The British news, Telegraph.co.uk, reported today that a man has come forward claiming that his brother, Antonio Aviello, murdered Meredith Kercher in a botched robbery. Interestingly, Luciano Aviello, brother of the Antonio, claims that he notified police three times in 2007 and his evidence wasn’t deemed reliable.
Could this be a turning point in the Knox case? Mr. Aviello claims that his brother gave him a knife and keys to hide after he showed up at his home on November 1st, 2007.
Here is the article from the Telegraph.co.uk:
“The claim may offer fresh hope to Knox, who in December was convicted of murdering the British student and sentenced to 26 years in prison.
It will form part of an appeal that her lawyers are preparing and that is expected to be heard in the autumn in Perugia, Umbria, where the crime took place.
Luciano Aviello, 41, who is serving 17 years in jail after being convicted of being a member of the Naples-based Camorra mafia, claims that he has evidence that Miss Kercher was killed by his brother, Antonio.
He insists that the two men convicted alongside Knox of the murder – her Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, and Rudy Guede, a local drifter – are also innocent of the crime and should have their jail sentences of 25 years and 16 years quashed.
“It was my brother who killed Meredith on the night of November 1, 2007. Amanda, Raffaele and Guede are innocent,” Aviello told a weekly magazine, Oggi (“Today”).
“I know because my brother confessed to me and asked me to hide a blood-stained knife and a bunch of keys. I hid them underneath a wall, behind my house, covering them with soil and rubble.”
He claimed he could show investigators exactly where the knife and the keys were hidden.
Aviello wrote to court authorities in Perugia three times during the course of the murder investigation and subsequent trial, but his evidence was deemed unreliable.
Now, however, Knox’s defence team are demanding that it be heard as they put together an appeal which they hope could save her from spending much of her adult life behind bars.
In March, her lawyers, Carlo Dalla Vedova and Luciano Ghirga, visited Aviello in the prison near Turin where he is being held and videotaped a statement he made.
They want him to be admitted as a witness when the appeal gets underway.
“Why should he not be considered credible when the prosecution was allowed, during the trial, to call witnesses who turned out to be unreliable, to say the least?” said Mr Dalla Vedova.
The convicted mafioso is from Naples but was living in Perugia at the time of the murder.
He claims that his brother was staying with him in late 2007 and that one night he returned home with an injury to his right arm and his jacket covered in blood.
He alleged his brother and an Albanian man named Florio broke into the hillside cottage that Miss Kercher, 21, shared with Knox and two Italian women.
The Leeds University student was alone in the house, which sits on its own just outside the city’s ancient stone walls.
The men were looking to steal anything of value, but when Miss Kercher saw them, she started screaming.
According to this version of events, Antonio Aviello tried to silence her by putting his hand over her mouth but she resisted and he allegedly ended up fatally stabbing her.
It is not known what has motivated Aviello to point the blame at his brother, although defendants who cooperate with Italian police and prosecutors can often expect their jail sentences to be reduced.
Miss Kercher, of Coulsdon, Surrey, was found lying dead in a pool of blood in her bedroom on the morning of Nov 2, 2007.
Some of her clothes had been removed, and she had several deep stab wounds to her neck.
Antonio Aviello’s whereabouts are unknown.”
What are your thoughts on this turn of events? Do you think that the court in Perugia is so biased against Knox already that they will not seriously consider this new “evidence?” How does this impact students who are abroad and considering Italy as a destination? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.