Nov 19,2007 00:00
PERUGIA , Italy -- Italian police said they're seeking a fourth suspect in the death of a British university student after a bloody fingerprint was found.
The fingerprint, which was allegedly found in the apartment where British student Meredith Kercher was killed, belongs to an Ivory Coast native with prior convictions for drug dealing and petty theft, Sky News reported Monday.
Police have said they believe Kercher, a Leeds University exchange student, was sexually assaulted and killed Nov. 4 after she refused to participate in an extreme sex game.
Lawyers for the three previously arrested suspects -- Kercher's U.S.-native roommate, Amanda Knox; Knox's Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito; and Diya "Patrick" Lumumba, a Congolese bar owner -- said they hope evidence pointing to the new suspect will lead to their clients being exonerated.
"This is the first suspect, not the fourth," Tiziano Tedeschi, Sollecito's lawyer, told Sky News. "They (prosecutors) didn't want to find the truth; they wanted to close the case."
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