Sunday, October 31, 2010

Corruption Of Appeal: Angry Top Criminal Judge Chiari Is Blatantly Forced Aside

Posted by Peter Quennell

Umbria’s top criminal judge Sergio Matteini Chiari

Very Dirty Business

Only one month ago Umbria’s top criminal judge Sergio Matteini Chiari was to preside.

Now a very angry Judge Chiari has been forced aside with no public explanation from Chief Judge De Nunzio [image below] as to why.

A wildly wrongly qualified judge, Hellmann, a business judge with just two criminal trials in his past, both fiascos, mysteriously takes his place.

Rumors of foul play are appearing in the Italian media. Has Chief Judge De Nunzio been leaned upon politically? Do big bucks or rogue masons have any role in this?

Disastrous New Judge

Andrea Vogt includes this on the change of judges in another excellent report.

PERUGIA, Italy—As grieving family members mourn the third anniversary of Meredith Kercher’s murder, Italian court officials have changed the judge who will preside over the appeal of her convicted killer, Amanda Knox, just weeks before the highly anticipated trial is set to begin….  In Umbria, the last-minute shuffling of magistrates in one of Italy’s most high-profile international cases has some wondering what kind of behind-the-scenes maneuvering might be happening on the eve of Knox’s Nov. 24 appeal.

Legal observers in Perugia… maintain the change of magistrates from Sergio Matteini Chiari to Claudio Pratillo Hellmann was simply an “internal administrative issue.”

Matteini Chiari, a judge who prosecuted the controversial Andreotti appeals trial over the mafia murder of an Italian journalist, is apparently in line to head the juvenile court. Knox’s attorney Luciano Ghirga referred to both judges as “respected and experienced.”

The new judge [Hellmann] assigned to Knox’s case is no stranger to allegations of judicial error. In fact, he was one of three judges who, in 2000, overturned a controversial conviction in the stabbing murder of Cinzia Bruno, setting free a man who had been jailed for more than seven years.

Bruno’s husband, Massimo Pisano, was convicted along with his lover in the stabbing death of Bruno, who was found in 1993 on the banks of the Tiber River, near Rome. He was sentenced to life in prison, a ruling upheld in all three phases of Italian court process, including the Supreme Court.

Then, a “revision” of the case by a three-man court of appeals panel, including Pratillo Hellman, freed Pisano after he had already served seven years, six months and 12 days behind bars.

The Bruno case is, of course, no indicator of how Pratillo Hellman might approach Knox’s case. However, it shows a willingness to go against the judicial grain that is likely to please hopeful Knox supporters.

The new judge’s initial approach to the case will become clear on the very first day of the trial, when he will have to decide a variety of issues, such as whether or not witnesses and evidence should be reheard or introduced.

Prepare for a “messy” appeal at best?



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