Amanda Knox defends decision to not attend new appeal in Meredith Kercher trial

19:32 23 September 2013

Amanda Knox during an interview on NBC

Amanda Knox during an interview on NBC's "Today" show, where she defended her decision not to return to Italy for a new appeals trial over the 2007 killing of Meredith Kercher. Picture: AP Photo/NBC, Peter Kramer

Amanda Knox has defended her decision not to return to Italy for a new appeals trial over the 2007 killing of her roommate Meredith Kercher.

The 26-year-old American has acknowledged that ‘everything is at stake’ and insists she is innocent of the Londoner’s murder at their shared home in Perugia.

But she said in an interview on NBC: “I was already imprisoned as innocent person in Italy, and I can’t reconcile the choice to go back with that experience.

“I just can’t relive that.”

When asked if she was worried that she was handing prosecutors an admission of guilt by not attending the trial, she responded: “I look at it of an admission of innocence.”

Ms Knox said there was no trace of her in the room where 21-year-old Meredith Kercher, from Coulsdon, south Lodnon, was found with her throat slashed when the pair were both exchange students.

“It’s impossible for me to have participated in this crime if there’s no trace of me,” Ms Knox said.

In March, Italy’s supreme court ordered a new trial for Ms Knox and her Italian former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito.

An appeals court in 2011 had acquitted both, overturning convictions by a lower court, but the new appeals trial begins in Florence on September 30.

Ms Knox said school and finances also were keeping her from attending the trial.

She said she still had faith in the Italian legal system, adding: “I believe that people who really care about justice and look at this without prejudice will come to same conclusion.”

Still, she acknowledged that the prospect of returning to prison haunted her.

“I thought about what it would be like to live my entire life in prison and to lose everything, to lose what I’ve been able to come back to and rebuild,” she said.

“I think about it all the time. It’s so scary. Everything is at stake.”

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