Amanda Knox could be extradited back to Italy to face murder charges for the death of her former roommate, Meredith Kercher.
The question of extradition comes after the Italian Supreme Court ruled that Knox and her Italian ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito should not be acquitted of murder.
Instead, the court ruled that the pair should be re-tried for the murder. But experts disagree on whether Amanda Knox will be extradited to Italy to face a murder trial again.
The case against Amanda Knox will be reheard in front of a new appeals court in Florence. It will take place either later this year or in early 2014. Knox and Sollecito were both convicted in 2009 in a trial that deeply divided public opinion. However, they were later acquitted by an appeals court jury in 2011.
Prosecutors and lawyers for Kercher’s family challenged the acquittal in the Supreme Court. The possibility of extraditing Amanda Knox will come if the court finds her guilty. The Seattle, Washington resident released a statement after the ruling, saying that she does not plan on returning to Italy to attend the hearings. Knox added:
“No matter what happens, my family and I will face this continuing legal battle as we always have, confident in the truth and with our heads held high in the face of wrongful accusations and unreasonable adversity.”
It will be interesting to see if the United States grants the extradition request for Amanda Knox. Under US law, a person may only be tried for murder in a specific case once. If that person is acquitted, they cannot be tried again. The concept is called double jeopardy. Because of this, experts disagree on whether Amanda Knox will be extradited or not.
When Knox was first acquitted in 2011, Mark Toner, the US deputy State Department spokesman, stated that the US and Italy have an extradition treaty. However, he could not say if the treaty would be applied to Knox.
State Department Acting Deputy Spokesman Patrick Ventrell stated on Tuesday that he would not comment on the case because the Italian Supreme Court’s full ruling was not yet released. He added, “We never talk about extradition from this podium in terms of individual cases.”
It is not clear if Amanda Knox would see extradition if she is found guilty of Meredith Kercher’s murder.