Rome

Sollecito confident of acquittal in Kercher murder retrial

Ex-student says feels condemned more by media than people

Sollecito confident of acquittal in Kercher murder retrial

Rome, November 13 - Raffaele Sollecito on Tuesday night told a television programme that he had confidence the outcome of a new trial for him and his ex-girlfriend Amanda Knox for the 2007 killing of British exchange student Meredith Kercher. ''I am facing this trial with confidence in the people who read the facts as they are...I continue to see that there are capable people, who extract the truth without being influenced by the idea put out by the media or by people who want to create a character,'' said Sollecito. Sollecito called in live to television channel La7's current affairs show 'Linea Gialla', which hosted his defense lawyer Luca Maori and the Kercher family's lawyer Francesco Maresca. ''I am doing this favour (of calling into the show) even if in reality I have decided to remain silent until the sentence is issued,'' Sollecito added. When asked if the Kercher case and trials have made him feel socially isolated, Sollecito said no. ''Those who know me, or who came to know me even afterwards, support me, because they see the absurdity of the accusations. I don't feel condemned by the people. But I feel condemned by the image and by a character that has been created, first by investigators and then by the media,'' Sollecito concluded. A week ago Sollecito complained of feeling persecuted in his first appearance at a retrial of the case ordered by Italy's top appeals court after Sollecito and Knox were acquitted in 2011. Sollecito asked the court to ''correct the errors'' of those who have condemned him. The retrial opened in Florence in September, and a sentence is expected in January. Knox has said she would remain in the US and not attend the new trial. Sollecito and his American ex-girlfriend were convicted in 2009 of the murder of Kercher, who was found dead on the floor of an apartment she shared with Knox in Perugia in November 2007. They both spent four years in prison, including the time before their first conviction, before each was acquitted on appeal in 2011. Earlier this year Italy's supreme Court of Cassation scrapped the 2011 decision by a Perugia appeals court quashing the 26-year and 25-year sentences that Knox and Sollecito were handed respectively at the original trial.

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