Raffaele Sollecito, the former boyfriend of Amanda Knox who was initially jailed alongside her over the murder of British student Meredith Kercher in Italy, has spoken out about his experiences in a rare new interview.
Ms Kercher, a 21-year-old exchange student, was found dead in the flat in Perugia she shared with Ms Knox, her American roommate, in 2007. Her throat had been cut and she had been stabbed 47 times.
Ms Knox and Mr Sollecito were found guilty of murder in 2009, but Italy’s highest court quashed their convictions and they were released in 2015. Rudy Guede, who was also found guilty after being tried separately in 2008, was freed from prison in 2021 after serving about 13 years of his 16-year sentence.
Now, Mr Sollecito has been interviewed for the upcoming Paramount+ documentary Who Murdered Meredith Kercher?, which says he still suffers discrimination and remains “haunted” about what happened.
Speaking about Ms Kercher’s family, he says in a clip: “It’s very hard when somebody you care about is lost forever. But the truth is that I don’t have anything to do with this murder. So I hope one day they will accept it.”
Ms Kercher’s father John died in 2020 after being involved in a suspected hit-and-run. Her family have said they might never know what happened to her leading up to her death.
Ms Knox and Mr Sollecito, who have always maintained their innocence, were the subject of worldwide headlines following the murder.
Mr Sollecito told producers his release from prison was “bittersweet”, adding: “Four years in prison. Six months of solitary confinement. And still today, I feel that bitterness. Even though I moved on with my life.”
Following his acquittal, he told a news conference he had been accused of “being an assassin without an element of proof”.
Documentary makers say the new programme will “get to the heart of the tragedy that became one of the most infamous and misunderstood crimes of all time”.
Addressing allegations that Ms Kercher’s murder was a sex game that went wrong, Mr Sollecito says this was “another made up scenario… I was knowing a pretty girl [Amanda]. I was so happy. Why should I do something so hideous to a 20-year-old girl, who I barely know for no reason, for no real motive?”
He also questions Guede’s separate trial, saying: “There was no reason to separate his case.”
Guede, who has denied killing Ms Kercher, was originally convicted in a fast-track trial procedure. He was initially sentenced to 30 years but later appealed and his term was reduced.
In 2017, he was refused permission to appeal against his conviction.
Ms Knox returned to Italy for the first time in 2019, breaking down in tears as she spoke at a criminal justice conference.
Who Murdered Meredith Kercher? will air on Paramount+ from 25 August.