Page last updated at 18:26 GMT, Friday, 14 December 2007

Hundreds attend Meredith funeral

Cortege carries the coffin of Meredith Kercher to Croydon church

Hundreds of mourners have gathered for the funeral of the murdered student Meredith Kercher.

Miss Kercher, 21, from Coulsdon, south London, was found dead in Perugia, Italy, last month.

Her family were joined by many well-wishers at Croydon Parish Church including friends from Leeds University, where she studied.

Also on Friday, a court in Perugia ordered Rudy Hermann Guede, 20, one of four suspects, to remain in prison.

Miss Kercher's American flatmate Amanda Knox, 20, and Italian Raffaele Sollecito, 23, are also in custody in Italy.

Congolese bar owner Diya "Patrick" Lumumba, 38, has been released from prison but remains a suspect in the case. All four deny any involvement in Miss Kercher's death.

Miss Kercher, an exchange student, was found dead at the flat where she was living in Italy. Her throat had been cut.

Italian police said there may have been a sexual motive behind her death.

Floral tributes

Her funeral service was led by the vicar of Croydon, the Rev Colin Boswell.

He said: "It is important at a funeral like this that we try to remember things that are happy and good."

Her parents, Arline and John, her sister Stephanie and brothers John and Lyle were the last to arrive.

Meredith Kercher
Meredith Kercher was a student in Perugia, Italy

Among the floral tributes at the church was a small bouquet with a card marked "The City of Perugia".

Miss Kercher's sister Stephanie read a poem she had composed for the service.

The funeral was followed by a private burial at Mitcham Road Cemetery, near Croydon.

On Friday it was ruled that Guede, who has dual Ivory Coast and Italian nationality, was not eligible for release.

Walter Biscotti, one of Guede's legal team, said: "We will wait for the judge to let us know the reasoning behind the decision and we will decide how to proceed from there."

video and audio news
Friends and family attend the funeral of Meredith Kercher

Meredith suspect taken to Italy
06 Dec 07 |  Europe
Test results on murdered Briton
05 Nov 07 |  London

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