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Amanda Knox's Partner in Crime Speaks Out

Raffaele Sollecito reacts in court in Perugia, Italy, Thursday, Dec.3, 2009. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
AP Photo/Luca Bruno
Interviewed by his own lawyer on behalf of a Rome newspaper, Raffaele Sollecito says he still can't understand how the trial ended with guilty verdicts, reports CBS News correspondent Richard Roth.

Sollecito was convicted of holding down British student Meredith Kercher, while Knox slashed her throat with a kitchen knife.

But he insisted Knox is incapable of killing anyone, calling her a "sweet girl" whose behavior in the days after her roommate's murder was misinterpreted as unfeeling or sinister.

From her prison cell in Perugia, Knox. Too. insists she's innocent, according to a member of the Italian parliament who met with her this week.
Walter Verini says Knox told him she does have faith the Italian judicial system will exonerate her when her conviction's appealed, Roth reports.

"She looked tranquil and confident that her arguments will be heard, sooner or later," Verini said. "Her eyes are the eyes of a young person who just got sentenced to 26 years, but also of someone who has not given up."

He said Knox was writing when he arrived and welcomed him "with a kind smile."

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Books were on Knox's bed in the cell she is sharing with a 53-year-old woman from New Orleans who is serving a four-year sentence for drug dealing, the lawmaker said.

Knox has asked for permission to work in the prison laundry, and she seems to have a good relationship with the other inmates, he said.

"She is able to socialize and I think she's treated well," Verini said, adding that he was not allowed to discuss details of the legal case with Knox.

Sharing that hope, Knox's mother, Edda Mellas, is meeting with U.S. diplomats in Rome Friday. Knox receives consular support as an American citizen, but the State Department has made no complaint or comment to Italy over her conviction.

The yearlong trial attracted intense media interest. After the verdict was announced following 13 hours of deliberations, Knox burst into tears.

It will be months before an appeals trial can begin.

Knox and Sollecito have been jailed since their arrest a few days after the Nov. 1, 2007 slaying of Kercher.

Knox has alternately been depicted as a cold-blooded "she-devil" or an innocent foreigner who fell victim of a much-criticized Italian justice system. In the United States, the coverage has been largely favorable to the American and critical of the Italian handling of the case.

The U.S. Embassy in Rome and Knox's lawyers said that a meeting with consular officials is scheduled for Friday. Embassy officials and the lawyers declined to say why the meeting was sought.

Sen. Maria Cantwell, a Democrat from Knox's home state of Washington, has questioned the fairness of the trial, while U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she had not looked into the case but would meet with anybody who had concerns.

Italy's Foreign Minister Franco Frattini has said Knox's conviction has not damaged U.S.-Italian relations.