Statements of Rudy Guede

[Dichiarazioni di Rudy Guede, pp. 35-41; translated by teddypots, a.k.a Newcomer]

As surprising as it may seem, Rudy Guede has never been questioned during the present trial about the facts that occurred on the night between 1st and 2nd November 2007 on Via Della Pergola: neither previously under C.P.P. Article 210, nor afterwards under C.P.P Article 197 bis, so that, regardless of his reliability or otherwise, no statements exist in this capacity concerning the main facts of the trial.

The first time that Rudy Guede appeared before the Corte di Assise during the criminal proceedings against Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito was only when, after having seen the defense of the accused admit to this Court as witnesses Mario Alessi and other prisoners, in relation to what was revealed to them in prison by Rudy Guede about the two defendants’ [Knox and Sollecito] non-involvement [estraneità] in the act of the crimes for which they have been charged [chiamati a rispondere], the General Prosecutor requested that he be heard as a rebuttal witness [a prova contraria] on such alleged disclosures [confidenze]. The General Prosecutor, it should be said, did not request the admission of Rudy Guede so that he could respond regarding the facts of that night (if he was alone or together with the defendants or with others, what was the real unfolding of events in its details, etc…) but only to prove that he had not made to Mario Alessi and the other fellow prisoners any disclosure [confidenza].

Despite the admission of Rudy Guede as a witness limited to such facts (alleged disclosures in prison), the defense tried, given the presence finally of Rudy Guede at a hearing (hearing of 6.27.2011) before the Court and the defendants, to ask some questions directly regarding the facts of that night and not only concerning the alleged disclosures made to fellow prisoners.

But, in truth, even before the same Rudy Guede could assert that he did not want to respond on the facts of that night, the attorney that represented the aforementioned [Guede], Ms. Saccarelli, and the General Prosecutor (even if, having spoken off-microphone, his words are not found in the transcripts), to which the lawyer for the civil party Maresca gave full support, reminding [the court] of the limits of the cross-examination, they objected to the formulation of questions concerning directly the facts that occurred that night rather than merely the interactions [rapporti intrattenuti] with Alessi and the other prisoners, called to testify (Castelluci, De Cesare, Trincia).

It is sufficient to report an excerpt of the transcript to understand this:

“…DEFENSE ATTY. BONGIORNO – Your Honor, there is one thing to say, that since we’ve just listened to a reading [sentito dare lettura], [where] a letter has been read out which explicitly accuses my client and Amanda, [and] I’m doing a cross-examination, I believe it is at least my right to say to Mr. Guede, after years of pursuing him, whether he wants to recount to us the truth about this homicide.

WITNESS – Can I respond? Well, in the way the letter was read out I think I’m here today to respond in criminal proceedings on the statements, the false statements of Mario Alessi and therefore, like it’s written in the letter, everything that I had to say I’ve already said it to the Judges, to the Public Ministers, to my lawyer, therefore I don’t intend to respond on this topic….

GENERAL PROSECUTOR – …Can I make one clarification? The witness has just said that he doesn’t intend to respond to questions related to the homicide, it’s pointless for the defense to persist hoping that he might be distracted on this decision…”.

But actually, any statements made by Rudy Guede on the facts of that night could not be used against the current defendants, in consideration of the principle of Article 111, paragraph 3, of the Constitution (right [facoltà] of the person accused of a crime to question in front of the judge or to have questioned the persons that make statements on his behalf) and the prohibition enforced by the same Article 111, paragraph 4, of the Constitution and of C.P.P. Article 526, paragraph 1 bis (the guilt of the defendant cannot be proved on the basis of statements made by someone who, by choice, has always voluntarily avoided examination by the accused or his counsel). And, in this context [sotto questo profilo], the statements contained within the letter must be considered within the scope of this prohibition, confirmed by the person [sottoscritta dal soggetto] who declines to respond to questions from the defendant or defense counsel [difensore] on the facts in the letter presented, since this prohibition accommodates the same defense need, protected by the law [norma] and guaranteed constitutionally.

But in any case, regardless of the formal obstacle, it should be observed, in substantive terms [sotto il profilo sostanziale], that, in order to confirm that Rudy Guede had not made any disclosures to Alessi and the other prisoners, the General Prosecutor asked Rudy Guede if he confirmed having written the letter, in which are implicated the current defendants as the perpetrators of the crime, and it is also true that Rudy Guede confirmed it, explaining to have written the letter as a reaction to the alleged – and according to him non-existent – disclosures made in prison to Alessi and the others.

But, apart from the consideration that to confirm a written letter to one’s own attorneys is certainly not the same as responding to some precise questions on facts of the case, it should be noted that from the responses, given at the hearing of Rudy Guede, it is evident [risulta] that he has not implicated [indicato in] Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito as the perpetrators of the crime having seen them personally in the act of committing it, but only because this is and has always been a thought of his. Quoting from the transcripts:

“…DEFENSE ATTY. DALLA VEDOVA – And so, Mr. Guede, when you write the text that it was “a horrible murder of the wonderful marvelous girl that was Meredith by Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox” what do you mean exactly? Had you ever said this?

WITNESS – Well this, I never said it explicitly in this manner however I always thought it.

DEFENSE ATTY. DALLA VEDOVA – So why did you write it?

WITNESS – I wrote it because it was a thought that I’ve always had [che è sempre stato dentro di me, lit. “that has always been inside me”].

DEFENSE ATTY. DALLA VEDOVA – But then it’s not true.

WITNESS – No it is absolutely true [verissimo].

DEFENSE ATTY. DALLA VEDOVA – And can you elaborate better? What does that mean?

WITNESS – It’s absolutely true.

DIFENSE AVV. DALLA VEDOVA – Do you confirm this fact [circostanza]? By [da parte]?

WITNESS – Well, I with the … well, like I told you earlier, this is a thought that I’ve always had in my head, it’s a thought that in any case in the end I decided to put in written form after hearing certain absurdities, in my opinion [secondo me] and I [get to] take on all the responsibilities [on] hearing a puppet manipulated by certain people, that’s all. Therefore if I wrote those words it’s because they are [real], I’ve always had them inside of me. It’s not up to me to decide who it is that killed Meredith, I in the statement that I made in my trial I always said who was there on that cursed night in that house, therefore I don’t think that I’m saying anything new, I just put in writing my thoughts and I made them tangible [concreta], that’s all. Therefore I don’t see what other questions I should respond to…”.

So, also in substantive terms [sotto il profilo sostanziale], the indication of responsibility contained in the letter submitted does not represent the result of an account described in detail of a real story, witnessed [constatata] by the author [Guede] and reported in its particulars, but only the expression of a personal conviction, based on evidence unknown to us [basati su quali elementi non è dato sapere], there being an absence of statements made in this trial by Rudy Guede.

But, moreover, the Corte di Assise in the verdict of 12.22.2009 declared it could not accept the version of events provided [ricostruzione della vicenda operata] in that trial by Rudy Guede because “… -– in the half-truths that evolved over time [formazione progressive] coming from the mouth of the accused, his account was often filled with surreal lies, lying even on minute details (for example, in the interrogation by the Public Minister he denies being known with the nickname of the baron, and yet in the Skype conversation with his friend Benedetti, page 83 transc., he had explained that the basketball friends called him the baron for his likeness with the player Barron Davis), resulting in a version that is completely incompatible with the reality of facts perceived and heard…”.

Also the Corte di Assise di Appello that judged Rudy Guede, therefore, though reaching a different conclusion regarding the conspiracy with Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito (not involved, however, in that judgment) considered Rudy Guede to be an unreliable person, and this certificate of unreliability [patente di inattendibilità] can be [considered] confirmed in light of his conduct in the current trial, where he confirms writing the letter, in which he implicated Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito as the perpetrators of the crime and, however, in an entirely ambiguous way: instead of providing details, he refuses to respond on the facts of that night, affirming that this has always been his thought and that “…it’s not up to me to decide who murdered Meredith…”.

Amongst the elements against the two defendants, therefore, the testimony given at the hearing of 6.27.2011 by Rudy Guede and the content of the letter written by him and sent to his attorneys cannot be considered, as they are unreliable.

On the contrary, the content of the chat between Rudy Guede and his friend Giacomo Benedetti on the day of 11.19.2007, heard also by the police,  can be considered in favor of the two defendants.

Regarding the use of the transcript of that chat, listened to by the Police with the agreement of the friend of Rudy Guede, Benedetti, it should be noted that it is a document filed in the court records [acquisito agli atti] with the consensus of all parties and not against any standard of positive law [norma di diritto positive], as revealed by the Corte di Assise di Appello that tried Rudy Guede, especially since, in the case under examination, these statements are not being used against the person who made them, obtained possibly [in ipotesi] in violation of a defendant’s rights, but, on the contrary, are being used in favor of the two defendants and coming from a third party, so that a violation of defendant’s rights concerning the third party would have no relevance. With regard to the two current defendants, the content of the chat assumes relevance as a mere historical fact and not as a means of investigation [of them].

And so, during this chat with the friend, when he was still abroad, where he had fled after the crime [fatto], Rudy Guede does not implicate in any way Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito as perpetrators of the crime. And in that moment, because he was abroad, and therefore in a certain way safe, or because he was convinced he was conversing just with a friend, perhaps his only real friend, he would not have had any reason to keep quiet on such a matter. Which leads us to believe, being himself, on the contrary, certainly a perpetrator, alone or with others (here it does not matter), of the crimes committed on Via Della Pergola, that if Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito had also participated, he would have in that moment revealed it to his friend.

Nor can one assume that to keep quiet a fact of that kind, even hypothetically, could have been due to a need to distance himself from the suspects to try to avoid finding himself also involved, since, being already aware that in that moment they had already been arrested, he would not have had reason to nurture the hope that, remaining silent during the conversation with the friend, he could in some way affect the legal situation [situazione processuale] of the other two and, so, improve his own personal situation, having reason, on the contrary, to fear that they, if really present with him in Via della Pergola, would have been able, being by now arrested, accuse him and only him of committing the crime in an attempt to exonerate themselves, perhaps recognizing their own presence in that house but nevertheless [asserting] their non-involvement [estraneità] in committing the crime. With the result that he would have had interest in attributing to them, in that chat with the friend, the responsibility for what happened on Via Della Pergola: this is why the Rudy Guede of the chat seems more credible and this is why Rudy not having attributed to them, in the chat, the responsibility for the homicide represents an element of a certain reliability in favor of the current defendants.

In that chat, also, Rudy Guede confirms having been on Via Della Pergola between the hours 9:00 pm and 9:30 pm; which, significantly putting back the time of death of Meredith Kercher compared to that claimed in the ruling being appealed, does not accord with the prosecution’s hypothesis against the current defendants that, even if we were to find credible some evidence brought by the prosecution to sustain its own hypothesis, at that time they were certainly at the house of Raffaele Sollecito and not on Via Della Pergola. Also on this point Rudy Guede, despite his tendency to lie, would not have had any reason to do so: once he had confessed to the friend that he was in any case present in the house on Via Della Pergola at the moment of the crime, even in the case he were not responsible, he did not have any need to bring forward the time of the crime [consumazione] to 9/9:30 pm.

Instead, the subsequent statements made by Rudy Guede (in the current trial, however, not usable for reasons explained) appear less credible, being made in a different context from that of the first disclosures to a friend, when defensive strategies or even a mere desire to improve his image [rivalsa sociale] could have induced him to describe a different version from that really experienced.

Next: Witness Statements of Alessi, Aviello, Castellucio, De Cesare, Trincan