Raffaele Sollecito seeks $545,000 in compensation for wrongful imprisonment. Sollecito, Amanda Knox’s ex-boyfriend, is seeking damages after spending nearly 4 years in jail over the murder of his former flame’s roommate, according to NBC News.
Sollecito and Knox were cleared last March of the murder of British exchange student Meredith Kercher in 2007. Raffaele’s lawyer Giulia Bongiorno said that her client has applied for the maximum possible amount of compensation allowed under Italian law.
Raffaele Sollecito’s $545,000 compensation claim will decided by a court in Tuscany. But this isn’t the only time he sought money.
In October, the 32-year-old computer studies graduate was given $47,000 to start his own business by the regional government in Puglia after he won a competition for unemployed youths. Sollecito said he had come up with the idea for the social network, called Memories, during his four-year wrongful imprisonment, when he was unable to visit the grave of his dead mother.
“Being so far away from her was causing me a lot of pain,” he said. “So Memories was born out of this.” The site will allow people to leave messages for family and friends who have passed away.
Sollecito, who now wears his hair in a pony tail, lives in the Puglian town of Bisceglie on the Adriatic coast with his father and stepmother. Raffaele said he was enjoying getting back to normality after his “incredible and grotesque” experience in the courts — a see-sawing legal process which lasted more than seven years.
“With them [my father and stepmother] I feel at my most calm,” he said. “My dad’s kiss every morning, the words of Mara who tells me that my things are clean and ironed in my draws. Normality. Finally I’m free to go out and live like other guys of my age.”
Sollecito, 32, and Knox were first convicted in December 2009 despite telling a trial that they had been together at his apartment in Perugia on the night half-naked Kercher was stabbed to death.
They were later acquitted and freed in 2011. An appeals court overturned those acquittals in 2013 and ordered a new trial which led to a conviction, which itself was then later overturned.
One of Knox’s defense lawyers, Carlo Dalla Vedova, told a reporter after their acquittal that she would also “be seeking compensation for wrongful imprisonment.”
Raffaele Sollecito’s $545,000 compensation isn’t an odd request to the courts. Most people who have been wrongly imprisoned have sought legal damages.