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SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

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After looking at this list of contradictions about the 'Smithman' sighting

18% 18% 
[ 9 ]
67% 67% 
[ 34 ]
15% 15% 
[ 8 ]
 
Total Votes : 51

Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Joss on 18.07.15 18:42

I think what logical question that needs to be asked about the Smith's sighting is Why would they deliberately contact the police with such a story if it wasn't true? What would they possibly hope to gain by it? To insert themselves into a high profile criminal case of a missing child for their bit of fame, or for some other reason?  I am still really not certain what to think about the Smith's sighting and how it all ties in to the case? I just can't see why parents would place their child into the stressful situation of being interviewed by the police as to what she saw if it was all untrue, and that would mean they had to coach their daughter to lie to the police and get their stories straight, i just can't imagine they would do that as loving parents, and it keeps me on the fence about it all, yet on the other hand something is also a bit off with the story.
Eyewitness testimony can in a lot of cases be very wrong, and convict innocent people in crimes.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Joss on 18.07.15 18:49

Also if M. Smith states this:
(Quote from PJ files)
States that it is not possible for him to recognise the individual in person or by photograph.
How on earth would he be able to participate in drawing up an e-fit of the person he saw on the night carrying a child? Was he making stuff up from his imagination?

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by notlongnow on 18.07.15 18:51

@Joss wrote:I think what logical question that needs to be asked about the Smith's sighting is Why would they deliberately contact the police with such a story if it wasn't true? What would they possibly hope to gain by it? To insert themselves into a high profile criminal case of a missing child for their bit of fame, or for some other reason?  I am still really not certain what to think about the Smith's sighting and how it all ties in to the case? I just can't see why parents would place their child into the stressful situation of being interviewed by the police as to what she saw if it was all untrue, and that would mean they had to coach their daughter to lie to the police and get their stories straight, i just can't imagine they would do that as loving parents, and it keeps me on the fence about it all, yet on the other hand something is also a bit off with the story.
Eyewitness testimony can in a lot of cases be very wrong, and convict innocent people in crimes.

Likewise i have the same veiw as you.
The only person i can see it has helped is RM.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by cockerspaniel on 18.07.15 19:03

Just a thought but, if Mr Smith had seen someone carrying a child and it had been RM, wouldnt he have thought "thats odd, RM carrying a child about at night, ive seen him around before (most likely I assume without his daughter) , what on earth is he doing carrying a child around at this time of the evening? maybe to even say something in passing to the group re this?? also, with people you know by passing looks only, in such a small village you would expect a mutual head nod of acknowledgement  maybe  between 2 adult men of that age ??

hope this makes sense.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Joss on 18.07.15 19:21

@notlongnow wrote:
@Joss wrote:I think what logical question that needs to be asked about the Smith's sighting is Why would they deliberately contact the police with such a story if it wasn't true? What would they possibly hope to gain by it? To insert themselves into a high profile criminal case of a missing child for their bit of fame, or for some other reason?  I am still really not certain what to think about the Smith's sighting and how it all ties in to the case? I just can't see why parents would place their child into the stressful situation of being interviewed by the police as to what she saw if it was all untrue, and that would mean they had to coach their daughter to lie to the police and get their stories straight, i just can't imagine they would do that as loving parents, and it keeps me on the fence about it all, yet on the other hand something is also a bit off with the story.
Eyewitness testimony can in a lot of cases be very wrong, and convict innocent people in crimes.

Likewise i have the same veiw as you.
The only person i can see it has helped is RM.
And the lovely Kate McCann had this to say about RM with no proof whatsoever:

[color:c14e=000000]In her notes dated July 18, almost two months after Maddie's disappearance and at a time when there are starting to appear indicia against the McCanns, Kate sounds disheartened and reinforces the accusations against Murat: "I had lots of hope that there would be progress in Murat's situation. I'm sure that he is involved and I feel like killing him, but I can't".
[color:c14e=000000]http://www.mccannfiles.com/id166.html

[color:c14e=000000]K. McCann sure liked to wish harm [color:c14e=000000]on
people, what a despicable person she is.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 18.07.15 20:46

@Nuala wrote:@ Tony Bennett

I will be along later to reply to this and the rest of your post

Thank you, much appreciated
@ Nuala and others visiting this thread

Before answering your previous questions, your new ones, and also points and queries by others on the thread, can I please ask you (or anyone else) if you consent to these 8 sets of propositions about the Smiths' claimed sightings - thanks - it will help to know if these are accepted before we move on, or, if not, where you disagree:

Propositions re the Smiths

1. On 26 May 2007, he said the age of the nan he had seen was ’35 to 40’

2. The Smiths’ descriptions of Smithman resemble those of Tanner and Lourenco on Wojcek Krokowksi to a remarkable degree, all referring to ‘warm, cloth clothes and that repetitive phrase: ‘Didn’t look like a tourist’  

3. On 20 September 2007, he told an Irish Police Officer that the man was ‘about 40’

4. Ever since December of January, he has been in the hands of the McCann Team and working for them

5. In the recording of an Irishman placed on the McCanns’ website, the description of the man’s age changes again: not ’35 to 40’, not ‘about 40’ but the very precise ‘perhaps 34 or 35’

6. On the subject of what clothes the man was wearing, Martin Smith changed his story twice:

A - Statement to PJ, 26 May 2007: “He did not notice the body clothing and cannot describe the colour or fashion of the same”
B - THEN: Statement to Irish police officer, 30 January 2008: “He was wearing a dark jacket or blazer”
C - THEN: Audio recording put on McCanns’ website, May 2009: “I can’t recall what he was wearing, apart from a pair of beige trousers”


7. It is not normal for witnesses to change their statements

8. When the description by an Irishman of a man aged ‘perhaps 34-35’ was agreed by the McCann Team, one of these four things occurred:

A. Martin Smith changed his mind and told the McCanns the man was more like ’34-35’ than ‘40’, or
B. The McCann Team suggested this and asked his permission to change it, or

C. The McCann Team did it anyway and then told him, or
D. The McCann Team did it anyway and never bothered to tell him

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Verdi on 18.07.15 21:04

@Joss wrote:I think what logical question that needs to be asked about the Smith's sighting is Why would they deliberately contact the police with such a story if it wasn't true? What would they possibly hope to gain by it? To insert themselves into a high profile criminal case of a missing child for their bit of fame, or for some other reason?  I am still really not certain what to think about the Smith's sighting and how it all ties in to the case? I just can't see why parents would place their child into the stressful situation of being interviewed by the police as to what she saw if it was all untrue, and that would mean they had to coach their daughter to lie to the police and get their stories straight, i just can't imagine they would do that as loving parents, and it keeps me on the fence about it all, yet on the other hand something is also a bit off with the story.
Eyewitness testimony can in a lot of cases be very wrong, and convict innocent people in crimes.
Funny you say that.  I've just seen a comment posted over the way by someone who shall remain nameless.  H-RH says she completely empathised with Mr Smith when she read his statement (?).  The family were caught up in this circus through no fault of their own.

IMO to suggest that the Smith family were caught up in the circus through no fault of their own is total nonsense.  They weren't caught up in any circus, it was their decision and their decision alone to contact the police, so effectively it was their own fault.  On the surface, nobody knew of this mystery man roaming the streets carrying a child on the night of 3rd May until the Smith family volunteered the information - so why did they do that some three weeks after the event?  They didn't have to but appeared to wait until a given time before doing so - what or who prompted them to make this decision?

Had they have reported the incident closer to the time then I might be 100% convinced but as they waited until a particular time and even then only three of he family volunteered to make a statement (one very evasive), it does indicate that there was a specific reason for their decision other than assisting the investigation.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Nuala on 18.07.15 21:12

@ Tony Bennett

can I please ask you (or anyone else) if you consent to these 8 sets of propositions about the Smiths' claimed sightings

I'd prefer not to do it that way if you don't mind because it's not a logical way of getting to what's correct and what isn't.

I would prefer if we could take some of the points in your OP and see which ones we can eliminate, that way we will see what we are left with. I hope that sounds reasonable, it's the logical way to do it because some points are easier to deal with than others so can be sorted fairly easily I hope.

So, for example, in your OP you said this:

2. Did the man lower his head?
Peter Smith to the PJ: “He did not try to hide his face nor did he lower his gaze”.
But Martin Smith statement “He put his head down”.


Martin Smith didn't say that. In his September 2007 statement he said this about GM carrying his child down the steps of the plane:

It was the way Gerard McCann turned his head down which was similar to what the individual did on 3rd May 2007 when we met him.

I think anyone looking at that footage can see that even with GM's head slightly down, his face is still perfectly clear, so I don't see that as a contradiction. Would you agree therefore that point 2 in your OP actually doesn't represent a contradiction and should therefore be removed?

Just one other thing whilst reading your OP I noticed you said this:

Mary Smith refused to give a formal witness statement.

That is incorrect. Mary Smith did make a statement. Her statement isn't in the PJ files released to the public. She declined to make a further statement.

I don't know if there is a time limit on being able to edit a post, but that should be removed because it's incorrect.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 18.07.15 21:16

@Verdi wrote:
Funny you say that.  I've just seen a comment posted over the way by someone who shall remain nameless.  H-RH says she completely empathised with Mr Smith when she read his statement (?).  The family were caught up in this circus through no fault of their own.

IMO to suggest that the Smith family were caught up in the circus through no fault of their own is total nonsense.  They weren't caught up in any circus, it was their decision and their decision alone to contact the police, so effectively it was their own fault.  On the surface, nobody knew of this mystery man roaming the streets carrying a child on the night of 3rd May until the Smith family volunteered the information - so why did they do that some three weeks after the event?  They didn't have to but appeared to wait until a given time before doing so - what or who prompted them to make this decision?

Had they have reported the incident closer to the time then I might be 100% convinced but as they waited until a particular time and even then only three of he family volunteered to make a statement (one very evasive), it does indicate that there was a specific reason for their decision other than assisting the investigation.
@ Verdi   I think the above is a useful new angle on 'Smithman'.

It leads, I think, to this question: "Would the Smiths have reported their sighting if someone they knew well [viz., Murat] had not been arrested the day before for the appalling crime of abducting a 3-year-old child from an apartment?"

Another question I have not yet seen satisfactorily answered by ANYONE is: "Why are the descriptions by Nuno Lourenco of Wojcek Krokowksi and by Jane Tanner of 'Tannerman' near-identical [see 'The Truth about a Lie'], and why are the Smiths' descriptions of 'Smithman' ALSO near-identical to those by Nuno Lourenco and Jane Tanner?"

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 18.07.15 21:19

@Nuala wrote:@ Tony Bennett

can I please ask you (or anyone else) if you consent to these 8 sets of propositions about the Smiths' claimed sightings

I'd prefer not to do it that way if you don't mind because it's not a logical way of getting to what's correct and what isn't.
It would be very helpful, then, if you could simply indicate which (if any) of the 8 propositions re Smithman you disagree with (and why). It will considerably help me in answering your questions.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Nuala on 18.07.15 21:37

@ Tony Bennett

It would be very helpful, then, if you could simply indicate which (if any) of the 8 propositions re Smithman you disagree with (and why). It will considerably help me in answering your questions.

I'd prefer to come back to the propositions later because the logical way to approach this is to discuss some of the points in your OP in turn. You've quoted your OP many times in this thread, so that's the logical way to do it. Which of your propositions I agree or disagree with makes no difference to that. In your OP you are stating certain things as facts, so we should be discussing whether they're facts or not.

So, for example, in your OP you said this:

2. Did the man lower his head?
Peter Smith to the PJ: “He did not try to hide his face nor did he lower his gaze”.
But Martin Smith statement “He put his head down”.


Martin Smith didn't say that. In his September 2007 statement he said this about GM carrying his child down the steps of the plane:

It was the way Gerard McCann turned his head down which was similar to what the individual did on 3rd May 2007 when we met him.

I think anyone looking at that footage can see that even with GM's head slightly down, his face is still perfectly clear, so I don't see that as a contradiction. Would you agree therefore that point 2 in your OP actually doesn't represent a contradiction and should therefore be removed?

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Verdi on 19.07.15 0:12

@Tony Bennett wrote:
@Verdi wrote:
Funny you say that.  I've just seen a comment posted over the way by someone who shall remain nameless.  H-RH says she completely empathised with Mr Smith when she read his statement (?).  The family were caught up in this circus through no fault of their own.

IMO to suggest that the Smith family were caught up in the circus through no fault of their own is total nonsense.  They weren't caught up in any circus, it was their decision and their decision alone to contact the police, so effectively it was their own fault.  On the surface, nobody knew of this mystery man roaming the streets carrying a child on the night of 3rd May until the Smith family volunteered the information - so why did they do that some three weeks after the event?  They didn't have to but appeared to wait until a given time before doing so - what or who prompted them to make this decision?

Had they have reported the incident closer to the time then I might be 100% convinced but as they waited until a particular time and even then only three of he family volunteered to make a statement (one very evasive), it does indicate that there was a specific reason for their decision other than assisting the investigation.
@ Verdi   I think the above is a useful new angle on 'Smithman'.

It leads, I think, to this question: "Would the Smiths have reported their sighting if someone they knew well [viz., Murat] had not been arrested the day before for the appalling crime of abducting a 3-year-old child from an apartment?"

Another question I have not yet seen satisfactorily answered by ANYONE is: "Why are the descriptions by Nuno Lourenco of Wojcek Krokowksi and by Jane Tanner of 'Tannerman' near-identical [see 'The Truth about a Lie'], and why are the Smiths' descriptions of 'Smithman' ALSO near-identical to those by Nuno Lourenco and Jane Tanner?"
No, I'm not convinced that the Smiths would have reported their sighting without a particular reason, I think the timing is too much of a coincidence to be explained away with suggestions such as they didn't want to be involved or it never occurred to them that the person they saw may have been Madeleine's alleged abductor.

The thing that particularly strikes me about Tanner's sighting and that of the Smiths is they both said the person they saw was fully dressed and didn't appear to be a tourist, yet the child carried was said to be uncovered wearing only pyjamas, again highly unlikely occurrence and too much of a coincidence to be believable.  Also it was thought (the Smiths in particular) the person was most likely a father carrying his child home - coming from where and going to where I ask?  Is it really such a common sight at the beginning of May for someone to be carrying a child around the streets as many people seem to think?

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Joss on 19.07.15 3:27

If the Smith's saw anything at all i wouldn't think they saw a father nonchalantly carrying around his deceased child on the streets of PDL. What kind of crazy person would do and risk such a thing?

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Joss on 19.07.15 3:31

@Verdi wrote:
@Joss wrote:I think what logical question that needs to be asked about the Smith's sighting is Why would they deliberately contact the police with such a story if it wasn't true? What would they possibly hope to gain by it? To insert themselves into a high profile criminal case of a missing child for their bit of fame, or for some other reason?  I am still really not certain what to think about the Smith's sighting and how it all ties in to the case? I just can't see why parents would place their child into the stressful situation of being interviewed by the police as to what she saw if it was all untrue, and that would mean they had to coach their daughter to lie to the police and get their stories straight, i just can't imagine they would do that as loving parents, and it keeps me on the fence about it all, yet on the other hand something is also a bit off with the story.
Eyewitness testimony can in a lot of cases be very wrong, and convict innocent people in crimes.
Funny you say that.  I've just seen a comment posted over the way by someone who shall remain nameless.  H-RH says she completely empathised with Mr Smith when she read his statement (?).  The family were caught up in this circus through no fault of their own.

IMO to suggest that the Smith family were caught up in the circus through no fault of their own is total nonsense.  They weren't caught up in any circus, it was their decision and their decision alone to contact the police, so effectively it was their own fault.  On the surface, nobody knew of this mystery man roaming the streets carrying a child on the night of 3rd May until the Smith family volunteered the information - so why did they do that some three weeks after the event?  They didn't have to but appeared to wait until a given time before doing so - what or who prompted them to make this decision?

Had they have reported the incident closer to the time then I might be 100% convinced but as they waited until a particular time and even then only three of he family volunteered to make a statement (one very evasive), it does indicate that there was a specific reason for their decision other than assisting the investigation.
Agree, the Smith's for whatever reason inserted themselves into the case.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Rob Royston on 19.07.15 11:06

@Tony Bennett wrote:
@Rob Royston wrote:
What do we believe, a man's statement to the police, on 26th May 2007, not 2008,  or newspaper reports printed after he had been "visited"?

REPLY: I suspect you would agree with me if I said: "A witness statement could be a tissue of lies from start to finish, while a newspaper report could be 100% accurate". Equally, it is possible that a witness is telling the God's honest truth, and a journalist or editor has got a story wrong.

I think in all cases, and in this case especially, it is important to bring analysis to everything that has been done, said or written, by anyone. I have set out a veritable mass of contradictions in the Smiths' statements, which deal a severe blow to their collective credibility.

By contrast, the newspaper reports dated 3 and 4 January 2008 purport to quote directly from Martin Smith, don't they? IIRC at least one of the papers spoke directly to him. I am satisfied from all that I have seen that Martin Smith having 'met Murat several times' over 'many years' is accurate.
           

In his statement to the PJ, Martin Smith says it was his son who had telephoned him and reminded them all about the encounter. Peter Smith had never been to Portugal before and Murat had been in England until two days before he went home, so it is quite unlikely that he knew Murat. He did know the son of the developer of the complex where his father had the apartment as he says he talked with him at Faro airport, so it could be possible that he knew of Murat from others mentioning him in conversation. This may be the reason why he called his father after Murat had been made an arquido.

REPLY:  I remain to be persuaded that Peter's 'Am I only dreaming?' alleged 'phone call to his father on 16 May 2007 is anything but yet another Smith family fabrication
When the Irish policeman Hogan forwarded Martin Smith's statement to the PJ, about how he felt that it was Gerry McCann that he had seen in the street on the evening of the 3rd May 2007, he added a covering note where he told of the fact that Martin Smith did not court the media and had in fact legally challenged some of what they had written previously about his family, forcing them to retract and apologise.
It would seem to me that Mr Smith had little time for newspaper reporters, yet you are telling us now that all that suddenly changed after his "visitations" and that the papers suddenly became his confidantes. Is it not more likely that the papers printed whatever they were told to print by others, it seems to me to be what they always do.
I've no doubt in my mind that the news of Murat having been brought in for questioning was the catalyst for the Smiths remembering what they had seen. That does not mean that they "fabricated" any lies to help Murat.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 19.07.15 16:25

@Rob Royston wrote:
@Tony Bennett wrote:
It would seem to me that Mr Smith had little time for newspaper reporters, yet you are telling us now that all that suddenly changed after his "visitations" and that the papers suddenly became his confidantes. Is it not more likely that the papers printed whatever they were told to print by others, it seems to me to be what they always do.

REPLY: The way the newspaper reports are written, there are many direct quotes from Martin Smith, from his wife, and from his son Peter Smith. I very much doubt that none of the Smiths ever spoke to a newspaper.

What I would accept (common practice in journalism) is that often the newspapers were supplied with written press or media releases, with some ready-made quotes within them. And of course by the beginning of 2008 the McCann Team had already gotten hold of the Smiths - and no doubt Clarence Mitchell was priming the relevant newspapers about what they should print. It is what he was paid handsomely for doing.     
 

I've no doubt in my mind that the news of Murat having been brought in for questioning was the catalyst for the Smiths...

REPLY: We seem to agree on this then: That without Murat having been made an arguido on 15 May, we might never have heard from the Smiths

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by woodpecker on 19.07.15 18:47

I voted yes ‘I tend to believe the smiths’ and this is why:

They have no motive to lie. There would have to be an incredibly strong motive to persuade you and your family, including your 12 year old daughter, to perjure yourselves.

Being an acquaintance of Murat/knowing him ‘to see’/even if a friend is not a motive to lie

I would not have reported the sighting at the time as I would have assumed that a kidnapper had a car waiting and was now well out of PDL and not walking through the streets carrying a child. The Smith family, as regular visitors to PDL, were likely to know that there was an evening creche connected to the Mark Warner complex so would not find someone carrying a child at that time out of the ordinary.

Murat in all the pictures I have seen wears glasses. While the lighting was not good, you would notice whether the man wore glasses as you would notice whether he was very tall, very small, fat, or skinny. Mr Smith would have known that the man he saw was not Murat from the glasses point alone.

The differences in the age suggested for Smithman range from 34-35, to 35-40 and to 40. This is not significant. If one age suggested was 20 and another 45 then yes that would be  a significant contradiction.

Newspapers get press releases – they would have been bombarded with them by Team McCann. Journalist, often amend releases to make their report different to the ones in competing papers.. This can involve changing quotes in the press release which can sometimes give a different nuance.  Yes, people can lie in police statements but the family had no reason to lie that can be established.

There were 4 adults in the Smith party and 5 children. The two Mr Smiths gave statements. Mrs Smith senior gave a statement but it is not in the police files and she ‘declined’ to make a further statement presumably because she had nothing further to add. Mrs Smith junior did not make a statement; she was pregnant and not feeling well that evening. She returned home the next day. I don’t know when her baby was due. Probably her husband did not want her getting involved at a stressful time and when she could not add anything to what the others said. Aoife aged 12 made a statement; the four other children did not. Their ages were 4,6, 10 and 13.  Somebody (Verdi ?) said only three people made statements as though that is suspicious. Is it usual to take statements from children when they are either too young or they did not see anything the adults didn’t?

I’m really puzzled by the fact that less than 40 members have voted on this topic when there are well over 4,000 registered members.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 19.07.15 20:18

REPLIES TO NUALA: PART ONE

My replies to Nuala in blue

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Nuala your post at 11.34, 18th

The Facts - from Martin Smith's Statement

From Martin Smith statement 26 May

He saw a man carrying a child past him, a not unusual sight in the tourist season. He assumed it was a father and daughter and ‘thought nothing more of it’. The child’s head lay on the man’s left shoulder; he did not appear to be comfortable holding her.

He didn’t see the man very well, so said ‘it would not be possible to recognise him again in person or by a photograph. He said that the man he saw was white, ‘normal complexion, 1.75m to 1.80m in height (5’9” to 5’ 11”), a bit thin, 35-40 years old, short hair. He had a normal complexion, a bit on the thin side. His hair was short and brown, in ‘a basic male cut’, didn’t wear glasses and had no beard or moustache. He wore cream or beige-coloured cloth trousers in a classic cut. He didn’t look like a tourist, but can’t explain why he thinks this.

He only saw him as they passed each other. He assumed it was a father and daughter and thought nothing more of it.

20 September Martin Smith to Liam Hogan, Irish Gardaí

…after seeing the McCanns on the news on 9th Sept when they returned to UK he has not slept and is worried sick. He states he was watching the 10pm news on BBC and saw the McCanns getting off the plane and coming down the steps. He states it was like watching an action replay of the night he saw the male carrying the child back in Portugal. He states the way Gerry was carrying his twin triggered something in his head. It was exactly the same way and look of the male seen the night Maddie went missing. He also watched ITV news and SKY News and inferred it looked like the same person both times carrying the children.

McCanns website, May 2009 onwards

He was carrying the girl over his arms with her head against his left shoulder.

Report in Daily Mail, 3 January : EXCLUSIVE: Tourist met rude man carrying child in blanket on night Madeleine vanished By SANDRA MURPHY, VANESSA ALLEN

AN IRISH holidaymaker has spoken publicly for the first time of his disturbing encounter with a man carrying a child wrapped in a blanket on the night Madeleine McCann disappeared.

Now investigators hired by Madeleine's parents hope Martin Smith and his family can provide a crucial breakthrough.

Speaking from his home in Drogheda, Co. Louth, Mr Smith recalled the sighting, which is strikingly similar to one by a friend of the McCanns, Jane Tanner. In hindsight, the retired Mr Smith said, the mans rude behaviour should have aroused his suspicions.

He explained: "The one thing we noted afterwards was that he gave us no greeting.

"My wife Mary remembered afterwards that she asked him, 'Oh, is she asleep?' But he never acknowledged her one way or another.

"He just put his head down and averted his eyes. This is very unusual in a tourist town at such a quiet time of the year."

@ Nuala  There is the evidence. Contrary to your assertion, Martin Smith DID say 'he just put his head down'

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

@ Doug D post

 Doug D asked:  I’m sure it’s been discussed before, but is Martin Smith initially suggesting a ‘Tannerman’ holding position, before changing it to the shoulder ‘carrying off plane’ position later on?

Nuala replied: No, all three Smith statements in May 2007 are quite clear that the child was being carried in an ‘off the plane’ position. Martin Smith said [Nuala then reproduced relevant extracts from each of the three Smith statements]

Doug D replied: If that is what he meant by:

‘He states that the individual carried the child in his arms, with her head laying on the individual's left shoulder, that being to the right of the deponent.’

(i.e. not Tannerman, arms out with head to left side)

why then add:

 ‘He adds that he did not hold the child in a comfortable position, suggesting [the carrying] not being habitual.’

 The ‘off the plane position’ is the natural and most comfortable position for both parent and child.

 So why add clarification to something that should not need clarifying?
 
@ Nuala   I am not sure if you have answered Doug D’s point yet?

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 19.07.15 20:44

REPLIES TO NUALA: PART TWO

My replies to Nuala in blue

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

@ Nuala your post at 12.23, 18th

Quote Tony Bennett:

what he does say is that the man 'put his head down'
Peter Smith to the PJ: “He did not try to hide his face nor did he lower his gaze”.
But Martin Smith statement “He put his head down”.


Nuala wrote: Actually Martin Smith didn't say that…

@ Nuala: Yes he did, he is directly quoted by the Daily Mail, 'from his home in Drogheda', as saying ‘He put his head down’. So I reject your challenge as incorrect

@ Nuala

You quote this: “It was the way Gerard McCann turned his head down which was similar to what the individual did on 3rd May 2007 when we met him”.

 You then say: “I think anyone looking at that footage [McCann coming down the steps of the aeroplane] can see that even with GM's head slightly down, his face is still perfectly clear, so I don't see that as a contradiction”

@ Nuala: I fear you have misunderstood. The contradiction I set out at Point 2 was surely clear:

Peter Smith to the PJ: “He did not try to hide his face nor did he lower his gaze”.
But Martin Smith statement “He put his head down”.


Head lowered (Martin), or not lowered (Peter). So I reject your second charge as inaccurate.

++++++

Then Nuala wrote:

I don't see this as a contradiction either:

Martin Smith said: “The man didn’t speak, nor did the child as she was ‘in a deep sleep’,” but how could he tell she was asleep, let alone in a deep sleep, if, as Aofie says, she couldn’t see the child’s face at all?”

You commented: “Both Martin Smith and Peter Smith were perfectly clear that the child was asleep so they obviously passed the man with the child's face in view, but A Smith passed on the opposite side of the man, so couldn't see the child's face”. 

@ Nuala  This is an INTERPRETATION you put on what happened which is NOT supported by actual evidence.

But, worse than that, you have cut out Peter Smith’s comment which was what the contradiction was all about.

The contradiction I referred to was very clear:

Peter Smith: “The girl was asleep; her eyelids were closed”
Aoife Smith: “I couldn’t see the child’s face at all?”

You misled forum members by missing out Peter Smith’s evidence (I hope it wasn’t deliberate).

Peter Smith could see the girl’s eyelids, Aoife Smith could see any of her face. The contradiction is quite clear and your criticism is again rejected as inaccurate. 

Nuala then quoted Tony Bennett: 

Contradiction 9. Contradictions by Martin Smith in what he said about the age of the man
Martin Smith statement to PJ, 26 May 2007: “Aged 35 to 40”
Martin Smith to Irish police officer, 30 January 2008: “Aged approximately 40”
Martin Smith statement audio recording put on McCanns’ website, May 2009: “Perhaps 34 or 35”


Nuala wrote: The third statement though, is very interesting and you refer to it as well in this bit:

But when the McCanns wanted to put a summary of his statement on their 'Find Madeleine' website (which they did in May 2009), Martin Smith was quite happy to alter that to '34-35'. It would be very interesting to find out exactly when, why and how Martin Smith decided to change his original statement.

That's a very good point. Can you tell me where you got this information from, that it was Martin Smith that changed the estimated age of the man for the Find Madeleine website?

Thanks

@ Nuala   In January 2008, Martin Smith says the man was ‘aged 40 years approximately’. By the time we get to his summary statement being uploaded onto the McCanns’ website, however, this has been changed to ‘perhaps 34 or 35’.

What we need to probe is why the age of the man was changed by as much  5 to 6 years.

In my list of 8 propositions. I invited you to agree that witnesses don’t often change their statements, once they’ve committed them to the police in writing. You declined to answer. But it’s a very obvious point: the more a witness changes his statement, the more his credibility is undermined. 

In my fourth proposition, I invited you to agree that: “Ever since December 2007 or January 2008, he has been in the hands of the McCann Team and working for them”. Again you declined to answer. I suggest that you can bring us no evidence to challenge that.

On that basis, I said this (Proposition 8):

QUOTE

When the description by an Irishman of a man aged ‘perhaps 34-35’ was agreed by the McCann Team, one of these four things occurred:

A. Martin Smith changed his mind and told the McCanns the man was more like ’34-35’ than ‘40’, or
B. The McCann Team suggested this and asked his permission to change it, or,

C. The McCann Team did it anyway and then told him or
D. The McCann Team did it anyway and never bothered to tell him


UNQUOTE

Now, unless you have any further alternatives to suggest, I would suggest that (B) is by far the most likely alternative.

If you were to say (A), then I would suggest Martin Smith would be making a fool of himself, by constantly changing from ’35-40, to 40, to 34-35. It would undermine his credibility. A barrister would ask him: ‘Just what made you change your mind from 40 to 34/5, Mr Smith’? I very much doubt if he could supply a coherent answer to hat question.

In fact, when we look at Martin Smith’s evidence, it’s about as firms as quicksand.

Take his three answers on what clothes the man was wearing above his waist:

1. Couldn’t see
2. Dark jacket or blazer
3. Couldn’t see.

Or take his answers on Murat:

1. Twice in bars in May and August last year

2. Once in a bar two years ago

3. ‘Several times’ over ‘many years’.

Or take his answers on whether the man’s head was down:

1. Original statement – no mention
2. Later ‘his head was down’.

and so on...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

@ Nuala your post at 6.05, 18th 

QUOTE Tony Bennett:

BENNETT:  Kennedy contacts the Smiths. Henri Exton, and possibly Irishman Kevin Halligen, talk to the Smiths and produce two e-fits of different-looking men.

Nuala replied: The e-fits are clearly of the same man. You then referred to this thread:

http://jillhavern.forumotion.net/t11383-operation-grange-broke-acpo-police-guidelines-by-not-issuing-just-one-composite-efit-of-smithman-plus-new-article-major-problems-with-those-efits

And Nuala added:  “Jon Tait from Twitter has shown that when you make a composite of the two images it’s exactly the same man. Indeed so alike are they it's virtually impossible to tell that it's a composite of two images”.

@ Nuala     Merging two images does NOT produce ‘the same man’ as you suggest, and what Jon Tait has to say on the matter is irrelevant.

We are not going to agree on this. I have pointed out a list of the many differences between the two images:

Overall size of face

Overall shape of face

Amount of hair

Style of hair

Shape of chin

Depth of chin

Length of nose
and so on.

Moreover, computer tecchies have said that the images have clearly been done on two different computer programs – one image is sharp, the other grainy.

Apart from that, it is almost unprecedented for a police force to issue two different e-fits, because that just confuses people.

Nuala wrote: Also, I would add to this phase the sentence: “These two e-fits were not released to the public because they looked exactly like Gerry McCann”.

@ Nuala  Sheer speculation on your part, and I completely disagree. I am sure the e-fits were held up for other reasons. Nothing more to say on that.

Quote Tony Bennett:

In the Crimewatch broadcast, DCI Andy Redwood showed us two efits of different-looking people, implying that the Smiths drew them up.

Nuala wrote: They were drawn up by the Smiths, I believe an FOI request confirmed this?

@ Nuala    Yes, it was my FOI Act request. But despite the Met Police asserting that the two e-fits are allegedly of the same man, and were allegedly drawn up by the Smiths, I disbelieve them on both counts. I’ve given my reasons elsewhere.

Nuala added: Also, I would add this sentence:

 “Since the release of the e-fits of Op Grange's main suspect the Find Madeleine website has removed all references to the Smith sighting (apart from the short audio clip) and is actively promoting the Tannerman sighting, followed by Pimpleman and the VB lookalike. This, of course, is because the e-fits released by Op Grange look exactly like Gerry McCann”.

@ Nuala   I disagree, but concede that one of the images bears a passing resemblance to him. However, it also bears a passing resemblance to thousands of other white males

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Tony Bennett on 19.07.15 20:49

PEPLIES TO NUALA: PART THREE - AND REPLIES TO OTHERS

My replies in blue:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

@ Nuala your post at 9.37, 18th  

Nuala repeated herself, but added: “Which of your propositions I agree or disagree with makes no difference to that. In your OP you are stating certain things as facts, so we should be discussing whether they're facts or not”.


Nuala also wrote:

Just one other thing whilst reading your OP I noticed you said this:

Mary Smith refused to give a formal witness statement.

Nuala said:
  That is incorrect. Mary Smith did make a statement. Her statement isn't in the PJ files released to the public. She declined to make a further statement. I don't know if there is a time limit on being able to edit a post, but that should be removed because it's incorrect.

@ Nuala    I chose my words carefully. I said that she never made ‘a formal witness statement’ and I stand completely by those words.

We know that she refused to go to Portugal to make a witness statement to the Portuguese Police. You are right that it states that she declined to make ‘a further statement’. We actually have no knowledge of what earlier statement she did make, if any. We don’t know if it was verbal, or written in her own handwriting, or signed at her home or a police station - we know nothing about it. The plain fact is that despite this being about a missing child and a possible abductor, she refused the Portuguese Police’s request to make a formal witness statement.
 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Responses to other comments on the thread:

Joss at 6.42 wrote:

I think what logical question that needs to be asked about the Smiths' sighting is: Why would they deliberately contact the police with such a story if it wasn't true? What would they possibly hope to gain by it?

REPLY: I have said a number of times that many many people have lied to help out relatives or friends or people that they know. Given the proven connection between Robert Murat and Martin Smith, I think that is the most likely line of enquiry as to motive.

But people lie to the police, all the time, for all sorts of other reasons: Fear or intimidation, blackmail, bribery, money. Let is never forget on this forum that according to a 2009 article by Mark Hollingsworth, Brian Kennedy intimidated certain witnesses (plural) into silence.  

Joss at 6.49 wrote:

Also if M. Smith states this:
(Quote from PJ files)
States that it is not possible for him to recognise the individual in person or by photograph.
How on earth would he be able to participate in drawing up an e-fit of the person he saw on the night carrying a child? Was he making stuff up from his imagination?

REPLY: That is one of the strongest arguments that ‘Smithman' is a fabrication.

Notongnow wrote:

The only person I can see it has helped is RM.

REPLY: I agree

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Nuala on 19.07.15 20:56

@ Rob Royston

When the Irish policeman Hogan forwarded Martin Smith's statement to the PJ, about how he felt that it was Gerry McCann that he
had seen in the street on the evening of the 3rd May 2007, he added a covering note where he told of the fact that Martin Smith did
not court the media and had in fact legally challenged some of what they had written previously about his family, forcing them to
retract and apologise.
It would seem to me that Mr Smith had little time for newspaper reporters, yet you are telling us now that all that suddenly changed

after his "visitations" and that the papers suddenly became his confidantes. Is it not more likely that the papers printed whatever they
were told to print by others, it seems to me to be what they always do.

I agree with you. It's very common for newspapers to do that. They will even make up quotes if they can't get one.

This is what Sergeant Liam Hogan had to say:

He has been contacted by numerous tabloid press looking for stories. He has been contacted by Mr Brian Kennedy who is supporting the McCann family to take part in a photo fit exercise. He has given no stories or helped in any photo fits. He sent a solicitor's letter to six papers in relation material that was printed that was misquoted. The Evening Herald paid his solicitor's fees and all papers printed an apology. His photograph appeared in another tabloid paper and this matter is being pursued at the moment.

I do not believe that Martin Smith is courting the press and my view his is a genuine person. He is known locally and is a very decent
person.

It's perfectly clear from that, that Martin Smith had been contacted by the press and had given no stories.

Stories in the press appeared anyway misquoting Martin Smith (they would have to be misquotes as he hadn't spoken to them, so the
press made them up) and MS was having to pursue that via his solicitor.

Obviously the press were behaving disgracefully as usual.

There is no question that Martin Smith is a decent person who was trying to do the right thing and was caught up in what turned out
to be extraordinary events. Any suggestion that he behaved improperly is without any foundation whatsoever.

I've no doubt in my mind that the news of Murat having been brought in for questioning was the catalyst for the Smiths remembering
what they had seen. That does not mean that they "fabricated" any lies to help Murat.

I agree, of course they didn't. They didn't even know Robert Murat. Martin Smith knew him by sight only.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Nuala on 19.07.15 22:19

@ Tony Bennett

Addressing part 1 of your replies:

"He just put his head down and averted his eyes. This is very unusual in a tourist town at such a quiet time of the year."
There is the evidence. Contrary to your assertion, Martin Smith DID say 'he just put his head down'

No, Martin Smith didn't say "he just put his head down" the Daily Mail said it. I don't accept what the press says, and the Daily Mail at
that, as being a direct quote from the Smiths.

Also, to quote your contradiction number 2 again, which is what we're discussing here:

2. Did the man lower his head?
Peter Smith to the PJ: “He did not try to hide his face nor did he lower his gaze”.
But Martin Smith statement “He put his head down”.


MS and PS see the man in two different locations separated by about 20 metres, so it cannot be expected that the man is seen the same way by both. They see him in different places, from different angles and at different times. Please read here:

http://textusa.blogspot.pt/2014/04/speed.html  

There is no contradiction so number 2 should be removed from your list.

I am not sure if you have answered Doug D’s point yet?

I answered it yesterday at 12:39 pm

@ Doug D

The ‘off the plane position’ is the natural and most comfortable position for both parent and child.
So why add clarification to something that should not need clarifying?


He wasn't clarifying the position of the child, but the apparent comfort of transporting "not being habitual" i.e. he wasn't used to it.

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Verdi on 19.07.15 22:25

@ woodpecker

"Somebody (Verdi ?) said only three people made statements as though that is suspicious. Is it usual to take statements from children when they are either too young or they did not see anything the adults didn’t?"

Firstly, as you know Martin Smith's wife did not make a formal written statement.  Women tend to be more emotional than men so I'm quite surprised that Martin Smith's wife was so reticent about giving a formal statement, especially considering the nature of the investigation - a missing child!  Also there was another child in the group, one year older than Aoife Martin but she also declined to give a statement for whatever reason.  Could be something could be nothing!

So moving on to a more important issue, try looking at the situation from this angle.  The three main players - Martin Smith, his daughter Aoife Smith and his elder son Peter Smith, all travelled to Portugal to give a formal statement.  This is a bit confusing in itself as a report in the Daily Mail on 3rd January 2008, quotes Martin Smith thus:

"We were home two weeks when my son rang up and asked was he dreaming or did we meet a man carrying a child the night Madeleine was taken. We all remembered that we had the same recollection. I felt we should report it to the police."

"I rang the Portuguese police and they took a statement from me on the phone.Then they asked me to make a statement to gardai, which I did in Drogheda two weeks after the disappearance.
 
"Two days later, Leicestershire police got on to us and said they wanted to speak to all nine of us. But we felt there was no point dragging grand children and the whole lot out to Portugal so just my eldest son, Peter, and youngest daughter, Aoife, and I flew to Luz to make a statement."

(thanks to mccannfiles.com)

Aside from one or two peculiarities in this report which can be reserved for another occasion, the three main players traveled to Portugal to give formal statements.  Martin Smith and his daughters statements are almost identical as regards the strangers description but the son Peter is far more vague.  There could of course be a good reason for his lack of it attention but I question how come he is the very person that alerted the rest of his family two weeks after their return to Ireland.  Martin Smith had quite a lot to say about when he first heard of a kidnapped child on 4th May, about frightened family children, about their general reaction to the child's disappearance and yet they do nothing until Peter Martin phones them two weeks later - the one person that paid the least attention to the stranger on the night of 3rd May?

____________________
The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made" - Groucho Marx

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Re: SMITHMAN 5: The evidence of the Smith family from Drogheda, Ireland: the TWELVE sets of contradictions

Post by Doug D on 19.07.15 22:43





In this sort of situation, whichever side you passed you could not see if the child's eyes were open or closed.

........................................

Nuala:

'He wasn't clarifying the position of the child, but the apparent comfort of transporting "not being habitual" i.e. he wasn't used to it.'


Martin Smith, as a father and grandfather several times over 'wasn't used to' the most frequently adopted position to carry a young child, as in the above photos.


Sorry, pull the other one. 


That is why I have my doubts about what he actually meant about the carrying position, and whether he initially was describing a 'Tannerman' type carry, with the head on the left, from which position you would be able to see the child's face, which he later had to change to accommodate the 'plane' sighting.


We could argue the point all day, but without publication of a proper cross-examination, there is nothing there to actually confirm either way.

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