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Amanda Knox 'surprised' by slander verdict and planning appeal

Amanda Knox arrives at courtroom in Florence, Italy, 5 June 2024   -  
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Antonio Calanni/Copyright 2024 The AP. All rights reserved


US citizen, Amanda Knox, says she was surprised by an Italian appeals court's decision to find her guilty of slander.

A Florence court on Wednesday found her guilty of slander over accusations she made in relation to the murder of her British flatmate in Perugia in 2007.

Knox had falsely accused Congolese bar owner Patrick Lumumba of murdering Meredith Kercher in an earlier case.

She, together with her Italian boyfriend and another man from Ivory Coast, were found guilty of Kercher’s murder in 2009.

Knox served four years in an Italian jail for the killing, but her conviction was annulled by Italy’s highest court in 2015.

"I was very surprised by this verdict to tell the truth, I thought it was a very clear matter, that there is a document in question that we can all read and the message of this document is I do not know who killed Meredith," she said.

Knox claims she named Lumumba while under duress as police questioned her.

In 2016, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that this interrogation violated Knox's rights because she was questioned without a lawyer or official translator.

Last November, Italy's top court threw out the slander conviction and ordered a retrial.

“It wasn't a 'he said she said” issue. Black on white a three-page document that everyone can read and for everyone to judge. And I think the message is very clear that I was a terrified girl who wanted to do the right thing."

Lumumba was held for two weeks in 2007 before he was freed. Ahead of Wednesday’s hearing, his lawyer told reporters that he became known everywhere as “the monster of Perugia” after Knox accused him.

Knox had returned to Italy in the hope of clearing her name in the last legal case against her. She says she plans to appeal the verdict.

The sentence will have no practical impact as it is covered by the time Knox already spent in jail in Italy.

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