Entries in Slander (2)


Amanda Knox's Family Slams 'Harassment' By Italian Prosecutor

Oli Scarff/Getty Images(PERUGIA, Italy) -- The family of Amanda Knox said Tuesday that efforts by Italian prosecutors to put her back in prison is "an example of the harassment" by prosecutors who are intent on prolonging "this terrible, painful incident."

Knox's family put out the statement after prosecutor Giovanni Galati filed a 112-page appeal seeking to throw out a court ruling that found Knox innocent of her roommate's murder and set her free after four years in an Italian prison.

Galati said he is "very convinced" that Knox and her former Italian boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito killed Meredith Kercher Nov. 1, 2007. Kercher, Knox's British roommate, was found dead in her room with her throat slashed.

Knox's family said they knew the prosecution would challenge the court's ruling.

"We are not concerned about this appeal as Amanda's innocence was clearly and convincingly proven in her appeal trial," the statement said. "This is simply another example of harassment by the prosecution against Amanda and makes this terrible, painful incident continue to go on for Amanda, Raffaele and their families."

Galati said the appeals court conclusion had "omissions and many errors," according to ANSA, the Italian news agency.

Knox and Sollecito were freed after the independent review found that DNA evidence was badly mishandled, could have been contaminated and was so minute it was not legally credible.

In setting aside Knox and Sollecito's convictions, the court said the prosecutor's allegation "was not corroborated by any objective element of evidence and in itself was not, in fact probable: the sudden choice of two young people, good and open to other people, to do evil for evil's sake, just like that, without another reason."

Tuesday's appeal came more than four months after Knox, 24, and Sollecito, 27, were freed in a dramatic ruling in Perugia, Italy.

Knox has several legal issues still pending in Italy. She is appealing her conviction of slandering her former boss Patrick Lumumba, which she claims she was pressured by Italian police to implicate during a marathon interrogation.

She faces charges of slandering her police interrogators for claiming they hit her in the head during her grilling.

Her parents also face slander charges for repeating their daughter's claim about the police interrogation.

It's not clear whether the Knoxes will return to Italy for more legal proceedings, but her Italian lawyer Carlo Dall Vedova said earlier this year that Knox "loves Italy," and would return as a witness at her parents' trial.

A third person, Ivory Coast-born drifter Rudy Guede, was convicted of taking part in Kercher's murder in a separate trial. He is serving a 16-year prison sentence.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Amanda Knox Back in Italian Court for Slander Trial

TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty Images(ROME) -- Amanda Knox was back in an Italian courtroom for a brief appearance Tuesday in her new trial on charges that she slandered Italian police during her murder trial.

Looking at ease, wearing a white long-sleeve t-shirt, black slacks and a green band in her hair, Knox, 23, was escorted into the courtroom by jail guards.  She smiled as soon as she saw her father, Curt Knox, who just arrived from their home in Seattle Monday night from the U.S. and who she hasn't seen for a number of months.

Knox was in the Perugia courtroom for the first hearing of a new trial in which she is accused of slandering seven Perugia police officials and an interpreter.  The slander accusation stems from Knox's testimony that police were abusive towards her while she was being interrogated prior to her Nov. 6, 2007 arrest.

Knox has been imprisoned in Perugia since then and was sentenced to 26 years in prison last December following her murder conviction.  Her then-boyfriend of less than two weeks, Raffaele Sollecito, was sentenced to 25 years on the same charges.  Another defendant, Rudy Guede, was sentenced separately for the Kercher murder to a 30-year term which was reduced to 16 years on appeal.

Knox and Sollecito's appeal trial for the murder started last November and is still underway in Perugia.

Knox insists she is innocent in Kercher's death and denies the slander charges.  Her lawyers say she was just trying to defend herself in court and never meant to offend or slander the police.  If convicted of slander, any prison sentence imposed would be added to her current sentence.

Although Tuesday was the first trial hearing in the slander trial and was expected to be purely procedural, Knox showed up as she has done for every trial and pre-trial hearing in which she is the accused.

In a sparsely-attended hearing, Knox answered 'Si', yes in Italian, to the question from Judge Daniele Cenci if she understood Italian.  The 17-minute session was promptly adjourned until Nov. 15 after a number of procedural issues raised by the defense.

Knox's parents, Edda Mellas and Curt Knox, also face slander charges for repeating their daughter's claims during an interview with a London newspaper.  Their libel case is scheduled to begin July 4.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio