World

Will Amanda Knox Be Extradited?

After Thursday's guilty verdict in an Italian court, the big question is whether Italy will push for extradition - and whether the U.S. will comply.

Will Amanda Knox Be Extradited?
NBC

An Italian judge found Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend guilty — for a second time — of killing Knox's former roommate in Italy in 2007. Now the question many are trying to answer: will Knox be extradited?

A Daily Beast writer says Italy's high court must first uphold Thursday's ruling, and Knox and former boyfriend Rafaelle Sollecito can't serve their sentences until that's done. But, she adds, "if the high court confirms their conviction, then [Knox] faces a possible extradition order that might be difficult to fight."

To extradite Knox, ABC reports Italy would have to submit a request to the U.S. Department of State and the DOJ's Office of International Affairs. That would then kick-off a lengthy extradition process.

A writer for The Seattle Times says Knox would get her day in a U.S. court. "Justice Department attorneys would evaluate the petition for legal sufficiency before deciding whether to seek an extradition certificate. If they did, Knox's extradition would be heard before a federal judge."

If a U.S. court approved Italy's request to extradite Knox, she and her lawyers could then appeal the decision. 

But a law professor told The New York Times there isn't a strong legal basis to prevent the extradition and it is "ultimately up to the American secretary of state, and that some sort of 'political decision' by the Italian or American governments could influence the outcome." 

The example of "some sort of political decision" brought up by several writers deals with reciprocity — the U.S. might want to honor Italy's extradition request in case the U.S. wants to extradite somebody from Italy in the future. 

But Knox has previously said she isn't going back willingly. She told NBC's Matt Lauer it would be nonsensical to go back to Italy after her experience being imprisoned there. 

In a statement released Thursday, Knox said "I am frightened and saddened by this unjust verdict. Having been found innocent before, I expected better from the Italian justice system.(Via Los Angeles Times)

The New York Times reports the court rejected a request to issue an arrest warrant for Sollecito, who is still in Italy, but ordered him to surrender his passport and barred him from leaving the country.