Friday, October 01, 2010

Knox Calunnia Hearing: Amanda Knox Enters Court Via The Underground Entrance

Posted by Peter Quennell

Amanda Knox enters the court in the more modern part of town where Rudy Guede was tried last October.

As described by Andrea Vogt in the quotes in the post just below, this is a closed hearing. This is NOT a charge initiated by the prosecution in Knox’s murder trial or for that matter by the State of Italy.

It is initiated by the complaining police (represented by the Florentine lawyer Francesco Maresca, who was also the lawyer appinted to represent Meredith’s family in the Knox, Sollecito and Guede trials) who are denying Knox’s claims that she was maltreated as a witness.

So Mr Maresca and Amanda Knox’s lawyers Mr Ghirga and Mr Della Vedova will go to it toe-to-toe.  Judge Claudia Matteini could put the case on ice today, or she could decide that it goes forward to full trial in one form or another.

Although prison time (up to six years) is a possible outcome of the main trial, if there is one, this is in essence a civil case. Slander cases are not that common in Italy for the simple reason that penalties are very tough - and so there is very little real slander.

Slandering the cops, if Amanda Knox did do that, would seem a singularly ill-advised move. Her own lawyers certainly never advised it, or complained about rough treatment, or even suggested that they believed it was true.

Italian cops generally have an easy relationship with the population, and the crime rate in Italy compared to most other countries is low. The murder rate is only 1/6 that of the United States, for example, and one of the lowest in the world.

Italy also has an impressively cautious and careful justice system described here by our Italian posters Nicki and Commisario and Cesare, which is unquestionably the most respected Italian public institution. The Innocence Project has never helped to overturn a case in Italy, and we believe they do not even have any questionable cases listed.

Amnesty International and the European institutions do occasionally complain of the Italian justice system being slow, but that is essentially a factor of its extreme caution, and all the hurdles that prosecutors have to make their way through.

What the record suggests actually happened in Knox’s brief examination as a witness on the night was described in this post here. 

So not only does Amanda Knox not carry very much credibility here - her charges seem to have been a seriously wrong turn. They perhaps in themselves halved what public sympathy she had left.

As we have often said here, we think her bravado has been very foolishly egged-on


Since when Italian cops “mostly don’t wear guns” ? I’m German and been many times to Italy and even studied in Perugia and I don’t think that this statement is correct. This year I was stopped by Polizia Stradale and they had guns and bullet proof vests. As I can remember from earlier visits, Carabinieri (and also Polizia) always wear guns, especially in the eighties and nineties I saw them alot with Beretta PM12S2 Machine Pistols (maybe Mafia and left wing terror related). 

Can some Italian verify my claims please!
PS. In Britain for some strange reason Cops mostly don’t wear guns!

Posted by Mikaza on 10/04/10 at 06:26 PM | #

By Storm Roberts (Innai)

In the UK only specialist armed police units are allowed to carry guns - something I am very grateful for, the idea of ordinary police carrying guns is incredibly worrying to me.  I don’t find it strange that police do not carry guns, I find it worrying when they do.

I have seen Italian police both with and without guns - which is more common I do not know, but the ones with guns did (to me) appear to be kitted up for some kind of operation, the unarmed officers were dressed in uniform.

Posted by Nolongeramember on 10/04/10 at 07:08 PM | #

I am sorry for Innai but here Mikaza is right.


Polizia di Sato:

Posted by ncountryside on 10/05/10 at 12:20 PM | #

It makes no sense to me that police wouldn’t wear guns.  If police don’t wear guns then only the criminals will be armed!  The police absolutely need to be armed to protect themselves and the populace from the criminal element.

Posted by Mo-in-Mass.,USA on 10/05/10 at 01:48 PM | #

Thanks a lot everybody. This was the comment as I removed it from the main post: “[the police] mostly don’t wear guns”. TJMK readers help us a lot with the research and we get emails daily. I’ve never seen guns drawn in NYC, but at the stations and airports there are some scary SWAT-team type guys standing watching.

The only aftermath of a shooting I’ve ever seen was ironically a block from the UN when on the way home right before Christmas I came across Gambino family crime boss Paul Castellano and his driver gunned down. There was one cop and 4-5 New Yorkers just standing, but a few minutes later sirens went off all over the city and detectives poured in.

Maybe someone will correct me on this too but autostrada cops seemed very rare on my last trip - I saw only one police car, at an accident between Venice and Milan. No radar? Few in France too although there they now have speed cameras on the autoroutes.

Cop cars are always visible in the large piazza in Perugia (by the fountain) and small piazza (outside the court). Perugia cops seem to enjoy talking and mingling. Most popular cops in NYC would be those on the horses around Times Square.Cops here have been trained to be benign and it sure seemed to help to push the crime rate right down.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/05/10 at 02:14 PM | #

Peter, be very careful between Verona and Milano (….and also between Bologna and Firenze) Tutor - 23.02.pdf

Posted by ncountryside on 10/05/10 at 02:49 PM | #

Good advice, ncountryside, as your autostradas are so well engineered and enticing, especially on the great northern planes where, quite coincidentally, Ferraris and Maseratis and Lamborghinis are made.

The median speed now seems 140km (close to 90 mph) meaning that a few cars go a lot of miles an hour faster. I stick with the high average and didn’t have the experience Mikaza above describes.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/05/10 at 03:09 PM | #

By Storm Roberts (Innai)


I think it depends on your country’s gun legislation.  In the UK gun ownership is very restricted and tightly regulated, the only people I know who own guns are farmers and they must keep their guns securely locked away when not in use (and they are regularly inspected to make sure they comply with the gun legislation).  I accept that some criminals will access guns, and that is what specialist firearms police are for - guns are very hard to access and are not common even in crime.

I believe guns are more easily accessible in the US (I have Amrican friends who have guns), and possibly are more commonly used by criminals - if that is the case maybe the police in the US do need to be armed to protect themselves and the general public.

As for Peter’s comments on traffic police I think that traffic police rely a lot on technology to catch speeders - simple and now “average speed” traps can mean that the first you know about the police being involved is when the ticket hits the doormat!  Where I currently am the police have “road safety” days/weeks where they seem to stop everyone and anyone to check out their cars and tax discs etc.

Posted by Nolongeramember on 10/08/10 at 05:07 PM | #
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

Where next:

Click here to return to The Top Of The Front Page

Or to next entry Knox Slander Hearing Adjourned: Her Lawyers Make It Sound Like She Might Crack - Too Late?

Or to previous entry Knox Movie: Hardening Suggestions Panettiere & Dornhelm & Battles Have Been Sold A Total Dog