Knox Parents Get New Judge In Defamation Case

We previously discussed how the parents of Amanda Knox are being sued by police for objecting to their shoddy investigation. It is an absurd case — one of many such defamation cases in Europe where courts allow lawsuits over comments that would be protected from liability in the United States. Now, the judge in the libel case has resigned due to a conflict of interest, but the police are still going forward with the lawsuit — despite the fact that recent disclosures establish clearly shoddy work by the police.

Judge Paolo Micheli said he would recuse himself from the trial of Knox’s parents Edda Mellas and Curt Knox. The trial of their daughter showed numerous instances of alleged substandard police work and recently the court heard evidence that the DNA evidence failed to show the victim’s blood on the murder weapon, a kitchen knife. While Knox’s DNA was found on the handle, the experts found there was possible contamination of the evidence and that no blood could be conclusively linked to the victim, Meredith Kercher.

The statements of the parents should be protected opinion, particularly when the subject of the comments is the government itself. Putting aside the problems with the Italian defamation laws, it is very disturbing to see the parents of a defendant or a victim subjected to such lawsuits. Whether you believe Knox or not, these parents are going through a living hell and should be allowed a degree of deference in responding to the case. The police can and did defend their actions. Suing these parents, in my view, is little more than harassment and retaliation for criticism of the government.

There are many legal lessons we could take from Europe, but defamation is not one of them. The case shows the dire need for countries like Italy to reexamine their laws to afford greater protection of opinion and political statements. As with the increase in blasphemy and hate speech prosecutions, free speech seems under assault in the West.

Source: CNN

Jonathan Turley

7 thoughts on “Knox Parents Get New Judge In Defamation Case”

  1. Jonathan, while I generally agree with your comment, we must be quite careful with the full context. Rarely do situations get to these extremes without adequate warnings and notices.

  2. of course there is a movement to curtail free speech. as we ARE NOT FREE. and the elites are no longer hiding the fact that we are enslaved and they refuse to be criticised for doing what they do. hence their retaliation of civilians now ….. remember just a few days ago about the woman arrested for videotaping the cops

  3. Prosecuting the parents might be another way to help the prosecution in making sure Amanda stays in jail just because of the financial burden it’s putting on them. The more they have to spend on their own defense the less they have to put towards the defense of their daughter.

  4. AY is correct that this is just an unbelievable situation. Since when do free people have to defend their freedom to speak their mind about what they consider to be government abuses? Did they say outside of the “free speech zone”? Italy should be ashamed of itself and maybe this is a lesson for us here in America that we could be next in line for this additional loss of freedom.

  5. There seems to be a world wide movement to curtail reasonable free speech, when directed at authority. Wouldn’t we all have loved to do and have done our work with no criticism allowed?

  6. You say they PARENTS are being sued by the police….YOU HAVE TO BE KIDDING ME….this is July….Not APRIL….See the corrections page where numerous cases are being set aside because of shoddy, lying EXPERTS….

    It is my Opinion that this young lady was framed from the get go…they needed someone to tag and an AMERICAN was an easy target….

    What ever happened to the Marines that cut the cable for the gondola? Were they ever taken back to Italy for trial? Or are we still hiding them here?

    The next time people wanna go off on every person of Arabic decent or Muslim…think about this young lady’s misfortune…

    On a Major side note…did the Prosecutor in the Original Knox case ever serve his time for the…

    “Prosecutor Giuliano Mignini faces a 16-month suspended jail sentence after a Florence court convicted him of abusing his position in a 1985 investigation into the death of a doctor believed to be part of a satanic group. An Italian police investigator was also convicted in the case.”

    And you wanna know one of the reasons I walked away from the practice….

    When the Judge, Prosecutor, Investigators share the same beds….and give Jury’s instructions that assure a conviction…then the COA continually affirms the convictions…..Where is there Justice?

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