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Monday, December 6, 2021

Meredith Kercher: Student’s killer Rudy Guede ends sentence


Rudy Guede, convicted of the 2007 murder of UK exchange student Meredith Kercher, has finished his sentence early saying he wants to be forgotten.

Guede, 34, was the only person imprisoned in connection with the infamous sexual assault and murder in Perugia, central Italy.

Amanda Knox, Meredith Kercher’s American flatmate, and her Italian boyfriend were both initially convicted.

Their case was dragged through the courts for years before they were acquitted on appeal.

Guede’s original 30-year sentence was reduced to 16 years, and he has spent the last year performing community service.

The Ivorian national was scheduled to be released in January, but magistrates in Viterbo, where he now resides, granted him an early release.

On Tuesday, his lawyer told the BBC that he had received notification that his prison sentence had been completed.

“My first thoughts are with Meredith Kercher’s family, who have been confronted by this painful affair,” Fabrizio Ballarini, the lawyer, told Italian media.

Francesco Maresca, a Kercher family lawyer, stated that while Guede had served his sentence, there was a moral issue with the length of the sentence.

“From a moral standpoint, of concrete and effective justice, clearly the term he served was very low in comparison to the tragic nature of the event,” he said, according to Ansa.

Ms Kercher, from Coulsdon in south London, had been in Perugia on an exchange from Leeds University for three months when she was killed. She was studying modern history, political theories, and film history.

Her family has been fighting for the truth since her death. Six years ago, her sister Stephanie predicted that they would never know the truth.

Rudy Guede’s fingerprints were found at the scene of the murder

Guede left Perugia and went to Germany in the days following Ms Kercher’s murder.

He chose a fast-track trial, held in a closed session without journalists present, after his bloodstained fingerprints were identified at the scene, and was subsequently convicted of the murder.

He maintains, however, that he did not murder Ms Kercher.

In 2017, he was granted partial prison release, and his lawyer told local media that his client was “calm and socially well integrated.”

Guede has volunteered for the charity Caritas and worked as a librarian at the Viterbo criminological studies centre in the last year, according to Italian media.

Claudio Mariani, a teacher at the centre, told Ansa that numerous media outlets had requested interviews with Guede, but that he “wants to be forgotten by the world.”

Ms Knox and her then-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were convicted of Ms Kercher’s murder separately in 2009.

Their arrests and subsequent convictions drew international attention. They were imprisoned for four years before their convictions were overturned.

After a series of appeals and retrials, Italy’s highest court finally acquitted them both in March 2015.

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