Death in Perugia: The Definitive Account

Death in Perugia: The Definitive Account

Postby Grayhawker » Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:44 am

It was immediately clear to detectives who attended the crime scene that a burglary had been faked. ...too high for a burglar and the broken glass was on top of, rather than underneath, the flat's ransacked contents. No burglar, detectives thought, would have locked Kercher's room. ...her behaviour as detectives watched her was bizarre in the extreme ... snapping at one of Kercher's friends, who had expressed the hope that Meredith didn't suffer, with the retort: "She fucking bled to death." ...narcissistic attention-seeker who was sexually adventurous but also jealous of Meredith Kercher's cheerful contentment ... At first she said she was there that fateful night; then that she wasn't. Pages of her diary were ripped out. Her phone, always on, had been switched off early that evening. Her DNA was found on the handle of a knife that also had Kercher's DNA on its blade. ... He had lied about when he had used his computer... Knox stopped laughing and clowning around in court. ... etc ... etc

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/oct/27/death-perugia-kercher-follain-review#post-area
Are you serious? This is an unbiased report? Factual?

Sorry, even just this much from the press release reads like a new by-line for Barbie Latza Nadeau.

Horrible book, just perpetuates the lies. I have to wonder if it can be considered intentional and be proved slanderous.
Paolo Micheli stated with regard to Amanda and Raffaele: "We do not need evidence, common sense and logic tell us that they dated each other to commit this crime."
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Re: Book - Death in Perugia: The Definitive Account

Postby Jstanz » Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:54 am

Grayhawker wrote:
It was immediately clear to detectives who attended the crime scene that a burglary had been faked. ...too high for a burglar and the broken glass was on top of, rather than underneath, the flat's ransacked contents. No burglar, detectives thought, would have locked Kercher's room. ...her behaviour as detectives watched her was bizarre in the extreme ... snapping at one of Kercher's friends, who had expressed the hope that Meredith didn't suffer, with the retort: "She fucking bled to death." ...narcissistic attention-seeker who was sexually adventurous but also jealous of Meredith Kercher's cheerful contentment ... At first she said she was there that fateful night; then that she wasn't. Pages of her diary were ripped out. Her phone, always on, had been switched off early that evening. Her DNA was found on the handle of a knife that also had Kercher's DNA on its blade. ... He had lied about when he had used his computer... Knox stopped laughing and clowning around in court. ... etc ... etc

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/oct/27/death-perugia-kercher-follain-review#post-area
Are you serious? This is an unbiased report? Factual?

Sorry, even just this much from the press release reads like a new by-line for Barbie Latza Nadeau.

Horrible book, just perpetuates the lies. I have to wonder if it can be considered intentional and be proved slanderous.


Unbiased and factual would be : "The detectives who attended the crime scene came to the conclusion (which was later ruled probably incorrect) that a burglary had been faked."
All my grammar and spelling mistakes are the result of auto-correct. If auto-correct is not used here, I still blame it.
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Re: Book - Death in Perugia: The Definitive Account

Postby Dougm » Thu Oct 27, 2011 9:23 am

Just that one passage from the first post should be an embarrassment to any fair minded person. This is the type of thing that got me involved in the case. If I did not know a single thing about this case, and I read that, my immediate reaction would be skepticism. I might accept that the window was too high, but I would like to see for myself. But the other stuff? Please!
When you berate someone and push them and confuse them and lie to them and convince them that they're wrong you're not finding the truth.

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Re: Book - Death in Perugia: The Definitive Account

Postby Jstanz » Thu Oct 27, 2011 9:53 am

Dougm wrote:Just that one passage from the first post should be an embarrassment to any fair minded person. This is the type of thing that got me involved in the case. If I did not know a single thing about this case, and I read that, my immediate reaction would be skepticism. I might accept that the window was too high, but I would like to see for myself. But the other stuff? Please!


This is the kind of stuff that keeps me interested in this case even now after they've been acquitted! Imagine what it would be like for Amanda and Raffaele if no one was defending them! If everyone just read this stuff and thought horrible things about them on the basis of lies and misinformation? I want to see these people pay for this stuff.
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Death in Perugia

Postby Sarah » Sun Oct 30, 2011 11:24 am

Death In Perugia
by John Follain
Discussion and Reviews
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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Dougm » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:09 pm

Good idea. I saw a review that sounded like it is badly skewed, but I read part of it on Amazon, and it did not seem as bad. Neither is enough to go on. Once I read it (looking for a discount), I will let you know what I think!
When you berate someone and push them and confuse them and lie to them and convince them that they're wrong you're not finding the truth.

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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Sarah » Sun Oct 30, 2011 5:28 pm

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REVIEWS / LINKS - FOR PLACES TO POST YOUR REVIEWS

Postby Sarah » Sun Oct 30, 2011 5:31 pm

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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Sarah » Mon Oct 31, 2011 12:44 pm

Problemo. Some 5 star reviews on Amazon of the book would help to counter Marriott’s campaign which has already begun there to try to mark it down to 2 or 1 stars.

It seems only those who already bought the book from Amazon can add reviews. Might some readers help out by posting positive reviews?

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/28/11 at 12:53 PM

-----------

Peter,

I don’t think only people who have bought the books from Amazon can post reviews there. I have posted reviews for products that I brought elsewhere (while mentioning that I did not purchase it from Amazon). It is true that you need to sign up but I am pretty sure anyone can register. Infact, when I logged in to my account and clicked on “create review”, it opened up alright but since I have not read the book yet, I could not post a review. I intend to do so soon. Are you saying there is some restriction which prevents you from actual submission?

If not, I request people who have read the book to please register with Amazon and post reviews. Already, people from AK’s camp have started posting negative reviews. It is pretty evident that they are from the support camp since most are from US (one is from Seattle in particular) and have just signed up to post this review with no other reviews to their name. If the book gets lot of negative reviews, people who do not know much about the case will be discouraged from buying it. It’s worth the hassle to sign up to prevent this.

Posted by Sara on 10/28/11 at 01:35 PM
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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Dougm » Mon Oct 31, 2011 12:48 pm

Sarah wrote:Problemo. Some 5 star reviews on Amazon of the book would help to counter Marriott’s campaign which has already begun there to try to mark it down to 2 or 1 stars.

It seems only those who already bought the book from Amazon can add reviews. Might some readers help out by posting positive reviews?

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/28/11 at 12:53 PM

-----------

Peter,

I don’t think only people who have bought the books from Amazon can post reviews there. I have posted reviews for products that I brought elsewhere (while mentioning that I did not purchase it from Amazon). It is true that you need to sign up but I am pretty sure anyone can register. Infact, when I logged in to my account and clicked on “create review”, it opened up alright but since I have not read the book yet, I could not post a review. I intend to do so soon. Are you saying there is some restriction which prevents you from actual submission?

If not, I request people who have read the book to please register with Amazon and post reviews. Already, people from AK’s camp have started posting negative reviews. It is pretty evident that they are from the support camp since most are from US (one is from Seattle in particular) and have just signed up to post this review with no other reviews to their name. If the book gets lot of negative reviews, people who do not know much about the case will be discouraged from buying it. It’s worth the hassle to sign up to prevent this.

Posted by Sara on 10/28/11 at 01:35 PM


Talk about a PR campaign! Telling people what to say about a book that most of them have not even read yet, I am sure!
When you berate someone and push them and confuse them and lie to them and convince them that they're wrong you're not finding the truth.

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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Sarah » Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:24 pm

Death in Perugia: John Follain, review
By Ed Cumming
5:48PM GMT 04 Nov 2011

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/book ... eview.html


On October 3, Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were acquitted, on appeal, of the murder of Meredith Kercher, a 21-year-old British student stabbed to death in her bedroom in Perugia on November 1, 2006. The announcement brought to a close one of the most gripping court cases of recent times.

In Italy, the decision was greeted with boos and jeers from a public who had come to see Knox as a depraved femme fatale. In America, it was seen as justice at last for a girl who had been treated badly because she had the misfortune to be beautiful. In Britain, the tabloids’ sadness that they would no longer be able to run daily pictures of “Foxy Knoxy” was qualified by a sense that there might be some closure for the Kercher family.

Though the court case is finished, we haven’t heard the last of the story. Knox is reportedly in negotiations to sell film rights, ostensibly to cover some of the legal fees she’s racked up. And there will be the usual rush of books, articles and television programmes purporting to give the whole story. This is the first since the acquittal, but the 11th so far and, as with any good match report, one presumes most of it was written before the final whistle.

John Follain is the Rome correspondent for The Sunday Times and this book is a mixture of his own interviews and the publicly available material. It brings together as much of the story as we know, beginning with Knox and Kercher’s arrival in Perugia and ending with Knox’s flight home to Seattle.

In a case as familiar as this has become, it is surprising to go over it from the start. We meet the blameless Meredith, an intelligent student who followed her love of Italy to study there for a year, despite the wrench of being away from her ill mother. We meet Sollecito, Knox’s weed-smoking, violence-fixated boyfriend. We meet Rudy Guede, the itinerant Ivorian who remains the only person convicted of the crime, now serving 16 years in prison. We meet the investigators: a mix of talented professionals, doing their best in trying circumstances, and incompetents, mucking up evidence-gathering and leaking salacious details to the press.


At the centre of it all is Knox, the eccentric daughter of a wealthy Seattle family, casting her shadow over the whole case. Just 19 at the time of the murder, she invites judgment as a lamp draws moths. Even Follain, for all his attempts at objectivity, occasionally lapses. About her Facebook page, he writes: “Amanda filled in the section 'Interested in’ with the single word: 'men’.” Anyone with a Facebook account will tell you that this is simply the pro forma way of expressing orientation, but in Follain’s hands it becomes a byword for licentiousness. He lingers on Knox’s oddities, such as her habit of doing impromptu yoga, as much as the story-changing which led to her original conviction with Sollecito in 2009.

Meredith’s family bear their grief with heartbreaking dignity, from the moment her father John learns his daughter is dead to the final acquittal. They turn down half a million pounds from a television channel for coverage of the funeral. They never get drawn into the ad hominem brawl of the coverage of Knox, or express any satisfaction other than that justice is being served.

At times the case seemed as if it had been dreamt up by a committee of tabloid hacks and Hollywood screenwriters: beautiful victim, beautiful city, beautiful suspects and a seedy undercurrent of sex and drugs. The question of guilt dogs the book as it did the trial. At times the circumstantial evidence, in particular their changing stories and strange behaviour the morning after, seems compelling. A witness claimed to see Knox queuing to buy bleach at 7.45am, and the couple kissed and cuddled even as the police arrived at the scene. But Sollecito was the only one of the pair connected to the crime scene by DNA, and there were significant flaws in the way the evidence was collected. Certainly enough for reasonable doubt.

At one point Follain describes Father Saulo, a priest assigned to keep Amanda company in jail. “He believed Amanda was sincere when she said she was innocent,” Follain writes. “But he refused to make up his mind on whether she was in fact innocent or guilty. He was certain that even if he read the thousands of pages of the investigation, he still wouldn’t be 100 per cent certain either way.”

It’s unlikely that Death in Perugia is the “definitive account”, as it claims on the cover. But it does a good job of reminding us that amid the reams of print and reel are human lives; some innocent and some guilty, but all irreparably disfigured by this horribly sad story.
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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Sarah » Sun Nov 13, 2011 10:29 pm

brmull
Sun Nov 13, 2011 11:13 pm

Be sure to review Follain's book on Amazon UK or elsewhere. This helps people who are new to the case, and counteracts the radical elements who are trying to rubbish the book.
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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA - DISCUSSION

Postby Sarah » Sun Feb 26, 2012 5:42 pm

Dr. David Anderson's review

John Follain. Death in Perugia; the definitive account or not?, February 26, 2012
By David Anderson - See all my reviewsThis review is from: Death in Perugia: The Definitive Account of the Meredith Kercher Case from Her Murder to the Acquittal of Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox (Paperback)
This is the book we have been promised by British tabloid journalist John Follain, since the end of the first trial and the conviction two years ago of Amanda Knox and her then boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito. Since then it was delayed seemingly ad perpetuam. But at last, after the final release from prison after four years of Amanda and Raffaele, I was able to buy and read a copy! It is a difficult book to review fairly, and I write as one who has closely read six other books on the subject (and given up on a seventh).

I find even the cover of his book, showing Amanda Knox in incredulous tears of joy in court at the declaration of her obvious innocence, juxtaposed with Hodder and Stoughton's final title, to be at best incongruous. I know that Follain still believes that Knox and Sollecito are guilty since he told me as much the day after their acquittal. "So you say, David, so you say", he said. My personal position, since I awoke to the injustice two years ago, is that this was always the most improbable amongst many unlikely hypotheses. As a European who lives in retirement in Italy, I then worked as hard as I could to help expose the injustice. Follain, on the other hand, was throughout so close to the Prosecution that he had to suffer the flushed embarrassment of a shoulder-squeezing benediction from Prosecutor Mignini as the latter left the Court after his final summing up in the Appeal! Earlier, the author had managed to be nominated for the Magazine Journalism Awards of 2008, for his interview with the Knox family for a Sunday Times article that - oopsy daisy - led to Mignini to sue Amanda's parents for calumny! While the Knoxes are still being prosecuted by Mignini, Follain and Rupert Murdoch's Sunday Times, have neatly dodged the fate they caused others less fortunate or less wealthy than they!!

The two young people were eventually declared innocent `because they did not commit the crime'. This is as innocent as you can get in Italy. So how does John Follain manage to write a book which suggests guilt while recording much of the sequence of events which led to their clear and unequivocal acquittal by a slow but finally as fair a review process as you get in medieval 21st century Italy? That has taxed me, and I still find it difficult to spot the tabloid maestro's slight of hand. So first let me address an easy question; is the book's title fair? Is it THE DEFINITIVE account?

The Prosecution case was constructed from the start around an extreme hypothesis. This was that two young lovers with no history of violence had engaged in a sex game and the gruesome killing of the girl's friend and flatmate with an Ivorian burglar they didn't know. They then covered their heinous crime by staging a break-in, and cunningly then `discovered' the crime and made it look as though they were trying to help the police. Since all of this was rejected as false on appeal, we have to accept it as nonsense. So what would the counter hypothesis be? Surely an investigative journalist for a tabloid of the calibre of the Sunday Times, should counter this by exploring in such a book as this the diametrically opposed explanation, even at the risk of also being sued for calumny? This is that a highly disturbed police and prosecutorial system, for reasons of its own, or even just out of sheer malice, chose to pin the crime on the nearest and softest available target(s), and then to reconstruct facts to support their theory. Follain must realise this wouldn't be the first or indeed the last case of criminal activities being conducted in the name of solving a crime?

Such a possible, indeed obvious, construction is not remotely touched upon in this book. What we have instead is a time line, but one which does not really tell us in words what the author believed or now believes. To be fair, parts of the book seem to be quite fairly written; these are like a calm patches between revelatory rapids, and both for me, as one seeking to understand the collective psychopathology of what really went on, are in their ways revealing. In the rapids he has enormously convenient but rocky blind spots, which he uses ruthlessly. To give you a feel for these, let me quote some sentences plucked verbatim from his book, concerning major elements for the prosecution. I find such insights very revealing, just because Follain was and still is so close to the cerebral functioning of the Prosecutors and the police. Thus we have......

Detective Superintendent Monica Napoleoni.....

'......For the first time in her career, Napoleoni found herself leading a major investigation when her boss Chiacciera, who had argued against arresting Patrick, Amanda, and Raffaele, dropped out of it - officially because he was too busy with other cases......
........She `liked to wear her silver shield-shaped badge as a pendant on a chain around her neck and occasionally tucked her semi-automatic ordnance pistol into a Louis Vuitton handbag'. ...
.........Delighted that Rudy had been caught but frustrated that she hadn't been the one who arrested him, Napoleoni and her colleagues turned their car round and headed back to Perugia.....
..........For her turn as a witness, the detective Napoleoni swapped the jeans and casual clothes she always wore on duty for her navy-blue police uniform........
........,(to lawyer for Lumumba, Carlo Pacelli) `Obviously she was treated firmly, because it wasn't as if we were at the cinema or the circus, even if someone thought we were' Napoleoni said, in a clear dig at Amanda's yoga exercises at the police station......
........(Kerchers in Court)- (they) watched from a back row where they sat next to the detective Napoleoni, who proudly wore her police badge on a chain around her neck......
........(Upon Amanda and Raffaele's conviction) - Meredith's father John embraced Mignini, then turned to Napoleoni; he hugged her, cupped her cheeks in his hands and then hugged her again.........-`Thank you for Meredith'; Stephanie said to her.'

Prosecutor Giuliano Mignini........

'......Autopsies didn't unsettle Mignini as they did several of his colleagues, and he didn't bother to wear a mask........
.......Mignini didn't hesitate. Some of his colleagues kept the police at arms length, simply giving them instructions and then waiting for the results, but Mignini wanted to be as closely involved as possible as if he was a detective himself.......
.......From the very time he'd looked into her bedroom his hunch had been that only a woman could have been so shaken by the sight of the victim as to seek to hide the body....... The DNA finding quickly became public.......
.........In a room at the Capanne prison, with Mignini as a silent observer, Rudy first described (to Judge Matteini) how he knew Amanda.....
.........Mignini had thought long and hard about the best way to tackle Amanda. Her greatest strength was her intelligence; her greatest weakness was her fragility......
.........'They were telling me I was guilty..After hours' -Amanda said and then broke off. She brought her hands up to her head and covered her ears - `that gesture again', Mignini thought to himself - and (she) started to cry. As Amanda wiped the tears away with her fingers, Mignini immediately made a point of requesting that the tears be noted for the record........
........Mignini was still seething as he strode out of prison. He had never carried out such a tense interrogation......
........In his spare time - he had none now - Mignini loved reading history books, especially tales of great battles ranging from those in ancient times to the Second World War, and in some ways he saw what awaited him in court as a battle......
.........Mignini rose and began his final request for the sentencing of the accused. Amanda was a narcissist, he said, who nurtured anger and was unusually aggressive. She manipulated people, indulging in theatricals and in transgressive behaviour. She had little empathy for others, suffered from `emotional anaesthesia', and had a tendency to dominate relationships in order to satisfy her immediate needs.......
.........(at the end of the first trial)..As soon as Mignini saw them he went up to kiss Arline and Stephanie on the cheeks, and to shake hands with Lyle..... '

Second Prosecutor, Manuela Comodi.......

'.......Comodi saw Amanda as the instigator. She was a charismatic figure, capable of influencing others, and she was the driving force who had drawn the group together, setting in motion the spiral of events......
..........The film was Comodi's idea..when she realised the film's potential, she decided to show the entire reconstruction. `For most people what you see on TV exists; what you don't see on TV doesn't exist'........
.........The junior prosecutor Comodi watched Amanda and Raffaele leave and suddenly thought to herself: `They're going to be convicted, I'm sure of it'. She then thought `How absurd, how terrible for two such young kids to have so many years in jail ahead of them.'....'

The Kercher's lawyer Francesco Maresca........

'......(Day 1 of the trial) Whatever the reason was, Amanda's smiles and laughs exasperated Maresca. `Let's see if either of them will be laughing when it's all over,' he remarked.........
........ On Valentine's day... (re the T-shirt with 'All you need is love' on it). Maresca could hardly contain his anger. `Amanda's gone too far. It's fine to declare yourself innocent all your life but there are limits. I can't stand this frivolous attitude. It's offensive to the court, and it's especially offensive to Meredith's family......
.........(after acquittal) Seeing her lawyer Maresca looking crestfallen, Arline asked him `Are you alright?' Maresca was amazed that she should be concerned about him at such a moment. `Yes, yes' he replied, `and you?'.....'

Meredith's friend Sophie Purton, (who Follain craftily quotes as a surrogate for his own unvoiced opinion) ........

.......One thing tormented Sophie, and she talked about it again with Meredith's other friends Amy and Robyn: was there anything they could have done that night to prevent Meredith being killed?.......
........(in court) From time to time, Sophie would close her eyes as she remembered aloud Amanda's coldness when she hugged her at the police station, or Amanda telling her Meredith had died.....
......... (for the acquittal) Sophie believed Amanda and Raffaele were guilty and was confident they would be convicted; she couldn't even imagine an acquittal........

These are just a small selection of Follain's fallacious textbites, from a book which reveals as much by what it doesn't say as by what it does. For me it provides great insight into the pathology behind a cunningly constructed and gross miscarriage of justice. Clearly two horses were backed, and 90% was written with two diametrically opposed possible endings, and these bits were not touched again after the appeal. This is by no means the definitive account of what really went on, but Follain does at times prove genuinely informative in those places where he lapses into fact as opposed to supposition and innuendo, and some of this is hard to find elsewhere. But the book mainly provides unique insight, which would only have been revealed to a journalist seen as `one of us', into the disturbed individual and collective psychopathology of all those who both prosecuted and persecuted in this case. Brains (ruthlessly aided by journalists such as Follain) that constructed, for dark reasons yet fully to emerge, a case against two perfectly normal youngsters, for what was in fact a horrendous but commonplace crime of break-in, sexual assault and murder carried out by one highly disturbed young man.

So please do not expect to find enlightenment from this book if you know nothing about the case. But if your understanding of this and of institutionalised evil is deeper than that, then at least borrow a copy.


http://www.amazon.com/Death-Perugia-Def ... Descending
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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA

Postby Clive Wismayer » Thu Mar 01, 2012 11:51 pm

That is a great review! It says exactly why Follain's book is well worth reading. It is far more valuable than Barbie's tripe, perhaps in ways not intended by the author.

No one should be afraid that it might change their minds - if you have spent any time trying to understand the case properly, it can't do that (not that changing one's mind is a bad thing, far from it) - and, as it's the guilters' bible, it's quite useful to know, and be able to rebut, the nonsense they continue to spout.
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Re: DEATH IN PERUGIA

Postby erasmus44 » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:14 am

anglolawyer wrote:That is a great review! It says exactly why Follain's book is well worth reading. It is far more valuable than Barbie's tripe, perhaps in ways not intended by the author.

No one should be afraid that it might change their minds - if you have spent any time trying to understand the case properly, it can't do that (not that changing one's mind is a bad thing, far from it) - and, as it's the guilters' bible, it's quite useful to know, and be able to rebut, the nonsense they continue to spout.


Whenever I get involved in an issue, I try to be careful to read both sides and when I am forming an opinion in one direction, I make a special effort to read everything on the other side very carefully. For example, I have a complete collection of global warming denier writings and have read them thoroughly. I have read Follain and Nadeau carefully and have found tidbits which actually support the innocence side of the case. Follain and Nadeau each got too close to their sources(I may have been guilty of this myself as a fledgling financial journalist) and became 'buddies" with the prosecutors and police and the English girls. This makes it very very hard to be objective; an objective book from Follain or Nadeau would give their sources the sense of betrayal that Jeff MacDonald felt in the McGuiness situation. It would also burn bridges and cut off further inside information that could be professionally ruinous. So these books are best understood as providing the viewpoint of those sources rather than an objective look at the case. On that level, it is useful to get some sense of how the police and Mignini appear to have gotten to the particular position that they reached. In addition, some of the internal gossip - the relationship between the Carabinieri and the Pollizia, the reason Napoleoni ran the case, Mignini's supposed regret at not establsihing a time of death, the extreme anxiety of the police that someone else would arrest and interrogate Guede, etc. is useful. There is nothing in either of these books which is at all persuasive evidence of guilt. In fact, it was after reading them both that I was absolutely convinced of innocence.
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