Italy to pay damages to Amanda Knox

A European court has ruled Amanda Knox should have had assistance when she was accused of murder.
A European court has ruled Amanda Knox should have had assistance when she was accused of murder.

American Amanda Knox has been awarded financial damages for not being provided legal assistance and a translator during a long night of questioning over the murder of her roommate in Italy in November 2007.

The European Human Rights Court in Strasbourg, France ordered that Italy must pay Knox 18,400 euros ($A28,800) in damages, costs and expenses.

"Ms. Knox had been particularly vulnerable, being a foreign young woman, 20 at the time, not having been in Italy for very long and not being fluent in Italian," the court noted.

Knox's defence lawyer, Carlo Dalla Vedova, said the decision "is not a big surprise for me because the supreme court already said there were many mistakes (in the case).

"It is impossible to compensate Amanda for four years in prison for a mistake. There will be no amount. We are not looking for compensation of damages. We are doing this on principle," he said.

After more than seven years of legal battles, Knox, now 31, was acquitted of Meredith Kercher's murder by Italy's highest court in March 2015.

The sensational murder of 21-year-old Kercher attracted global attention, especially after suspicion fell on Knox, and Knox's then-Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito.

Kercher was found nude under a blanket, with her throat slit.

Knox and her former boyfriend were initially convicted in Kercher's slaying and handed hefty sentences, but both were eventually acquitted.

An Ivorian immigrant is currently serving a 16-year sentence for the murder.

Australian Associated Press