The parents of Amanda Knox, an American student at the center of a closely followed murder case, have been indicted on a charge of slander.
A judge Tuesday ruled that her parents, Curt Knox and Edda Mellas, must stand trial over allegations that they slandered Italian police officers by claiming that their daughter was physically and verbally abused during questioning. The allegations of police abuse appeared in an interview with the Sunday Times.
"The charge stems from an interview they gave to Britain's Sunday Times two years ago in which they said their daughter had — after arrest — been refused an interpreter, deprived of food and water, and physically and verbally abused by the police," BBC reports.
"The couple are also accused of falsely claiming that Knox was hit on the head by a policeman and threatened with violence if she asked for a lawyer."
Amanda Knox, 23, and her former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, were convicted in 2009 of sexually assaulting and murdering British student Meredith Kercher two years earlier. Kercher was Knox's roommate.
Knox is serving a 26-year sentence, and Sollecito a 25-year sentence. Both have always denied the charges, and Knox is appealing her conviction.
The trial in a Perugia court is set to begin July 4. Slander, a criminal charge in Italy, carries up to three years in prison.
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