Monday, June 27, 2011

Rudy Guede For The First Time Sort Of Accuses Knox And Sollecito Face To Face

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1. Potentially A Huge Day

Tension was really fraught. Everybody involved in the appeal and everybody watching in Italy knew this could be THE day.

Guede had recently lost his final Cassation appeal and in a very hard-line ruling Knox & Sollecito had also been associated with the crime.

He was at this appeal hearing as a prosecution witness, because he had written a letter to the prosecution heatedly denying the claims of a former cellmate, Alessi, that he had said Knox and Sollecito did not attack Meredith with him, another two had.

With seeming nothing to lose, Guede could both deny Alessi’s claim and definitively point the finger of blame at the pair, and thus all three would remain locked up for many years.

2. How The Day Actually Went

Despite a turbulent day in court this was not a shapeshifter event. The problem was that Guede was far too nervous to testify.

He is not normally nervous, but it is rumored that the name of Sollecito’s mafioso Uncle Rocco might have been been whispered in his ear.

So his prison letter was read out for him by the prosecution, and it did include this.

This splendid, marvelous girl was killed by Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox.

Then Sollecito lawyer Bongiorno grew increasingly frustrated in attempting a cross-examination, and Guede ended up barely saying a word. The letter alone is rather diminished evidence.

3. Duncan Kennedy for The BBC

See this on the BBC website by Duncan Kennedy.

Amanda Knox and her ex-boyfriend did kill Meredith Kercher, a man who was also convicted of the 21-year-old’s murder has told an appeal court.

After Rudy Guede confirmed he believed the US student killed her British housemate, Knox jumped to her feet saying she was “shocked and anguished”.

The hearing in Perugia is the first time that all three defendants have given evidence on the same day.

Knox, 23, and Raffaele Sollecito, 26, are appealing their convictions.
Child killer

Miss Kercher, of Coulsdon, Surrey, was found with her throat cut at her Perugia flat after what prosecutors claimed was a sex game taken to the extreme.

Knox is serving a 26-year sentence for Miss Kercher’s murder while her Italian co-defendant and ex-boyfriend, Sollecito, was sentenced to 25 years.

Guede told the court that claims by a fellow prison inmate that he thought Knox and Sollecito were innocent were not true. He said he never made that claim to the inmate.

On 18 June, convicted child killer Mario Alessi told the appeal Guede had confided that Knox and Sollecito were innocent.

According to Alessi, Guede said he and a friend went to the house Miss Kercher shared with Knox with the intent of having sex with Miss Kercher and that when she refused, the scene turned violent and his unnamed accomplice slit her throat.

Drug-dealer Guede was jailed for 30 years for the sexual assault and murder of Miss Kercher after a separate fast-track trial. His sentence was reduced to 16 years on appeal.

Guede was in the witness stand as a letter he had written in response to Alessi’s claims was read to the court on Monday.

“This splendid, marvellous girl was killed by Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox,” the letter said.

Guede has previously admitted being in the house at the time of the murder, but denies involvement in Miss Kercher’s death.

After cross-examination by the defence, Guede said he had always believed Sollecito and Knox were behind the murder.

“I’ve always said who was there in that house on that cursed night,” he told the court.

Knox stood up after Guede’s evidence and denied his claims.

“The only time that Rudy Guede, Raffaele and I were in the same space has been in court. I’m shocked and anguished.

“He knows we weren’t there and have nothing to do with it,” she said.

Sollecito said Guede was always talking “about a shadow that could be me and a voice that could be Amanda’s… we’ve been fighting shadows for four years. Our lives have been destroyed in a subtle and absurd way.”

Speaking before Monday’s hearing, Knox’s mother Edda Mellas told reporters she hoped that Guede would have the “integrity to stand up and tell the truth”.

She said her daughter was “always very anxious and nervous but I think she’s glad things are moving along. She feels things are going well,” but that it is, “hard to get too hopeful, especially after the first trial.”

Two other witnesses were called to counter claims made by another defence witness, a member of the Mafia named Luciano Aviello, who had told the court earlier this month that his brother - who is on the run - had killed Miss Kercher during a botched burglary.

The two witnesses - two inmates at the same prison as Aviello - testified that Aviello had said he had been contacted by Sollecito’s defence team to stir up confusion in the trial in exchange for money.

Witness Alexander Ilicet said Aviello had wanted the money for a sex-change operation.

4. Andrea Vogt For The Seattle PI

See this in the report in the Seattle PI by Andrea Vogt.

As if the appeal wasn’t bizarre enough, two convicts were called by the prosecution as counter witnesses Monday to contradict several inmates called by the defense earlier this month.

They maintained they had overheard in prison conversations about a plot among other inmates to testify in exchange for money and benefits, such as reduced prison time.

The person they heard was arranging things, they said, was Sollecito’s attorney, Giulia Bongiorno, who heads up Italy’s parliamentary justice committee.

She forcefully denied the corruption accusations in the break afterwards and vowed to file charges and take legal action against her accusers.

One claim by the inmates was that Bongiorno offered a sex change operation to Luciano Aviello. It would be helpful if some of this if it exists emerged on tape. What possible reason would they have to lie?

5. And So To The Bottom Line

Along with Judge Hellman’s increasingly evident bias, and the smoke being blown over the DNA, and the Sollecitos and Bongiorno not (at least not yet) investigated by the judge for alleged witness bribes, not to mention Uncle Rocco’s power to alarm even by whispered mention of his name, the Knox and Sollecito defenses are down, but not yet for the count.

6. And A Footnote On The Kabuki Dance

This for the first time on Guede’s side (but not on Knox’s or Sollecito’s side) crosses a public boundary between the three.

The Italian lawyer Cesare Beccaria explained it thus..

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Comments

In Knox’s statement today she said “I don’t know what happened that night”. Another 360 degree turn from her when she named Patrick Lumumba as the killer several years ago. She seemed quite certain what happened that night when implicating him back then….but now she is uncertain again…...

Knox continues to show her complete unreliability as a witness to the court - and now can only offer the “I don’t know what happened” line as a defense.

A solid alibi from them both is still missing from todays events.

Posted by gabster1971 on 06/27/11 at 05:56 PM | #

Ouch! Another blow for the defence after last week fiasco!

And yet her mother is still saying that “she feels things are going well”!!!

Is she just being desperately hopeful or is she on drugs?

Posted by tempusfugit on 06/27/11 at 06:18 PM | #

I was just watching CNN News when an item concerning todays trial was briefly reported. It would seem now that they are starting to concentrate upon the Italian Supreme Court of appeal.

In other words the last one available. It looks like from the CNN comments that they have given up on this one although the elusive DNA stands as being the last great hope.

Unfortunatly as regards the testing, if there is insufficient then the court will simply revert to the original findings.

Also interesting, but not surprising, are the alleged jailhouse bribes that have gone on since Sollecito’s family are well connected with enough money to at least make an offer.

Very dangerous though, if you deal with criminals then expect to get shafted. The criminal element will most likely play both sides of the fence to see who comes up with the best deal.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 06/27/11 at 06:19 PM | #

The Sollecito family are of course already on trial for taped phone calls about trying to lean on (bribe?) politicians and officials to have the Perugia investigation team changed. This is not good news for them assuming (of course!) that they knew nothing about it.

The Supreme Court has been very hard line. It has shown zero interest in bending to the PR campaign.

Knox people like to claim it “threw her first confession out because the police transgressed her human rights” but REALLY it merely disallowed the first one because a lawyer was not present at her witness interview (no lawyer needed to be) and it allowed the second “confession” in that Knox gave - in writing.

This 80,000 pound gorilla still looms. It is not just Guede that re-surfaces. Thanks to the Supreme Court it is all of that pesky baggage as well.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 06/27/11 at 06:29 PM | #

been following twitter where certain tweeters proclaim how Rudy is a convicted murderer….hello! where were they last week when the baby killer testified??

Posted by mojo on 06/27/11 at 09:26 PM | #

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Where next:

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Or to next entry 30-Plus Minute Video By Perugia’s Umbria24 TV Of Rudy Guede In The Courtroom

Or to previous entry If Rudy Guede Testifies On Monday As He Might, It Could Be Game Over For Sollecito And Knox