We are in the last stages of the trial of Amanda Knox and Rafaelle Sollecito for the murder of Meredith Kercher. Rudy Guede is already serving 30 years for the crime, but the prosecution are alleging that Knox and Sollecito were involved in a sex game that turned into murder. Amanda Knox has been represented in the Italian press, and to a large extent in the British press, as an evil dominating sexual woman – ie evil because sexual and female – who master-minded the whole thing.
The judge in the case has allowed the imprisonment of Knox in an overcrowded jail and has refused bail; he has allowed the prosecution to show the jury a reconstruction of their theories about what happened involving computer avatars. There is reason to worry that the fix may be in.
The local magistrate and prosecutor Mignin is under investigation for abuse of office and has form for over-elaborate theories – his pursuit of the so-called Monster of Florence, never actually caught, was hampered by his ideas about Black Magic conspiracies and organ theft. While failing to catch any actual killer, he was quite good at locking up a journalist who criticized him and threatening an American who was writing a book about the case thriller writer Doug Preston .
Obviously Preston has his own beefs with Mignini, but here’s his take on the Kercher case . Needless to say, he thinks Knox and Sollecito are innocent. He is good on the balance of probability and the incredibly dodgy DNA evidence as well as on how the case is part of Mignini’s complicated fantasy life.
Julie Bindel – I have in fairness to record – also thinks Knox innocent , though her analysis depends on feminist theory rather more than on the actual evidence Preston raises. Still, given the supine and sexist attitude of most of the UK press to the case, she is like a little ray of sunshine, for once.
All of this is going on in an Italy whose scandal-rocked Prime Minister pushes through laws to give himself immunity, while owning most of the press and other media and using them to promote himself and destroy his enemies. It is part of the same pattern of seedy insanity as the mysterious death in Rome of Brenda, the trans woman found dead in a burned out apartment, after being involved in scandal around a local politician.
It is all like a noir thriller with no detectives.