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Italian court turns down Amanda Knox request

Fri., Oct. 9, 2009, 1:52 p.m.

ROME — The Italian court hearing the trial of former University of Washington student Amanda Knox has turned down a request for further testing on a knife believed to be a murder weapon.

After the ruling Friday the court set two days of closing arguments to begin Nov. 20, according to one of Knox’s attorneys, Luciano Ghirga. The trial began in January.

Another lawyer, Francesco Maresca, who is representing the family of the victim in the case, said the court ruled there is no need for further testing. Defense lawyers had argued DNA on the knife could have been contaminated.

The 22-year-old Seattle woman and her Italian former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito are accused of stabbing her roommate, British student Meredith Kercher, nearly two years ago in what began as a sex game at their apartment in the university town of Perugia.

Another man, Rudy Hermann Guede, was convicted of the murder in a separate trial last year and sentenced to 30 years.

According to the prosecutors, Sollecito held Kercher by the shoulders while Knox touched her with a knife. They say Guede tried to sexually assault Kercher and then Knox fatally stabbed her in the throat.

Italian news reports said the defense had also requested more tests to confirm the exact time of the death.

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