Sunday, March 15, 2009

Trial: Prosecution Witnesses Present Many More Reports On Odd Behavior Of Knox

Posted by Peter Quennell


1) Nick Pisa reported this in Sky News:

Tests found that nobody had worked on Raffaele Sollecito’s computer over an eight-hour period spanning the night when Ms Kercher was stabbed to death in her bedroom, prosecution witness Marco Trotta told an Italian court.

Sollecito has maintained he was at his own apartment the night of the murder, working on his computer. Trotta showed the court videos and said there was “no human interaction” between 9:10 pm on November 1 and 5:32am the following day…

Ms Kercher is believed to have died between 9pm and 11pm on November 1, according to court documents.

2) Other reports from the trial state that the playing of the 90-minute movie “Amelie” from 6:37 pm was the last detectable major action.  The 9:10 pm action appears to have been simply the closing of a program that was running.

3) Sollecito’s lawyer Giulia Bongiorno claimed in the trial that while “this computer may or may not be proof or evidence of an alibi” it had proved impossible for the communication police ‘to read data on four of the five machines seized [two belonging to Sollecito, one to Knox, one to Meredith and one to Guede] three of which have suffered electric shocks” and that the reconstruction of the evening’s computer actions “provided only partial and fragmentary data.”

4) The lawyer Francesco Maresca, who represents the Kercher family as a civil party, observed that for him “one of the alibis collapses” because the findings indicate that in the period of the murder there was no human interaction with the computer.

5) Nick Squires reported this in the Daily Telegraph:

The American’s former teacher told the court that four days after the murder she told her class to practise their Italian by writing a letter home.

Miss Knox penned a letter to her mother in Seattle in which she said she was “confused and worried” and that as a way of distracting herself she wanted to going shopping.

The teacher, Antonella Negri, described Miss Knox as “diligent” and “attentive”. She said that at the beginning of the lesson she had made reference to Miss Kercher’s murder. “I saw in Amanda a reaction of discomfort,” Mrs Negri told the court. “She leant forward onto the desk and lay her head in her arms.”

6) John Hooper reported this in the UK Guardian:

Earlier today, another police interpreter described noticing a red mark on Knox’s neck. Aida Colantone said Knox was in the police station at Perugia.

“Since her throat was bare – she had a blue tracksuit with the zip in front – I was struck in my mind by the extraordinary pallor of this girl from which a red mark leaped out,” she said.

7) Nick Pisa reported this in the Daily Mirror:

The pretty American - known as Foxy Knoxy - is accused with her ex-lover Raffaele Sollecito, 24, of murdering British student Meredith, 21. She could now face a second slander charge after claiming in court she had been hit by police during questioning.

8) And Richard Owen reported this in the London Times:

Chris Mellas, Ms Knox’s stepfather, told journalists at the court that the police investigation was flawed.

Mr Mellas, 35, an IT consultant, said that he had visited Ms Knox three times in prison.

“She is doing OK,” he said. “These things stress her out, and it’s hard for her to see the overall picture. I sit down and tell her that is not going so bad, that the prosecution haven’t really brought anything up in court yet.”

Asked if he shared the defence view that the police inquiry had been mishandled and evidence contaminated, he said: “I think particular portions of it have not been done appropriately, and the court is seeing that as well. We will see how it was conducted.”

He said that Ms Knox was “completely innocent”. There had “not been a day” when he “even considered” doubting her. There is no evidence against Amanda”.... He had spoken to Ms Knox on the eve of the hearing. “I told her she’s innocent and she needs to speak up for herself.”

Asked for his opinion of the Italian justice system he said: “It is different from ours, but I’m sure it will end up OK. As soon as this is done she will want to rejoin her family and friends. But do I think she will come back to Perugia? Most certainly.”

Posted on 03/15/09 at 09:30 AM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
Right-column links: The officially involvedThe defensesEvidence & witnessesOther physicalTrials 2008 & 2009News media & movies
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Saturday, March 14, 2009

Confirmed: Neither Knox’s Father Nor Stepfather Were So Solicitous In Seattle

Posted by Peter Quennell


Click above for more in-depth reporting by Barbie Nadeau for the new mega news-site the Daily Beast.

The Beast is clearly the American media outfit most intent now on steam-rolling the floundering Seattle PR effort and throwing some serious resources into reporting the real story.

Particularly noteworthy in this repoort in Amanda Knox’s wider psychological context are these passages.

1) About an absentee biological father who several times defaulted on Amanda’s child support payments

Knox is the product of a broken home. Her parents Edda and Curt divorced when she was two years old. On more than one occasion Edda had to go to court to collect child support from Curt.

2) And on a snarling and abusive stepfather who moved in to the household when Knox was aged ten

When Amanda was around 10, her mother met and later married Chris Mellas, an IT specialist ten years her junior….  Mellas, who is taking his turn in the family rotation for the next few weeks, is also a father figure. People close to the family say his relationship with Amanda, who is only 14 years younger, was complicated and tenuous at times.

She complained about him to several friends, and expressed worries about her mother’s relationship. She wrote on Mellas’ MySpace page in August 2007, just two months before the murder, “Alright, does that mean we’re getting along then?”

In turn, Mellas’ MySpace page bragged about getting drunk with his stepdaughter. That same page, now offline but mirrored on several Internet sites, is rife with photos of drunk people vomiting and pictures of Mellas and his buddies holding big fish they’ve caught.

Describing himself as happily married, he wrote, “I have two kids by marriage, Amanda and Deanna. They are both shitheads and I love them anyways. They, as we all do, have their fare [sic] share of quirks…but we would all be white bread boring as hell if we didn’t.”

Mellas is hot-tempered and frequently lashes out at the press, accusing anyone who doubts Amanda’s innocence as “insane” and “stupid.” He also posts nasty comments on blogs about the case and has written harsh emails to many reporters.

On Friday, he physically shooed away Nick Pisa, an Anglo-Italian reporter who writes for a variety of British publications. “Don’t even bother,” he snarled in the open courtroom. “I am not talking to you. You don’t understand the truth.”

With friends like these in her family, does she need any enemies? At least we here at TJMK always try to be fair to her.

Posted on 03/14/09 at 03:00 AM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
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Friday, March 13, 2009

Trial: Sky News Video Report On Friday’s Court Session

Posted by Peter Quennell

Posted on 03/13/09 at 10:00 PM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
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Trial: More Testimony On Knox Acting Weird After Meredith Was Murdered (2)

Posted by Peter Quennell




Testimony of Chief Inspector Oreste Volturno

This post spills over from the post immediately below.

Translation here is by Catnip. As mentioned in today’s court report, Chief Inspector Oreste Volturno took part in the search of Raffaele’s place; and investigated when and where the bleach found there was purchased.

He investigated the 20 euro withdrawal reported on Meredith’s account, and tried to track down Raffaele’s school and police records. He also participated in the seizure of material from the Telenorba TV station after their broadcast had gone to air.

Transcript of testimony given in the hearing of 13 March 2009, pp 177-211

Depositions of the witness Oreste Volturno

The witness, admonished pursuant to Article 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, reads the oath.

Particulars: Chief Inspector Oreste Volturno, in service with the Flying Squad, Perugia Police; born at Montegabbione (TR), 12 June 1956.

President: Please.
Public Prosecutor, Dr Mignini
QUESTION: You have carried out investigations on the death of Meredith Kercher?
ANSWER: Yes.

Q: Do you remember what type of investigative tasks you carried out? First list them, then describe them.
A: In practice the first investigative task that I carried out was as regards two containers of Ace bleach that had been seized at Raffaele Sollecito’s house on 16 November 2007. Immediately after the seizure I went around the shops in the environs of Raffaele Sollecito’s place of residence trying to understand from where they could have been purchased from, and for this purpose I was showing people the photograph of Raffaele Sollecito, the photograph of Amanda Knox. After a couple of days we tracked down the shop which was a Conad-Margherita shop situated right at the start of Corso Garibaldi, where both the owner and the shop assistants were to identify, from the photographs that we placed before them, [178] Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox. Raffaele Sollecito was a usual customer of this shop, while the girl had been seen two or three times in his company.

Q: Together with Sollecito?
A: Yes, yes, in his company. In this shop we asked also if by chance they had noticed in the days immediately prior to the murder or straight after if they remembered whether these persons had acquired this product, although they didn’t remember. I have to preface this with the shop is subdivided into two levels, one is higher up where the entrance is and the other is lower down. The one higher up is where all the products are that people take and then go straight to the cashier, while the one below is the delicatessen, cheeses, etc etc where there were two girls working, in addition to the owner, who I think I remember was called Quintavalle. One in particular, an Ecuadorian girl, at the time I recall that it was interesting, she said to us that she had a friend who was doing the cleaning at Raffaele Sollecito’s house and she indicated the cellular device with which we then contacted her, although as for the bleach nothing came out of it, either a person or a mention of something. We were checking that…

Q: What was this woman called?
A: (Kiriboga) … the rest I don’t remember. It was actually through the mobile phone number that she furnished that led us to the person who was then doing the cleaning at that time, up until 5 November, the last day that she did the cleaning, and another Ecuadorian girl who was called Natalia. This one was interviewed on the record but she wasn’t able to tell us anything about this bleach. Then subsequent to this episode (Kiriboga) was also heard, she furnished us a version where she said actually that this bleach had been seen by her in Sollecito’s house and that in any case a container [179] had been said, had been bought by Raffaele Sollecito at her request. I asked her why she hadn’t mentioned it at the time that I asked her, the first day, in the days immediately after the search, that is between 16 and 19 November, and she said to me that the same questions had been asked at the firm of Counsellor Maori and that at the time she didn’t recall this fact, but after having been at Counsellor Maori’s she remembers having bought this bleach. However the investigations proceeded onwards because I asked the owner of the shop if by means of the product barcode it was possible to go back to the period in which it was handed over or sold or at the least ordered and which company was the supplier of this bleach. He told me that the company was a Ponte San Giovanni company I believe, the PAC, and I contacted the person responsible in the detergents department who was a Mr Cicognola, I think, who told me that being a product without an expiry he was not obliged by law to memorise it, that is computerise it, and so he was not able to uncover precisely the shop at which it had been sold, at the time. He furnished us information however, namely the boxes were of 18 containers each and had been consigned to Quintavalle’s shop which was a Conad-Margherita, the same label that was on the container seized at Sollecito’s house dated 1 October, 11 November and 5 November the last consignment. Another box of the same product had been consigned to another Conad-Margherita shop which is located about 50 metres further up from Raffaele Sollecito’s place of residence, whose owner now I don’t remember. Until 11 October the recommended PAC price for this product was 0.85 euro, while from 11 October onwards the recommended price was 1.09 because he says that before there was a more favourable market and [180] so they had a lower price, although no one was able to rule out that in any case the product being at the old price might have been among the others and then purchased for 0.85, the price that then turned out to have been applied to the container seized from Sollecito’s house. As regards this investigation about the bleach, nothing else was done.

Q: You were in Sollecito’s house?
A: Yes, I had been on two occasions. The first occasion was on the 8th of November during a search when different types of apparel were seized, I seem to recall. On a second occasion on the 16 November…

Q: Let’s go in order; the 8th, did you all have footwear and gloves?
A: Yes, yes, we always have footwear and gloves because we’ve got them in the car, they’re from the office.

Q: New?
A: Yes, they’re taken from the boxes as needed from time to time.

Q: So you’d entered on the 8th?
A: We had entered the first time on the 8th and I remember that numerous items of apparel were seized, underwear, jumper…

Q: Was there a particular smell there on the 8th?
A: Yes, there was a smell of bleach permeating the inside of the apartment because it was sealed and we broke the seals because it had been sequestered prior.

Q: These items of clothing, where had you put them?
A: The items of clothing were pointed out to our colleagues from the Scientific Police who were taking them and putting them into paper envelopes, one by one and then they were sealed and catalogued inside a big box.

Q: So they actually also had overalls?
[181] A: Our colleagues from the Scientifica yes, we only had the footwear and gloves.

Q: And then, the second time?
A: The second time was the 16th of November although I had not gone inside the apartment because the footwear had run out and I stayed outside on the landing cataloguing the items of evidence that were being handed over to me in envelopes and I was putting them into a big box.

Q: You had gloves on, though?
A: Yes, yes, I had gloves on.

Q: Other investigative tasks?
A: One other investigative task had been carried by me personally on Ms Kercher’s credit cards, because from an account statement extract that had been faxed to us by her parents there was a 20 euro withdrawal at the IMI-San Paolo in Perugia. I contacted them, I believe around the first part of the month of December 2008, I think the 8th, the 9th or the 10th, I don’t recall now precisely, I contacted the manager of the bank, of the IMI-San Paolo in the person of Dr Farsi and I asked him if it were possible to trace back the person who had made this withdrawal or at the least verify that this withdrawal had been made. I also asked him if there were security cameras and he said to me: “Yes, there are, although the security camera only covers the bank entrance and not the ATM, but in any case the video cassettes are reset each week”, time had already passed because the account extract had been faxed to us towards the end of the month of November by the Kercher family, I did the first investigations on it on the 10th of December, or on the 8th of December, so from the 2nd of November more than a month had gone by and the recordings had already been reset multiple times. Mr Farsi examined the funds journals of all four ATMs, of the head office and the branches that there are in Perugia and responded to me by [182] letter that according to the journals there was no withdrawal of that kind neither on the 2nd of November nor in the days preceding…

Q: Do you recognise it?
A: Yes, it’s this one.

Q: I don’t know if it is in the evidence file, otherwise I ask for its production.

President: What is it?
A: It’s the reply of the San Paolo bank corporation as regards the investigations on the withdrawal of the 20 euro.

Defence – Ghirga: What date is this letter?
Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: 4 January 2008
A: Actually he in his letter was telling me that that 20 euro withdrawal, that sum hadn’t been done neither on the 2nd of November nor in the days immediately preceding and that practically at this point the investigations were at a standstill because there being no withdrawal there was no…

Q: I ask its production then.
Defence – Bongiorno: Mr President, it’s a finding on what we have done, as everyone will recall, a question the other time to a witness and the reply was given that there were no further investigative activities. Up until today, that letter was not in the file, we want to peruse it and give our opinion tomorrow maybe.
President: Certainly. We can proceed in the meantime.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Other investigative activities that you all had carried out and that you yourself had participated in?
A: Other investigative activities that had been carried out by me personally were activities concerning an authorization or power of attorney, a authorization of his as regards Giovinazzo, at the [183] schools attended by Sollecito.

Q: What had you found out in particular? Was it an activity integral with the investigation?
A: Yes, actually from examining the class rolls, the boy’s personal file and everything what we were looking for was not found, that is, a fact that had happened at school. Amongst other things it wasn’t possible to verify it because the class rolls from 2003, which is the last year that Raffaele Sollecito attended secondary school, every five years they’re sent for pulping and so we had arrived when they had already been pulped, for this reason this investigative task was not able to be carried out.

Q: What were you supposed to have been doing?
A: Whether there had been the wounding of a girl on the part of Raffaele Sollecito during the course of school lessons. I preface this with the headmaster of the middle school, at the time the headmaster of the middle school attended by Raffaele Sollecito, that he had also been interviewed for summary information [SI] by me personally, he provided a certain resistance, as if he wanted to hide something. This I believe I also had him…

Defence – Bongiorno: Mr President, these are…
President: Maybe if you can refer to the behaviour he had displayed.
Defence – Bongiorno: Mr President, also as to the modality, for heaven’s sake, I don’t believe it’s a prohibition that they are referring to things heard in interview, but if they are however witnesses heard in interview, then they have to be heard or not or he gives us a summary and then we hear them or else he really avoids commenting every time.
A: Counsel, I have said in summary what I have heard and [184] in my view it was omertoso {=mafia code of silence}.

Defence – Bongiorno: No, look that this cannot be put into the transcript!
President: Please! The parties will direct…
A: He was a little bit reticent.

President: Let’s avoid this, “in my opinion” introduces an evaluation and therefore he cannot express it, only the behaviour that he dsiplayed, maybe if he has answered all questions or else some question he hasn’t.
A: He has answered all questions, but in a very vague manner.

President: Please.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: What other things had you found out specifically?
A: We had found at the Carabinieri station in Giovinazzo, in Sollecito’s file, there was a precedent signalled by the Carabinieri station at Castellaneta, in Taranto province, relating to the year 2003 I believe, when he had been stopped together with another two boys because they were in the possession of the quantity of two and half grams net of narcotic substance, in the form of hashish.

Q: Then other things?
A: Then there were investigative tasks carried out in relation to the death of his mother. Investigations were made at the pathologist’s, at 118 [=the medical emergency number].

President: Excuse me, pertinent matters.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Well, this one about the substance…
[185] President: Yes, the substance yes, but he was introducing other things.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Other investigations that you have carried out?
A: I did phone and ambient intercepts.

Q: What investigative leads emerged from the ambient and telephonic intercepts?
A: Investigative leads actually hardly any although all the activity that had been done had demonstrated that, on the part of the family, there was an intention to quicksand, to derail…

Intervention: It’s not possible!
President: Excuse me, excuse me everyone. If you’re able to say the facts, the specific circumstances.
A: There are several things…

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Those are facts though, it’s not an opinion, then if it’s true or not…
President: By what thing was this behaviour manifested that you are now summarising, but the summary constitutes an evaluation.
A: Actually they wanted to eliminate the personnel who were carrying out the investigations, whether professionally or physically.

President: What emerged under that aspect?
A: Menaces, political contacts, those Honourables currently in Government, like the Honourable Nania, the Honourable Formisana, the Honourable Mastella who were going to have to intervene to find a way to put an end to this thing and this before Cassation’s decision, then evidently, after Cassation’s decision, these [186] persons detached themselves, I don’t know, however the names were…

President: Cassation’s decision relating to the Re-examination Hearing?
A: Yes, to the Re-examination Hearing. These persons were named and they’re in the phone intercepts, with the records, the transcripts and everything.

President: Please.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: You carried out other investigative tasks?
A: No.

Q: Do you recall a dossier that was acquired, was it acquired relative to everything an investigative task that had been effected?
A: Yes, the dossier had not been acquired, it had been seized and is still under seizure.

President: If you can be more precise about this thing that we know nothing about… what does it concern?
A: It concerns a dossier where actually the Sollecito family, with this dossier, wanted to carry out a media attack on the investigations under way, on the Public Prosecutors who were following up on the case and everything else and it was given to the Telenorba television station and also to the Panorama newspaper, and even on this matter there are the phone intercepts that we have been talking about. Then it had been seized because a warrant writ had been made and our personnel went to the Telenorba headquarters and seized this dossier with the video-cassettes.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: And on the occasion of the publication of the images?
A: Yes, the images had been… On the occasion of the publication of the images in a transmission, which now I don’t remember the name of, which had been transmitted by [187] Telenorba.

Q: Images that portrayed?
A: Portraying the body of Ms Kercher completely naked in the middle of the room and other things.

Q: No other questions.

President: The Civil Parties? No other question. The defence, please.
Defence – Maori: Counsellor Maori, Sollecito defence. Inspector Volturno, let’s start in order: investigation that you did in relation to the infamous bleach. You made service notes?
A: Yes.

Q: Can you tell us which ones they are?
A: There’s one for the 19th…

Q: Pick it up if you have it. And one from the 28th.
A: Yes.

President: You are authorised to consult your documents.
Defence – Maori: Let’s start from the 19th; so you make this service note where you refer to the activity that you carried out a couple of days before?
A: From the 16th to the 19th, from the day the two containers had been seized to the 19th on which I make the note.

Q: Exactly. You took various people’s witness statements.
A: No, I had questioned them informally at the shop, not as for a statement.

Q: Who did you question?
A: Quintavalle, (Kiriboga) because she’s his shop assistant and the other girl whose name I don’t recall now.

Q: This Natalia.
[188] A: No, Natalia was not at the shop as a shop assistant, Natalia was the friend of (Kiriboga) who was doing the cleaning in Sollecito’s house, but she wasn’t working in the shop.

Q: You have said earlier that you had photographs of Amanda and Raffaele.
A: Exactly.

Q: And you had shown them to the persons who were to be found inside the food store?
A: Yes.

Q: So therefore both the owner and the shop assistants.
A: Yes.

Q: And you had asked if these persons had presented themselves or not inside the shop in the preceding days.
A: No, I had asked if they were customers of the shop, because I did that with all the shops in Corso Garibaldi, not only with Quintavalle, showing them the photos I was asking them if they were customers.

Q: You though say different things in your notations, not different, in the sense that you specify that you had questioned the owner, Mr Quintavalle, and he mentioned that Sollecito was one of his usual customers and that Ms Knox had come into the shop only on a couple of occasions together with the boyfriend.
A: Yes.

Q: You confirm this?
A: Certainly, it’s written in the notation.

Q: Shortly we will ask for the acquisition, the production of the two notations. Therefore in these words Mr Quintavalle made it known that Sollecito and Amanda Knox … so, Amanda Knox had entered into the residence always in the company of Sollecito?
A: Yes, into the shop, on those two occasions on which she had entered she had entered always in the company of Sollecito.

Q: How come these were not annotated, an SI statement was not done?
[189] A: Because the notation is enough for me.

Q: They’re two different things.
A: Yes, but as regards the investigative tasks I informally question them and put in annotations, that’s also investigating.

Q: On that occasion, that is I’m still talking of the 19th, had (Kiriboga) been asked if she had been Sollecito’s maid?
A: No, although given that I had asked… wait, I had asked the owner and both the two assistants if they had ever seen these persons in the shop and they said to me: “yes, they’re usual customers, only that he comes more often and she’s come on a couple of occasions”. Then I asked if they had bought bleach in the days prior to the murder and nobody said to me: “no, I can’t say” and (Kiriboga) said to me: “I’m less able to say than Quintavalle because I’m located in the small goods section which is downstairs, while the bleach is on the side of the shop above under Mr Quintavalle’s supervision”.

Q: But you hadn’t asked (Kiriboga) whether she had been Sollecito’s maid?
A: No, I hadn’t asked if she had been a maid.

Q: You then had spoken of the fact that (Kiriboga) subsequently, when interviewed, had made it known that she had in her turn been interviewed by me.
A: Yes.


Q: This statement, that I had then immediately deposited and afterward it was reviewed by my learned friend, have you read it?
A: (Kiriboga)’s statement?

Q: My statement which I deposited.
A: No, I haven’t read it, I have mine.

Q: You haven’t read it?
A: No, I’ve read mine, the one that I’ve taken from [190] (Kiriboga), I haven’t read yours.

Q: (Kiriboga) during the course of the statement says that: “the same questions that were being put by you…” by you the police officers, were also being put by me.
A: Yes, she says, in fact it’s written in the statement.

Q: Therefore you again confirm not having read the statement that I’ve deposited?
A: No, I haven’t read your statement. She says to me: “Counsellor Maori asked me the same questions” and I’ve put it into the statement.

Q: Very good, there’s congruency between the questions on my part first and on your part subsequently. Let’s go the second; on what relates to the bleach, you on the 16th November effected a domestic search.
A: Yes, I was present at the search but I had not entered into the apartment.

Q: Yes…
A: And on the 16th November the two containers of bleach were seized.

President: In the house used by Raffaele Sollecito?
A: Yes.

Defence – Maori: I see in the seizure record signed by you that as regards the Ace brand bleach “on the cap there was a small sticker Conad brand bearing the numbers 085”.
A: Yes.

Q: Therefore signifying what?
A: 85 cents.

Q: Therefore referring to the price.
A: To the price.

Q: And how was this sticker?
A: Conad – Margherita.

Q: But was it faded, was it old, was it new?
[191] A: This I don’t remember, there was a sticker, the price was visible and…

Q: Who redacted the record actually?
A: Perhaps…

Q: Pick it up so that at least we can see…
A: Yes.

Q: Go to page 3, it’s the first item of evidence, exhibit RS3.
A: Yes.

Q: Here it says: “digits – after the numbers 085, which you have clarified as being the purchase price – digits barely visible with a magnifying lens.”.
A: Yes.

Q: Therefore signifying what?
A: That it was faded but the amount could be read.

Q: Therefore it was an old sticker?

Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: No!
Defence – Maori: Pardon me, I am asking the questions because you Madam Prosecutor want to suggest…
President: Counsellor, please!
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: You’re right because the no came out too loudly.
President: Here though we can’t hear even the witness, but everyone is asked to not do so.
A: 085 the sticker was barely legible.

Q: Therefore was does it mean.
A: That it was a bottle…

Q: You remember now this sticker that we’ve identified?
A: Yes, yes, definitely.

[192] Q: Therefore was it an old sticker or a new one?
A: Old.

Q: Therefore surely prior to the 11 October as you have indicated?
A: Definitely, but prior as a price.

Q: As a purchase as we will see. In relation to the credit card the police had received the letter of 4 January 2008, in this letter the owner, manager Paolo Farsi, tells you that it is not possible to effect a check, a check relative to the fact that there had been withdrawals with that card on 2 November at the ATM in Perugia or environs, and this thing needed to be asked of the issuing bank directly.
A: Yes, not exactly.

Q: I’m reading it here.
A: Mr Farsi says that on the 2nd November and in the days immediately following there was no withdrawal of that amount made at that bank. If we want to know something more precise it was necessary to go to the English bank issuing the credit card, which was not done because from the moment that he tells me that no withdrawal of that amount was made neither on the 2nd day nor in the preceding days I had not considered it advisable to carry out this investigation.

Q: I’ll read out what has been written in this letter: “our central accounting, suitably appraised, informs us that…”
A: I have it.

President: Yes, also to facilitate the witness’s listening. Continue Counsel.
Defence – Maori: “Our central accounting, suitably appraised, informs us that the only way to find out the information for that withdrawal [193] (branch involved, date and time) is to ask for this information from the English bank issuing the card itself, seeing that each issuing bank is certainly able to retrieve all the activity performed on each of its issued cards”. Then to my question, which you have already partially replied to, seeing that the 2nd of November, it was the 2nd of November from at least from the indications that had been given to you, that an ATM withdrawal had been made from the San Paolo bank, and seeing that the San Paolo bank had said to you: “it is necessary to ask the issuing bank to be certain who had made this withdrawal” why hadn’t you felt it within your scope to ask the English bank who had made this withdrawal at what time, on what date and at which branch?
A: Because I hadn’t thought it useful, because the period before this which you have read out tells me that on the 2nd of November nor on the days immediately preceding there was no 20 euro withdrawal either at the IMI-San Paolo bank in Perugia or from the other three branches in the province of Perugia.

Q: And if this withdrawal were to have been made somewhere else, in the province of Terni, you know perfectly… you’re an experienced police officer…
A: No because the account statement…

President: Wait until the question is finished.
Defence – Maori: You’re an experienced police officer and you well know that all the ATMs have a security camera and therefore who, and if it were to have been withdrawn effectively on that 2nd of November by means of that credit card, the person who would have made the withdrawal [194] would have surely been captured by the camera. You’d never thought of this?
A: Counsel I have already said before that the check had been made, that the camera covers the entrance to the bank and not the ATM and we had received the account extract at the end of November and the bank resets the video every week. If I need to repeat it again just tell me!

President: Don’t worry, it could also be useful to us because these are particularly technical subjects and therefore maybe sometimes…
Defence – Maori: Apart from which there’s the memory in the camera by which it is possible to effect…
President: Counsel we will take notice.
Defence – Maori: An experienced person like you would have had to effect…
A: In fact.

President: Let’s only ask questions please.
Defence – Maori: I show you now this letter from National Wide, a fax from 30 November 2007, referring, precisely, to Miss Kercher, with the reference “cash San Paolo – IMI, Perugia, 20 euro of the 2nd November, AT 1440”, it’s information naturally in your possession.
A: I have it too in fact it’s IMI-San Paolo Perugia, not Terni, Counsel.

Q: I never said Terni, I only said…
A: No, you said: “if it were to have been made at Terni”, I can tell you that for Perugia the investigations had been [195] made both at the central IMI-San Paolo office and at the three branches in the province of Perugia and the day journal of all four ATMs had no trace of this 20 euro withdrawal, neither on the 2nd nor the days before.

Q: Therefore you didn’t feel it within your scope to ask the issuing bank…
A: No, for me that line of enquiry had finished.

President: Counsel he has already given a reply to this, perhaps…
Defence – Maori: Maybe the face of the killer could have been found if things had proceeded differently! We take notice on this, it wasn’t done and therefore I’m not able to ask further questions on the point.
President: Please Counsel.
Defence – Maori: Investigations at Giovinazzo. You have spoken before in response to the Public Prosecutor’s question of the fact that you had investigative leads in relation to a wounding done by Sollecito at school and therefore you had gone to effect a transfer of these investigations. Had you seized the class rolls?
A: No, we had photocopied them and did authentications of various notes on various class rolls.

Q: And which were the notes in relation to Sollecito, these serious notes?
A: No, they weren’t serious notes, they were notes in relation to Sollecito that we had however photocopied because we had considered it advisable to do so.

Q: For example, “Sollecito plays with his pen notwithstanding [196] being reprimanded [196] for it”.
A: It was a note.

Q: Therefore when a person is accused of murder you…
President: Excuse me, Counsel, let’s avoid opinions though! Let’s stay on circumstances of fact!
Defence – Maori: Another note: “Sollecito is throwing paper pellets at his classmate”.
A: Another note Counsel.

Q: These are the notes that you have…
A: They are notes however that I had had the disposition to acquire, to verify, I had photocopied them and I had them authenticated.

Q: You hadn’t found one note that Sollecito had wounded…
A: No, because…

Q: Allow me to finish.
President: Excuse me, let’s always wait for the question to finish. Please Counsel.
Defence – Maori: You hadn’t found notes that Sollecito had wounded a classmate, boy or girl?
A: No because as I have already said before the school rolls of Molfetta Middle School, Einstein High School, Via Togliatti, had been sent for pulping because every five years they are sent for pulping and we found no trace in those rolls where maybe there was this note that we were looking for, but we had not been lucky.

President: You were looking for this on the basis of what?
A: There was an investigative lead that there had occurred, an incident during Sollecito’s scholastic attendance, [197] where there had been a girl injured with scissors and we were looking for a note of the sort, but the rolls had been sent for pulping and we had not found it.


Defence – Maori: What does “lead” mean?
President: What were you aware of? That a girl had been injured with scissors?
A: Exactly, during Sollecito’s school attendance and we had gone to see if the class rolls, during middle school and high school, were holding a note that would have referred to this incident, but unfortunately the class rolls had been pulped.

President: It could have been anyone in the class who could have occasioned this fact, not necessarily…
A: No, no, we had gone to see if there were a trace of this fact.

President: And who it might have been?
A: Exactly.

President: The hypothesis was that it could have been Raffaele Sollecito.
A: And we had gone to check, but the rolls were at the pulpers and so it had not been possible to look them up.

President: You had not been able to find neither the truth of the fact nor the author?
A: Definitely.

President: Please Counsel.
Defence – Maori: Just to clarify Mr President, seeing that your curiosity is also ours…
President: No it was a question pertinent to the question and the answer otherwise it would not have been able to be understood, it was not a curiosity. Please.
[198] Defence – Maori: This investigative lead what does it mean? Someone had said to you: “there was a wounding with scissors in Sollecito’s class”?
A: There had been report of this incident and we had gone to find out about it.

Q: But what does “there had been report” mean? An informant?
A: An informant.

Q: And this informant how…
A: I am not obliged to discuss informants.

Q: The informant’s name no, this is true, but you are obliged to tell us in what manner this information had arrived, by phone, through a person who turned up at the Police Station and had made known that a boy or a girl had been injured, this you can say.
A: By word of mouth, an encounter on the street with a person who was aware of certain things and this fact had been mentioned to him and we had gone to find out.

Q: And you found out that Sollecito was throwing paper pellets!
A: We had found out nothing because the rolls no longer existed.

Q: And he was disrupting the lesson!
President: No, excuse me Counsel. Let’s stay solely on the questions. Please.
Defence – Maori: You before had made reference to ambient intercepts, quicksanding, etc…
A: Yes.

Q: And there was reference to a proceeding in Cassation?
A: To an appeal in Cassation.

Q: A proceeding before the Supreme Court of [199] of Cassation, therefore an appeal for Cassation. Given that neither myself, Counsel Maori, nor my learned friend, Counsel Bongiorno, were the defenders at the time of the proceedings in Cassation, I was only in on the phase on the merits, not for the proceedings in Cassation, and Counsel Bongiorno had not even been nominated for any kind of proceedings, can you explain what type of quicksanding would have been carried out by these gentlemen and then if there had been any final outcomes in relation to these intercepts?
A: I have not spoken about quicksanding, I spoke of attempts to derail and quicksand and tamper.

President: Maybe these aspects can be circumstantiated.
A: There were intercepts Mr Justice on which I am not able to refer.

President: Therefore we are directed to the contents of the intercepted conversations?
A: Exactly.

President: Following these conversations however intercepted, about which you say you are not able to refer to, were you able though to carry out investigations, from succeeding investigative activity?
A: Yes, also following these intercepts the famous seizure was made of the dossier that had been made by the Sollecito family and that had been broadcast by Telenorba and by Panorama.

Defence – Maori: Were criminal proceedings begun?
A: Yes, criminal proceedings were begun which however I don’t believe form part of these proceedings, they are different proceedings.

Q: Do you know if the subjects have been investigated?
A: This I don’t know.

[200] Q: One other point Inspector. You in your experience have you done, not only in these proceedings but also in others, any activity directed with the prison for acquiring documents? In these proceedings you have acquired documents like memoirs, notebooks, from any of the accused?
A: No.

Q: You are certain of this?
A: I don’t remember, show me the record but I haven’t acquired…

Q: I’m not speaking of records, I’m speaking of…
A: If it was acquired there’s a record.

Q: I am speaking of whether if you have ever received from a non-commissioned officer of the Penitentiary Police a notebook, a memoir of Raffaele Sollecito’s from around the middle of the month of November 2007?
A: No.

Q: The notebook, this photocopied notebook, prison of Perugia, travel notes, which were the reflections of Raffaele Sollecito and which should have been handed over to us lawyers, were photocopied inside prison and they were handed over by whoever.
A: To me?

Q: Can you confirm this circumstance or not?
A: I’m telling you no.

President: Excuse me, Counsel. He has already twice replied no.
Defence – Maori: Let’s formalise his negative response in a more forceful manner, and then we will see in the course of the proceedings if his declarations are truthful or not. I ask its acquisition, or rather I would like to produce therefore I ask acquisition into the documents of the court file of the two annotations of the 19 November 2007, [201] of the 28 November 2007 of Inspector Volturno, as well as a copy of Raffaele Sollecito’s class rolls from Molfetta High’s third class, as well as a copy of the San Paolo corporation letter of 4 January 2008, signed by the manager Paolo Farsi.
A: Sorry for interrupting, those photocopies are from the Giovinazzo middle school, not from Molfetta High.

Q: Yes, from the middle school.
President: So they’re from the middle school?
A: Yes, from the middle school because as I’ve been saying those from the high school…

President: And how come, do they have a different practice?
A: They have a different archival philosophy.

President: On these requests? But the Public Prosecutor had asked for the production of the San Paolo corporation letter.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: But why are we always making triplicate productions, we have already produced it.
Defence – Maori: It’s your letter.
President: The Public Prosecutor has produced the letter.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: Then it’s Public Prosecutor production.
President: Yes, it’s Public Prosecutor production and the others are Raffaele Sollecito Defence productions.

Notice is taken that, given the absence of opposition, they are to be acquired for the purposes of utilisability.


Defence – Bongiorno
[202] Q: Counsel Bongiorno. Respecting the three politicians to which you have made reference to in the ambient intercepts, you have carried out subsequent investigations yourself personally, or did others, to see if these politicians had committed breaches, were they enrolled on the notification of crime register; or were they politicians, these three to which you have referred, mentioned in the ambit of conversations, and then that’s it, finished?
A: Mentioned in the ambit of conversations as persons to be looked at.

Q: Have you investigated if then effectively these politicians had been contacted, had they pressured Cassation?
A: No.

Q: Respecting instead the Telenorba thing…

President: Excuse me Counsel, you hadn’t investigated or else there were no…
A: No, I hadn’t investigated, they only emerged from the intercepts as persons who…

Defence – Bongiorno: Because then confusion is created, in the intercepts there are these names, those that I have understood and he has confirmed to me, then they haven’t followed through on investigations on these matters and that’s it, finished. Instead the fact of Telenorba is a fact on which investigations do exist or don’t they.
A: There are investigations, the dossier had been seized.

Q: Who’s following up on the investigations?
A: Bari I think.

Q: The Public Prosecutor’s Office of Bari?
A: Yes.

Q: With respect to these investigations, do you know what outcome they’ve reached?
A: No.

Q: When were they begun?
A: I think after the seizure of the dossier, of the [203] video cassettes, of the materials.

President: Therefore what period are we in?
A: This I don’t know, I don’t remember.

Defence – Bongiorno: Do you know if case archivation was requested, or of remand to trial? You don’t know anything about this?
A: No, I don’t know.

Q: That is you at that point, in terms of jurisdictional competency as to what was relating to the Telenorba matter, Bari was dealing with it. Is this the idea?
A: Definitely.

Q: And so then you don’t know what…
A: No.

Q: No other questions.


Defence – Dalla Vedova: Counsel Dalla Vedova for Ms Knox. I wanted two clarifications, the first in relation to the activity that you had carried out in dealing with the Marco Quintavalle matter.
A: Yes.

Q: You have said that you had asked the manager of the commercial enterprise if he had ever seen the two accused.
A: Exactly.

Q: Exactly what was the response?
A: He said that Sollecito was a usual customer while Amanda Knox had been seen on a couple of occasions in company with Sollecito.

Q: You asked this question of the other managers?
A: Yes, I went round all the shops in the street, but the others hadn’t recognised them.

Q: In Corso Garibaldi?
[204] A: Yes. The only other one who had recognised Sollecito’s photo was the other Conad above his place, where he had been seen one or two times, rarely however.

Q: And Amanda?
A: No, Amanda no.

Q: You carried out other investigations in the surrounding zones or just in Corso Garibaldi?
A: Corso Garibaldi and surrounding zones but I did not…

Q: But still all business concerns?
A: Yes, business concerns that had that product on sale, the famous bleach that then had been seized, it was done due to that.

Q: Therefore only business concerns that were selling this product, not in general?
A: Exactly, no.

Q: In relation to another activity where you appear to have participated in, that is the 16 November search of Sollecito’s house, in the objects collected there appear the entire contents of the topmost drawer of the kitchen cupboard, specifically 6 spoons, 4 knives, 5 (..) , 2 ladles, 1 breadknife with serrated edge 35 cm in length in total. You are aware that there already had been, a seizure had been made from that same drawer of another knife?
A: This no because I had gone back to work on 7 November and the day after I did the first search in Sollecito’s house where the clothing and intimate apparel were seized and then the second time, the 16th, the one that you are referring to, I participated in the search but I didn’t enter inside the house and they were bringing me the envelopes that I was putting into a big box about which I’m not able to tell you what there was in the envelopes, I can see from the subsequent record.

Q: I wanted to know whether you had already been ordered on a seizure…
[205] A: No, because I had come back to work on the 7th and that day when that seizure was done I wasn’t there.

Q: Because it appears that…
A: The seizure of that knife that you are talking about had been done when I was still not back at work, I came back on the 7th.

Q: However you knew that already…
A: No, I became aware gradually that investigations were going forward but I did not know that.

Q: Therefore when did you come to know of it? On the 16th you had gone at 16:30…
A: Yes.

Q: At 16:30 you already knew that in the case in hand Dr Chiacchiera and his assistants had already organised the seizure of a single knife on the 6th November.
A: I on the 16th knew what we had seized that day, not what had been seized prior because given that there were multiple apartments and a whole flood of…

Q: No, I was not asking you if you knew.
A: No, I didn’t know.

Q: I was asking if you knew if there had been a seizure already done at that house.
A: No I didn’t know, I came to know about it subsequently.

Q: Therefore after your one?
A: After.

Q: All the same you are aware that there exists a seized 31 cm knife with a 17cm blade retrieved from the same drawer?
A: If it’s that one in the kitchen yes.

Q: You know today.
A: No, not today, I knew about it before but in any case not on the date you’re saying, subsequently.

[206] Q: Thank you.


Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: You are aware of an article appearing in Panorama recently on the case containing an interview with members of the Sollecito family.
A: No, I am not aware of this.

Q: Thank you.


Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: Let’s go back for a moment to the bleach. You have perfectly described the investigations that you did, including on the items, the various items that had been sent from PAC 2000 to the two shops in Corso Garibaldi, therefore I won’t go back to that because I imagine the Court has understood perfectly. You have also said that the bleach found, one of the two?
A: Yes.

Q: One of the two containers found in Sollecito’s house had… you can repeat it, a sticker?
A: The Conad-Margherita sticker with the price.

Q: With the price?
A: 0.85.

Q: Which therefore corresponded according to your investigations to what item?
A: To a consignment of bleach to one or other shop before the 11th of October.

Q: And had they been sold out before the 11th?
A: No, usually the shopkeeper puts an order in for a new box when he sees they are getting close to finishing.

Q: When was the subsequent reorder?
A: The subsequent consignment was the 5th of November and from the 11th of October the PAC-recommended price was €1.09, while up until the 11th of October it was €0.85.

[207] Q: When you had spoken of an old sticker what did you mean?
A: That it was a bit worn on top.

Q: And that the price was old?
A: No, the price was legible, with the magnifying lens you could in fact read it was corresponding to the price that was in force prior to the 11th of October.

Q: When you had interviewed Raffaele Sollecito’s cleaning lady…
A: (Kiriboga) or Natalia?

Q: The one you had asked… let’s put it this way: what questions did you ask both of them as regards the bleach?
A: If they had ever used bleach inside Sollecito’s residence.

Q: And what had they replied?
A: Natalia, who is the one who actually did the last cleaning, up to Monday 5th…

Defence – Maori: Can we have the other two answer directly when they are heard?
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: There is no prohibition on this because they are on the witness list.
Defence – Maori: I ask for the contents of the declarations!
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: Yes, but they are on the witness list therefore there is no prohibition, the important thing is that the main witnesses are then heard.
Defence –Maori: No, the member of the Prosecutor’s Office cannot answer on this.
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: No, I can refer to it [208] then, why not?

President: Excuse me, everybody….
Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: We’re arguing a point of procedure, but you can mention the main things that were said to you and have been said to you.

President: Therefore you had interviewed…
A: Yes, both the two girls who were doing the cleaning at Raffaele Sollecito’s house. Natalia, who was the one who had actually done the cleaning until 5 November 2007, had said that she had never used bleach because Raffaele Sollecito asked her to use Lysoform, that is she was using Lysoform inside Sollecito’s house, Viakal and other products but never bleach and she didn’t remember seeing the two containers under the sink. While (Kiriboga), when she was interviewed, subsequent to the meeting at the Maori law firm, said that a container had been used by her to wash the floor rags and for this reason she had asked Sollecito to buy some bleach, he went out and came back with another container which was likewise Ace bleach, same as the first, and with which she then washed those rags and remembered well that under the sink there were two containers, one half full and the other full.

Q: And this washing when would it go back to?
A: So then (Kiriboga) told us she had been working as a cleaning lady at Sollecito’s house until the end of September, then due to the state of her pregnancy she sent her friend.

Q: And how had you found these containers when you had seized them?
[209] A: One was half full and the other was full.

Q: Therefore the woman, let’s repeat this again one more time, the woman who instead did the cleaning subsequently?
A: Subsequently to this she said she had never seen the two containers in the house.


Civil party – Maresca: Counsel Maresca for the Kercher family. Inspector a clarification if you can tell us the people who were placed under telephone intercepts.
A: So then there was Francesco Sollecito, Vanessa Sollecito…

Q: Tell us also the…
A: Francesco Sollecito is the father, Vanessa Sollecito is the sister, then there was Francesco Sollecito’s current wife, Marisa Papagni, then there was the uncle, Giuseppe Sollecito, then there were still more people forming part of the family but I don’t remember the names.

Q: These phone intercepts were all carried out by you?
A: Yes, by me and by my colleagues.

Q: They were all authorized with the relative writ obviously?
A: Yes, they weren’t only telephonic, they were also ambient.

Q: You have mentioned earlier about attempted pressuring of political personages etc. Can you tell us the names of these political personages?
A: Yes, I have already said them before…

Q: And then they became the object of intercepts themselves, that is I’ll frame the question like this, did you also intercept the phone call of the political personage or else was it just as matter of choice?
A: No, it was a matter of choice, phone [210] calls to these people had not been intercepted and in any case the politicians were the Honourable Nania, the Honourable Formisano and the Honourable Mastella.

Q: Do you remember…
A: Persons who were named by them as possible…

Q: When you say “by them”, by everybody or by some members in particular?
A: By some members of the family, above all by the father and the sister.

Q: Do you remember if the lawsuits by the Kercher family for the Telenorba incident and for the Panorama incident had been filed at Perugia or at Bari?
A: This I don’t remember, in any case I know that Bari is proceeding as regards concerning the seizure of the material broadcast by Telenorba.

Q: Thank you.


President
Q: But the two people who were working at Raffaele Sollecito’s house, you took their witness statements [the SIs]?
A: Yes.

Q: Therefore those circumstances you were referring to them on the basis…
A: Yes, of the SIs.

Q: The house in use by Raffaele Sollecito how big is it? If you remember?
A: So then I seem to recall that it gives out onto a landing on the ground floor, there is the front door, there’s the kitchen on the right, a room used as a kitchen, then there is the bathroom immediately to the left of the front door, then stairs go up and there’s the bedroom upstairs.

Q: Therefore it covers these environments?
A: Yes.

[211] Q: And you before have hinted at the presence of the odour of bleach when…
A: Yes, when you go in there’s the kitchen and you could smell the odour of bleach.

Q: Where was it, was there a place where there was more…
A: Yes, the kitchen because there’s the tiled floor and given that the apartment was placed under sequestration and sealed when I went for the first time on the 8th of November to do the search this bleach odour was still permeating the inside.

Q: And the bleach in the kitchen environment?
A: In the kitchen environment.

Q: Although the kitchen was tiled.
A: It was tiled.

Q: The other environments instead, what type of flooring was there?
A: Look I think there might have been parquetry in the bedroom but I’m not sure.

Q: Very well, you may go.


Trial: More Testimony On Knox Acting Weird After Meredith Was Murdered

Posted by Peter Quennell




Overview

Click above for the full ABC website report.

Perhaps ABC News is attempting to turn over a new leaf here. Long conspicuous for banging the PR-inspired drum about a frame-up of Knox by those meanie Italians, ABC now seems the one American network attempting its own reporting.

This story was written by Ann Wise, apparently in Rome on 13 and 14 March,  with Zach Nowak, an American resident of Perugia, in the courtroom.

Witnesses on these two days included investigators D’Astolto and Volturno and interpreters Colantone and Donnino.


1) Testimony about Knox hitting herself on the head

Fabio D’Astolto, an English-speaking police officer in Perugia, told the court today that he was asked to come to the police station on Nov. 2, 2007, the day Kercher’s body was found, to help question Knox.

“She seemed calm, as if nothing had happened, while everyone else was crying,” said D’Astolto. However, when D’Astolto accompanied Knox to have her fingerprints taken, he said Knox “paced up and down the hallway pretty nervously, and brought her hands to her head, hitting herself on the temples.”

D’Astolto said her behavior worried him, and he offered to get her something to drink, but Knox said she was fine.

At bottom here is a full translation of this testimony by Catnip.


2) Testimony about Knox shaking uncontrollably back at the house

Another interpreter, Ada Colantone, described Knox’s behavior two days later when she and the two Italian women who also shared the Perugia apartment were taken back to confirm that the knives found in the kitchen belonged there. Knox “started shaking,” recounted Colantone.

“She was shaking so hard that the coroner went over to her. She was visibly upset, and made to lie down on the couch.” She said Knox also began crying.


3) Testimony about Knox’s “emotional shock” at seeing Patrick’s text message

Anna Donnino, an interpreter for the Perugia police, said she was summoned to the police station to translate just after midnight. Knox was calm as police talked to her again about what she had been doing the evening of Nov. 1, the night Kercher was slain, Donnino said.

But Knox had an “emotional shock” when she was shown a text message she had sent to Patrick Lumumba, her boss at the pub where she worked occasionally. “She brought her hands to her head, and shook it,” Donnino told the court. And also: “It’s him, he did it, I can feel it,” referring to Lumumba.

The questioning stopped, and when Knox was asked if she wanted a lawyer, she said no, according to Donnino. Donnino repeatedly confirmed that Knox was never mistreated, and made her statements voluntarily.

Included in this post is a transcript of Anna Donnino translated by Catnip.


4) Testimony about Chief Inspector Oreste Volturno’s investigations

He testified that he took part in the search of Raffaele’s place; and investigated when and where the bleach found there was purchased, and investigated the 20 euro withdrawal from Meredith’s account, and tried to track down Raffaele’s school and police records; and also participated in the seizure of material from the Telenorba TV station after their broadcast had gone to air.

On the next post here is a full translation of this testimony by Catnip.


5) Finally, Knox rose in the court today to attempt some damage control:

In Italian courtrooms, defendants are allowed to make statements during their trial, and Knox stood today to refute the police depiction that they treated her well and that her statements were made voluntarily.

In a respectful but insistent tone, Knox said in clear Italian, “The witnesses are denying things about the interrogation. There were hours and hours that they don’t talk about, during which I confirmed my story and there was an aggressive insistence on the text message to Patrick,” she said.


6) Translation Of Testimony Of Assistant Fabio D’Astolto

Fabio Astolfo helped translate during interviews, helped with food and drink from the vending machines, and observed Amanda hitting herself while on the way to get her fingerprints taken.

Transcript translated is of testimony given in the hearing of 13 March 2009, pp 68-84

[68]
Depositions of the witness Fabio D’Astolto

The witness, admonished pursuant to Article 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, reads the oath.

Particulars: Assistant Fabio D’Astolto, with the Perugia Police – Flying Section; born 22 July 1972 in Sydney (Australia).

President: Mr Public Prosecutor.

Public Prosecutor, Dr Mignini
QUESTION: You on the date of 2 November 2007 were in service at the Perugia Police Station, in which office in particular?
ANSWER: I was at the Flying Section of the Station.

Q: You were born in Australia?
A: Yes.

Q: Your mother tongue is English?
A: Yes, yes, I lived in Australia until 14 years of age, I studied several…

Q: I wanted to know this, you remember the murder of Meredith Kercher, you took part in investigation activity or anyway had been called in relation [69] to the investigations that were being carried out?
A: I had been simply called as someone knowing English the afternoon of the 2nd.

Q: Do you remember the exact time?
A: It was afternoon but the exact time, exactly I don’t remember.

Q: Were you there in the Police Station?
A: I was at home and then they had called me from the Station saying that they needed a person who obviously knew the English language, I did nothing else but take the car and go to the Station.

Q: You knew that Meredith Kercher was dead and how she died?
A: No.

Q: What did you know?
A: I knew that there was a decease, but how…

Q: Knew from whom?
A: Yes, then when I had arrived at the Station that I went to the office they had mentioned that there was an English girl but I absolutely didn’t know how this girl had died.

Q: So it could even have been a natural death?
A: For me it could have been a natural death, suicide, I don’t know, anything.

Q: So no one had informed you?
A: No.

Q: So you arrive at the Station and then what happens?
A: I arrive at the Station, I go into the Inspector’s office, I go in, I sit down beside the Inspector and I begin, in quotes, to translate what they were asking me and then I was referring, that is I was re-translating the words of the signorina.

Q: You’d spent…
A: This was my job. Miss Amanda.

[70] Q: You’d spent how many hours at the Station?
A: A lot, up until around seven in the morning, more or less.

Q: You had in practice carried out the functions of an interpreter?
A: Yes, simply translating what was asked and then the reply.

Q: By Amanda Knox?
A: Yes.

Q: Can you say what behaviour Amanda had?
A: Her behaviour was, in my opinion, enough…

Intervention: No, not your opinion, let’s avoid evaluations!

President: Like a photograph.
A: Yes. Her behaviour was one thing only, in the sense that it seemed to me to be something calm enough, as if absolutely nothing had happened, this was her behaviour.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Were there also other girls?
A: Yes, there were other friends, I think acquaintances, anyway there were other girls inside the Station, at the Flying [Squad] and they were all obviously tried.

Q: What were they doing?
A: They were seated quietly, they were really… some were crying, some were a bit distressed obviously by the event.

Q: Amanda, you had seen her also waiting to be heard or else you’d seen her only in the…
A: I had seen Amanda for the entire span of time that I was inside the Police Station because obviously then we were there also with the other persons, every now and then I was accompanying some girl down to get something to drink, something to eat, we have a little [71] automatic machine, a vending machine downstairs, so if they needed anything we were always obviously at their disposal.

Q: You saw her with Sollecito in the Station?
A: Yes, yes.

Q: This when, before being heard or after?
A: After.

Q: And after what was she doing?
A: There’s a small waiting room there by the Flying Squad offices where there was obviously everyone, the ones who were waiting to be heard etc etc, their behaviour they were kissing each other, they were hugging, every now and then they were laughing.

Q: Were they talking to each other?
A: Yes, they were talking also between themselves.

Q: Were they talking in a loud voice?
A: A lowered voice, I in fact had heard absolutely nothing of what they were saying. They were talking amongst themselves.

Q: But they had said something at that moment or one of the two…
A: Every now and then, I remember that Sollecito asked me once: “But what time are we finishing?” and I had simply told him: “a bit of patience, we’ll try and finish as quickly as we can”, to stay calm for a sec, it takes what it takes.

Q: You’ heard her first at the beginning, that is you’d translated the questions and the answers.
A: I had simply translated the questions that the Inspector had asked and then I’d referred obviously to Amanda, always asking her: “you’ve understood?” and then as Amanda was going me the reply I simply retranslated for the Inspector.

Q: She was demonstrating an ability to in part understand Italian?
[72] A: Yes, yes, she was understanding also because I more than once had asked her “Have you understood? Do I need to repeat the question?”, so.

Q: Then you had also seen her subsequently? Had there been things ascertained?
A: Yes, then I think that it was around four, now I don’t remember well, in the morning obviously, I had accompanied her down where there’s the Scientific Police to take her prints, for the mugshots basically. We had gone down, no problems, then at a certain point along the corridor, right in front of the Scientifica there’s a corridor, she was walking up and down in a quite nervous manner and every now and then she was taking her hands and she was putting them like this on her head, she was hitting herself a bit like this. I at a certain point I started to get a bit worried, if she was feeling ill, I don’t know. Then I asked: “Do you need some water? Do you want a coffee? Do you want to sit down for a bit? Don’t worry yourself, stay calm” and I remember that she had turned round as if to say… in fact she’d said to me: “no, no, I don’t want anything, I don’t need anything”. I’d left it at that, I’d said: “OK, it’s no trouble at all’, if you don’t need anything”.

Q: These blows she was giving herself…
A: Basically she was making this gesture here.

Q: Were they strong?
President: A gesture where she was lifting both her hands simultaneously to the height of her temples?
A: Yes, of her head.

President: Repeatedly?
A: Yes.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: She was hitting herself on the head with her hands or just lifting her hands to her head and that’s it?
A: No, no, she was hitting herself.

[73] Q: You have said in the statement of 21 December 2007 “strong enough”, you were saying that she was hitting herself rather hard, at page 10.
A: Yes I confirm that.

Q: You then tried, you insisted?
A: Seeing this scene I became worried and asked her: “Do you need some water? Do you need a coffee? Do you need something? Do we want to go a bit to the machines and get something?”

President: This, when is it that… what time are we at, what day are we at, can you make it precise?
A: It was around four in the morning of the 3rd, so at night basically, around four in the morning if I’m not mistaken. Nothing, I asked her if she needed anything, she turned round and said, “no, I don’t need anything!”, “sorry, OK”.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Did you by chance hear what they were saying to each other, what she was saying?
A: No.

Q: What she was saying not only to Sollecito, but in the event to the other girls present, to the young English people for example?
A: No, I don’t remember having heard anything, also because she was whispering quietly.

Q: And after having taken her to the Scientifica she left there?
A: Yes, then I accompanied her back up.

Q: How was she after the mugshots actually?
A: She was calm enough and settled herself back down in the waiting room.

Q: So these blows to the head, she was giving them to herself before going to the Scientifica?
A: While we were downstairs, when we had gone down to the [74] Scientifica…

Defence – Bongiorno: Mr President excuse me because while I’ve been talking to Sollecito, and asking him questions, we have documents on the computer, it’s an electronic instrument…
Intervention: It’s linked to the Internet, Mr President!
Defence – Bongiorno: {incomprehensible – overlap of voices}
President: Everybody! Please, I point out that the order of proceeding in this hearing at this moment is… given the defenders may speak with each other, there are no particular security reasons for which the accused need a different location, they can remain where they are, they can talk and also consult the documents they’re consulting. Please continue…
A: Then actually while we were down at the Scientifica, I repeat around four in the morning, more or less that was the time, we had gone down, at the moment in which we had entered the corridor where there was the door to the Scientifica, she started to walk up and down the corridor making this gesture of lifting her hands.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: Multiple times, this?
A: Multiple times, yes.

Q: But you had asked her questions? Had there been something, had you encountered someone?
A: Nobody, we hadn’t encountered anybody, I had taken her and accompanied her downstairs.

Q: And as soon as you had arrived downstairs…
[75] A: As soon as we had arrived downstairs we entered into the corridor where the Scientific is she had started to make this gesture and to walk obviously nervously up and down the corridor.

Q: You didn’t occupy yourself with asking any more questions?
A: No, absolutely.

Q: Then you accompanied her back and that was it?
A: I’d accompanied her back up and then I did other things.

Q: I have no further questions.

Defence – Ghirga:

Counsellor Ghirga, Amanda Knox defence. It was the 2nd of November when they called you, true?
A: Yes.

Q: Now 15:30 or 16:30 we’re in the Police Station. You were at home, you said?
A: Yes.

Q: Was your morning shift finished, or else were you on holidays? You were at home?
A: Yes, I was at home in any case.

Q: And they were calling you for?
A: They were calling me saying…

Q: You were at home, but I asked you: had you finished your shift, were you on holidays?
A: Honestly I don’t remember. I was simply at my home where a call arrived from the Station saying that they needed a person who knew English. No problem, I did nothing else but take the car and go into the Station.

Q: So you take the car and go to the Station?
A: Yes.

Q: Why are you still today saying: “for me, it could have been an accidental death?” If they were calling you that [76] first afternoon, you go to the Station…
A: For only a bit.

Q: You’ve used this expression.
A: Then, for a bit only…

Q: Mr President he cannot contest what I’m saying!
A: No, I’m not contesting anybody, if you make me respond I will explain.

President: He’s not contesting, he’s waiting to be able to respond.
A: If I’m made to respond I will explain everything.

President: The defence is asking how come they were calling you at home…
A: They called me at home.

President: You knew if there was…
A: No, absolutely, I went up to the Station, I entered the Inspector’s office, I sat myself down and I began to translate, that’s it.

Defence – Ghirga: I’m a step before that, you have said: “for me it could have been an accidental death”, yet you say: “once I arrived at the Station I was informed about something”, is that so? Relating to the death of the girl.
A: Now then after ten minutes or so, twenty minutes, I don’t remember perfectly now, obviously I tried to understand what might have happened, but I was aware that there had been a decease, but I was unaware for what reason.

Q: A couple of questions on the modality of exercising the interpretative activity.
A: Yes.

Q: So you get to be called because you know English, you’ve said, and it couldn’t have been anyone else but, who was translating Inspector Ficcara’s questions.
A: Yes.

[77] Q: Therefore questions in Italian translated into English for Amanda Knox, Amanda was replying and you were translating into Italian the replies given in English?
A: Yes.

Q: Is that so?
A; Yes.

Q: You were translating the questions and you were translating the answers?
A: Exactly.

Q: In the first three pages of the statement of the 2nd, which is in the case file, I don’t see one question, can you explain why?
A: By question is meant, obviously in the moment in which we were taking the summaries [the SIs] it needed a second to say: “What do you call…”

Q: No, no, no, excuse me for interrupting, you’re going ahead. I don’t see one question asked by Inspector Ficcara and translated by you, how come?
President: Counsel is asking, in the statement you had said…
Defence – Ghirga: Not the personal details or the address.
President: You’ve said that you were translating the questions that were being put to Amanda Knox, but Counsel is saying: “I can’t find the questions in the statement”.
A: In the moment in which I was being asked to translate what it was called, where it was obviously needed to formalise the summaries.

President: Yes, but at the moment of the exposition of the facts, who was transcribing it into the record?
A: The Inspector.

President: You were translating into Italian and into English?
A: Yes.

Defence – Ghirga: Then he doesn’t remember, he doesn’t know why the questions were not translated.
[78] Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: But translated or transcribed?
Defence – Ghirga: Listen, in the first three pages there isn’t…
President: Counsel it’s clear.
Defence – Ghirga: It was only to understand the modality and that’s it.
President: Do you know how come the questions weren’t also put into the record?
Defence – Ghirga: When he says: “I was translating the questions”, he’s not saying something true because the questions aren’t there.
President: Excuse me, Counsel, please! Why aren’t the questions you say you were translating also reported in the record, if you know.
A: I don’t know.

Defence – Ghirga: And the last three are: “RTQ – replies to question”, here as well do you know why?
A: I don’t know.

Q: Do you know at what time the bar at the Station opens in the morning?
A: The Station bar varies, the times vary every now and then, in the sense that if there’s a service or anything else, a special service, I don’t know, usually they also open earlier, usually around a quarter past seven, 7:20, I don’t know the opening times exactly because I hardly ever go there.

President: Who manages the bar? Internal Station personnel?
A: No, no, if I’m not wrong they’re external, they have a contract [79] if I’m not mistaken.

President: So they are called in for a particular need?
A: It happens, it’s happened often.

Defence – Ghirga: No, I haven’t understood then.
A: The opening hours…

Q: You’ve answered about the opening hours, there’s no bar inside the Station?
A: Yes, it is, of course! Sure there is!

Q: You’ve said no now.
A: It’s on the first floor.

Q: Who manages it? Someone private?
A: I think that it might be someone private.

Q: You don’t know the opening hours?
A: Exactly, no, because I hardly ever go there, I’ve been only a very few times.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: Just one clarification: do you remember the exact time that you arrived at the Station?
A: Frankly I don’t remember because I wasn’t standing there with a watch, usually I don’t even wear a watch.

Q: Was it in the afternoon or in the evening?
A: No, no, in the afternoon.

Q: Could we say around five or around six?
A: No, it was earlier, at five or six I was already in the Station, it was earlier, much earlier.

President: It was still daytime?
A: Yes, yes.

President: Daytime still?
A: Yes, yes.

President: It’s November, it was still daytime, afternoon.
[80] A: Yes, although I repeat I don’t remember the precise time because I don’t wear a watch, out of habit, and I wasn’t there either to look at the clock honestly, they had called me, they needed someone, I take the car and go, inasmuch as I had no particular need at home and I went.

President: He doesn’t recall. Please, Counsel.
Defence – Dalla Vedova: You carried out the function of interpreter also with the other non-Italian girls who were present at the Station, true?
A: Yes.

Q: Exactly what did you do? Were you translating questions also for them?
A: I have to repeat, my job was to translate…

Q: I’ve understood that, I asked you if you also interpreted for the other girls, for example Ms Jade Bidwell?
A: Yes.

Q: And also other girls as well?
A: Yes, I remember having also done translation for the other girls.

Q: It was always an interview with an Italian functionary who was asking questions in Italian and you were translating into English and then the English person was answering in English and you were translating into Italian or was there…
A: There were summary informations [SIs].

Q: Was it only an enquiry if they needed something, like you referred to earlier, because you were also concerned with offering them a coffee, some water, taking them downstairs.
A: Certainly. Now the point is this: we are human beings to start with, so if a person needs something we have to… if they need a coffee, a glass of water, something else, there are [81] machines downstairs, they’re accompanied downstairs and they’re given it, that’s it. We aren’t…

President: Yes, but Counsel was asking, in addition to this activity, which before you had described in relation to Amanda Knox, you have also carried out the function of interpreter and in the examination of Amanda Knox and also in the examination of the other English girls.
A: Sure.

President: How many other English girls if you’re able to recall? All of them or …
A: No, now I don’t recall, I think it might have been three, now I don’t remember exactly.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: Do you remember having taken part in the statementing of the SIs of Jade Bidwell, mentioned earlier, on the 2nd at 21:30?
A: Possibly yes, although I repeat I frankly don’t remember the names. I don’t remember the names of these girls.

Q: Another clarification in relation to your activity at the Police Station, when you took Ms Knox to the Scientifica to do the prints and photos had you informed her what thing you were going to do?
A: Yes.

Q: And what did you say to her?
A: I said to her that we were going downstairs, that we had to take these prints and that’s it, like what was done with all of the others.

Q: And you also accompanied the other English girls in this activity?
A: I don’t remember, I think no.

Q: You don’t remember?
A: I don’t remember, I honestly don’t remember.

Q: But the other girls also had had the same [82] necessity to do the ID-ing with their fingerprints?
A: I think so, I say I think.

Q: But they were foreigners, was there someone helping the girls in explaining what was happening? If you were with Amanda how was it done? Was there someone else?
A: The point is also this, that some of these girls were also understanding Italian a bit, therefore definitely my colleagues had explained it to them definitely, then I must reiterate I am only one person.

Q: There was some other interpreter that evening?
A: I don’t think so.

Q: So you, from the afternoon of the 2nd until four in the morning of the 3rd, were the sole official interpreter who was working inside the Police Station for all the foreigners, for all the foreign girls?
A: Yes, I think so.

President: You were however the only one, that’s what he’s asking, that you knew about?
A: That I know of I think it was only me.

Defence – Dalla Vedova:

In this whole period of time you had always stayed near Amanda?
A: During the summaries and then when I took her for the prints and mugshots, then I was present while she and the other friends and with the other friends were in the Squad office, in the waiting room, so I was there next to the wall, standing there, watching.

Q: And listening to the conversations?
A: No.

Q: But if you were standing there…
A: Obviously when they were talking aloud I was hearing something, but it wasn’t that I was…

Q: Do you remember if Ms Knox’s phone rang, [83] did she receive calls?
A: This I don’t remember.

Q: Do you remember if Ms Knox had made calls?
A: I don’t remember this either frankly.

Q: Do you remember whether in translating the questions the subject of sexual activity had been put to Ms Knox? If anyone had asked her questions on this subject?
A: I don’t remember.

Q: You don’t remember this subject?
A: No.

Q: And do you instead remember the subject of the vaseline? Whether this question in relation to a presumed usage or in any case the presence of this material had been put?
A: This I absolutely don’t remember. This is news to me, I don’t remember.

Q: You remember in any case whether Amanda Knox had a phone?
A: If I’m not mistaken yes, I think yes.

Q: And the other young people had a phone?
A: I think so, some had used it, I think so.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: But this is cross-examination, they’re not questions…
President: Let’s limit it to what was the examination.
Defence – Dalla Vedova: Although seeing that he was changing his stance and that he had acknowledged the fact that…
President: In fact these questions are being put.
Defence – Dalla Vedova: Since it appears from the documents that almost everyone was making phone calls, it would have helped me [84] to understand how come he can claim that the young people were quiet, therefore I wanted to know if anyone had made calls for example to their parents or in any case at that moment.
President: So he remembers that they had them, from their behaviour, under this aspect.
Defence – Dalla Vedova: Exactly, under the aspect of their behaviour, when he had claimed that the other girls were quiet, I wanted to better understand what led him to that conclusion, that’s all. Thank you, I have finished the examination.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: Only one question: when the bar in the Police Station is closed, if you want to have a coffee, a tea, a brioche, a bottle of water, do you have to go outside?
A: No, actually on floor zero, on the ground floor…

Q: Which is the same floor where there is the bar also?
A: No, the bar is on the first floor. So on the ground floor there are three small machines, one for drinks, the other obviously for snacks etc etc, then there’s the other one for coffee, like those outside.

Q: Which work 24 hours a day?
A: Yes, yes, 24 hours a day.

Q: Is the electricity switched off?
A: No, 24-hour, they’re always on.

Q: Thank you.

President: Very well, you may go.

- - -
Note: “fotosegnalazione” – “the taking by police authorities of a person’s fingerprints and face-on and profile photos for identification purposes” ([Italian Neologism Observatory]) – has been translated here as ‘(fingerprinting and) mug shots’, according to context. Usage of the term carries no imputed meaning as to legal status.



On the next post here is a full translation of the testimony of Chief Inspector Oreste Volturno by Catnip.


Trial: More Breaking News From Today’s Trial Session On Sollecito’s Questioning

Posted by Peter Quennell




Sollecito’s Questioning At Questura 5-6 November 2007

Quote from an Associated Press report from the trial:

A police officer has testified that an Italian suspect was carrying a knife when he was taken to a police station in the hours that followed the stabbing death of a British student in Italy.

Rome police investigator Daniele Moscatelli told a court in Perugia on Friday that defendant Raffaele Sollecito looked “confused and nervous” during the questioning and that he was carrying a “long” knife in his pocket. The knife is not believed to be the murder weapon.

Another police officer testified that American co-defendant Amanda Knox nervously walked up and down at the station and was hitting her head with her hands.

There is a full translation of Moscatelli’s testimony by main poster Catnip at bottom.

New Scenario Suggested By Eavesdropped Accused

Italian media are reporting that a police-station staff member has testified that, during a bugged conversation between Raffaele and Amanda on November 4 2007, Knox made reference to another person, “perhaps to a black man.”

The witness said that led the police to develop a hypotheses that there could have been someone else in the Via della Pergola house at the time.

Sollecito Claims He Was Sent Home Shoeless

Italian media are reporting that Sollecito rose in court to explain his apparent confusion at the police station. He said “I was unable to contact them (my father’s lawyer”) and so there were long pauses while he waited.

Also [updated from another report] Sollecito explained why he was not wearing any shoes [this seems new public information] after his interrogation. He said they were removed for testing and he had no shoes on “until I went back to my own house.” He said. “I walked back barefoot in the street and ... nobody gave me a pair of shoes. “

Inspection of Knox’s Outgoing Letters

Italian media are also reporting that a translator has testified that hundreds of letters, more than 600, written and received by Amanda Knox in jail from day of her arrest until last spring, have been translated as part of the investigation. Letters were sent and received by the student from Seattle and from friends and relatives. To perform the long task of translating, Aida Colantoni, an interpreter of the Ministry of the Interior, was employed by the police in Perugia.

Italian media are also reporting that the interpreter, Aida Colantoni, testified that there appeared to be nothing incriminating in the 600 letters, and that Knox would in any case have suspected all prison mail is checked out.

The interpreter said the translation would be useful to provide the prosecutors with a profile of Knox during the interrogation and inspection. Knox had been described by agents as always cold or unusual because she did not seem sorry or upset at the death of Meredith, but the interpreter found her a seemingly different person.

Translation of Daniele Moscatelli’s testimony

This was kindly provided by Catnip.

Transcript of testimony given in the hearing of 13 March 2009, pp 46-67

Depositions of the witness Daniele Moscatelli

The witness, admonished pursuant to Article 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, reads the oath.

Particulars: Deputy-Superintendent of the State Police Daniele Moscatelli, born in Rome on 15 May 1972 and currently in service at the Central Operations Service of the State Police.

President: Mr Prosecutor.

Public Prosecutor, Dr Mignini

QUESTION: You have carried out investigations on the death of Meredith Kercher?
ANSWER: Yes.

Q: Do you remember when you had arrived in Perugia and what activity you’d carried out?
A: I’d arrived in Perugia on the 2nd of November, in the late afternoon, from Rome, together with Deputy Commissioner Adjunct Giobbi, Doctor Edgardo Giobbi , in the late afternoon. We arrive in Perugia and we proceed to Via della Pergola, where on the outside of the house we find already present on site the Public Prosecutor, the Perugia Flying Squad and the Scientific Police. I was asked, almost immediately, to the offices of the Flying Squad to carry out SIs of potential witnesses who, one by one, were asked to the offices of the Flying Squad. This had happened on the 2nd.

Q: You’d entered into the apartment at Via della Pergola?
A: No, absolutely not, I immediately was asked… then other colleagues from Rome also arrived and were assigned to this type of activity.

Q: Then?
A: I personally was asked to go the Marches, to Port Saint George, if I’m not mistaken, to verify the depositions, the testimonies given by the neighbours who were below the apartment where the murder had occurred, on the 3rd.

Q: The following day you carried out normal office activity, witness statements and so on, up until the 5th, specifically the evening of the 5th, when [48] we heard Mr Sollecito’s SI.*

Q: Can you say… at what time you had heard him?
A: The evening around half past ten, ten forty in the evening, 22:30-22:40, also because I remember I was called on the phone, I don’t remember by whom, and he said that he was having dinner because he was given the time to dine and then to come into the Perugia Flying Squad’s offices.

Q: At what time had you completed the statement?
A: The statement, at 3:30-3:40.

Q: Sollecito had asked you to have a lawyer available, to interrupt the statement?
A: Absolutely not.

Q: So you had closed the statement normally, without any worry, and he had not asked anything about all of this?
A: No, everything that he was asking for, water and things, was placed at his complete ease, he had everything at his disposal.

Q: Do you remember how he was behaving?
A: His behaviour was basically confused also because… the statement lasted a while also because of this reason, I repeat, he was placed at complete ease thus with very long pauses, in a manner very, as was relating us, in a very calm manner. In effect he had a basically nervous behaviour.

Q: Once the statement concluded on the basis of his declarations, what did you do?
A: Look, personally finishing with the statement I was asked by my superiors, I was asked along together with the Perugia Flying Squad to look for Mr Lumumba inasmuch the position of Mr Lumumba had emerged from the declarations of Miss Knox. So then when I re-entered the office it was morning, I was [49] made aware of Mr Sollecito’s arrest and I seized a pair of shoes and a knife he had with him.

Q: What knife?
A: A knife…

Q: A flick-knife?
A: I don’t remember if it was a flick-knife, however it was a long enough knife, I don’t remember now the technical particulars of the knife.

Q: He was carrying it?
A: Yes, yes, he was carrying it. He had it in his pocket and in the light of exactly because of this behaviour that he was displaying, even after the interview, I remember that Deputy Inspector Monica Napoleoni had asked him if he were armed or suchlike and he hands us this knife.

Q: Did you ask him for what reason he was carrying it?
A: He was saying that he was a lover of weapons, of knives.

Q: Then what did you do? What do you remember? Did you see Amanda that morning?
A: I saw her after because I personally busied myself with activity concerning Sollecito, I saw her in the morning when she was already in a state of arrest.

Q: Do you remember how she was behaving?
A: She was very confused, very exhausted I believe, but she was worn-out above all about the fact of her declarations, although she didn’t have a relevant behaviour with respect to who knows what.

Q: I have no further questions.

President: The Civil Parties have no questions; the defence?

Defence – Advocate Maori

Q: Advocate Maori, Sollecito Defence. You, Superintendent, said earlier, in response to the Public Prosecutor, that [50] you had effected the seizure of the knife and the shoes.
A: Yes.

Q: For what reasons were the shoes seized? Was there something about these shoes were leading you back to the crime? Were they bloodstained, was there some other element?
A: They were absolutely not bloodstained, although the shoes were seized in that they were seen, in a position that Sollecito assumed, seated with his legs crossed, in a quite natural position, and concentric circles were noticed on the soles of his shoes which, at the investigative level, could have led somewhere. In the evidence the Scientific Police had recovered a print with these concentric circles, so they were seized for this reason.

Q: At what time were these shoes seized?
A: In the morning.

Q: Superintendent, you on the 7th November participated in the seizure of Meredith’s computer and of the clothing that was found in the washing machine?
A: Yes, of the clothing that was in the washing machine.

Q: On that occasion was a search also done or only…
A: No, no, I on instruction went to the bathroom, the first bathroom on the right of the house, always wearing gloves and shoe-covers, I went there and took the clothing indicated by Ms Filomena Romanelli, inside the washing machine and I brought them to the office.

Q: Can you describe the course of events, who were you with and what you did?
A: I entered into the house, I put on the gloves and the shoe-covers…

Q: First of all you had removed the seals?
A: I didn’t remove them personally, with me there was Deputy Commissioner Profazio and Deputy Commissioner Giobbi.

Q: So there were three of you?
A: There were four of us, if I’m not mistaken, there was also Superintendent Gentili from my office.

Q: Go on.
A: We entered, I went to the first bathroom on the right with gloves and shoe-covers on, we opened the washing machine, I picked up the clothing with my gloves, put them inside a bag and we took them to the Flying Squad offices.

Q: You said “I went and we opened”, you mean ‘we went’?
A: I and Superintendent Gentili went into the bathroom.

Q: And these clothes, where were they put?
A: In a bag, a big bag.

Q: And this bag, where was it taken from?
A: The bag?

Q: This bag, where did it come from?
A: From the Flying Squad offices.

Q: What type of bag was it?
A: A black bag, so that then the clothing amongst other things had been centrifuged and washed, so we put all precautions in place. Then I remember that in the Flying Squad offices they were subdivided according to whether Miss Romanelli recognised them as hers or as belonging to the victim or other occupants of the house.

Q: This black bag is a rubbish bag so to speak?
A: Yes, like a rubbish bag.

Q: That you had found…
A: No.

Q: You had gone into the murder house carrying this bag with you?
A: We’d had the bag.

Q: That you found where?
[52] A: In the Flying Squad offices.

Q: In a drawer? There was a bag ready for this type of operation or else you had found it there and had thought that…
A: No, we didn’t find it there, it was a bag that had never been used, like everything else that was supplied, and where the clothing centrifuged and washed in the washing machine was put.

Q: You, before that date, the 7th of November, had never entered into Via della Pergola?
A: No. no.

Q: You were present at the execution of the provisional arrest warrant naturally?
A: Yes.

Q: Was this record signed by 36 members of the Perugia Police?
A: Yes.

Q: Was everyone present?
A: Yes. How were we all present, Counsel?

Q: Everyone belonging to the Perugia Police, from the Deputy Commissioner right down to the Assistant, so there were 36 people who signed the detention record, were they all present?
A: I didn’t count them, but definitely everyone was present, not that I set myself the task of counting if there were 36 people.

Q: Also because they couldn’t all fit in the room. Thank you.

Defence – Advocate Bongiorno

Q: Raffaele Sollecito, when was he arrested?
A: The morning of the 6th of November, at 8, I believe, the Public Prosecutor disposed the arrest and then the following noon I believe that he was notified.

Q: From the moment in which the statement was concluded to the moment in which he was arrested, were other [53] investigative activities carried out?
A: Counsel, as regards myself I have already explained to the Court, I, once the statement was concluded, was asked to look for the other suspect.

Q: While however…
A: Therefore physically I was not there.

Q: Then I will ask you questions about when you were present. When you were present, did it happen that amongst you police officers you were exchanging information about what was happening in the room in which Knox was being heard and about what was happening in the room in which Sollecito was being heard?
A: Personally no.

Q: Without the “personally”, I was saying, did it happen that anyone said something, exchanging information from one room to another?
A: Well, maybe when Miss Knox made her final declarations I don’t remember if someone came out of the room, for this I’m saying personally because I’m speaking for myself.

Q: No, in fact I am asking if these two records were made in such a way that people were shut in in two rooms or whether there was an exchange of information amongst you, someone was saying: “it’s going like this with Sollecito, is it going like that with Knox”?
A: There will also have been, but no…

Q: If you know, tell me yes, if not no.
President: If you recall with precision.
A: With precision, no, I don’t recall.

Defence – Bongiorno: Do you remember if someone said: “contradictions are starting to emerge”?
A: With respect to what, sorry?

Q: These declarations that were being made.
A: No, I don’t recall, I don’t think so.

[54] Q: Not if you recall, not… what do you mean?
A: I mean that I don’t recall in that I was focussed on the activity I was carrying out at the moment.

Q: The activity that you were carrying out was taking the Sollecito SI, it wasn’t extraneous to the activity if someone was saying: “there’s a contrast with what’s happening in the other room”, that’s why I’m asking you it.
A: I don’t recall.

President: You don’t recall if during this activity that you were carrying out with regard to Raffaele Sollecito someone came and said, “but they’re..”?
A: I remember towards the end, when there were the declarations of Ms Knox, someone came but didn’t tell me this thing because I continued to take the Sollecito SI.

Q: But you heard them?
A: No, I didn’t hear them because in the room we were only…

Defence – Bongiorno: I haven’t understood well here then, this person comes in, says this thing and who does he say it to?
A: No, nobody came in, if anything someone went out, Counsel. Maybe Deputy Inspector Napoleoni had gone out, I don’t remember now.

Q: In the ambit of the whole statement by Sollecito, were contested questions put to Sollecito?
A: Contested in what sense?

Q: Of incongruities, of something that didn’t add up.
A: No, but it was him who was telling us…

Q: Were contested questions put or not?
A: No.

Q: Was it said: “Look, this isn’t so”?
[55] A: No, “Look, this isn’t so” was never said, absolutely. It was him who was saying to us: “No, I made a mistake, I said this, I said it another way”.

Q: When he said something like that during the statement, you considered interrupting the statement?
A: No, no, never.

Q: There was no grounds to call a lawyer?
A: There was at that moment no ground to call a lawyer.

Q: When and of what did the details against Sollecito occur?
A: The details against Sollecito had been produced by the totality of the investigative activity, it’s not that they emerged only from the SI statement, it’s true that the SI statement was opened and closed according to procedure.

Q: No, in fact that it was opened and closed normally is patently clear. I was asking you because in the course of the statement you were not interrupted, seeing that you then made the arrest.
A: Because evidently at that moment at the closure of the statement no elements had emerged to be able to communicate…

President: He has already answered this.

Defence – Bongiorno: OK.

Defence – Advocate Dalla Vedova

Q: I wanted to ask when you had arrived at Via della Pergola, had you noticed the front door of the house?
A: On the 2nd November, you mean?

Q: Yes.
A: No, I didn’t notice, we met there outside [56] with the Public Prosecutor and with officers and colleagues from the Flying Squad, there was a brief meeting, I then was asked straight afterwards to the Flying Squad office, I didn’t remain there onsite and I didn’t notice it.

Q: Afterwards you said you went to Port Saint George?
A: Yes, to Port Saint George the day after.

Q: Can you expand a bit more on this investigation?
A: That is? On the activity at Port Saint George?

Q: Yes, what investigative activity was carried out?
A: We went to verify the alibis that had been given during the witness information given by the neighbours of the house below who were saying that they were present that evening, the night of the homicide, in Port Saint George, and these alibis were checked against other witnesses.

Q: So you had verified the alibis of the boys who were living underneath?
A: Yes.

Q: By means of investigative activity always to do with witnesses?
A: Always with witnesses, statements of SI.

Q: Checks of phone logs?
A: No, I personally had not carried out activity on logs.

Q: Do you know if activity of this sort had been carried out in regard to the boys?
A: Everyone there had their different tasks, I was doing mine considering that there were two officers, among which one from the Central Operations Service, one from the Flying Squad, other colleagues.

Q: Who was it who was coordinating the investigations at that moment?
A: The investigations were being coordinated by the officers, by Deputy Commissioner Adjunct Profazio, by Deputy Commissioner [57] Giobbi and by Deputy Commissioner Adjunct Chiacchiera, the officers logically with the Public Prosecutor.

Q: Are you aware whether examinations of the phone logs of the boys from the floor below had been carried out?
A: Counsel, you’re asking me the same question.

Q: No, the question is whether you are aware if they had been carried out.
A: No, I am not aware.

President: You have already responded, you did not carry them out.
A: No I didn’t carry them out.
President: Though Counsel was asking if to your knowledge…

Defence – Dalla Vedova: I had asked if anyone else had done them.
A: I am not aware of that, I limited myself only to the tasks that were given to me.

Q: Obviously the investigation at Port Saint George, what had you confirmed regarding the alibis of these boys?
A: That the boys were present during the night, between the 1st and the 2nd, at Port Saint George.

Q: Can you be more precise? What had been the element that had guaranteed this presence to you?
A: Witness information and investigative activity.

President: Witness information is one thing, investigative activity is the same thing or something else?
A: No, witness information in the sense that there were, once persons totally extraneous to the matter had been heard, they confirmed the presence of the boys at Port…

Q: So this investigation?
A: Yes, the investigative activity I had led to [58] this logically, to this type of activity.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: For this activity, you made a statement, it’s in the papers?
A: There are the SI statements.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Mignini: The statements of the boys’ declarations, how come they’re not there?
President: No, sorry, Counsel was asking about the SIs of the people who would have confirmed…

Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: These are also in the papers.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: I take notice that the Public Prosecutor says that they are in the papers. I wanted to ask instead a clarification on the evening of the 5th, you have said that at around 3:30 of the 6th the examination of Sollecito had by then been interrupted and you carried out other investigative activity.

A: No, I did not interrupt the Sollecito activity, once the statement was closed I was then sent off, at the disposition of my superiors.

Q: I was interested in the activity immediately afterwards, what did you do as investigative activity?
A: I am telling you, Counsel.

Q: I ask you to answer.
A: Yes, we had gone in search of the other personage who had emerged from the declarations.

Q: The other personage is Patrick Lumumba?
A: Yes.

Q: Exactly what activity had you performed?
A: We looked for him with colleagues from Perugia, [59] we gave support to our colleagues from Perugia.

Q: And you found him?
A: Yes, we found him.

Q: Around what time?
A: I don’t remember exactly, but there had passed…

President: How much time later? How long did it take you?
A: A bit of time had passed, definitely two hours, a good two and a half hours.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: So from half past three, about two and a half hours later you had found Patrick Lumumba?
A: At home.

Defence – Bongiorno: Excuse me, Mr President excuse me, I’m loathe to interrupt, but unfortunately it’s happening in court, and it’s not the first time, that prompts are coming from there in back, to the witness, honestly I don’t like this!

President: Excuse me…

Defence – Dalla Vedova: I had not noticed and I find it very grave!

President: We must however grasp the opportunity to invite, truly I was looking at the witness…

Defence – Bongiorno: Also because I ask them then if there is the possibility they will be reheard?

President: All the parties, all the individuals… let’s give a general indication that can always be…

Defence – Dalla Vedova: Maybe, Mr President, for practical [60] purposes, if we could move the stand and the seat on the other side so the witness …

President: Excuse me, everyone is asked to avoid any comment, either by voice or by gesture, in dealings with the witness, who must remain absolutely immunized against any input that could come from outside, it is said now but remains always valid, for the whole debate. If maybe there are these perplexities, the witness and also subsequent witnesses will be invited to look only at the Court.

A: Mr President, I only respectfully look at you.
President: In fact, I am continually looking at the witness, although if the parties have noticed something that might have escaped the one now speaking.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: We can change the position of the witness.
President: Yes, we can change the position of the witness, if you turn yourself with your chair and the parties are likewise asked, independent of the positioning…

Defence – Bongiorno: I wasn’t meaning the Public Prosecutor.

President: No, but everyone is the same.

Civil party – Advocate Pacelli: Then let Counsellor Bongiorno tell who it is.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: (incomprehensible – overlap of voices)

Defence – Dalla Vedova: Seeing that Napoleoni has been named, it seems to me very possible that [61] it’s a visual intersection.

President: Excuse me, let’s avoid any more and let’s stay on only what is necessary. We may proceed, look at me all the time, the parties will not care if while they speak they are not being looked at, you will continue to look towards here.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: So Superintendent Moscatelli, I would like to return to my questions. I would like to better understand, specifically the moment after half past three, you had gone searching for Patrick Lumumba and you had found him.
A: Yes.

Q: Exactly where did you find him?
A: Inside his house.

Q: What was he doing?
A: I believe he was sleeping because he was wearing…

Q: Pyjamas?
A: No, I don’t remember if he was in pyjamas or not, however he was definitely in clothes that were not for early evening.

Q: Who else was there in the house with him that morning?
A: There was the wife and the little girl [sic].

Q: You had carried out investigative examinations on Patrick Lumumba before turning up at his house, on his phone or other types of examination?
A: Personally no.

Q: Do you know if anyone else had done this type of examination?
President: Counsel is asking, other examinations, then if you know whether they were carried out…
A: I believe that someone had done them.

President: What type of other examinations had been done?
A: I believe examinations on the phone number or something [62] of the sort, although, Mr President, in an investigation as complex as this it’s very divided up, so I can answer with precision only on what I did.

Q: Superintendent Moscatelli, who else was present with you in the moment in which you had turned up at Patrick Lumumba’s house?
A: There were present with me, I recall, my office colleagues, but there were present other colleagues from the Perugia Flying Squad, but don’t ask me their names because I don’t remember.

Q: What happened afterwards? You took Patrick Lumumba and what happened next? From his house, where did you go?
A: To the Flying Squad offices.

Q: And you then notified his arrest?
A: No, the arrest was notified much later, there was the Public Prosecutor on site, so all the activity was then coordinated and decided by the Public Prosecutor.

Q: We are speaking of the morning of the 6th?
A: Yes, the morning of the 6th.

Q: You were present at the arrest of Amanda Knox?
A: At the arrest…

Q: At the notification of the arrest?
A: At the notification of the arrest, I had signed the arrest in a room, we were all these people, so I was present at the notification because I was there in the Flying Squad office.

Q: Do you remember at what time? Vaguely, if you recall?
President: You may consult the documents, the record, seeing as you participated in it.
A: I ask if I may consult the documents.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: The record was at midday, it had [63] been made at midday…
A: Before midday.

Q: This is a question still in relation to Patrick Lumumba; did you give him reasons when you had planned to take him away from the house?
A: No, no, absolutely.

Q: What type of reaction did he have?
A: Normal.

Q: Normal for a person who has been arrested?
A: Normal for a person who has been arrested… that is, normal in that he wasn’t happy.

President: He was sleeping you were saying.
A: No, he opened the door and logically it could be seen that he had been sleeping, then he was told that he had to follow us to the police station, he dressed and came with us to the police station.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: In conclusion, what was the piece of evidence that led you to Lumumba’s house and to look for Lumumba based on what you had, and if there were more than one, what were they?
A: Definitely the declarations of Ms Knox.

Q: And then?
A: That in sum, then I don’t know if there had been…

President: If you know, Counsel is asking, if you know whether there were also other elements.
A: As regards myself, I attended to the instructions received and to the fact that Miss Knox had supplied elements useful to the identification of Lumumba.

[64] Defence – Dalla Vedova: And this element, had it been mentioned to Lumumba immediately after when you had arrested him?
A: Me, no. I had not mentioned it to him.

Q: Do you remember if someone had mentioned it to him?
A: I don’t remember, Counsel.

Q: None of your colleagues, you don’t remember anyone of the persons present?
A: I don’t know, Counsel, I as regards… I no, but I repeat I can only answer for the action I effected myself.

Q: So you don’t remember if anyone put it to him?
A: No, I don’t remember because there were various people, surely there was…

Q: In your experience, when an arrest is made, is formal notice given to them?

Intervention: Objection, Mr President! Let him ask questions on the facts!

President: Excuse me, please… Let’s allow the question to be put.

Public Prosecutor – Dr Comodi: Not with mistaken assumptions!

Defence – Dalla Vedova: No, there are no mistaken assumptions!

President: Please, Counsel.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: There’s a willingness to answer in a very vague manner so I am constrained to investigate, it’s clear that everything is in the documents, but the [65] question was precise, it seems strange to me that a person is arrested without anyone telling him the reason why.

Intervention: He answered!

Defence – Dalla Vedova: Seeing that I asked the witness if this information had been brought to the attention of the arrestee.

President: Don’t speak all at the same time but let’s also avoid using opinions, “it seems strange to me”, edit out this “strange”, we’re asking questions plain and simple.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: Well, the question was if he remembered if anyone had put the reason to him for which they had gone to arrest him.
A: The answer is: I didn’t do it, someone must have done it, surely.

Defence – Dalla Vedova: No other questions.

President

Q: I wanted to ask you, at a certain point you in your answers had said that Raffaele Sollecito’s shoes were removed from him.
A: Yes.

Q: I ask you, the shoes he was wearing?
A: Certainly.

Q: So he remained… how did he remain? Were other shoes placed at his disposal? Did he remain shoeless?
A: Immediately afterwards he was shoeless, but I believe that then shoes were given to him.

Q: Do you know that shoes were given to him at what time, for how long did he remain without?
A: If he remained without he remained without for a short while because amongst other [66] things the seizure was done in the morning, then he was accompanied for the successive acts and so if he remained shoeless he remained shoeless for a short while.

Q: Short means?
A: The time then needed to go and get a pair of shoes.

Q: You questioned Sollecito alone or was there someone else with you?
A: No, no, there were other colleagues present, my superiors and Saturday crew.

Q: It’s in the relevant record?
A: Certainly, it’s in the relevant record.

Q: OK.

Defence – Bongiorno: Superintendent, so you took your own shoes, some external shoes or in any case you had waited for a search at Sollecito’s house and then had given him his shoes taken from his house?
A: No, not so, I didn’t wait for any search, I went back to seizing his shoes.

Q: Pardon me, I didn’t explain myself clearly. You had removed Sollecito’s shoes, so he was there without shoes, the President had asked “did you procure other shoes, did you wait, what did you do?” and you said “I believe, I don’t know how long afterwards, however we procured other shoes for him”.
A: Yes.

Q: I ask you, these other shoes, you found them because they were in the police station, you bought them etc, or in reality he remained shoeless until the search at his house had completed?
A: This I don’t remember.

Q: Thank you.

[67] President

Q: You are aware of the seizure of the knife that was effected, that is of the two knives, in the house that Raffaele Sollecito was living in in Perugia in early November. If you know, on that occasion Raffaele Sollecito accompanied the officers who went to effect it, the officers being Dr Chiacchiera and Finzia?
A: I don’t know, Mr President.

Q: Very well, you may go.

The hearing was adjourned.

*************

SIs are ‘summary informations’, part of the logistical paperwork of a criminal investigation and regulated by the criminal procedure code. My First Dictionary of Legal Matters says: “To acquire intelligence useful to the investigation, members of the investigative taskforce [the polizia giudiziaria] are able to collect summary informations from the suspect (Article 350 CPC) or from other persons (Article 351 CPC).” — il mio Primo Dizionario delle Materie Giuridiche, (2008) [Simone, 2008], p 546. ISBN 9788824469760. The Code provides strict regulation about how, when and where such information can be used, against whom and in which venue, and for what purposes and consequences.

Posted on 03/13/09 at 10:08 AM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
Right-column links: The officially involvedPolice and CSIEvidence & witnessesOther witnessesTrials 2008 & 2009
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Amanda Knox’s Controversial Stepfather Arrives In Perugia To Help Out

Posted by Peter Quennell



[click for larger image]

Very much anticipated. Chris Mellas (center above) has something of a reputation on the internet for sharp elbows.

It sure will be interesting to watch all the Knox and Mellas body-language here - and to hear all the questions intrepid reporters put to him. Knox seemed to imply in her diary that she may have hated the guy. Rumors around Seattle seem to suggest at least something at home was seriously not right.

A few days ago in this comment, Skeptical Bystander offered this take on Chris Mellas.

Perhaps you should go at him, reporters? He may prove a real gold-mine - and don’t let him spin you! Most especially not you, Peter Popham.

Posted on 03/13/09 at 01:57 AM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
Right-column links: The officially involvedThe wider contextsPerugia contextSeattle contextAmanda KnoxKnox-Mellas team
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Thursday, March 12, 2009

Trial: The Process Resumes: The Court Agenda For Friday And Saturday

Posted by Nicki


Days 8 and 9 of the trial. Only the bare bones of what will be discussed has been made public.

First, the police who first arrived at the crime scene will testify further. Then the crime scene investigators who collected all the evidence at the crime scene will testify further. And next, the interpreter called upon by the police to assist in the interrogation of Knox will be heard.

And on Saturday morning, Sollecito’s seized notebook computer will be the subject of interest, with the investigations on it carried out by the police being described. We have already heard that it seems to have been dormant, not downloading a movie, until the early hours of the morning.

Did Sollecito start his new day by googling “bleach” and “blood” as has been conjectured? Perhaps we are about to find out. 

On the details of what to expect, the prosecutors are playing their cards typically close to their chests.  Contrary to the myths apparently first propagated in Seattle, Prosecutor Mignini is not renowned among journalists for leaking his case in advance.

In fact, he is rather famous among journalists for being a hard interview to nail down. So it’s still a wait and see mode for trial watchers in in Italy, the UK, the US, and 100-plus other countries that are fascinated by the trial. 

Our usual highlighting of developments will follow.

Posted on 03/12/09 at 09:06 PM by NickiClick here & then top left for all my posts;
Right-column links: The officially involvedThe prosecutorsEvidence & witnessesOther physicalTrials 2008 & 2009
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Monday, March 09, 2009

Guede’s Grounds For Appeal Sound None Too Convincing

Posted by Peter Quennell


Click above for La Nazione’s report in Italian. Nick Pisa of the Daily Mail filed this report in English.

In lodging the appeal against his conviction and sentence (mandatory in Italy) his lawyers have offered no new exculpatory evidence.

Just claims that the other two did it, that an argument over Meredith’s stolen money was the motive, and that he was in the bathroom at the time.

Guede’s DNA was of course found right there at the scene of the crime, in Meredith’s room, and on Meredith’s body.

Considered in the context of the awesome detail of Judge Micheli’s report the grounds for his appeal sound almost laughable.

This is all being taken by some of the court analysts that Guede has nothing to bargain with that the prosecutors don’t already know.

And that they have great confidence in the strength of their case against Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox.

Enjoy your 30 years in the slammer, Rudy Guede. You might even have saved Meredith’s life by calling for some help.

And you didn’t. It appears, in fact, that you chose not to.

Posted on 03/09/09 at 11:00 PM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
Right-column links: Trials 2008 & 2009Guede appeals
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Saturday, March 07, 2009

Meredith’s Perugia #6: Scenes Around Her Fine Old University

Posted by Peter Quennell

Click the small rectangle at lower right here for a full-screen version - recommended.

The School for Foreigners shows up early in this video, and the old Roman viaduct directly behind and below.

Founded as an institution separate from the University of Perugia (it was one man’s post-war vision) the School was assimilated into it for administrative reasons back in the 1990s

Meredith was enrolled in the School for Foreigners for her advanced Italian classes, and in the Department of Politics for her study of European politics. Both in the old city.

Knox was enrolled only at the School for Foreigners - she seemed to be intending an easy few months. Sollecito lived in the old city, at its extreme north-west tip, but his Department of Computer Sciences is down in the newer part of Perugia, perhaps two kilometers further west.

We believe Meredith had good French and some German as well. She would have traveled easily around Europe and probably become a true international citizen.

Previous Perugia series in tribute to Meredith. Previous Leeds University scenes. and below, a first video.

Posted on 03/07/09 at 10:06 AM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
Right-column links: Concerning MeredithHer Perugia
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Friday, March 06, 2009

Patrick Lumumba Seeks Damages For His Time In The Big House

Posted by Peter Quennell


Click above for the story.

Knox is being tried on a charge of calunnia for her false implication of Patrick (see an explanation of calunnia at bottom). Patrick was of course the owner of the Le Chic bar, now closed because of the heap of trouble that his former waitress Amanda Knox dropped on his head.

He was held in Capanne Prison for about two weeks as a suspect, after she alleged (voluntarily, in writing) that she had seen him in the house on the night of the crime. And heard Meredith’s screams as he committed the murder.

Might he perhaps not have been so ticked if she had recanted the accusation any time in the next two weeks? Maybe. Maybe not. But Knox might easily have done. Nobody was pressuring her to do otherwise.

This seems an open-and-shut case. The evidence is all there. So Knox lives and learns. We hope.

Explanation of calunnia

The charge of calunnia (art. 368) has been commonly translated as “slander” in the English/US media. This translation is incorrect, however, as calunnia is a crime with no direct equivalent in the respective legal systems.

The equivalent of “criminal slander” is diffamazione, which is an attack on someone‟s reputation. Calunnia is the crime of making false criminal accusations against someone whom the accuser knows to be innocent, or to simulate/fabricate false evidence, independently of the credibility/admissibility of the accusation or evidence.

The charges of calunnia and diffamazione are subject to very different jurisprudence. Diffamazione is public and explicit, and is a more minor offence, usually resulting in a fine and only prosecuted if the victim files a complaint, while calunnia can be secret or known only to the authorities. It may consist only of the simulation of clues, and is automatically prosecuted by the judiciary.

The crimes of calunnia and diffamazione are located in different sections of the criminal code: while diffamazione is in the chapter entitled “crimes against honour” in the section of the Code protecting personal liberties, calunnia is discussed in the chapter entitled “crimes against the administration of justice”, in a section that protects public powers.


Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Powerpoints #11: Countering The Spin By The Defenses On The Recent Cottage Break-in

Posted by Kermit





Click here if you have Powerpoint or the Powerpoint Viewer program loaded. If not here is the Viewer download.

TJMK is getting a reputation for cool, precise, painstaking, and illuminating examination of the evidence made available.  We have frequently wanned others not to jump the gun or to mischaracterize known evidence when so very much of it is not yet in the open.

Just over two weeks ago, on 18 February, the Italian police discovered that in recent days intruders had broken their way into the girls’ apartment in the house on Via della Pergola.  The intruders had entered through the kitchen window to the north, opening onto the balcony.

This strange happening sparked many concerned questions, especially in Italy. For example, was the break-in perhaps related to the crime of 1 November 2007 and the trial now underway?

Nobody knows as yet. Police investigations continue. But it is just possible that it WAS related to the case. And if it was, there seem to be several possibilities as to why:

1) Proof of easy access for burglars?

The break-in could have been a demonstration of how a thief could very easily make his way into the cottage, similar to the notional “lone wolf” attacker that Raffaele Sollecito’s lawyer Ms Bongiorno has been promoting as the real perpetrator of the crime.

2) Proof of contamination of DNA evidence?

If an undetected thief could have entered the cottage between 2 November 2007 and the date when the bra clasp with Raffaele’s DNA was collected in mid-December, that could be an explanation for the unlikely DNA contamination which the defence teams claim might have occurred.

3) Modification or removal of remaining evidence?

The break-in could have taken place with the object of modifying or removing some remaining evidence which the police have not yet collected, evidence which may soon become significant for example in the course of a confession by one of the defendants or Rudy Guede..

4) A threat or message to the police?

The fact that during the break-in some knives in the cottage were arranged in a suggestive manner, and one was placed on a police envelope (apparently brought in by the intruders and unrelated to the previous evidence gathering) might point towards the intruders making some threat to the police, or trying to send some message to them.  This possibility becomes a bit more significant when one considers that the break-in occurred just before the resumption of the trial, when the 12 police investigators who were involved in the crime-scene investigation were all just about to give their testimonies before the court.

5) Unrelated possibilities to explain the break-in?

Perhaps it really was some sort of satanic rite. Or a prank or a hoax. Or it might simply have been some itinerants getting in to spend a night out of the extreme cold.

Defense spin has been attempted along most of these lines, to suggest that the prosecutors and crime scene investigators really did botch the investigation.

The most outlandish of all claims was in the blog section of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. That, because the perpetrators of this break-in quite easily got in through the KITCHEN window it proves they easily could have got in through a BEDROOM window. And this despite the facts that:

These Powerpoints here set out to demonstrate that there is no possible parallel between this THEORETICAL break-in through Filomena’s bedroom and the ACTUAL break-in through the kitchen window.


Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Cartwheels Or No Cartwheels? You Be The Judge

Posted by Peter Quennell



[above: examples of cartwheels, not by Amanda Knox]

The ever-careful and supremely objective Steve Shay has another scoop!

This below is Mr Shay’s report to gullible Seattleites (if there are any left) in the, ah, very well-edited West Seattle Herald:

“Amanda accompanied Raffaele to the station where he was then interrogated by Monica Napoleani, the Perugia chief of homicide. Amanda was there to support him, as he had supported her before, when she was interrogated,” said Chris Mellas. Chris Mellas is the husband of Edda Mellas, Amanda’s mother. Both live in West Seattle.

“She was actually sitting alone in a separate room waiting for her boyfriend, and Napoleani said in court Friday (Feb. 27) that when she went to get some water she walked by the room where Amanda was and saw Amanda ‘doing the splits.’ She said she thought this was ‘odd behavior,’ and that Amanda should have instead appeared to be mourning the loss of Meredith.

The tabloid press further sensationalized her statement by changing ‘the splits’ to ‘cartwheels,’ and the mainstream press ran with that. ”

“Amanda does yoga to calm herself down and relieve stress, and she told her father and me that’s why she was doing the splits. Also, in those four days she was in mourning over Meredith, which followed her outrage. Six hours after the discovery (of the body) she was like, ‘Let’s find the bastard who killed her.’”

Meanwhile, back here in the real world….  This was the actual report from the BBC News:

Meredith Kercher murder suspect Amanda Knox “turned cartwheels” in the police station after the killing, a police witness told a court in Perugia, Italy.

Former flying squad chief Domenico Profazio said he had to tell Ms Knox and her boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito their behaviour was “not appropriate”.

From Seattle’s own Post-Intelligencer

They were always together, Napoleoni said, and did not want to be separated. While police questioned Sollecito, Knox waited in a side room where policewoman Lorena Zugarini, also present at Knox’s questioning, said she saw Knox doing a cartwheel and the splits. Zugarini said she told Knox it was “not the right place” for such activities.

From the UK’s Sky News:

Ms Napoleone also described Knox’s unusual behaviour at the police station where she had been taken for questioning. She said: “She had complained that she was feeling tired and at that stage I told her that she could go if she wanted.” “She said she wanted to stay, Sollecito was also at the station at the time and she said she wanted to wait for him.

“A few minutes later I walked past a room at the police station where she was waiting and I saw Amanda doing the splits and a cartwheel. It was around 11am on November 5th.

From the UK’s Daily Express:

The exchange came as Inspector Ficarra, of the city’s Flying Squad, described 21-year-old Knox’s bizarre behaviour after her arrest following the killing in 2007.

“I was in the elevator and when I got to the floor where the Flying Squad department is the door opened and I saw Amanda doing floor exercises,” he said.

She was doing the splits, cartwheels and arching herself backwards, pressing her hands on the floor. I said to her, ‘What on earth are you doing? Is this the right way to behave?’

From the UK’s Independent:

Chief Inspector Monica Napoleoni told the court where the pair are on trial for murder how, at the police station as they waited to be first questioned, Mr Sollecito and Ms Knox “appeared completely indifferent to everything, lying down, kissing, pulling faces and writing each other notes. They were talking to each in low voices the whole time – it was impossible that they were behaving like this when there was a dead body in their house. It seemed strange to everybody”. Ms Knox had also “turned cartwheels and done the splits,” she said.

From the UK’s Daily Telegraph:

Ms Napoleoni recalled thinking that Miss Knox and her boyfriend seemed “indifferent to everything” when they were called to a police station in Perugia for questioning on Nov 5, 2007. It was there that the American turned cartwheels and did the splits.

And the last word, as always, from the London Times:

Ms Napoleoni said she and other officers had seen Ms Knox “doing cartwheels and the splits” while Mr Sollecito was being questioned and she was waiting her turn. Ms Napoleoni said she found this “very strange”. She said Ms Knox and Mr Sollecito “had a bizarre attitude throughout - they were laughing, kissing and pulling faces at each other.

Pehaps Chris Mellas and Steve Shay and Ken Robinson of the West Seattle Herald should discover the tubes of the internet.


Saturday, February 28, 2009

Trial: Wrap-Up On The Testimony For This Week From Officers Who Questioned Knox

Posted by Nicki




1.Monica Napoleoni

Today’s hearing resumed with the deposition of Ms Monica Napoleoni, the head of Perugia’s homicide squad, which had been halted yesterday.

Some of her statements were extremely touching and sad. For example, she reported on the text messages that were found on Meredith’s phone from her parents who, having heard on the news broadcasts that a British student had been murdered in Perugia, wanted to make sure that their daughter was fine. [A heartfelt comment on this by reader TT on the post below this one]

Ms Napoleoni also described what she saw when she entered the murder room and leaned over Meredith’s lifeless body. She reported that Meredith body had been cut about so ferociously that it was very hard for her to even look at the wounds.

Ms Napoleoni also talked about a female shoe print that was found next to the pillow near Meredith’s body, a footprint of a size compatible with Knox’s.

During cross-examination, Sollecito’s defense showed Ms Napoleoni pictures of the cottage rooms taken while the search by the Flying Squad and Scientific Police was taking place. She pointed out that shoe covers and gloves were always being worn by everybody present.

In one instance on December18th when the bra clasp was found and sequestered “whole overalls were used by everyone, since the scientific police were at work”.

Ms Monica Napoleoni confirmed the impartial handling of Knox on the night of 5-6 November which she briefly witnessed, and also confirmed that she witnessed “Knox‘s gymnast show” and improper behaviour of the couple during the course of investigating such a tragic event.

2. Rita Ficarra

Ms Rita Ficarra, the officer in charge of the Perugia Flying Squad, reported about the night between November 5 and 6, when the two defendants were interrogated and later arrested in the wee hours of November 6th.

Knox turned up at the police station, although she hadn’t been asked to, “because Sollecito had been requested to be interviewed and she was accompanying him” Ms Ficarra said.

She was not required to stay, and could have gone home any time.

“I encountered her in the waiting room doing splits, cartwheels and bridges. She was showing off her gymnastic capabilities”. Ms Ficarra added that she reproached Amanda, and asked her to quit her inapt behaviour, as in addition to her gymnast show, Knox kept French-kissing, stroking and hugging Sollecito.

Ms Ficarra felt that was very inappropriate behaviour to be going on in a police station while waiting to be heard concerning a gruesome murder.  “Everybody else was terrified” Ms Ficarra said “except for Amanda and Raffaele, who seemed indifferent, were smirking, and kept on French kissing.”

Ms Ficarra then described Knox’s interrogation and the false accusations against Patrick Lumumba.

Ms Ficarra testified that when Knox was asked about Mr Lumumba‘s text message to her on the night from his bar, “she started crying and wrapping her hands around her head, she started shaking it, and then she said: it was him…Patrick killed her”.

At this point, Ms Ficarra said “I stopped the interrogation and informed the judicial authorities”. Ms Ficarra stressed that “Amanda was never mistreated” and that “she had a chance to rest, go the bathroom, and eat”.  She insisted on writing out and signing statements both then and after being warned of her rights. She declined to have a lawyer present. 

Ms Ficarra’s deposition continued: “After Knox was notified of her arrest – in English - she asked for a pen and paper, saying: I’ll give you a present“. Ms Ficarra added “Knox asked me to read what she was going to write before she was taken to jail, because she wanted me to have a clear idea about what had happened”.

Ms Ficarra maintained that “Knox was never subjected to threats or violence…. she was treated firmly, but with cordiality”.

3. Knox and Sollecito

As Andrea Vogt reported, Knox and Sollecito both made impromptu declarations during today’s trial session.

Knox made a very brief statement in Italian, claiming “They did offer me drinks and food, but they started treating me as a person only after I made those declarations”. She did not elaborate any further.

Sollecito’s declaration took more time. He claimed that during his interrogation on the evening of November 5, he asked to make a phone call to his father but was denied it. He then asked for permission to call a lawyer, but he was not allowed to do so. He did not report any mistreatment or any physical or psychological abuse from the police.

4. A comment on this.

It should be noted that when Sollecito asked for a lawyer’s assistance, he had not yet even become a suspect. His status was still that of a “person knowledgeable about the facts” who is not legally entitled to insist on a lawyer being present. 

Not an actual suspect. Simply a person who could possibly yield useful information to the investigators. So why would someone who is being heard as a “helper” be so concerned about getting a lawyer? If he really had nothing to hide?

The next trial dates are March 13 and 14, 20 and 21, and 27 and 28.


Trial: Nick Pisa Of On-The-Ball Sky News Reports On Saturday Morning

Posted by Peter Quennell

Posted on 02/28/09 at 09:50 AM by Peter QuennellClick here & then top left for all my posts;
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