Understanding Why Guede’s Appeal For A New Trial Was Declined By The Florence Court
Posted by Machiavelli
A trial review is something that resembles what in the US would be called an “appeal”, in fact a kind of appeal that a person convicted might request, in the event that new evidence emerges that may change the verdict. The existence of new evidence is required in order to simply request a revew trial. The burden for presenting new evidence which is significant is fully on the convicted person (requesting party).
So this is what Guede was attempting to request. The “new evidence” that he was presenting as I understand was basically the points made by the Fifth Chambers of the Supreme Court, that is basically: the finding that presence at the murder is not sufficient evidence to convict beyond reasonable doubt; despite it being proven the suspects were there there is still no evidence beyond reasonable doubt of their active role in the act of killing.
If that point was applied to Guede too, he could argue that there is still reasonable doubt on his participation in the murder and guilt, despite the evidence of his being on the scene of crime (as the Fifth Chambers said about Knox).
In a situation of the normal functioning of the law - where the previous judges’ decisions are actually legal - there would be no room for a review of Guede’s conviction, because in order to obtain a trial review, a convicted person has to show that given the new evidence, the overall assessment of the evidence has a significant probability to change, meaning that a court assessing all the evidence would have a significant probability to come to a different conclusion.
Now, if evidence on Rudy Guede is assessed legally by a court, there would be no significant probability that any court would come out with a different verdict, because there is in fact sufficient evidence that he took part in a murder and that he is guilty in complicity along with other culprits as the courts have already found.
Before the Florence ruling my mind was open because the situation was not a normal legal situation: we had the Fifth Chambers verdict that was making those absurd points of law potentially changing the legal landscape, they created a precedent on which Guede could have requested a different assessment of his evidence, aligned with the standards set by the Fifth Chambers.
Those standards are not normal, not legal. They are delusional. But they are in the record, and so the decision on whether to allow a re-trial of Guede would depend on (1) whether the court decides based on the normal legal standards, or (2) whether they decide based on the verdict & rationale on reasonable doubt by the Fifth Chambers.
Since there is a conflict of res iudicata any possible rationale on Guede’s request was theoretically possible.
My guess is that the Florence judges could see that based on normal legal rules it was obvious that there is no actual room for a trial review of Guede’s verdict. So they declared his request inadmissible.
The question of how to fit the decision with the Fifth Chambers Bruno/Marasca verdict is an open question, upon which the court may decide to invent something so to make it look consistent in the pending report.
It is impossible to make it *actually* consistent with the Fifth Chambers verdict, but the Florence court can’t change the Fifth Chambers verdict and the verdict is not about Guede, therefore they might just ignore it, or mention it in a way that is vague, or write arguments that are either building pretexts about it or dismissive of its implications. What they write doesn’t really matter, actually because their decision is not about Knox & Sollecito.
The Florentine court can neither find AK & RS guilty nor “acquit” them, that is they cannot “take them away from the murder room” where the Fifth Chambers definitely placed them. This is true no matter what the Florence courts decides to write about AK & RS: it doesn’t matter what they write about them, since they only have power to assess the final verdict about Rudy Guede for retrial purposes and nothing else.
Whatever excuse they write about any other topic - such as the participation of Knox & Sollecito - is legally irrelevant, because they are not invested with the task of finding anything else. Whatever they write in their motivations might be useful for the media, but we shall bear in mind the Florence court is making no decision about Knox & Sollecito and cannot make any finding that could ever change the previous definitive judicial truths.
That included the definitive finding that Guede acted in complicity with others, that he was not the person who was holding the murder weapon, and that AK and probably RS were right there.