Friday, April 29, 2011

Sollecito Family Trial Begins

Today, the family members of Raffaele Sollecito faced their first day of trial. Raffaele’s family: Francesco Sollecito (his father), Vanessa Sollecito (his sister), Mara Papagni (his stepmother) Giuseppe Sollecito (his uncle) and Sara Achille (his aunt) all from Bari have been charged with leaking a crime scene video out of the 10,000-plus pages plus of evidence and exhibits to Telenorba, a Bari television station. The charges are as follows: defamation, invasion of privacy, and publication of arbitrary acts of a criminal case.

The prosecutors are Giuliano Mignini and Manuela Comodi; the judge is Alberto Avena; the Sollecito defense team consists of Marco Brusco, Francesco Crisis, Luca Maori and Donatella Donati; and the Kercher family (along with their lawyer, Francesco Maresca) is civil party to the trial and damages could be awarded to them if the defendants are found guilty.

The video included deeply upsetting close-ups of Meredith’s uncovered body and the wounds to her neck. It was later re-broadcast by the state network RAI throughout Italy. Vanessa Sollecito was fired from the Carabinieri late in 2009 for her involvement in this attempt to manipulate politicians.

During today’s proceedings, the Sollecito defense team raised an objection regarding issues of jurisdiction. Judge Avena postponed the hearing until 27 June 2011, at which time this matter will be decided.

In related news, the Lifetime movie Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy makes its debut in Canada this Sunday May 1 at 6 p.m. ET on Slice. The TV movie depicts the real-life murder case of British university exchange student Meredith Kercher (Amanda Fernando Stevens). The film focuses on Amanda Knox (Hayden Panettiere, Heroes), and Raffaele Sollecito (Paolo Romio) and Ivory Coast-born Rudy Guede (Djibril Kébé).

Some journalists praise the movie, claiming that it was well-crafted and executed. However, the movie is flooded with inaccuracies—so much so that it will confuse those who know little about the case. Amanda Knox and her lawyers have protested against the movie. However, it is not as incriminating as if a movie was made on the story accurately portraying the full details. I am not trying to dissuade anyone from watching the movie—it was an interesting portrayal and provides a decent visual of the events—but don’t think that you can “solve the case” simply by watching the movie.

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