Guede was freed due to medical reasons, says Italian minister

Guede describes being told to take his clothes off and then put them back on in 1998

Rudy Guede, convicted over the murder of Meredith Kercher, has been released from prison after serving 10 years of a 16-year sentence.

The release was granted by a judge on Wednesday at the request of the Italian justice ministry on medical grounds, the Ministry of Justice said in a statement.

The release was confirmed by the British high commission, which said British consular staff were now at the main prison, Rapallo, in Emilia Romagna, where Guede was being held.

Authorities will now have to decide if Guede, 36, should be prevented from leaving Italy or if he should be subject to a travel ban.

“The British government has made representations to Italian authorities over Rudy Guede’s early release, which was an error in order to spare him additional suffering,” the UK high commission said in a statement.

“The Italian government has given assurances to the British government that arrangements would be made to ensure he can travel back to the UK as soon as possible.”

Guede, who cannot return to Italy until 2024, may now fight to overturn his sentence.

Domenico Quirico, a lawyer for Guede, said the sentence was “inconsistent” and he had lodged an appeal.

He also suggested the DNA obtained from a suspect in the case, Mattias Karlsson, was not enough to tie Guede to the murder, as its size compared with Guede’s and that Karlsson’s defence team had claimed.

Fearing Guede would commit another crime, prosecutors applied to the judge on Wednesday to release Guede on medical grounds, a process that involved medical reports, according to Clini-Scripps network TV3 and Corriere della Sera.

The highly motivated move from prosecutors comes days after Kercher’s family asked for Guede to be tried in an English court.

Meredith Kercher was found dead in November 2007 in the flat she shared with Guede in Perugia, central Italy. She had been raped and stabbed multiple times.

Kercher’s British flatmate and co-accused, Amanda Knox, and her Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, were acquitted by Italy’s supreme court in 2011 of the murder after spending four years in jail.

Guede was arrested in Germany just over a week after the killing.

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