Monday, October 27, 2008

Sollecito Team Turns Sharply Against Knox? This Is Extraordinary, A Really Big Deal

Posted by Our Main Posters

Breaking News In London Times

A report says Sollecito places Knox at the scene of the crime.

As she had herself as well, twice, in the evening before her arrest. Still, a surprise move coming so soon after this truce.

The report, by Richard Owen from Perugia for the UK Times went online on the Times website three hours ago.

It also confirms what case-watchers already know; that tomorrow, Tuesday, is quite a cliff-hanger for the third defendant, Rudy Guede, who may be convicted and possibly sentenced right there and then.

Amanda Knox, the American flatmate of the murdered British student Meredith Kercher, has for the first time been implicated as being at the scene of the crime by her former Italian boyfriend.

With a verdict imminent in the pre-trial hearings over the murder in Perugia almost a year ago, the three suspects in the case appear to have turned on each other.

After the conclusion of the hearings, Judge Paolo Micheli, 44, a former Carabinieri officer who has been a magistrate since 1990, will decide tomorrow whether Ms Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, her former boyfriend, should stand trial for the murder.

At the same time, he is also due to convict or clear Rudy Guede, the Ivory Coast immigrant who is accused by prosecutors of taking part in the killing, but who has opted for a fast track trial in the hope of a reduced sentence if found guilty.

Lawyers for Mr Sollecito have told the judge that, according to a forensic expert called by the defence, Ms Knox’s DNA is on Ms Kercher’s bloodied bra-strap as well as that of Mr Sollecito and Rudy Guede.

Professor Francesco Vinci, the forensic scientist, said the DNA traces were “too contaminated” to be useable as evidence, but showed the presence of “at least three people”.

The admission appears to support the prosecution case that all three were present at the scene of the crime.

It also breaks a [recent] tacit pact between Ms Knox and Mr Sollecito, who have sent each other supportive letters while in custody and until now have avoided incriminating each other. Mr Sollecito even sent Ms Knox flowers on her birthday this summer.

Lawyers for both Mr Sollecito and Ms Knox have repeatedly claimed the couple spent the night of the murder at Mr Sollecito’s flat, indicating that Mr Guede was the lone killer.

Today, the prosecution and defence lawyers will present their closing arguments. They will argue that if a trial date is set, the suspects should be released from prison into house arrest. Ms Knox has asked to be housed at San Fatucchio, a supervised community and farm in the Umbrian countryside, 40 kilometres from Perugia, for recovering drug addicts and young offenders run by the Catholic charity Caritas.

Last weekend Walter Biscotti, one of Mr Guede’s lawyers, accused Ms Knox and Mr Sollecito of framing his client, a drifter and small-time drug dealer who was brought up in Perugia and mingled with the student community. “We believe Knox and Sollecito were the murderers,” Nicodemo Gentile, another of Mr Guede’s lawyers said.

Mr Biscotti said Mr Guede, the only one of the three who admits he was at the hillside cottage Ms Knox shared with Ms Kercher on the evening of the murder, admitted attempting to have consensual sex with Ms Kercher, but had not raped or killed her. The prosecution says that Mr Guede’s DNA was on Ms Kercher’s bloodstained pillow.

Ms Kercher was found last November semi-naked in her bedroom with her throat cut. The prosecution claims she was assaulted just after Hallo’een in a murderous sex game, possibly inspired by a Japanese comic strip about vampires which Mr Sollecito had been reading.

Prosecutors say that Ms Knox stabbed her flatmate while the other two forced her to her knees and held her down, with Mr Sollecito pinning her by the arms and Mr Guede holding her by the throat.

Ms Knox’s lawyers reject this, saying Ms Kercher was assaulted by “one robust killer”. Last week, Ms Knox burst into tears when the allegation was made in court that she stabbed Ms Kercher, saying: “Meredith was my friend, I had no reason to kill her.”

Mr Guede claims he was listening to his iPod in the bathroom when Ms Kercher was killed in the bedroom. He fled to Germany after the killing, but was tracked down three weeks later in Germany.

Mr Sollecito’s defence team, headed by Giulia Bongiorno, a high profile lawyer and parliamentary deputy, brought props including a shop window mannequin wearing a bra into court last week to back their case. They claim “a thief”, who they suggest was Mr Guede, smashed a window to enter the cottage and killed Ms Kercher when she returned and recognised him, fleeing with her two mobile phones.

Ms Bongiorno argued that the presence of Mr Sollecito’s DNA on the bra fastener but not the rest of the garment proved it was due to contamination and mishandling by police forensic scientists.

Hmmm. Perhaps Rudy Guede should back out of the short-form trial (where the chips are loaded against him but the sentence is guaranteed shorter) and go for the long-form trial instead?

Oh, and better send more flowers, Raffaelle. She is going to be ticked at this one.


Raffaele’s lawyer has certainly dropped a bombshell this morning. I think we can safely assume that Raffaele is no longer providing Amanda with an alibi which gives Amanda a huge problem. She’ll have to explain where she really was on the night of the murder. Will she revert to her second alibi and claim she was in the kitchen, covering her ears while Meredith was screaming, and just replace Diya Lumumba with Rudy?

Amanda has some serious questions to answer. Crying, shaking her head, having a shaking fit and refusing to answer will not be good enough. She has repeatedly lied to the police during the investigation and tellingly refused to cooperate with the police when she was asked questions she didn’t want to answer. She has yet to answer the question of how she knew the details of the crime and crime scene (position of Meredith’s body/seeing Meredith’s body in the mirror/single fatal stab wound to Meredith’s throat/Meredith suffering a slow and agonising death/referring to killers and not a killer) if she wasn’t present and she did not enter Meredith’s room the next day.

Amanda will also have to explain why she lied about being at Raffaele’s apartment that evening and why she embellished her ficitious account with details such as Raffaele cooking fish at 11 pm and him having blood on his hand.

Amanda should explain to the judge why she falsely accused the police of hitting her. Does she think it’s acceptable to make false and malicious accusations of murder and police brutality?

Posted by The Machine on 10/27/08 at 03:20 PM | #

Will she revert to her second alibi and claim she was in the kitchen, covering her ears while Meredith was screaming, and just replace Diya Lumumba with Rudy?

Yeah, it is hard to see a scenario in which she now attempts to drop Sollecito in the soup while extraditing herself.

It seems to me there is another shoe to drop from the Sollecito camp.

They are already attempting to put her there (with a new fact, I believe, her DNA?), and now they presumably have to attempt to put him NOT there.

At least for the actual murder.

Maybe they will now go strongly for the “He was only in at the clean-up” theory? And, if so, a short-form trial?

Guess we are going to hear a lot more about that downloaded cartoon he was watching when his mobile phone rang, asking for a little help down at the house…

Oh, of course, it couldn’t ring. It was turned off.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/27/08 at 04:03 PM | #

Just getting going here “Seattle” time!  Just wanted to say THANK YOU for the up to date reports and commentary on this site.  Extraordinary news indeed!

Posted by Tara on 10/27/08 at 05:38 PM | #

Good morning to you, Tara. (Tara has a piece posted below.)

I’m intrigued to see that our readership jumps around 11:00 pm NYC time. Around 8:00 pm Seattle time.

When we put this site on search-engine steroids, we should be able to boost audience elsewhere to match that.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/27/08 at 05:44 PM | #

Greetings Fast Pete et al…

Very interesting indeed.. no doubt the pro AK camp will say it is good news about the DNA as it shows further proof of contamination…. where the prosecution will say it shows 3 people who committed the crime were there and involved….

I hope that the spplit between 3 legal teams can only be good news for moving towards the real truth and justice for Meredith.

Best regards, LW

Posted by Love Wolf on 10/27/08 at 06:16 PM | #
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