Amanda Knox could be sent back to Italy

7:24 PM, Mar 26, 2013   |    comments
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By Jill Dougherty, CNN

Amanda Knox is facing a life-changing question: will she be forced to return to Italy?

On Tuesday Italy's Supreme Court revived the murder case against the American woman and her one-time boyfriend. They were convicted then acquitted of murdering Knox's roommate in 2007.

Amanda Knox has been back in Seattle for a year and a half, trying to live a normal life.

So, does today's decision mean she has to return to Italy?

"The question of whether she would have to go back to Italy for a trial will come down to how the extradition treaty between the United States and Italy is construed," said former federal prosecutor David Laufman.

Laufman says if Amanda Knox had been convicted and acquitted in the United States she'd be protected by "double jeopardy" which prevents a defendant from being tried for the same crime twice.

But, it happened in Italy, which has a more flexible legal system. So Italy could, he says, ask the United States to extradite her.

"Now, that doesn't mean the United States is necessarily going to extradite her. There will likely ensue a fevered dialogue between Justice Ministry officials in Italy and Department of State lawyers, maybe Department of Justice lawyers, possibly to even head off a formal extradition request," said Laufman.

In other words, a diplomatic, and ultimately, political solution.

But Amanda Knox's attorney, Ted Simon, is hoping any new trial would end up with the same verdict, acquittal.

"There's no reason to believe that any further review will result any differently. Keep in mind, there was no physical evidence against her, and anything that was reviewed was considered unreliable, inaccurate, insubstantial," said Simon.


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