Amanda Knox to appeal slander reconviction

Amanda Knox (centre) with her husband Christopher Robinson outside Florence courthouse

  ROME -- Amanda Knox announced her intention to appeal after being reconvicted of slander for accusing Patrick Lumumba of the 2007 murder of British exchange student Meredith Kercher, according to a TV interview on Thursday.

  “I feel sad, but I’m determined.” Knox explained in an interview with Sky TG24 which aired on Thursday evening. “I have nothing to hide, and I will never stop telling the truth. I didn’t slander Patrick. I didn’t kill my friend. I will come back here as many times as I have to in order to fight against this injustice.”

  Meredith Kercher and Amanda Knox had been sharing a house in the Umbrian city of Perugia in 2007, where they were language exchange students at the university. Kercher, a 21-year-old from Surrey, was found dead in her bedroom with her throat cut and multiple stab wounds. She had been sexually assaulted. 

  Lawyers argued that Knox, who was 20 at the time, did not speak Italian fluently and was interrogated by the police without legal assistance or an interpreter. Knox explained to the court on Wednesday that the police pressured her into accusing Lumumba of being the culprit. 

  Lumumba was arrested in 2007 in connection with the murder, following Knox’s allegation, spending 2 weeks behind bars; he was released after a customer from the bar that he owned gave Lumumba an alibi. 

  “I never wanted to slander Patrick. He was my friend. He took care of me and consoled me for the loss of my friend. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to resist the pressure and he suffered," Knox said to the court.

  In 2009, Knox, and her Italian ex-boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, were found guilty of the murder of Meredith Kercher. Knox was then convicted of slander in 2011. In 2014, the pair’s guilty verdict was reinstated by the Court of Cassation, Italy’s supreme court,  before finally being overturned in 2015. 

  In 2023, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Knox’s interrogation violated her rights, and ordered a retrial on the slander conviction. Because she has already served time, Knox will not need to return to prison following her reconviction of slander.

  Rudy Guede, from the Ivory Coast, was also convicted for Kercher’s murder and sentenced to 16 years. He was released in 2021 after only serving 13 years behind bars. 

  During Thursday evening’s interview with SkyTg24 about the slander ruling, Knox insisted that she was "a victim" and "this verdict is not right and is not correct". 

  “I have been unjustly accused for 17 years, that is, my entire adult life. I spent four years in prison as an innocent. From the beginning I just wanted to do the right thing and tell the truth. Sometimes I think there is nothing I can do but I’ll try forever.”