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Who is Patrick Lumumba in the Amanda Knox case?


Disclaimer: This article contains mentions of murder. Reader discretion is advised.

Patrick Lumumba was a local Congolese bar owner in Perugia, Italy, and Amanda Knox’s employer at the time of the murder of her roommate Meredith Kercher. According to AP News, Knox worked part-time at Lumumba’s bar in the university town. Knox lived with Kercher, a 21-year-old student at the University of Leeds. They were exchange students. Kercher was later found dead in her bedroom partially nude in November 2007 with her throat slit. The killer(s) also sexually assaulted the victim and stabbed her multiple times.

Amanda Knox and her then-boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, were charged in the death of Meredith Kercher. The case resulted in the conviction of Knox and Sollecito two years later, along with a third person, Rudy Guede. Furthermore, during the legal saga, Knox blamed her employer, Lumumba, for the crime when police questioned her. Authorities subsequently arrested Lumumba and he spent two weeks in jail, authorities said BBC.

The outlet stated that at the time of her first conviction, Amanda Knox had also been convicted of defamation for falsely accusing Patrick Lumumba. The case took a turn when Knox and Sollecito were acquitted in 2011, but the country’s Supreme Court overturned them. They were subsequently convicted again on appeal in 2014. The Italian Supreme Court ultimately acquitted them of all charges over the 2015 murder of Meredith Kercher. CNN.

However, the defamation conviction and three-year prison sentence remained. Amanda Knox faced a new defamation trial from Patrick Lumumba and an appeals court in Florence convicted her again on the charges on June 5, 2024.

A Netflix documentary, Amanda Knox, details the infamous murder case and the years-long legal saga. The Murder of Meredith Kercher is another film that looks at the murder of Amanda Knox’s roommate.

What had Amanda Knox accused Patrick Lumumba of?

AP News reported that during the initial investigation into Meredith Kercher’s death, Amanda Knox accused Patrick Lumumba of the murder. She made statements to police as they interrogated her, which resulted in Lamumba’s subsequent arrest. Lumumba, owner of a local Congolese bar where Knox worked part-time, spent two weeks in jail. Knox later claimed in court that police pressured her to make these allegations against the bar owner.

CNN declared that an appeals court in Perugia had overturned the murder convictions of Knox and Raffaele Sollecito in 2011. The acquittal came after an independent review of key forensic evidence in the murder case. However, the Italian Supreme Court overturned the acquittal in 2013, after which a Florentine appeal convicted them again in 2014. The country’s Supreme Court only acquitted them of all charges in 2015.

The conviction for defamation and the associated three-year prison sentence had remained. Later, the European Court of Human Rights overturned Amanda Knox’s defamation conviction in November 2023, per AP News. The court ruled that the interrogation was a violation of Knox’s rights as authorities questioned her without a lawyer or qualified translator present. The Italian Supreme Court had ordered a new trial on the case.

Amanda Knox has now been convicted again of defamation for falsely accusing Patrick Lumumba. BBC stated that Knox remembered the interrogation and claimed that the “police threatened me with 30 years in prison.” She claimed that an “officer hit me three times and said, ‘Remember, remember.’”

Knox added: “I am very sorry that I was not strong enough to withstand the pressure from the police. I never wanted to slander Patrick (Lumumba). He was my friend. He cared for me and comforted me with the loss of my friend (Meredith). I am sorry that I could not withstand the pressure and that he suffered.”

Despite her recent conviction, Knox will not serve any prison time, the newspaper reported BBC. She had already served four years in prison after her first conviction for the murder of Meredith Kercher.

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