On Tuesday, Italy’s highest court ordered a retrial of Amanda Knox. You remember her, right? Here’s a quick refresher: in 2007, Amanda Knox was studying abroad in Perugia, Italy, just north of Rome. Her roommate, Meredith Kercher, was found in their room on November 1, 2007 with her throat slit. Knox and her then-boyfriend were tried, convicted, and then later acquitted of the murder of Kercher in 2009. Not exactly your ideal study abroad experience, am I right?
In the good ol’ U.S. of A, this case would have been over – you know, can’t be tried for the same crime twice. Well, in Italy things don’t work thay way. Kercher’s parents were allowed to challenge the ruling, and Knox’s acquittal was overturned, meaning she will be retried, starting over again as if the past trial had never happened.
Regardless of whether you think Knox is guilty or not, this case puts the spotlight on some serious differences between the Italian and American legal systems. Knox’s lawyer said she probably will not appear for the new trial, but could be tried in absentia. The Italian authorities could seek to extradite her only if her conviction was upheld in the new trial and confirmed by Italy’s Court of Cassation, whose decisions are final.
So what do you think? Should this lurid case be tried again, or should Knox be let of the hook, considering she’s already been acquitted? What does this say about BOTH countries’ legal systems?