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Amanda Knox's conviction reinstated by appeals court in Italy

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Vash01, Jan 30, 2014.

  1. Kasey

    Kasey Correcting President Trump's grammar on Twitter :)

    I think you mean George Zimmerman. I doubt that John Zimmerman has been on trial for murder...
  2. Mayra

    Mayra Well-Known Member


  3. OliviaPug

    OliviaPug Well-Known Member

    In the U.S., convicted defendants have a right to review by an intermediate appellate court. In capital cases when a death sentence is imposed, there is a direct, automatic appeal and, of course, a stay of execution in the meantime.

    Convicted defendants can ALWAYS request an appeal. Whether or not the appellate court will grant the appeal and/or whether the appeal will be successful is quite another matter, and depends, in large part, on the grounds for appeal.

  4. MacMadame

    MacMadame Cat Lady-in-Training

    True. But lots of smarmy people turn out not to be murderers.

    I'm not. For one thing, the evidence was compromised from the get-go. And there's been a massive case of CYA ever since. I doubt any court in any country could decipher the evidence now.
  5. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    Loulou, I asked my husband, and I will try to explain as best I can. In a criminal case, you are always entitled to an appeal, if you are convicted. You appeal based on weight of evidence against verdict, conviction contrary to evidence, procedural or substantive errors. In the appeal it is decided to either uphold the decision of the lower court or to overturn it. Then the prosecutor decides if he/she will let the new decision stand or will retry the case. However, if the original trial produces a not guilty, there can never be an appeal. That would constitute double jeopardy.
  6. LilJen

    LilJen Reaching out with my hand sensitively

    Death stare of sexiness?? It's entirely possible.
  7. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    I think loulou's confusion stems from hearing that the case could not be appealed when the lower court found Knox not guilty if it had been held in the US.

    The prosecution cannot appeal in the US. The defense can.

    There are exceptions to the double jeopardy rule, too, so that's not entirely cut and dried, either.
  8. *Jen*

    *Jen* Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I bet she's crying all the way to the bank :lol: Recoup is one thing, but she's made a clear fortune from this far beyond the legal fees. If she were the only one accused, that'd be something...but Rafael hasn't made that kind of cash, so once again there is a double standard.

    Nor will your bitterness change whether or not Knox and Sollecito were involved. I'm sorry for what you and your family went through, but I guarantee the Knox and Sollecito families are far better off than the Kerchers, who had their daughter brutally murdered. There's no end for them, ever. Assuming Amanda and Rafael are innocent, the Kerchers are still victims of the justice system as well. They've been let down by a botched investigation and questionable trial just as much as the others have. Where is their justice? At the end of the day, Amanda and Rafael are alive and their families will have more comfort in that than the Kerchers, who will only ever be able to visit their daughter and sister's grave and nothing more.


    Why not? She's an independently wealthy young woman, walking free in her home country, and getting an education. Sounds like she has been getting on with her life. Even if the appeal upholds the convictions, she may never spend another day in prison. She has a life - that puts her in a far better position than Meredith.

    Try to put yourself in their shoes. Since 2007, they've been told that Knox and Sollecito did it. Unless the police admit they were wrong, which they haven't, what have that family got to go on? They've been let down by this as much as anyone else. Their mindset is that they believe what the police and two separate courts have told them, which is that Knox and Sollecito are guilty. If we as bystanders can't be objective, why do you expect the victim's family would be?

    They're not trying to ruin two more lives without reason; they're trying to get justice for their family. Whether or not that sense of justice is misplaced, I don't know, and neither can anyone else posting here.
  9. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    Just how much money has Amanda made, anyway?

    And how is it a double standard that she has made money and Rafael has not?
  10. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Yoohoo!? Legal eagles of FSU??!! :drama:

    I repeat, how do people who think Knox and boyfriend are guilty when their DNA wasn't found at the scene? And that other guy's DNA was all over, IIRC? That seems to be convincing that at least they weren't in the room, but perhaps in the house?

    I also want to see her tragic haircut.

    ETA: found the haircut--it IS tragic. Also, found this old article about facial expression and how people like to interpret what they see as the truth. We here on FSU are particularly fond of doing this, myself included.


    My favorite quote:
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2014
  11. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    Well…not surprising that some people are turning into a European v. American thing. Posters can be so predictable.

    I echo everything Coco has said in this thread. There are way too many cases of human beings saying things they think the interrogator wants to hear under intense interrogations and duress and having those statements shown to be false.
  12. loulou

    loulou Let It Snow

    These two statements don't seem to match to me. Either an appeal is always granted (to the defendant) or it isn't - I understand a defendant can always request.
    In Italy, appeal is always granted. Which is why Knox is free.

    No. And I don't think I was ever confused, but I believe I don't make myself sufficiently clear.
    I was refferring to what OliviaPug says. I thought in the US appeal wouldn't be always granted, and, as far as I know, there was no base in Knox first trial that would have granted her an appeal in the US. Hence, she wouldn't have been free by now.

    Now I'm confused though, I don't know if appeal is always granted to the defendant.

    As far as comments about DNA and messed up evidences/investigations, I think it's hard for us to discuss.
    All we know is filterd, at best, by someone who knows how to. I believe both in the US and in the UK it is also filterd from an angle.

    Convictions can be made on strong circumstantial evidences (in the US too, I remember someone posting here they were on a jury and did it just fine).

    I have a hard time believing they would convict the two of them on strong circustantial evidence, if the scenario wasn't scientifically plausible too.
    Not in this case, there's too much behind those guys for that to happen: media attention, money, important lawyers and such a big country as the US, which is on it full weight.
    In my opinion, they are being careful, and if they can sentence not guilty without breaking work ethics, they will.
    US people always talk about Knox being pressured, but hardly see how the judges are.

    Sollecito's defence made news a few weeks ago: for the first time they asked to the judges to consider Knox and Sollecito seprately, as in not being together that night. It was reported they changed strategy because they had seen that the Supreme Court arguments on Knox initial statements left little to no room to a nice verdict, and hoped to make Sollecito's position less severe. It appears from the sentence it didn't work.

    As I understand it, but again, I don't think it's for us to understand, they are being convicted on strong circustantial evidences, which come mainly from Knox initial statements, when she falsely accused Lumumba. The scientifical part can be explained and does go with it. If it doesn't, Supreme Court will tell, with US diplomacy waiting outside the door.

    For those who say she's been forced, it appears that she made her statements three times: talking to the police, later on wrote them down while alone and then gave the sheets to the police, later again while talking to her mother thinking no one was listening (yes, it appears she told her mom Lumumba had killed Kercher).

    -- One more thing: someone asked if a defendant could lie on trial. I believe so, I believe the italian law allows a defendant to lie on trial. Witnesses can't though.
    UK lawyer Mills was convicted for lying on Berlusconi's trial to save his a$$, though then spared by statute of limitation. Mills had been bribed. When his tax people asked where the money came from, the fool wrote them a letter claiming it was Berlusconi's bribe "to cut tricky corners on stand". He must have thought they were all as filthy as he is.
  13. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    No; appeals are only granted if there is a finding of judicial error in the initial trial.

    Whether or not there would have been an appeal granted in this case would have depended on the trial. I don't think you can say one way or another, given the differences in systems.
  14. loulou

    loulou Let It Snow

    That makes quite a difference.
    It might suck that in Italy the prosecutor can appeal, but it must be nice to know that if you are convicted, you'll be able to read in detail why, and you'll be granted an appeal in which you'll have the chance to address your previous failures.

    I haven't heard anything that could weaken the first trial: as far as I know it was by the book. And I also haven't heard about new elements added later on. What I believe they did, is merely introducing different scenarios (particularly related the scientific evidences), that could plant doubts.

    But you're right: I can't say whether Knox would have been granted appeal in the US, nor anyone else can say she wouldn't have been convicted in the US.
  15. my little pony

    my little pony war crawling into canada

    how many ignore lists are you on gurl?

    if anyone had the ability to scrub their dna out of that room, while leaving guede's - they need a CSI show.
  16. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    That's the thing, though; the book would be different. A jury here might not convict on the same evidence; some evidence may or may not have been admitted; any number of things could have resulted in a different outcome.

    If they had been convicted and appealed, the success or failure of the appeal would also depend on what occurred at that specific trial.

    I think that if the trial had been held here in the US, the lack of DNA at the scene would have made it very hard for a prosecutor to get a conviction--provided that that information was allowed into the trial (one never knows)--because everyone watches CSI and jurors tend to think they know a lot about DNA evidence, much to the exasperation of both prosecutors and defense attorneys. Nearly all cases in the US are tried based on circumstantial evidence, so that by itself isn't a significant difference, but I think the DNA thing would be deadly for the prosecution here.

    And having said that, I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing. Americans in general might overestimate their knowledge of DNA evidence, but that doesn't mean that DNA evidence or the lack thereof is not a real issue.
  17. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I know Prancer doesn't have one. :p And she has a legal background, no?
    They need a bloody Nobel in physiology or medicine.
  18. my little pony

    my little pony war crawling into canada

    prancer has all the backgrounds, remember that before you type
    RFOS and (deleted member) like this.
  19. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    PML! I was a paralegal in business and real estate 25 years ago.

    It you want legal advice on a criminal trial issue, find a criminal lawyer. We ought to have one around here somewhere; we have several lawyers on board.
  20. numbers123

    numbers123 Well-Known Member

    I agree with this statement. The Kerchers are victims of the botched justice system. I really don't know what I think about Amanda's innocence or guilt.
  21. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I don't want legal advice, I want an opinion on the question of the lack of DNA of both Knox and boyfriend at the crime scene. How could they have done it? I have trouble believing in their guilt without DNA present.

    Do we have a criminal lawyer in the house?
  22. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    But you're an American. We are rather fixated on DNA.
  23. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    In the USSR they used to say that genetics is the sellout whore of imperialism. They said it with a straight face too.

    Is there another kind of whore that doesn't sell out?
  24. Coco

    Coco Well-Known Member

    what does that even mean?
  25. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    That it's not a science but an evil invention of the West, not sure about the whore part.

    So yeah, we are fixated on the DNA, should we be more fixated on how guilty she looked sitting in her boyfriend's lap?
  26. Vagabond

    Vagabond Well-Known Member

    I'm a lawyer, but have next to no experience in criminal law.

    As I understand it, the evidence is the testimony of Rudy Guede, who was convicted of Meredith Kercher's murder:



    As for Raffaele Sollecito:



    I'd say he was framed and she is being convicted on the testimony of a murderer with whom she apparently had only a passing acquaintance.

    If anyone has a better theory, please share.
  27. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    OK, so what do people who think Knox and Sollecito are guilty have to say to explain this? Thanks, Vagabond.
  28. cruisin

    cruisin Banned Member

    What doesn't match? The appeal is always granted. The appeal determines the upholding or the reversal of the lower court's ruling. Then, if the decision is overturned, the prosecutor decides if he will retry the case or let it stand. There would be no reason for appeal if the person is not convicted. I am confused as to what is confusing you.

    Actually, that is not correct. Appeals are always granted in criminal cases. The appeal is where they determine whether or not there was judicial error and whether or not the lower court decision should hold. See above. Got my info from the 3 lawyers in my family.
  29. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    The original case against Amanda Knox (and from the BBC, so we can't be accused of using stupid Amerikan new sources): http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/15036490

    I understand from reading the previously linked article that the prosecutors changed their theory on why Kercher was murdered, from some sort of sex thing that went awry to an argument over the cleanliness of the apartment. I'm not really sure where Guede came into that, but if I find it, I will post it.

    ETA: Departing from a previous motive favoured by prosecutors – that of the "sex game gone wrong" – Crini asked the court to consider that the murder had arisen from a household row over cleanliness that had been sparked by Guede's "disgusting and incongruous habit" of not flushing the toilet.

    Not sure how the entire murder would have unfolded from there or why the theory was changed, though.

    Prosecutors can appeal in Italy if there is no conviction.

    Er, yes, that's true. :shuffle: It's just that you have to have grounds on which to appeal, so it's not always done.

    And it seems that judicial fault was found in the re-trial: Strongly critical of the Perugia appeals court's handling of the case, the cassation court alleged that there had been a litany of procedural failures: a "manifest lack of logic" here, a "bald assertion with no factual basis" there, even, at one point, "factual deductions deriving from a series of conjectures and baseless suppositions".
  30. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    OK, whether it was over the unflushed toilet or a re-imagined Eyes Wide Shut is pretty irrelevant. For all I care, they were trying to implant an alien into the victim. Where is the DNA? Yup, I AM fixated on the DNA.