Europe court orders Italy to pay damages to Amanda Knox

Law Review

Europe's human rights court on Thursday ordered Italy to pay Amanda Knox financial damages for police failure to provide legal assistance and an independent interpreter during a long night of questioning following the Nov. 1, 2007 murder of her British roommate. But the court said there was insufficient evidence to support claims of psychological and physical mistreatment.

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, said in its ruling that Italy hadn't succeeded in proving that "the restriction of Ms. Knox's access to a lawyer ... had not irreparably undermined the fairness of the proceedings as a whole." It said Italy must pay Knox 18,400 euros ($20,000) in damages, costs and expenses.

"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 noted.

After more than seven years of legal battles and flip-flop decisions, Knox was definitively acquitted of Meredith Kercher's murder by Italy's highest court in March 2015. But a damaging conviction and three-year sentence for falsely accusing a Congolese bar owner of the murder was confirmed, leaving a cloud over her acquittal.

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