EU court orders Italy to pay Amanda Knox damages

The European Court of Human Rights ordered Italy to pay more than $11,700 in damages to Amanda Knox, an American whose murder conviction in the country was overturned.

Amanda Knox, right, and her mother Edda smile at a crowd of supporters during a news conference held at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport when she came home on October 4, 2011. The European Court of Human Rights ordered Italy to pay Knox damages. Photo by Jim Bryant
Amanda Knox, right, and her mother Edda smile at a crowd of supporters during a news conference held at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport when she came home on October 4, 2011. The European Court of Human Rights ordered Italy to pay Knox damages. Photo by Jim Bryant

Knox was studying abroad in Italy and lived with her roommate, Meredith Kercher, who was found dead on November 2, 2007, court documents show. Knox was convicted of murdering Kercher and served four years in prison before she was released on appeal. She was acquitted in 2015.
“Ms. Knox had been particularly vulnerable, being a foreign young woman, 20 at the time, not having been in Italy for very long and not being fluent in Italian,” the court said in a press release.

The EU court found that the Italian government failed to show why it didn’t allow Knox access to a lawyer when she was being questioned by police and faced a criminal charge.

That “undermined the fairness of the proceedings as a whole,” the court determined.

The court also ruled the conduct of Knox’s interpreter affected the outcome of the criminal court case.

“In the court’s view, that initial failure had thus had repercussions for other rights and had compromised the fairness of the proceedings as a whole,” the court ruled.

The court also ordered Italy to pay another $9,000 in costs and expenses.

The court did not find evidence that Knox was subjected to inhuman or degrading treatment while in police custody.

Rudy Guede, born in Ivory Coast, is serving a 16-year sentence for his role in the killing.

ByNicholas Sakelaris