Amanda Knox says Ghislaine Maxwell trial is giving her flashbacks to her own case

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Amanda Knox (AFP via Getty Images)
Amanda Knox (AFP via Getty Images)

Amanda Knox has said that the Ghislaine Maxwell and Elizabeth Holmes trials are giving her “flashbacks” to her 2007 murder trial.

Ms Knox was wrongfully convicted of the murder of her 21-year-old roommate, British exchange student Meredith Kercher. She spent around four years incarcerated in Italy for the crime.

Ms Knox was acquitted in 2015, but wrote on Monday that she can “empathise and sympathise” with Ms Maxwell and Ms Holmes, who are both on trial on opposite ends of the US.

Writing in an opinion piece for Common Sense on the fact “we can't look away from female villains”, Ms Knox explained that she isn’t convinced by Ms Maxwell’s defence – that she was coerced by the late paedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein into sex trafficking.

Ms Holmes, meanwhile, faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted for fraud, and knowingly tricking investors about Theranos’ blood test technology, which prosecutors claim she knew was bogus. She is also claiming that a man, her older boyfriend Sunny Balwani, coerced her.

“I know very well what it’s like to be scapegoated for a man’s crimes and to be a victim of true coercion,” wrote Ms Knox.

“They told me I had amnesia, that I would never see my family again if I didn’t ‘remember the truth’, said Ms Knox of the police questioning her about Kercher’s murder. “They slapped me, they prompted me into confused and incoherent speculation. In the end, I signed statements authored and typed up by the police – statements that implicated myself and others in the crime.”

She writes how experts have told her that false admission is textbook behaviour by certain officials, but that “most people have so much trouble imagining what it’s like to be psychologically coerced into acting against their will”.

Commenting on Ms Maxwell’s case, Ms Knox continued that while she understands what the defendant is experiencing, and “if Epstein were still alive – if the chief culprit were still around for us to hate – there’s no doubt Maxwell’d be subject to much less vitriol,” but suggest the “evidence against her is pretty damming”.

“While it’s true that even powerful women can yet remain subservient to powerful men, we shouldn’t forget that the most vulnerable people in these equations are not Maxwell and Holmes, but the victims they are trying to brush aside or discredit.”

In Ms Knox’s case, the actual killer of Meredith Kercher was Rudy Guede, who broke into her home then raped and killed her, leaving bloodstained fingerprints and DNA at the scene. Guede was found guilty in 2008, and was released from prison on 24 November after serving the majority of his 16-year sentence.

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