In today's hearing Judge Claudia Matteini admitted eight officers from the Perugia police department as civil plaintiffs, and adjourned the hearing.
The police officers are being represented by Francesco Maresca, the same lawyer who represented Kercher's family as civil plaintiffs in Knox's murder trial. Maresca said today that the officers sought him out because of his grasp of the case. The police officers have denied being abusive. In their testimony at the murder trial they said they had treated Knox fairly, giving her breaks and offering her coffee.
Lawyers for Knox wanted the judge removed from the slander case, maintaining that she was not suitable. She is the same judge who confirmed Knox's arrest for murder in November 2007 and twice denied Knox's requests for house arrest.
Matteini refused to step aside last June and two appeals to have her removed were rejected.
Ghirga told reporters in Perugia today that the slander case was important.
"The night of Nov. 6, 2007 (when Knox was interrogated by police) is at the heart of the case, because it precedes the actual investigation into Meredith's murder," Ghirga said.
The first hearing for Knox's appeal of her murder conviction is scheduled for Nov. 24. Her case will be heard by a new set of jurors and judges, who will review all the evidence presented in the first trial. Knox's lawyers will request an independent review of the forensic evidence that was hotly contested in her first trial.
And on Oct. 19 her parents also face a possible indictment.
Curt Knox and Edda Mellas are charged with libel, a lesser crime than slander, for repeating Knox's accusations of her alleged mistreatment to an English newspaper.
ABC News' Nick Watt contributed to this report