KNOX PROSECUTOR GUILTY. Guiliano Mignini, the Perugian head prosecutor in the Meredith Kercher trial who put Arbor Heights UW student Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito behind bars, was himself convicted of abuse of power in Florence Jan. 22.
Amanda Knox head prosecutor charged with 'abuse of power'
Just five days prior to the Amanda Knox fundraiser at the Comedy Underground, the head prosecutor who convicted her of murder was himself convicted for his mishandling of a separate murder case.
Giuliano Mignini, who prosecuted Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito in Perugia, Italy for the murder of Knox’s college roommate, Meredith Kercher, was found guilty in the Florence Court Jan. 22 of illegal phone tapping, abuse of high office, and dereliction of duty in connection with highly publicized "The Monster of Florence" serial killer case in Italy.
Mignini wiretapped journalists, newspapers, police and legal authorities, mostly in Florence and Rome during his investigation of the serial killings. He had threatened lawsuits and investigations against journalists who questioned his investigation in the case. Mignini has been sentenced to 16 months jail time, but his sentence may be suspended.
While it is too soon to determine if the verdict against Mignini will better position Knox and Sollecito to be released during their appeal, some media outlets report that the court may take a second look at Mignini’s methods in the Knox case and search for red flags, including the possibility of the prosecution’s leaking false information about Knox to the press.
“The Florentine prosecutor asked for 10 months of prison for Mignini, but the judge felt his crimes were so severe he gave him 16 months instead,” said Douglas Preston, in a phone interview with the West Seattle Herald.
Preston, an American, and his Italian writing partner, Mario Spezi, wrote the best-selling book “The Monster of Florence” and were indicted for perjury by Mignini and accused of being involved in the serial killings because, as they see it, their own investigation contradicted Mignini’s and embarrassed him. Tom Cruise is currently in production filming a movie based on the book.
“There is absolutely no way to spin this in Mignini’s favor,” Preston said. “This is truly an embarrassment in Italy.
“Mignini threatened small newspapers and local journalists with lawsuits and investigations, but he did not go after Timothy Egan who attacked him in his New York Times articles.”
Egan is the Times’ Pulitzer Prize winning Northwest correspondent in Seattle, and wrote opinion pieces in support of Knox and Sollecito in the June 12 and Dec. 12 Opinion Page of the New York Times.
“But he went after (author) Joe Cottonwood who attacked him on his blog.”
And of course he went after Preston and Spezi.
Preston said that Mignini announced in court that he dropped his charges against Preston but continued to state that Preston was involved with the serial killing.
“His pattern of abuse, and what Spezi was convicted for is quite evident in the Knox case,” said Preston. “It certainly does cast a pall in his accusations in the case against Amanda Knox.”