Saturday, January 12, 2013

How Much To Place Blame On Guede? IMMENSE Headache For RS & AK Teams

Posted by Cardiol MD

[Photo by Andrea Vogt as in December 2010 Supreme Court decides that Rudy Guede didnt act alone]

Zero To 100% Guede Was Claimed Sole Attacker

On a scale of 0% to 100% how much of the blame for the crime against Meredith has been heaped on Rudy Guede?

Well, it certainly varies. In trial court and first-appeal court it was never ever 100%.

Seemingly very scared of the harm Guede could do to their clients, if they provoked him into telling all, defense lawyers have acted consistently since 2008 and more-so since December 2010 as if they walk on eggshells around him.

In fact among the defendants and their teams only ONCE was Guede ever blamed 100%. 

Sollecito’s bizarrely-titled Honor Bound 2012 book, the factually unchecked one, which now is causing him and his defense team so much trouble, was the first instance ever among those accused to try to blame Guede for the crime 100%.

Our next post will look at the categoric claims against Guede by whoever wrote that book. Meanwhile, here and now, let’s start at the beginning.

Commencing from when they were arrested, Amanda Knox pointed decisively at a black man, but of course she pointed at the wrong one: Patrick Lumumba. Make that 0% . Not long after they were arrested, Knox and Sollecito were strongly questioning the role of one another. So 100% against each other, but still a zero against Mr Guede.

In his messages from Germany Guede blamed two hasty intruders though he had no choice but to say he was there. Perhaps 33% at this point.  After Guede was captured, Sollecito implied that they were at the crime scene together because he was worried that Guede would implicate him. Make that 50%.

At Guede’s short-form trial In October 2008, Judge Micheli blamed Guede 33% too. In sending Knox and Sollecito to full trial he dismissed the lone wolf theory (never really to be revived in court again) and he tentatively believed the evidence pointed to their being equally guilty.

In fact Judge Micheli tentatively blamed Knox for instigating both the attack on Meredith and the rearrangement of the crime scene.  In effect he allocated 50% of the blame to Amanda Knox and 25% each to Guede and Sollecito. 

Throughout trial in 2009 the Knox and Sollecito defense teams seemed to take great care not ever to blame Guede 100%, perhaps because (for murky reasons not made public) Rudy Guede had refused to testify against their clients.

Judge Massei assigned Guede 33% of the blame as he concluded that Guede had initiated the attack but that Knox and Sollecito had wielded the knives and that one of them had struck the final blow. 

During trial and thereafter, the defense lawyers for the three were often on Italian TV and as our main poster the Italian lawyer Cesare Beccaria exhaustively charted in a four-part series, each “gently” blamed the other two.

We can assume that is either 33% or 50% but never more than that.

On February 24. 2011, in the Supreme Court report, on its rejection of Guede’s final appeal of his sentence for involvement in killing Meredith, blamed Rudy Guede and two others equally. Some 33% of the blame each.

The Supreme Court relied upon three facts: the physical evidence of Guede’s presence at the flat, Guede’s actual admission of his presence, and Guede’s implicit admission of shared-guilt in his documented Skype InstaMessage to Giacomo Benedetti on Nov. 19, 2007 (“I was scared that they would say I was the only guilty person”).

In a nutshell, the situation at the start of the Sollecito and Knox appeal before Judges Hellmann and Zanetti in 2011 was this:

  • The Supreme Court had decided that Rudy Guede acting ALONE could not have attacked Meredith with several knives over an estimated 15 minutes, left so little physical evidence upon her, staged the break-in via the absurd route of Filomena’s window while leaving zero DNA in her room, placed Sollecito’s DNA on Meredith’s bra clasp, engineered several traces of Knox’s and Sollecito’s footprints outside the room, and placed the mixed DNA of Meredith and Knox in several different locations outside Meredith’s locked door.
  • But there remains zero evidence that perps two and three which the physical evidence strongly pointed to were anyone other than Knox and Sollecito. There’s really not one speck of hard evidence to the contrary. Defenses somewhat desperately tried to engineer some at first appeal from the seemingly perjured testimony of jailbirds Alessi and Aviello and some smoke-blowing over the DNA testing, but in terms of HARD evidence came up empty-handed. Alessi did a meltdown on the stand, while Aviello turned completely cuckoo, and Judges Hellmann and Zanetti had to invent arguments frantically to dig Knox and Sollecito out of that hole.

I have done a series of posts (to be read from the bottom upward) on the Hellmann-Zanetti outcome covering many other aspects of their strange arguments.

Back in late 2010 some of us at TJMK were impressed at the alacrity with which Judge Hellman selected Conti and Vecchiotti.

We were thinking that “he had already thought it all out” [we seem to have got that-much right], and that he was “being prudently responsive to the legal and political pressures bearing down on him, and knows the ruling also calls the defendants’ bluff.”

I had posted that the defenses of Knox and Sollecito seemed to be trying to exclude evidence that they themselves tried to destroy, essentially on the grounds that their destructive attempts failed to destroy all of it, and left behind only some of it.  Their argument had boiled down to whether the disputed DNA evidence is more unfairly prejudicial than probative.

It was my opinion that because it was the defendants’ deliberate conduct that nearly succeeded in extinguishing all their DNA, any US and UK courts would admit this highly relevant evidence, and let the participants duke out its fairness, in open court, in front of a jury.

I had thought that was what the Massei Court had already done, and was what the Hellmann/Zanetti court was then doing. The Hellmann/Zanetti court was doing that - but that was not all it was doing, as we now know and regret.

I had believed that the defendants would bitterly regret their petition for such DNA Expert-Opinion Review.  We should know in March 2013 if they regret it at all, let alone “˜bitterly’. So far they may not, but Sollecito’s current venture into special-pleading journalism in his book seems likely to accelerate their journey to a bitter and regretted destiny.

We were less impressed with how Judge Zanetti started the appeal hearings.

To his eternal discredit Judge Zenetti uttered words to the effect that “the only thing that is “˜certain’ in Meredith’s case is that Meredith is dead.” Nothing else. In effect, illegally promising a whole new trial at appeal level - very much frowned on by the Supreme Court.

Unless the word “˜thing’ is a mistranslation, that is not the only thing that was already certain in Meredith’s Case; Many Things were then certain in her case. 

For example, it is certain that the first-ever documented references to Meredith’s scream just before she was killed had already come both from the mouth of Amanda Knox herself, and from the hand of Amanda Knox, in the case of her contemporaneous personal hand-written notes.

Guede, himself, had certainly already made a documented reference to Meredith’s scream.

It was also certain that Guede had made documented references to his actual presence when Meredith screamed.

Some of these already-certain facts inconveniently undermined Hellmann’s and Zanetti’s already-assumed conclusions, so they then proceeded in-turn to undermine the “˜reliability’ of those facts, e.g. “˜it is not certain that the scream was Meredith’s scream; it could have been someone-else’s scream’; or even Amanda’s scream?

The Massei court had exhaustively presented the evidence from all sources in their conclusion that Knox and Sollecito were the ones who shared Guede’s guilt. But Hellmann/Zanetti then contradicted ALL the previous finders-of-fact with regard to Guede, essentially using five ploys in arguing:

  • That Guede was Unreliable: “for example, in the questioning before the Prosecutor, he denies being known by the nickname of Baron, “¦.so as to result in a version completely incompatible with the reality of the facts as perceived and heard…” [Is that ever giving birth to a mouse?], and
  • That the Supreme Court had “held Rudy Guede to be an Unreliable person”, and
  • That “therefore, among the evidence against the two accused, the testimony given at the hearing of June 27, 2011 by Rudy Guede cannot be included because it is Unreliable, nor can the contents of the letter written by him and sent to his lawyers”, and
  • That concerning Guede’s documented Skype InstaMessage to Giacomo Benedetti on Nov. 19, 2007 “”¦ the contents of the chat between Rudy Guede and his friend Giacomo Benedetti on the day of November 19,  2007,  also listened to by the Police,  can be considered in favour of the two accused”, because “he would not have had any reason to keep quiet about such a circumstance,”
  • And that “So, in the course of that chat with his friend….. Rudy Guede does not indicate in any way Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito as the perpetrators…..” and “.....he would not have had any reason to keep quiet about such a circumstance….. he being…. certainly the perpetrator….. of the crimes carried out in via della Pergola, that if Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito had also participated, that he would at that moment have revealed this to his friend.”

So, summarising Hellmann and Zanetti, they have absurdly argued a contradiction:

  • Because of Guedes notoriously unreliability, the public evidence in which he did accuse Knox and Sollecito cannot be considered as evidence of their guilt, but
  • In spite of Guede’s notorious unreliability, because Guede did not accuse Knox and Sollecito in a private conversation this must be considered as conclusive evidence of their innocence.

We are not the audience to which Dr Galati’s appeal against Hellmann and Zanetti to the Supreme Court is directed. Most of us probably have some difficulty with its legalese, translated into English, so bear with it.

Dr Galati’s appeal against Hellmann and Zanetti refers to Guede’s documented Skype InstaMessage to Giacomo Benedetti on Nov. 19, 2007 as follows:

The Hellmann/Zanetti court, “has”¦ made “¦. completely anomalous use of the Skype call, accepting it for the time of Kercher’s death, but not for other circumstances which are also extremely relevant for judgment purposes, but which have been totally ignored.

In fact, in the call, Guede recounts having heard Meredith complaining about her missing money and of her intention of asking Ms Knox, with whom she had quarrelled, for an explanation (p. 10 of the call [transcript]), of having seen Meredith look in vain for the missing money in her drawer (p. 18), then of having seen Meredith look, still in vain, for her missing money in Amanda’s room (pp. 18-19 of the call [transcript]), and of having heard a girl enter the house, who could have been one of the roommates, thus Amanda (p. 11 of the call [transcript]), while the Ivorian found himself in the bathroom, just before hearing Meredith’s terrible scream which would have caused him [59] to exit the bathroom, about five minutes after the girl’s ingress (p 12 of the call [transcript])”... .

The Court has, in practice, without reason thrown the responsibility onto Guede for throwing the rock and clambering in (see pp 121-122 of the appealed judgment): in the same Skype call, Guede, however, repeatedly denies having seen the broken window in Romanelli’s room during the whole time in which he was in the house at Via della Pergola on that evening (pp 8, 20, 34 of the call [transcript]). Not only that: Rudy Guede also said that he was at Knox’s many times”› (pp 88 of the call [transcript]).

If the Court held the Ivorian citizen to be sincere in the tele-conversation with his friend Benedetti, then why not also believe him when he denies having broken in, or when he recounts Meredith having it out with Amanda, or when he says that he had been at the latter’s place many times”›?

Dr Galati’s appeal to the Supreme Court argues that the Hellmann/Zanetti appeal judgment, apart from being manifestly illogical, is manifestly contradictory with respect to the contents of the case file referred to (Article 606(e) Criminal Procedure Code). Here is what it says about their tortured interpretations of Rudy Guede.

And in the Skype call with Benedetti, intercepted unbeknownst to him, there emerge circumstances that confirm Guede’s court declarations. The Court takes the Skype call with his friend Benedetti into examination, valuing it “šin favour of the two accused”› both for what it does not say and also for what it does say, and this it does building from one, not only unexplained, datum but which would have taken little to deny: since Rudy was outside of Italy, he was in some sense safe”› and thus could well have been able to tell the whole truth (p 40 of the judgment).

Not in the least does the Court depart from the presupposition that in this call Rudy would have been telling the truth and, because in this call he would not have named the current defendants, these have got nothing to do with the homicide. The Court does not explain, though, that even in this call Rudy was tending to downplay his responsibility and, if he had named his co-participants, that would have easily allowed, by means of investigations and subsequent interviews, the bringing out of his causal contribution and of his responsibility.

[91] Of the things said in this Skype call, the Court seems at one moment to want to value the chronological datum from 9:00 PM to 9:30 PM to affirm that this would therefore have been the time of death of Meredith; successively, though the appeal judges, following the principle of plausible hypothesis, in relation to the outgoing calls on the victim’s English handset, have moved it to 10:15 PM, but they have not altered the reliability of the time indicated by Guede.

In truth, during the course of the conversation, Rudy recounts having heard Meredith complain about the missing money and of her intention to ask Knox, with whom she had argued, for an explanation (p 10 of the call); of having seen Meredith look in vain for the missing money in her drawer (see p 18); of having seen her search, again in vain, for the missing money in Amanda’s room (pp 18 and 19 of the call) and of having heard a girl enter the house ““ who must have been one of the flatmates, thus Amanda (p 11 of the call), ““ while he was in the bathroom, a little before hearing Meredith’s terrible scream which would have induced him to exit the bathroom, about five minutes after the ingress of the girl (p 12 of the call).

And also, on the subject of the break-in in Romanelli’s room ““ thrown without explanation onto Guede’s back (see the judgment being appealed from, at pp 121 and 122) ““ can remarks by the Ivorian citizen be found in the transcription of the intercept. Guede repeatedly denies having seen the broken window in Romanelli’s room for the whole time in which he was in the house at Via della Pergola that evening (pp 8, 20, 34 of the call).

If the [Appeal Court] had held as reliable what Rudy narrated in the Skype call relating to the time in which Meredith was killed, it supplies no reason at all, on the other hand, for why it does not believe him as well when he denies [92] having committed the break-in or when he recounts the quarrel of Meredith with Amanda.”

None of this changes my own beliefs that there are even many more things in evidence that are “˜beyond any reasonable doubt’.  For example:

  • It is beyond any reasonable doubt that Meredith was restrained by hands other than the knife-wielding hand(s); and that Meredith was restrained by the hands of two, or three persons as she was killed.
  • It is beyond any reasonable doubt that steps were taken to clean away smears made by Meredith’s blood in the place where she was killed, and tracks of Meredith’s blood transferred by her killers to other places.
  • It is beyond any reasonable doubt that steps were also taken to simulate a break-in that never-was.

In the next post, we examine Dr Galati’s appeal further and the strident claims against Guede made in Sollecito’s own book which contradict some of the positions of HIS OWN LAWYERS. Note that Dr Galati has argued in the appeal that it was ILLEGAL for Hellmann and Zanetti not to have taken the Supreme Court’s ruling on three perps fully into account and having innored it or brushed past it. 

Verrrry tough situation for defense counsel to be in.


We’re getting to the business end of this. 

They’re getting caught in a pincers movement now and the books will certainly not help them - just whom were they trying to convince and what relevance does that have in Italy, except negatively towards them?

It seems a crazed strategy.

Posted by James Higham on 01/12/13 at 10:05 PM | #

Hi James,

Frank Sforza faces two court hearings in two different countries. I expect his next stay in the slammer will be significantly longer than his previous ones. The likes of Doug Preston, Nina Burleigh, Doug Longhini, Candace Dempsey, Joel Simon and Nina Ognianova could face legal action for their defamatory comments which were based on Frank’s fairy tale.

Sollecito will almost certainly face legal action for comments he made in his book. His legal problems won’t end there either. The Italian Supreme Court will invalidate Hellman’s verdict and the case will be sent back to the appeal court.

I fully expect the next judge to accept the prosecution’s request to have the remaining DNA on the blade tested. If Meredith’s DNA is identified again - and I think it will be - Knox’s chances of avoiding extradition will be reduced dramatically. This case isn’t over.

Posted by The Machine on 01/12/13 at 11:44 PM | #

The scream: first reported by AK and subsequently confirmed by others. Tough to deny and best to paper over!

RG psychology: I agree that he is utterly unreliable: he is trying to protect some criminal but for obscure reasons. OTOH, AK is most reliable because she has consistently told lies (if lies are always consistent, they become the TRUTH).

The money: Nobody throws away money and AK still has to explain her bank deposit after the crime. IIRC, RG was travelling without ticket! RS needs no money as he has a semi-infinite source via his papa!

The breakup: A minor scratch on the window pane has been attributed to the rock; I believe it is possible to figure out from a careful examination of the mark left by the stone whether the rock was thrown from the inside or outside.

The PR Machine: The 2M USD campaign was started because (i) they have no faith in the system (ii) they know this is the only way to save a criminal and (iii) if a lie is repeated 100 times it becomes the truth.

The DNA: I am yet to see an unbiased expert opinion on this as of today!

The Golden Rule: He who has the gold, makes the rule

Posted by chami on 01/13/13 at 05:48 AM | #


To his eternal discredit he uttered words to the effect that “the only thing that is ‘certain’ in Meredith’s case is that Meredith is dead.”

To his great credit, he is also reported to have said that “the real truth could be different”

Coming from a judge, it is certainly getting curiouser and curiouser.

I know truth comes in various shapes and sizes and colours, but then…

Posted by chami on 01/13/13 at 06:06 AM | #

Hi Chami.

Your first line concerns the opening remark made by Zanetti, Cardiol said that, but I misinterpreted one of our Italian lawyers and credited it to Hellmann, now corrected.

And yes Hellmann did say after the closing that the real truth could be different. (We have a TV satirist here, Steven Colbert, who gets a lot of laughs giving examples of politicians’ “truthiness”, google that and you will see!)

But also at the opening Hellmann in fact made a remark to HIS great discredit that under reasonable doubt the appeal court could address anything it wants. Galati in the Supreme Court appeal then argued that the scope of the Hellmann appeal court was in fact illegally wide.

However clumsy in Italian law we think the H&Z appeal court was, it always turns out to be worse! Galati is incredibly tough but (as noted several times in the past on PMF) under Italian law could have been even tougher.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 01/13/13 at 02:05 PM | #

“The only certain and undisputed fact is the death of Meredith Kercher”. These were the actual words according to Follain.

At the time that these words were reported I simply regarded them as a generic statement of the appeal court’s commitment to impartiality and a rigorous evaluation. A “blank slate” statement, as it were, or alternatively a “no comment” statement on previous verdicts. Intended as re-assurance for the appellants.

Nothing particularly wrong in that, I thought, but then there was the nagging doubt (which I think everyone would have shared with me) about the emphasis and choice of words, given that the judges must have read and considered all the paperwork beforehand so that they could scarcely be said to be starting with a blank slate.

In fact, of course, there were a lot of certain and undisputed facts.

No one denied that there was evidence, most of it undisputed. What was disputed was the interpretation of that evidence.

Had Hellmann (presumably the remark came from him as presiding judge) said instead that it was the court’s function to settle any remaining disputes on fact, and to review the trial court’s interpretation, due regard being given to any additional evidence emerging during the course of the appeal, that would have been acceptable.

What actually happened (and virtually no new evidence emerged) beggared belief, so much so that it was clear that H&Z had already formulated their own brand (interpretation) of the truth, to which the evidence had to submit and was made to submit with their torturous logic.

It is in the light of this that the opening statement now seems like an esoteric sign of minds that had in fact pre-judged the outcome. It is not as if the additional evidence, such as it was, actually made a difference in any way other than as a smokescreen.

Posted by James Raper on 01/13/13 at 02:56 PM | #

I note Zanetti is credited with the remark. I don’t know whether that is odd/insightful or not. I guess it is up to the two professional judges how they work together. It’s just that I would have expected it from Hellmann as presiding judge. Bear in mind Zanetti’s particularly disrespectful and dismissive treatment of Curatolo.

Was it just a case of a “Two Ronnies” act, an imbalance between the two, or something more sinister?

Posted by James Raper on 01/13/13 at 03:28 PM | #

Hi James:

The Hellmann remark I mentioned to Chami which we have never posted on (and I can find no mention of on PMF and no clear quote in Galati) preceded Zanetti’s remark - and was worse!!

You’ll see when we get it up. We are going to post Hellmann’s comment and include it in Cardiols post above. Zanetti seems to have wanted to build on what Hellmann said.

It was easy to overlook because (as you describe) to grasp its full significance one has to understand a bit of Italian law - and a bit of Italian, too, as no English source (maybe Follain?) reported it.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 01/13/13 at 04:39 PM | #

@ James & Peter:

According to Follain, on 24 November, 2010, page 385, digital location 5383, it was Zanetti who said ‘The only certain and undisputed fact is the death of Meredith Kercher.’

Posted by Cardiol MD on 01/13/13 at 05:34 PM | #

What I find particularly distressing is the similarity between Amanda’s concept of the truth as “the best truth I can come up with” and Hellmann’s “courtroom truth,” which he fully acknowledges may be quite different from the actual truth.

While the first can be seen as a murderer’s feeble attempt to create a defensive narrative, the second is more disturbing because we place our trust in courts to arrive at a truth which is not significantly different from the actual truth.  If the courtroom truth is, in fact, very different, then the court failed its purpose.  Hopefully, the Galati appeal will be able to convince the Supreme Court judges of this fact.

Very interesting post, Cardiol. I’d say that Guede’s share of 33% seems reasonable, even if he may not have not have inflicted either of the major wounds.  He was there, he did assault Meredith, and he made no attempt to help Meredith when things started heading from assault to murder.  He didn’t try to stop the others, didn’t carry Meredith out, and didn’t try to call the police.  If he had done any of these, he would have still been guilty of assault, but he would not have been an accessory to murder. Had Meredith survived due to his actions, the court would have probably shown him a degree of leniency compared to the other two.

That said, he was an accessory to murder.  I don’t think he inflicted the fatal wounds or that he knew she would be murdered when he arrived at the cottage, though. It doesn’t make him less guilty, but it does make it seem like he is less of a monster than the person who instigated everything (which is Knox, in my opinion).

Posted by Vivianna on 01/13/13 at 07:03 PM | #


When I was young, I bought a copy of Quine’s famous “Elementary Logic” and read it through. He started with the famous “Moon is made of green cheese”. It was tough and boring but highly readable.

I often use a different criteria to evaluate responsibility. If he (RG) were absent from the premises and utterly unaware of the incidence, he would have 0 responsibilities. By his sheer presence, he has increased his share from 0 to 33%, even if he has not done anything!

He is broadly aware of the details and he has decided not to tell the truth, the whole truth. He is clearly trying to protect somebody else, and the reasons are not clear to me.

I make this hypothetical question: if the other two actors were not there, would he have killed MK? I guess the answer is no. Therefore his share does not go above 33% for the overall responsibility.

On the other hand, would MK survive today if RG were absent from the scene? Perhaps not. That makes the responsibilities from the two others, jointly and individually, more than RG’s. I shall fix his share of the overall responsibility somewhere 25-30%, only on this reason alone.

Who was the prime mover? Both RS and RG are equally distant from MK and had no obvious reason or role. That leaves AK alone. Sorry! She need to take the largest share- perhaps 40-45%. She was closest to MK and had issues with her.

RS was a puppet in AK’s hand and RG had severe weakness for any female. I would give RS a greater share than RG: if RS were absent, perhaps MK would have lived today.

My distribution is somewhat different: AK:45%; RS:35% and RG:20%. I know others will not like it, but RS understood what it is going to lead to whereas RG did not. He just wanted to have some fun with some girl, any girl.

RG touching MK inappropriately only proves my point. But I am not assigning points based on that.

Provability is a weaker notion than truth

Posted by chami on 01/13/13 at 10:11 PM | #

@ Peter & Cardiol

Zanetti made his comment at the beginning of the very first hearing, end of Nov 2010.
Hellmann made his comment three weeks later, in December 2010. This still was before the opening of a trial discussion phase.

Posted by Yummi on 01/14/13 at 01:17 AM | #

Chami, when it comes to intent and motive, I agree with you. 

I think that without Knox’ instigation, neither Sollecito nor Guede would have killed Meredith because they had no reason to.  This should logically assign her a larger part of the blame.

At the same time, without their help, Knox could not have killed Meredith either, even if she desperately wanted to. How could she have done it? Direct assault with a knife or a similar weapon is out of the question, since Meredith could have probably knocked it out of her hand and gotten away.  Poison would have been far too dangerous because procuring it anonymously would have been nearly impossible and because it would have pointed directly to one of the housemates (and Knox would have stood out like a sore thumb as the only one Meredith had had a conflict with).  Shooting would have been unrealistically difficult, since Knox didn’t have the funds to procure a gun (and if she somehow obtained one, the police would have probably been able to trace it back to her).

Knox absolutely needed her accomplices in order to carry out the murder, and I think this is what leads to a more even distribution of the blame.  If a single one of the three, regardless of which, had decided to draw the line, Meredith would have had a much higher chance of survival.  And even if she didn’t survive after all, at least it would have been clear that one of them had done something to help her and that person’s blame percentage could have been lowered accordingly.

Posted by Vivianna on 01/14/13 at 01:26 AM | #

Cardiol, this is great. Guede would have long ago been denounced by innocent students if they’d been falsely accused of his evident crime. Their silence speaks against them. Why can’t they naturally condemn a proven killer of Meredith Kercher?

Also, the knife if retested could yield final answers.

Galati makes good point how illogical to pick and choose what parts of the Skype call Rudy was honest about, when the entire call was mainly a lie to fox an old friend about Rudy’s innocence.

I still think Rudy was promised a lot of money by Raffaele to keep silent, the carrot and the stick, threats if Rudy talked but help with a new life if he kept Raf’s secret. It was Rudy’s only ace in the hole when he fled Perugia. Rudy’s loyalty to Raf may even be a way of paying back an honorable Italian family like Dr. Sollecito’s as an indirect thank-you to the Italian family that raised “orphan” Rudy.

I also think Amanda possibly intended to get drugs like Rohypnol the date rape drug from Rudy to knock Meredith out and toy with her, hoping she would not remember the next morning and be so confused in her mind that she wouldn’t be sure about the missing money. Also one quick way to knock out the intellectual competition.

I’m sorry I’ve been absent lately. I had a great Christmas, a rainy one nice for candles, went bowling, saw Christmas lights with kids and “The Guilt Trip”. Was given J’Adore perfume and bought new rug for bedroom. Happy 2013 to all.

Posted by Hopeful on 01/14/13 at 02:57 AM | #

Hello, and Thank You for this most interesting post !

I have never understood WHY Guede has not come “clean” and just tell the TRUTH about what really happened that night at the cottage.

Sure, Guede and the “truth” are strangers—just like Knox and Sollecito and the “truth” are strangers ...    But what does Guede have to lose NOW ? 

I do believe Guede should be in jail for his role in Meredith’s death—he was there, he admitted it, and he could have called the police right then and there !  But why he continues to “protect” the other 2 baffles me. 

One thing I would really like to know is what Knox told Guede or “promised” him, to get him there that night?

Oh, one more thing :  Were there any witnesses who saw Guede PRIOR to 9:00 pm on the night of Meredith’s murder ?  Did anyone see him at a particular place, or with a particular person(s) ?  We know where Guede went AFTER, but did anyone see Guede before his hook-up with Knox and Sollecito, at the cottage, and what he was “up to” ?

No way did Meredith invite him there as he “claimed”—Knox did !

Have a nice evening everyone ...

Looking forward to SC in March 2013 and praying for True Justice for Meredith Kercher !

Posted by MissMarple on 01/14/13 at 04:00 AM | #

I know t5his is perhaps a moot point but has anybody superimposed a photo of Knox over a photo of Arias. The point I’m making is while there is no face or commonality of a murderer. I saw a picture of Arias just now and I was struck by the similarity between her and Knox. Perhaps it’s my imagination but I see a blankness, a lack not of remorse but a lack of comprehension. In other words if I deny it then it didn’t take place. After all Patrick Lumumba called Knox a brilliant actress. I would suggest that there is more going on here other than psychosis or a sociopath personality

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/14/13 at 07:47 PM | #

@Mizz re:  I have never understood WHY Guede has not come “clean” and just tell the TRUTH about what really happened that night at the cottage.


The simplest answer is that it is not in his better interests to ‘come clean’.  He had his opportunity (as did K&S) to ‘come clean’ during the police interviews and in court.  He didn’t and they didn’t either.  It is unlikely that any of them will ever tell the truth and it’s far more likely to continue to hear more self-serving and contradictory statements from each of them.


Relating to the article:

Without any decent grasp on Italian law it’s tough to tell exactly what H+Z were doing by referencing Cassation’s ruling on multiple attackers.  I think they were explaining that their own appeal verdict merely had to address the lower courts (Massei, Micheli, et al) and that it’s Cassation’s problem to sort out who these multiple attackers really were.

Posted by Stilicho on 01/14/13 at 08:34 PM | #

Hi Stilicho.

Wasn’t there even a theory among some on PMF that somehow Hellmann was being made to fall on his sword? His jittery announcement of the appeal verdict, his distancing remarks the day after, and the hail-Mary nature of the sentencing report could be construed as that.

Judges H&Z didnt have to wait for Cassation to receive their come-uppance either. Their sentencing report drew a lot of tart remarks, Hellmann was edged out into retirement and denied a plum post that he wanted, and Zanetti is serving out his final days at the little court in Terni.

Because of this whiff of corruption, any repeat of any part of the appeal court will probably be held in Florence. It would be Cassation’s role to decide that. Florence has some cheaper accomodation and might be easier to get to, so that might result in a bigger press draw.

My guess is that Knox could show up in Florenece because getting up on the stand or making statements from the floor of the court may be her only card left, though I think her realization that the huge majority is very cynical is what has her circle trembling in the shadows.

The ditsy faux “Knox family friend” Karen Pruett claims that the family are under enormous pressure now, apparently because the multi-million dollar campaign with a large cast of befuddled sheep is being stared down by the mild, objective posts on our non-commercial sites.

Gimme a break. Where IS Amanda Knox? Wheel her out now in front of unbiased TV reporters and let her start to ‘splain.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 01/14/13 at 11:29 PM | #

@ Hopeful – you returned with a gem – “Rudy’s only ace in the hole”
Your theory makes brilliant sense to me.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 01/15/13 at 12:48 AM | #

Contradictions in H & Z go beyond picking up and chosing what they think Rudy is honest about and what not. In fact, H & Z simply omit information from Guede’s claims in the Skype call (thus they misreport and misinterpret the basic claims of Guede).

It is simply not true that Guede does not accuse Sollecito and Knox. It is true that at the beginning of the call he exculpate Knox as he says “non c’entra” (“she is not involved”), but by the end of the call he accuses Knox and Sollecito of having altered the scene and staged the break in.

Apparently H & Z ignore this part of the conversation.

Posted by Yummi on 01/15/13 at 01:13 AM | #

Thanks Yummi. You are so right!

Posted by Cardiol MD on 01/15/13 at 03:15 AM | #

I had to do a double take when I read the title of this post.  I thought there had been another Guede final appeal!

Good post and I like the statistics - they make interesting reading.

Despite probable continuations of camouflage and smoke screening on Guede’s part for ‘murky reasons not made public’ and of course from the other two, I would have thought that all the recent events must mean that the game must surely be up now. 

For all of them.

Posted by thundering on 01/15/13 at 02:27 PM | #

@Grahame Rhodes,
You mention the blank expressions on Knox and Jodi Arias. On PMF they say both women share the same birthday, July 9th. It’s fair to note that both have been involved in knife crimes and sexual excess leading up to the crimes. I think Arias has also taught herself to speak Spanish since her incarceration, as per Nancy Grace.

The blank look on the face, I always see it as suspect, too, a sign that part of a person is not really there or something hasn’t developed emotionally. It’s not a sure fire analysis tool, but maybe a red flag. I agree with you.

Perhaps Jodi Arias and Knox have this in common: they deal with painful emotions by rage and denial. Maybe both are so insecure about being accepted that they cannot bear rejection in the slightest, especially from a male. They think it annihilates them, that they disappear, that’s how weak their internal self-image is. They need strong approval and often. If they’re rejected they have a catastrophic response. In these two females they become outwardly aggressive instead of depressed or self-destructive like most passive females.

Let’s face it, unrequited love is hard to bear at the best of times. Criticism and rejection from a peer that one secretly respects and envies are deeply humiliating. The ego just can’t take it.

Jodi Arias also tried to fake a burglary to cover her crime. She sang a beautiful rendition of “O Holy Night” and won a prison award, much like Amanda won a writing award in prison and also took part in “Hamlet”. Maybe they are just natural actresses who didn’t find their stage in time.

Arias is definitely another case of “Fatal Attraction”, her post-murder sexual behavior is somewhat parallel with Amanda’s trip to the thong store and promises to Raf there.

Posted by Hopeful on 01/15/13 at 09:07 PM | #


There is another wrinkle here also. Arias was at the home of a friend of Travis Alexander and she was flirting outrageously with all the men present so much so that the wife of this friend told Arias “She was not welcome in her home and would she please leave.” Arias became confused and sat at the kitchen table for about ten minutes much to the annoyance of the wife. She finally left much to the relief of all.

Point is the confusion of Arias.

Point is the confusion of Knox.

Knox exhibited behavior which to her was ordinary and something she did at home and elsewhere. (Reference the video of Knox in the company of about six males before she left for Perugia, plus the sex for power over men she had never met before, plus her conduct in the bar where she flirted with all the males instead of working so much so that she was about to be fired by the owner Patrick Lumumba. She was also rejected and criticized not just by Meredith and everyone in the house but if you examine her childhood by her father as well. No wonder therefore she gravitated to Sollicito and Guede who were going through their own feelings of rejection and hate. (Manga comics fascination with knifes etc;) A situation primed for drugs and murder and revenge which even extended to Patrick Lumumba as well.

Now she’s stuck with parents who have still rejected her and a situation which is beyond her control. I can just imagine the amount of anger and cross examination she went through upon her return to Seattle. Even Sollicito who she had power over has thrown her under the bus. Time alone will crucify her.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/15/13 at 10:35 PM | #

Wasn´t Knox´s blank facial expression due to the fact that she was a drug addict ?

Posted by aethelred23 on 01/16/13 at 05:40 AM | #


Don’t know about the drug addict stuff. She can’t have got much in jail. My take on it is that Knox and Sollicito were both on coke or amphetamines or a combination of both at the time of the murder, never mind weed or Guede either for that matter. Has it ever been established if anything else was missing from the house? Pills for example? Knox was probably high when she got off the plane in Seattle. They probably fed her a couple of Valium at least. The tears were certainly for the press corps never mind the fact that she believed she’d got away with it.

Speaking of Guede though it would be very likely that Giulia Bongiorno and company could easily make life in Jail for Guede really difficult or they could make his life easy the price being his silence. Bongiorno is very very ambitious and as has been pointed out many times she will do anything including witness tampering in order to win. Remember Luciano Aviello and the 30,000 euros for example. Giulia Bongiorno by her actions has proved that she could care less for Meredith who is obviously the real victim in all of this travesty of justice. Hell has a special place for lawyers and politicians.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/16/13 at 06:34 PM | #

Cross-posting this from PMF.  My apologies to those who read both boards.


I came across something interesting today which I wanted to tell you about, but bear with me because it will take a bit of explaining.

A few months ago, I discovered Illamasqua, a UK-based professional make-up brand. Their products tend to be expensive, but of very good quality, and they have an exceptional color range. They do offer discount codes and have occasional sales, so I visit often, being a bit of a make-up addict.

While I usually go straight to what I need, trying to avoid temptation, today I was browsing and noticed a section of their website entitled S.O.P.H.I.E., which included a few make-up products, a bracelet, and a donation button. It turns out that they are supporting the Sophie Lancaster foundation, which was created in the aftermath of the particularly brutal and senseless murder of Sophie Lancaster in 2007 - same year as Meredith’s.

You can read about the murder here. It’s very sad and disturbing, and while the UK courts clearly condemned the attack as despicable and handed out prison sentences from a few years to life, it seems that the “life” sentences were a bit light (15-16 years minimum). But at least there was some justice done for Sophie and her partner.

A couple of things which stood out for me were how the attackers were bragging about doing “a good thing” after the murder, and how one of the young men accused of murder was laughing and joking with his mother when they initially interviewed him. Probably sounds familiar, in light of Knox’ and Sollecito’s behavior at the police station, or of Sollecito’s recent statement that he’s always made the right choice. :rolleyes:

I was also reading about the foundation Sophie’s mother established, which seems to be focused on educating young people about hate speech and hate crimes. It seems that their collaboration with Illamasqua had good results too in terms of fundraising.

I was thinking that maybe this could be an avenue that the Meredith foundation could explore. Illamasqua seems to me like a brand dedicated to diversity, both ethnic and cultural, and Meredith was a beautiful, accomplished woman of mixed cultural background. I think it would lovely if they made a Meredith collection, including perhaps the gold eyeshadow she seemed to wear in so many of her photos (it’s my favorite too, and generally used by many women with brown eyes). I wonder if Stephanie would be interested in talking to them, since they are a British brand and they seem to support similar causes.

So I wanted to ask you if you thought this would be a good idea and if I should try to write to Meredith’s foundation with this suggestion.

Posted by Vivianna on 01/16/13 at 06:36 PM | #

Sorry, I forgot to include the url formatting for the link in my previous post: murder of Sophie Lancaster

Posted by Vivianna on 01/16/13 at 06:38 PM | #

Vivianna, that is a lovely idea. What better way to keep Meredith’s memory alive than to put her name on something she liked 😊 I would so totally buy the products.

Posted by Sara on 01/16/13 at 07:57 PM | #


I also think that RG has been paid to keep quiet. He was told that he must take some blame and go to jail for sometime and in return he was promised something… significant…

I think the promise did not come from AK or her family. It must have come from papa, who knows the tools of the trade. Nobody knows better than him how the system runs. Papa is an honorable man and he will keep his word. RG took the bait. I think. I do not think RS even knows it.

I am also stunned to know that Hellman did not get the promotion: something must have gone seriously wrong. He did his job perfectly but somebody messed it up- but who?

I also think RG was promised a night of uninterrupted fun but how he got in the circle? He was the proverbial sacrificial lamb but this was only known to AK. But only think AK can offer is her charm… Did she use RG like a ...

RG went to the toilet is another interesting point: was he feeling too nervous at the time?

RG was the ideal candidate for the job because he is smartly dumb. The ivory coast genes, you know what I mean.

I think I am going to say like Hellman: only thing I know for sure…

Posted by chami on 01/16/13 at 07:57 PM | #

@chami:  “I also think that RG has been paid to keep quiet. He was told that he must take some blame and go to jail for sometime and in return he was promised something… significant…”


Paying or threatening people is a high-risk venture over a long term (unless you simply kill the snitch).  Those tactics also leave an indelible trail that’s easily discovered.  The Sollecitos, moreover, are so bad at manipulating people and breaking the law that they’ve been in court for doing so and Knife-Boy’s own sister lost her job over it.

It’s far more likely that Guede is in self-preservation mode as are most who are imprisoned for sexual assault.


@Pete:  “The ditsy faux “Knox family friend” Karen Pruett claims that the family are under enormous pressure now, apparently because the multi-million dollar campaign with a large cast of befuddled sheep is being stared down by the mild, objective posts on our non-commercial sites.”


The timing of the book and Knox’s continued self-imposed solitary confinement might have a lot in common with Lance Armstrong’s ‘confessions’ to Oprah.  Jackie (at PMF) regards this as a slender chance but I don’t see it that way if millions are at stake for a large publishing house.

Knox herself lost a bid to keep €40,000 from an Italian publisher over material her own family leaked or sold.  Since there’s nothing else she knows about the case worth $4 million, the publisher might well be gambling on recouping its investment through an Armstrongesque media tour in the wake of Cassation’s ruling against Knox.

The delays are certainly awkward.  If I were working on the account I’d be making sure the business unit was well aware that all of Knox’s story is already freely available in the public domain.  Except the ‘money shot’ that explains exactly where she was and what she did that night at the cottage.

It took Lance Armstrong more than a decade to come clean…

Posted by Stilicho on 01/16/13 at 09:08 PM | #


“Paying or threatening people is a high-risk venture over a long term”- it was not high risk when it was made. It has become high (medium risk, in my opinion) risk because of the wide publicity the case has received. The publicity was unanticipated- in my opinion.

We still know very little about the Italian dramatis personae. But you also say “The Sollecitos, moreover, are so bad at manipulating people”- that I also disagree (we need to know how many times they have succeeded vs the number of times they have failed). I shall however say that the PR campaign of AK is a miserable failure simply because they do not know when to shut up. The 2M dollar campaign was badly managed (something called high and dry)- compare papa doc vs Mariotte.

Can AK now say “Look, ma, I am certified 100% clean: read H&Z”- but the thanks has to go to papa doc. That is how I see it.

Well, it is a matter of opinion. Thanks anyway.

Posted by chami on 01/17/13 at 10:55 AM | #


Given the amount of sleazy individuals in the P/R campaign it would not surprise me in the least if some of the funds have gone missing ie Frank Sforza and company

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/17/13 at 04:47 PM | #

@chami:  We’ll both have our opinions and our reasons.  No problem with that.

Actually, though, Knox cannot say she’s ‘certified 100% clean’.  Keep in mind that, if Sollecito was involved in the verdict, he carefully ensured that Knox can never say she’s ‘certified 100% clean’ due to the powerful message sent by the imposition of the four year prison sentence for calunnia.  Accusing an innocent black man of murder tarnishes the Knox brand in the US where matters of race are paramount.  It will follow her around for the rest of her life.

Posted by Stilicho on 01/17/13 at 11:24 PM | #

Thanks Cardiol,
With all the other bribes we know changed hands, I’m convinced that Rudy was paid to remain silent. I would even go further and suggest that they were willing to give him a far greater reward if he’d testify to say he acted alone.  He didn’t take up this option of course, but he left them hoping he would until the very last minute.

Posted by Spencer on 01/19/13 at 02:16 PM | #

Makes eminent sense. I can almost hear them discussing it, and why not it’s the obvious ploy and it makes Guede’s court statement even more compelling.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/19/13 at 04:42 PM | #

“Accusing an innocent black man of murder tarnishes the Knox brand in the US, where matters of race are paramount.”
Paramount, perhaps on paper (PC journalism, gov’t policy, etc), Stilicho, but on the ground here in many circles there is only the thinnest veneer of respect for other races, running to a blatant, pious racism, judging by the disgusting references in the comments below any internet news item about Obama. I persist in believing that there are plenty of “good, clean folk” who know the Students’ hands are bloody, but still think only the black guy can be truly deserving of punishment, because he was born and bred to live in prison.
I don’t know what Guede thought the evening held in store. We know he was suffering from intestinal distress (an overly spicy kebab, mixed with a highly disturbing argument?) But unless he was out of his head on dope, I can’t imagine he meant to cause serious bodily harm to anyone. More hapless, clueless, hopeless. Things got turned upside-down too quickly, and he reacted by hiding in the disco crowd, then running very far away. But if he planned to return to Italy, how could he trust that he would not be worse off by giving the police the names of the others? He was, and remains a coward.
One bloody hand washes the other. AK must be holding her breath, as well as her tongue.

Posted by mimi on 01/20/13 at 02:11 AM | #

Posters on TJMK often argue that while Knox and Sollecito remain pure evil, Guede may still have some shred of decency left in him.
I wonder if this could be true ? Last June I was quite excited when he was called in to court to testify during the appeal , I actually thought that he would tell what really happened the night Meredith died. It turned out that he unambigously accused Sollecito and Knox of murder yet refused to disclose the whole truth.

Posted by aethelred23 on 01/20/13 at 04:19 AM | #

@ Grahame Rhodes

Are you sure Knox was on Valium the day she returned to Seattle? Valium or Diazepame ( its medical name) is a powerful sedative and usually employed to treat epileptic seizures. She would have been asleep all the way home and I very much doubt that she would have been able to hold the tearful speech she delivered right after her release from prison if she´d actually been treated with a dose of Valium!

Posted by aethelred23 on 01/20/13 at 04:26 AM | #


Of course that is conjecture on my part, but a single Valium crushed and then only a small part administered in water would not have the full effect but would at least cause her to sleep in order to appear semi normal before the Seattle cameras. I have nothing but contempt for her rotten family anyway and would put nothing past them including seeing Knox as a cash cow to be exploited and manipulated for future monetary gain.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/20/13 at 11:35 PM | #

“. . . . would put nothing past them including seeing Knox as a cash cow to be exploited and manipulated for future monetary gain.”

Her math mom and and finance dad do create a kafkaesque reality.

Posted by Helder Licht on 01/21/13 at 01:08 AM | #


I agree. You made some very important and accurate observations. He ran away but not really far. He was caught travelling without a ticket but that does not cause an arrest. Too many missing details.

Was the deal worked out via his lawyer? How much did he admit to his own lawyer? How much is enough for him? Was it a simple threat or also money (I assume both together works best)?

I formed some idea after I read his bio. He is a fool and only a small coward. See, he decided to return back to surrender. If he were smarter, he would have exploited the kindness and generosity of his benefactors to the fullest. He still has some traces of moral sense (and sensibilities).

He does look straight in the eye: most criminals can’t face people once they are exposed. E.g., RS.

AK blames Patrick for a reason. She wanted the plan to accuse RG to gel nicely and that needed time. Why did RG run away to Germany? I would have gone to south! even Rome or Naples would have been a perfect hiding place. Italians tolerate blacks far more than anyone else in Europe. I am curious to know the deals.

I also think AK needs treatment. There is something strange in her actions, behaviour and thinking (not to mention her looks). I will not call her “pure evil”.

My personal opinion. Your mileage may vary.

Man is born free but everywhere he is in chains. Woman is only liberated.

Posted by chami on 01/21/13 at 07:28 PM | #


I love the quote, and it is quite true. Only woman are truly liberated because they can see the future. On the other hand Men are bogged down in the constant ‘Now’ of immediate gratification.

Point of order though. I do not include such mentally damaged people as Amanda Knox, Jodie Arias, or Casie Anthony and others who in my opinion are not woman in the true sense of loving and nurchuring people.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 01/21/13 at 08:04 PM | #

@ Grahame Rhodes
I was simply wondering because I have been put on Valium myself and it made me sleep for three days and I suffered from horrible spasms !
Anyway let´s hope this spring finally brings true justice .

Posted by aethelred23 on 01/23/13 at 04:37 AM | #
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