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Post by Verdi on 10.08.20 1:22



Service Information 2007.11.14

To: Coordinator of the Criminal Investigation
From: Joao Carlos, Inspector

Concerning the investigation of the disappearance of the British minor, Madeleine McCann, I present you Sir with the following:

On the 19th of October, we were contacted by the Commissary General, located in Madrid, by the Chief of the Kidnapping Unit, Alberto Carbas, who passed to us the information that the McCann family had contracted a Spanish company known as 'METODO 3', composed of Spanish private detectives. This business, or in other words, the costs of the activities of this business were being covered by a Scottish multi-millionaire whose name is BRIAN KENNEDY and whose objective was to locate the British minor.

With this information, we were asked if we were available and interested in meeting with a representative of this Spanish business, and also with the Commissary General and Chief of the Kidnapping Unit of the Police of our neighbouring country, whose operation is in Madrid.

The meeting had as its objective to receive on behalf of the private detectives, from that moment and for their own wishes, relevant information with the aim to ascertain the truth, and to state that they would not interfere in police work, and at most they would serve as a complement to some useful information. They firmly state that they are not working directly for the McCann family, but for Brian Kennedy and that their sole purpose is to locate the missing child, or to gather the inescapable truth of what happened.
They did not ask for any information regarding the investigation, nor was any offered to them, for obvious reasons as this is found incorporated in the Portuguese penal process.

On the 13th of the current year, in the presence of the signatory and inspectors Paulo Ferreira and Ricardo Paiva, a meeting was held, in this department, with Brian Kennedy, the director of the detective company, Francisco Marco and an advisor of this same company, Antonio Jimenez, ex-chief of the Kidnapping Unit of Catalan. From the beginning, Brian Kennedy was questioned, and ascertained that the meeting only had this scope--of transmitting that his objective in all of this was purely charitable in that he is interested [in helping to stop] the bad treatment of minors and in missing children. He affirmed that he only was interested in discovering the truth and nothing more even if the McCann family, the friends, or any other person is found to be involved in the disappearance.

During the course of this meeting, the director of METODO 3 gave us a small book (attached), with information relative to the disappearance of the minor. This information, as we were told, was received via telephone and that they had already opened a line in Spain, specifically to receive and deal with information.

In this book, written in Spanish, we can analyse three pieces of information:

1. In the first case, we observed that there was report of facts which occurred in August/September of 2006, and which appears to us somewhat extemporaneous, as it cannot now be related to the material under investigation.
2. In the second point, we should remember that the computers of Sergey Malinka were searched and that nothing of suspicion was found there or related to paedophilia.
3. In that which concerns the third point, we are currently carrying out diligences with the intent to confirm or disprove the related information.

With nothing more to report.
Joao Carlos, Inspector

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Post by Verdi on 10.08.20 1:28

Who Are Brian And Patrick Kennedy, And How Are They Involved In The Madeleine McCann Case?

Brian Kennedy, a wealthy Scottish businessman, bankrolled several private investigations to help find the missing 3-year-old girl. How did he and his son Patrick become involved in the case?

By Eric Shorey - 18th March 2019

Months after their daughter Madeleine’s 2007 disappearance in Portugal, Kate and Gerry McCann were reeling. Not only had Portuguese authorities turned up nothing in the search for their 3-year-old girl, but they themselves had been identified as suspects in the case, a development that propelled the tabloid media in Portugal and the U.K. into a whirlwind of speculation.

Into that bleak setting stepped Brian Kennedy, a wealthy Scottish businessman who offered the McCanns financial support to not only provide them legal protection, but also jumpstart an investigation that, with police in Portugal primarily focused on the couple, had been growing stagnant.  

Gerry and Kate had taken Madeleine and their 2-year-old twins to the vacation town of Praia De Luz. They were there with other friends and their respective children. On the night of May 3, the adults went to dinner at a restaurant a short walk from their rented apartments, with one of them getting up to check on the children every 20 or 30 minutes. Partway through the meal, Kate returned to the apartment — but Madeleine was gone. Thus kicked off an investigation that still continues more than a decade later.

It would only be a couple of months before some in the media began questioning whether Kate or Gerry were themselves involved. Eventually, Portuguese authorities began to share their own suspicions with the press, adding fuel to the fire.

Kennedy was one of many keeping tabs on the case and didn't like how the McCanns had become focal point.

"I was following the story like everyone else. I saw that the media and the world had turned against these people. I was thinking, 'No way. I will absolutely lose all faith in human nature if these parents are involved,'" Kennedy said on the new Netflix docu-series "The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann." "We were in the fortunate position in which we had the resources to be able to reach out and help them."

Patrick Kennedy, Brian's son, further explained he and his father's motivation for aiding the McCanns.

"If you can do something to help, you bloody better try and help. That's something that my dad is all about."

Brian got into contact with the McCann family's lawyers, believing Kate and Gerry to be totally innocent from the start.

"Kate started to tell the story and after 12 seconds, just reading the emotions, everything told me 100 percent that this woman was absolutely genuine and she was a victim," Brian said of first meeting with the couple.

Brian helped fund public relations management to navigate a challenging media landscape and also met with the McCann's lawyer to establish the best legal approach for the family. And he also put money toward expensive private investigations. In fact, both Brian and Patrick themselves traveled to the Atlas Mountains in Morocco to track down a young blond girl who resembled Madeleine and who was photographed traveling with a local family. (Upon their arrival, Brian noted blond children were fairly common in the Atlas Mountains and the girl in question was, in fact, with her own family).  

Meanwhile, Brian would go on to hire a Spanish private investigation firm named Método 3 to aggressively pursue leads, both on the ground and in the seedy corners of the dark web. Patrick and the private investigator working the case, Julian Peribañez, would re-trace the early steps of the investigation by interviewing the first suspects, Robert Murat and Sergey Malinka. Their aggressive tactics involved following the two for days and bugging their cars. Malinka has since spoken about the fear he experienced during this time.

"I don't feel sorry for anybody at that time. Irrelevant. What was very relevant was the little girl that was missing. The little girl that had been abducted. That's the person that I felt sorry for. Nobody else," Patrick said in the documentary.

The Kennedys fired Método 3 after its director, Francisco Marco, made statements to the media that they'd discovered who kidnapped Madeleine when they were nowhere close to a breakthrough.

Brian Kennedy then hired the Washington D.C.-based Oakley International to carry on with the investigation, but that firm's owner, Kevin Halligen, would soon be the subject of fraud allegations. Ultimately, none of the privately funded investigations led to the discovery of either Madeleine or anyone involved in her abduction.

Brian would go on to pursue other charitable efforts, including the establishment of his own trust, through which donations have been made to organizations like Space4Autism, according to the Macclesfield Express, a UK-based news organization. He also began investing in films including the 2014 historical film "The Homesman," according to Variety. He would contribute funds and act as a co-producer on "The Great Gilly Hopkins," a 2015 comedy-drama, according to Screen Daily.

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Post by Verdi on 10.08.20 1:35

A true scandal? How Brian Kennedy and the McCanns may have deceived everyone about the search for Madeleine McCann’s bones in the Arade Dam

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An article submitted for publication on The Madeleine Foundation website:

How Brian Kennedy and the McCann Team generated media publicity about a search for Madeleine’s remains in the Arade Dam, Portugal

Here we come to, surely, one of the most cynical and indeed sinister chapters in the whole sequence of events which followed the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. Much more detail is available in The Madeleine Foundation’s lengthy article on its website, titled: ‘The Madeleine McCann mystery and the strange role of Madeira lawyer, Marcos Aragão Correia: His links with the McCanns and Método 3…” (22)

In early February 2008, the British media reported on what purported to be a genuine, altruistic attempt by a Portuguese lawyer, Marcos Aragão Correia, to solve the mystery of what really happened to Madeleine McCann. He said he had used his own money to fund a search for Madeleine’s body in the Arade Dam, in southern Portugal, believing there was evidence that she had been killed and her body thrown into the dam.

In this article I will attempt to provide a number of indications that Marcos Aragão Correia may have been cynically paid by the McCann Team, via Método 3, to generate this story, which featured prominently in the British media over a period of weeks between January and March 2008.

Here are the details that I have been able to research:

It was in late January 2008 that Marcos Aragão Correia first came to public notice in Britain. He came forward with the dramatic news that he was sure that Madeleine’s body was lying in a reservoir. He added various details that suggested that he ‘knew’ Madeleine was dead. He said he had ‘been told’, by ‘underworld sources’, that Madeleine had been stolen to order by a gang of ruthless paedophiles, who had then, in turn, raped her, killed her and then dumped her body at the bottom of a reservoir - the Arade Dam in Portugal.

If anyone else had said this, the McCanns might have been deeply offended, even outraged. But as we shall uncover in the next few paragraphs, Marcos Aragão Correia, at the time of the search of the dam, was in the pay of Método 3, who, in turn, of course, were working for the McCanns. The shocking conclusion I have reached is that the McCann Team not only knew in advance that the ‘Arade Dam search’ story was about to break in the British media; they actually planned and planted it themselves. Brian Kennedy was the paymaster of Método 3, he appointed them and directed their work. So he also both knew and took part in planning this story and generating the media publicity about the search.

One aspect of Mr Aragão Correia’s claims that Madeleine McCann had been killed by paedophiles is that they chimed in almost perfect harmony with the repeated claims of both the McCanns and their team of public relations advisers that Madeleine had been abducted by evil men - quite probably paedophile predators. Story after story had appeared in the press during 2007 claiming that Madeleine had been stolen to order by a paedophile gang. The possibility that Madeleine had been abducted by paedophiles had in fact been specifically mentioned by Dr Gerald McCann the very night that Madeleine was reported missing.

We now need to find out just how Marcos Aragão Correia - up until now an obscure lawyer hailing from the Portuguese island of Madeira - burst on the scene and got deeply involved in the Madeleine McCann case. It’s not easy, since like so many things about this case, much remains hidden and secret - deliberately so, as the McCann Team choose not to tell us, just as Dr Kate McCann chose not to answer the 48 questions put to her by the Portuguese Police, and just as the McCanns and their friends refused to take part in a reconstruction in Portugal of the events of 3 May 2007, the night Madeleine was reported missing.

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Post by Verdi on 12.08.20 1:33

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Post by Tony Bennett on 12.08.20 15:19

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:A true scandal? How Brian Kennedy and the McCanns may have deceived everyone about the search for Madeleine McCann’s bones in the Arade Dam

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An article submitted for publication on The Madeleine Foundation website:

How Brian Kennedy and the McCann Team generated media publicity about a search for Madeleine’s remains in the Arade Dam, Portugal

Here we come to, surely, one of the most cynical and indeed sinister chapters in the whole sequence of events which followed the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. Much more detail is available in The Madeleine Foundation’s lengthy article on its website, titled: ‘The Madeleine McCann mystery and the strange role of Madeira lawyer, Marcos Aragão Correia: His links with the McCanns and Método 3…” (22)

In early February 2008, the British media reported on what purported to be a genuine, altruistic attempt by a Portuguese lawyer, Marcos Aragão Correia, to solve the mystery of what really happened to Madeleine McCann...


REMINDER of a short exchange of correspondence between me and Marcos Aragao Correia in April 2010. The complaint about his actual name is that I missed out his second of four names, Alexandre:

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

Mr Tony Bennett,
 
I was just informed of your immensely defamatory article against me, with the title "The Madeleine McCann mystery and the strange role of Madeira lawyer, Marcos Alexandre Aragão Correia" published on your website "The Madeleine Foundation", with the link

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] ... Aragoa.pdf.

The article is full of defaming lies against my person, even including lies concerning my full name.

Defamation is a crime not only in Portugal but also in the United Kingdom.

You have 48 hours to remove completely the article from the Internet.

If not, without further notice, I will proceed to contact Colleagues of the United Kingdom in order to initiate a criminal procedure against you, together with demand for compensation, in the Courts of the United Kingdom.


Portugal, 08 April 2010.

Marcos Aragão Correia,


Lawyer (Portuguese Bar number 427M).


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


MY REPLY:

Saturday 10 April 2010

Dear Dr Correia,

We have further considered your e-mail of 8 April, which we note was sent on the second anniversary of your visit on 8 April 2008 to Odemira Prison, where you talked to the Prison Governor there, Ana Maria Calada, and to your new client, Leonor Cipriano, whom you have represented so doggedly for the past two years. It must have been a day that you recall particularly vividly.

Dealing with preliminary matters, you say that we have got your name wrong. You state that to be ‘a lie’. If we have got it wrong, then we apologise, but let me explain that if we were incorrect, then we made a mistake, we did not tell a lie.

Your full name is given at various places on the internet as either Marcos Alexandre Aragão Correia or Marcos Teixeira Aragão Correia. More usually it is given as just Marcos Aragão Corriea, and that is used in the news media reports we have seen about you in Portugal. We have already therefore taken the step of removing the word ‘Alexandre’ in the title of our essay and have referred to you only as Marcos Aragão Correia in the rest of our essay. We apologise to you for our error.

Next, we would respectfully point out to you that you are incorrect in stating that defamation is a crime in the United Kingdom. It may be in Portugal. It is most certainly not in the United Kingdom. Here such matters are dealt with by the civil courts, and not by the police.

Dealing now with the substance of your letter, you have alleged that the article is defamatory but have not said how. The essay is a carefully researched piece of work, compiled over a period of time, which relies on translations of court documents, many writings or comments made by yourself, credible newspaper and TV reports of court proceedings, and so on. We have no reason not to rely on these as our source materials for the article about you.

We should like to point out that it has always been our stated policy to correct any written material we have produced, as son as reasonably practicable, whenever any proven error has been pointed out to us. Our past record is a testament to that. Therefore if you have reason to believe there are any errors in our essay, and you can demonstrate that we have made a mistake, then we shall be pleased to publish a suitable correction.

Moreover, it is inappropriate, and certainly cannot form the basis for any legal action, for you to claim that written material is defamatory, without in any way pointing out what parts of the essay are said to be defamatory and why. Clearly, if we simply report, as we do, your various actions and words which are on the record, this cannot be defamatory. It is your actions and words that form the basis of nearly all of our article about you.

We might also make a few other relevant observations.

For example, we quote in our article from a man named Mr Carlos Anjos, Head of the Police Union, who makes some adverse comments about you. It would not be in any way reasonable for you to consider bringing an action against me for reporting his remarks, unless you can demonstrate to us that you have successfully complained in a Portuguese court that his comments were defamatory of you. You could scarcely approach a British court on that matter if you have not previously taken any action on it in a court of law in your own country, where of course you are much better known and no doubt have a much more high-profile reputation to preserve.

To give one further example. At one point in my essay I describe you as ‘unreliable’. You need to fully appreciate that I have a clear basis for stating this. You will recall that in early 2008 you claimed, on the record, and as reported in many newspapers in your own country and over here in the United Kingdom, that underworld sources had told you personally by Sunday 6 May 2007 that Madeleine McCann had been, respectively, abducted, then raped, then murdered, and then her body thrown into a lake.

But several months later, at the court proceedings against your ‘target’, Gonçalo Amaral, and his four detective colleagues, you completely changed that story to say that you had not learnt about this from underworld sources at all. According to your new, entirely different, version of events, you now stated that you ‘knew’ Madeleine had been raped because you had an authentic vision late in the evening of Saturday 5 May after attending your first-ever Spiritualist Church meeting on Madeira. If I may quote the words you used in describing this experience: “Then, other images appeared to me, concerning what had happened to this girl. I saw a strongly-built man, blue eyes, somewhat balding and with blondish hair, brutally raping that girl and then strangling her with his hands, throwing the cadaver into a lake”.

To change your story in such a dramatic and comprehensive way about the alleged death of a three-year-old girl simply means that there are very good reasons to doubt that any reliance can be placed on your word.

You must also understand that there are very real grounds for doubting some of your claims when you make statements such as this, and I quote from a translation of your very own words: “Método 3 submitted me to a test in order to prove beyond all doubt whether or not my mediumistic abilities and my accounts were credible. They were fed up with following false leads. The fact is that the test gave totally positive results, according to what was confirmed to me personally by the Director of Método 3 in Barcelona himself. Following my mediumistic abilities passing Método 3’s stringent tests, Método 3 offered full support to my research”.

We know of no such ‘strtingent tests’ which could ‘prove beyond all doubt’ that your mediumistic abilities are credible. That is particularly so when at the same time you had been claiming that you were ‘99% certain’ that you would find Madeleine’s body in the Arade Dam.

You also give much contradictory information about how your searches of the Arade Dam and your legal work against Mr Gonçalo Amaral have been financed. First we heard that you were a ‘Good Samaritan’ doing the searches of the Arade Dam out of your own pocket and out of the goodness of your own heart. Then we heard later, in several newspaper articles, that you were being paid by Metodo 3 to do the searches, though you never disclosed how much they have paid you altogether.

Finally you made statements which we have seen that an association of spiritualists and mediums were also paying for you to search the dam twice, as you did. In your own words, you wrote: “So I offered myself to pay for the first phase of the searches in the dam, having later received much support, including financial support, from mediums and spiritualists who believed in and corroborated my theory”. You need to fully understand that such major inconsistencies in what you say about such an important matter only go to further erode your own credibility and, furthermore, they justify the fair and reasonable comments that we made about you in our internet article.

Finally, it is important that, if you are claiming that you yourself have been defamed, that your own record does not suggest that you are also very ready to defame others. In this instance, we note that during hearings concerning the 16 years and 8 months sentence handed down to your client Leonor Cipriano for killing her own eight-year-old daughter Joana, you were reported as stating to the court, about Goncalo Amaral: “We cannot therefore be impressed by the calamitous results of a criminal investigation handed to a dangerous and violent alcoholic [Gonçalo Amaral]. This is made even more catastrophic by the fact that we are dealing here with serious crimes committed against children. It is just as well that the authorities had the good sense to remove Gonçalo Amaral from the investigation, when the same alcoholic man repeated the same gross mistakes he made in the Joana Cipriano case, without any basis, and having no evidence against the mother of another missing child in the Algarve”.

You will find that if you were to bring proceedings in a court in the United Kingdom, and if the judge or jury hearing the case knew that you had called your opponent in court an ‘alcoholic’ twice - a matter of which the judge in the case clearly disapproved most strongly, according to the reports we have seen - then your own case that others have defamed you will be substantially undermined.

Unless and until you clarify where and how you say we have defamed you, or you point out any matters where we are manifestly in error, the article about you on our website will remain there, uncut, until further notice.

Yours sincerely

Tony Bennett
Secretary
The Madeleine Foundation

____________________

Dr Martin Roberts: "The evidence is that these are the pjyamas Madeleine wore on holiday in Praia da Luz. They were photographed and the photo handed to a press agency, who released it on 8 May, as the search for Madeleine continued. The McCanns held up these same pyjamas at two press conferences on 5 & 7June 2007. How could Madeleine have been abducted?"

Amelie McCann (aged 2): "Maddie's jammies!".  

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The McCanns Private Detectives - Page 2 Empty Re: The McCanns Private Detectives

Post by Verdi on 27.08.20 1:12

Madeleine McCann and Metodo 3: Private eyes, public lies

Sunday February 10 2008, 12.00am GMT, The Sunday Times

Paid £50,000 a month to find Madeleine McCann, the Spanish detective Francisco Marco said he hoped to have her home for Christmas. He issued this photofit of a suspect last month; it set off a media frenzy, but Portuguese police say it has ‘no credibility’. Christine Toomey turns the tables on a private eye who is anything but Francisco Marco might have been thinking about other matters on the day he apparently spoke out about his hopes that Madeleine McCann would be home for Christmas. It was the day his Spanish private detective agency, Metodo 3 - paid an estimated £50,000 a month to help find Madeleine - moved from cramped premises above a grocer's shop specialising in sausages in Barcelona's commercial district to a multi-million-pound suite of offices in a grand villa on one of the city's most prestigious boulevards.

When a taxi driver drops me off at Metodo's new premises, he tilts his finger against the tip of his nose and says "pijo" - meaning stuck-up or snobbish. Pointing to the restaurant on the ground floor, he says: "That's where people who like to show off go - so others can see their Rolex watches and designer clothes."

It is in his office on the second floor that Marco has agreed to meet me, the first British journalist, he says, to whom he has ever granted an interview. When I point out that he was filmed by a Panorama documentary crew in November claiming he was "very, very close to finding the kidnapper" of Madeleine, he corrects himself: "Well, apart from that." Marco will tell me later how who he has spoken to, and what he has or has not said, has been misunderstood.

But first I must wait, taking a seat at a long, highly polished boardroom table surrounded by pristine white-leather chairs. At one end of the room, discreetly lit shelves display an impressive collection of vintage box cameras and binoculars. Stacked against the walls are modern paintings waiting to be hung. It feels more like an art gallery than the hub of one of the most frantic manhunts of modern times.

There is no discernible ringing of telephones; little sign of activity of any kind, other than a woman searching for a lead to take a pet poodle for a walk and the occasional to-ing and fro-ing of workmen putting finishing touches to the sleek remodelling of the office complex.

It is not clear whether this is where the hotlines for any information about Madeleine are answered. Opposite the boardroom is an open-plan area of around half a dozen cubicles, equipped with banks of phones and computers. Most are empty when I arrive; admittedly it is lunch time. But I cannot ask about this.

"We won't answer any questions about Maddie. Maddie is off limits - is that understood?" Marco's cousin Jose Luis, another of the agency's employees, warns me sternly.

Catching me eyeing the setup, he is quick to explain that Metodo 3, or M-3, bought the premises earlier last year. Though I say nothing, I get the distinct impression he wants to make it clear that this was before M-3 persuaded those involved in decisions regarding the £1m Find Madeleine Fund - partially made up of donations from the public and partly from business backers such as Brian Kennedy - to sign a six-figure, six-month contract with the firm, whose financial fortunes now seem assured by the worldwide publicity they've since received.

"All the remodelling work took months, so we only moved in on December 14," he says, hesitating slightly before adding: "Moving is better at Christmas." The implication that this was a quiet period for M-3 is strange, as it was exactly the time Marco is reported to have said his agency was "hoping, God willing" that Madeleine would be imminently reunited with her family. Marco has since denied he said this.

I cannot ask him to clarify what he did say, or whether talking about an ongoing investigation is potentially detrimental. Instead, I am left to discuss the matter with a handful of other private detective agencies in Barcelona, the private-eye capital of Spain. What they tell me is disturbing.

I expect a certain amount of rivalry, and some of what they say about M-3 could be dismissed as jealous gossip. But they claim otherwise.

They say there is nothing they would like more than to see M-3 succeed in solving the mystery of Madeleine's disappearance. But they worry that M-3's inflated claims of progress in the case is making a laughing stock of the rest of them. References to Inspector Clouseau cut deep. They are proud that, unlike their UK counterparts, Spanish private detectives have to be vetted and licensed. They must also have a specialised university degree in private investigation. More importantly, in a profession where discretion is critical, they worry about the effect of such public declarations on the progress of any investigation. It is in the days following reports that the Find Madeleine Fund is considering sacking M-3 that I talk to Marco - though of course I cannot discuss this with him.

Clarence Mitchell, the spokesman for Kate and Gerry McCann, Madeleine's parents, says he believes M-3 "put themselves forward" for the task, as did a number of other companies. Just a week after the four-year-old's disappearance from the McCanns' holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on May 3 last year, Portuguese police had announced that official searches were being wound down. Initially, the British security company Control Risks Group, a firm founded by former SAS men, was called on for advice. Mitchell confirms that the company is still "assisting in an advisory capacity", but he says that the reason the

Spanish detective agency was hired was because of Portugal's "language and cultural connection" with Spain. "If we'd had big-booted Brits or, God forbid, Americans, we'd have had doors slammed in our face, and it's quite likely we could have been charged with hindering the investigation, as technically it's illegal in Portugal to undertake a secondary investigation," Mitchell explains. "But because it's Metodo 3, [Alipio] Ribeiro [national director of Portugal's Policia Judiciara] is turning a blind eye." Portuguese police are reported to dismiss M-3 as "small fry".

Mitchell says the decision to hire M-3 on a six-month contract from September was taken "collectively" by Gerry McCann, and the family's lawyers and backers, on the grounds that the agency had the manpower, profile and resources to work in several countries. "You can argue now whether it was the right decision or not," he says, referring to widespread reports that M-3 will find its contract terminated in March - if it hasn't been already - and not just because the Find Madeleine Fund is dwindling. "But operationally Metodo 3 are good on the ground," he insists.

It was M-3, for instance, who recently commissioned a police artist to draw a sketch of the man they believe could be involved in Madeleine's disappearance, despite Portuguese-police claims that the sketch had "no credibility".

Clearly, the McCanns are desperate to keep Madeleine's disappearance in the public eye. And the release of photofits by M-3 will help to achieve this. The McCanns insist, however, that they are not engaged in a bidding war for interviews with American television.

But when 35-year-old Marco finally breezes into his company boardroom and throws himself into a chair opposite me, I do not get the impression that the prospect of losing the contract that has brought his company such notoriety is playing much on his mind.

Marco slaps on the table a 144-page pre-prepared dossier of articles written in the Spanish press about himself and M-3. He goes on to list some of those in the city he says I have already been speaking to about his company. Had my movements been monitored? If so, why would a private detective agency be interested in this at a time when they were supposed to be tirelessly searching for the most famous missing child in the world? This confounds me until, after talking to Marco for half an hour, I conclude that what motivates him - as much as, if not more than, his professed desire to present Madeleine with the doll he boasts he carries around in his briefcase to hand to her when he finds her - is a sense of self-regard, self-publicity and money.

) ) ) ) )

In most of the many pictures of himself included in the material he hands me, Marco looks a little nerdy. He wears the same serious expression, slightly askew glasses and suit and tie in nearly all of them. But when we meet he has a more debonair look. He is wearing a black polo-neck jumper underneath a sports jacket, sharper, and better-adjusted half-rimmed glasses, and a fringe that looks as though it has been blow-dried. It is as if his image of how a suave private eye should be has finally been realised.

In contrast to the other private eyes I meet, however, Marco is anything but relaxed. While most of them sit back easily in their chairs, trying to size me up, Marco leans towards me as we talk. He presses his hands hard on the table, almost in a prayer position, to emphasise a point, and has an intense, slightly unnerving stare.

He seems eager to please. He summons a female assistant on several occasions to bring me material, including a book he has recently written, to illustrate what he is talking about. Even when I make it clear this is not necessary - aware that these distractions eat into the time we have to talk - he insists, partly showing off.

When I ask about his background, Marco summons her to photocopy the first pages of his doctoral thesis on private investigation: he has a master's degree and a PhD in penal law. He gets strangely agitated when she can't find it, telling her to carry on looking, then mutters that he will have to look for it himself. Eventually he starts to reminisce about his youth. As a teenager, Marco says, he was so keen to become a private detective that he would get up at 5am to follow people on his scooter and record their movements before starting and after finishing his studies. His mother, Maria "Marita" Fernandez Lado, founded M-3 in 1986, when he was a boy, and he used to help out in the agency every holiday.

I hear several different accounts of what Marita was doing before she set up the agency. According to her son, she was working on a fashion magazine when, by chance, through Marco and his brother's boyhood love of sailing, she met and became friends with a private detective. "From that moment, she decided she wanted to create her own detective agency, and wanted it to be a big company with big cases, a real business. She wanted to change the public image of a small private detective concerned with infidelities," Marco says.

In Spain, private eyes are sometimes called huelebraguetas - "fly [zip] sniffers". One of the reasons Barcelona has always been the home of so many of them, Marco explains, is that Catalonia - traditionally one of the wealthiest regions in Spain - had many rich families wanting to safeguard their inheritance. So parents would employ "fly sniffers" to check out the backgrounds of the people their sons or daughters wanted to marry. M-3 took a different track. It started specialising in investigating financial swindles, industrial espionage and insurance fraud. His mother was the first private detective, Marco says, to provide video evidence used in court to unmask an insurance fraudster: she filmed a man reading who had claimed to be blind. Marco also speaks about how in the early 1990s his mother had helped advise the Barcelona police, who were setting up a new department dedicated to investigating gambling and the welfare of children. He says his mother advised them on how to track adolescents who had run away from home, helping them to trace 15 or 16 of them at that time. (It is when I try to bring the interview back to this subject, to see if these were the children the agency has talked about finding in the past, that the interview grinds to a halt.)

But the agency almost came to grief early on, when police raided its offices, and Marco, his mother, father and brother were arrested and briefly jailed in 1995 on charges of phone-tapping and attempting to sell taped conversations. They were never prosecuted, as it was clear that the police had entrapped them.

Their big break came nearly 10 years later, when M-3 was credited with tracking down one of Spain's most-infamous spies, Francisco Paesa, a notorious arms dealer and double agent also known as "El Zorro" (The Fox) and "the man with a thousand faces". Paesa fled Spain after being charged with money-laundering. His family claimed he died in Thailand in 1998 and arranged for Gregorian masses to be sung for his soul for a month at a Cistercian monastery in northern Spain. Acting for a client who claimed to have been defrauded by Paesa's niece, M-3 traced the fugitive to Luxembourg. At the behest of the Spanish national newspaper El Mundo, the agency then traced him to Paris. Paesa remains on the run, however.

"This was just one of our great achievements. Our biggest successes have never been made public," boasts Marco. "If you speak to other detectives in Spain, I don't think they will speak very highly of us because they are envious. But as far as other detectives around the world are concerned, we are the biggest, the most famous; the ones who work well."

Again in collaboration with El Mundo, and again by following an illegal money trail, M-3 last year tracked down the daughter of the wanted Nazi war criminal Aribert Heim to a farm in Chile. "This was pro-bono work, and we only do it when we have time," says Marco. The hard-pressed detective did have time just before Christmas, however, to launch a book he had co-written with a Spanish journalist. The book claims that clients of M-3 sacked directors of a charity involved in sponsoring children in the Third World, were victims of a plot to discredit them by people associated with a Spanish branch of Oxfam who were jealous that the public was giving them large donations. The sacked directors are still under investigation for fraud.

It is perhaps because Marco has spent so much time collaborating with journalists in the past that he feels so comfortable talking to the press - the Spanish press, at least - about his investigation into Madeleine McCann. In November he gave two lengthy interviews about the case, one to El Mundo and another to a Barcelona newspaper, La Vanguardia.

In the interview with El Mundo, Marco talks touchingly about how his six-year-old son asks him the same question every evening when he kisses him goodnight: "Papa, have you found Maddie?" Because the little boy is learning to read, the article continues, he knows that his father is "the most famous detective in the world".

But why, the journalist Juan Carlos de la Cal asks, would anyone in the UK, "the country of Sherlock Holmes, with all its cold-war spies and one of the most reliable secret services in the world", have chosen M-3 to help? "Because we were the only ones who proposed a coherent hypothesis about the disappearance of their daughter," Marco replies, explaining that M-3's "principal line of enquiry" at that time - the article was published on November 25 - was "paedophiles". He talks about how he "cried with rage" when he investigated on the internet how paedophiles operate.

Apart from these comments made by Marco, little concrete is known about how M-3 has been conducting its investigation. In the same article, Marco's mother says the agency, which she claims has located 23 missing children in the past, has "20 or so" people working exclusively on the McCann case. M-3 was said at that time to be receiving an average of 100 calls a day "from the four quarters of the globe", and to have half a dozen translators answering them in different languages. The agency has distributed posters worldwide bearing Madeleine's picture with the telephone number of a dedicated hotline it has set up to receive tip-offs. The interview was carried out just after Marco returned from a two-week trip to Morocco, a country he describes as being known for child-trafficking and a "perfect" place to hide a stolen child. The north receives Spanish TV, he says, but the rest of Morocco knows nothing about the affair.

Yet in an interview published three weeks earlier in the newspaper La Vanguardia, Marco claimed that the agency had "around 40 people, here and in Morocco" working on the case, on the hypothesis that the child was smuggled out of Portugal, via the Spanish port of Tarifa, to Morocco, "where a blonde girl like Madeleine would be considered a status symbol". At that time he said he didn't want to think about paedophilia being involved. Asked how often his agency contacts the McCanns with updates, Marco replies "daily". He adds that the fee that M-3 is charging for its services is not high. He says that it is "symbolic".

In the same article - accompanied by a photograph of Marco holding a Sherlock Holmes-style hat - he says with absolute certainty that Madeleine is alive. "If I didn't think she was alive, I wouldn't be looking for her!" At first he states categorically that he will find her before M-3's six-month contract runs out in March. But also in the same article the journalist explains that Marco proposes taking him out to dinner if he does not find the missing four-year-old before April 30. Unless all such statements are "misunderstandings", Marco is in danger of leaving everyone with hopes that are not fulfilled.

When I start to touch on these themes - the claim, for instance, that M-3 traces around 300 missing people a year - Marco is quick to clarify. He says that, of the 1,000 or so investigations his agency undertakes every year, "between 100 and 200 involve English people who owe money and have fled England for Spain; the same with Germans, etcetera, etcetera". This makes it sound as if much of the agency's work

is little more than aiding bailiffs or debt-collecting, though I do not believe this to be the case. But when I ask him to elaborate on the 23 missing children his mother is reported to have said the agency has located in the past, Marco eases himself away from the table for the first time, tilting far back in his chair. He cannot talk about that on the grounds of confidentiality, he says. Shortly after this, his cousin Jose Luis, who has sat mostly silent until now, calls time on the interview with a chopping motion of his hand.

As I leave M-3's office I pass another door discreetly announcing it is that of a private Swiss bank. As I take a seat in the restaurant downstairs for lunch, I notice Marco's father, Francisco Marco Puyuelo, sitting close by. I nod at him and smile. He does not smile back. I have heard unsettling reports about Puyuelo.

He is rather menacing-looking, and I feel uncomfortable as he sits staring at me, slowly spooning chocolate ice cream into his mouth.

) ) ) ) )

It is easy to feel a little paranoid in Barcelona. Nearly every quarter seems to have its own private detective agency. Offices are prominently advertised; on the short ride in from the airport

I pass four. The city's yellow-pages directory has six sides of listings. According to Catalonia's College of Private Detectives, the professional association to which private detectives working in the region are obliged to belong, of the estimated 2,900 licensed private eyes in Spain - around 1,500 of them actively working - 370 are in Catalonia, mostly Barcelona.

The city has traditionally had a prestigious record for private investigation. One of Spain's most well-known detectives, Eugenio Velez-Troya, was based in Barcelona, where he helped set up the first university course in private investigation, covering subjects such as civil and criminal law, forensic analysis and psychology.

One of the largest private detective agencies in Spain, Grupo Winterman, founded by Jose Maria Vilamajo more than 30 years ago, is based in Barcelona, though the company now has 10 offices in different cities with a staff of around 150. Vilamajo is the only detective prepared to talk on the record; the others prefer to remain anonymous for fear of professional reprisal. He talks about how Barcelona came to have so many private detectives, pointing out that competition in the field is now so intense that it is pushing individual agencies to "specialise".

Vilamajo is the only private detective apart from Marco to receive me in a spacious company boardroom, which, it strikes me, might be the model on which Metodo 3, anticipating rapid expansion, is basing its new office setup.

I meet the other private eyes either in bars or in their more modest premises, with more cloak-and-dagger decor, though nearly all have an impressive array of certificates praising their work. One has the theme music from the film The Godfather as a mobile-phone ring tone.

All talk of the "different way" M-3 has of operating from other agencies in the city. Most of what they say I have no way of substantiating. Traditionally, they say, M-3 has wined and dined clients more than others, sometimes holding grand "round-table" suppers to which it invites important figures in the community.

One ageing sleuth slides across the table a Spanish newspaper article entitled "Detectives with marketing" , in case I might have missed it. A short piece referring to the book Marco recently co-wrote about the alleged charity conspiracy, it makes the point that the book "is another step in the direction of incorporating marketing into the business of private investigation".

When I ask what's wrong with a business marketing itself, my question elicits a long sigh. Suddenly I can see that underlying much of the rancour M-3's rivals feel towards it is a sense that they are not "old-school gumshoes" working in the shadows. One of their criticisms of Marco is that "he doesn't know much about the street. He's good at theory. He's like a manager, always dressed up in a suit and tie".

So he has a team of others to do the legwork, I argue. Another long sigh. "Not as many as he claims," comes the response. On this point, all those I speak to agree. None believes M-3's claims that it has 40 people working on the hunt for Madeleine, since the maximum number M-3 employs in its Barcelona office, they believe, is a dozen, with another few in its Madrid branch.

But again, I point out, it could have any number of operatives working for it in other countries, namely Portugal and Morocco.

My comment draws a weary smile. Metodo 3 company records for the six years up to 2005 appear to show a decline in the number of permanent employees listed - from 26 in 1999 to just 12 in 2005 - although there could be some accounting explanation for this.

Perhaps the most worrying of the detectives' concerns is the consistent complaint that M-3 is using its involvement in the search for Madeleine to raise its profile and that Marco's statements about how close he is to finding the child could be seriously prejudicing attempts to find out the truth. "If the agency fails to solve the mystery of Madeleine's disappearance, that failure will be forgotten in a few years," said one. "But M-3 will be famous and, ultimately, that is what they want."

"They are making us look ridiculous," says another detective. "The English are looking at us and laughing and we are very worried, very upset about it. They [M-3] are denigrating the ethics of our profession."

To seek guidance on how private detectives are expected to behave, I visit the president of Catalonia's College of Private Detectives: Jose Maria Fernandez Abril. After making the point that he is unable to speak about any individual member of his professional association, he proceeds to carefully read me a statement that begins: "Following the media impact of affairs in which detectives belonging to the college are involved…" It clearly echoes the concerns that others I have spoken to voice about the conduct of Metodo 3.

"No general conclusions should be drawn about the profession from the actions of any individual," Abril reads, before helpfully explaining that this means: "You can't go around saying you are the best in the world, implying that everyone else is somehow worse."

More importantly, there are repeated references to how members are obliged to comply with the college's strict code of conduct, which includes: not stating with certainty the result of an investigation and not revealing information about an investigation without agreeing it first with the client.

In other words, if M-3 was to argue that announcing just when it believed it would find Madeleine would help its investigation, the announcement should have been cleared with the McCanns. Given the deep dismay Gerry McCann is reported to have expressed over Marco's comments about how close the agency was to finding his daughter's kidnappers and about her being reunited with her family for Christmas, it seems unlikely any agreement over such statements was ever made.

As I leave, Abril informs me that the college has in recent years organised an annual "Night of the Detectives" supper. This year it will be held in March. He invites me to attend. At the supper, various prizes are presented. Among them is one for the fiction author they believe has contributed most to the public understanding of investigative work. This year they have awarded the prize to Dan Brown, author of the worldwide bestseller The Da Vinci Code.

They are a little hurt that he has not replied to, or even acknowledged, their invitation to attend.All this could be almost funny if I were not constantly aware that the reason I have come to Barcelona is because an exhausted little girl enjoying a family holiday went to sleep in pink pyjamas alongside her twin brother and sister on the night of May 3 last year, then disappeared. The anguish and desperation of her parents account for the Spanish detective-agency's lucrative contract. The boasting and apparent false hopes fed to them by Marco could yet prove to be his downfall.

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Post by Verdi on 27.08.20 1:20

Netflix Madeleine McCann documentary trailer.

Introduction by Julian Peribañez of Metodo3 private detective agency, hired by team McCann to assist with the 'search' for Madeleine McCann.


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Post by Verdi on 28.08.20 1:41

March 20, 2019, 6:14 PM ET
Missing Persons

Who Is Julian Peribañez And What DID He Uncover About The Madeleine McCann Case?

Julian Peribañez relentlessly tracked down leads in the Madeleine McCann case, even infiltrating the seedy underworld of sex trafficking to try to find the missing 3-year-old.

By Jill Sederstrom

When 3-year-old Madeleine McCann vanished from her bed in the middle of the night, one investigator was willing to stop at nothing to find her, going on high-speed car chases, leading covert operations, and even infiltrating the seedy, dark underworld of child trafficking in the months after her disappearance to try to uncover the truth.

Julian Peribañez was consumed with the case, even answering calls to a tip line on his own cell phone at all hours of the night to gain new clues about what may have happened to the missing 3-year-old, who was thought to have been abducted in May 2007 while on a family vacation in Praia da Luz, Portugal.

The investigator, who had grown up watching police movies and James Bond flicks, worked for Metodo 3, a private investigation firm hired by the McCann family and wealthy benefactor Brian Kennedy to explore avenues that weren’t being considered by police in Portugal. In Netflix's new docu-series "The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann," which delves into the infamous case, Peribañez's search efforts are examined again.

“I said ‘Go for it. Delve into what you know you can delve into, below the surface of what’s going on, and the criminal factions in that area in Portugal, and Spain and Morocco. Find out what you possibly can’ and they went about it, I have to say, with great gusto,” Kennedy said of hiring Metodo 3 in 2007 in “The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann.”

After meeting Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, Peribañez said the mission became “personal” and he set off to Portugal where he spent eight months on the ground working the case.

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Julian Peribañez was an investigator on the Madeleine McCann case. Photo: Netflix

“Julian was someone that was very thorough and very energetic, and he was unforgiving with certain things, of pursuing people,” Patrick Kennedy, Brian’s son, said. “He was the type that would go all out.”

Brian had asked Patrick to help manage the investigation, so Patrick and Peribañez worked together on occasion in the case.

Peribañez did all sorts of things while in Portugal. Investigators tracked leads from potential witnesses, worked with sketch artists to create images to release to the public, searched an abandoned property where the young girl was rumored to be, and tailed possible suspects.

“We found names and addresses of pedophiles in the Praia de Luz area. We’d follow them. We weren’t allowed to do that, we needed permission of the police to do that, but quite frankly I didn’t care,” Patrick said.

Peribañez said his status as a private investigator gave him “more freedom to investigate than being a cop.”

For example, when Robert Murat, a British-Portuguese real estate agent who seemed overly eager to help in the case, emerged as a potential suspect, investigators put a tracker on his car to try to see where he went and who he might meet up with up (Murat later discovered the device).

Peribañez also followed Sergey Malinka, a business associate of Murat's who was also considered a suspect in the case, and even offered him up to “half a million or something” to talk about the case after being instructed by his boss to suggest the money.

Malinka denied knowing anything about the case and refused the money.

There was high media scrutiny about both men at the time; however, after looking closely at both suspects Peribañez said it seemed unlikely either were involved.

But Peribañez didn't stop his investigation here. He was intrigued by another similar case in Portugal in 2004, which involved the disappearance of a local girl named Joana Cipriano. Her mother said the 8-year-old had left her home to go to the store in the Portuguese village of Figueira and never returned.

Police later claimed the girl was killed by her mother and uncle after she walked in on them having sex. Police said they chopped her up and placed her body parts in a small refrigerator at the home before throwing her remains to the pigs. Her mother, Leonor Cipriano, and her brother, João Cipriano were both sentenced to jail for the crime, ABC News reported in 2007.

Watch Out Of Sight: The Disappearance Of Madeleine McCann Friday, March 29 at 9/8c, only on Oxygen

But the documentary focused on a series of photographs seemingly showing Leonor battered and bruised, suggesting she may have been coerced into giving the confession.

Peribañez later tracked down João's former cellmate and recorded an interview with the unnamed man, who claimed the girl was alive but had been sold to a foreign family.

“I know that he received quite a lot of money,” the cellmate can be heard saying in the video played in the documentary. He also claimed to have seen a photo of the girl after she disappeared. In the image, he said, she appeared to be in a room that was “not from somewhere poor.”

The documentary speculated that McCann may have met a similar fate and could have been the victim of sex trafficking.

“This was the biggest moment for me on the case, because it really gave me proof that there was an organization working in Portugal and it also gave us a hope of trying to find that network. And if we could find the network, we could find Madeleine,” Peribañez said.

Typically, he said, sex trafficking victims are from lower class backgrounds, suggesting the value for Madeleine could have been significant and possibly worth the risk to the abductor.

“My idea is that the value that Madeleine had was really high because if they took her it was because they were going to get a lot of money,” he said in the documentary, adding that he believes she could still be alive.

Peribañez began to infiltrate the dark web into secretive trafficking and child pornography channels in the hopes of learning something about McCann’s fate.

These dark web channels aren’t indexed, making it difficult to track users and a nefarious way for criminals to communicate with one another.

“There’s a tsunami of indecent images online. Current estimates are, in the UK alone, that 100,00 IP addresses, computer IP addresses can be downloading incident images of children at any given moment in time,” Jim Gamble, a former senior police officer with the CEOP, said in the docu-series.

To gain access to the channels, Peribañez had to pretend to be of a similar mindset and comment on how “good” the images were. The work brought him to the “darkest places” of humanity, he said, and forced him to see images he’ll have to carry with him for the rest of his life.

“I’ve done thousands of cases, the Madeleine case, I’ve seen the worst things a human being can see,” he said.

But as Peribañez was delving further into the sex trafficking underworld, his boss at Metodo 3 made comments to the media that ultimately led the family to fire the firm and hire another investigative firm to continue the work.

Francisco Marco, the director general of Metodo 3, claimed in 2007 that the agency knew who had taken Madeleine and that they hoped to have the little girl home by Christmas, according to the Evening Standard.

Peribañez said in the documentary that the claim was “unbelievable” and that they didn’t have any clue at the time who may have taken the young girl. The family soon decided not to work with the firm any longer.

“I was ashamed of course,” the private investigator said. “I was shocked and ashamed.”

Although Metodo 3 would no longer be working on the McCann case, Peribañez’ efforts to infiltrate the sex trafficking world would lead to multiple arrests.

The private investigator handed the research he’d done to Spain’s Policia Nacional, which launched an investigation dubbed “Lolita P-mix.”

As a result of the investigation, 13 people were arrested, according to Juan Carlos Ruiloba, the former head of the crime unit Policia Nacional.

“That’s the best thing that came from this case,” Peribañez said. “The thing that I am most proud of.”

Years after the McCann investigation, Marco, Peribañez and two other detectives would be arrested as part of a political spy scandal that rocked Spain, according to El Pais. The agency was accused of recording conversations between the head of the Popular Party in Catalonia, Alicia Sánchez-Camacho, and an ex-girlfriend of the son of the region’s ex-premier about alleged money laundering activities.

Peribañez and suspect Alex Borrequero allegedly told investigators they had recorded the conversation on the orders of their boss.

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Post by Verdi on 21.09.20 16:18

The McCann team hired private detectives, from the perspective of a professional Private Detective..

The Disappearance Of Madeleine McCann:
Rogue Investigators?

In my last post, on Netflix’s “Dirty John” [https://www.privatedetective.london/netflixs-dirty-john-does-that-really-happen/] I mentioned enjoying watching a film or TV series in my rare moments of downtime. When I’d finished the aforementioned series, Netflix pointed me in the direction of “The Disappearance Of Madeleine McCann”. This documentary on the well-known, incredibly sad story greatly intrigued me, as someone in the investigation industry.

Of course, it wouldn’t be professional of me to speculate on the case itself, but one aspect I am well-placed to comment on is the investigative element – specifically the involvement of two private detectives – Spanish company Metodo, and British investigator Kevin Halligen. The stories surrounding these detectives’ activities really serve to highlight an issue that’s a real personal bugbear – rogues in the industry.
Metodo – McCann Case Misconduct?

Certainly it’s clear that investigator Julian Peribanez – working at the time for Spanish investigation company Metodo – had the passion and determination to succeed. Something on which, sometimes, it’s impossible to put a price. However, some of the practices Metodo used during the investigation are questionable, to say the least.

This relates in particular to surveillance operations. As an outside observer, but one with over 25 years in the industry, with a focus on quality, success of service, and ethical conduct at all times, it is plainly apparent that so much of what we at PDL build into good surveillance services was absent.

Here are a few of the most crucial standards of good surveillance, and how Metodo didn’t meet them:

Multiple Operatives Needed: We would use a disciplined cell of multiple dedicated surveillance operatives. Metodo used only one private detective

Specialist Tools / Equipment / Vehicles Needed: The key is of course that subject under surveillance is unaware. Metodo did not even change their surveillance vehicle, working several days straight in the same car.

A good private detective knows his/her weaknesses, and knows when it’s right to delegate or call in specialist teams. The above errors are ones that properly trained surveillance operatives simply wouldn’t make. The bad surveillance practice exemplified by the above points led to the Russian suspect at that time becoming aware he was under surveillance.

Additionally, Metodo gave press interviews and statements which would appear to falsely claim they were close to solving the case. A private investigation company (as opposed to a public service with certain public duties) giving press interviews is something we deem wholly unprofessional. This is something we’d never do at PDL – not least due to our duty to private clients, but moreover legally, due to our nondisclosure agreements.
Kevin Halligen – Rogue Investigator?

It would appear that British investigator Kevin Halligen used the position and power he held to benefit from some of the funds intended for the Madeleine search. Halligen denied doing so, then later was convicted of a separate fraud in the USA and imprisoned.

Taking on any client, whether a business matter, matrimonial matter, or anything else is a very serious process. The accuracy and honesty an investigator provides to a client informs decisions going forward and are vital in the success of any investigation.

Halligen was trusted to find a missing child, and it would appear he may have had a personal agenda in mind, and acted wrongly and dishonestly.
Summary

Notwithstanding that I was not present and didn’t work on any investigations in relation to these matters, it would seem that these private detectives may have been lax and taken advantage of the situation, exploiting it to their advantage after something evidently unthinkable happened to the McCanns.

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Post by Verdi on 21.09.20 16:32

I have a strong suspicion that the former Metodo3 employee, Julian Peribanez, is in some way connected with Jon Clarke of the Olive Press.  

Like Peribanez, Jon Clarke has put his credibility and reputation on the line, in his endevours to support the McCanns and further his career.  In the guise of an investigative journalist (I'm presuming), he took himself off to Praia da Luz early on Friday 4th May 2007, so say he, and has been meddling with the case ever since.  He has made numerous claims of heroic Bondesque ventures, most of which have proved to be untrue.

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Not to say Jon Clarke of the Olive Press, was/is in the direct employ of team McCann but his actions over the years have followed a similar pattern to Julian Peribanez, ex-Metodo3 private dick.

In short - false claims and fabrication, always with self a forethought.


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Post by Verdi on 22.09.20 1:51

Julian Peribanez is Spanish, Jon Clark is based in Spain, they have a mutual interest - Gerry and Kate McCann. There is strong evidence, if not proof, that Metodo3 were engaged by team McCann to divert attention away from the official Portuguese investigation, coordinated by Dr Gonçalo Amaral, until he was unfairly removed from the case in October 2007. Coincidentally, not long after the McCanns were named arguidos and fled to the UK.

Metodo3 contributed nothing to 'the search' for Madeleine McCann,I doubt that was even their brief when agreeing to the lucrative contract offered by team McCann. They did however manage to conjure up numerous dubious witnesses who provided that perfect escape clause for the two prime suspects .... Gerry and Kate McCann.

Jon Clarke of the Olive Press has contributed nothing constructive to the case of missing Madeleine McCann. It's a mystery in itself quite how he came to be involved in the first place - aside from his extensive contacts with the British tabloid press. The same tabloid press who have relentlessly worked in unison in support of the McCann faction over the years.

The mystery of Madeleine McCann has got to rate up there with the greatest frauds of all time.

I don't think the truth will ever be known, or acknowledged officially but nonetheless, with the help of CMOMM, I do believe the case will go down in history as The Greatest Show on Earth.

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Post by pauloalexandre on 22.09.20 12:07

The truth has always been there. People just have to be disciplined enough to look at what the evidence is, and not get trapped in speculation circle that gets them nowhere.

The private detectives were never going to be reliable, due to their affiliation with the McCann team. They were more trouble than good, because they kept putting out false leads and that distracted the Portuguese police from looking at the evidence.

As for Jon Clarke, well he's a pseudo-journalist, much like Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan. Their job is to make you not look at the evidence.

As with any crime, you first have to understand "what happened", before determining "how it happened". But the thing with the people abovementioned is that they started with the assumption of what happened (abduction) and then skipped the "how it was done" part and started looking for the boogeymen.

What happened is not consistent with an abduction, but if you get people to assume that's what happened, you're done. They will look past the evidence and will never solve the crime.

That's a great way to cover-up something.

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Post by PeterMac on 23.09.20 6:35

Neatly put.  I borrowed some of your wording to my letter to The Times
See the "Latest McCann suspect: thread.
Thank you
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Post by Tony Bennett on 23.09.20 21:29

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:Julian Peribanez is Spanish, Jon Clark is based in Spain, they have a mutual interest - Gerry and Kate McCann. There is strong evidence, if not proof, that Metodo 3 were engaged by Team McCann to divert attention away from the official Portuguese investigation, coordinated by Dr Gonçalo Amaral, until he was unfairly removed from the case in October 2007. Coincidentally, not long after the McCanns were named arguidos and fled to the UK.

The mystery of Madeleine McCann has got to rate up there with the greatest frauds of all time. I don't think the truth will ever be known
When we think of the private investigators, all roads lead to Brian Kennedy. 

Why were Metodo 3 employed in the first place? - a low-down, disreputable so-called detective agency which from time to time ventured into criminality and indeed was dissolved in 2012 amid a welter of proven allegations of illegal telephone-tapping. 

Why did Brian Kennedy pick this shabby agency, over 1,000 miles away in Barcelona? Well, because, as was known at the time, he had a villa on the outskirts of the city, where he spent half the year. He probably already knew Francisco Marco, Metodo 3's boss, and his cronies like Julian Peribanez and the Giminez Raso twins. The Giminez Raso twins each spent four years on remand for their part in assisting a 27-strong, Barcelona, drugs gang, known - said the judge in the case - for its extreme violence.

What about the English connection?

Gary Hagland, known only for his expertise in money-laundering regulations, a man whose book written under the pen-name Mason Horsburgh wrote of how he had travelled to Saturn and back in an alien spacecraft one afternoon. He was housed in a secret house in Knutsford for 6 months, the same house where later Dave Edgar and Arthur Cowley were to pretend for the 2009 Channel 4 Mockumentary to be really searching for Madeleine. 

Edgar lived close by in Crewe, Cowley not far away in a cottage on the 1,000-foot Halykn Mountain, just over the Cheshire border in Flintshire.  Crewe, Halkyn Mountain and Knutsford...all within a stone's throw of Brian Kennedy's palace, Swettenham Hall, once owned by one of the controversial McAlpine brothers. And who was it who set up the fake website of the fake Alpha Investigations Group? - why, a close friend of Brian Kennedy?    

And who hand-picked the rogue Kevin/Richard Halligen, who turned out after his death/murder to be 'Richard Powell'? Brian Kennedy.  

Who appointed Henri Exton, the former Head of Covert Intelligence for MI5 to produce two fake efits of 'Smithman' which fooled the media, the world and even some on CMOMM? Brian Kennedy.

Who recruited the mysterious Tim Craig-Harvey, with his government connections, who appeared on that silly programme 'The McCanns and the Con-Man', which in turn was yet one more con - a con about a con-man?  Brian Kennedy.   

Who recruited that American fake doctor, Dr Richard Parton, who also appeared in that programme? Probably Brian Kennedy

Who was it who approached the famed Californian-Portuguese beauty Isabelle McFadden, better known as the 'Queen of Portugal', to help him start a fresh look at what really happened to Madeleine McCann? Brian Kennedy again. They had cosy chats together. 

Those with long memories in this case will recall a photo taken in the Praia da Luz church on Sunday 13 May 2007 of a man who looked the spitting image of Brian Kennedy.

Was it him?

Did Brian Kennedy do all of this our of the pure, unadulterated goodness of his own heart?

I very much doubt it.

What was his personal interest in the case? 

Apart from being a Jehovah's Witness, like Robert Murat and Mrs Robert Murat, formerly Michaela Walczuk.

Exactly how are all these people connected? To whom and to what?             

____________________

Dr Martin Roberts: "The evidence is that these are the pjyamas Madeleine wore on holiday in Praia da Luz. They were photographed and the photo handed to a press agency, who released it on 8 May, as the search for Madeleine continued. The McCanns held up these same pyjamas at two press conferences on 5 & 7June 2007. How could Madeleine have been abducted?"

Amelie McCann (aged 2): "Maddie's jammies!".  

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Post by Verdi on 23.09.20 22:08

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:When we think of the private investigators, all roads lead to Brian Kennedy.

I agree wholeheartedly!

I frequently use the words 'team McCann, when referring to the united defence mechanism - my view has always been that Brian Kennedy was/is the leader of the pact pack.

Aside from any other reason, and they are manifold, Brian Kennedy was/is a very wealthy man. With wealth, power follows close behind and with power just about anything is achievable - be it within the law or outside the law, or indeed any moral standing.

In my view he is the mastermind behind this whole masquerade. Even if not in the very early days back at Praia da Luz, almost certainly shortly after. I don't think it's ever been established exactly when Metodo3 were engaged. Press reports and rumours closer to home, suggest shortly after the McCanns fled back to England, after being named arguidos but that takes a lot of believing. It was too well orchestrated to be a spontaneous act.

As you say, there can be little, if any, doubt Brian Kennedy was the one who engaged the services of the dubious private detective collective, ostensibly briefed to 'search' for Madeleine McCann.

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Post by Verdi on 28.09.20 13:09

Time to move on to the next phase of team McCanns private detectives, hired by their wealthy benefactor - Brian Kennedy.

Not to say the subject of Metodo3 has been exhausted, all matters connected with the case of Madeleine McCann's disappearance are open ended until such times as the case is satisfactorily solved.

Enter Oakley International, fronted by the elusive Bondesque character - Kevin Halligan, just one of his pseudonyms it would appear.

To launch the introduction of Oakley International, what better than another example of our Tony Bennett's extensive research on the subject of the McCanns hired private detectives.

Take it away Tony Bennett..



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Post by Verdi on 28.09.20 13:16

A LOOK AT KEVIN HALLIGEN AND ALL HIS HIGH LEVEL CONNECTIONS

By Tony Bennett: September 2015 - Updated by the MMRG in May 2019

I’ve been approached recently by one of the mainstream media who are preparing a documentary on Kevin Halligen. They asked me for all my notes on him and I’ve supplied them. In the course of doing so, I’ve in turn been supplied with new material about him which I’ve recorded below. Some of this overlaps with material I put on the forum some time ago here:

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A search of topics for ‘Halligen’ on CMOMM brings up 31 other threads about him.

How far this mainstream media company will go in probing the subject of ‘Kevin Halligen and the McCanns’ is doubtful. The only programme to do so until now, ‘The McCanns and the Con-Man’, Channel 5, in 2014, managed the unlikely feat of portraying Halligen and his sidekick Henri Exton as having got nearer than anyone else to solving this case - by producing those two controversial e-fits, claimed to have been based on the recollections of the Smith family:

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As always, the prime question about Halligen is: why did the McCann Team appoint a man with this background to front the search for a missing child?

New points of special interest in red.

Oakley International - Employed by the McCann Team in 2008 to find Madeleine


In early 2008, Oakley Strategic Services LLC was formed. The owner was a man by the name of Colonel Ken Irish III. Halligen was involved as a Director, but not a shareholder, in the company, after it was formed. Colonel Ken Irish III was killed in an accident in Virginia in August 2011.

In 2008 (that is, after Madeleine McCann was reported missing), the company was one of several national security specialists to contribute to a workshop entitled, ‘Shariah Law and Financial Jihad: How Should America Respond?’ The workshop was co-sponsored by The McCormick Foundation and The Center for Security Policy. Nickolas Abramo (their Director of Operations) and Ken Irish III also worked on the issue of the risks and dangers posed by ‘Shariah-Compliant Finance’ and the indirect impact the phenomenon might have on human rights.

A security services source is clear that Halligen’s Oakley International, set up soon after Oakley Strategic Services, was specifically set up in readiness to be appointed as the lead investigators in the Madeleine McCann case in April 2008. The same source is clear that Halligen had a long history of setting up ‘front’ companies.

The career of Kevin Halligen

It is clear from this that when, in August 2008, Clarence Mitchell boasted of how the Madeleine McCann investigation was in the hands of ‘the big boys of international private detection’, he was lying with as many teeth as he has in his mouth.

My source seems to know a great deal about Halligen’s employment history, or perhaps I should say his history of Directorships and setting up ‘front’ companies. Here is the list he gives:

1. AEA Technology (1997-1999)
2. then Cap Gemini Ernst and Young (1999-2002)
3. then The Inkerman Group (2002-3).
And during that time he set up:
4. SOE International, with Major-General John Holmes (former Director of Special Forces) and Nicola Heath (Terror Psychology Advisor), and
5. The Chimera Partnership with Tim Craig-Harvey (who we see as Halligen’s partner again, working for Oakley International and who appeared in the 2014 TV show: ‘The McCanns and the Con-Man) and Natasha Duval
After all that, he set up
6. Red Defence International.

That’s a significant number of companies and some very important, well-placed people he has hooked up with, in a short space of time

My source refers to the well-known article by Mark Hollingsworth in the Evening Standard, 24 August 2009, in which Kevin Halligen is portrayed as a ‘con-man, ‘serial fraudster’ and ‘fantasist’.

This is the source’s comment on that article:

"The chronology and the choice of events from Halligen's employment history [in the Evening Standard article] served to support the story of a 'con-man' and a 'fantasist'. It made his actions appear impetuous, almost random, the actions of a man surviving on his wits and scuttling from one scam to another, acting impulsively, acting alone…[but] The real chronology (above) challenges that belief. Looking over documents filed at Companies House, a different character emerges and a different chain of command emerges too. There are greater forces involved, more interested parties…Halligen has spent much of his prior career in the fields of private security and defence, precariously enmeshed in lucrative projects for the Ministry of Defence and the US Department of Defense”.

My source then adds this:

“In the early 1990s, Halligen is already employed by DSB Special Batteries Ltd, based in Crawley, West Sussex. It manufactured and marketed battery packs and rechargers for the military, industrial and commercial markets in the United Kingdom. From 24 to 26 April 1995 he represented DBS at the International Power Sources Symposium at the Brighton Thistle Hotel, Brighton.

“In 1997, the company was taken over by AEA Technology Systems. Halligen began research and development on Lithium-Ion batteries. AEA Technology later won contracts with the Ministry of Defence (providing batteries for the Army's Bowman Battlefield System and French Military thermal imaging cameras), the US Departments of Homeland Security and Defense [unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs] and NASA (contracts for the Mars Landing Mission in 2003 and the first Comet Landing Mission.

“Justin Staines and Steve Boyes (of Northrop and Nexeon Limited) would have worked with Halligen at this time. ABSL Space Products (formerly Halligen’s employer AEA Technology Space) was later under direct contract from QinetiQ to supply rechargeable Lithium-Ion batteries”.

In the summer of 2002. Halligen and Major-General John Holmes (ex Director of Special Forces) were recruited by Gerald Moore and Sir John Walker of Inkerman Group specifically for the Minerva Programme (anti-terrorist, emergency response project performed in association with QinetiQ, the UK Government Defence Agency). They both appear on the July annual returns form as Directors. Holmes seems to have resigned abruptly in January 2003, after little more than 6 months at Inkerman, to work on ‘Project Unicorn’ for the Metropolitan Police with Nicola Heath and Paul Cardew. Halligen resigned form Inkerman on 31 August 2003.

The Wikipedia entry on John Holmes tells us this:

“Holmes was born in 1949) and is is a former SAS commander. He joined the SAS in 1974. He subsequently followed a Special Forces career and in turn commanded an SAS Squadron, served as the Special Operations Liaison Officer at the British Embassy in Washington DC, ran the Special Forces Policy Desk in the Ministry of Defence and commanded 22 SAS from 1989 to 1992. He was subsequently given accelerated promotion to Brigadier and command of the Airborne Brigade for three years. He then served at SHAPE [Supreme Headquarters, Allied Powers in Europe]…returning to the UK in 1999 as Director of Special…In 2002 he left and worked for Inkerman, a high profile UK-based security and risk management company.

“During 2003 he completed two main projects – Project Unicorn, for the Metropolitan Police and UK Government into commercial sector activity in London - to aid the counter-terrorism effort. The second was providing security consultancy advice to Erinys Internationa, a British-owned security company that won the multi-million pound contract to secure the Iraqi Oil infrastructure. He was a Director of Erinys 2004-2008.

Later, Halligen became Company Secretary of Jungor Thames Valley Ltd, a company is owned by Linda 'O Connell, operating from the handsome and extensive grounds of Stanennor, Westwood Lane, Normandy, GUILDFORD, GU3 2JE. The company provides catering equipment, marquees and furniture for events. Halligen had no shares in the company and was not a Director. The home address Halligen provided at that time was Stable Cottage, Thursley Road, Elstead. The cottage is just 30 minutes drive from Cap Gemini headquarters in Woking and is within yards of the MOD and British Army's Longmoor Training Estate on Elstead and Hankley Common.

Kevin Halligen, Major-General John Holmes, Tim-Craig-Harvey and Natasha Duval

In this section I explore the connections between Kevin Halligen and three of his close associates: Major-General John Holmes, Tim Craig-Harvey and Natasha Duval.

On 27 August 2003, a few days before Halligen resigned from Inkerman, Tim Craig-Harvey (still working at Inkerman), Natasha Duval and Kevin Halligen registered The Chimera Partnership at Companies House. They used an address for registration used by General Major John Holmes on his SOE application, namely 15, St Botolph Street, LONDON.

In February or March 2004, Halligen was clearly regarded very highly because he was given a U.S. Department of Defense security pass – and those are not handed out every day.

No more than a few weeks later, on 5 April 2004, Halligen, Major-General John Holmes and Nicola Heath (the latter two having worked on Project Unicorn for the Met) set up SOE International, registration No. 5094037 at Companies House. It was given a ‘Non-Trading’ status.

According to the incorporation file, Kevin Halligen and Mayor-General John Holmes used Inkerman's 1 Cornhill Head Office address as their contact address, while Tim Craig-Harvey aalso used the Inkerman Cornhill address when registering the Red Defence website.

My source notes: “Why both Halligen and Holmes are still using the Inkerman office address during this time isn't clear, especially when several parties allege that Halligen's departure from Inkerman was so emphatic and acrimonious”.

On 30 July 2004 Tim Craig-Harvey, Natasha Duval and Halligen set up Red Defence Ltd at Companies House (Company No. 05193728). It remained a dormant company for much of its lifetime - see the 363s annual return, July 2005. It was Tim Craig-Harvey who featured in the 2014 TV documentary ‘The McCanns and the Con-Man’.

On 19 August 2004, Nicola Heath and Major-General John Holmes set up SOE Academy Ltd (Company No. 5210093).

And then Halligen and Tim Craig-Harvey, on 17 March 2005, registered Red Defence International Ltd (Company No. 05396823) – a different company from ‘Red Defence’. Again it is Tim Craig-Harvey who serves as Company Secretary and Director.

Developments in 2007 and later

Sometime between December 2007 and February 2008, Andre Hollis (Vice President of Van Sycoyoc and regular Fox News commentator), Tim Unruh (from Patton Boggs) and probably Colonel John Garrett (also from Patton Boggs) set up Oakley International Group LLC, with Halligen also being involved.

Hoovers says the initial date of registration was 12th February 2008. It was set up as a Foreign Limited Liability Company, apparently trading in defence, aeronautical search and navigation systems and equipment.

Extraordinarily, Oakley International Group, sometime between February and April 2008, were awarded a 6-month contract worth £½ million plus expenses, ostensibly to try to find out what happened to Madeleine McCann.

It was about this time – March 2008 – that the government-funded Forensic Science Service, based in Birmingham, were preparing their final report on the forensics for the McCann investigation.

It is of no little interest, therefore, that in the same month (March 2008) Halligen’s partners at Oakley International, Andre Hollis and the Van Scoyoc company, were actually lobbying the US Senate on behalf of the Forensic Science Services in the UK.

Not only that, but one of the Senators they met with was Richard C Shelby, the very Senator that Gerry McCann met in Washington some 9 months before. The Shelby election campaign was robustly supported by QinetiQ North America and by law firm Patton Boggs.

As a return on this support, Shelby awarded QinetiQ North America a contract worth $8,000,000 [£½ million] to provide work on behalf of the US Army Aviation and Missile, Research, Development and Engineering Center.

And then in April 2008, Halligen's partner, Andre Hollis (also the Chief Executive Officer of Oakley International Group LLC), lobbied the House of Representatives and the US Senate on behalf of Oakley Strategic Services LLC, in a bid to win contracts with the US Department of Defense. The company spent $20,000 and then £5,000 during the period March - April 2008 on issues relating to strategic training and consulting services.

April 2008, Andre Hollis left Van Sycoyoc and was appointed Head of Due Dilgence at Tiger International. He remained there until April 2010. He now works for the Center for Advanced Defense Studies in Washington DC.


Interestingly, former QinetiQ Managing Director, Simon Bennett, took over the Forensic Science Services at this time to prepare it for privatisation.

Tim Craig-Harvey, Halligen's partner at Red Defence, later became a partner in The CHS Partnership LLP and Vigil Ltd.


The founder of both companies was Nicholas Strachwitz-Hamilton of The HBS Group. Craig-Harvey's new companies were involved in sourcing commodities like oil, diamonds, gold and sugar to and from South and Central America – and also procure and dispose of high value assets in Europe and the Middle East.

Later, in November 2009, Tim Craig-Harvey was appointed a Director at Heropreneurs, which Founder Sophie Sharpe described as ‘an innovation in venture philanthropy’. Inter alia, it was the UK’s first ‘social venture fund’ to support veterans of the Armed Forces community to start-up in business.

Sophie Sharpe was responsible for spearheading the fund-raising behind Boris Johnson’s Mayoral Campaign in 2007-08. The Patron of the company is of the company is Colonel Tim Collins of Iraq war fame.

Heropreneurs’ Co-Founder, Richard Morris, is a former journalist who has written for the Sunday Times, Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, the New Yorker and the Independent.

Halligen’s Russian connections

Halligen's business partner, Major-General John Holmes was very much a part of the Boris Berezovsky and Alexander Litvinenko circle of Russian billionaires and anti-Putin exiles.

The London Evening Standard - which ran Hollingsworth's story on Kevin Halligen back in August 2009 – had been bought earlier that year by Russian Alexander Lebedev in February 2009. His Russian newspaper, Yuri Shchekochikhin, had published Litvinenko’s claims in 2001 that Russian security services were behind a series of apartment bombings in 1999 that were blamed on Chechen separatists. Anna Politkovskaya, who was murdered in 2006, was a regular columnist in that
newspaper.This report appeared in 2010:

MADELEINE FUND FRAUD ACCUSED'S COURT BID; IRISHMAN FIGHTING EXTRADITION TO US

BY A MIRROR REPORTER

"AN Irishman accused of conning EUR343,000 [it was more like double that - over £½ million – T.B.] from the Madeleine McCann Fund will fight extradition to the United States in connection with a separate alleged fraud, a court heard yesterday.

“Kevin Halligen, 48, is wanted in the US over a EUR1.4million scam after allegedly ripping off an oil company. Last November, Halligen was led away in handcuffs from the Old Bank Hotel in Oxford where he had been staying with his girlfriend under a false name. He is suspected of swindling the Maddie fund after claiming he could use satellite technology to help find the missing girl, although allegations relating to the McCanns are not before the court.

“Further reports since his arrest have claimed Halligen tried to squeeze another EUR189,000 out of the fund after he was sacked by the McCanns when they grew suspicious of his credibility. Halligen, who appeared by videolink at a brief hearing at City of Westminster Magistrates Court in central London yesterday, was remanded in custody for a further three weeks until Friday, February 26 when a short hearing will take place ahead of a full extradition hearing on an unspecified date”.

More interesting connections

It may be of interest that Halligen was initially represented in the extradition proceedings by Mark Summers of the barristers’ chamber Matrix - where he was a colleague of Cherie Blair, wife of former Prime Minister Tony Blair, and Founder of Matrix Chambers. Summers was the lawyer of choice for politically sensitive cases and complex cross-border and jurisdictional issues.

Summers worked closely with one of Halligen’s business partners, John Taylor. They worked together as advisors in the aftermath of the 2001 US Anthrax Bioterrorism Attacks and the extradition of Pentagon hacker, Gary McKinnon - in which Summers was representing the interests of the United States Department of Defense. According to his online C.V., Summer’s biggest cases have included:

The Madrid train bombings,

the 9/11 attacks,

the 'Fertiliser Bomb’ plot,

the collapse of Enron,

the $31million US 'Ponzi scheme' of advance fee fraud,

the murder of Theo van Gogh (allegedly carried out by the by the Amsterdam/Moroccan Hofstaad Network),

KGB espionage in the former Soviet bloc,

the Trojan Horse computer virus,

the Stansted Airport Afghan Airlines hijacking,

the failed 21/7 London bombing attempts, and

defending Younes Tsouli, the Moroccan-born resident of the UK widely credited with being Al-Qa'eda's 'cyber-Muhajid'.

His trials also include cases of human trafficking and child abduction. Several of the people Summers has represented have died in mysterious circumstances.

It may be significant that it was the same Mark Summers of Matrix Chambers who, together with Solicitor Louis Charalambous, helped to secure the £600,000 compensation deal for deal for one-time Maddie suspect, Robert Murat. Charalambous and a team from Matrix Clambers were said to have conducted a 'forensic exercise' to identify the principal offenders who allegedly libeled Murat and came up with a list of more than 100 of the most damaging articles.

Kevin Halligen was later legally represented in his extradition proceedings by Carter Moore, a Manchester-based law firm. The man representing Halligen was Jeremy Moore, Managing Partner and Head of the company's criminal defence team. Jeremy Moore also acted for Barry George, wrongly convicted of the murder of Jill Dando, in his successful appeal proceedings and subsequently on his retrial - where he was acquitted after spending 8 years in jail.

It was of course Clarence Mitchell who was was the first news man on the scene after the Dando murder. And it was Detective Superintendent Andy Tattersall, together with the Investigating Officer in the case, Detective Chief Inspector Hamish Campbell, who first identified Barry George as Dando's killer.

Tattersall was later was brought in with Halligen and Exton to help with the Madeleine investigation, whilst Hamish Campbell was later to be appointed as the boss of Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood when Operation Grange was set up on the orders of Rebekah Brooks in May 2011.

For Tattersall and Campbell to have bungled – some say deliberately – the Barry George prosecution to have both been brought in to ‘help’ in the Madeleine McCann investigation seems way beyond coincidence.

Another remarkable coincidence is that Det Supt Andy Tattersall was interviewed by Jill Dando herself on her debut on BBC Crimewatch.

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Post by Verdi on 28.09.20 16:05

Interesting to note .... Dr Richard Parton, the self acclaimed freelance voice analysis head hunted by Kevin Halligan to assist the search, featured in 'The McCanns and the Conman' film and the Netflix Madeleine McCann documentary.

Here is an enlightening prospective from the internet crimewatch team, Oxygen.  Some interesting snippets, aside from the named persons - I'm more and more inclinded to believe the latest 'prime suspect' of German origin has been engineered by key players from the Netflix series.  Curiously partly narrated and featuring heavily one Julian Peribañez - the shamed (to use the vernacular) detective from Metodo3 private detective agency.

Who Was Kevin Halligen And How Did He Scam Madeleine McCann's Family?

Netflix's "The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann" talks about self-described spy Kevin Halligen, who did plenty of damage to the missing girl's case.

By Jill Sederstrom - 18th March 2019

In the months after 3-year-old Madeleine McCann vanished from her room on a family trip to Praia da Luz, Portugal, her parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, were desperately searching for answers. But a year after the May 2007 disappearance, authorities in Portugal announced they were stopping their investigation without any new leads.

As shown in Netflix's new docu-series"The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann," the parents eventually trusted a man named Kevin Halligen to help them find their missing daughter — but this would prove to be a tragic mistake, costing the search effort both time and money without any significant progress made in the case. So who was Halligen, and what exactly happened there?

After the local authorities announced they were archiving the case in 2008, the family, as well as tycoon Brian Kennedy who helped fund the search for the missing girl, were frustrated. Not just with the authorities, but also with the private investigation firm they had hired to aid in the search.

“There comes a point where you decide, 'Let’s up the game a bit, let’s try and bring in someone else who is going to approach this from a different angle,'” Kennedy’s son, Patrick Kennedy, said in “The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann.”

In 2008, they turned to Oakley International, an investigation firm in the United States described by investigative journalist Robbyn Swan as one of the “big boys” in investigations.

“They were promised all sorts of things, that the people working for Oakley were former FBI, CIA, and MI6, that they had the latest in investigative tools, techniques, technology available to them. They could do all sorts of things that Metodo 3, their previous investigators, could not do,” she said in the documentary.

Richard Parton, a freelance voice analyst who was hired by Oakley International to aid in the search effort, said at the time Halligen was a respected member of the industry.

“Kevin had access to a dream team that would impress the daylights out of you, top in their field,” he said in the documentary. “They had skills.”

The team hit the ground running, setting up a special hotline to receive tips in the case and tracking down an Irish man and his family who had allegedly witnessed a man carrying a little girl wearing pajamas near the apartment where McCann had vanished that night.

Swan said that by using a sketch artist, the firm was able to create two sketches of the man and circulate it throughout the media. The sketch and other witness information was used to comb the area and identify other potential suspects, including a man who lived in a van in the area.

“I do remember that Kevin was mentioning they were tracking a van,” Parton said.

But as the investigation continued, Kennedy, who was funding the search effort at the time, began to hear unusual rumors about the investigation that left him concerned.

“Kevin did what he usually does and he throws out juicy tidbits and things that would inspire hope,” Parton said, adding that he reportedly claimed to have access to satellite photos of Portugal the night Madeleine went missing that could reveal the truth behind what happened to the missing girl.

But the photos turned out to be nothing more than images from Google Maps.

Parton said Halligen was making claims that “just didn’t make sense” to the investigations team as well. At one point, Parton said Halligen claimed he had sent a man and women team into Praia da Luz with a child similar to Madeleine’s age to act as “bait.” On another occasion he claimed to have an undercover priest working with investigators.

“There’s very little evidence that he did what he said he did,” Parton said. “Kevin’s only effort was to create a report that indicated they did something.”

Parton also noticed that stories about Halligen’s relationships and backgrounds were not consistent and, despite a vast number of people vouching for the investigative expert, “nothing was matching up.”

Kennedy was receiving troubling reports as well from people linked to the investigation who weren’t being paid.

Halligen had allegedly started threatening to expose information about the McCann family. It was also discovered that the tips coming into the tip line had never been answered or followed up on.

Halligen fled to Rome when it was discovered that he was allegedly a fraud.

“He was really an Irishman who had been largely masquerading as an investigator,” Swan said. “He had made friends with the Washington elite, was living the high life off the back of what seemed to be the money for the search for Madeleine.”

The family was left devastated that no real progress had been made, even as the days since their daughter had vanished continued to tick by.

Before his 2018 death of a brain hemorrhage, Halligen would deny the claims he had used the money improperly in a 2014 documentary by Adrian Gatton.

He called the allegations a “gross distortion of what was actually happening,” according to the BBC.

"The print media in particular took this line that really nothing was being done; I was living the high life on the proceeds of the McCann case,” he said in the documentary. "Trust me, I didn't so much as buy a new suit... The money, all of it, is fully accountable. It's provable."

But Halligen would plead guilty in the United States in another fraud case.

He was accused of contracting with Trafigura, a Netherlands company who requested his help to free two executives who had been arrested on the Ivory Coast, and then using the money for his own benefit without working to secure their release.

The company had paid Halligen millions in less than a year, according to the Washington Post. At one point, prosecutors said he took a $2.1 million payment and then purchased a $1.6 million house the very next day.

“The victim in this case was in­cred­ibly vulnerable, a fact that the defendant capitalized on,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Maia Miller said at the sentencing hearing. “This company was in a highly vulnerable state and would have spent anything.”

He was sentenced to 41 months in prison, but was credited for 43 months he had already served and was quickly ordered to leave the United States, reported The Washington Post.

His alleged deceptions even extended to his personal life. Halligen, who was already married, allegedly fell in love with an American attorney and held a lavish wedding ceremony, complete with 100 guests and a lobster dinner.

But the man officiating the ceremony was no minister and instead a hired actor, according to The Post, and Halligen told the women he had pretended to marry that the reason they couldn’t sign any official paperwork was because he was a spy.

The 56-year-old met a disturbing end in 2018, when his body was discovered in his home after he had reportedly suffered from a brain hemorrhage.

“My understanding is that he was found dead on Monday night. There was blood around the house, probably caused by previous falls when he was either drunk or blackening out,” Gatton told the press at the time, according to the Independent. “Halligen was increasingly shambolic and these blood stains hadn’t been cleared up.”

Gatton said in Halligen’s final days he was overcome by an alcohol addiction and his home was full of “empty drink bottles.”

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The McCanns Private Detectives - Page 2 Empty Re: The McCanns Private Detectives

Post by Verdi on 16.12.20 1:02

Transcript: The McCanns and the Conman Channel 5 - 04 June 2014

Narrator: In 2007, three-year-old Madeleine McCann went missing whilst on holiday with her parents in Portugal.

Gerry McCann (from archive footage): Whilst it's heartbreaking to return to the UK without Madeleine, it does not mean we’re giving up our search for her.

Narrator: The case touched the heart of the nation and the public dug into their pockets to help find Madeleine. A year after her disappearance, a security consultant was hired to solve the case.

Harry Winter: The gentleman was the Jack Bauer of our time; the actual Jack Bauer.

Narrator: But he turned out to be one of the biggest conmen in history.

James R Conner III: I've been working fraud for almost 20 years in the FBI. I’ve never met anybody who has fooled as many distinguished, capable, educated people. He's a very good conman.

Narrator: Tonight he comes out of the shadows for the very first time.

Halligen: Some would say “Well, why not just put a 9mm in the back of his head?”

Narrator: This is the story of what happened when a fake spy took on the biggest missing child case in history.

John Taylor: He had a wife; he had girlfriends; he had limousines, fancy rooms in the best hotels.

Narrator: It's a tail of bugging, surveillance, undercover operations and your missing money.

Halligen: The money - all of it - is fully accountable.

Narrator: Almost a year after Madeleine McCann's disappearance, her parents, Kate and Gerry, had a secret meeting with the man who said he could help find their missing child. With the Portuguese police focusing on them as suspects Kate and Gerry were desperate to find someone to search for Madeleine. They placed their hope in Kevin Halligen, a security specialist with extra ordinary global connections. Halligen’s London business partner, Major Tim Craig-Harvey, would become a member of the investigation team.

Tim Craig-Harvey: It's not a contract that was entered into lightly by any stretch of the imagination, and there were others in the industry who had turned down the opportunity. Whilst we may be able to find out what happened, actually finding Madeleine McCann, which was clearly the main aim of any investigation, is going to be difficult.

Narrator: These people didn't come cheap but the McCann's had access to the “Find Madeleine” fund with a million pounds of donations raised by the public. Publicly the McCanns attended a remembrance service for their daughter but behind the scenes Halligen’s six-month contract had been signed off. On top of his $1,000,000 fee, he was promised up to half a million dollars if Madeleine was found alive.

Tim Craig-Harvey: The McCanns were having the most horrific time. Kate McCann in particular looked absolutely battered by the events of the last year. As a parent I cannot imagine the horror and the grief that they must have gone through. And to have been accused of killing their own daughter - that's pretty grim. Gerry was very good at putting a brave face on it, but they wanted results.

Narrator: Halligen was warned that the fees that had been agreed to could wipe out the fund, but Kate and Gerry had been given every reason to have faith. Kevin Halligen came with an impressive CV.

Tim Craig-Harvey: Kevin went out to Iraq a couple of times. It was real sort of boys own stuff: getting out amongst there with the bad guys; looking over your shoulder; dodging behind blown up walls. He'd come back and say “I've been in Baghdad. It was dangerous. I survived, and I've got photos to prove it. Do you want to see them?”

Narrator: Halligen’s firms had worked on high profile cases before and had recently been involved in the rescue of two oil executives held in the Ivory Coast. He took $12million in fees, fees that allowed him to expand his security business and open plush offices in Washington DC.

John Taylor: Kevin arrived on the scene in Washington at a very interesting time. Everybody was looking for new technologies; they were looking for ways to address the terrorism issue. He arrived with all the answers.

Narrator: By the time he was hired to find Madeleine, Halligen had already made a big impression in DC. He displayed all the trappings of power and wealth. As well as his high status offices, he had four homes and two chauffeurs, travelled first class, and stayed in 5 star hotels.

John Taylor: A spy gentleman who's connected with the intelligence agencies in England and he has ties to the vice president’s office of the United States.

Narrator: A year previously he'd also hosted the White House great and the good at his lavish million dollar wedding to a respected Washington lawyer.

Harry Winter: I was told that the gentleman was the Jack Bauer of our time; the actual Jack Bauer. This was someone who was about to go out and save the world, yet again this week.

Narrator: Halligen intimated that he would make full use of his highly-placed DC connections in the search for Madeleine. He would use the fund’s money in a plan that was like something out of a spy movie: covert ops, satellite imagery, surveillance, voice analysis, profiling and deep background checks. Risky if caught red handed as it was illegal to carry out a private investigation when the Portuguese police were trying to solve the case themselves.

Narrator: The investigation was codenamed Operation Omega. The ground op would be run by Henri Exton, former head of undercover operations at MI5.

Henri Exton: All conventional investigative methods had been tried and hit a brick wall. He knew that I was an expert in non-conventional investigative methodology and felt I could bring something to the table.

Narrator: Henry Exton set about pulling together a team of hand picked, highly trained operatives.

Henri Exton: Everything operational, I was responsible for, and everything technical, Halligen was responsible for. His side was the undertaking of the technical elements to it.

Tim Craig-Harvey: Something that the trust and the family found very enticing was the promise of the use of technical means - satellite imagery - and Kevin can provide this extraordinary means of finding missing people. Were there shots taken on the night of the abduction?

Narrator: This promise helped clinch the deal and the “Find Madeleine Fund” agreed to pay him up to $1,000,000. A cornerstone of Halligen’s plan was an appeal campaign to encourage potential witnesses to come forward. With the plan signed off, the Madeleine hotline went live on the 30th of April, 2008.

Tim Craig-Harvey: We had over 500 calls and emails, some more credible than others, and we were touching on some pretty murky areas. Convicted paedophiles called in saying they knew who had taken her.

Narrator: The team focused on two key efits, including the iconic sighting by the McCanns’ friend, Jane Tanner.

Tim Craig-Harvey: What really helped us were the images that had been created of this figure supposedly carrying a child away and this really sparked people's memories. And then there was a full face drawing of a potential suspect who we knew as “George” because he bore a vague resemblance to George Harrison.

Narrator: The day after the appeal launched, the team had their first breakthrough. A key witness phoned. Gary Williams, an IT worker in the city, had been on holiday in the Algarve.

Gary Williams: I saw the efit and immediately I was pretty sure that I would recognise this person as the person I saw in our bar in the apartments that day. I rang the Madeleine line. We went through what I'd seen. They did the efit. He had long hair with a moustache. He just stood out; he just looked odd.

Narrator: This was the efit that Gary Williams produced. It was a major breakthrough for the publicly funded investigation. Was this the face of the man who’d abducted Madeleine McCann?

Narrator: One year after the disappearance of Madeleine, the Find Madeleine Fund hired security specialist Kevin Halligen. Just weeks into the case the $1,000,000 publicly funded investigation to find her had a breakthrough. Covert operatives had been deployed to Praia da Luz and they had a prime suspect in their sights.

Tim Craig-Harvey: We needed to have an understanding of what the area was like because that would clearly help us identify useful information.

Narrator: Situation reports were sent daily to Kevin Halligen from operatives on the ground.

Tim Craig-Harvey: They were taking footage of the area and talking to people to get a feel of who knew what or who might be hiding information.

Operative: Report sent 11:30 hours Thursday 1st of May. There's an almost sombre atmosphere, and a distinct lack of families or any type of guests around the resort. I have managed to get a room in the block next to the interest and in fact I'm probably no more than 15 yards away from their apartment.

Narrator: As far as the McCanns and the fund were aware, there were 42 specialists working on the case across several countries, including a team of analysts in DC.

John Taylor: There were some undercover people, there were some people working inside the hotel, and there were also people doing interviews, and so there were multiple investigations going on. From our perspective we were doing just this one little piece of it.

Narrator: Armed with the efit, undercover operatives embedded themselves in the community, looking for anyone who might have information. One of the first people covertly interviewed was Andy, a homeless British expat who knew the seedier side of Praia da Luz.

Operative: I saw him early afternoon in the church area and eventually found him again in a sort of shopping precinct near The Bull's Head bar.

Andy: Madeleine? Who's Madeleine? I didn't even hear of her. I didn't read newspapers or watch television cause I'd been travelling a lot and I got here and I ... now I know it’s …. We call it in this town it's “Madeleine country”. Everyone is paranoid in this town that I'm going to get the blame; I'm going to get the blame; they're going to point the finger at me or someone like me.

Narrator: Everyone was secretly photographed, recorded and videoed. These would then be sent to Halligen’s specialists in DC for assessment and future tasking.

Andy: There’s no eyes on me, basically. I'm just a man with two dogs. No one's watching me, that's for sure.

Narrator: Andy's friend, nicknamed by the investigators “The Secret Cardinal”, also came under surveillance. He claimed to know what happened to Madeleine. That made him a priority target.

Operative: He's surprisingly bright, speaks excellent English, and talks in absolute riddles. He says he's in Praia da Luz to seek out evil, and he knows there's a lot of it about. He hints that he's the secret cardinal sent by the Pope to find the evil involved in the little girl’s abduction. He says he's sure she's dead and he knows who has done it. He refuses to say who it is because he'll never get out of Portugal alive. I do have the feeling that he's involved in this whole thing.

Andy: If you don't know him, you think he's a bit of a weirdo. But he's not. He got the blame for little Madeleine. I know it's not him.

Narrator: In DC, John Taylor listened to the tape of The Secret Cardinal. In his opinion, investing more resources on him was wasting valuable time and the fund’s money.

John Taylor: There's two sides to the issue with The Secret Cardinal. On the one hand, any bit of information, especially when someone is telling you that they have answers, you have to take that information and document it. But if you realise that someone is delusional, they're unreliable, or they have maybe a mental issue that they're trying to get themselves pulled into the case or get attention for themselves, you have also a responsibility to realise that, compartmentalize, and move on to more legitimate investigative subjects.

Narrator: It was now 5 weeks into the investigation. Halligen had already been paid $220,000 but as the operation shifted up a gear, he was pressing the fund for another half a million. He maintained the operation was costly.

Tim Craig-Harvey: There's a team of guys on the ground who clearly are experienced in conducting surveillance and gathering information. These are professionals. They have a photograph of Madeleine from a year ago and they also have the image of George and the efit that had been provided for us. And their role is twofold: find the child; find George.

Narrator: Intel suggested George was a gypsy and Madeleine may have been kidnapped. They began searching for George among the local Roma community.

Tim Craig-Harvey: The team goes to all these markets and they have to, in as subtle a manner as possible, look at every small child with vaguely blonde hair. So any child that is hanging out with a group of Roma is going to stand out. They’re trying to identify whether there is a child in a strange group, where there's a child behaving strangely, and also whether they can find this guy George. And clearly a lot of this information can be discounted straight away if you can go “That's not her.” or “That doesn't bare enough resemblance to the potential abductor.” And it's the sort of situation whereby you know when you've got the right image. So if someone had taken a photograph of Madeleine McCann at one of these gypsy fairs, we would have looked at it and known, or her parents would have looked at it and known.

Narrator: At the market in Estói, the undercover team found the first close match to the efit, but after careful scrutiny London rejected him. On Monday the 9th of June 2008, there was a breakthrough at Algoz market at around noon.

Tim Craig-Harvey: It was extraordinary that after about 4 days, the team identified someone who bore a striking resemblance to one of the e-fit pictures. The team sent the image back to us and it did indeed look very similar to the character George.

Operative: At about 13:20 hours, man B loaded the bag from his stall into a silver Opel Vivaro van.

Narrator: Believing their target was a possible match, the team followed him.

Tim Craig-Harvey: Clearly there was a desire to house (?) him and find out where he lived, to find out whether he had a permanent base. It was very exciting because we’d been following a line of enquiry and it appears as though we've been following the right line of enquiry.

Operative: Man B stopped in the town of Algoz and used the phone box at 14:36 hours. The telephone number of the phone box was 282 574 970. The vehicle proceeded south towards Albufeira and then proceeded on the N125 towards Faro. He then turned left along the dirt track.

Tim Craig-Harvey: His ability to drive quickly and down strange roads meant that really it was very difficult to keep any kind of tabs on him.

Operative: He then reversed into another dirt track and stopped. He was not seen to leave the vehicle. Surveillance was unsighted and unable to contain the vehicle. As a result, the vehicle was lost at about 14:55 hours.

Narrator: Had a chance to find Madeleine McCann slipped away?

Tim Craig-Harvey: A couple of days later he's then seen at another market and one of the team has the wherewithal to go to this guy's stall - he's selling cotton bags - and he buys one of these bags and bags it up immediately in a plastic bag.

Operative: We approached George and purchased a bag from the stall. This will now be logged as exhibit SR1

Tim Craig-Harvey: So we've got photographic evidence, video evidence, and here is a bag that he handled and has his fingerprints on. Now that we have a photograph of the potential abductor, there is clearly a desire to show this to those who have helped In the efit process to see if they recognise him.

Gary Williams: They contacted me and said that they had got some pictures they wanted to show me, and a video. So they came back to the house and showed that to me but it wasn't anybody that I'd seen before. It wasn't the person I saw in the bar that day.

Narrator: The public has never been told how the investigation was conducted but the files reveal that one of the key witnesses was secretly recorded - Jane Tanner, the woman who had seen a man carrying a child away on the night of the 3rd of May.

Tim Craig-Harvey: We had a device in the room which would pick up what she was saying, and then that conversation was recorded in another room.

Narrator: Kevin Halligen and a colleague conducted the interview. They began by checking details of one of her witness statements.

(Recording of Tanner Interview)

Tim Craig-Harvey: She was then presented with a photograph of this guy George in the market at which point she broke down and said “That is the guy that I saw carrying the child”. This was a pretty strong indication that the guy who had been seen in Portugal, had an integral role in the disappearance of Madeleine. It was extraordinary to be in the room next door on my own, listening to the conversation, and to be part of her reaction.

Narrator: In the search for Madeleine this was possibly the biggest breakthrough anyone had made. …… But when voice analyst Richard Parton heard the recording, doubts crept in.

Richard Parton: Everyone wants to find this guy - don't get me wrong. Everyone wants to find him, but the more she had to describe him, the more inaccurate she became. From the witness statements I had processed before, there was nothing indicating that he was involved - nothing at all. I think the most exciting thing about finding him was that we could finally rule it out.

Narrator: Despite the serious doubts, the files revealed surveillance was continued on the market trader for the next three months, but he was eventually eliminated from all enquiries.

Tim Craig-Harvey: My understanding is that it was felt that she wasn't as credible a witness as we had hoped. Witnesses will give evidence thinking that that is what they saw or understood at the time which is quite often inaccurate. And so Jane Tanner having said “This is the guy that I saw”, it may just have been that she so wanted to help that she fooled herself.

Narrator: But Jane Tanner’s secret recording did reveal something unexpected. It seeded doubts about Kevin Halligen’s credentials to lead the investigation.

Richard Parton: I actually caught Kevin's voice on tape and also happened to catch him in action. I learned remarkable things about him. And not only did he have no skillsets, he was out of his depth, and honestly, for this person, that should not have been the case.

Narrator: Kevin Halligen’s team was halfway through the publicly funded investigation into Madeleine's disappearance. Questions about Halligens suitability to lead the investigation were emerging and divisions were opening up between him and the team.

Henri Exton: He didn't have contact with the sensitive operational side and the team on the ground didn't trust him. They didn't want to be in his company because he was a drunk and he bounced cheques on them. While the team was in Praia da Luz, Halligen spent most of his time in DC trying to persuade people to engage him.

Narrator: But despite this, the team continued to make every effort to find Madeleine. They investigated a second sighting of a potential abductor on the night she went missing - a person seen carrying a child towards the beach. While the publicly-funded investigation continued, the Portuguese police investigation was coming to an end. On the 21st of July 2008, the Portuguese police dropped the case against Gerry and Kate McCann and released 30,000 pages of files.

Kate McCann (from archive footage): We welcome the news today, although it is no cause for celebration. It's hard to describe how utterly kit was to be named arguido and subsequently portrayed in the media as suspects in our own daughter's abduction and worse. Equally, it has been devastating to witness the detrimental effect this status has had on the search for Madeleine.

Narrator: Increasingly sidelined from the real investigation, Halligen started to spin tales about the Praia da Luz operation to colleagues back in Washington DC.

Richard Parton: He starts going over these elaborate schemes that he's got people down there for. And he is running this. He's got a guy that's under cover as a disenfranchised priest.

Narrator: Halligen was telling people he hoped the priest would be able to extract a confession from someone who knew about Madeleine's fate.

Richard Parton: He's got a couple that's on holiday with a child that looks a lot like Madeleine. Apparently she was to be used as bait to see who might have been interested in a blonde haired little girl. That's a pretty hefty operation to support. The story he's trying to tell me, he had it all covered.

Narrator: The investigation was now 5 months old. Things were starting to unravel for Kevin Halligen. Questions were mounting on how he spent the vast sums paid so far and that wasn't all.

Tim Craig-Harvey: They had been promised something which wasn't being delivered, that something being satellite imagery of their daughter being abducted. “You promised it. It was part of the pitch. Where is it?”

Narrator: He'd clinched the contract with boasts of military grade material, but despite repeated promises, images from the night Madeleine disappeared had not been produced.

Tim Craig-Harvey: From all the enquiries I made with companies all over the world, there was no imagery taken over Praia da Luz of that night, and Kevin knew this because I told him.

Henri Exton: Heligan couldn't deliver his IT side. He said he had access to satellite not only on the day but retrospectively. And the only thing he ever produced was a Google map of Praia da Luz. We just laughed thinking “Is this it?”.

Narrator: And it wasn't just the McCann's he was letting down.

Tim Craig-Harvey: On the Friday morning the locks had been changed on the office. Kevin had told the landlord that I had the money to pay the rent and had chosen not too and had effectively stuck it in my back pocket and walked off. There was no point in trying to talk to Kevin because he wasn't in the country and had pretty much stopped taking my calls anyway.

Henri Exton: Money would come in on the Monday and within minutes Halligen was spending that money on refurbishing the Great Falls mansion and on £700 lunches. All this money was going on non investigative stuff. Given that I had people who were doing incredible work not being paid, I was having to pay them. He was making excuses and it didn't matter that there was a little girl involved

Narrator: Just as alarm bells were ringing about Halligen, the press dropped a bombshell.

Tim Craig-Harvey: The gist of the story was that Halligen was a conman, that he had stolen funds, that nothing had been delivered, and that the contract had been cancelled.

Narrator: Amidst claims and counterclaims, the investigation was disintegrating and the Find Madeleine Fund was demanding all the investigation files and full disclosure of the money spent.

Kevin Halligen: It is a gross distortion of what was actually happening. The print media in particular took this line that really nothing was being done, I was living the high life on the proceeds of the McCann case. Trust me, I didn't buy so much as, you know, a new suit in DC.

Narrator: But Henri Exton found a different story when he obtained Halligen’s bank accounts.

Henri Exton: He kept a suite at the Willard hotel open permanently, and he had a discounted rate at $700 a night. It was just ostentatious beyond belief.

Kevin Halligen: The money - all of it - is fully accountable and the fact that I actually had to raise the loan in order to pay these people substantiates that, and that's provable. It's paper.

Interviewer: Who was the loan raised with for example?

Kevin Halligen: The name of the company …. oh my word …. I'll come back to you on that. I just can't remember it - it's gone clean out of my mind. Basically it's a clearing house in DC.

Narrator: Henri Exton lost more than £100,000, and he wasn't the only contractor out of pocket.

Richard Parton: People whom Kevin owes money to are coming out of the woodwork around here. The bills that he ran up were quite significant for a lot of private contractors, so me and two other individuals took it upon ourselves to start looking, to start finding him.

Narrator: Kevin had sold his Washington mansion and left his American wife Maria. By now people weren't only asking about the money. The fiction that was Halligen’s international reputation started to fall apart. The story was it was time for Halligen to clear out of town.

Tim Craig-Harvey: He went into - I think it was - PNC bank in DC and drew out $100,000 at a time, stuffed it in his pocket, and that was the last anyone saw of him.

Kevin Halligen: It didn't vanish. Everybody knew that I was going to Rome. It has also been reported that I was going to Rome for a holiday with this hot young lady. Untrue. This myth that I'd vanish off to Rome and spend everybody's money is exactly that - a myth.

Narrator: When the public raised funds to find Madeleine, they would never have believed that more than a million dollars of it would end up in the hands of one of the world's biggest conmen. On the run from the FBI and former colleagues, questions were now being asked about where the million dollar budget to find Madeleine had gone.

John Taylor: They were really two Kevins. There was one Kevin who was this intelligence officer, who was running back and forth diligently working on important stuff. And then, apparently, there was a second Kevin, and this was a Kevin who was staying in posh hotels, had a mansion, and was running around with a chauffeur and eating at the finest restaurants and having what appeared to be a pretty good time living the high life.

Narrator: Former MI5 man Henri Exton, who had months on the ground in Praia da Luz investigating Madeleine's disappearance, now turned his sights on his associate.

Henri Exton: When I realised that he wasn't who he said he was, and that he was taking the money, stealing the money, and everything he was doing, I started to investigate him. It was a concerted and coordinated private investigation which was privately funded, and we spent a lot of private money ourselves looking for him. I was responsible for compiling the dossier of evidence and I took it to the FBI.

Narrator: Exton alleged he had found more than four million dollars in theft and fraud including from members of his own team working on the Madeleine case.

James R Conner III: I met with Henri Exton and he brought with him some allegations and some documentations that substantiated his claim. I made no promises to him and I took it back to FBI management and we reviewed it for, you know, whether it was something that we could get prosecuted and whether it was something appropriate for us to work. And we decided it was and I started following the logical course.

Narrator: Halligen’s powerful friends had now become formidable enemies. With the FBI, they put together the pieces of the jigsaw that was Halligen’s past.

Henri Exton: He would be evasive if you tried to go into his background even subtly. When I first met him he was Kevin Halligan. And when I went to the red defence office, everybody called him “Kevin”. When he then invited me to go to America, people started calling him “Richard”. So when I came back to England, the people in the office in London said “Who’s Richard?”. I said “It's Kevin.” They said “Why is he calling himself Richard?”. I said “I don't know.” I asked Richard “Is it Kevin?” and he said “I’m Kevin Richard Halligan, but Richard sounds better.” I remember him saying that to me. Then people in America started calling him “Halligen” - not “Halligan”. His real name was Kevin Patrick Halligen, and he was Irish, not English. He was reinventing himself in America.

Narrator: And apparently this wasn't the first time he'd reinvented himself.

Richard Parton: The best we can tell is we found a Kevin Patrick born in Dublin about the same time frame that Kevin Richard claims to be born.

Kevin Halligen: I have operated under other names. I have substantial issues which emanated from my Northern Ireland experience. OK? So I use different names at different times.

Interviewer: So let me come to that, yeah? What about this allegation that's been published, that you're not who you say you are; that Kevin Richard Halligen is not your real name, and that you really are Richard Patrick Halligan.

Kevin Halligen: As to Kevin Patrick Halligan that is incorrect. Factually incorrect.

Interviewer: And so you're saying that if you have used different names, it's to do with cover or ..

Kevin Halligen: It's to do with cover.

Richard Parton: We have a handwritten CV that he'd generated. Most of that doesn't match

Narrator: But there was one clue in the CV that led them to Halligen’s former life. Back in the 1990s he worked for this company. [Cellect] They had a contract for supplying battery packs to the British Army for bomb disposal robots. He was employed as a battery engineer.

Kevin Halligen: I was a technical specialist. I initially started working with the Ministry of Defence during the troubles in Northern Ireland. A lot of the work that I was doing was specifically for the special forces community.

Narrator: He was never security vetted so it is unlikely he’d ever worked with special forces in Northern Ireland. During the troubles, Kevin Halligen worked for a company supplying battery parts for household boilers.

Henri Exton: He implied on the technical side that he'd worked in Iraq, that he’d worked in the cabinet office on the technical side. But, no, he was very careful who he told which story to.

Tim Craig-Harvey: He told people that he'd been in the SAS, that he'd worked for and with MI6 and MI5.

Kevin Halligen: I never held myself out to work for MI5 or MI6, or the intelligence agencies. But the business that I have worked in - right? - for a long time is effectively the grey area of security and intelligence.

Henri Exton: His pentagon pass was a fake, and I found there was a partially constructed CIA pass on the computer, so it looked as if he was trying to create a pass for the CIA. He was printing together his wallet litter for the right scenario to pull it out of his wallet and flash it at somebody.

Tim Craig-Harvey: Kevin, in his mind, was James Bond and Richard Hanney and every superhero that you care to name. He was everything to everyone, and in his own mind, he was I think probably even greater than the sum of all those parts.

James R Conner III: By all the information that I could gather, in my best judgement and the judgement of others, he was not a spy

Narrator: But that didn’t stop him from fooling some of the most powerful people in the intelligence community who’d attended his wedding in 2007.

Tim Craig-Harvey: Because there was so many of the DC great and good who were going to be in attendance, there is no way that anyone could take photographs of these people and therefore no cameras.

Harry Winter: Maria told me simply that since he was so deeply involved in the intelligence services on both sides of the Atlantic, that he was not able to use his real name. I think everybody at the ceremony actually believed that I was a priest. In actuality, I'm an actor in the Washington DC area. For me it was yet another performance. I would do what was in essence a fake wedding.

Tim Craig-Harvey: When I found out that the wedding itself was a sham, I just laughed because it's just one more piece of Halligen. You kinda go “Really? That as well?”.

Harry Winter: In retrospect, I think the best actor there that day was Kevin Halligen.

Kevin Halligen: The idea of the fake wedding achieved two things. One was, it demonstrated that I was on friendly terms with, and close to, a lot of the people on the guest list. And the second was that it created the cover that I actually lived in DC rather than living in the UK because the people that I was going to be working against [are] certainly not the people you want turning up in leafy Surrey.

Narrator: Halligan said it was all part of a secret US operation.

Interviewer: Which was the government Agency

Kevin Halligen: DEA

Henri Exton: (Laughter) Well, that's the first time I've heard that.

Narrator: In truth, the answer to the fake wedding appears to be much simpler; he was already married and had been since 1991.

Tim Craig-Harvey: Clearly he was still married to his first wife. And why it bothered him, I'm not sure but he didn't want to be a bigamist.

Narrator: On the run from accusations of stealing from the Find Madeleine Fund and other clients, Halligen was finally tracked down.

Maia Miller: On November 12th, 2009 a federal grand jury here in DC returned an indictment charging Mr Halligen with wire fraud and money laundering. And he was arrested a few days later on November 25th 2009 in England. I believe it was at a hotel in Oxford.

Narrator: Ultimately it wasn't the McCann case that led to his arrest. In 2007 Halligen had bought his marital home with money stolen from a client in a previous kidnap-and-ransom operation.

Kevin Halligen: The stories emanate from the activity of a small group of well placed, powerful individuals who decided it would be an awful lot better if he was out of the way. Now - you know - some would say “Well, why not put a 9mm in the back of his head?”. I think it was much more useful for them to discredit me, to say that the guy is a complete fake.

Narrator: Halligen’s stories did not wash with federal prosecutors. He pleaded guilty

Maia Miller: He was sentenced to 44 months incarceration. He then was subjected to deportation proceedings and he was ultimately removed from the United States, and I believe he's no longer in the States.

Narrator: It is 7 years since Madeleine McCann went missing. Her disappearance remains a mystery. But today officers from Scotland Yard are working on a £5,000,000 investigation into what happened called “Operation Grange”.

DCI Andrew Redwood (from archive footage): I still genuinely believe that there is a possibility that she's alive.

Reporter: Now for the first time, detectives here at Scotland Yard will be looking at all the evidence. They’ll be checking files and documents and, in their own words, will be bringing their own expertise to the case.

Narrator: Kevin Halligen is out of jail and back in the UK. He’s set up a new consulting business and says he has offered advice to operation Grange. To date, they have not returned his calls. Henri Exton and the team completed a report on Operation Omega explaining all the work done and recommendations for future action. Its authors are legally bound not to discuss it publicly, but the report is in the hands of Scotland Yard detectives.

Henri Exton: Well obviously I can't go into any details but I suppose the regret is that work we presented didn't solve the mystery of her disappearance. But the work that we did do provided significant, significant opportunities to take it to the next level. Sadly the distraction of Halligen’s behavior somewhat undermined the very good work that was done.

Narrator: The report, funded by public donations, reveals that amongst the most groundbreaking leads were these two photo e-fits of a possible suspect, not revealed publicly until 5 years later when they were released by the current Scotland Yard investigation who described the e-fits as vitally significant.

[Acknowledgement pamalam at gerrymccannsblog]


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The McCanns Private Detectives - Page 2 Empty Re: The McCanns Private Detectives

Post by Verdi on 17.01.21 0:24

So, a new year and a not so new private detective agency to add to the string appointed by team McCann, under the auspices of their wealthy benefactor extraordinaire, Brian Kennedy, the multi-millionaire double glazier.  Not to say we've done with the former, Metodo3 and Oakley International, there is always room for elaboration within the mystique world of private dicks.

For the more observant observer, the most recent private detective agency hired by the Find Madeleine Fund Co Ltd to search needs little or no introduction but for the while we will give them our full attention.  After all, they did surpass all expectations in terms of private dickery and managed to last the longest contractually - or should I say financially.

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Madeleine who?

Yes, it's one Alphaig International, master minded by the comedic duo Arthur Cowley of the uncharted Flintshire hills and Dave Edgar, ex of the uncharted Ulster Constabulary from across the sea.  Or Little and Large some might say.  More so I think the latter, David Edgar, who over time offered more to the campaign in general, such was his commitment to the cause.

Who better but CMOMM's very own Tony Bennett to set the scene.  Tony has worked extensively on the subject of Alphaig International and it's curious machinations, all scattered around the forum over a period of time but this thread is designed to bring it all together, for ease of reference.  Be warned, there is a lot to read and absorb - all worthwhile rest assured.

Let business commence..

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The McCanns Private Detectives - Page 2 Empty Re: The McCanns Private Detectives

Post by Verdi on 17.01.21 0:34

This article was posted by Tony Bennett on 9 May 2011. It has been revised and updated by MMRG on 16 May 2019.

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Arthur Cowley's cottage, 950 feet up in the Flintshire Hills, Wales, on the
edge of Halkyn Common on the slopes of Halkyn Mountain
(photo by Tony Bennett: Copyright)


This cottage was claimed to be the registered office of ALPHAIG, which in turn has been deliberately misrepresented by the McCann Team as Dave Edgar and Arthur Cowley's 'Alpha Investigations Group'.

In 2009, media stories erupted about a new crack team of private investigators whom the McCann Team had employed to further their private investigations into Madeleine's disappearance. It was said to be a company called Alpha Investigations Group, and run its 'Head', former Detective Inspector Dave Edgar. This was all untrue.

Look very closely at the picture and among the six vehicles you see here, is a blue van in the background. It bears the legend: 'RACING PIGEONS', and that is indeed how he is known in his group of nine houses called Pant-y-Gof, located in the hamlet of Halkyn, just a mile above the village of Pentre Halkyn.

They call him 'the man with the pigeon lofts'.

No-one in his village seriously thinks he has ever run or even participated an investigations business run from this 950-foot high remote cottage. He's too busy with his pigeons.

Appropriate that, perhaps, for a stool pigeon.

Remember that...

* ALPHAIG nowhere ever publicised any contact details, neither 'phone number, nor e-mail address, nor website address

* 'Alpha Investigations Group' does not exist, and has never existed

* One of Brian Kennedy's business associates registered the domain name 'alphaig.co.uk' in January 2009, five months before Cowley's ALPHAIG was registered

* ALPHAIG was registered as a company only after the 7 May 2009 documentary in which Dave Edgar and Arthur Cowley first came to public notice, and has no assets to speak of and no employees.

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