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Prosecutors criticise media 'obsession' with Amanda Knox

US student Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend are appealing their convictions for the murder of Knox’s flatmate Meredith Kercher four years ago in Italy.

Amanda Knox arrives at court in Perugia, Italy yesterday.
Amanda Knox arrives at court in Perugia, Italy yesterday.
Image: AP Photo/Stefano Medici

AN ITALIAN COURT has begun hearing closing arguments in the appeal case of American student Amanda Knox, convicted of murdering her flatmate four years ago.

Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were convicted of sexually assaulting and murdering British student Meredith Kercher in November 2007 at the apartment Knox and Kercher shared in Perugia. Both have denied any involvement in her death.

In the first half of their closing argument, the prosecution called on the jury to ignore what it described as an “almost obsessive” media campaign in support of Knox and Sollecito and to think instead of the young murder victim, whom they claim has “sunk into an absolute and shameful oblivion” because of the focus on the two defendants.

Prosecutors also showed graphic images of the murder scene and reviewed the central evidence of the case, including testimony which appears to contradict the defendants’ alibi for the night of the murder.

They also played down the results of a recent independent review of DNA evidence collected at the scene which was crucial in the convictions. The independent review raised questions about the quality of the DNA samples and their possible contamination, giving Knox’s family hope the convictions could be overturned.

Lead prosecutor Giancarlo Costagliola insisted yesterday that “all clues converge towards the only possible result of finding the defendants guilty”.

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A third person, Rudy Guede, was convicted of Kercher’s death in a separate court case and sentenced to 16 years. He also denies any wrongdoing.

- Additional reporting by the AP

‘The Amanda Knox Story’ movie angers family of Meredith Kercher >

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