On Wednesday, after more than 14 months, defense attorneys will conclude their arguments, and the two defendants, former classmates from California, can expect to learn their plight later in the week.
Finnegan Lee Elder, now 21, and Gabriel Natale-Hjorth, now 20, insisted they were acting in self-defense. They say they thought they were being attacked by a pair of thugs or Mafiosi when Vice Rifleman Mario Cerciello Rega and his colleague Andrea Varriale approached them in civilian clothes in the early hours of July 26, 2019.
The officers were dispatched to follow up on a report of a small-scale extortion attempt allegedly engineered by the Americans in retaliation for botched drug trafficking when the young men were in Trastevere, a district of the Rome nightlife, earlier at night. .
Much of the case rests on the testimony of Varriale, who insisted that the police identified themselves as police officers, against that of the young men, who, according to their own accounts, had spent the evening drinking beers and gunshots and unsuccessful attempts to buy cocaine. . Neither officer brought their duty pistols to the meeting.
Prosecutors alleged Elder repeatedly hammered a 7-inch (18-centimeter) military-style attack knife into Cerciello Rega, who had bled profusely and died shortly after in hospital.
The elder told the court that the heavy Cerciello Rega was fighting on him and that he feared the officer would try to strangle him, so he took out the knife and stabbed him. When the officer didn’t immediately let him go, he stabbed him again.
Under Italian law, alleged accomplices can also be charged with manslaughter even though prosecutors admit that they played no significant role in the actual murder. The prosecutor, in his closing arguments, asked the court to convict the two defendants and sentence them to life imprisonment, Italy’s most severe criminal sentence.
Judge Marina Finiti said the verdicts would likely be delivered on Wednesday or Thursday.
Shortly after the trial began on February 26, 2020, Italy, the first nation in the West affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, entered a severe lockdown. Several hearings took place without the public or even the journalists. At times, Elder and Natale-Hjorth followed the proceedings via a video link from the prison.
The defendants told the court that after a few visits they decided to visit Trastevere, a district of Rome popular among young people.
At one point in the evening, the defendants testified, they sought to buy cocaine. After being put in contact through an intermediary with a dealer, they paid 80 euros ($ 96) but instead of cocaine they were given an aspirin-like tablet. Before the Italian-speaking Natale-Hjorth could confront the dealer, a separate Carabinieri patrol intervened and those present dispersed.
Cerciello Rega, dressed in a t-shirt and long shorts, and Varriale, also casually dressed on the hot night in a polo shirt and jeans, were tasked with responding in plain clothes to what the prosecutors claimed to be an extortion plan devised by Natale-Hjorth.
When the cocaine deal was botched, the Americans snatched the middleman’s backpack in retaliation. Inside was the man’s cell phone, and Natale-Hjorth testified that he spoke with the man over the phone, making an appointment to exchange the bag and phone in exchange for the money that they had lost in the drug trade.
The defendants insisted that they expected the intermediary to show up in front of their hotel. Instead, two men, the officers in plain clothes, appeared without the middleman, they said. It was the intermediary who phoned the police to report that his bag had been stolen.
The two defendants are also charged with attempted extortion.
While Cerciello Rega wrestled with Elder, Natale-Hjorth struggled with Varriale, who had a back injury. After the stabbing, the Americans ran to their hotel room, where, according to Natale-Hjorth, Elder cleaned the knife and asked him to hide it. Natale-Hjorth testified that she hid the knife behind a ceiling panel in their bedroom, where it was discovered hours later by police.
The Americans are also charged with assault for injuring Varriales, carrying an attack-type knife outside their home without cause and resisting an official.
During the pre-trial investigation, Elder told his lawyers to watch video footage of a bank near the stabbing, but no video surveillance cameras were found to be working that night. .
Italian newspapers published a photo of Natale-Hjorth blindfolded and hands handcuffed behind his back during questioning at a rifle station in Rome, in violation of Italian law protecting the dignity of suspects. Among those in the interrogation room was Varriale, who said he used his phone to film the incident but did not transmit the video. The blindfold incident was investigated separately.
What Are The Main Benefits Of Comparing Car Insurance Quotes Online
LOS ANGELES, CA / ACCESSWIRE / June 24, 2020, / Compare-autoinsurance.Org has launched a new blog post that presents the main benefits of comparing multiple car insurance quotes. For more info and free online quotes, please visit https://compare-autoinsurance.Org/the-advantages-of-comparing-prices-with-car-insurance-quotes-online/ The modern society has numerous technological advantages. One important advantage is the speed at which information is sent and received. With the help of the internet, the shopping habits of many persons have drastically changed. The car insurance industry hasn't remained untouched by these changes. On the internet, drivers can compare insurance prices and find out which sellers have the best offers. View photos The advantages of comparing online car insurance quotes are the following: Online quotes can be obtained from anywhere and at any time. Unlike physical insurance agencies, websites don't have a specific schedule and they are available at any time. Drivers that have busy working schedules, can compare quotes from anywhere and at any time, even at midnight. Multiple choices. Almost all insurance providers, no matter if they are well-known brands or just local insurers, have an online presence. Online quotes will allow policyholders the chance to discover multiple insurance companies and check their prices. Drivers are no longer required to get quotes from just a few known insurance companies. Also, local and regional insurers can provide lower insurance rates for the same services. Accurate insurance estimates. Online quotes can only be accurate if the customers provide accurate and real info about their car models and driving history. Lying about past driving incidents can make the price estimates to be lower, but when dealing with an insurance company lying to them is useless. Usually, insurance companies will do research about a potential customer before granting him coverage. Online quotes can be sorted easily. Although drivers are recommended to not choose a policy just based on its price, drivers can easily sort quotes by insurance price. Using brokerage websites will allow drivers to get quotes from multiple insurers, thus making the comparison faster and easier. For additional info, money-saving tips, and free car insurance quotes, visit https://compare-autoinsurance.Org/ Compare-autoinsurance.Org is an online provider of life, home, health, and auto insurance quotes. This website is unique because it does not simply stick to one kind of insurance provider, but brings the clients the best deals from many different online insurance carriers. In this way, clients have access to offers from multiple carriers all in one place: this website. On this site, customers have access to quotes for insurance plans from various agencies, such as local or nationwide agencies, brand names insurance companies, etc. "Online quotes can easily help drivers obtain better car insurance deals. All they have to do is to complete an online form with accurate and real info, then compare prices", said Russell Rabichev, Marketing Director of Internet Marketing Company. CONTACT: Company Name: Internet Marketing CompanyPerson for contact Name: Gurgu CPhone Number: (818) 359-3898Email: [email protected]: https://compare-autoinsurance.Org/ SOURCE: Compare-autoinsurance.Org View source version on accesswire.Com:https://www.Accesswire.Com/595055/What-Are-The-Main-Benefits-Of-Comparing-Car-Insurance-Quotes-Online View photos
to request, modification Contact us at Here or [email protected]