Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Appeal Session #3: The Carabinieri Labs Report On The DNA On The Knife

Posted by Our Main Posters

[Above: an image of similar testing in the same Carabinieri laboratory in north Rome]

Final Update

So the court session does not even extend beyond the lunch hour. Good morning Seattle! At this moment it is still only 3:30 in the morning there. Only night owls will know what happened.

Yummi and Mason2 may have more for us, which will appear either here below this final update on in Comments.  Also Andrea Vogt and hopefully Barbie Nadeau will be filing longer reports in English. We will also check out all the Italian reporting.

Hard to see any game changers in today’s strong but undramatic testimony. The Carabinieri RIS DNA experts could not be shaken. All momentum remains with the prosecution and with the Supreme Court’s “givens” on the evidence, such as the presence of three attackers in Meredith’s room. 

The defenses seem to be giving up. They could have phoned it in. Sollecito lawyer Bongiorno didnt make any new fuss. And Amanda Knox lawyer Dalla Vedova was cut off by the lead judge several times, for trickily going off the point. He really is out of his depth in a criminal trial; at the same time often condescending.

And a seeming big slap in the face for the American defense stooge Greg Hampikian who seems to have illegally colluded with the disgraced Hellmann consultants Conti and Vecchiotti (who were not even mentioned today) when Judge Nencini asked Dr Barni “Would you be able to provide reliable standards without using suggestions from Americans?” Dr Barni responded “Of course”.

And Sollecito “wasted” his statement by whining about his life, showing no compassion for Meredith (despite his claimed visit to her grave), and not answering any of the dozens of open questions. Sollecito really needed to show he is both strong and compassionate and NOT a weakling under the thumb of Amanda - but he seems to have done quite the opposite. The family lawyer must not be too pleased.

Fifth Update

The opening of Frank Sforza’s trial in the same courthouse is postponed, apparently because new information on his campaign to poison opinion against the judiciary and his unsavory connections has been coming in.

Information will be exchanged that is gathered at this trial on mafiosos Luciano Aviello and at Aviello’s own trial for obstruction of justice which is now proceeding in the same Florence courthouse in parallel.

The findings and possible charges on the defamatory and dishonest books by Knox and Sollecito are due about now from the Florence and Bergamo prosecutors. Information gathered in those investigations could also be fed in to this process, or put aside for separate trials.

As both the AK and RS books are bulging with the standard PR talking points (some of which flowed from Frank Sforza and Doug Preston) in a sense it will be Curt Knox, the Mellases, Marriott, Sforza, Fischer and Moore who will be put under the microscope.

Fourth Update

A more detailed report on the DNA phase today from the Andrea Vogt website.

The RIS Wednesday deposited their forensic report on trace 36i, a spot of DNA identified (but not earlier tested) on the kitchen knife alleged to be the murder weapon. “Cento Percento” (100 percent) said Major Berti, discussing compatibility. The RIS found that the DNA was compatible with Amanda Knox, and excluded that it was that of Sollecito, Guede or Kercher. 

The RIS expert was asked only a few questions from attorneys and the judge. The judge asked why the RIS had done two amplications of the DNA and not 3 or 4. Major Berti described that two is considered the minimum number of amplifications necessary, according to today’s forensic standards, doing less (or more) might have diminished the reliability of the results. The judge also asked about the age of the equipment used. Berti responded that the forensic kit used this time has been commercialized since 2010 and available for use since 2011. 

At one point the judge stopped a line of questioning by Knox’s Rome attorney Carlo Dalla Vedova, who was asking why the RIS described Knox’s DNA as “fluids” when a prior expert had said the trace did not come from blood.  Nencini said: That question was not put to the RIS by this court, it was not their job to determine that. The other experts’ reports are in the case files for everyone to read, he noted, adding: “We cannot put words in the mouth of this expert that were said by another expert.”

Third Update

Tweets from our main poster Yummi (Machiavelli)

32. Judge Nencini’s comments were always addressed at Dalla Vedova’s arguments, who was in fact a bit silly

31. The Judge declared the evidence phase closed. Next court dates are 25 November for prosecution argument and 26 for the defences with 16 and 17 December.

30. Judge Nencini asked Dr Barni “would you be able to provide reliable standards without using suggestions from Americans?” Dr Barni: “of course”

29. Dalla Vedova said Tagliabracci was the only Italian source in the RIS report, all others are foreigners, emphasized the American labs…

28. Sollecito said his family absolutely never had issues with justice. And he is a proud ‘member’ of that family

27. He also played the ‘national’ card, as he remphasized ‘I am Italian’ twice and then addressed the court ‘I am an Italian, as you are’

26. Sollecito mentioned the defens’s arguments (he has an orthopedical issue with his foot etc.).

25. The questions of all parties to the experts were intended to elicit information to be used in arguing the unrelated previous finding

24. He mentioned Meredith’s name only once, to say he barely knew her.

23. Sollecito talked with a faint voice, a long speech in which he described himself as a victim.

22. The Carabinieri say that there are only a few governmental laboratories which have the 17025 certificate (the Carabinieri and the Police)

21. Nencini stops Dalla Vedova, points out that scientific community is international

20. Dalla Vedova tries to elicit that the good standards are not the Italian ones.

19. The RIS obtained the ISO9001 certificate in 2008, and a more specific certificate in 2012.

18. Bongiorno asks RIS to explain why two amplifications are recommended.

17. Prosecutor Crini asks if there are criteria to distinguish which labs or which experts are more competent.

16. Speaking about their software which allows to weight probabilities of attribution.

15. They note that three alleles which are ‘alien’ were drop off in one duplicate.

14. The biologic method has a ‘consensus’ interpretation and a ‘composite’ interpretation, two ways to interpret the double result.

13. They describe the methods employed, the ‘biologic’ method and the ‘statistic’ method.

12. Absence of any male trace stands out as a feature of the sample (all contributors are females)

11. They extracted two profiles in a duplicate in agreement with experts of all parties

10. Dr Berti says the sample was a low template. They have a strategy to obtain reliable results.

9. Points out that documentation says sample 36i comes from insertion of blade in the handle.

8. Dr. Berti summarizes the recovery of sample in Vecchiotti’s lab.

7. Bongiorno says Sollecito intends to release a spontaneous declaration. He will do that after the experts testimony.

6. Berti and Barni enter the court.

5. Many law students from the Florence school for Magistrates are in court to follow the hearing.

4. Sollecito had managed to enter the courtroom from side entrance eluding photographers. Carlo Torre arrives in court.

3. Giulia Bongiorno & Raff kiss each other. Giulia, Raff & Father have a worried discussion

2. I wonder… will the court withdraw his passport?

1. Raffaele Sollecito is in courtroom. Walking in empty room, few people waiting. Hearing will start 1/2h probably

Second Update

Tweets from Patricia Thomas (AP) and Sabina Castelfranco (AP)

Patricia Thomas “@MozzarellaMamma:  RaffaeleSollecito - Amanda Knox and I were very carefree and isolated in our love nest.

Sabina Castelfranco “@SCastelfranco:  Sollecito says he is not the assassin he has been described as. Says Amanda was his first love

Patricia Thomas “@MozzarellaMamma:  RaffaeleSollecito - I have been described as an assassin. Amanda Knox was my first real love in life

Patricia Thomas “@MozzarellaMamma:  RaffaeleSollecito takes stand to make statement, starts complaining about media descriptions of himself

First Update

Tweets from Barbie Nadeau

35. Nov 25 - prosecution; 26 - civil; Dec 16 - Sollectio; 17 - Knox; Jan 9 - rebuttals, 10 deliberation and verdict

34. Dec. 16, 17 closing arguments for Knox and Sollecito

33. Judge closes hearing for day, says closing arguments begin Nov 25, 26, must find December dates to conclude

32. Sollecito finishes by thanking judges for their time, judge tells him he can intervene any time during rest of appeal until they deliberate

31. Sollecito says he hates the fame, how it has hurt him, how it isn’t fair

20. Sollecito says he has a difficult time looking for work, people associate him with the murder of meredith kercher

29. Sollecito says that even on his vacation in Dominican Republic, he had to defend himself like a public figure, his life is judged by all

28. Sollecito repeats twice that he never met Rudy Guede, how nothing in original trial was based on reality.

27. Sollecito takes trip down memory lane, highlights worst parts of trial and incarceration for him, has not mentioned meredith kercher yet

26. RaffaeleSollecito - I feel a persecution. It is a nightmare, beyond all imagination.

25. RaffaeleSollecito—close to tears as he testifies to court “I am fighting every day to bring out the truth” 

24. Jury totally transfixed by sollecito declaration, can’t take their eyes off him

23. Sollecito thanks and defends his family, calls amand knox his first love

22. Judge asks for Sollecito declaration now

21. Judge asks about relevance of kit they used, how old technology was, etc.

20. Judge asks what minimum testing is for validation of DNA, RIS says “at least two”

19. Judge tells Dallavedova he cannot put words in mouth of new expert that were said by previous experts, this is fresh analysis

18. Judge clarifies that RIS was not asked to reanalyze work that has been done, but to test a sample that has not been tested.

17. Dallavedova essentially kicks goal into own net, not doing amanda knox any favors by making RIS defend methods used in original conviction

16. Dallavedova manages to get RIS expert to defend Italian methods, says they are in line with global standards, this was crux of 1st appeal

15. DallaVedova asks about international protocol, backfires slightly b/c RIS expert says he doesn’t want to dis italian methods, are valid too

14. Bongiorno hammers point that international standards in DNA must be followed ([claims]they were not for meredithkercher sample on tip of knife)

13. Jury in new appeal trial for amanda knox; sollecito look totally lost, lots of daydreaming during DNA testimony, nail biting, looking around

12. Bongiorno asks RIS expert specifics of amplification of sample with an eye to trace with meredith kercher DNA that was amplified many times

11. Prosecutor asking for clarification on how samples are tested, how RIS experts are qualified, etc.

10. RIS: DNA testing as important to exclude suspects as to confirm them, in this case no question that amandaknox DNA is on knife, others’ not

9. RIS: testifying about international standards necessary to validate DNA, how they used in their examination of this particular spot on knife

8. Sollecito listening attentively and jotting notes as RIS expert testifies about the knife

7. RIS: the spot they tested on the knife (near handle) matched definitively the DNA of amandaknox in double tests

6. RIS: the spot they tested on the knife did not match meredith kercher or rudy guede or sollecito after double testing

5. RIS: Experts tested spot “H” [?] on the knife (the spot near the handle) for both the victim meredith kercher and suspect

4. RIS: DNA analysis showed no x chromosome, i.e.: no male chromosome in sample they tested on knife

3. RIS: essential in DNA testing to double test samples to validate results

2. RIS expert: explains technical details of testing DNA, how much is needed, how it is tested

1. Judge says he wants to hear from RIS experts first and then sollecito can give his declaration

Initial Post

Well, that first shot from the court at the top sure is a surprise, and maybe bad news for Amanda Knox. Where are Sollecito’s other lawyers, Bongiorno and Maori? Presumably they are off to the side talking. .

In tweets Andrea Vogt has mentioned that she is reporting for the BBC and the Associated Press TV; reporters cannot have bigger clients or more global reach than with those two. This is from Andrea Vogt’s website.

Court is now in session. Day will begin with RIS forensic debates. Raffaele Sollecito will make a statement later in the day.

Sollecito arrived in the Florence court of appeals looking relaxed and ready to make his case before the court later in the day. His father, Francesco Sollecito, also appeared visibly happy to have his son back in arms reach, after an extended stay in the Caribbean. A large number of his friends were in the audience.

Forensic experts for the defense Walter Patumi, Carlo Torre and Sarah Gino were also in attendance in preparation for debate on the new DNA evidence tested by the RIS in Rome, specifically, trace 36i on the kitchen knife alleged to be the murder weapon. RIS say the DNA profile is that of Amanda Knox. Arguments today will mostly about how it might have gotten there, with prosecutors attempting to place it in the context of the murder and defense attorneys arguing it could have been transferred during normal domestic use of the utensil.

Next hearings are Nov. 25-26, with a verdict expected in mid-December.


Looking forward for an exciting day!

Let us hope that we will get some details about the defense experts’ comment on the MK DNA on the knife. That is going to be the major item today…

Posted by chami on 11/06/13 at 11:56 AM | #

So Raffaele’s statement is more of the same.


Posted by thundering on 11/06/13 at 12:52 PM | #

So there we have it.

Over in the blink of an eye.

Quite an anti-climax.

Posted by thundering on 11/06/13 at 01:55 PM | #

Disappointing from Sollecito, but not really surprising…is consistent with his position long held.

Posted by SeekingUnderstanding on 11/06/13 at 02:00 PM | #

Is it true that 36B could now be worth less when balanced against the two samples from AK?

Posted by Spencer on 11/06/13 at 02:07 PM | #

Not “the mouse that roared” then, more “the mouse that whined”. Plus ca change…

Posted by Odysseus on 11/06/13 at 02:15 PM | #

Yes over in the b;link of an eye as Thundering says. Its all been said in sequence and of course the defense lawyers grilled the RIS about every detail of their testing and methodology.

Raffaele Sollecito is a poster boy for Dont judge a book by its cover.

His immaculate and coiffed appearance in the classic ivy league collage look.

The voice lacks strength but what he says is a speech very well rehearsed all about himself. It’s poor me over and over again.

Only once he said Meredith’s name and only to say he hardly knew her.

So what’s he doing out at her tomb is my question.

The panel on judges were totally transfixed on him during his speech.

His language was extremely soft spoken very polite italian to the judges.

He looks like butter would not melt in his mouth. He has never been cross examined in Court and asked to account for his lies and changing alibis and a mountain of other evidence.

He looks and acts the victim and it was a great perfomance but God i hope the jury does not buy it.

Posted by Mason2. on 11/06/13 at 02:48 PM | #

Hi Spencer

On DNA sample 36B the Meredith trace which was analysed by Dr Stefanoni, it should be given the same weight by this court as it was by Judge Massei (which was a lot).

There is no reason not to. Her amplification was observed by defense watchers, and they saw nothing wrong in what she did.

And today’s proceedings did not even touch on it, except for a thwarted attempt by Dalla Vedova who was cut short by Judge Nencini.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/06/13 at 02:50 PM | #

Dissapointing .Sollecito’s lawyer must even regret that an opportunity was missed. so the same old lying and whining lines from Sollecito.

Also no verdict till Jan 9/10 14. Wonder will Sollecito deign to attend then?.The Massei report still stands. He will deserve every year handed down to him when that verdict comes in…

Not a single word of regret for Meredith.

Posted by Olliebear on 11/06/13 at 02:56 PM | #

Hi Olliebear

It is not really disappointing other than that Sollecito did not break with Amanda or start to show compassion for the real vicitm. It was low-key today but the prosecution will be very pleased.

Judge Nencini allowed no further fishing expeditions and he moved the agenda straight to summations - which at trial in 2009 (please read our 2009 posts) the prosecution “won” quite brilliantly.

The DNA evidence is unshaken, more information is entering the process from other directions, and Sollecito did not knock down even one evidence point.

Meddling with the process has spun it out for a needless two years, but now looks to have been a disaster.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/06/13 at 03:23 PM | #

Question/ can Sollecito be asked any questions by the judges in these proceedings ?

I’d like to ask him a few squeeky bum questions

1/ You attempted to explain the presence DNA belonging to Meredith found on the blade of your kitchen knife, by saying you pricked her whilst cooking, where, when, why, how, please Explain.
2/ How is it, that your alibi has come to change several times.
3/ Why did you not speak out in your own defence in the courtroom in 2009
4/ How did your DNA come to be on the bra clasp
5/ Didn’t you realise it would be hurtful to the Kercher family, finding out that you had visited Meredith’s grave, if so why did you announce this to the world.

I’m sure others would have far more strategically important questions for the little worm, but id sure like to hear his response to those above

Posted by mollythecat on 11/06/13 at 03:41 PM | #

Thanks to all of you for these updates.  It is most appreciated because TJMK and PMF are the only 2 sites I read to learn the truth !

So Raf showed up in Court and spouted the same old “song and dance.”  “Chicken” !

Posted by MissMarple on 11/06/13 at 03:44 PM | #

Is that the hero in the top picture with folded hands? He should be on bended knees!

Oh, he said he has some problem with his feet and he cannot kick but only run. That is what he is good at.

When he says that he is an Italian, he means that he is not an American.

So the job of the defense is to discredit the earlier results, but that is not going to be a cakewalk!

Is he going to answer any questions at all?

Posted by chami on 11/06/13 at 03:48 PM | #

Hi Chami.

Sollecito’s praying hands in the top shot? Amanda Knox struck the same pose outside the house on the morning when Meredith’s body was discovered.

Image now added above at the end of the post. PMF chat at different times has wondered if that was an unconscious guilt signal.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/06/13 at 04:18 PM | #

praying hands…(overt prayer)....I pray for (something to happen) against all odds..??

Posted by SeekingUnderstanding on 11/06/13 at 04:35 PM | #

I understand from mason2’s tweets he was smiling at friends and family in court? The ‘praying hands’ directed at them? Any familiar faces, Americans, Vanessa Sollecito?

Posted by Ergon on 11/06/13 at 04:40 PM | #

re hands:

An unconscious attempt to get/stay centred? I have sometimes found myself doing this in the past.

Posted by Odysseus on 11/06/13 at 05:05 PM | #

Perhaps the context is everything here?

Posted by SeekingUnderstanding on 11/06/13 at 05:29 PM | #

As I like to get into detail the full answer to the following would have been interesting.

18. Bongiorno asks RIS to explain why two amplifications are recommended.

17. Prosecutor Crini asks if there are criteria to distinguish which labs or which experts are more competent.

16. Speaking about their software which allows to weight probabilities of attribution.

15. They note that three alleles which are ‘alien’ were drop off in one duplicate.

14. The biologic method has a ‘consensus’ interpretation and a ‘composite’ interpretation, two ways to interpret the double result.

13. They describe the methods employed, the ‘biologic’ method and the ‘statistic’ method.

10. Dr Berti says the sample was a low template. They have a strategy to obtain reliable results.

As to 18 above I wonder whether Bongiorno did actually say “recommended”. I would have thought that she would have wanted to stress that it is more than “recommended” for a result to be reliable. Perhaps she now understands that evidence and scientific validation are different things.

As to 15 - interesting. 3 “alien” alleles which are probably drop-ins as they drop-out in the test of the duplicate. Halkides argues that the presence of 2 (or was it 3?) such drop ins in the Meredith trace is evidence of contamination but here the duplicate test shows that their presence in the first test can not be accepted and interpreted as anything of the sort. Indeed there has been research showing that these drop-ins occur with established non-contamination LCN. The RIS experts could have been asked to comment on that without reference to the 36B.

And yes, I was amused to hear the expert say that Italians are able to meet standards and understand the science without input from americans.

Posted by James Raper on 11/06/13 at 05:29 PM | #


True - whenever I’ve found I was doing it I wasn’t up on a murder charge!

Posted by Odysseus on 11/06/13 at 05:32 PM | #

So, reading all of that and Andrea, seems to be going through the process, not admitting new argument on old evidence, a few new things here and there.

If you were the defences, you’d not be happy bunnies at this point.

Doesn’t leave us a lot to comment on but that’s no bad thing.  We could do without the drama of the Hellman court.

Posted by James Higham on 11/06/13 at 05:59 PM | #

Judge Nencini is running a tight ship. He’s doing a splendid job. Best news is that Dr. Berti and Dr. Barni held firm and their test results are precise. Amanda Knox’s DNA is on the knife, AGAIN.

RIS Carabinieri argue the Italian labs have high standards on a par with global standards. This lends more credence to Stefanoni’s result of Meredith’s DNA on knife. Bongiorno and Dalla Vedova both trying in unison to cast doubt on that fatal clue.

Thank you to Yummi and Mason2 for the trial news, and to Peter Quennell’s assessment of it.

I’ve been looking at the photos of Florence trial. Marvelous pic of the staunch Maresca, such a serious person with no silliness about him. Good man, stays on task. Dr. Sollecito is loyally present. He’s quite a survivor himself, what that man has endured from his gadfly of a son.

Seems Judge Nencini had to swat a few flies in the courtroom one named Dalla Vedova. As Knox’s lawyer old Dally couldn’t move the ball ten yards for a touchdown. Instead he fumbled, then RIS intercepted it turning Vedova’s questioning of their competence into a high yardage run that highlighted the reliability of their protocols. 

Poor Knox, watching from the sidelines. This time it’s Raffaele who suited up for the game, all smiles.

Boy does he look relieved. It’s like a huge inner burden has lifted since he’s back in familiar territory. It’s now the courtroom where he feels comfortable, at least he’s home in Italy.

He prefers being surrounded by people of high estate whose attention he craves, the media as well, within limits. There are worse things than the peering and probing of his own good countrymen. He is back under dad’s protection and close to family resources. Much of life on the run stress is behind him unless he bolts again. He has his hands pressed together almost in prayer.

He must feel relaxed and with a self-esteem hike, being back in the middle of the action and momentarily proud of taking his courage up a notch to walk into the risky courtroom.

The Dominican Republic escape was rather temporary. I bet he hardly slept a wink. Maybe the friends lending him their condo wanted him out in a month.

I believe him when he says he has no life. He is in limbo and can’t start anything longterm until this case is over. However, he is exaggerating his lack of work opportunities.

He’s pouring it on heavy for the Florence judges that it’s in their power to stop his wasted life, as if he might achieve as much as his father did.

He plays the card loud and clear of: “Look at me I’m the scion of an old, august Italian family. Don’t do this to my doctor dad and my uncles, even if you don’t respect me. Until I went rogue, this family did respect the justice system. I had a Carabinieri sister, a pilot. We have wealth, we pay taxes. I’m a son of Italy. I’m polite, not like the hoyden who created this tragedy for all of us. Please show grace and favor instead of convicting me. If you do I’ll achieve wonders in life and help the nation. I have no desire for Switzerland or the U.S. or Dominican Republic or the UK, I want to come home to Bella Italia, please. Let me go free and I’ll accomplish great things.”

Raffaele’s message: I’ve learned my lesson from what I suffered in prison. I’ve found that fame is a cruel mistress. Plus it wasn’t my footprint on the blue rug that set the whole ball rolling against me, and none of the prosecution witnesses was correct. I want my life back, you won’t regret it.

I think he halfway believes it in the heady emotions of return from exile. Odds are however that if Raffaele had never met Knox or Meredith he would probably still be drifting in some degree program seven years after graduation from Perugia a perpetual student, still smoking weed.

Maybe his declaration that Knox was his first true love which he expressed in the Florence court is code to Knox that he won’t squeal on her. His demeanor of relief and pleasure as he sits by his lawyer might be from savoring the chance to speak these sweet nothings in Knox’s ear again and reassure her he won’t break ranks.

The good news is that momentum is still with the prosecution. The Carabinieri RIS experts both Berti and Barni validate the prosecution focus on Knox as knife handler.

Posted by Hopeful on 11/06/13 at 06:25 PM | #

Americans are being told by the US media that the results support AK and RS because the DNA results only show AK’s DNA, which is consistent with their account that this is a mere kitchen knife that she cut herself on.

There is a lot of trumpeting that Meredith’s DNA has not been found on the knife in this new round of DNA testing.


Knox’s knife DNA casts doubt on murder weapon

Posted by Gonzaga on 11/06/13 at 07:17 PM | #

It has been a very interesting day.I don’t think things have changed hardly at all as far as the evidence and analyses go.

However, that is the very importance of today’s session: the DNA results are at least as sure as they were before (with major questions about the way the C&V work and report were done). Raffaele continues denying responsibility of any type,and at the same time trying clumsily to play the “I’m a rich,white kid from a good family” card. Amanda is is hiding in Seattle.

And so,since there hasn’t been any earth-shaking news, the wheels of Justice are free to continue moving inexorably towards the end of this trial’s road.

I’m confident Justice will be done for Meredith.

Posted by Kermit on 11/06/13 at 07:31 PM | #

Agree with that Kermit.

IMO a huge plus for the prosecution, on 2 counts:

(i) Sollecito had a clear and uncontested opportunity to speak out; he could not even attempt to refute any of the evidence against him even when he knows he would not be subject to cross-examination!

(ii) Anyone can clearly see that his family have no problems staying in the ‘terrible’ country that [supposedly] framed him for this dreadful crime.

Posted by Rocket Queen on 11/06/13 at 07:45 PM | #

Lot of news!

@Gonzaga on 11/06/13 at 01:17 PM

It is wrong to say that the knife was tested for DNA. Once you say that a small sample collected from a region of the knife was tested for DNA. Out of the five regions tested for DNA, two showed AK and one showed MK DNA and two showed none (no DNA).

The knife was called exibit 36 and the different samples collected were labeled as 36a, 36b ...

@James Raper on 11/06/13 at 11:29 AM

Perhaps I can explain a few of the points:

18. Bongiorno asks RIS to explain why two amplifications are recommended.

The sample collected was divided first in two parts. Each part needed amplification. Errors during amplification are random and will not be the same in both. The real sample will show up in both. If you separate the sample after amplification, the same error will be present in both in identical manner.

This is easy to understand if you agree that the errors are introduced during the amplification process. The reason for this we shall not discuss.

17. Prosecutor Crini asks if there are criteria to distinguish which labs or which experts are more competent.

It is a routine question to have a confirmation on record that all labs and all experts are equally good if they have the same certification. This therefore is not a answer because it will pass the question to the certifying agency!

16. Speaking about their software which allows to weight probabilities of attribution.

This is a good question but not at all significant because we are not asking a question like ‘whose DNA it is’ but something like ‘does this DNA belong to AK, RS, RG or MK’. By the way, the probabilities of atribution is part of the DNA database (if I remember correctly) and not part of the software.

15. They note that three alleles which are ‘alien’ were drop off in one duplicate.

error or noise signals were produced during the amplification (when you turn up the volume on the radio, the noise gets also amplified in the same way) and may not be present in both- because it is a kind of noise. That is the signal being called ‘alien’ here. They are just spurious.

14. The biologic method has a ‘consensus’ interpretation and a ‘composite’ interpretation, two ways to interpret the double result.

In consensus, you consider peaks that are present in both. Peaks that are present in one are attributed to error or noise.

In composite, you consider all peaks as genuine and explain that some peaks got lost during amplification.

I think this is what they mean. Many things gets lost in translation!

13. They describe the methods employed, the ‘biologic’ method and the ‘statistic’ method.

I really do not know exactly these two models…

10. Dr Berti says the sample was a low template. They have a strategy to obtain reliable results.

During amplification, each DNA molecule becomes two. After 10 such cycles, the DNA has become 2^10 times more (about 1000 times) concentrated. After 20 such cycles (about 1,000,000) the amplification is about a million. After 30 cycles, one DNA molecules has become one billion molecules and is ready to be analysed on the real machine. If you start with 100 DNA molecules (in a ml) at the minimum, this is correct concentration. But if your starting material is 1-10 moelcules of DNA, this is still not sufficient and is called low copy number or low template.

Frankly speaking, if you get about 8-10 peaks match, it is very convincing and I do not know the details to comment.

Posted by chami on 11/06/13 at 08:06 PM | #

[Ed comment: While we appreciate first-hand-reporting, Mason2’s take here is not shared by native Italian speakers who were also in court; see sveral comments by Yummi below. When we got her a press pass, we believed that she was fluent in Italian and would provide good summaries on the lines of Stewart Home in 2009. Hopeful was not in the courtroom but the dissection above of the real RS is perfect.]

Am back in my hotel now relaxing and thinking over the morning’s events. What i saw of Raffaele this morning and how he gave an Academy Award performance.

He is taller than i imagined and his colouring is mousey as is his voice which has a kind of whine to it.

Hollywood could not have had the costume department provide a better outfit for him to look the perfect son and the highly educated and polished college boy who wouldn’t hurt a fly.

His speech to the Judges had been been carefully scripted by a very talented script writer with the focus on him being from a beautiful Italian family just like their families.

The look the coiffed hair a little makeup the very cool very relaxed demeanour while mixing with friends in the gallery like he was hosting a party or he was the guest of honour.

I believe as Hopeful wrote today that Raff and Amanda have made a pact and he is not going to break from her or their story. They are both very big risk takers and they have got the arrogance and gall and all of that and i believe that they have decided to go for broke and roll the dice in this Appeal.

The full attention he was given by the Judges has me worried. They were transfixed absolutely. Of course what he was really asking them to do was to ignore all the evidence against them and let them go and live out their lives in peace and quiet enjoyment.

Some of the Judges may have difficulty convicting him based on what i witnessed to day. Even though the Supreme Court has laid down the guidelines which really requires a guilty verdict.

Posted by Mason2. on 11/06/13 at 08:16 PM | #

“Sollecito said his family absolutely never had issues with justice. And he is a proud ‘member’ of that family”

Fortunately crime is not a copyright of anyone.

Today perhaps more crimes are committed with a telephone call (remote control) but perhaps I am going off-topic here…

Many people have personalized concept of justice.

Posted by chami on 11/06/13 at 08:19 PM | #

Thank you for being there, mason2, and giving us your sensitive observations. And Thankyou to Yummi, and everyone who contributes.

Posted by SeekingUnderstanding on 11/06/13 at 08:23 PM | #

Hi Mason,

You wrote:

“Some of the Judges may have difficulty convicting him based on what i witnessed to day.”

Judge Nencini has to justify the reasons for his verdict in his report. He won’t be able to claim Sollecito is innocent because he gave Academy Award performance.

Posted by The Machine on 11/06/13 at 08:42 PM | #

Hi Mason2.

You were actually there so your observation “The full attention he was given by the Judges has me worried. They were transfixed absolutely” has to be very disconcerting.

Still, trying to be positive(!) maybe they’re anxious to be seen to be listening precisely because it’s such an open and shut case; in fact may their attention be more in the way of pity for his (deserved) plight?

On the other hand the little brat might well have pulled off a fast one.(It doesn’t say a lot for the calibre of the judges if that’s the case. All the evidence undone by 15 minutes of charm!).

Anyway we shall see - thanks very much for your reports.

Posted by Odysseus on 11/06/13 at 08:55 PM | #

I imagine the court should be watching and listening closely to a person they were very probably about to pronounce a murderer. RS sounds so polished; perhaps they were trying to get to the “truth” by evaluating his performance.

Certainly they MUST know that a “spontaneous” statement after all this time and all of the vacationing and consulting could hardly be without contrivance.

If they’re smart they will be put off by the xenophobic comments suggesting RS is the only of the three to be an Italian and that he is somehow above a crime like this because of his “breeding” (read money, connections and lack of melanin…) If I were on the panel it would put me off almost to the point of prejudicing me against him. I hope they will see through it.

Thanks for all of the technical explanations Chami! And all of the first hand accounts Yummi and Mason!

Posted by carlos on 11/06/13 at 09:26 PM | #

Fascinating - both the article and the comments.
Why do they never mention RS Dna found on the bra clasp - seems very significant to me.

Posted by believing on 11/06/13 at 09:52 PM | #

AK’s stance outside the cottage with her hands together has never looked like praying to me - it always looked to me like she was pushing her hands together for emphasis, thrilled to be at the center of attention of the circle of men around her, telling them “see it was like this, I found the door open and then….”.  It is sort of a very strong determination and love of attention that seems part of her personality.

Posted by believing on 11/06/13 at 09:55 PM | #

Its seems a little strange, and slightly worrying to me, that after all these years of total certainty of his guilt, there seems to be some amongst us, who at the eleventh hour, are talking about RS, potentially swaying a panel merely due to some carefully phrased, practised, words, delivered after many rehearsals.

I for one am not, and never will be swayed by his rhetoric. As far as I am concerned this individual, is a maniac, capable of beating up and stabbing a young girl in her neck. ripping off her clothes and defiling her body sexually.

He might appear charming, so was Ted Bundy.

Lets not forget that this ‘gentleman’ has proved he is capable of acts of evil that very few amongst us are capable of, thanks goodness.

his pretty words are merely a silk handkerchief pulled from the pocket of a magician.

He’s a liar. a murderer, a sex offender.

Posted by mollythecat on 11/06/13 at 10:17 PM | #

As far as I understand it: today was just about the knife.

Posted by Helder Licht on 11/06/13 at 10:23 PM | #

@mollythecat - many here remember like yesterday the shock of the first appeals court. I myself, knowing they’re guilty, am almost bracing myself for a repeat performance of 2011 such is my belief in the Italian justice so tarnished.

But the other side to RS, beyond the pretty hair and soft voice of today, is the porn watching, manga reading drug user. That’s the RS I focus on right now.

Posted by TruthWillOut on 11/06/13 at 10:36 PM | #

Today wasn’t the revelation of facts about the knife I’d expected. Positive that the judge swatted AK’s legal team for trying to put words in the mouth of the expert testifying. Interesting too - shows determination that the track must be followed and no side shows permitted. Positive.

Posted by TruthWillOut on 11/06/13 at 10:39 PM | #

@ Mason2

You said: “Some of the Judges may have difficulty convicting him based on what i witnessed to day”.  I don’t know how you got this perception, but it is definitely not mine.

As for the judges, I think it’s not entirely correct to say they were al transfixed: one of the woman judges kept staring elsewhere and almost never watched Sollecito al the time he was talking.

Sollecito’s speech itself, actually was not that exciting. It wa so overt that he was focused on portraying himself as a person who is so good and cannot hurt anyone, not the bad guy described in the media, his voice tone was whiny while his arguments were all so specious…

It was actually pathetic and I really can’t imagine how you could make a good impression on judges by emphasizing that you are an Italian and they are too, that before that day you had never planned to commit things so terrible disrespectful to the human life.

Or calling your experience with Knox “true love” (after you explained in your book that it was just easy fun, too easy to be missed, or after you said about Knox that she is “only interested in pleasure”).

Or if you say you are innocent because you belong to an innocent family. and talk about how immaculate your family is (while everybody knows they were investigated for various conspiracies).

I really don’t think how you can convince anyone with things like that…

Posted by Yummi on 11/06/13 at 10:39 PM | #

Thanks Yummi. Others who were in the court who are in touch all agree with you - they dont think RS was as effective as Mason2 did.

Remember RS andf AK both spoke at trial in 2009 - Amanda repeatedly - and the court was always “transfixed” then as well. That had little bearing on a guilty verdict - a unanimous one, of course.

RS is an object of wide dislike in Italy and has been repeatedly challenged on the streets, so any lay judges would tend to stare a bit.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/06/13 at 10:40 PM | #

Is it only my impression or are B & B more professional and patient than were either C & V or Stefanoni?  Or is it that the questions coming from (especially) Crini and Nencini more intelligent and informed?  Both?  Neither?  Any thoughts?

Posted by Stilicho on 11/06/13 at 10:52 PM | #

@ Mason2

You also need to understand that

1) the most important event in today’s court hearing is that judge Nencini declared closed the evidentiary phase of the appeal: the arguments for appeal are over; the appeal is closed. It means it’s decided. Evidence is sufficient.

2) As for the “transfixed” attitude, you need to know that the real and only topic of Sollecito’s statement was himself, who he is, his “true” personality, he begged them to look how good and suffering a boy he is; all this - in a Judge’s eye - the point why it would attract judges’ attention, is not about evidence of guilt but about the penalty they will have to decide.

And believe me, Sollecito was just whiny.

For a big part of his speech he was just putting distance between who he is today and the person he was when he was 20 years old.

He talked about the impossibility of finding a job (the job he would like to have in a corporation, obviously, not just any job) and wanted the judge to project on his condition that one of young Italians who can’t hope to see a future.

After his testimony, while talking with the attorneys about the future court dates, judge Nencini made jokes about holidays in the Bahamas…

Posted by Yummi on 11/06/13 at 10:57 PM | #

@ Stilicho

Not even a remote comparison is possible between Barni & Berti and Conti & Vecchiotti. It’s like two distant universes.

Posted by Yummi on 11/06/13 at 11:00 PM | #

“judge Nencini made jokes about holidays in the Bahamas…”

THAT worries me. A dangerous man in the Bahamas . . . VERY nerdy joke.

Posted by Helder Licht on 11/06/13 at 11:06 PM | #

@ Yummi

” the arguments for appeal are over; the appeal is closed. It means it’s decided. Evidence is sufficient”

You are probably right even though the court has set dates for closing submissions.

Posted by James Raper on 11/06/13 at 11:10 PM | #

@ truthwillout

The porn watching, manga reading, drug using, sex offending, lying, murdering, disgusting excuse for a man…. That’s the RS I focus on right now.

Maybe that the RS the panel are focusing on right now too.

I have faith in the italian justice system, I’m positive they will see through this dirty, rude, offensive little man

Posted by mollythecat on 11/06/13 at 11:12 PM | #

Hi Helder

May not have been about RS. Actually it has been amusing us that where RS was hanging out (in a resort town in the Dominican republic) is known to be a hideout for unsavory characters on the run.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/06/13 at 11:14 PM | #

Thanks Pete, that’s very reassuring.

Posted by Spencer on 11/06/13 at 11:19 PM | #

“You are probably right even though the court has set dates for closing submissions”.

That was on a specific request by the defence. They said they wanted to submit some other expert’s brief, before the formal closure of evidence collection.

That was an object of slight polite jokes, because the judge said ok - he joked on whether the briefs were “possible” as Ghirga called them, of if instead they were actually certain; he winked and said you already wrote them, did not ‘you? if they are ready, he said, then just give them us now.

Ghirga said they needed some days to write them - he had to discuss, a bit amused, because the prosecutor observed he would need some days to read them - so he told the defence “ok we make a gentlemen agreement: you have ten days to write these briefs, but I expect them to be not more than 10% the length of the experts report.

Posted by Yummi on 11/06/13 at 11:29 PM | #


“Yes. But joking about holiday while aiming at life sentences . . . I know: every profession has its own humor/athmosphere but . . .”

This happened after Maresca proposed to shift the prosecution and civil party arguments hearings to December. I didn’t understand who Nencini was talking about, but he suggested he (Crini?) may be already flying to the Bahamas the day they want to set their hearings….

Posted by Yummi on 11/06/13 at 11:37 PM | #

@Yummi:  What about then Stefanoni though?  I thought that she sometimes let Bongiorno get under her skin and she’d come off looking a little petulant.  I don’t see any of that in B & B.

Posted by Stilicho on 11/06/13 at 11:46 PM | #

BTW: in photo one I see no praying but a lawyer plaining for a 17inch laptop. (distributed by Papa S. those two Non Uncle Bill Machines?)

Posted by Helder Licht on 11/06/13 at 11:55 PM | #

Thank you @Yummi, @Mason2, Peter, and all at TJMK keeping us updated on today’s court proceedings. I have faith in Judge Nencini who appears to have admirable control of the courtroom and this process.

@Hopeful, I agree with everything you said. He’s in his element showing off in the courtroom, deluding himself that the judges will be impressed by his impressive self. He and Knox share this trait, but his narcissism is more subtle. Both of them will be perpetual dope-smoking students for as long as their families indulge them. Knox hasn’t even finished her junior year!

@Mollythecat, well said!  I can’t imagine how anyone would be impressed by this sniveling, whining psycho. He’s a cold calculating killer. I don’t speak Italian but his voice is so offputting I can’t imagine native Italians being fooled by his sob story.  He’s too stupid to understand the value of even a fake show of remorse. Yet the only reference to Meredith is that he hardly knew her.

I hope and pray the court gets it right. He needs to go to prison for the rest of his miserable life.

Posted by CaliDeeva on 11/06/13 at 11:59 PM | #

Thank you, Pete and TJMK, for keeping us up-to-date on the trial in Florence. Some days one just doesn’t have the time/patience to wade through everything at PMF. On to justice for Meredith!

Posted by Earthling on 11/07/13 at 12:05 AM | #

@Yummi.  Thank you.

I suppose, thinking about it, someone might say I look ‘transfixed’ staring at AK, or RS, when I watch them in the video clips. But the reason is because I am concentrating, and watching every body language movement, every fleeting micro expression, every change of tone at crucial points, and so on.

I find it necessary to do this, because both have been proven to not tell the truth, therefore I cannot simply listen to their words and trust them.  Obviously, as I wasn’t in the courtroom this is only a guess, but it rather sounds to me that there is a supposition of a ‘guilty’ verdict, and the ‘spontaneous’ speech was actually a plea for mitigation.

Posted by SeekingUnderstanding on 11/07/13 at 12:08 AM | #

@SeekingUnderstanding, I agree wholeheartedly with your explanation of why the judges were eyeballing Sollecito so carefully when he spoke.

Posted by Hopeful on 11/07/13 at 12:30 AM | #

Thank you to Yummi and Mason2 for the court tweets! :D

Re Raffaele’s ‘praying hands’ perhaps he is greeting someone?

That is a standard form of greeting in some cultures e.g. the Thai wai.

Just saying. :D

Posted by thundering on 11/07/13 at 12:55 AM | #


Plea for mitigation: certainly the dogwhistles which native Italian speakers picked up and the absence of substantive content do rather point to that. There is a fit with the subdued demeanor of the lawyers.



A possible form of greeting: well, this is what Sollecito was looking at, an “equal justice” inscription on the wall, so praying or mock praying might be a good bet.


Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/07/13 at 01:15 AM | #

I’d like others’ opinions on the article by Barbie Latza Nadeau on “The Daily Beast.”  I managed to squelch the gag reflex when loading the home page and seeing obKnoxious in her colourful, glamorous, false and temporary glory (a shot from a TV gig), and read the article.

This bit really ticks me off because I thought Nadeau was supposed to be a very good journalist - smart, precise in her writing, and fair.  Is this just sloppiness or has the PR machine had an effect?  See for yourself:

QUOTE:  On Wednesday, the court also heard from a police expert about a spot of DNA on the blade of a knife that had previously not been tested.  The knife, which was considered the murder weapon by the court that convicted Knox and Solllecito, had a small sample of DNA in a tiny groove on the blade that had been attributed to Kercher.  But because the sample was too small to double test and had to be amplified beyond the standard forensic protocols, the appellate court essentially discounted it as the murder weapon.  END QUOTE.

Throughout the article she doesn’t properly reference the temporal context, i.e. the past versus the present, when she cites decisions and actions of “the appellate court”.  The above sounds as if it’s the current, second, new appeal court that trashed the DNA profile of Meredith’s on the large knife, not the first appellate court, the one whose findings were soundly thrown out themselves for sound reasons.


BTW, on the “praying hands”, it fits with a person seeking to appear (AKA pretending) to be: (1) humble, & (2) ‘moral”, in that it’s usually a religious pose (whether Christian or Buddhist, etc.) & people usually conflate overt religious behaviour with exercise of morality.

I see his praying hands gesture as trying to suck up to the judge, and the media et al.  There is no way someone so self-obsessed and deeply disturbed was doing that gesture purely: it was a show.  The same goes for obKnoxious.

P.S.  I don’t remember who came up with obKnoxious on this site, but I love it!  I would cite your intellectual property/authorship, but I can’t recall who you are!  Thanks for the bit of humour that provides.

Posted by all4justice on 11/07/13 at 02:56 AM | #

@ SeekingUnderstanding

“I find it necessary to do this, because both have been proven to not tell the truth, therefore I cannot simply listen to their words and trust them.  Obviously, as I wasn’t in the courtroom this is only a guess, but it rather sounds to me that there is a supposition of a ‘guilty’ verdict, and the ‘spontaneous’ speech was actually a plea for mitigation”.

In my opinion, yes this may be the essence. I don’t think Raffaele is aware about that, or fully aware. But I think the defence are aware of the real function of its speech.

The most striking thing - the most stunning among the latest stunning things, which the Knox-supporters apparently fail to notice - is that Raffaele Sollecito complained in the book and interviews about the fact that the prosecution did not call him to testify in a cross questioning.

And said that what he wanted to do most, was to testify.

And yet now, on this new appeal, now while he is free, what does he do? Dos he request a cross questioning from proscutor Crini?

Does he come to testify?

No. He speaks but he does not testify. He answers no questions.

It is so clear, so blatantly obvious that the defence wants him to speak to the court, but not to testify.

This only fits with their reckoning that giving a speech to the court might benefit him, but a questioning likely would not. That means: a speech addressing the court about himself and his own suffering can only be good, if not about changing their mind about guilt at least about mitigation.

Posted by Yummi on 11/07/13 at 04:46 AM | #

@ Stilicho

“What about then Stefanoni though?  I thought that she sometimes let Bongiorno get under her skin and she’d come off looking a little petulant.  I don’t see any of that in B & B”.

Bu it’s not a comparable situation. The defence basically had no questions for B&B. Bongiorno asked them 4-5 questions overall. Dalla Vedova asked them a dozen.  But they were all easy or silly questions.

Dalla Vedova btw collected a series of own goals, he was stupid and counter produtive and should have better remained silent.

So there was no cross questioning of B&B at all. What they had to say was irrelevant to the evidence set, and the defence had no room, neither any interest in attacking them.

Posted by Yummi on 11/07/13 at 04:53 AM | #

Hi all4justice

Good catch in the Daily Beast. It’s very misleading writing but at the same time check the post above, Barbie was really busy today and the deadline must have been incredibly tough.

It seems hard for people less informed than we are to grasp that Hellmann was actually annulled (a very rare event); Cassation was highly critical of C&V but their comeuppance has to happen in another court.

We’ll have a post trying to round up all the reports which “misunderstood” the key point that Meredith’s DNA on the blade still stands. That may be more impactful than chipping away at them one by one.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/07/13 at 05:32 AM | #

I think there is some confusion about the amplification process. Let me try to explain in general terms (not perfect scientifically) without gross mistakes.

Every cycle of DNA amplification increases the concentration by a factor of 2. The amplification is usually measured by the number of times the cycle of duplication has been performed.

10 cycles of duplication means about 1000 times (2^10) amplification. Usually we need to carry out something like 30 cycles (2^30) or about a billion times amplification. The exact number will depend on the initial amount of the DNA we started with.

In low template (low concentration of DNA) we need to do more amplification- or about 32-33-34 times (instead of 25-30; the common range). This is not much. However, whenever we are doing large amount of amplification, we need to be careful about contamination etc. Just like a radio sounds nice when the volume control is in the middle range but the noise gets in when you turn it up to the maximum. In other words, the radio design was optimized for the sound in the middle range of volume control.

The same kits are used but the decision about the number of cycles of amplification is basically made by the operator. In most labs, these machines are run by students or professional operators.

Posted by chami on 11/07/13 at 05:55 AM | #

“32. Sollecito finishes by thanking judges for their time, judge tells him he can intervene any time during rest of appeal until they deliberate”

My take on subtext of the above item:

Judge Nencini speaking to Sollecito, to Sollecito’s Counsel, and to Sollecito’s family - Now Hear This.

On January 10th, 2014 we will Deliberate and find Sollecito Guilty. If Sollecito provided a mitigating-factor, that factor could shorten an otherwise very lengthy term of imprisonment.

A Sollecito confession would be a mitigating-factor.

If Sollecito confesses before we deliberate on January 10th, 2014, this may shorten our sentence. If not it will be too late.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 11/07/13 at 07:05 AM | #

Cardiol & Yummi…thank you.

Love Judge Nencini’s super-logical, minimalist approach…

Posted by SeekingUnderstanding on 11/07/13 at 11:17 AM | #


Interesting, thank you. Judges coded pronouncements would normally pass me by - that sounds like a very good observation.

Posted by Odysseus on 11/07/13 at 12:10 PM | #

The dog that didnt bark! Yummi channeling Sherlock Holmes makes a great point, that RS once again didnt subject himself to cross-examination on the stand, which if innocent was his last best bet.

Cardiol’s take rings true in light of RS’s absnece of a bark. That this was a sentence mitigation statement, encouraged by RS’s lawyers and father. And that Judge Nencini hopes he will bark just a little bit.

RS himself may still hold out some hope and so he doesnt skip may not be being told the worst.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/07/13 at 02:23 PM | #

Sollecito says he damn well didn’t do it and he wants his <s>knife</s>life back

Posted by Odysseus on 11/07/13 at 02:25 PM | #

Update about Frank Sfarzo from Machiavelli (Yummi)

Update on Frank Sfarzo, from Machiavelli:

“Frank Sfarzo asked for a short track trial. This entitles for penalty mitigation, but no reduction of damage payment. Hearing on Dec. 6”

“I’m talking about his aggravated defamation case in Florence.”

Posted by Ergon on 11/07/13 at 03:13 PM | #

Quote from the ‘Daily Mirror’ today 7/11/13

‘Earlier the court had heard from two forensic experts who confirmed that a 30cm knife found in sollecitos home and said to be the murder weapon had no genetic trace of meredith on it’

This is another example of very bad journalism. Trouble is, people read, and actually believe the nonesense.

I’m not sure how many people read this rag, but it annoys me how the gutter press can get away with falsehoods.

Posted by mollythecat on 11/07/13 at 03:45 PM | #

Hi Yummi and Ergon

Thanks a lot. Yes Frank Szforza folds. The Breaking News box at the top says it quick. We know you will have much more coming for a post.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/07/13 at 03:57 PM | #

Frank Sfarzo asked for a short track trial. Just like RG, right?

Intersting news. It says a lot. He still has some sense left. Unlike the big kid with a knife!

For many people, it is not sufficient to remind them about the rule of law. They do not believe it because they have rarely seen it. They have only heard about it in some abstract way. If they have experienced it, they have explained it away as a incidental damage. How they can believe something that they have never experienced?

Do you now see the similarity between RS and FS?

Raf and Frank are antipodes in social structures. But when it comes, they are very similar. One thinks that law does not exist and the other thinks that it does not apply to him.

Sad but true.

Court houses are majestic structures. They terrorize with their grandness. This one is no exception. And this is by design and with a purpose. When you enter, you feel small and insignificant.

It had same effect on both Frank and Raf. The effect manifested differently but the cause is the same. The great fear!

I know people will be laughing but they (RS and Frank) have already been mortally wounded. Everything else is just pretention.

Posted by chami on 11/07/13 at 05:33 PM | #

Yummi posted various important comments up above last night which help to understand what is going on. Here is a possibility with Yummi’s points in mind.

First note two things that Yummi notes that Sollecito DIDNT do:

1) He did not get on the stand to be cross-examined, he spoke only from the floor, which not all jurors like.

2) What he did say didnt get into the guts of the evidence; it was mainly to say to them look, he is a normal guy.

Both seem biased much more toward mitigating the eventual sentence rather than avoiding a guilty verdict which must come first.

The defense lawyers are said to fear that the Carabinieri report etc have left them cooked; they may not say that so bluntly to the two, but they want to get the best deal for the two that they can.

Judge Nencini presumably sees all of this and more. He hinted to RS that more talk from him might be a good idea. Yanking his passport might not be the best way to build trust.

After yesterday I’d say it is more possible that AK might now turn up too. She spoke quite effectively twice at the Hellmann appeal.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/07/13 at 09:34 PM | #

I agree, Peter. It is in the best interest of AK that she should show her face in the court!

There are three advantages in that:

1. Keep RS drifting away from her. I think it is a very serious and important aspect.

2. Instead of challenging the evidences and blaming the others, she can just keep on saying that I am an all American girl… just like…

It is going to work at least at a subconscious level.

3. The focus will shift from the judges to her. It is a great tactical advantage.

Don’t forget that Judges and Juries are also made of flesh and bones…

Only problem with my suggestions is that the role of the Marriottes is eliminated…

Posted by chami on 11/08/13 at 05:59 AM | #

RE: Only problem with my suggestions is that the role of the Marriottes is eliminated…

They are “Marionettes”  for sure!

Posted by chrrypi on 11/08/13 at 09:39 PM | #

Sollecito’s 40 min speech at his Florence Appeal may well have been not only Not-Mitigating, but affirmatively Aggravating his offensive conduct, and prolonging his final SCC sentence-period.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 11/09/13 at 04:44 PM | #

Hi Cardiol.

Yes there was again that patronising “catch me if you can” arrogance to RS’s statement which time and again has brought down other perps in other jury rooms.

Judge Nencini seems to be enticing solid grounds for some sentence mitigation (Judge Massei used the blanket over Meredith etc to suggest some humanity might have been prevalent).

But right now, in light of media statements, the two books, Knox’s non-payment of Patrick, and RS’s patronising new statement, they look depraved and dangerous, and Judge Nencini looks empty-handed.

If AK does turn up, to actually help herself, she would need not to mirror this arrogance.


It is a pity Kathleen Gadaloff proved unable to reflect this. She and her daughter Lisa D’Arrigo are now posting wild claims about us elsewhere. But in fact we did everything we could to help her.

When she said she wanted to be there but had recently broken a leg and would not be able to wait in any line outside a courtroom, we went to some lengths to convince the Florence authorities to give her a press pass so she could walk in and out at any time.

We sent her examples of Stewart Homes’ various very detailed reports from the courtroom in 2009 as a model to follow. But puzzlingly we never got much back, except a couple of tweets from the first two appeal sessions and a brief interview with Dr Mignini. You can see from the post above where most of our reporting had to come from.

We are now told by those who encountered her that her Italian was insufficient to follow what was going on and she had to ask other people. She didnt appear to them to have been in a courtroom before, or to understand how encyclopaedic the evidence is, or how to read a jury. She was fairly agitated.

Yummi set the court record straight above in his own comments: the well coiffed RS did not in fact hit a home run, and no-one who could understand him was thinking so. Minutes after Yummi posted, Lisa D’Arrigo posted a very long, angry confused comment which we hid, not least to help her mother, about us all getting it wrong and how they are all vampires feasting on blood.

Most who read and post here are professionals, and it isnt vampire talk that attracts or persuades them.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/10/13 at 04:10 PM | #
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