Murdered Leeds University student Meredith Kercher argued with convicted flatmate Amanda Knox over money on the night of her death, an Italian court has said.
And the wounds found on Miss Kercher’s body indicate multiple aggressors, it said.
The appellate court in Florence today issued a 337-page explanation for its January guilty verdicts against American Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito.
The court said that a third person convicted in the murder, Rudi Hermann Guede, did not act alone, and cited the nature of the victim’s wounds.
Miss Kercher, 21, was found dead in a pool of blood in 2007 in the apartment she and Knox shared in the town of Perugia.
The court noted that at least two knives were used to attack Miss Kercher, and imprints on her body indicate she had been restrained - ruling out the possibility that Guede was the only attacker.
The court said there was ample evidence of a bad relationship between the two room-mates, despite Knox’s attempts to play down differences in court, and cited statements by Guede under police questioning that Miss Kercher had accused Knox of taking money from her room.
The document said: “It is a matter of fact that at a certain point in the evening events accelerated; the English girl was attacked by Amanda Marie Knox, by Raffaele Sollecito, who was backing up his girlfriend, and by Rudi Hermann Guede, and constrained within her own room.”
The court said it was not necessary for all of the assailants to have the same motive, and that the murder was not attributable to a sex game gone awry, as it was out of Miss Kercher’s character to have consented to such activity.
In January Knox, 26, and Sollecito, 29, had their guilty verdicts reinstated at Italy’s highest court for the murder of Miss Kercher.
Knox was sentenced to 28 years and six months while Sollecito was jailed for 25 years.
Amanda Knox has been in the United States since 2011 when her earlier conviction was overturned.
The release of the court’s reasoning opens the verdict to an appeal back to the supreme Court of Cassation. If it confirms the convictions, a long extradition fight for Knox is expected.