the other declarations, through the phone records?

    {Examiner asks multiple Qs}

    MaCh:  Through the phone records and through the checks [that were], shall we say, objective, it was found that what Sollecito had declared was not truthful because there was a phone call that was never received [i.e. answered] by Sollecito at 23:00 hours. Because it turned out that there was no interaction with the computer, but I believe that this “¦ as declared [sic]. But above all there was an absolute incongruity of the “¦.

    {Witness summarizing findings wrt phone records, is interrupted}

    GCM:  There now. Excuse me. Maybe we will not ask the question in these terms: following the declarations, on which you cannot report, that you got from and that were given by Amanda Knox and Sollecito Raffaele, what type of investigations you carried out”¦

    {Court interrupts to restrict Qs but is interrupted}

    MaCh:  We carried out ...

    {Witness interrupts Court's interruption and is interrupted}

    GCM:  ... and the outcome of these investigations. There now. This is where we’re at.

    {Court completes it's interruption, seeming to believe he has made himself clear, but confusion still reigns}

    MaCh:  Well, in summary ...

    {Witness begins a summary, but is interrupted}

    GCM:  Following the declarations given by them, you had “¦ With regard to Sollecito Raffaele, what did you do and what [information] emerged?

    {Court interrupts witness with double-Q}

    MaCh:  It emerged that, unlike “¦

    {Witness begins to answer Court's 2nd Q, but Court interrupts}

    GCM:  What did you do, first?

    {Court repeats1st Q}

    MaCh:  We did an analysis of the telephone traffic, and from the analysis of the telephone traffic it emerged that Sollecito had absolutely not received/answered the 23:00 hours phone call as he had declared. From the analysis of the telephone traffic, there then emerged a very strange detail, in the sense that the cellphones “¦

    {Witness answers 1st Q, begins answering 2nd Q, and is interrupted by Sollecito's lawyer}

    GB:  (overlapping voices) “¦ continue with the opinions/judgements, with all the opinions/judgements.

    {Sollecito's lawyer seems to demand comprehensive testimony}

    GCM:  That which emerged.

    {Court makes seemingly cryptic statement which is probably a Q relating to witness's interrupted A to Court's 2nd Q above: "It emerged that, unlike "¦" }

    MaCh:  A detail/particular emerged ... unlike what “¦. (overlapped voices).

    {Witness resumes testimony but is interrupted, multiple voices are heard}

    GCM:  Excuse me. What emerged?

    {Court asks witness to clarify what witness was saying}
    _____________________________________________

    Here ends the Analysis of the Evidence #2, discussing that the lone burglar theory is not credible, and that “Break-In” to Romanelli’s room was faked.

    The next Post:  Analysis of the Evidence #3, will Analyse the Phone records and the police investigation into the accused phone activity the night of the murder.

     


    Monday, September 15, 2014

    Analysis #1 Of Testimony Of Marco Chiacchiera, Director, Organized Crime Section, Flying Squad

    Posted by Cardiol MD



    Dr Chiacchiera with Dr Comodi explaining reason for charges in another case

    Overview Of This Series

    Yet another vital translation which will be posted in the trial testimony areaof McCall’s great Wiki. This again is translated by the ever-dedicated main posterr ZiaK.

    Although I graduated as a medical doctor I also graduated as a lawyer, and was often in courtrooms. For this post and the rest of the Chiacchiera series I am wearing my lawyer’s hat to point out what strikes me in Prosecutor Comodi’s questions,  Marco Chiacchiera’s testimony, and the cross-examinations by defense lawyers.

    Prior Preparations And Procedures

    Under the Italian Code, before the beginning of the trial phase in Italy, the parties file a brief, detailing all evidence they want to present ““ the parties have to indicate by name every witness and precisely what these will be asked. The aims include creation of a Record of Admissible Facts.

    Also under the Italian Code, both the defendant and the prosecutor can cross-examine each other’s witnesses. The Judge may choose not to admit any testimony that appears patently superfluous, reject irrelevant or improper or irregular questions ““ such as leading questions, and Inadmissible Hearsay ““ and also ask questions to the witnesses and experts.

    Ground Covered In Dr Chiacchiera’s Testimony

      (1) He found Knox and Sollecito uncooperative when he asked them questions.

      (2) Saw evidence contradicting any lone burglar theory and indicating that the “break-In” to Romanelli’s room was faked.

      (3) Phone records and the police investigation into the accused phone activity the night of the murder.

      (4) Discovery of pornographic magazines at Sollecito’s house.

      (5) Details of how the large knife, Exhibit 36, was collected from Sollecito’s and the evidence that it is the murder knife.


    My Assessment Of This Court Exchange

    It is immediately obvious to me that this witness is a skilled witness; as such, and given his deep hands-on involvement in the immediate investigation this witness’s testimony is credible.  My assessment therefore is that this was a very good and unflinching witness and that Dr Comodi shows no signs of leading the witness or seeking other than a truthful record.

    I have seen prosecutors examine witnesses differently but dont believe the resultant record would have been superior. This would have stood up well in any American court.

    (GCM=Giancarlo Massei; MC=Manuela Comodi; MaCh=Marco Chiacchiera; GB=Giulia Bongiorno; DD=Donatella Donati; CP=Carlo Pacelli; LG=Luciano Ghirga; CDV=Carlo Dalla Vedova; FM=Francesco Maresca)

    Public Prosecutor Comodi [MC]

    MC:  Dr Chiacchiera, you carried out your duties where, when, at what moment of the events?

    MaCh:  I was and am the director of the Organized Crime Section of the Flying Squad and I am the vice-director of the Flying Squad. The Organized Crime Section is a branch of the Flying Squad that deals with “¦ the term, I think that in this place [i.e. the court] it is enough to say that it deals with organized crime. However, I am also the vice-director of the Flying Squad, for which [reason] I deal with, in the case of need, everything that is necessary [for] the various aspects.

    {Witness supplies 5 items of relevant information that Examiner should elicit at beginning of examination.}

    MC:  Can you tell the Court how you became aware of events, who called you, when you became involved?

    {Examiner asks another triple-question}

    MaCh:  Yes.

    {Witness simply answers question as worded by Examiner}

    MC:  For now, start to tell us, then maybe I will intervene [NdT: i.e. interrupt with further questions] if necessary.

    {Examiner, asking no Q, instructs witness, suggesting provisional forbearance if witness does not make interruptions necessary.}

    MaCh:  On the fateful day, at around 12:33, I had gone to the cemetery with my mother. The operations room called me immediately after the discovery of the body.

    {Witness begins appropriate narrative response, but Examiner interrupts}

    MC:  So the 113? [NdT: 113 is the Italian State Police emergency number]

    {Examiner interrupts witness with a Q, suggesting witness's receipt of call from an emergency number, but suggests wrong source-number}

    MaCh:  110. The operations room of the Questura called me, and informed me of the happenings in an initially obviously very summarized manner. They said to me that there was a suspicious death, a young woman who lived in via della Pergola. I rushed to the place directly in my mother’s car. I didn’t stop by at the Questura, I didn’t go to get the service [i.e. police] car. I got myself taken to via della Pergola. We took about 15 minutes from the cemetery to there, ten fifteen minutes. In the meantime, I phoned the deputy Commissioner Napoleoni, in the temporary absence of the director, Dr Profazio, who arrived later, who was “¦ he was enjoying a period of leave, and with deputy Commissioner Napoleoni we arrived almost at the same time. We arrived almost simultaneously at the premises. Forensics, too, arrived almost at the same time at the premises.

    {Witness supplies correct source-number and resumes interrupted narrative response}

    MC:  The Perugia Forensics?

    {Examiner questions witness's correction, as if to verify and to ensure accuracy of court's record}

    MaCh:  The Perugia Forensics, I highlight, yes.

    {Witness emphatically agrees with Examiner's question}

    MC:”‹[They were] alerted by you, or ...?

    {Examiner pauses mid-Q, inviting witness to guess complete Q, or is interrupted}

    MaCh:”‹Alerted by the operations room, and also alerted by me.
    ,
    {Witness responds to invitation, or interrupts with A to assumed complete Q}

    MC:”‹So you arrive, and who do you find?

    {Examiner's 1st simple Q.}

    MaCh: “‹I found there ... there was already deputy Commissioner Napoleoni, there were also a few of Meredith’s co-tenants. There was Amanda Knox, there was Raffaele Sollecito. There were two young men who were, I believe, the friend of the boyfriend of one of the co-tenants. In short, there were a few people who had already been inside the house. There was the Postal Police.

    {Witness answers Q in reasonable detail}

    MC:”‹In the person of”¦?

    {Examiner seeks more detail re specific Postal Police Personnel}

    MaCh: “‹Battistelli and another of Battistelli’s colleagues. Inspector Battistelli, with whom there was immediately a discussion in order to understand what were the reasons for his intervention there, because it is not normal to find the Postal [police] in a crime of this sort. And he explained to me immediately what was the reason for his intervention. The origin of the, shall we way of his intervention, was due to the discovery of a pair of cellphones in a period of time, I believe, of an hour, [or] two, I don’t recall clearly, that were one in the name of one of Meredith’s co-tenants and one in the name of, later it [sic] “¦ I mean the SIM [card], obviously, the cellphones’ SIMs, the cards, they were in the name of a co-tenant and the other in Meredith’s [name]. The co-tenant, however, then told us, we then ascertained that both of the cellphones in fact were used by Meredith. And already that was, how shall we say, a first detail on which we began to reflect because, in fact, that was an element than in some way made us [become] immediately occupied/involved from an investigative point of view.

    {Witness responds to Q and includes relevant amplifying narrative, anticipating probable future Qs re cellphones}

    MC: “‹So, excuse me, also if the Court already, shall we say, knows this, because others have reported it, on this point however, where were the cellphones found?

    {Examiner seems to interrupt with simple Q to clarify specific relevant fact not yet reached}

    MaCh:”‹Inside the garden of a villa that is in via Sperandio.

    {Witness responds appropriately}

    MC:”‹In via Sperandio.

    {Probably a Q, but implicitly inviting more specificity}

    MaCh: “‹A villa that ... I am Perugian, [and] honestly, I didn’t even know there was a villa there. I’m Perugian, and I swear that I would have sworn [sic] that behind there was a wood.

    {Witness flounders, seems unable to be more specific}

    MC:”‹A field

    {Probably a Q, but implicitly inviting more specificity}

    MaCh: “‹It [was] the first time that I went in behind there. Instead, I see a marvelous old mansion with an enormous garden that gives ... that is almost adjacent to the street ““ the street that leads towards Ponte Rio. Anyone from Perugia understands me maybe.

    {Witness seems to be in informal conversational mode}

    MC: “‹From the structure of the fencing/enclosure, could you tell, shall we say, whether it was possible to throw these cellphones from the street, or whether it was necessary to enter the garden itself?

    {Examiner engages witness, and asks Q to clarify how cellphones got into that garden}

    MaCh: “‹Yes, obviously, we checked that. In fact, immediately, in short, the detail that seemed, how shall we say, of great investigative interest was that [very point], besides other details that I will go [into] a bit [sic], so to speak, also to give the impression of what the immediate impact was that we saw in the moment when we found ourselves in a situation of this type. So, deputy Napoleoni immediately entered inside the house in order to check it for herself. I did it [entered] shortly afterwards, also because [as] you will imagine that in that moment whoever was there had to notify all those who [sic], amongst whom Dr Mignini who was the Public Prosecutor on duty, and immediately give orders so that the correct checks are carried out. Because it was not just a crime scene that had to be analysed immediately: there also had to be, how shall we say, correlated with the information that we had got from via Sperandio ““ because the entry of the Postal [police in the case] originated with via Sperandio. And so we immediately asked ourselves: “Ah, what are these cellphones belonging to poor Meredith doing inside the garden of a villa?” And then And then immediately after, we asked ourselves, obviously, what might be the profile of the possible, or probable, murderer, and we discussed/talked about the crime scene. The crime scene immediately seemed fairly strange to us, if you wish [NdT: literally “if we wish” in Italian, but meaning the same as “shall we say”, “if you wish”, “so to speak” etc.]

    {Witness responds to Q with detailed narrative}

    MC:”‹Why?

    {Examiner asks ambiguous Q, probably wrt crime scene seeming "fairly strange "}

    MaCh:”‹Because the door did not show”¦ the entry door to the villa did not show signs of break-in. The we checked “¦

    {Witness seems to decipher ambiguity correctly, begins narrative response, but is interrupted by Examiner}

    MC:”‹We are not talking about the villa on via Sperandio obviously?

    {Examiner interrupts with Q, apparently not comprehending Witness's narratives}

    MaCh: “‹For the love of god! It was called a “villa” “¦ (overlap of voices), let’s say the house, of the house on via della Pergola there was no forcing/break-in. We found a forcing on the window. The window is this one, on the side of the house. I don’t know if you’ve seen the house? Anyhow, it is this one on the side of the house that can be seen immediately when you come down the slope from the gate. Logically reconstructing the thing, a hypothetical prowler [NdT: literally “ill-intentioned person”] who entered the house, breaking the glass with a rock - because inside the room, which was Romanelli’s room, which was the, shall we say, hypothetical arena of the entry, was completely in utter chaos. For that reason, what should we have hypothesized? That the hypothetical prowler took a rock, managed to throw the rock; the shutters, the external ones, the external shutters were not “¦

    {Witness is exasperated at Examiner's apparent incomprehension, is repeating his previous testimony, but is interrupted by Examiner}

    MC:”‹The dark-green wooden ones?

    {Examiner interrupts with Leading Q re colour of external shutters. Now begins a confused and confusing colloquy. The arrangement of Filomena Romanelli's window, with Outside, and Inside Shutters, the Broken-Glass-Frame in-between, and the glass-splinters on the window-sill is complicated and needs a picture-exhibit that the witness can refer-to; this is apparently not provided, leading to the confusions}

    MaCh:”‹The dark-green wooden ones were half shut, for which reason [he] must have had an aim like “Pecos Bill” [NdT: a cartoon Wild West cowboy], takes aim and throws that rock, smashes the window. After, he climbs up and does a turn on the little slope, and has to clamber up towards the window on the smooth surface, it seems to me, that from the ground up to the window there are two and a half metres-three [metres]. And then would have said: “bah, in short” [sic]. Yeah, well, the thing seemed to us…. in short, the first hypothesis that the investigator normally does, finds a level of unlikelihood of this kind of happening. After which, we looked at the house and we saw that an entry of a potential prowler [ill-intentioned person], still reasoning on the hypothesis”¦

    {Witness amplifies narrative response but is interrupted by Examiner}

    MC:”‹Of theft.

    {Examiner inappropriately interrupts, incorrectly guessing what witness was about to say}

    MaCh: “‹Of theft ending badly. Of theft that then degenerates because the burglar in some way thinks that he will find no-one in the house and instead finds a person, and then it degenerates “¦ We saw that there were easier means of entry, without wishing to bore you, but behind the house there was the possibility of climbing in a much easier way, without being seen by people that might have passed in the road. Let’s remember that, in short, it was not very late; quite the contrary. Normally people passed there, for which reason, if [he] had done it, the thing would probably have been seen. That thing there, as an hypothesis, we didn’t immediately discount it, that’s clear, because it’s a good rule to never discount any hypothesis. But we immediately considered that it was not a priority.

    {Witness corrects Examiner's wrong guess, amplifies and seems to end narrative response}

    MC:”‹Dr Chiacchiera, I interrupt you. (The witness is shown an exhibit.)

    {Examiner, seems to acknowledge her habit of interruptions without actually interrupting, while introducing an unspecified exhibit. This introduction seems very informal, because Exhibits are normally identified by an assigned title.}

    MaCh:”‹Ah! I didn’t remember it as being so big.

    {Witness recognizes unspecified exhibit}

    MC:”‹Precisely! You saw it? This is the rock that ...

    {Examiner engages witness, stating it is "the rock".}

    MaCh:”‹Yes, but it has been some time I have not, how shall we say, yes, I saw it. Absolutely.
    However, it’s big, it’s huge.

    {Witness engages Examiner, commenting on how large the rock exhibit is}

    MC:”‹Do you consider that it could be this?

    {Examiner ambiguously (what are "it" & "this "?) asks witness's opinion}

    MaCh:”‹I believe so.

    {Witness seems to overlook ambiguity of Q with vague A)

    MC:"‹I try "¦

    {Examiner begins to speak but is interrupted}

    Judge Massei [GCM]:”‹How?

    {Court interrupts as if to ask Q how Examiner 'tries'}

    MC:”‹It is this. Yes, it is this one that was collected, yes, that was found.

    {Witness seems to confirm that exhibited rock is the rock found in Filomena's room}

    GCM:”‹So the rock is shown. [NdT: an “aside” for the court records?]

    {Court formally announces admission of rock-exhibit, seemingly trying to reduce confusion caused by informal dialogue}

    MaCh:”‹Inside the room where we then found the rock…
    ??:”‹But what was the question about the rock?

    {Witness amplifies that rock had been found in a room, but enquires re rock Q, exposing confusion caused by informal dialogue}

    GCM:”‹If this was the rock. And the witness said ...

    {Court begins explanation to confused witness}

    MaCh:”‹I said yes. Yes.

    {Witness interrupts Court - confusion reigns}

    GCM:”‹You saw it? You saw the rock?

    {Court asks witness 2 Qs, trying to clarify that 'it' refers to 'the rock' that witness saw.}

    MaCh:”‹Yes.

    {Witness confirms that witness had previously seen the rock introduced into court as an unlisted exhibit.}

    GCM:”‹When you saw it, where was it?

    {Court proceeds to clarify confusion re where the rock was when witness originally saw the rock}

    MaCh:”‹The rock [was] in the room of Romanelli.

    {Witness specifically testifies, for witness's first time, that when witness originally saw the rock, the rock was in Filomena Romanelli's room}

    GCM:”‹How far from the window? Can you say?

    {Court continues to seek clarification using double-Q.}

    MaCh: “‹A few centimetres [NdT: “un palmo” = “a hand’s width”] from the window sill, under the window, from the wall where the window is.

    {Witness testifies clearly in answer to Court's 1st Q of above double-Q.}

    GCM:”‹So from the internal perimeter wall, from where the window gives onto it, a “hand’s breadth”. So 20 centimetres…

    {Court apparently begins to seek verification of witness's testimony, but is interrupted}

    MaCh:”‹Mr President ....

    {Witness begins to Interrupt Court}

    GCM:”‹... away from it approximately.

    {Court finishes his interrupted statement}

    MaCh:”‹Yes.

    {Witness agrees with Court's completed statement}

    GCM:”‹And this is the rock. You remember it.

    {Court states his understanding in form of Qs.}

    MaCh:”‹Yes, yes, yes, yes. That is the rock.

    {Witness impatiently agrees with Court's understanding}

    MC:”‹At least as far as size and colour [are concerned], it corresponds thus to the one that was collected [as evidence].

    {Examiner makes statements in form of Q, seeking verification of resemblance of exhibit-rock to original rock}

    MaCh:”‹At least as far as size and colour [are concerned], it absolutely corresponds. If it was collected, I think that ...

    {Witness begins narrative agreement with statements of Examiner, but is apparently interrupted by Examiner}

    MC: “‹Very well. WITNESS [sic? Should be MaCh?] and Romanelli’s room was a complete shambles. The clothes were on the floor, the glass was strangely on top of the clothes, the [glass] shards were strangely on top of the “¦ on the windowsill, let’s put it that way.

    {Apparent Transcriptional confusion attributing to interrupted witness narrative the interrupting .statement of Examiner}

    MC:”‹The outside one.

    {Examiner seems to amplify statement of Examiner wrt which window-shutter witness had been referring-to}

    MaCh: “‹The outside one, precisely. The one that is between the shutters and the shutters [sic. NdT: “imposte” in Italian, but this can also mean shutters, or flap, as in the inner “scuri” shutters, or he may mean the window-frame itself, with the window-panes, given his following description], the green shutters and the shutters, the broken ones in short, where the glass is. The shutters ““ the wooden ones. The rock was a bit too close with regard to the wall if I [were to] throw it from least two metres. Unless it was lobbed [i.e. thrown in a high arc]. But in that case it’s rather unlikely that it would smash the glass. For that reason, I repeat, in the context of immediate likelihood, this one “¦

    {Witness agrees with Examiner that he was referring to "The outside one", continuing with narrative of reasoning, but is interrupted by Examiner…}

    MC:”‹Yes, it’s true. These are considerations. However they are considerations, shall we say, that refer [sic], because they are reasoning/lines of thought that are formed in the “immediacy” of the events [NdT: i.e. “in the immediate aftermath”. NOTE: throughout the text, a number of speakers use “immediatezza” (lit. “immediacy”) to convey a number of meanings, from “in the immediate aftermath”, or “in the immediate surroundings”, or “very soon after”, etc. I will translate them appropriately according to the context, without further explanation of the use of “immediatezza”], in order to proceed in one direction rather than another.

    {Examiner, interrupting witness, apparently agreeing with witness's reasoning. While Examiner is apparently stating his own argumentative reservations re the possible evolution-in-time of witness's changing lines of reasoning, he is interrupted by Giulia Bongiorno, Sollecito defense lawyer:}

    Giulia Bongiorno [GB]: “‹I never like to interrupt an examination [of a witness], however if one wanted, between the Public Prosecutor’s hypotheses, to do that [sic] of demonstrating that from a ballistic point of view it is not possible, then the ballistic expert should be called.

    {GB interrupts Examiner to comment that Witness and Examiner are expressing opinions on Ballistics that require the testimony of a Ballistic Expert.}

    MC:”‹But in fact, his considerations are not the considerations of an expert: they are the considerations of an investigator who made certain deductions in the immediacy of the events.

    {Examiner argues that witness's testimony is that of an investigator's temporal train of thought.}

    MaCh:”‹It happens to us too, at times, to reason/think rationally “¦

    {Witness joins colloquy, amplifying Examiner's argument.}

    GCM:”‹These reasonings/deductions, then determined your investigative activity in one direction rather than in an “¦?

    {Court seems to invite further amplification by witness}

    MaCh: “‹Yes, obviously, Mr President. I was trying to ... (overlap of voices) it is a premiss/basis to be able to then, how shall we say, reach ““ I won’t say conclusions ““ but in order to try to understand what our way of broaching the thing was, there and then. We had, I reassert, reasoned immediately also on via Sperandio. So the first thing, I may say, [was] the unlikelihood, or at any rate it was not the top priority hypothesis, the one of a prowler/ill-intentioned person entering. The open door without signs of break-in. But above all, a young woman who is [sic] probably killed in her own room, nude or almost nude, with a wound of that type, in a lake of blood, covered with a duvet. I repeat, the door was not smashed/wrecked, there’s a broken “¦ a window broken with a thrown rock, how can I say, it’s obvious that we immediately found this situation as “¦ (overlap of voices).

    MaCh:”‹”¦ particular.

    {Witness further amplifies narrative}

    GCM:”‹You formed these considerations, and what did they lead you to?

    {Court asks simple Q.}

    MaCh: “‹That very probably the author or authors knew the person, or at any rate that the author or authors did not enter “¦ did not enter from the window-pane of that window.

    {Witness responds with his conclusion that the authors of the faked break-in did not enter from the window-pane of that window.}

    GCM: “‹Excuse me a moment, just to give some guidelines, but of the evaluations that the witness is expressing, obviously it’s not that they can be taken account of, however we will acquire them [for the trial files] in order to understand the investigation activities, the appropriateness of the investigations that were carried out, directed in one way or in another, there you go. However, maybe, “¦ there you go, yes, maybe if we can manage to keep with the bare essentials this will help everybody.

    {Court proceedings seem to have been diverted into a free-for-all colloquy, with multiple participants chiming-in, and creating confusion. Court-President, GCM, now politely intervenes, apparently trying to restore order, ruling that the professional evaluations made by the witness, testified-to by the witness, should be admitted for the trial files. The appropriateness of the witness's evaluations can be dealt with separately and later.}
    _________________________________________________

    This segment of Chiacchiera’s Testimony re the Crime Scene, which he believed had been remodeled by the criminals to dupe Investigators into believing that there had been a burglary, committed by a single criminal, is paused here because it is so prolonged.

    Analysis of Chiacchiera’s Testimony will continue in a future post.

     


    Saturday, August 02, 2014

    Questions For Knox: Why Does Book Smear Others On Drug Use, Severly Understate Your Own?

    Posted by Peter Quennell



    Once-effusive Knox book team Robert Barnett, Linda Kulman (shadow writer) and Ted Simon

    1. Previous Reporting

    Please see our previous posts here and here.

    Knox was discovered by police to have been sleeping with a dangerous drug-ring leader for drugs since she met him and had sex on a train to Perugia. That connection led them to capture him and directly helped to put him in prison.

    2. Questions For Knox & Team

    That hot potato of a book you put together and marketed for a rumored $4 million… did you exercise any due-diligence fact-checking?

    What exactly did you tell the publishers to assure them? Hard truths or truthiness? Especially as the UK and Italian publishings were halted, for legal reasons, at the very last moment. And as Knox had already served three years for lying.

    That Knox had been consorting with a drug wholesaler, Federico Martini, and sleeping with him (as she herself admitted in the diary her own team circulated) quite possibly in return for free drugs was right out in the open in court and in the Italian media way back in January 2009.

    That was even before her trial really got under way and a full four years before you put together her book deal.

    See our past three posts. Now new proof of Knox’s dangerous doings has emerged with a first published police report, and the Italian media are now all over this.

    The release in Italy of police wire-tap transcripts of conversations between Knox and this drug kingpin she was instrumental in imprisoning is said to be only a matter of time.

    So are Italian TV crimeshows featuring persons with personal knowledge of Knox’s shenanigans.

    Please take a look at these key passages in Knox’s book - your book - where she drops a small army of others in it for drug use and for unsavory measures to hide it.

    Knox heavily disguises here that her own drug doings were way, way worse. You were surely not a party to this serial misleading?

    If not, this could be just the right time to put real distance between yourself and Knox. She will unquestionably be charged with other false claims soon, and you would surely not want to be called to court as a person of interest.

    It seems only fair to warn, if you dont already know, that these Knox fibs are only a very, very, very small fraction.

    3. Twenty Book Quotes That Hide The Real Story

    They said I wasn’t the first roommate they’d interviewed. A guy they called “totally uptight” was interested in renting, until he found out they smoked””¬cigarettes and marijuana. “Are you okay with that?” Filomena asked. “I’m from Seattle. I’m laid back,” I answered. “I don’t smoke cigarettes, but I’ll share a joint.” A few minutes later they rolled one and passed it around. I inhaled deeply and relaxed.

    Around our house, marijuana was as common as pasta. I never purchased it myself, but we all chipped in. For me, it was purely social, not something I’d ever do alone. I didn’t even know how to roll a joint and once spent an entire evening trying. I’d seen it done plenty of times in both Seattle and Perugia, but it was trickier than I thought it would be. Laura babysat my efforts, giving me pointers as I measured out the tobacco and pot and tried rolling the mixture into a smokable package. I never got it right that night, but I won a round of applause for trying. Either Filomena or Laura took a picture of me posing with it between my index and middle finger, as if it were a cigarette, and I a pouty 1950s pinup.

    What I didn’t know when I arrived was that the city had the highest concentration of heroin addicts in Italy. I never heard about the high level of trafficking and drug use until I was in prison, bunking with drug dealers.

    “Do you like marijuana?” I blurted. “It is my vice,” Raffaele said. “It’s my vice, too,” I said. I loved the phrase in Italian. Raffaele looked surprised, then pleased. “Do you want to come to my apartment and smoke a joint?”  I hesitated. He was basically a stranger, but I trusted him. I saw him as a gentle, modest person. I felt safe. “I’d love to,” I said.

    When I first saw [flatmate] Laura, she was dry-eyed. She came up and hugged me and said, “I can’t believe it. I’m so sorry. I know Meredith was your friend.” Then she sat me down and said, “Amanda, this is really serious. You need to remember: do not say anything to the police about us smoking marijuana in our house.” I was thinking, You can’t lie to the police, but I considered this anxiously a moment and then said, “Okay, I haven’t yet. I won’t.”

    When we finished, a detective put me through a second round of questioning, this time in Italian. Did we ever smoke marijuana at No. 7, Via della Pergola? “No, we don’t smoke,” I lied, squirming inwardly as I did. I didn’t see that [flatmate] Laura had left me with any choice, and I felt completely trapped by her demand. I could barely breathe until the detective moved on to a new topic, and when he did, I was hugely relieved. I thought that was the end of it.  Aside from what I said about our villa’s drug habits, I told him everything I could possibly think of.

    I didn’t think I could take any more surprises, but they kept coming. Next, the police opened up a closet to reveal five thriving marijuana plants. “Does this look familiar?” they asked. “No,” I said. Despite my earlier lie about not smoking in our house, I was now telling the truth. I was stunned that the guys were growing a mini-plantation of pot. I couldn’t believe I had talked to them every day since I’d moved in six weeks earlier and they’d never mentioned it.

    She led me through the waiting room and into the same office with the two desks where I’d spent so much time. As we were walking, she looked at me, narrowing her eyes. “You said you guys don’t smoke marijuana. Are you sure you’re being honest?”  “I’m really sorry I said that.” I grimaced. “I was afraid to tell you that all of us smoked marijuana occasionally, including Meredith. We’d sometimes pass a joint around when we were chilling out with the guys or with Filomena and Laura. But Meredith and I never bought any pot; we didn’t know any drug dealers.”

    I replied to the message telling him that we’d see each other right away. Then I left the house, saying to my boyfriend that I had to go to work. Given that during the afternoon with Raffaele I had smoked a joint, I felt confused because I do not make frequent use of drugs that strong.

    It was during this conversation that Raffaele told me about his past. How he had a horrible experience with drugs and alcohol. He told me that he drove his friends to a concert and that they were using cocaine, marijuana, he was drinking rum, and how, after the concert, when he was driving his passed-out friends home, how he had realized what a bad thing he had done and had decided to change.

    We talked about his friends, how they hadn’t changed from drug-using video game players, and how he was sad for them.

    That night I smoked a lot of marijuana and I fell asleep at my boyfriend’s house. I don’t remember anything. But I think it’s possible that Raffaele went to Meredith’s house, raped her and then killed her.

    Their theory seemed to be that I knew Guede from the time Meredith and I had met with the guys downstairs in front of the fountain in Piazza IV Novembre””the night Guede told the guys I was cute. He hadn’t made an impression on me at all then. The prosecution hypothesized that, after that night, he’d gotten in touch with me, perhaps about buying drugs.

    The prosecution’s simple story was absolutely false, but it apparently rang true for the authorities. They added flourishes in the course of the trial””Meredith was smarter, prettier, more popular, neater, and less into drugs and sex than I was. For some of or all these reasons, she was a better person, and I, unable to compete, had hated her for it.

    Laura and Filomena had always bought the marijuana for the villa’s personal use. But when Filomena shrugged her shoulders helplessly on the stand, she made it seem that the only reason marijuana was in the house was because of me.

    When Mignini brought up names of guys who’d come over, Laura replied, “Those are my friends.” When he asked if anyone in the villa smoked marijuana, she said, “Everyone.”

    Carlo [Dalla Vedova], who’d never sugarcoated my situation, said, “These are small-town detectives. They chase after local drug dealers and foreigners without visas. They don’t know how to conduct a murder investigation correctly. Plus, they’re bullies. To admit fault is to admit that they’re not good at their jobs. They suspected you because you behaved differently than the others. They stuck with it because they couldn’t afford to be wrong.”

    In Quito, where she lived, Laura [another Laura, in Capanne, not flatmate Laura] had dated an Italian who invited her to Naples for vacation and bought her a new suitcase. When she landed at the Aeroporto Internazionale di Napoli, it was not her boyfriend who met her plane but the customs police. They arrested her for the cocaine they found sewn into the luggage’s lining. The boyfriend, it turned out, had not only turned her into a drug mule, but had lied about his name. He was untraceable. She was sentenced to nearly five years in prison.

    Curatolo was recalled as a witness, but he came under different circumstances. The onetime homeless man was now in prison himself, on drug charges.... He confirmed that he was now in prison, adding, “I haven’t quite understood why yet.” Asked if he’d used heroin in 2007, he answered, “I have always used drugs. I want to clarify that heroin is not a hallucinogen.

    Curatolo didn’t know what he was talking about, poor guy. If my life didn’t depend on his being wrong, I’d just feel bad for him,” I reported. ““The broadcasts here are saying that he’s a confused drug addict!” someone cried.


    Tuesday, July 29, 2014

    Italian Reporting Of Prolonged Knox/Cocaine-Dealer Connection; Media Digging

    Posted by Peter Quennell




    1. How Drug Use Was Addressed At Trial

    The story of Knox’s drug use clearly has legs. But whoever is driving it, the trial prosecution is not - they are simply sitting back and watching.

    Police and prosecutors have never driven the perception that Knox and Sollecito were stoned on the night when they attacked Meredith. Judge Micheli wasnt keen on this possible “out” and besides they have never had a reason to.

    It was in fact the defenses who drove the drug-use argument. Knox admitted to police on 5-6 November 2007 to marijuana use, and so did Sollecito. He already had a minor record of cocaine possession. Both tried to use the argument at trial that they were indeed stoned. But that was only to explain major discrepancies in their statements, not to say that drugs helped to fuel the attack on Meredith.

    The defenses had an opportunity with Judge Matteini, the guiding magistrate from late 2007 though to Judge Micheli’s arraignment in October 2008, to try to seek lesser charges due to impaired capacities. But either they did not want to, or they were prevented by the families from doing so.

    At trial in 2009 the prosecution remarked that the two were suspected to have been using cocaine (the symptoms seem to us pretty obvious) but the defence simply shrugged at this and did not contend it.

    Judge Massei never mentions amphetamines. Two defense experts were brought in to try to convince the Massei court that the admitted drug use had fogged their clients’ brains. Judge Massei simply recorded this doubtful claim in his sentencing report. He gave the perps no breaks based on this reasoning.

    ]page 393] On the effects of drugs of the type used by Amanda and by Raffaele, such as hashish and marijuana, [we] heard the testimony of Professor Taglialatela who, while underlining the great subjective variability (page 211, hearing of 17 July 2009) specified that the use of such substances has a negative influence on the cognitive capacity and causes alterations of perception (pages 201 and 207) and of the capacity to comprehend a situation (page 218).

    In his turn, Professor Cingolani, who together with Professor Umani Ronchi and Professor Aprile, had also dealt with the toxicological aspect (see witness report lodged on 15 April 2008, pages 26 and following), responding to the question he had been asked as to whether the use of drugs lowers inhibitions replied: “šThat is beyond doubt”› (page 163 hearing of 19 September 2009), while correlating that effect to the habits of the person [on] taking the drugs. Raffaele Sollecito’s friends had furthermore stated that such substances had an effect of relaxation and stupor.

    2. New Reporting On Knox/Drug-Dealer Connection

    Below is the new Giallo report on a connection between Knox and drug-dealers kindly translated by our main poster Jools. Note that the main drug dealer Frederico Martini (who is “F” below) and others were convicted back in 2011 and the connection to Knox was reported then in the Italian press, though not in the UK and US press.

    The main new fact here is that Giallo has the dealers’ names. Giallo makes clear it obtained the names legitimately from open police records, not from the prosecutors back at trial.  Dr Mignini merely takes note of the names which Giallo itself provided and he doubted that Knox would now become truth-prone.

    Clamorous [Sensational/Scoop]

    The American woman already convicted to 28 years for the murder of her friend Meredith.

    A NEW LEAD, LINKED TO DRUGS, PUTS AMANDA KNOX IN TROUBLE

    The woman was hanging around a circle of hashish and cocaine traffickers. One of them had intimate relation with her. Another, a dangerous criminal offender, had attempted to kill his brother with a knife. Are they implicated?

    “During the course of the investigation into the murder of Meredith Kercher we have confirmed that a person whose initial is F. would occasionally supply drugs to Amanda Knox, as well as having a relationship with her supposedly of a sexual nature.” So begins an [official note] annotation of the Flying Squad police in Perugia dated January 19, 2008, two and half months after the terrible murder of the young British student Meredith Kercher. An annotation that could open a new, worst-case scenario on the Perugia murder and on one of its most talked-about protagonists, Amanda Knox, besides making it possible to convince the USA to send her back to Italy for a new trial.

    But why is this annotation so important? And who is this mysterious F. that is now entering the scene? Let’s see. When Amanda came to our country to study, in September 2007, did not yet know Raffaele Sollecito, the guy from Giovinazzo who will be accused together with her and Rudy Guede, a thief and drug dealer, of the murder of Meredith. But she soon started to hang around characters implicated in a drug ring for university students in Perugia. A particularly disturbing entourage of whose members included dangerous multi-convicted felons. The first one is precisely F. We will not disclose his full name or F’s last name, for reasons of discretion, but GIALLO knows them.

    In 2007, F. is a student of psychology from Rome, much older than Amanda. The two meet on a Milano-Florence train and decide to visit the city together in the evening, Knox having gotten rid of [her sister] she and F. smoke a joint together. “My first smoke in Italy,” says the same Amanda on MySpace, a social network site that was popular seven years ago. The two end the Florentine evening in his hotel room. Photo evidence of this new friendship was formerly on Myspace, because Amanda publishes a photo of F., half naked. An aunt commented: “Do not date strange Italian guys.”

    Once she settled in Perugia, Amanda continues to have contact with F. His number is in Amanda’s phone book, and they both frequently called each other, before and after the murder.

    F., also appears in a “list” of Italian guys she slept with which was compiled by Amanda on one of her big school notebooks and also in her autobiographical book Waiting to be heard. In the book Amanda talks about F. but changes his name and calls him Cristiano. Maybe to protect their privacy, maybe to obfuscate opinions. She writes of him: “I promised my friends that I would not end up sleeping with the first guy that comes by, but F. was a change of plans.” Further adding that in Italy smoking joints is simply normal, “like eating a plate of pasta.”

    On the other hand Amanda spends a lot of money in the several months she’s in Perugia. In September, she draws out $ 2,452 from her bank account, that’s 1,691 euros. How did she spend it? No one has ever investigated this, and she does not explain it. She says she used the cash for living [expenses], but considering that the rent she had to pay was only 300 euros, and that twice a week she worked as a waitress in the bar of Patrick Lumumba, Le Chic, putting more cash in her pocket, the [living] expenses seem really excessive.

    What does Amanda do with all that money? For sure she does not buy only hashish, which is not so expensive. Was she, then, using cocaine? The [police] annotation makes you think of it. And this could explain both the state of alteration of the girl on the night of the murder as well as a possible motive. Amanda that evening returned home to get some money to pay for the drugs, and she encountered Meredith? The girls had a fight, as Rudy Guede says in his reconstruction of that night, why, did Amanda steal Meredith’s money? Was Amanda on her own, or maybe she made sure she was accompanied by Rudy or other drug dealing friends?

    No one has ever investigated this, or Amanda’s dangerous acquaintances. So dangerous that the same F., in 2011, was arrested. To be precise that started from the analysis of Amanda’s mobile phone, police investigators found that in fact F. and two of his close friends, Luciano and Lorenzo, were part of a major drug ring: all three ended up on trial for selling cocaine.

    On January 14, 2011 they were all sentenced. The court judges established that Luciano was the one that supplied the other two: He was to serve two years and eight months in prison.

    But let’s read the rest of the police annotation because what this reveals is really disturbing: “F. is contacted by phone by the presumable clients placing an “order” with him of the quantity of drugs they want to buy and in turn he contacts various Maghrebi characters ordering. It is also established that F. associates with multiple-convicted offenders of very serious crimes in the matter of drugs, and with persons such as A. Luciano, with whom he maintains frequent contacts aimed at drug trafficking.”

    And precisely in this way Luciano, linked to F., a friend of Amanda, has a terrible past. The cops wrote this about him: “The above-cited Luciano on the 28/7/2006 was arrested by the carabinieri in Foligno because he was responsible for the murder attempt of his brother, who gave him 16 stab wounds inflicted with a kitchen knife.”

    Luciano, therefore, who sells drugs in Perugia and provides supply to F., with whom he is often in touch, is an unsuccessful killer. Only a year before the murder in Perugia, under the influence of drugs, he tried to kill his brother during an argument over money and drug dealing. Luciano, out of his head that evening, grabbed the knife with which he was slicing a melon in the kitchen and stabbed his brother’s body 16 times.

    A scene not so different from what the judges think happened in Meredith’s house, and even from what was described by the same Amanda on the 5 November 2007 when, at the end of a night of contradictions and anguish, confessed giving culpability of the murder to Patrick Lumumba, the owner of the bar Le Chic, who later proved to be unconnected with the facts of the case. Amanda said: “Patrick and Meredith went to Meredith’s room, while I think that I stayed in the kitchen. I heard screams and was scared, I covered my ears.”

    Where were, F. and Luciano the night of the murder? And who was there that night, instead of Patrick? Questions still unanswered. What seems likely, however, is that Amanda was not with Raffaele, who was at his home on his computer. The judiciary may now decide to open a new file on her. Will the USA grant extradition?

    Here is the translation of Dr Mignini’s interview with Giallo translated by Kristeva.

    Luciano [Giuliano] Mignini, the judge leading the investigation, talks “Amanda knows how to lie very well: she seems sincere and credible ...”

    [GM] The magistrate has directed all investigations: it is she [Judge Matteini] who had Amanda, Raffaele, Patrick Lumumba and Rudy Guede arrested.

    [GM] “In the Supreme Court of Cassation new revelations don’t count” Giuliano Mignini, deputy prosecutor of the Attorney General Office of Perugia and public prosecutor of the first trial for the murder of Meredith [Kercher], goes straight to the point.

    Mr. Mignini, pending the Supreme Court, Raffaele Sollecito seems to have distanced himself from Amanda Knox. He claims he is not certain that the American girl has spent the whole night with Sollecito ...”

    [GM] “All this is irrelevant. In Court of Cassation only questions of laws can be raised. They do not take into account the new elements of reconstruction of the facts. Trials are based on the acts of the proceeding. Sustaining now a different reconstruction of what happened is a question of merit that does not in any way interest cassation.”

    Amanda has repeatedly argued that her version of the facts had been affected by heavy pressures from the prosecutor’s office.

    [GM] “Nothing could be more false. The process of investigation and trial proceeding of Kercher’s murder has had from the beginning an unprecedented media pressure, which has confused some ideas in public opinion. The trial should take place with the guarantee of an adversarial process, with equality of prosecution and defense. When one steps out of these parameters one ends up with a trial through the media. In this scenario, the foreign press, especially the American one, not taking into account our legal system, has given its input. They created a discourse that sounds a bit like this:she is one our fellow citizens and therefore she must be innocent. “

    And if today even Amanda was to change her version?

    [GM] “I would be astonished. She had plenty of occasions to tell her truth”

    What was your impression of Amanda?

    [GM] Amanda is very intelligent. She cleverly tried to divert suspects from her, as in the case of the staged burglary, a huge lie. Amanda is shrewd like when she accused Patrick Lumumba. On that occasion she appeared credible, she was crying. She looked as if terrified. I believe she’s a very theatrical girl and in a certain way even anti conformist: while everyone was crying and were worried, she was doing cartwheels.

    What was her relationship with Meredith?

    [GM] “Amanda did not like to be contradicted and had a conflictual relationship with Meredith. There were constant arguments regarding Amanda’s behaviour that Meredith could not tolerate. She believed that Amanda stole her money.”

    And what type was Sollecito?

    [GM] Raffaele is an enigmatic character. He is a shy young man who was subjected to Amanda’s strong personality. He was very attracted to Knox who in the meantime did not disdain the company of other acquaintances.

    About acquaintances, Amanda knew some drug dealers. Could they have had a role in the murder?

    [GM] “I cannot answer this” But then writes down their names.

    [By] Gian Pietro Fiore

    3. Our Comments On The Giallo Report

    As observed above, for Italians most of this is actually not new news. The new news is that Giallo now has all the dealers’ names, from the open records of the police.

    Giallo’s mention of a possible new trial is presumably connected to this drug-dealing, as the trial for Meredith’s murder and Knox’s and Sollecito’s failed appeal have both concluded, and only Cassation’s endorsement of the verdict is awaited.

    Giallo’s references to Guede as a drug dealer and thief are both unproven. He had no criminal record prior to final conviction by Cassation. He was never a police source, and got zero breaks, ever. He was unknown to Dr Mignini until some days after Meredith was attacked and forensics identified him.

    4. UK and US Media Get Key Fact Wrong

    The UK’s Daily Mail has wrongly claimed that Italy’s Giallo magazine had reported as follows: “Italian prosecutor from Amanda Knox trial gave newspaper list of drug-dealer names associated with American student”.

    In their headlines the US’s National Enquirer and Radar Online make the same wrong claim, though they quote enough from Giallo to show how that magazine really re-surfaced the report.

    So for now UK and US media get that key fact wrong.  This surely wont be the end of it though. The story finally has legs of its own, and clearly the media in all three countries have a willingness to pursue it more.

    In the interview also posted on Giallo Dr Mignini doubted that even now Knox will tell the truth - in fact it is hard to see what she can say. We will wait and see.

    5. Ground Report Also Gets It Wrong

    This shrill report from “Grace Moore” about Guede and Dr Mignini in Ground Report is both seriously wrong on the facts and defamatory - she should try saying that sort of thing about any American prosecutor.  “Grace Moore” should find out what the roles of Judge Matteini and Prosecutor Comodi were, and why after a malicious prosecution against him Prosecutor Mignini is riding high on Italian TV - and pouring cold water on satanic claims about any crimes.

    Paul and Rachel Sterne, the father and daughter owners of Ground Report which carries well over 100 similarly inflammatory posts, could in theory be charged by both Italian and American prosecutors, as they are an eager party to bloodmoney (a felony), harrassment of the victim’s family (a felony) and obstruction of justice under Italian law for poisoning opinion out of court (another felony).

    They need to clean up their site and make some amends.   


    Click to enlarge


    Monday, June 30, 2014

    Apart From Cassation’s Unyielding Mandate, More Problems With The Belated Sollecito/Bongiorno U-Turn

    Posted by The TJMK Main Posters


    1. The Appeal’s Grounds For Separation

    That bizarre infatuation of Bongiorno’s with Knox as Jessica Rabbit is clearly long-gone.

    Now the poor boy was home alone and the absent Miss Rabbit had reason and opportunity. Tiziano posted these ten translated points from the new Sollecito appeal to Cassation, which seems to have the highly nervous Knox camp’s tongues tied.

    Among the numerous flaws the proceedings appealed against present, the one linked to the claimed impossibility of differentiating between the two accused stands out.

    On this point the Appeal Court denied any in-depth analysis at all of the individual roles - an investigation urged by the defence - avoiding taking any position about alternative constructive hypotheses.

    10 points are enumerated by the defence in this regard:

    - AK’s memorial referring to events at via della Pergola was in the singular

    - AK reported receiving SMS not to go to work from Lumumba, but went out just the same

    - AK admitted having lied to RS

    - RS did not calumny anyone: the accusation against PL was never confirmed by RS

    - AK in her memorial positioned only herself at the crime scene at the time of the scream

    - only AK’s blood was on the knife blade

    - no mixed traces RS/MK were found and highlighted by luminol in the house

    - Quintavalle claimed to have seen AK the morning of November 2nd, not RS

    - RS did not know RG and had no reason for wanting MK’s death

    - the alleged bad relations and the question of disappearance of money regarded only MK and AK


    2, Popper Explains Why They Will Go Nowhere

    Popper the highly informed Italian commenter on TJMK and PMF has explained on a previous post why this will fall on deaf ears in Cassation.

    if RS said something he has not said before it would make no difference now. No more evidence can be admitted at the trial.

    Fase istruttoria is over as judgement of merit.  Cassazione can only respond on points appealed and they must be points of law otherwise they are not admissible. Defendants do not talk in hearing.

    Once they are convicted, for example, if he had new information on the case and new evidence that proved (in a convincing way) he is not guilty, he could ask for revisione, basically a review of the trial.

    He clearly has nothing to say though ... if he said she went out, judges knew that already. If he said that night he was in Milan and could prove it conclusively, that could trigger a review of a final sentence.

    We are clearly talking in theory, no such thing will happen.


    3. Could The 10 Points Have Worked Previously?

    If Judge Nencini was still in the saddle could the ten points have had merit?

    Our continuing Interrogation Hoax series has been hammering on the fact that on 5-6 November 2007 quite unpressured Knox herself did state that she went out alone without Sollecito on the night Meredith was murdered. 

    But these ten cherrypicked points above and a claim that RS was not even at Meredith’s house that night are self-destroying over-reach. They would not have caused a win or partial win for Sollecito. Not one of them stands up as a get-out-of-jail-free card upon close readings of the reports of Judge Massei and Judge Nencini.

    The lower courts did NOT deny analysis of the individual roles - the two themselves opted to be tried together, while Rudy Guede, fearing two snakes, chose to be tried separately.

    WHEN did the defense urge investigation of their differing roles? What did the Massei trial court miss? It had many months of the sight of Sollecito - sitting there sulky, saying little, not taking the stand. Yes, not assisting Jessica Rabbit with an alibi, but that was not so obvious.

    The wounds on Meredith and the evidence points in Meredith’s room point overwhelmingly to three attackers. They prove the use of two knives from opposite sides. It was Sollecito’s knife that was used for the fatal blow; that remains unshaken - actually, more confirmed by the Carabinieri.

    See Ergon on the implacable knife evidence. Sollecito was the knife fetishist, and the one who was already into the cocaine or crystal meth that Knox was probably on judging by her telling smell the next day, her bizarre behaviors through the week following, and her odd money trail.

    See the implacable evidence against him on the bathmat by SomeAlibi and Yummi.  That footprint had to have been imprinted within a few minutes of the end of the attack on Meredith.

    After the hijacked Hellmann appeal in 2011 Sollecito was deeply craven to Knox and her family and entourage on the US west coast. Craven to the extent that his own family (which despises the Knox-Mellases and blames Knox for his predicament and their lost name and enormous expenses) once hurriedly hopped on an aircraft to Seattle to enforce their separation.

    Sollecito’s hapless book-agent Sharlene Martin and shadow-writer Andrew Gumbel both live on the West Coast and Knox’s radioactive FOA obviously provided most of the malicious fantasy that constitutes his defamatory book.

    Playing chicken with the Italian justice system is notoriously suicidal. The crazy aggression of the Prestons, Fischers and Moores did not help Sollecito at all at the Nencini appeal (though it helped Knox even less - she got handed the longer sentence.)

    The gods-in-their-own-minds in the FOA got Sollecito no US job and no US viza. The email to Judge Nencini and the appeal to ECHR and the promised fight against extradition for Knox are to him merely insults, and attempts to separate Knox off.

    So, back in Italy, he is confused, let-down, disgruntled, and loaded for bear. Knox was the loose canon in 2007, Sollecito is the loose canon now.

    Here is a key exchange between our main posters SeekingUnderstanding and Hopeful from previous threads.

    4. Take On RS Now By SeekingUnderstanding

    [t does seem so very sad and frustrating that Raphaele did not open the window of opportunity, as Judge Nencini tried to nudge him to do, just before Christmas.

    He is less easy to read than Ms. Knox , for a number of reasons - more introverted, less articulate (certainly in English; but he also doesn’t seem expressive in his own language), and because of the psychology itself.

    You may remember I suggested AK finds it unbearable to acknowledge her darker side, to own her projections; unbearable to be thought of as ‘a monster’, to be unlovable, or indeed hated by people. This may be a strong component in her lying.

    I believe Raphaele also finds things unbearable, but whereas Amanda appears to turn this unbearable feeling into lashing out to others, - I think in Raphaele, he finds himself and ‘what has happened to him’ (passive aggression) unbearable. His judgement has not only been poor, but catastrophically poor, - and he must know this. One wonders why the self-destruct.

    He knows his life is ruined, and he knows his appalling judgement was instrumental. He truly doesn’t have confidence in himself, but bluffs anyway. His ‘ex’, by contrast,has too much. If only she could have self-doubt, and feel shame.

    He is not unintelligent, by no means, yet his choices and decisions at times have seemed near idiotically stupid. So there must be something else going on, something deep in his psyche that causes such confusion in his mental and emotional universe.

    He seems unable to organize his emotions. He appears to want or expect or need a woman to ‘sort them out’ (sort him out). His relationship with his mother would probably reveal the source of this. How did she manage her emotions? Or did they rule her? . These are the sort of questions I might be asking. He seems overwhelmed, swallowed up by the juggernaut that AK set in motion.

    Was his mother easily overwhelmed by life’s problems? Something has gone wrong (drastically) with a healthy model for his ‘anima’.

    Where Amanda is the arch manipulator, he is highly manipulable. He seems to copy. Like her, his self-identity is weak, but for different reasons. Drug use, I would suggest, has been both crucial and disastrous for his mind. From this point of view, prison will be a constructive environment for him, (as AK too). Perhaps without the distorting and illusory aspects of drugs he might begin, over many years, to experience true spiritual (and therefore moral) issues.

    I always think drugs give a delusion of spiritual experience (‘the highs’),  - wanting them can be (for an introvert) indicative of longing for something more spiritual, but using them will actually prevent such an experience, emphatically.

    So then there is bitterness and emptiness, as well as despair and, still, confusion. Thus the addiction which starts as a cycle in the mind.

    I knew a psychologist who worked with highly motivated and successful people in the Arts - people who would have burn out, creativity, and performance issues. He was extremely clever. But he was adamant that there had to be a hierarchy for dealing with problems.

    That is to say, if someone was using drugs and/or alcohol to the point of misuse (extremely common in the performing arts), - this problem had to be mastered and dealt with FIRST, before anything else could even be addressed. This may seem irrelevant (as Sollecito hasn’t shown he is creative), - but I would
    say the signs are that his past (and current?) drug use needs to be sorted before anything else can possibly be.

    Such a destructive shame that this has all dragged on for 7years.

    I don’t think he has any idea as to how to give a ‘press conference’ - even supposing , by a miracle, he was going to tell the unadulterated truth. He is way out of his depth. I doubt he has sufficient communication skills in his own language, let alone In English for the American media.


    5. And The Take Of Hopeful On RS Now

    As he is back in the spotlight for the July 1 press conference, your observations about him are timely. He does seem more introverted than Knox, and less articulate. Correct me if I misinterpret what you said about him, that rather than lash out at others aggressively like Knox does to disperse and blame others for her awful feelings about her dark side, Sollecito does the opposite and feels the weight of shame but turns the unbearable feelings inward. He is poster child for passive-aggressive.

    I also believe he does have a sense of deep loyalty and faithfulness to his family, since his father has never abandoned him nor did his mother. He has misplaced loyalties at times, and combines a stubborn streak with false sense of need to persevere after he has made wrong steps.

    This comment is mainly a review of what you conclude about Raf, but bears repeating. He is ashamed of his “catastrophically bad judgment.” I agree, his pride is wounded, his vanity more than his love for Knox.

    I believe Raffaele sincerely regrets what he realizes he has done to his own family, but still can’t quite confess it. Maybe part of him is sorry but part of him is secretly glad he is controlling his father’s destiny, in punitive action for divorcing his mother. He also sent his sister’s career down the cliff. His sister is really to blame for that so with true passive-aggressive deceptiveness he can hide his responsibility for it while causing it.

    His wanky emotions have made a trainwreck of his intelligence and caused him to do “idiotically stupid” things and self-destruct.

    His drug use to relieve inner confusion caused by lack of self-identity is a coping method that does more harm than good. His patience is more of a drug stupor that makes him slow to act, than real gritted teeth patience, which may be why we’ve waited this long (6 years) for him to reveal the truth about Knox.

    He stayed in a cloud of marijuana until she came along. She liked the drugs, too. He allowed her to set the course of his life because he needed or wanted a woman to sort out his emotions. Maybe he was competing with dad with a new hot blondie, too. He didn’t fathom that Knox would become so extreme and so terrifying.

    He underestimated Knox, and she saw she could manipulate and destroy him with one hand tied behind her back. She reveled in the besotted weakling, and she felt superiority over Guede too, and soon despised them both. She wouldn’t fall into some darkened room or quiet void of depression like Raffaele’s mom had done giving up on life. The insulated quiet Italian boy raised scrupulously did not see that with Knox he would be “swallowed up in the juggernaut AK set in motion”. He wanted her power and excited vision, but he couldn’t understand her mental illness that went with it. Love is blind.

    As long as he could blame her and not himself maybe he was OK with it, especially with drugs to dull the pain, until he felt the full impact of her punishment and years later her treachery. Finally he grew a brain and saw it was Knox who betrayed him, not vice versa. Maybe the press conference is to set that straight.

    His drug use got him through much of his first year of prison when he lost all sense of time and space. He was a basketcase. He probably used meds his last 3 years behind bars as well. Perhaps Dr. Sollecito saw that his son got legal prescriptions for him, maybe even purchasing prison favors that way, who knows?

    Maybe Knox scoffed at Raf’s crutch, and she continued to compete with him behind bars. She scoffed at her mom for taking antidepressants. Knox had no room to talk as she herself was reportedly a massive drug user at UW and in Italy found a job where liquor flowed.

    Has Raf continued the drug use? Does Greta his new girlfriend use drugs? Or has he sworn them off motivated by anger and determination to clear his head for his legal fight?

    The concept of “anima” is unknown to me, although the term is familiar. I will research it online, thank you. Your insights are always valuable, thank you for sharing them. Thanks for educating us in the short comment format which can’t do justice to your full knowledge of the subject, but does shed a lot of light and points the way.


    Raffaele’s mother and her sad demise seem to be at the root of her son’s depression. Raf has lack of confidence and the need to bluff where he feels no real power. He and Knox are still learning tricks from each other.

    I think Knox may have been a father-figure to him in a twisted way, because Amanda is energetic and adventurous and for a short while in Perugia seemed to have it all together and be a hard worker like his dad. Raf met Knox at the peak of her exhileration with her new life in Italy. Like a drug high, it might not have lasted. He was completely deceived.

    He may have felt he could never compete with his older sister who might have seemed to him like Amanda and his dad: energetic, capable, feet on ground. This is probably what Raf needs in his life.

    Raf commented on Knox living life as if in a dream, there was no reality in her mind, she lived only for pleasure. Maybe he did not like this side of her. This was his wakeup call and he spoke about it openly because it was something he didn’t like, having thought at first glance she was a strong American. He didn’t know whether to attribute her odd mental impracticality to her nationality, her genetics, her femaleness, or her unknown religious upbringing. He had no clue, and maybe it even made him feel stronger and more grounded by comparison since he had formerly thought of himself as a tetherless dreamer but he didn’t want another spaced out confused dreamer like himself for a partner and was having second thoughts. He preferred her rough kick-butt side. She was the brother he never had, a wild West type, a cowboy to climb trees with and roam the range, the key to a new country after his launch to Munich didn’t work out.

    In early childhood Raf maybe got labeled or saw himself as “slow” or “dumb” and began to live a self-fulfilling prophecy. He might have felt misunderstood knowing that he did have a lot of intelligence, but that he did not have the same personality as his dad or sis, and not wanting to be equated with his pushed aside mom. He must have felt very alone.

    He also may be carrying a lot of shame about his MPD Psycho habit and his secret fantasy life of violence.

    Raffaele may have been turned off yet partly tantalized by his father’s profession. A doctor sees a lot of blood and gruesome things with the body.

    Raffaele may hero worship a father who can face such grotesque things without wincing, and a sister who had power with the police and saw crime victims.

    You mention the Arts and a psychologist who treated performers with burnout and creative types who needed help or a life coach. Maybe Raffaele does see himself as more that artsy type of person, someone wanting to create computer games, sci-fi fantasy, or be an “Experience Teller”. He did write a book, so maybe he does fall into the category of artistic temperament, which often needs a guide or an infusion of stiffened backbone to face the realities of life in a business sense.

    Knox seems to be struggling with math, yet her mom is a math teacher and her dad an accountant.


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