Amanda Knox not guilty, says Italian mafioso
Amanda Knox is serving a 26-year sentence for murder in Italy. Will new testimony – and forensic evidence – be enough to overturn her conviction?
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The police will take no action on Aviello’s startling claims until an appeals court decides whether to admit them as evidence. No warrant has been issued for Antonio Aviello’s arrest, and his whereabouts are unknown.Skip to next paragraph
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Why turn in your brother?
Luciano Aviello’s motives for naming his brother as the murderer may lie in the hope that in return for giving valuable information to the authorities, he might earn a reduction in his sentence.
Whatever the truth of his assertions, Knox’s lawyers, Carlo Dalla Vedova and Luciano Ghirga, want him to be admitted as a witness. They visited him in March at a jail near Turin and made a videotape of his statement.
They have insisted that, although his claims may seem far-fetched, during the 11-month trial the prosecution was allowed to call equally unreliable witnesses, including a homeless man and an Albanian immigrant whose testimony was shown to be full of holes.
“I think it’s a ploy by the defense to show that the trial was unfair and that some of the witnesses that the prosecution was allowed to call were ludicrous,” says Barbie Latza Nadeau, the author of “Angel Face – The True Story of Student Killer Amanda Knox."
“As a mafia turncoat, he was considered credible enough to be used by the state in mafia-related matters, so Knox’s defense are asking why he shouldn’t be heard on this case.”
Ms. Nadeau, who covered the trial for Newsweek and opinion website The Daily Beast, says that Knox may win a reduction of her sentence at the first level of appeal, on the basis of alleged mistakes made by the judge in his sentencing.
But she says that any chance of having the conviction and sentence overturned would only come if, and when, the case is referred to Italy’s highest ‘Cassazione’ court. “That could take another two or three years, if not longer,” she says.
Slander hearing begins this week
In the meantime, Knox faces separate legal proceedings for slander after she claimed during the trial that officers slapped her around the head when they questioned her a few days after the killing.
The slander case, which is ongoing despite the appeal against her murder conviction, will next be heard on Thursday, June 17. If found guilty of slander, Knox could face another six years in jail, on top of the 26 years she is currently serving.
During evidence she gave in court last summer, she demonstrated how a woman police officer had allegedly twice hit her around the head and called her a “stupid liar.”
She was saying ‘Come on, come on, remember’ and then – slap – she hit me. Then ‘come on, come on’ and – slap – another one.”
Italian police have strenuously denied that Knox was subjected to any physical abuse.
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