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Post by Verdi 27.09.18 1:01

Madeleine McCann witness breaks her silence

By Martina Smit

2:46PM GMT 14 Dec 2007

Minutes before his daughter Madeleine disappeared, Gerry McCann told a fellow holidaymaker that he and his wife would have stayed in with their children if they had not been holidaying with friends.

The revelation has been made by Bridget O'Donnell, a former BBC Crimewatch producer who got to know the McCanns at the Mark Warner resort in Praia da Luz, Portugal. She has now told her story for the first time.

"I have always believed that Kate and Gerry McCann are innocent," Miss O'Donnell wrote in an article published by The Guardian.

On the night of May 3, while walking their baby son to sleep, her partner Jes Wilkins bumped into a "relaxed and friendly" Mr McCann who had just checked on his children. "They talked about daughters, fathers, families," Miss O'Donnell wrote.

"They discussed the babysitting dilemmas at the resort and Gerry said that he and Kate would have stayed in too, if they had not been on holiday with a group."

Every night, the McCanns and their friends - whom Miss O'Donnell dubbed "The Doctors" - booked a large table at the Tapas restaurant at the Mark Warner resort.

"One man was the joker," she recalled. "He had a loud Glaswegian accent. He was Gerry McCann."

The night before Madeleine went missing, Miss O'Donnell and her partner - also a television producer - were placed at a table next to "The Doctors". Mr McCann invited them to join the group.

"We discussed the children," Miss O'Donnell wrote. "He told us they were leaving theirs sleeping in the apartments. While they chatted on, I ruminated on the pros and cons of this."

Sit-in babysitters at the resort were expensive and booked long in advance, while a group baby sitting service at the kiddie club meant that the children had to be put to sleep twice - both there and then back at their parents' apartments.

"I admired (the McCanns), in a way, for not being paranoid parents, but I decided that out apartment was too far off even to contemplate (leaving their children)," Miss McDonnell wrote. "Our baby was too young and I would worry about them waking up."

Nevertheless, the producer said she was glad her family did not get the McCanns' apartment. "It was on a corner by the road and people could see in. They were exposed."

The next day, after her partner played tennis with Mr McCann, Miss O'Donnell observed the couple. "Kate was calm, still, quietly beautiful; Gerry was confident, proud, silly, strong."

But two days later, after the events of that night, "the physical transformation of these two human beings was sickening" as she saw the McCanns at the pool.

"Kate's back and shoulders, her hands, her mouth had reshaped themselves in to the angular manifestation of a silent scream... Gerry was upright, his lips now drawn into a thin, impenetrable line."

On the Friday, locals and holidaymakers had started circulating photocopied pictures of Madeleine. "We didn't see any police," Miss O'Donnell wrote.

A uniformed Portuguese policeman and a translator - whom she later found out was Robert Murat, named by the Policia Judiciara as an arguido or suspect in the case - later questioned Miss O'Donnell and her partner in their apartment.

"The translator had a squint and sweated slightly," she described Mr Murat. "He was breathless, perhaps a little excited. He reminded me of a boy in my class at school who was bullied."

They answered a few questions and gave their details, which the policeman took down on "the back of a bit of paper", Miss McDonnell wrote. "No notebook."

"Then he pointed to the photocopied picture of Madeleine on the table. 'Is this your daughter?' he asked. 'Er, no,' we said. 'That's the girl you are meant to be searching for.'

"My heart sank for the McCanns."

Even when the McCanns were named suspects along with Mr Murat, Miss O'Donnell still believed they were innocent.

"There were no drug-fuelled 'swingers' on our holiday; instead, there was a bunch of ordinary parents wearing Berghaus and worrying about sleep patterns. Secure in our banality, none of us imagined we were being watched.

"One group made a disastrous decision; Madeleine was vulnerable and was chosen. But in the face of such desperate audacity, it could have been any one of us.

"And when I stroke my daughter's hair, or feel her butterfly lips on my cheek, I do so in the knowledge of what night have been.

"So my heart goes out to them, Gerry and Kate, the couple who we remember from our Portuguese holiday. They had a beautiful daughter, Madeleine, who played and danced with ours at the kiddie club. That's who we remember."

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1572560/Madeleine-McCann-witness-breaks-her-silence.html

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Post by Verdi 28.09.18 22:01

Home » The Times Online

‘Madeleine McCann was abducted by an opportunistic paedophile’

Mark Williams-Thomas: Analysis
April 28, 2008

The investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann is like no other I have seen before.

I have followed this case from the beginning. I visited the village of Praia da Luz within hours of Madeleine’s disappearance and have returned on numerous occasions to examine what happened on May 3 last year.

I believe that Madeleine was abducted outside her family’s apartment by an opportunistic paedophile with local connections. And I would be very surprised if this person has not been back to the area or still frequents it.

On the evening she disappeared I believe Madeleine woke up and cried for a short time while her parents were dining at a nearby tapas bar at the Ocean Club resort. When she realised that her parents were not there she climbed out of bed and walked around the apartment. She found the back patio door partly open so she walked out, went down the small flight of steps, through the metal gate and turned right down towards the entrance to the tapas bar. It was at this point that she was abducted. Interestingly, police dogs first tracked a scent down this exact route. It is a vital clue that has been largely ignored. Unfortunately, although this area is in range of a CCTV camera at the nearby super-market, it was not working that night.

Statistically the abduction of a child is very rare. On average it happens to six children a year in Britain. However, if we look at the abduction and murder of Sarah Payne in July 2000 we can see that she was snatched by a passing stranger while her brothers were just steps behind.

Madeleine became the victim of an opportunist and predatory paedophile. The abductor either lives in or had contact with Praia da Luz. This is not the sort of resort you just happen upon. For the past 12 months the Portuguese police have pursued only two lines of inquiry: that Gerry and Kate McCann were involved or that their daughter was abducted by a stranger. They have focused steadfastly on the first line. It is quite correct for the police to consider the parents as suspects because most murdered children are killed by a relative or someone they know. But the police do not seem to have any real evidence against Mr and Mrs McCann and they have vehemently denied any involvement.

Mr and Mrs McCann believe their daughter was abducted and trafficked abroad but Madeleine does not fit the profile. Girls are trafficked into the sex trade as prostitutes or for domestic slavery, both with financial gain to the seller and purchaser. Who was to gain from her trafficking?

The so-called sightings in other countries, although genuinely intended, are a distraction and prove to be of little value after the initial two weeks. After all who is going to openly walk out with the most wanted child in the world? For months it was genuinely assumed the abductor had entered the apartment and taken Madeleine from her bed. But I do not believe that a paedophile was watching the apartment or that an offender entered the apartment.

This would be too high risk as the offender would not know that someone was not inside. Britain has not seen a single case of a predatory paedophile entering premises and abducting a child where the occupants of the house are unknown to the offender.

The problem with the police investigation was that it was crucially flawed from the very start. It was the worst-preserved crime scene I have seen.

The investigation is now all but closed. The police have insufficient evidence to charge Mr and Mrs McCann and when their arguido status is lifted the couple could return to Portugal without fear of arrest or prosecution.

They could then properly coordinate an investigation to find out what really did happen to Madeleine.

Mark Williams-Thomas is a former detective and authority on paedophile crimes

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Post by Verdi 29.09.18 1:47

The BBC - again !!!

Sunday 6th May 2007

The 'family-friendly' holiday firm

Three-year-old British girl Madeleine McCann was abducted from a Mark Warner resort in Portugal's popular holiday area, the Algarve.

The holiday firm had just one chalet when it began 33 years ago, but now takes about 50,000 people abroad every year, and has developed a family-friendly reputation.

The Ocean Club in the village of Praia da Luz is Mark Warner's only resort in Portugal.

It was from an apartment there that Madeleine McCann, from Leicestershire, was taken on Thursday evening.

The resort offers babysitting and creche services but Madeleine's parents, Gerry and Kate, dining just yards away, were popping back regularly to check on their three children.

Mark Warner describes the Ocean Club as offering individual villa-style accommodation, set around a series of private areas with their own pool and bar, cafe, and restaurant facilities.

It is a very relaxed, very British-focused place, English-speaking staff - many of them have professional child-care qualifications

Its childcare services include a creche with an outdoor play area, and nannies who organise supervised activities for children.

There is also babysitting, and a "dining-out" creche service in the evenings for children aged four months to nine years - parents eating in the resort's restaurants drop the children off and pick them up later.

Prices for a fortnight at Ocean Club rise to £1,675 per adult at the height of the season.

Paul and Susan Moyse, who are regular holidaymakers at Ocean Club, have always regarded the resort as a safe place.

Mr Moyse said: "It's an idyllic resort. Fantastic place."

Mrs Moyse added: "It's paradise. Nothing ever happens here, never."

Simon Calder, travel editor for the Independent newspaper, says Mark Warner has developed a reputation for "extremely family-friendly" holidays, offering "everything from giving face-painting classes to younger children, to teaching older children snorkelling and windsurfing".

"It's not quite an all-inclusive resort in the traditional sense but it is a very relaxed, very British-focused place, English-speaking staff - many of them have professional child-care qualifications," he said.

The facilities for the children are probably better than the facilities for the adults
James Wilkinson
holidaymaker

He added: "The situation at the Ocean Club in Portugal is that this is part of a larger complex, so it's not exclusively Mark Warner, but what the company does provide is a couple of services.

"First of all they've got something called a drop-off creche which means if you're dining in one of the resort restaurants you just leave your children there.

"A lot of parents will think 'Well, we don't actually want to do that because we don't want to disturb them when we're taking them home'.

"There is also baby-sitting available at an extra charge."

Off guard

Mr Calder said Mark Warner had a "flawless record", and like any British tour operator had a legal and moral obligation to keep the highest standards.

Ocean Club in Luz in the Algarve
Madeleine was last seen by her father sleeping soundly

"But this is a holiday resort, it's not a prison camp. This is somewhere where people go to relax and it is a very lovely part of the world," he said.

"You can completely understand people maybe being off their guard, and certainly you don't get the high fences that you might find in some other resorts with security guards, simply because nobody would imagine you would ever need them."

James Wilkinson and his wife, from Chorleywood, Hertfordshire, will be going to Mark Warner in Greece for the fourth year running this summer, with their two children aged four and two.

Mr Wilkinson said: "Mark Warner is a fantastic family holiday where parents can get some time to themselves.

"The facilities for the children are probably better than the facilities for the adults. They know if the children are happy the parents will be happy.

"What I do know about this Portugal resort is it is quite different from other Mark Warner resorts.

"All the resorts we've been to have been pretty much self-contained and away from the local town.

"I've never once had any concern at all about safety and security."

Swiss beginnings

Mark Warner was founded in 1974 with just one chalet in the Swiss ski resort of Verbier.

Originally the idnowea was to offer activity-based breaks for adults, but over the years facilities have been developed to improve accommodation and offer better childcare.

Its summer destinations feature 10 beach resorts in Corsica, Egypt, Greece, Portugal, Mauritius, Sardinia and Sri Lanka, plus two in the French Alps.

The firm, which is based in London, says it is committed to doing all it can to support the McCanns.

It has sent out two counsellors, while directors of Mark Warner are also in the resort to help "in any way possible".

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/leicestershire/6627799.stm

Reality alert !!!   This is the 21st century - nowhere on earth is a safe haven.  Would you leave your car unlocked overnight?  Oh yes, I guess you would if was getting a bit whiffy.

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Post by Verdi 05.10.18 1:15

Lies, beatings, secret trials: the dark side of police handling Madeleine case



  • Saturday 15 September 2007 22:07


According to his friends, Chief Inspector Goncalo Amaral of the Portuguese Policia Judiciaria, co-leader of the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann from the Mark Warner Ocean Club in Praia da Luz, is a dedicated and capable detective, determined to do whatever it takes to find her – or those responsible for murdering her.

As a foreign reporter in Portugal, it is difficult to form a view. Thanks to the country's stringent judicial secrecy laws, Amaral is officially forbidden from talking to the media.

I confronted the sweaty, corpulent figure in an ill-fitting jacket twice last Friday: the first time at 10am, as he sat slurping coffee and cakes at the Kalahary cafe in Portimao with his colleague, Chief Inspector Guillermino Encarnacao; the second just before 3pm, when the two men made their way from a restaurant to a waiting black Mercedes, in which they were driven 400 yards to meet officials at the courthouse.

The reaction was the same both times: "No speak! No speak!" was all Amaral would say, making a swatting motion as though batting away an insect.

But Amaral's official silence is not the only difference between him and his counterparts in Britain.


In the UK, it is unlikely he would be leading the McCann inquiry at all.

Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry may never be charged with anything, despite their present status as arguidos, or official suspects, and by the end of last week, apparently well-placed sources were admitting that any case against them is circumstantial and weak.

Amaral, however, is in a similar position. He, too, is an arguido, facing possible trial on a serious criminal charge arising from a murder case brought to court in 2004, the last occasion a little girl vanished in the Algarve.

The Mail on Sunday can today reveal new details of this case, the subject of a draconian judicial order that has stopped most sources who know about the case from talking to the Portuguese Press.

According to the order, documents about the case have been restricted to a handful of officials, while the next stage of the process – a hearing at which Amaral and four fellow officers may be asked formal questions – will be conducted in secret.
It is believed that this is set for next month.

Three of Amaral's senior PJ colleagues have been made suspects for the torture of the missing girl's mother, Leonor Cipriano, who has been convicted of killing her daughter Joana, aged eight, and jailed for 16 years.


As for Amaral, the claim against him is "omisado de denuncia" – that he tried to hide the evidence of the alleged torture or, in other words, attempted a cover-up. He is said to deny it strenuously.

In internet blogs and newspaper columns, Amaral's supporters have claimed that the Cipriano case is built on lies – a vicious smear against a decent detective trying to do his job.

It has, they say, "no connection" to the Madeleine McCann inquiry.

Experienced lawyers in Portimao, the town 12 miles from Praia da Luz where Amaral is PJ chief, disagree.

The case against the detectives began as a complaint lodged by Cipriano's lawyer, they pointed out, but has now been adopted by the public prosecutor.

"In order to bring formal charges, the public prosecutor has to believe there is a strong case," said Oliveira Trindad, who has practised law in the area for more than ten years.


"That means that after assessing all the evidence, he thinks that if the case goes to trial, a conviction is more likely than not."
That decision is likely to be made well before the McCann case is closed.

There are, to be sure, many differences between Leonor Cipriano and Kate McCann.

But there are also similarities, starting with the fact that although the bodies of their daughters have not been found, Amaral and his PJ colleagues have long been convinced that both girls are dead.

No one would suggest that in the course of the marathon interrogations that preceded their departure from Portugal last weekend, Kate or Gerry McCann were the victims of physical violence.

But at times it seemed they were also being subjected to torment, albeit of a different, psychological kind.

It, too, say Portimao's criminal defence lawyers, may have been inspired by PJ officers desperate to achieve the end they sought with Cipriano – a confession.

It isn't hard to locate the source of some of the McCanns' current difficulties: Hugo Beaty's bar.

There, amid the burnt orange concrete of the Estrela apartment complex, a five-minute walk from the Ocean Club, most of the seats along the shady terrace and more inside will be taken all day by reporters with laptops, authors of a daily verbal torrent that has come to seem unstoppable.

After Kate and Gerry's abrupt return to Leicestershire last Sunday, almost nothing happened in the McCann case last week.

The only verified fact is that after considering a ten-volume PJ dossier about Madeleine's disappearance on May 3, Pedro Miguel dos Anjos Frias, a junior judge in Portimao, decided to grant certain requests made by the prosecutor, Joao Cunha de Magalhaes.


Every news outlet covering the story – a waterfront that now extends across the whole of Europe to the major American TV networks and even, unbelievably, a paper in war-torn Somalia – has stated that these requests were for warrants to seize items including Kate McCann's private diary, Gerry's computer and (though this seems slightly less certain) Madeleine's beloved cuddle cat.

There is, however, nothing approaching official confirmation of these claims.

Like everything else about the case, the details of the prosecutor's approach to the judge are covered, supposedly, by the judicial secrecy laws, under which the penalty – in theory – for making unauthorised disclosures is two years in prison.

Thus it is that like almost everything else being broadcast and published beyond Portugal's borders about the hunt for Madeleine, the claim that the police want to read Kate's diary has reached its audience via Hugo Beaty's bar.

Every day there starts the same way shortly after it opens at 9am, with an informal briefing to the foreign Press by a locally resident British woman who normally makes a meagre living acting as an occasional interpreter – for the Policia Judiciaria.

Every morning, the woman – who asked me not to publish her name – goes through the Portuguese tabloids and translates their ever-more febrile articles.

Every afternoon, the foreigners – almost none of whom can speak more than the most basic Portuguese, nor claim a single, genuine source inside the police investigation – recycle the tales for consumers abroad.

Portuguese police reportedly fear that they will never find Madeleine McCann's body.

By the end of last week, some of the assertions made by the Portuguese had become part of a settled consensus.

For example, it was reported from Berlin to Baltimore that the police had already made a photocopy of Kate's diary – which, if true, would mean they had broken the law – and merely wanted to obtain the judge's approval to use it as evidence.
The reason they are so keen on it, it was alleged, is that it suggests she found her children "hyperactive" and difficult to handle, while railing at her husband's allegedly dilatory, hands-off approach.

The claims about the diary's contents were first published on Thursday by Jose Manuel Ribeiro, crime correspondent for the Lisbon daily Diario de Noticias.

By chance I ran into him that same afternoon, outside the apartment where Madeleine disappeared.

I congratulated him on his scoop, but he shook his head, disconsolate. Already, he complained, it was turning to dust.

Ribeiro said he had been given the story by an impeccable inside source, but already officials in Lisbon were denying it, and the source himself could no longer assure him it was true.


"Why is bad information getting out to the public?" he asked. "Because we're being given it."

Somehow, however, the denials that had made Ribeiro so angry did not get through to the foreigners.

If the questionable leak had been planted for a purpose – to increase the pressure on the hapless McCanns – it may well have succeeded.

And, in the foreign public's mind, the germinating notion that Kate might have killed her daughter because she could not handle her had been nurtured by a further dollop of manure.

A similar, apparently sanctioned but inaccurate leak had already gone around the world to still more devastating effect.

Early on Monday evening, TV channels began to report that British forensic scientists had made a "100 per cent" DNA match to Madeleine from "biological material" – said to be hair and "bodily fluids" – recovered from the Renault Scenic that the McCanns did not hire until 25 days after she vanished, suggesting that they had hidden her body on May 3 and moved it weeks after her death.

With no time for reporters to make checks before their deadlines, the story spread like foot and mouth to almost every British front page the next morning.


It was only in the ensuing days that it began, spectacularly, to unravel.

The match was not 100 per cent after all, it transpired, but 80 per cent or less – a level that, according to Professor Alec Jeffries, DNA matching's inventor, might mean that the material had not come from Madeleine at all, but another member of her family.

Even if it had, other experts said, it would prove very little.

Among readers who followed the forensic details, the case against the McCanns had been seen to suffer damage.

But others were left with a clear impression – that the PJ now believed they had real evidence that the McCanns must have been responsible for Madeleine's (still unconfirmed) death.

As for those who still harboured doubts, more rococo "revelations" were being published widely by the end of the week, such as the claim that having bundled Madeleine's body into the car, the McCanns drove it to the marina in nearby Lagos.

There they are said to have hired a boat, swore its owner into their conspiracy, then sailed into the Atlantic, into which they tipped their child, weighted down with rocks.

Could such stories really be part of a conscious PJ strategy? Some lawyers around the Portimao courthouse believe that they could.

"Portuguese journalists aren't just making this stuff up," said Oliveira Trindad.

"They are getting it from the police, of course, and the justice officers, the people working for the prosecutors. It's obvious that some information is coming from the PJ."

Some of it, he added, appears to be accurate – so making it that much easier for the same sources to seed disinformation.

Another Portimao lawyer, who asked not to be named, claimed the PJ was fighting a "propaganda war" with the McCanns.
"It is the fault of the British Press," he said.

"They were the ones who started saying, 'You're no good, you're no good.'

"If you say a lie like that many times, so many people believe it. You cannot blame the PJ for wanting to hit back."
But there might be another reason.

"Some people think journalists pay their PJ sources," the second lawyer said, citing a case where an officer from Lisbon is facing criminal charges after being caught red-handed copying secret documents about a fraud case, allegedly for private profit.

"But they also have an interest in the case and its coverage."

With the forensic evidence apparently confused and contradictory, "it seems the main goal of the PJ now is to get a confession. It's like in the films, 'Aha, we have a confession, let's take them to court.'

"It's normal to want a confession when they don't have much else."

Intense interrogation of the McCanns has so far failed. But perhaps, the lawyer implied, using the media might be another way of applying the third degree.

"I want to believe that the Portuguese police do everything the right way," said Joao Grade, the lawyer for Leonor Cipriano.

"But sometimes, if they really think someone is guilty, as they did with Leonor, they may find other ways to get what they want. It's only human.

"When they believe someone has killed a child, it's normal that they will apply pressure.

"In the McCann case, it seems that the police have what they consider half-proofs.


"But it's not airtight, it doesn't interlock, so maybe they need more."

As he spoke, I found myself recalling British miscarriages of justice: cases such as the Birmingham Six, wrongly convicted of IRA pub bombings that killed 21, where the police, under tremendous pressure to "get a result", built dishonest but convincing prosecutions based around confessions.

Could the same thing be happening to the McCanns? The pressure on the police is certainly intense.

The loss of a child evokes horror everywhere. On the Algarve, however, the need to solve the case – and, perhaps, not to leave the fear that Madeleine was killed or abducted by an unknown paedophile – has other roots as well.

"The Algarve is a family destination, and situations like this are not agreeable to anyone," said Elderico Viegas, the regional tourism authority president.


"Our reputation for safety is one of our most important values – especially with the British, who make up our biggest market."
And Algarve tourism, worth about £2.8billion a year and growing rapidly, is, Viegas said, the single biggest component of the entire Portuguese economy.

The police had, he added, mishandled the media, giving rise to damaging speculation.

"But for me, the details are not important. What's important is the economy. I was born and brought up here and I can't remember the last time a tourist was murdered." So far, he added, visitor numbers this year are up.

Central to many British miscarriages of justice was a shared, deeply ingrained belief among police and prosecutors that their suspects "had" to be guilty.

With the Birmingham Six, it was founded on botched forensic tests that "told" investigators that the men had been handling the explosive nitroglycerine – false positives that arose because they had been playing with cards coated in the harmless chemical nitrocellulose.

In Praia da Luz, there are signs of a similar mindset at work, derived from equally tendentious "evidence".

For example, said a local source who knows several of the PJ inquiry team, from an early stage detectives laid great weight on Kate McCann's apparent composure when she appeared in public.


One of the strangest aspects of Portuguese coverage of the case has been frequent recourse to media psychologists, who have made all manner of deductions about her personality and state of mind by "analysing" her TV image, claiming that the absence of tears and presence of carefully applied make-up indicates a "cold", "manipulative" or even "psychopathic" personality.

In other words, someone capable of reacting instantly to the death of her daughter, whether deliberate or accidental, by deciding that she had to hide the body and conceal what had happened, and able to persuade her husband and perhaps other "accomplices" to go along with her plot.


Disturbingly, said the local source, such analysis has not been confined to the media.

"Pretty early on, they had forensic psychologists in, studying hours of video footage, drawing extremely unfavourable conclusions about Kate's personality," she said.

"You could say she's been damned by her stiff upper lip."

There have been reported claims that Kate McCann had "confessed" to killing Madeleine to a local Catholic priest.


But the Rev Hubbard Haynes, the Anglican vicar who lives in Praia da Luz and got closer to the McCanns than anyone during their months in Portugal, refuted them with controlled fury.

A young, passionate Canadian, who took up his post a week after Madeleine's disappearance, he said: "When I mention Maddie, Gerry and Kate in my own prayers, I find myself weeping.

"I have gone out into the fields and looked in the hedgerows, begging God for some sign that will help us find her, and I have wept because He has not given it to us yet.

"All I can say is that my tears are as nothing to the tears I have seen shed by Kate and Gerry.

"They may not have cried for the cameras, but to say they do not weep in private is facile and offensive.

"The man and woman I have known for the past four months are a couple whose lives have become unbearably empty because their little girl was missing.

"I do not recognise those people in recent media reports, and I find the idea that they had anything to do with her disappearance just inconceivable.


"There is great evil in this world, and someone has taken this child."

Other aspects of the emerging mindset against the McCanns seemed equally questionable.

Several Portuguese lawyers and journalists, along with a uniformed police officer from the National Republican Guard I spoke to outside the Ocean Club apartment, told me solemnly not only that the McCanns and their friends were "swingers" who had taken their holiday together to indulge in group sex (an assertion made repeatedly by the Portuguese Press), but that "everyone knows" that its tolerance of orgies is the Mark Warner Ocean Club resort's main selling point.

One afternoon I decided to test this proposition, approaching two holiday reps there, dressed in their red Mark Warner sweatshirts. "Er, is this a good place for swingers, then?" I asked.

They looked at me in total bafflement. "Swingers?" one replied.

"Look around you, sir. Most of our guests are retired, or families with children."

Another assertion published several times last week is that, on the night that Madeleine disappeared, the McCanns phoned Sky TV before contacting the police – another claim echoed by the uniformed cop.

Outside the Portimao courthouse, I asked Sky's reporter Ashish Joshi if he thought this might be true.

He rolled his eyes wearily. "It's just nonsense," he said.

"The first anyone at Sky knew about Maddy was when the story appeared on the Press Association wire.

"I was asked about this just yesterday by a Portuguese reporter. I told him it was crap. And this morning, his paper printed it."
I passed this on to the Republican Guard officer, but he was unmoved.


His unit, he said, had handled the case in its early stages, and from the start he and his colleagues had been convinced there was something fishy about the McCanns.

"My partner was there on the night of May 3," he said, "and I can tell you, that apartment was full of people, Kate was screaming – and yet her twins didn't wake up.

"How do you explain that? They must have been drugged. Nobody on the force believed their story about a kidnap for a moment.

"That little girl is dead, for sure. Soon you will see the truth."

Why the need for such bizarre allegations? The answer, I believe, is that there is a massive hole at the heart of the emerging PJ theory.


When Madeleine disappeared the McCanns did not have a car.

The Ocean Club is in the middle of a busy resort, and the notion that somehow the McCanns found a way to conceal her without transport, and then went to dinner with their friends as if nothing were amiss is beyond credibility.

One Portuguese journalist suggested to me that they might have hidden her on a scrubby headland a few minutes' walk away.


But as I found when I attempted to go for a run there, at night it is inhabited by feral dogs, whose barking would have made the digging of some putative shallow grave impossible.


The PJ enjoys a high reputation in Portugal.

"They are ranked among the top five police forces in the world," attorney Trindad said, albeit admitting he did not know the source of this curious international ranking.

Most PJ officers are graduates, and would-be entrants face severe competition, with a battery of psychometric, physical and academic tests before they can even be considered for the PJ training school.

The force's Press office likes to compare the PJ to the American FBI: "We are an elite," spokeswoman Ana Mouro said.

But beneath the veneer, as the case of Leonor Cipriano suggests, the reality can look less impressive.

"She is nothing like Kate McCann," her lawyer Joao Grade said.

"She is very poor, with maybe only three years of schooling, and her children have several fathers.

"She did not get to meet the Pope and she did not have the support of Sky and the BBC.

"But I tell you this: if Kate had been treated like Leonor, she would have done what Leonor did – ended by saying, 'OK, OK, I'm guilty, and this is how I did it.'"


The special judicial order – imposed on top of the usual Portuguese secrecy – means not only that Grade is prevented from disclosing virtually anything about the Cipriano case, but that pre-trial hearings of the charges against the detectives, due as soon as next month, will be held in camera.


The Mail on Sunday has established crucial alleged details from other legal sources in Portimao.

After Joana disappeared in September 2004, Leonor was arrested by the PJ in Portimao on October 14 at 8am.

Held there and in the city of Faro without access to a lawyer, she was interrogated without sleep for 22 hours.

Then, after a two-hour respite, she was interrogated again until 7am on October 16.


By this time, as photos published by the Portuguese media make clear, her face was a mass of bruises.


According to Grade: "Not just her face but her whole body was black and blue."


The police said she "tried to commit suicide" by throwing herself down stairs.

If the alleged torture was to force a confession, it succeeded – only for Leonor to withdraw it when she finally saw her lawyer the next day.

The supporters of the accused police have claimed that the officers must be innocent because Cipriano could not pick out her alleged attackers in an identity parade.

However, according to the sources in Portimao, this is because they are not alleged to have beaten her themselves, but to have brought in paid thugs.


In any event, she was convicted and sentenced to 21 years.

Last June, this was reduced on appeal to 16 – though one of the five appeal court judges issued a dissenting opinion, stating that he was convinced she had been assaulted in custody and was innocent.

If the criminal case against the PJ officers does lead to convictions, Grade said, she will appeal again. He has also lodged a case in the European Court of Human Rights.


Strangely enough, Chief Inspector Goncalo Amaral is not the only link between the Cipriano and McCann cases. Another of the senior officers who is now an arguido is the recently retired Chief Inspector Paulo Pereira Cristovao.


He is one of the McCanns' principal scourges – not as a detective, but in his new capacity as a columnist for Diario de Noticias, among the most active of Portuguese newspapers in its pursuit of stories about Madeleine derived from leaks.

"There is another link between the Cipriano and McCann cases," a Portimao lawyer claimed.


"You know, it's like if Manchester United lose a big game: next week the pressure they have to win is very big.
"The PJ are beginning to worry that now they might lose the Cipriano case.

"If that happens, they have to win with the McCanns."

Of course, there is yet another connection.

If Leonor Cipriano did not kill Joana, the chances of discovering the truth – or indeed her body – are now remote.


And as the McCanns have stated repeatedly, if they are innocent, the enormous effort being poured into trying to blame them is effort diverted from the search for a missing four-year-old girl, and the person or persons who abducted her.

That is a thought so grim that it almost makes one wish that the mindset so evident around Praia da Luz had a real foundation.
My fear is that it has as much solidity as the sandcastles on the beach.

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/lies-beatings-secret-trials-the-dark-side-of-police-handling-madeleine-case-6622113.html
....................

What an utterly disgraceful example of fake journalism.  No wonder there is no name attached to it.

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Post by Verdi 06.10.18 1:45

Is The Cry a true story? The inspiration behind the gripping BBC hit starring Jenna Coleman

The thriller has been adapted from Helen FitzGerald's 2013 book of the same name.

By
Emily Sheridan

  • 14:42, 5 OCT 2018
  • Updated16:09, 5 OCT 2018


Jenna Coleman 's new series The Cry has had viewers gripped since it started on BBC1 on Sunday.

The four-part thriller tells the story of a young mother Joanna (Jenna), who travels from Scotland to Australia with her husband Alistair (Ewen Leslie) and their baby son Noah.

The family have jetted Down Under so Alistair can fight for custody of his daughter Chloe from his Australia ex-wife Alexandra (Asher Keddie).

However, the couple are rocked when little Noah is abducted from their hire car while they pop into a store in a small rural town in Victoria.

The series is adapted from the 2013 novel of the same name, written by Australian author Helen FitzGerald.

Helen, 52, grew up in Australia but moved to Scotland as an adult where she worked in a high risk offenders unit and HM Prison Barlinnie in Glasgow.

She then went on to work as a criminal justice social worker in and around Pasiley, but has recently take a break from her day job.

Now a mother to two grown-up children Anna and Joe, Helen admits being inspired to write The Cry following two particularly hellish long-haul flights from the UK to Australia when she was a young mother.

She told Crime Fiction Love in 2013: "A few hours after my Dad was diagnosed with a brain tumour, I jumped on a plane with my two children, then five and two.

"I was upset and worried, and not particularly in control of my toddler, who was having great fun running up and down the aisle while I was sobbing in my seat.

"When the air hostess approached me, I was expecting her to ask if she could help in any way, but she leant down and said: 'Your children are upsetting the passengers.' I went a bit nuts. This is basically what happens to Joanna in the first chapter of the book."

Nine years later, when making the same flight when her father's cancer had returned, Helen was sat behind a woman with screaming children.

She recalled: "I had no children with me for this flight, but the woman in front of me had three under five. They screamed for eight hours, and I wanted to kill her. How quickly we forget…


"Despite the screaming children, I wrote the final scene of The Cry on that flight."

In The Cry, viewers see Jenna's character Joanna's mental anguish as she deals with being a new mother and the aftermath of her baby's abduction.

Helen admits her own time as a new mother struggling to cope also inspired her novel.

She told The Herald : "When I look back on that time now, I know what it was. I've just been through a period of serious anxiety and depression, so now I understand what was happening to me then.

"It's a common sign of post-natal depression, the feeling that everyone else is coping. I was obsessed with child-rearing books too, desperate to get it right."


The writer also revealed she was influenced by two high-profile child abductions.

She was growing up in Australia in 1980 when Lindy Chamberlain was wrongly convicted of murdering her nine-week-old daughter Azaria.

Lindy and her now ex-husband Michael maintained a dingo snatched their baby when she was sleeping in a tent during a camping trip to Uluru (Ayers Rock) in Australia's Northern Territory.

After being convicted, Lindy spent several years behind bars for the death of her daughter. However, the conviction was quashed in 1988 following the discovery of further evidence.

Helen was also interested in the ongoing search for British girl Madeleine McCann, who vanished from a Portugal holiday apartment in May 2007.

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 2_Parents-of-missing-girl-Madeleine-McCann

She told The Herald: "I have always believed both of them. But thinking about their cases made me wonder – what kind of couple would get away with something like this? What would have to be going on behind the scenes in that relationship?

"Lindy was incredibly naïve and open and just had no clue, and she got slaughtered by the media. Her case was really the first example of trial by television.

"Women are always the target, especially when babies are involved. No matter how much we talk about parental or gender equality, that’s what happens."

The Cry: Episode 2 returns to BBC1 on Sunday 7 October at 9pm.


https://www.mirror.co.uk/tv/tv-news/cry-true-story-inspiration-behind-13367789

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Post by Verdi 08.10.18 16:03

‘Madeleine McCann was abducted by an opportunistic paedophile’

Mark Williams-Thomas: Analysis - April 28, 2008

The investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann is like no other I have seen before.

I have followed this case from the beginning. I visited the village of Praia da Luz within hours of Madeleine’s disappearance and have returned on numerous occasions to examine what happened on May 3 last year.

I believe that Madeleine was abducted outside her family’s apartment by an opportunistic paedophile with local connections. And I would be very surprised if this person has not been back to the area or still frequents it.

On the evening she disappeared I believe Madeleine woke up and cried for a short time while her parents were dining at a nearby tapas bar at the Ocean Club resort. When she realised that her parents were not there she climbed out of bed and walked around the apartment. She found the back patio door partly open so she walked out, went down the small flight of steps, through the metal gate and turned right down towards the entrance to the tapas bar.

It was at this point that she was abducted. Interestingly, police dogs first tracked a scent down this exact route. It is a vital clue that has been largely ignored. Unfortunately, although this area is in range of a CCTV camera at the nearby super-market, it was not working that night.

Statistically the abduction of a child is very rare. On average it happens to six children a year in Britain. However, if we look at the abduction and murder of Sarah Payne in July 2000 we can see that she was snatched by a passing stranger while her brothers were just steps behind.

Madeleine became the victim of an opportunist and predatory paedophile. The abductor either lives in or had contact with Praia da Luz. This is not the sort of resort you just happen upon. For the past 12 months the Portuguese police have pursued only two lines of inquiry: that Gerry and Kate McCann were involved or that their daughter was abducted by a stranger. They have focused steadfastly on the first line. It is quite correct for the police to consider the parents as suspects because most murdered children are killed by a relative or someone they know. But the police do not seem to have any real evidence against Mr and Mrs McCann and they have vehemently denied any involvement.

Mr and Mrs McCann believe their daughter was abducted and trafficked abroad but Madeleine does not fit the profile. Girls are trafficked into the sex trade as prostitutes or for domestic slavery, both with financial gain to the seller and purchaser. Who was to gain from her trafficking?

The so-called sightings in other countries, although genuinely intended, are a distraction and prove to be of little value after the initial two weeks. After all who is going to openly walk out with the most wanted child in the world? For months it was genuinely assumed the abductor had entered the apartment and taken Madeleine from her bed. But I do not believe that a paedophile was watching the apartment or that an offender entered the apartment.

This would be too high risk as the offender would not know that someone was not inside. Britain has not seen a single case of a predatory paedophile entering premises and abducting a child where the occupants of the house are unknown to the offender.

The problem with the police investigation was that it was crucially flawed from the very start. It was the worst-preserved crime scene I have seen.
The investigation is now all but closed. The police have insufficient evidence to charge Mr and Mrs McCann and when their arguido status is lifted the couple could return to Portugal without fear of arrest or prosecution.

They could then properly coordinate an investigation to find out what really did happen to Madeleine.

Mark Williams-Thomas is a former detective and authority on paedophile crimes

The Times Online April 2008

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Post by Verdi 13.10.18 1:20

Parents release last known photo of Madeleine

By Richard Edwards and Fiona Govan in Praia da Luz
12:01AM BST 24 May 2007

[Note:  12:01 AM]

The family of missing Madeleine McCann today released the last known photograph of their daughter before her abduction in the Algarve three weeks ago.

Smiling and dangling her feet into a swimming pool, Madeleine, four, is shown enjoying her holiday just hours before she was snatched from her bed.

The picture was taken by Madeleine's mother Kate, 38, on her own camera.

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 News-graphics-2007-_636254a

Madeleine is pictured wearing a pink smock top, white shorts and a sun hat as she cools her feet in the swimming pool. The picture was taken at 2.29pm on May 3.

Less than eight hours later, before 10pm that night, Madeleine disappeared. She had been sleeping in the family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, next to the twins, when she was taken away.

Detectives investigating her disappearance yesterday re-interviewed two people as witnesses in the case.

The two were believed to be Michaela Walczuch, a German woman who is the lover of Robert Murat, and her estranged Portuguese husband Luis Antonio, who works as a pool cleaner.

Mr Murat is a British ex-pat who has been identified by police as a formal suspect in the case.A senior police source described yesterday's questioning, which lasted several hours, as "normal and routine". The pair were first questioned 10 days ago as a result of their connection to Mr Murat.

Mr Murat, who has not been charged or even formally arrested but remains the police's main line of inquiry, lives with his mother in a villa less than 100 yards from the Algarve holiday apartment where Madeleine was snatched three weeks ago.

He strenuously denies any involvement in Madeleine's disappearance and is said to be in a state of "near collapse" over the allegations. Police have said that they will continue to investigate those with links to Mr Murat.

They have already searched premises belonging to a Russian computer expert who reportedly had telephone conversations with Mr Murat in the hours immediately following Madeleine's disappearance.

The latest development came amid local media reports that forensic tests on evidence taken from the McCanns' apartment and Mr Murat's home had yielded no clues.

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 News-graphics-2007-_636253a

The head of the Forensic Medicine Institute of Portugal told the Portuguese newspaper Correio da Manha that tests on the samples had so far proved inconclusive.

"It is not like on the television show CSI," said Duarte Nuno Vieira, who explained that the investigation would take time.


"The analyses are ongoing," he added. "They're far from over, and we'll only be able to draw conclusions once they're completed."

Detailed DNA analysis on hair, fibres and sweat samples are not expected until at least Saturday, it was reported, at which point police may be in a position to arrest Mr Murat or drop the case against him completely.

The police search for Madeleine was strongly criticised yesterday as a leading expert said the Portuguese investigation had been plagued with "serious errors".


Mark Williams-Thomas, a former officer with Surrey police who worked on the case of Sarah Payne, the seven-year-old murdered by paedophile Roy Whiting, said detectives had failed to seal off the apartment when the four-year-old vanished and had not carried out proper forensic searches.

He said the investigation had hit "a brick wall" as a result and called for British detectives to carry out a full review of the case to ensure that everything was being done to find Madeleine.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1552519/Parents-release-last-known-photo-of-Madeleine.html

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Post by Verdi 15.10.18 15:29

Producer quits 'dishonest' BBC programme about Madeleine McCann

By VANESSA ALLEN
Last updated at 00:15 26 November 2007

A producer quit a BBC programme about Madeleine McCann as he felt the documentary verged "on the dishonest", it was disclosed yesterday.

David Mills, who was the original producer on last week's Panorama special on the disappearance, walked out after an angry row with th programme's editor and then wrote a stinging email to the BBC, attacking it for losing its journalistic passion.

He said: "So far as I can see, investigative journalism at the BBC is over.

"The broadcast script contains nuances that suggest that the McCanns still have a case to answer. The BBC should have had the courage to state that this is simply not so."

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 MccannMS1711_468x280

Mr Mills, who has a 40-year career as a documentary-maker, asked the BBC to take his name off the end credits despite working on the programme for weeks.

He said he wanted to focus on the apparent campaign of disinformation put out by Portuguese police to put pressure on Kate and Gerry McCann, and to criticise press coverage of the case.

But he said the end programme put across the case both for and against the McCanns and reached no final conclusion.

In an email to Panorama editor Sandy Smith, he criticised the programme's "intellectual impoverishment" and said it was "far below the standard of any work that I or my company would wish to be associated with".

He said the programme "verges on the dishonest" and was "a laboured, pedestrian extended news report" which he branded "shameful".

He wrote: "The real question must be how, without any meaningful evidence, the Portuguese police and the media in Portugal and Britain have been able to convince most people that the couple were involved.

"Yet while the programme drips innuendos against the McCanns, it does not put a single challenging question to anyone in the Portuguese police or to anyone in the media. This is truly astonishing."

The incident is one of several controversies Panorama has faced this year including a report on Scientology by journalist John Sweeney, in which he lost his temper and turned - in his words - into an "exploding tomato", and a report claiming that wi-fi technology might be harmful, which was denounced by some scientists as "irresponsible".

Mr Smith said the decisions about the programme's content were made after it obtained new footage, including an interview with witness Jane Tanner, and said: "The original version was just not journalistically as important."

McCann family spokesman Clarence Mitchell, a former BBC reporter, said the couple were 'content' with the broadcast version and had spoken to reporter Richard Bilton and told him they considered it 'fair'.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-496385/Producer-quits-dishonest-BBC-programme-Madeleine-McCann.html

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Post by Verdi 15.10.18 15:38

Madeleine 'was killed as she screamed at pervert prowler', police to conclude
By VANESSA ALLEN
Last updated at 13:23 27 November 2007

Madeleine McCann was killed in her family's holiday apartment when she screamed out in alarm at a paedophile intruder, it has been claimed.

Police believe the three-year-old may have been accidentally suffocated by a prowler who panicked when she shouted out.

Fearing that her cries would raise the alarm, he violently silenced her - accidentally killing her - and then grabbed her body and escaped, according to the new theory.

It was that fleeing man - carrying the slumped body of a child - who was spotted by the McCanns' friend Jane Tanner, it was claimed.

The theory was revealed in the respected Portuguese newspaper Publico, which carried a chilling recreation of the supposed chain of events.

The newspaper said the theory was "gaining increasing strength at the centre of the police investigation".

It came a week after Portugal's Attorney General Fernando Pinto Monteiro said he believed Madeleine was "probably dead".

The latest theory came as a blow to Kate and Gerry McCann, who have insisted they believe their daughter is being held somewhere alive.

But it does suggest that detectives are moving away from the belief that the couple were involved in her disappearance.

They are now working on the theory that a prowler monitored the family's routine during their week-long holiday, and carefully chose a moment to strike, Publico reported.

The couple's regular habits - including their meal times and their routine in checking on their children - made it 'easy' for the intruder to pick a moment when he did not think he would be disturbed, the newspaper claimed.

It carried a highly dramatised recreation of the supposed chain of events, which said: "An unexpected event thwarted the prospect of desire. A shout from the British child awakened from her sleep.

"The fear that she would be heard, the urgency to silence her, the violence, probably the suffocation and the unexpected death.

"All this is in minutes. Now one would have to take her out of there, close the door, escape quickly."

The theory was said to be "seriously considered" by senior police officers leading the investigation, but they have not ruled out other possibilities, including that the McCanns could have been involved.

Their spokesman Clarence Mitchell said the report was "extremely distressing" for the couple.

He said: "We do not believe that this is what happened to Madeleine. There has been no evidence to suggest this happened in the apartment at all.
"We are still firmly of the belief that Madeleine is alive and will be found."

The couple were named as official suspects in the case after specialist sniffer dogs detected microscopic traces of blood in their holiday apartment, and the "scent of death" in their hire car.

They have always insisted they believe Madeleine was taken alive from the apartment, and that their friend Miss Tanner saw the suspect fleeing with her.
A source close to the couple said the theory that a paedophile killed her inside the flat and then carried her body away was "ludicrous".

He said: "It is an absolutely ludicrous suggestion. If a paedophile had killed her in the apartment he would have left her there and fled.

"There is no way he would have carried her dead body through the streets where people would have witnessed it."

Mr McCann has told police he checked on the children at about 9pm, and then bumped into a friend, television producer Jeremy Wilkins, and stopped to speak to him.

While the two men were speaking the McCanns' friend Miss Tanner - one of the so-called Tapas Nine - said she walked past them and then saw the fleeing man moments later, at about 9.15pm.

Mr McCann has spoken of his belief that an intruder might have been hiding inside the flat already when he went to check on the children.

But it would still only give the alleged paedophile just a few minutes to supposedly disturb Madeleine into screaming, to accidentally suffocate her and then flee with her body by 9.15pm.

McCann spokesman Mr Mitchell said he did not believe an intruder would have had time to kill Madeleine and escape.

He said: "Any abductor would not have had time to do what is alleged here.

"The only point in this report to draw comfort from is the indication that police no longer believe that Kate and Gerry are involved in Madeleine's disappearance."

A nanny who used to work at the Ocean Club holiday complex has told the McCanns' private detectives that she saw a man trying to lift the window shutters at the same apartment where the McCanns later stayed.

The woman, who has not been named, said the man she saw in December last year looked like the other official suspect in the case, British expat Robert Murat.

His friends dismissed the alleged sighting as a smear and said it could not have been the 34-year-old as he was in Britain from October to January this year.

Miss Tanner has told the McCanns that she could not tell if the man she saw was Mr Murat, as she did not see his face. He denies any involvement in Madeleine's disappearance.

An investigating judge has to decide early next year whether to end the secrecy surrounding the Madeleine McCann case - and decide whether to let her parents and Robert Murat see the police evidence against them.

Heart surgeon Gerry and GP Kate, both 39, have always protested their innocence and claimed an intruder took their daughter.

The McCanns have rubbished the suggestion - thought to have been top of the police list of theories until now - that Madeleine died by accident in their apartment and they disposed of her body as part of a "cover-up."

Claims emerged last night that Portuguese police had initially considered whether the couple could have sold their daughter to paedophiles.

Detectives reportedly believed the couple might have sold Madeleine to a criminal network to ease money worries,

According to sources, they spent "several days" investigating but the wild theory fell apart when they realised the couple were wealthy.

A police source told the Portuguese newspaper 24 Horas: "The police team in charge of the case investigated the possibility that the child had been sold by her own parents because of financial difficulties."

Detectives tried to inspect bank statements but were forced to conclude that the
couple did not have money problems.


The McCanns, who are both doctors, live in a £500,000 house in Rothley, Leicestershire.

Police were said to be suspicious about reports that Mrs McCann screamed: "They've taken her" when she realised Madeleine was missing. She insists she shouted: "She's gone."

Detectives have been unable to seize the couple's bank statements, phone records covering this May or their medical records.

The public prosecutor in the case has refused to authorise such moves unless he sees stronger evidence against them.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-496379/Madeleine-killed-screamed-pervert-prowler-police-conclude.html

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Post by Verdi 20.10.18 1:53

Madeleine McCann's father returns to Portugal to give evidence in libel case

Gerry McCann looks to testify in case against Gonçalo Amaral, who published book about Madeleine's disappearance in 2007

Press Association
Wed 2 Oct 2013 11.30 BST



Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 Gerry-McCann-to-testify-i-008

Madeleine McCann's father has returned to a Portuguese court in the hope that he can give evidence at his family's libel case against a former local police chief who claims Madeleine's abduction was faked.

Gerry McCann wants to testify in the case against Gonçalo Amaral, who published a book about Madeleine's disappearance in May 2007.

The McCanns say the former detective's claims in the book The Truth of the Lie, including suggestions that they hid their daughter's body after she died in an accident and then faked her abduction, damaged the hunt for Madeleine and exacerbated their anguish.

If successful in the case, the family stands to gain around £1m in damages.

Gerry McCann was left frustrated after flying to Portugal last week, when proceedings were adjourned because one of Amaral's lawyers could not be present.

Arriving at the Palace of Justice in Lisbon on Wednesday morning, McCann said he was not sure what would happen "after last week".


"We are here to listen to the judge and hopefully be heard," he told reporters.

He travelled to the Portuguese capital with his sister, Trish Cameron, and his wife Kate McCann's mother, Susan Healy, who are both expected to appear as witnesses in the case.

Kate McCann attended the court last month on the first day of the case, telling reporters she was in Portugal to "stop the damage" she believes is being caused to the search for her daughter.

The court has heard how she had suicidal thoughts after Amaral claimed she had covered up her daughter's death.


Psychologist Alan Pike said that after the publication of the former police chief's book in July 2008, Kate McCann "thought about not being around any more".

Madeleine, who was nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on 3 May 2007 as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

Amaral, who initially led the inquiry into Madeleine's disappearance, was removed from the case in October 2007 after criticising UK police.

British detectives launched a fresh investigation into the youngster's disappearance in July this year and believe she could still be alive.

The Portuguese investigation into Madeleine's disappearance is officially closed.


The case, in which Amaral denies defamation, is expected to finish hearing evidence in November.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/oct/02/madeleine-mccann-father-portuguese-court-evidence-libel-case

Biased media manipulation at it's finest hour.

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Post by Verdi 24.10.18 0:16

Fears Madeleine McCann was 'snatched for rich family' after reports of Morocco sightings

Telegraph Reporters - 24 April 2017

Madeleine McCann may have been abducted by slave traders and sold to a rich family, a former policeman has claimed, amid reports of a possible sighting.

Almost 10 years after the three-year-old girl vanished while the family were on holiday in Portugal, private detectives hired by the McCanns reportedly believe she may have been smuggled by ferry into Africa.

Gangs in Mauritania, West Africa, are known to sell youngsters to wealthy Middle Eastern families.

Colin Sutton, a former Scotland Yard detective, told the Mirror: “The Mauritania line is certainly a possibility and needs to be looked at.

“If someone wanted to get a three-year-old child into Africa it’s the obvious route. The infrastructure and contacts for people smuggling are clearly there.

Private detectives reportedly believe she was snatched and taken to the country via Morocco, where there have been alleged sightings.

It is not known if police have investigated the Mauritania theory as part of their investigations.

Shortly after Madeleine disappeared on May 3, 2007, a traveller reportedly told Crimestoppers they saw a girl that looked like Madeleine on the Tarifa-Tangier ferry, four days after she vanished.

Two days later, a tourist reported seeing a girl “identical” to Madeleine with a man at a petrol station next to an Ibis hotel in Marrakech, the Mirror reported.

According to the newspaper, Mari Olli and British husband Ray Pollard, who live in Spain, said they had not heard of Madeleine’s disappearance when they made the possible sighting and only made the connection when they returned home.


She said the youngster she saw was wearing blue pyjamas, looked “sad” and asked: “Can we see Mummy soon?”

Ms Olli said she alerted Portuguese and UK authorities and gave a statement to Scotland Yard detectives. She followed it up by emailing Leicestershire Police.

Portuguese police files made public a year after Madeleine's disappearance show British police passed on the email to their Portuguese counterparts but Ms Olli says she was never contacted by officers there.

"I try not to think about what I could have done. The one thing I’m still convinced about is that it was Madeleine," she told the Mirror.

Madeleine vanished from Praia da Luz in May 2007 when the three-year-old was sleeping in the family's apartment with her siblings, twins Amelie and Sean.

At the time, her parents, Gerry and Kate, were eating dinner with friends at a restaurant around 40 yards away.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/04/24/fears-madeleine-mccann-snatched-rich-family-reports-morocco/

eyebrows

Team McCann Co. Ltd. do like a touch of the melodrama don't they?  

Give me strength - smuggled out of Portugal for the slave trade?   If a rich whoever wanted a western fair haired child for whatever reason, why not hang around the school gates or some recreation ground - why go the trouble of hanging around a low key holiday resort on the Algarve in the hope of finding a suitable target?  How would this gang of smugglers know that a little three year old girl would be holidaying for a few days in April/May 2007?  How did they know an ideal child was staying at the Ocean Club for a few days in April/May 20?

For crying out loud - get real!

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Post by sar 24.10.18 10:17

@Verdi wrote:Madeleine McCann's father returns to Portugal to give evidence in libel case

Gerry McCann looks to testify in case against Gonçalo Amaral, who published book about Madeleine's disappearance in 2007

Press Association
Wed 2 Oct 2013 11.30 BST



Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 Gerry-McCann-to-testify-i-008

Madeleine McCann's father has returned to a Portuguese court in the hope that he can give evidence at his family's libel case against a former local police chief who claims Madeleine's abduction was faked.

Gerry McCann wants to testify in the case against Gonçalo Amaral, who published a book about Madeleine's disappearance in May 2007.

The McCanns say the former detective's claims in the book The Truth of the Lie, including suggestions that they hid their daughter's body after she died in an accident and then faked her abduction, damaged the hunt for Madeleine and exacerbated their anguish.

If successful in the case, the family stands to gain around £1m in damages.

Gerry McCann was left frustrated after flying to Portugal last week, when proceedings were adjourned because one of Amaral's lawyers could not be present.

Arriving at the Palace of Justice in Lisbon on Wednesday morning, McCann said he was not sure what would happen "after last week".


"We are here to listen to the judge and hopefully be heard," he told reporters.

He travelled to the Portuguese capital with his sister, Trish Cameron, and his wife Kate McCann's mother, Susan Healy, who are both expected to appear as witnesses in the case.

Kate McCann attended the court last month on the first day of the case, telling reporters she was in Portugal to "stop the damage" she believes is being caused to the search for her daughter.

The court has heard how she had suicidal thoughts after Amaral claimed she had covered up her daughter's death.


Psychologist Alan Pike said that after the publication of the former police chief's book in July 2008, Kate McCann "thought about not being around any more".

Madeleine, who was nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on 3 May 2007 as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

Amaral, who initially led the inquiry into Madeleine's disappearance, was removed from the case in October 2007 after criticising UK police.

British detectives launched a fresh investigation into the youngster's disappearance in July this year and believe she could still be alive.

The Portuguese investigation into Madeleine's disappearance is officially closed.


The case, in which Amaral denies defamation, is expected to finish hearing evidence in November.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/oct/02/madeleine-mccann-father-portuguese-court-evidence-libel-case

Biased media manipulation at it's finest hour.
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Post by Verdi 25.10.18 15:08

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 Notwmaddieskidnapper

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Post by Verdi 01.11.18 11:41

McCanns' agony at 'body in fridge' slur Parents dismiss new police claim in Maddy mystery as 'hurtful'

September 29 2007 12:00 AM

THE parents of Madeleine McCann have called for an end to the "hurtful" smear campaign after sensational new claims that her mother hid her corpse in a fridge after accidentally killing her.

Tomorrow is the 150th day since Madeleine disappeared. Kate and Gerry McCann will attend a church service near their home in Rothley, Leceistershire, but there will be no special event to generate publicity.

It was claimed yesterday that police in Portugal now believe that Kate McCann killed Madeleine while putting her to bed at their holiday apartment in Praia da Luz between 7pm and 8.30pm on May 3 and then hid her corpse in a fridge, with the help of friends.

The respected Diario de Noticias newspaper said officers believed that she accidentally killed Madeleine while her husband was playing tennis.

Her body then "passed through various locations" before going into the boot of the car hired by her parents 25 days after she disappeared, it reported.

As a result, detectives want to inspect fridges at the Ocean Club complex where the McCanns were staying with a group of seven British adults.

A source close to the McCanns said: "That is total rubbish. Have you seen the size of the fridges in those apartments? Of course they did not stuff her in a fridge. Kate was not in the apartment alone with Maddy.

"They had both been playing tennis, then they put her to bed together and were then down for dinner (with their friends) by 8.20pm."

The report is the latest of a series of allegations in the Portuguese media credited to anonymous detectives from the Policia Judiciaria. There are concerns that the McCanns have become victims of "black propaganda" being put out by police to explain why they were made official suspects.

Clarence Mitchell, the McCanns' spokesman, said: "We do not know who is putting all this out in Portugal but for the family's sake it's time for it to stop. Every one of these nonsensical allegations causes real pain and hurt for both Gerry and Kate, who cannot help but be aware of them. It makes a most awful situation far, far worse, because they know it's not true.


"I am very grateful for the media support; it is immeasurable in terms of what has been done to help find Madeleine, but these reports are increasing the pain for Kate and Gerry.

"We just hope that everyone can see these ridiculous rumours for what they are. It is very hard on the couple because they are not allowed to talk about the investigation and cannot defend themselves."

Mr Mitchell said that the McCanns would attend church tomorrow. "It will be just another day without Madeleine," he said.

Ordeal
It was reported yesterday that the couple, both 39, may speak out about their ordeal in a television show with a celebrity interviewer.

The McCanns have previously turned down requests for interviews with Oprah Winfrey and Larry King but they are said to be considering a request from the veteran American broadcaster Barbara Walters for an interview to coincide with the launch of an stg£80,000 (€114,000) advertising campaign for the search for their daughter.

The couple are said to be furious that they cannot speak out because of Portuguese judicial secrecy laws. The law, however, prohibits them only from discussing evidence in the case.

The McCanns had used their campaign to find Madeleine as an opportunity to raise awareness about other missing children and to call for better alert systems.

It was announced yesterday that Portugal is to call for an EU-wide alert system for missing children. Portugal, which holds the rotating EU presidency, will ask member states at a meeting in Lisbon this week if they want to expand to all 27 countries a new French alert system involving a nationwide media campaign and messages in stations and on motorways.

Meanwhile, Gerry McCann yesterday threw his backing behind the move to create the Europe-wide alert system for missing children.

Portugal is reportedly pushing for such a system to be set up at a key meeting of European home affairs ministers next week.
Madeleine went missing from her parents' rented holiday flat on the Algarve on May 3.


Portuguese police faced criticism over the speed of their response to the disappearance including questions over how quickly it sealed borders and alerted ports and airports.

Images of Madeleine were circulated through the media by friends and family in the hours after Madeleine's disappearance.
Now Portugal is said to be backing the extension of a French alert system, which includes electronic roadside messages, across the EU's 27 countries.


In the UK, a similar county-wide scheme, including automatic media alerts, was pioneered in Surrey after the disappearance of local schoolgirl Milly Dowler.

Gerry McCann said: "If this is true, we would very much welcome it as a major step in the right direction.

"Kate and I have consistently campaigned to effect such changes throughout the European Union to help protect children everywhere.''

Mr McCann travelled to Washington DC earlier this year to meet the then US Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez to discuss measures in place there.

There, news of a missing child in Arkansas could be notified to police in California in less than two hours.

The McCanns' spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, said: "From his own experience during his recent trip to America, Gerry felt that the US is some distance ahead of Europe.

"Clearly a widening of effective systems to raise immediate awareness of missing children across the EU is exactly the sort of long-term change Gerry and Kate are working so hard to achieve.''

https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/mccanns-agony-at-body-in-fridge-slur-parents-dismiss-new-police-claim-in-maddy-mystery-as-hurtful-26321669.htm
....................

Now tell me Clarence Mitchell wasn't behind all the media reports, day in day out.  It suited their mutual purpose to have negative reportage running alongside positive reportage.

Who said social media is the evil force against a 'fair trial'?  That was nicely manufactured by the mighty force of team McCann commencing May 2007 up to the present day..

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Post by Verdi 01.11.18 20:58

McCann team tests car for traces of Madeleine

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 News-graphics-2007-_651552a

By Fiona Govan in Praia da Luz

8:50AM GMT 20 Nov 2007

The McCanns' legal team has carried out independent forensic tests on the car hired by the couple 25 days after Madeleine disappeared and found no trace of the missing girl, it has emerged.

Portuguese police made Kate and Gerry McCann arguidos - formal suspects - after allegedly finding "bodily fluids" belonging to Madeleine in the boot of the McCanns Renault Scenic hire car.

It has been reported that police believe that Madeleine's body had been transported in the rental car, weeks after she accidentally died in the holiday apartment, perhaps from an overdose of sedatives.

They are said to be awaiting the results of DNA tests from a laboratory in Birmingham to confirm their suspicions.

Last night it emerged that lawyers working for the couple had hired independent forensic scientists to examine the car, which had been kept in a garage of an Algarve holiday villa after they returned to the UK.

Brian Kennedy, the wealthy business man who is funding the McCann's own efforts to investigate their daughter's disappearance, confirmed the tests had taken place.

"We did our own tests on the hire car and found no traces of Madeleine," he said.

He said that the tests had been carried out by a team of independent Home Office accredited pathologists and were completely reliable.

The forensic team also examined hairs belonging to Madeleine's siblings, twins Sean and Amelie, 2, but found no trace of them ever having been given sedatives.

Madeleine, who was three years old at the time, went missing from her parents holiday apartment in Praia da Luz on May 3.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1569964/McCann-team-tests-car-for-traces-of-Madeleine.html

bubblegum

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Post by Verdi 02.11.18 1:12

Madeleine McCann's parents look to US sniffer dog case

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 News-graphics-2007-_645578a

By Caroline Gammell in Praia da Luz

12:01AM BST 17 Sep 2007

[For those who still believe Madeleine McCann's disappearance was reported by the Telegraph at midnight on 3rd/4th May 2007, please not the time]

Kate and Gerry McCann's legal team has contacted American lawyers over a case where key sniffer dog evidence was thrown out of court in the hope that it may help them fight any charges that they were involved in the killing of their daughter.

The couple fear that Portuguese police will rely on the behaviour of cadaver dogs who allegedly detected "the smell of death" on Mrs McCann's clothes.

Detectives in the Algarve are understood to be working on the theory that Mrs McCann accidentally killed four-year-old Madeleine and her husband helped her get rid of the body. The couple have dismissed this as "ludicrous".

The "smell of death" was not only allegedly detected on Mrs McCann's clothes but in the family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz and the Renault Scenic car hired 25 days after Madeleine disappeared, Portuguese sources claimed. A source close to the McCanns' solicitors said the smell on Mrs McCann could be explained by being in contact with corpses while working as a GP.

The couple, from Rothley, Leics, are already preparing their defence in case they are charged with their daughter's death.

Their UK lawyers consulted the legal team of Eugene Zapata, 68, who is accused of murdering his estranged wife Jeanette in 1976.

He was charged with murder last year after dogs indicated that they sniffed human remains in the basement of the former family home in Madison, Wisconsin.

But a judge ruled last month that the evidence was no more reliable than "the flip of a coin" and could not be put before a jury.

"The court papers, giving the legal submissions, are on their way to the McCann team for consideration," said the source close to the McCanns' solicitors.

"At the moment there is no formal allegation against which the McCann team can work.

"But given that we understand the central plank of what the police are alleging involves sniffer dogs, this is important and relevant, and will be raised with the police and brought to the judge's attention."

Senior Portuguese police sources admitted at the weekend that there was "nothing concrete" with which to charge the couple.

In the last 10 days they have been declared formal suspects, accused of fleeing Portugal and endured a number of slurs about their parenting but they began to fight back by launching a newspaper and poster campaign focused in Spain and Portugal to highlight Madeleine's disappearance.

The couple were also boosted by the public backing of Sir Richard Branson, the Virgin boss, who contributed £100,000 to kick start a fund to pay for their legal team.

He has taken a personal interest in the investigation and has spoken at length to Mr and Mrs McCann.

His spokesman said: "When the McCanns said under no circumstances would they touch the find-Madeleine fund and mentioned they would sell their house, he felt he had to do something."

The McCanns have appointed top lawyers in Portugal and Britain to clear "the cloud of suspicion" enveloping them.

A source close to them said: "Any so-called evidence can be explained. There are wholly innocent reasons for everything that the police may have found which gives them cause for suspicion."

In an unprecedented move, the investigating judge, Pedro Daniel dos Anjos Frias, is understood to want to speak publicly about the case.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1563381/Madeleine-McCanns-parents-look-to-US-sniffer-dog-case.html

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Post by Verdi 02.11.18 14:56

It's not silence the McCanns want, it's front-page news

Mary Riddell



The media are not exploiting the Maddie story. Rather, it is her parents who are exploiting the media. And they are right to do so


Sun 20 May 2007


Slowly, the mood is changing in Praia da Luz. A disgruntled Portuguese cafe owner asks my colleague: 'Why don't you just go home?' And soon, if nothing happens, this man will leave, along with the rest of the British media. By then, the poster face of Madeleine McCann may be fading and peeling from shop doorways. This is the moment her parents dread.

The McCanns are a family in need. They do not require the state support that this definition normally implies. Their lifeline is the publicity they see as vital if they are to see their missing daughter again. This neediness sits strangely with the widespread cry that Gerry and Kate McCann are the victims of those exploiting the grief of strangers. On the contrary, the McCanns long to have their sorrow ransacked and their solitude violated. Exposure, they think, is the last best hope they have.

The story of Madeleine McCann has no parallel. Her image is already part of the mental mural of modern Britain, along with Damilola Taylor skipping between bollards and James Bulger walking from a shopping mall, holding a big boy's hand. But, in the two weeks since Madeleine disappeared from her bed, the clamour has reflected something new.

David Beckham and other footballers plead for her release. MPs and cricketers wear yellow ribbons, text messages exhort grievers to light candles and 25 million people visited her mother's website in one day. As Somalia and Darfur starve, the fund for Madeleine attracts more givers than a tsunami appeal. Some think this outpouring mawkish and disproportionate; others see it as the proof of goodness.

Either way, it is not spontaneous. In the Algarve, the family and their advisers are running the slickest of PR operations. Each walk, church visit or jog on the beach is a photo-opportunity. Commentators may linger on their grief, but the McCanns allow themselves no such luxury. Their daughter's beauty and their faith, middle-class status, perfect family image and their heedless twins are their product range in a marketing campaign fuelled by the hard-headedness of desperation.

This fusion of emotion and calculation has made some people uneasy. The media, increasingly, are being accused of an orgy of excess. It is true that the demonisation of the two uncharged men at the centre of the investigation has been repugnant, but critics mostly seem less worried by witch-hunts than by the supposed prurience of those whipping up a mob frenzy.

That, though, is not what is happening. People have, in the main, been quietly sympathetic. They might send a cheque or talk about Madeleine but, outside her home village in Leicestershire, any show of emotion is subdued. I have not seen anyone wearing a yellow ribbon in my part of north London. Barring the celebrity-averse Gordon Brown, said to have shed a tear as he held the hand of Madeleine's aunt, there has been little conspicuous emotion among the corporate donors, the famous sympathisers and the millions responding to the McCann family's 'please help' emails.

This story, one of the most powerful narratives of this century, is not another parable of the emotional incontinence of the British masses. Most of the participants would never have stooped to buy carnations for Diana or shackle teddy bears to railings. It is not about voracious media or velvety compassion or the emotional striptease of the therapy age.

It does, though, have the ugly elements that have marked myths of the missing since the underworld Daimones lured the young and beautiful to their beds. They have been replaced by the paedophiles and assorted predators whose shadow haunts parents. British children might be the safest in the world, and the most overprotected, but they are perceived as targets of social kleptomania. In an age obsessed by stolen childhood, it is unsurprising that a stolen child has become the story overshadowing the end of a political era.

There are some old reasons why this one narrative has bubbled through a crust of other loss and sorrow. From the worship of Dionysius to the Mexican wave, mass events have either rallied or repulsed humanity, depending on your taste. In a society routinely branded as atomised, participation is now tailored to Big Brotherdom. To some, this saga has all the tackiness of reality television. Fed up of Wife Swap? Tune into Child Snatch, updated round the clock. Send money or a text. Be a part of someone else's drama and the first live audience in the national pilot show for interactive grief. Welcome to Celebrity Sorrow Club

I don't believe, though, that ordinary people are so cynical. They know, from their own families, that almost no child reaches adulthood without some brush with death and they simply hope that this one may be spared. Shared hope and fear and experience are the most visceral social bonds, as ancient and deep-rooted as love.

They are the sinews of a narrative that has united the candle-lighters, the texters and the givers in a story whose fallout has certainly not been all good. There is, somewhere in the mix, a whiff of emotional coercion equating yellow ribbon refuseniks with stoniness of heart. There has been more than a whiff of blame and exploitation, too, and not only by the chancers setting up fake websites. One pro-life organisation dedicated to highlighting 'the evils of abortion and contraception' has given over its entire online news coverage to Madeleine.

But those who shudder at media excess are really objecting to the way hope has been harnessed. Their complaints are often a polite, and rather hypocritical, device for not criticising the McCann family, whose plight is supposedly being exploited by a vulgar nation leeching off their quiet dignity. Nothing could be further from the truth.

This is not another plague of the grief virus to which Britain is spasmodically prone or a story of hysteria. It is the first hybrid of news management and the extremity of personal sorrow. The Madeleine message is part of an orchestrated campaign of clamour, drama and purpose: anything to defer the awful reality of silence.

The fund, the celebrity endorsement and the self-exposure are one family's attempt to create, in their missing daughter's name, a search machine and a legend that will endure long after the circus finally leaves town.

The McCanns have used every available stratagem in the post-privacy, celebrity-driven, commercialised world of 24/7 news. They are selling a modern fairytale, dark and beguiling, and we are buying, believing that a child's life may still hang on this transaction. The hunt for Madeleine McCann is pitched at the crossroads between the Brothers Grimm and Facebook and anchored in the arcane truth that parents will fight by any means available to secure a child's survival. Good luck to them.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2007/may/20/comment.pressandpublishing
....................

The Guardian do likea touch of the melodrama don't it?  This article is dated 20th May 2007, less than three weeks after Madeleine McCann's alleged disappearance - it's not what you know but who you know?


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Slowly, the mood is changing in Praia da Luz. A disgruntled Portuguese cafe owner asks my colleague: 'Why don't you just go home?' And soon, if nothing happens, this man will leave, along with the rest of the British media. By then, the poster face of Madeleine McCann may be fading and peeling from shop doorways. This is the moment her parents dread.
The McCanns are a family in need. They do not require the state support that this definition normally implies. Their lifeline is the publicity they see as vital if they are to see their missing daughter again. This neediness sits strangely with the widespread cry that Gerry and Kate McCann are the victims of those exploiting the grief of strangers. On the contrary, the McCanns long to have their sorrow ransacked and their solitude violated. Exposure, they think, is the last best hope they have.

____________________
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Post by Verdi 03.11.18 0:13

'I was deceived' says the Portuguese priest who comforted Gerry and Kate McCann

18th October 2007

The Portuguese priest who comforted Gerry and Kate McCann in the days after Madeleine vanished last night said he had been deceived, it has emerged.

According to reports, Father Jose Manuel Pacheco claimed he had done nothing wrong and was simply "supporting two lost souls."

But, bizarrely, he also appeared to say he had been the victim of some form of deception

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 MccannAP110807_468x311

It has also emerged Father Pacheco was apparently called in to see his superior, Algarve Bishop Manuel Quintas and warned about his behaviour.

In the days after Madeleine vanished on May 3, the McCanns, both 39 and devout Catholics, frequently sought refuge at the priest's church.

They became so close to Father Pacheco, he gave them the keys to the tiny building so they could go in to pray whenever they liked.

However, his friendship with the couple appeared to spectacularly backfire after police became convinced Kate had told him she had killed her daughter during confession.

But he has vowed to take whatever she had said to the grave, despite being quizzed by detectives.

Father Pacheco appeared to virtually vanish from the public eye in the weeks after Gerry and Kate were made arguidos - or official suspects.

The pair left Portugal without saying goodbye and handed the church keys to another clergyman.

Last week, police moved in to search the churchyard and there has been some suggestion that they may consider digging for Madeleine's body at the location.

Father Pacheco, runs two churches and teaches at three local schools, yesterday broke his silence.

According to the Daily Express, he admitted he had become too close to the couple, still official suspects in the disappearance of their daughter.

"I was deceived," he said.

"I was just doing my job supporting lost souls. I would do that with any family who were in their situation. I didn't do anything wrong.

Father Pacheco, 46, said he had felt compelled to help Kate and Gerry because of their "inconsolable grief".

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-488262/I-deceived-says-Portuguese-priest-comforted-Gerry-Kate-McCann.html


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Post by Verdi 03.11.18 0:41

Madeleine's parents invited to Vatican for private meeting with Pope

Thair Shaikh: 29th May 2007

The parents of missing four-year-old Madeleine McCann have been invited to the Vatican to meet the Pope tomorrow, a spokesman for the family said.

Kate and Gerry McCann will have a private meeting with Pope Benedict XVI tomorrow morning at the end of a general audience meeting in the Vatican.

The couple will fly to Rome this afternoon from Faro on a 12-seater Gulfstream jet owned by the businessman Sir Philip Green. The meeting will be particularly significant for the couple because they have drawn strength from their Catholic faith since their daughter disappeared on May 3 and have attended church regularly. Last week they visited the Fatima shrine, one of the holiest in the Catholic world.

Clarence Mitchell, a spokesman for the McCann family, said both parents were delighted that "this important spiritual support had been afforded to them", and that Mrs McCann would give the Pope a photograph of Madeleine.

He added that although they were grateful of Sir Philip's offer to let them use his private jet, they would only use it on this one occasion.

Yesterday the McCann family visited a 75 sq metre (800 sq ft) inflatable poster of Madeleine that will be taken around the Algarve in an attempt to publicise her plight further. The poster, which highlights a £1.5m reward being offered through the News of the World, was paid for by Chris Lennox and Les Harley, two advertising professionals from Glasgow, who drove it 2,200 miles from Scotland to Praia da Luz.In a statement read out near the poster, the McCanns said they were amazed by the support they has received. "We have thanked everyone on several occasions but, you know, some people are just going to absolutely extraordinary lengths to help us," the statement said.

"We'd like to again thank the thousands, if not millions, of people who are doing little things in their own way - either making donations to the fund, distributing posters, taking posters on holiday - anything that people are doing to raise the awareness of Madeleine's disappearance."

The couple also released two short film clips of their daughter yesterday, taken by a family friend on their mobile phone on April 28. They show Madeleine clambering up the steps to the aircraft at East Midlands airport and later sitting on a shuttle bus at Faro airport. Mr McCann said his daughter had been so excited about the holiday that she had barely complained when she tripped and grazed her shin.

"She was dead excited about going away with the rest of the kids, it was her first time to Portugal," he said.

Meanwhile, Portuguese police said they have received hundreds of calls after they released a description of a man seen near the McCanns's holiday flat at about the time Madeleine is thought to have gone missing. He is described as white, 5ft 10in, medium build with short hair.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2007/may/29/ukcrime.catholicism
....................

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 1f4e2 The McCanns were not invited to the Vatican, at least not as suggested by ^^^ - nor did they have a private audience with the pontiff.

They were there by private arrangement between their spindoctor Clarence Mitchell and the disgraced Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, RIH , for a front row seat when the supreme pontiff was pontifficating with his customary laying on of hands. Mitchell was nigh on tripping over his own drool trying to get particular attention for his friends/clients..

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 Mitchellpope8

Nobody but nobody would put their neck on the block if they weren't 100% secure.

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Post by Verdi 03.11.18 12:02

Pay careful attention to this report, in particular note the date it was published.  Just after Gerry McCann's first trip to the UK following Madeleine's disappearance and just before the Irish witness came forward with tales of sighting a possible abductor..

MADDY COPS 'FAILED BASICS'


POLICE probing the kidnap of Madeleine McCann made basic errors, a child protection expert said yesterday.

Martin Fricker:  24th May 2007

POLICE probing the kidnap of Madeleine McCann made basic errors, a child protection expert said yesterday.

Accusing them of failing to complete the fundamental "building blocks", former detective Mark Williams-Thomas said: "It was the worst preserved crime scene I've ever seen."

Mr Williams-Thomas hit out as it emerged that there is NO evidence to link sole suspect Robert Murat with the disappearance three weeks ago of Madeleine, four.

The expert visited the kidnap scene in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz in the early stages of the inquiry.

Mr Williams-Thomas said local detectives failed to cordon off the wider crime scene.

In doing so, they blew the "best possible chance" of collecting vital evidence.

He said: "The first 24 hours are absolutely vital. This major window of opportunity was lost because of failings."

That police had not yet questioned all potential witnesses, including those staying nearby, was "inexcusable", he said.
The case against Murat, 33, looks on the verge of collapse. After DNA tests, a police source said: "There's not the slightest proof he was involved.


"We've examined hair, sweat residue and clothing. Nothing links him."

Genetic profiles were taken from evidence at the McCanns' holiday apartment.

None matches the DNA of Briton Murat or his Russian business associate Sergey Malinka, 22, who has been grilled. Amazingly, police have not taken a sample of Madeleine's DNA, even though it could easily be obtained from a toothbrush or hairbrush.

Instead, they created a DNA profile from parents Kate and Gerry McCann, both 38, of Rothley, Leics.

There will be further DNA tests. The National Institute of Legal Medicine, said: "We can only draw conclusions once analyses are completed."

Officers yesterday questioned Murat's lover, German-born Michaela Walczuch, for a second time.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/maddy-cops-failed-basics-477383

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Post by Verdi 03.11.18 20:19

Master of media circus for Madeleine McCann

Clarence Mitchell is not backward about coming forward for Gerry and Kate McCann.

24th April 2008

The first anniversary of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann will be marked next week with a two-hour television documentary which is the highlight of a carefully stage-managed publicity offensive.

The fly-on-the wall documentary on ITV1 of Gerry and Kate McCann has been organised by Clarence Mitchell, their official spokesman. The Portuguese press first referred to him as the "man in the shadows" when he took the job full-time in Praia da Luz in September.

The newspapers were reporting the (as usual) private views of the Portuguese police that Mitchell, 47, had been sent in by Gordon Brown, no less – when he was Chancellor – to spy on the investigation, which had been portrayed in Britain as amateur and cack-handed.

But the Portuguese media were wrong on both counts. Mitchell would have had at best only a nodding acquaintance with junior ministers, let alone Mr Brown. As director of media monitoring at the Central Office of Information, he was a back room boy but has never been in the shadows of the police operation.

The former BBC television reporter has loved being centre stage before the cameras in an investigation that has transfixed the world's media. "He is on the TV much more than he ever was when he worked for the BBC," said one former colleague.

So much so that photographers regularly have to shout at Mitchell to get out of the way when they are taking pictures of the McCanns. He remains at his fixed point by their shoulder even during photo-shoots, bucking the trend of media minders who avoid being photographed at all costs.

Mitchell has become such a familiar figure in his open-necked pink shirts that he is recognised in the street and is stopped so often on the forecourts of petrol stations that he now jokes it is because he has forgotten to pay his bill.

After almost 30 years as a journalist, he knows what makes a story and has been extraordinarily successful in maintaining a strong interest in Madeleine.

When interest has faltered he has invariably constructed a story or recruited a big name – even the American First Lady, Laura Bush, is on-side – to a campaign driven by parents who accepted early on that the media was a necessary partner.

Nevertheless, the documentary next Wednesday has provoked controversy because ITV1 has scheduled it against the BBC's The Apprentice as part of its ratings war.

The move has led to the accusation that Mitchell has allowed the parents to be exploited by a commercial broadcaster. The fact that Mentorn, the production company making the programme, has given £10,000 to the Find Madeleine fund has not diminished the fuss: the money will be more than recouped from syndication.

ITV1, with the help of Mitchell, has kept other media organisations from the McCanns during the five weeks of the access deal with Mentorn. The company has secured unseen footage of Mrs McCann, 40, her husband, 39, and their three-year-old twins behind the door of their home in Rothley, Leics.

It includes Mrs McCann breaking down in tears as she recalls the night Madeleine went missing. But Mitchell will be undeterred by the barbs, believing the two-hour documentary the best way to ensure that the search for Madeleine goes global again. This is what he is paid to do.

He always wanted to be a journalist and after O-levels at Friern Barnet School, Finchley, where he was head boy, he joined the Barnet & Potters Bar Times and then a BBC training scheme.

In a varied career he covered the Soham murders and, for two years from 2003, the Iraq war.

He was also on the royal beat when he was known – not very imaginatively – as "Clarence House". But it was as a presenter on various BBC news programmes that he hoped to make his career after years on the road. His spell doing hourly bulletins on News 24 is best remembered for him sleeping through a 3am slot, which had to be filled by a somewhat dishevelled producer. He became close to the McCanns after being sent twice by the Foreign Office to look after them when there were 40 camera crews outside their Portuguese apartment.

As a father of three children, aged two to 11, he has gone through the same agonies as many other parents who feared it could have happened to them. His £70,000 salary, equivalent to what he earned in the Civil Service, is being paid by the double-glazing magnate Brian Kennedy, who has bankrolled much of the McCann campaign.

Surrendering his Civil Service pension will be compensated by the future benefits of his role in helping to make Madeleine's the most heavily reported missing-person case in modern history. Offers are coming in for book, broadcast, and lecture circuit opportunities when he returns to "ordinary life" – and even Mohamed Fayed is rumoured to be interested in hiring him.

Mitchell divides his time between his home in Bath, London, and Rothley and speaks to the McCanns every day. They are grateful to him for raising the profile of the search across Europe and North Africa, through visits to Morocco, Italy, Spain and Germany. But the revelation that they were flying in a private jet was a bear trap that Mitchell should have spotted, and the couple flew home from a trip to Portugal on easyJet.

Mitchell was, as usual, only a few feet away from the couple when they met the Pope in St Peter's Square. He was so overcome he reached out to grasp the papal hand and was rewarded with a blessing and a set of rosary beads from one of the priests in the Pontiff's retinue.

While calm in public, he has often blown up behind the scenes at reporters and is occasionally guilty of overdoing briefings.

In the last few weeks his public approach has changed, bluntly blaming the Portugese police for leaking statements from Mr and Mrs McCann that revealed Madeleine was left crying the night before she vanished.

Mitchell moved from the shadows to being branded a "manipulative liar" by the police and the row ensured once more that the McCanns returned to front pages across Europe. It was a job well done by the man at the centre of the story in his own right.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1902515/Master-of-media-circus-for-Madeleine-McCann.html

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Post by Verdi 05.11.18 12:02

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 Wwwgon10

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 9k=

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Post by Verdi 05.11.18 12:21

I'm guessing the legal action against Gonçalo Amaral instigated by team McCann, was a very elaborate scheme to divert attention from the more damning PJ files, realeased into the public domain during the same period.  A veiled attempt to discredit the PJ investigation by discrediting the case coordinator.

think 


How the discrediting of former top cop helps shut down damning Madeleine McCann theories


By Mark Saunokonoko
2:02pm May 3, 2017


Crusading hero to many and vindictive villain to others, the figure of Goncalo Amaral is almost as much a part of the Madeleine McCann story as her parents, Kate and Gerry.

Amaral was the original supervising detective in the Maddie McCann case, an unsolved mystery which has captivated the world since Portuguese police were called at 10.41pm on May 3, 2007.

That first phone call, made some 41 minutes after Kate McCann claimed to have discovered Maddie was missing, sparked a 15-month police investigation that came under the most extraordinary media and political pressures.

Five months into the investigation, and following the naming of Kate and Gerry as suspects in the disappearance of their four-year-old daughter, Amaral found himself removed from the case.

However, Amaral sensationally reappeared just days after the Portuguese police investigation was eventually shelved in July 2008, with an explosive book that was hugely damaging to the McCanns.

His 22-chapter account, titled Truth of the Lie, concluded Maddie had probably died in some kind of accident inside holiday apartment 5A, that an abduction was staged and her tiny body had been disposed of by Kate and Gerry.

The McCanns launched an expensive and protracted legal battle, using money from the millions of dollars donated to the Find Madeleine Fund, to have Amaral's personal account of the investigation banned.

Initially the McCanns succeeded, before a 2016 court tossed that decision out and ruled that the injunction had violated Amaral's freedom of expression.


Throughout the investigation, and continuing to the present day, Amaral, now aged 57, has been continuously and methodically mauled by the British tabloids and to a lesser extent various UK broadsheets.

Amaral's supporters believe the ongoing assassination of his character and policing methods helps shape the perception that his theories must be wild and fanciful.

A man named Clarence Mitchell, a former British government media mastermind, has been the key strategist in the McCann's meticulous public relations campaign for each of the 10 years since Maddie vanished.

Over the past week, as the milestone tenth anniversary of Madeleine's approached, maneuverings to discredit Amaral were once again evident in the pages of the powerful and wide-reaching UK red tops.


Two high profile stories which ran this week in The Sun and The Mirror both painted Amaral as a kind of crackpot.

The first attributed quotes to Amaral about Maddie being secretly placed inside a coffin with a dead body which was later cremated; the second pushed Amaral's supposed belief that British spy agency MI5 had helped hide Maddie's body.

Amaral, in both instances, was selectively edited and his comments were twisted out of context.

The former cop has previously spoken about the cremated coffin and related police information about three figures seen entering a church in Praia da Luz carrying a bag.

In a 2016 interview on CMTV, he confirmed the McCanns were given keys to the local church, close to where the family was staying. Inside there was a coffin of an adult woman that was later incinerated.

During the TV appearance Amaral explained that all possible angles of a missing persons case should be explored by detectives.
"No one is saying that the parents did that [put Madeleine's body in the coffin]," he said.

The startling claim that spooks from MI5 helped hide Madeleine's body is another disturbing manipulation of the truth.


The facts are in the days following Maddie's disappearance the UK government made the remarkably unusual step of becoming closely involved in another sovereign nation's police investigation.

British police were sent to Portugal to assist, while the British ambassador to Portugal and other officials also arrived in Praia Da Luz within 48 hours of Madeleine being reported missing.


A former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan and ex Foreign Office civil servant, Craig Murray, publicly questioned "the exceptional treatment from British authorities" for the McCanns.

"British diplomatic staff were under direct instruction to support the McCanns far beyond the usual and to put pressure on the Portuguese authorities over the case," Murray wrote in an April, 2016 blog post.

"I have direct information that more than one of those diplomatic staff found the McCanns less than convincing and their stories inconsistent.

"Embassy staff were perturbed to be ordered that British authorities were to be present at every contact between the McCanns and Portuguese police."


There were criticisms that the Policia Judiciaria were leaking rumours and unsubstantiated facts of the case to Portuguese journalists, while starving the hungry British press corp.

Ian Woods, a Sky News reporter on the ground in Praia Da Luz, explained how that dynamic divided the British and Portuguese journalists, creating an 'us' and 'them' agenda.

"For the first few weeks or months the British media were largely pro-McCann and the Portuguese media seemed largely anti-McCann," Woods wrote in a [url=https://bdigital.ufp.pt/bitstream/10284/1465/2/DM_ JoanaSantos.pdf]2009 study[/url] examining media coverage of the case.

As the days ticked over into weeks, and with no sign of Maddie's return, the British press began to attack the way the investigation was handled.

On reflection, Amaral has admitted the Portuguese investigation, inevitably, made mistakes.

One of his biggest regrets, he said, was not immediately putting surveillance traces on Kate and Gerry's phones.

Amaral also lamented the failure of police to immediately obtain the clothes Maddie had worn at the resort crèche on the day she disappeared.

The McCanns have not ruled out trying to again ban The Truth of the Lie by taking the legal fight with Amaral all the way to the European Court of Human Rights.

Meanwhile, rumours have circulated that Amaral is planning a second book.

Ten years on, Madeleine Beth McCann remains missing.

https://www.9news.com.au/world/2017/05/03/14/02/how-discrediting-former-top-cop-helps-shut-down-damning-madeleine-mccann-theories

Tch tch tch Mr Saunokonko bignono I thought you were an advocate of truth, not a propagator of misinformation.

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Post by Verdi 05.11.18 14:42


Kate forced political pressure, 26 July 2008

[color:da6e=000000] Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 CdM260708

Kate forced political pressure Correio da Manhã 

 

Revelations – Maddie's mother's notes prove Gonçalo Amaral right

 

26 July 2008

Thanks to 'astro' for translation

 

The English prime minister called the couple directly and the British diplomacy took care of the travelling

 

"To increase the political pressure". The phrase, by Kate McCann, written among the notes that were found in her house and which the Polícia Judiciária (PJ) had apprehended, is clear about the manner in which Maddie's parents intended to manage their daughter's disappearance, bringing it into the press' first pages and turning it into a case with political outlines.

On the morning of the 23rd of May 2007 (twenty days after Maddie's disappearance), before they left for the Sanctuary of Fátima, Kate and Gerry left Gordon Brown a message. Maddie's mother describes it as a form of "raising the political pressure" and reveals that the present Prime Minister – at that date, he was not in functions but had already been confirmed as Tony Blair's successor – answered her only three hours later. He spoke with Gerry, was "very sympathetic and gave strength", tells Kate, who describes the visit to the catholic sanctuary as overwhelming, potent and emotional.

On the same day in the afternoon, Gordon Brown called Maddie's parents again. Kate's notebooks do not report the conversation but one is able to understand that the purpose was to create political pressure, forcing the PJ to act swiftly.

 

Today, at more than a year's distance from the child's disappearance and after the case has been archived, Kate's notes expose the pressures that were reported by the former coordinator of the case, Gonçalo Amaral, who from the moment when he was removed from the investigation, realised that the process would not produce an accusation.

With an investigation that was initially inclined towards the abduction theory, partly forced by the McCanns, the evidence of the pressures by the couple also explains the British press' posture in the coverage of the case, mainly from the moment when Madeleine's parents went from victims to suspects and arguidos. With the British prime minister himself supporting the McCanns, through direct and frequent phone calls that are revealed by Kate, it became almost impossible for the English government to help an investigation that had indicated the parents as guilty.

Apart from the contacts with Gordon Brown, Kate's notebooks reveal other important allies. From the hiring of Clarence Mitchell, who at that point in time worked for the government, as an assistant, until the conversations with the wife of Tony Blair, the former British Prime Minister.

Mitchell actually had a pivotal role in the propaganda machine that was built by the McCanns within a few days, and which counted on the great help from the British diplomacy in all the trips that were carried out by Kate and Gerry.

 

The first and most media-exposed [trip] – to Rome, to be received by Pope Benedict XVI – was suggested by the assistant, on the 27th of May, after speaking to Francis Campbell, the British ambassador at the Vatican. "Rome is already preparing itself", Kate wrote, anticipating that visit as what would become the "main" news on that day. One day later, the visit and the audience with the Pope were already confirmed, with a program that was prepared in a detailed manner.

On the 30th of May, after leaving the British consulate in Rome, Kate and Gerry, accompanied by the ambassador, made a strategic stop "for the photographers to catch an image looking at the Basilica", and continued towards the Vatican, where they spent a few minutes with Benedict XVI. A moment that was described as very emotional, positive and important, and that summoned "loads of" journalists and photographers, which is definitely a concern that is always present with the couple.

 

After Rome, Madrid, Berlin and Morocco followed, trips with the purpose of publicising Madeleine's face and which always relied on passages through consulates or receptions by British ambassadors and political representatives of the corresponding countries.

According to Kate's notes, the days started or ended with meetings, phone calls and emails. Cherie Blair, the wife of Tony Blair, Gordon Brown's predecessor, was one of Kate's contacts, as demonstrated by the reports of the 17th of July. Before Kate gives Sky News an interview, she speaks with Cherie, who agrees to make a 20 second videoclip about Maddie for the English channel. On that same day, Blair himself pledges assistance and makes himself available for whatever is needed.

Kate's notes:

"Left a message for Gordon Brown to call us in order to increase the political pressure" – Kate McCann, 23rd of May

"Gordon Brown called and spoke with Gerry – very sympathetic and gave strength. Somewhat emotive feeling afterwards" – Kate McCann, 23rd of May

"Clarence spoke to us about a possible visit to the Vatican. Rome is already preparing itself. Francis Campbell was spoken to" – Kate McCann, 27th of May
……………………….

The ambassador's solidarity

 

On the 4th [of May], only hours after the alert of Madeleine's disappearance was given, Kate wrote in her notes that the English ambassador, John Buck, had been in the apartment offering them his solidarity. She also noted the presence of two employees from the consulate and stressed the strong presence of the media on location. "There is news appearing in the United Kingdom", Maddie's mother remembered, also noting the "worrying" and "boring" presence of Yvone, the English social security technician who tried to understand whether there was anything in the family's life that might explain the child's absence.

It should be referred that on that very same day, the ambassador met with senior officials from the PJ to understand the outlines of the case.


…………………………..

The news

Abduction theory – On the first days after Maddie's disappearance, on the 3rd of May 2007, the abduction theory was the only one that was mentioned in the news. "Give back our Madeleine", the parents appealed, not admitting any other possibility.

Visit to Fátima – Twenty days after Maddie's disappearance, the McCann couple went to pray at the Sanctuary of Fátima. But before that, they called Gordon Brown in order to increase the political pressure.

Brown's pressure – Only five days after the McCanns' contact with the British prime minister, Gordon Brown's pressures on Portugal because of the Maddie case were already known.

McCanns at the Vatican - The trip to the Vatican and the audience with Pope Benedict XVI were suggested by advisor Clarence Mitchell, who mobilised British diplomacy in order to take the McCanns to Rome.


[Acknowledgement pamalam at gerrymccannsblog.com]

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Post by Verdi 05.11.18 14:53

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 NewsOfWorld

NEWS OF THE WORLD SUNDAY 14 SEPT 2008


For the first time, the heartbreaking truth that destroys the lies of the Portuguese police

Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 NOTW-mccann_

TODAY we reveal the secret diary of agonised mum Kate McCann' penned over months as she and husband Gerry struggled to deal with their daughter Madeleine's abduction.



Her words destroy the litany of lies told by Portuguese cops to paint them as cold and calculating. Kate wrote: 'I can't bear being without Madeleine. It's like torture' a slow painful death.'



  • FOR months the Portuguese police leaked carefully selected extracts from Kate McCann's secret diary, chosen to deliberately paint her and husband Gerry as the ice couple' cold, dispassionate and emotionless in the face of three-year-old Madeleine's abduction.
  • Now, for the first time, the News of the World can fill in the blanks and nail those lies. The 135-page journal covering April 28, 2007 to Tuesday, July 31, was passed to us by a reporter in Portugal appalled by the sickening smear campaign against the McCann's.
  • Kate's log of the dark days after Madeleine vanished from their holiday flat reveals the true picture of the tortured woman behind the calm, brave face she had to portray in public, as initial disbelief and numbness gave way to desperation and rage. Often she includes touching messages of love to her missing daughter. It confirms the strength Kate drew from her devout Catholic faith' and frankly admits the doubts the trauma forced her to face.


Media Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY - Page 20 NOTW-14-09-08Kate_McCann

https://jillhavern.forumotion.net/t15518-kate-mccann-s-diary#390594

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