Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Amanda Knox Back in Court for Slander

Amanda Knox was back in court today facing slander charges. Knox originally testified that she was smacked in the head twice by a female police officer during her November 5, 2007, interrogation. If found guilty, Knox could face an additional six-years on top of her 26-year sentence for the murder of Meredith Kercher.

One of Knox’s lawyers, Luciano Ghirga, argued in court today that it is improper for the slander charge to be heard by Judge Claudia Matteini, because she had presided over one of the preliminary hearings for the murder charges. This objection by Ghirga prompted an adjournment until June 17th, at which time it is likely that a new judge will be assigned to hear the case.

The trail for the slander charge is scheduled to take place on October 1, 2010. Knox and her former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito’s, appeals are due to start around the same time. This means that Knox herself might well be involved in two trials at the same time. Worse case scenario for Knox, if she loses the slander case and the prosecution wins the appeal, she could actually be facing upwards of 40 years total.

As for Knox and Sollecito’s appeal, Prosecutor General, Giancarlo Costagliola, has been chosen to prosecute. Unfortunately for Knox and Sollecito, Costagliola was recommended by prosecutors of the last trial, Manuela Comodi and Giuliano Mignini. There is currently a problem deciding who the judge will be, as every judge has in some way contributed to prior hearings on the case in some way. Only the President of the Court of Appeal remains as a viable candidate, but he’s about to retire. So, currently there is no judge left for the appeal. What ever will they do? Most likely a judge from Rome will be assigned to preside over the appeal, at which time Knox and her team will probably ask for change of venue.

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