The Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann™
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The Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann™
Welcome to 'The Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann' forum 🌹

Please log in, or register to view all the forums as some of them are 'members only', then settle in and help us get to the truth about what really happened to Madeleine Beth McCann.

When you register please do NOT use your email address for a username because everyone will be able to see it!




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Post by Silentscope 21.01.21 19:47

Practise makes perfect? 
24hamburg reports:
Kate and Gary McCann behaved differently in front of the camera than one would expect. 
Markus Lanz  would also have noticed this: "These parents seemed serene and incredibly strong from the start." 
Fuchs can only agree and adds: “Incredibly composed, composed acting. You have to know that sometimes they practiced these gigs for two days. The psychologists said they shouldn't show their  feelings ”.
But that's not all. “Then Kate McCann sat down with helpers and her husband and saw whether she could manage two or three sentences. It was a kind of perfectionism, ”says the editor. As a result, there has been a lot of wild abuse
Even threatening letters were not uncommon. The focus of the criticism would have been that the parents left their children alone. However, Fuchs also notes that it should not be forgotten that the restaurant where Madeleine McCann's parents stayed was on the hotel's premises.
Google translation.

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Post by PeterMac 22.01.21 9:19

Nick Pisa doing his bit again yesterdayMedia Mayhem - MCCANN MEDIA NONSENSE OF THE DAY 231.

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Post by Verdi 24.01.21 0:04

NEW MADDIE BOMBSHELL Top Madeleine McCann cop reveals chief suspect is mystery paedo in German prison NOT notorious child killer Martin Ney

Gerard Couzens

30 Nov 2019, 12:14Updated: 30 Nov 2019, 12:15

FORMER Portuguese police chief Goncalo Amaral has revealed a German paedophile suspected over Madeleine McCann’s disappearance is not Martin Ney.

The ex-cop sparked speculation Ney was the prime suspect after saying in an interview earlier this year investigators were focusing on a German paedophile in prison.

Madeleine disappeared days before her fourth birthday in May 2007 after parents Kate and Gerry left their children in their apartment in Praia da Luz.

Amaral was the officer initially in charge of the investigation and made the McCann's "arguidos" - or official suspects - before he was sacked from the case.

In his interview with an Australian podcast, he mentioned the possibility of a German paedophile being responsible - but he didn’t mention 49-year-old Hamburg-born child strangler Ney by name.

Instead he described the suspect only as someone who had been ruled out of the investigation into the missing British youngster in 2008 but later jailed in his home country.

Now Amaral, the original lead investigator in the case, has now said the suspect isn’t Ney, who was jailed for life in 2012 for abducting and murdering three children, and sexually abusing dozens more.

When he was shown a photo of him on Spanish TV, Amaral responded: “It can’t be him.”

“A paedophile who is German and serving life for killing children has been spoken about,” he told a show about missing adults and children.

“What I know is that the suspect is not him, it’s another man. He’s also in prison in Germany. He’s also a paedophile.”

In a bizarre twist, Amaral said the suspect looks similar to Madeleine’s dad Gerry before saying that Ney bears no resemblance to him.

The slur comes after years of legal wrangling between the former police chief and the missing youngster’s parents over his book ‘The Truth of the Lie.’

He claims in the controversial 2008 book that Gerry and Kate McCann had covered up their daughter’s accidental death in their holiday apartment.

The McCanns have made a last-ditch attempt to the European Court of Human Rights after losing a libel fight against Mr Amaral in Portugal.

Last year Amaral claimed MI5 spies had helped to cover up Madeleine’s death and disappearance.

He said British secret agents “for sure had an involvement” in an Australian documentary which aired in April 2018.

The McCanns have repeatedly said the fake accusations against them have harmed the search for Madeleine.

Scotland Yard launched its Operation Grange investigation in 2013 and still has a team working on the youngster’s disappearance.

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made" - Groucho Marx
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Post by Verdi 24.01.21 0:15

Madeleine: Who could have taken her?

Four years on from Madeleine McCann’s disappearance, a chilling picture of police incompetence and paedophile activity in the Algarve emerges in a new book by her mother.

May 10th 2011, 12:55 PM

THIS THURSDAY will mark the eighth birthday of Madeleine McCann, who disappeared from her bed in her holiday apartment at Praia da Luz four years ago.

Her mother, Kate McCann, is to mark the occasion by publishing a new book, in which she insists that she has not given up hope of finding out what happened to her daughter. But the books also reveals the shortcomings in the bungled investigation by police in Portugal.

In it, McCann recounts frightening new information that was released to the family only after the police file on Madeleine was closed in 2008. It suggests that Madeleine’s disappearance was not the first indication of danger to children holidaying on the Algarve:

Three intruders had been disturbed in children’s bedrooms within an hour’s drive of Praia da Luz in the three years before Madeleine was taken;
Five children had been abused in their beds while on holiday in the Algarve, as their parents slept in another room. Evidence of these incidents had never been collected or collated by Portuguese police.

McCann writes that she believes these crimes were “brushed under the carpet”.

It broke my heart to read the terrible accounts of these devastated parents and the experiences of their poor children … What these cases do demonstrate, however, is that British tourists in holiday accommodation were being targeted… It is so hard not to scream from the rooftops about how these crimes appear to have been brushed under the carpet.

Meanwhile, some chilling new information has emerged in connection with the investigation:

A paedophile British couple, Charles O’Neill and William Lauchlan, have reportedly been interviewed by British police about Madeleine’s disappearance after it emerged that they were travelling in Spain, the Canaries and possibly Portugal in May 2007, on false passports. They had previously been arrested by Spanish police in 2004 after abducting a 14-year-old boy. And in March 2007, they were posing as cleaners in a holiday villa apartment in Gran Canaria when a child, Yeremi Vargas, went missing as he played with his cousins on the street – just weeks before Madeleine’s disappearance. The Daily Mail reports that the pair are currently serving a total of 56 years in prison for sex attacks on children and the murder of the mother who threatened to expose them.

One of the two, Charles O’Neill (left below), bears a resemblance to the photofit of a man seen hanging around Praia da Luz in the days before Madeleine’s disappearance.

Charles O’Neill and William Lauchlan

The picture shows a man that was seen several times by different witnesses during the days leading up to Madeleine’s abduction on May 3rd 2007.

Another known paedophile, ‘Martin N[ey],’ was arrested last month for the murder of Dennis Klein, a 9-year-old boy who vanished on a school trip in Germany in 2001, and is wanted in questioning with a number of other child disappearances.

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Post by Verdi 24.01.21 0:24


Madeleine McCann's mother Kate reveals paedophile fears in new book in The Sun

7th May 2011, 8:39 pm
Updated: 4th April 2016, 11:58 pm

MADELEINE McCann’s mother has told for the first time of terrible visions that
her kidnapped daughter is being abused by a pervert.

In a heart-rending book serialised from today in The Sun, Kate, 43, writes how
she is haunted by “flashes” of Madeleine “screaming” for her and husband

The couple also tell The Sun exclusively about being at the centre of one of
the most harrowing stories of modern times.

Kate says four years after her three-year-old was snatched on a family holiday
in Portugal: “The idea that my Madeleine was taken by a paedophile is my
worst fear.

“I became consumed with it. It was torture for me. It was horrible, so vivid.

“It’s worse when I go to bed and think about that first awful night again,
when Madeleine went missing.

“That sense of dark and fear, of being desperate to sleep but not being able
to. I just end up plummeting down again.”

The emotion-charged book by ex-GP Kate is titled simply Madeleine.

She and consultant cardiologist Gerry, 42, admit they are plagued by guilt
over the night Madeleine vanished from their holiday apartment in Praia da
Luz while they enjoyed a meal with friends at a tapas bar.

Kate says: “If your child is killed in a traffic accident, or died of cancer,
parents are at peace. But Madeleine is still missing and she needs us to do

The 384-page book, which features previously unseen pictures of Madeleine, is
to be published on her daughter’s eighth birthday on Thursday.


Gerry put a comforting arm around Kate as he said of his brave wife: “There
were times when I thought she would never get back to being the woman I

“I could understand why something like this destroys relationships. It’s been
so hard to keep your own head above water at times.”

Fighting back tears he tells of the guilt that “consumed” the couple after
their lives changed forever that fateful night. Their tiny twins were also
asleep in the apartment.

Gerry says: “Who’s thinking about child abductions in a little sleepy
out-of-season tourist resort? It never entered our minds. We felt very safe
— it was a family resort.”

While making no excuses, he tells how their thoughts were: “What could happen?
The kids are in bed asleep.”


Gerry says: “If we could turn back the clock we would. Of course we wouldn’t
do something like leave the twins alone like that now.”

But he stresses: “Blaming us for not being there takes it away from the
abductor. Someone went into an apartment and stole a child.

“Of course we feel guilt. But it doesn’t bring the child back.”

Kate tells of the first night she peeped into her daughter’s pink bedroom
after the family got home to Rothley, Leics — breaking down as she recalls
imagining Madeleine saying: “Lie with me, Mummy. Lie with me.”

She confesses it shocks her to think her daughter would now be almost eight.
The mum says: “How has that time flown by?

“I see girls of eight and I try to imagine Madeleine like that. And I just

Their twins Amelie and Sean, now six, are a source of constant comfort. Sean
has promised his mum: “When you’re old, me and Amelie will look for

Kate says: “They know that Madeleine was stolen. They call the person who took
her ‘the naughty man’.

“They know it happened in Portugal. Amelie said, ‘We went to Portugal and then
we woke up and Madeleine was gone’.”

Kate says of the abductor: “I think it was someone who knew our movements. I
don’t think someone was passing by chance and took a child.”

Since Portuguese police called off their investigation in 2008, the search for
Madeleine has been carried on by private investigators.

The bill for that is met out of a campaign fund set up by Kate and Gerry.
Donations flooded in, building a total of nearly £2million.

Kate says her book is “to give an account of the truth” following vile slurs
that the couple themselves were involved. She surrounded herself with photos
of Madeleine as she wrote it — based on diaries she has kept.

YOU can read a fuller version of Kate’s shattering story in the printed
edition of The Sun today and all next week. In the following extract she
describes every mother’s worst nightmare. It is the night that is seared
into her memory — when she left Gerry and their friends at the restaurant
and returned to the apartment:

All was silent. Then I noticed that the door to the children’s bedroom was
open quite wide, not how we had left it.

I walked over and gently began to pull it to. Suddenly it slammed shut, as
if caught by a draught.

A little surprised, I turned to see if I’d left the patio doors open and
let in the breeze. Retracing my steps, I confirmed that I hadn’t.

Returning to the children’s room, I opened the door a little, and as I did
so glanced at Madeleine’s bed.

I couldn’t quite make her out in the dark. I remember looking at it and
looking at it for what was probably only a few seconds, though it felt like much longer.

It seems so daft now, but I didn’t switch on the light straight away. Force
of habit, I suppose: taking care to avoid waking the children at all costs.

When I realised Madeleine wasn’t actually there, I went through to our
bedroom to see if she’d got into our bed. That would explain the open door.

On the discovery of another empty bed, the first wave of panic hit me. As I
ran back into the children’s room the closed curtains flew up in a gust of

My heart lurched as I saw now that, behind them, the window was wide open
and the shutters on the outside raised all the way up. Nausea, terror,
disbelief, fear. Icy fear. Dear God, no! Please, no!

On Madeleine’s bed, the top right-hand corners of the covers were still
turned over forming a neat triangle. Cuddle cat and her pink princess
blanket were lying where they’d been when we kissed her goodnight

I dashed over to the second bed, on the other side of the travel cots,
where the twins slept on, oblivious, and looked out through the window. I’ve
no idea what I expected to see there. Refusing to acknowledge what I already
knew, and perhaps automatically going into a well-practised medical
emergency mode, I quickly scoured the apartment to exclude all other
possibilities, mentally ticking boxes I knew, deep down, were already

I checked the wardrobe in the children’s room. I ran into the kitchen,
throwing open all the cupboard doors, into our bedroom, searching the
wardrobes, in and out of the bathroom, all in about 15 seconds, before
hurtling out through the patio doors and down towards Gerry and our friends.

As soon as our table was in sight I started screaming. “Madeleine’s gone!
Someone’s taken her!”

© Kate McCann 2011. Extracted from MADELEINE by Kate McCann, to be
published by Bantam Press on May 12, priced £20.

Readers can buy the book for the special price of £18 including free UK and
Ireland p&p. To order please call 01206 255 800 and quote the reference

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made" - Groucho Marx
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Post by Verdi 26.01.21 15:07

This is a bit of a humdinger from The Olive Press worthy of a place in the anals of history. Not the man himself but one of the outfit - same meat different gravy..


By Wendy Williams - 23rd May [that month again] 2011

Kate McCann's request to see a priest on the night of her daughter Madeleine's disappearance, was used against her it has been revealed.

The devout Roman Catholic claims she came under suspicion because of the belief that people in Portugal 'only called a priest when they wanted their sins to be forgiven.

The flimsy dossier against the McCann's also included included sniffer dog evidence indicating the presence of blood and human remains in the apartment, later dismissed following forensic tests.

The revelation comes as British Prime Minister David Cameron ordered the reopening of files relating to the McCann case following a direct appeal from her parents.

The Met Police have been ordered to conduct a full review of all evidence in a bid to shed new light on the case.

Meanwhile, an image of the girl's abductor could finally be revealed thanks to high-tech profiling computers.

A Met Police case review team will run descriptions of potential suspects through facial identification software in a bid to produce the most accurate new e-fit.

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made" - Groucho Marx
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Post by Verdi 04.02.21 15:29

What a wonderful place CMOMM is for reference purposes, take a good eyes around, no knowing what you might find.  I've just come across this Mirror article from wayback when - 6th May (that month again) 2007 over on a Netflix thread.  Note. just three days after Madeleine McCann was reported missing.

It appears the McCann support network was already on the case, even before the Portuguese police could find their feet - well almost..

The net's closing in Sunday Mirror

Search for missing Maddy

• Police in hunt for a man acting strangely at complex
• Dad: I'm sure she'll be at 4th birthday next week

Lori Campbell Kate Mansey and Jon Clarke in the Algarve Portugal

6 May 2007

Detectives were last night closing in on a man they suspect of snatching little Maddy McCann from her holiday apartment.

They said they believed she was being held within three miles of the complex where she had been staying at Praia da Luz on Portugal's Algarve.

Guilhermino Encarnacao, chief of police in the region, said he had an artist's impression of the abductor but he feared that releasing it may put the three-year-old's life in danger.

He said he believed that Maddy had been taken by a sex offender, but there was also a possibility she had been kidnapped for a ransom
- Maddy's parents are both doctors, her father a highly-paid heart specialist.

Mr Encarnacao said: "We have a prime suspect. A man has been seen acting strangely and we have a sketch, but we are not releasing it yet. We do not want to put the girl at risk.

"We believe the girl is still in Portugal, and probably nearby. I cannot rule out it was a paedophile who took her."

Police raised the hope that Maddy could be found as her anguished parents spent a second night waiting for news of their daughter.

Gerry and Kate McCann, both 38, of Rothley, Leics, are staying two doors down from the apartment that Maddy was taken from between 9pm and 10pm on Thursday.

Yesterday Gerry went into the apartment and emerged carrying a suitcase and a bucket and spade for younger twins Amelie and Sean, two.

The couple were later seen walking between apartment blocks in the resort with the twins, accompanied by friends.

They are being comforted by family and specially-trained officers from Leicestershire who have flown to Portugal.

One senior Portuguese detective told the Sunday Mirror yesterday: "We know of two or three local paedophiles living between Lagos and Praia da Luz. We have their names and addresses. We also have a list of English and German sex offenders living in the area from Interpol. We are following up every lead."

Yesterday Maddy's heartbroken grandmother told how the family were clinging to the hope she will be able to attend her fourth birthday party on Saturday.

Susan Healy told the Sunday Mirror: "We were looking forward to seeing her next weekend and giving her her presents, but this is just so awful.

"Her father is adamant that she will be found."

Relatives have made her a special Dr Who cake in honour of her favourite programme. Maddy had been asleep on a bed next to her brother Sean when she was snatched.

Her parents had been eating dinner at a restaurant in the Ocean Club resort 100 yards from the apartment.

They had been taking turns to check on the children every half hour as they slept. But a frantic search was launched when Kate went back to the apartment at 9.45pm and found Maddy gone.

More than 100 locals and holiday makers took part in the hunt.

Hotel workers from the Mark Warner Holiday complex held hands in a line and combed the beach while others scoured the resort and nearby roads.

A police source said they had been studying CCTV footage in petrol stations and on motorways near the resort.

There were also reports from expats that a young girl was seen walking down a road with a couple.

Last night 150 extra officers were drafted in to help with the search, as well as people from the Red Cross, Maritime Police and firemen.

It is thought someone had been spying on the apartment and broken in by forcing the shutters on the patio doors and entering the apartment when he knew the adults had gone.

The ground-floor apartment was on the edge of a public road so Maddy's abductor would have been able to make a quick getaway.

Yesterday family and friends flew in to the popular holiday resort from Liverpool, Glasgow and Canada to comfort Maddy's parents.

Looking tired and distraught, her mum Kate clasped her husband's hand as they walked out of the apartment with their twins between them to collect their belongings.

Last night the little girl's great uncle, Brian Kennedy, said: "We fear the worst, but we are hoping for the best."

Mr Kennedy insisted that the couple had acted responsibly when they left the children in the room while they had dinner at the restaurant. He said: "The children were left only in the sense that when you put your children to bed, you don't stay in the room all night.

"Madeleine is a lovely little girl, an intelligent, bright child. As parents, they are absolutely devoted to their children. You won't find more caring parents anywhere."


The seven other adults, who had been on holiday with the McCann family, left yesterday as planned, leaving the parents free to spend time with worried relatives.

Meanwhile, questions were being raised on how secure the apartments were. There was also criticism of how quickly the police reacted to Maddy's disappearance.

Paula Jones, 34, who manages the apartments where the McCann family were staying said the properties were a hot spot for burglaries. She said: "We have a real problem with break-ins at the apartments because lots of holiday makers don't double lock the patio doors.

"Burglars wait and watch the apartments so they know who is coming and going and they strike when tourists are out at the beach or in the restaurants."

[Acknowledgement pamalam of gerrymcannsblog]

Journalist Lori Campbell was the person who aroused suspicion about Robert Murat.

Journalist Jon 'ragtime Jo' Clarke of the Spanish Olive Press, is surrounded with a litany of negativity of his own making.  He played quite a prominent role in the Netflix Madeleine McCann documentary, rubbing shoulders with some other dubious characters enroled for the production.  


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Post by Verdi 04.02.21 15:55

Portuguese police did not release e-fits of suspects in Madeleine McCann case

Two computer images created just three days after the girl vanished were not made public, files released today reveal

5th August 2008

Kate and Gerry McCann: already serving a heavy sentence

Portuguese police drew up e-fits of possible suspects in Madeleine McCann's abduction but failed to make them public, files released today revealed.

Two computer images were created based on witness accounts on May 6 last year, just three days after the little girl vanished.

However, authorities took the decision not to circulate the pictures, although doing so might have assisted their search.

Instead, the images have been made public for the first time today as part of a detailed dossier into the failed investigation.

The latest revelation into police efforts to find Madeleine comes as documents also showed Portuguese prosecutors believed "very little" conclusive evidence about the fate of the three-year-old had been uncovered.

In their final report, officials noted that detectives working on the case had even failed to prove whether the missing three-year-old was dead or alive.

The document — dated July 21, the day the investigation was officially shelved — was made public as part of the massive dossier of evidence assembled over the 14-month investigation.

Portuguese authorities released the police files yesterday after lifting the period of judicial secrecy in the case.

The final volume of the files contained a 58-page report written by public prosecutors Jose de Magalhaes e Menezes and Joao Melchior Gomes. In it they said Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, did not "act with intent" in leaving their children alone in their holiday apartment on the night the child went missing.

"They could not predict that in the resort they chose they could place the life of any of their children in danger," the prosecutors wrote.

They noted the McCanns were "already serving a heavy sentence" — Madeleine's disappearance — for going out to dinner without their children.

Portuguese detectives were unable to provide evidence that would allow the "formulation of any lucid, sensible, serious and honest conclusion" about the circumstances of the child going missing, the report said.

It continued: "This includes the most dramatic thing — ascertaining whether she is still alive or dead, which seems the most probable.

"The investigators are fully conscious their work is not exempt from imperfections. They worked with an enormous margin of error and achieved very little in terms of conclusive results, especially about the fate of the unfortunate child.

"This is not, unfortunately, a detective novel, a crime scenario fit for the investigative efforts of a Sherlock Holmes or Hercule Poirot, guided by the illusion that the forces of law and justice can always re-establish order."

The police files include details of the lines of inquiry, forensic reports, pictures of the bedroom where Madeleine was sleeping before she disappeared, and transcripts of interviews with the McCanns.

Documents from the dossier — amounting to more than 11,000 pages — have already revealed that detectives claimed the young girl's DNA had been found in her parents' hire car despite a British scientist's warning days earlier that tests were inconclusive.

Today, a family friend of the McCanns accused Portuguese officers of trying to extract a confession from Madeleine's father by lying about the results of forensic analysis.

Clarence Mitchell, spokesman for the 40-year-olds from Rothley, Leicestershire, said: "You have to ask what the police were trying to achieve by over-presenting evidence that they did not have, and clearly could not claim to have."

Lawyers for the McCanns were given access to the files last week. They are studying them for fresh leads that the couple's private detectives can follow up in their own search for their daughter.

Madeleine was nearly four when she vanished from her family's holiday apartment in the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz on May 3 last year.

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Post by Verdi 08.02.21 1:08

'TOO MANY SIMILARITIES' Dad of boy, 6, who vanished in Portugal 11 years before Madeleine McCann has ‘no doubt cases are linked


Nick Pisa

9 Jun 2020, 11:20Updated: 9 Jun 2020, 12:36

A DEVASTATED dad whose son vanished in Portugal eleven years before Madeleine McCann believes the two cases were connected.

Rene Hasee, six, went missing from a beach while he was on holiday in Aljezur just 25 miles from Praia da Luz where Madeleine disappeared in 2007.

Last night heartbroken Andreas Hasee told The Sun: "I have no doubt Madeleine and Rene's cases are linked.

"The evidence is just too much and the police are looking again at my son's disappearance.

"He was a lovely boy, my first child and I will never get over what happened.

"I think of him every day and imagine what sort of man he would have been and what we would have done together.

"Just look at both of the children, you can see how handsome Renee is and how beautiful Madeleine looks and they were almost the same age.

"I strongly believe both children were taken there is no doubt of it."

Initially when Rene vanished in 1996 Portuguese police said he had drowned and failed to carry out any proper searches of the sea for two days.

He ran ahead during a family walk on the beach to go in the sea.

After losing sight of him they never saw him again and were left with just his clothes lying on the beach.

Andreas said: "They were convinced he went into the water but I know in my heart he didn't. He was taken. I know it and I can feel it.

"I have no doubt Madeleine and Rene's cases are linked."
Andreas Hasee

"An expert showed that even if he has drowned the waves would have brought his body back but they never found him.

"But he would not have gone into the sea on his own and his footprints just stopped in the sand. The police investigation in Portugal was not thorough enough and I see the similarities with what happened to Madeleine."

Madeleine's prime suspect Christian B moved to the Algarve in 1995 shortly after being convicted of molesting a six-year-old girl in his native Germany.

The court heard he only stopped when she started screaming and he said he had "felt nothing" during the attack.

Andreas added: "The Portuguese police kept saying we don't get kidnappings here, it's not a big city it's a holiday destination but they were wrong.

"Two children were taken from there and who knows how many others.

"When I saw the picture of the man in prison all I could see was evil and then when his record came out and the fact he was living nearby just made me convinced he must be connected.

"When I think that Rene and Madeleine may have ended up in the hands of that paedophile it makes me sick. He is a convicted paedophile and always will be. Those tendencies never leave.

"It has brought everything flooding back for us and my poor father in law travelled back and forth to Portugal from Germany so many times to look for Rene and in the end it made him sick.

"We all offered to help the Portuguese police to look for Rene but all they did was shrug their shoulders and say 'what can you do?'".

It comes as the German prosecutor investigating Madeleine's disappearance fears Christian B may have committed more crimes against British victims.

Hans Christian Wolters said he has "evidence" Madeleine is dead but not enough to charge Christian B.

He told Sky News: “We think our suspect has done more crimes possibly against British, Irish or American people.

“All these people are asked to call us so we can solve these cases.”

He added: "All indications we have got that I can't tell you points in the direction that Madeleine is dead.

"The hard evidence we don’t have, we don’t have the crucial evidence of Madeleine McCann’s body.

"We expect that she is dead, but we don’t have enough evidence that we can get a warrant for our suspect in Germany for the murder of Madeleine McCann."

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Post by Verdi 08.02.21 1:10

Father of boy who disappeared in Algarve in 1996 claims police are re-opening his son's case

Six-year-old René Hasee was on holiday with his family in Aljezur, 25 miles from Praia da Luz, when he vanished on June 21, 1996

By Phoebe Southworth and Daniel Wighton 6 June 2020 • 11:46am

The father of a German boy who disappeared in the Algarve in 1996 claims police have told him they are re-opening his son's case, as fears grow that the Madeleine McCann suspect could be linked to this third missing child.

Six-year-old René Hasee was on holiday with his family in Aljezur, 25 miles from Praia da Luz, when he vanished on June 21, 1996.

The schoolboy, from Elsdorf, had been running ahead of his mother and stepfather towards the sea during a walk on the beach.

They lost sight of him and his clothes were later found, with the authorities speculating that he drowned in a tragic accident.

But René's father, Andreas Hasee, has now claimed that an investigator from the Federal Criminal Police Office in Germany called him this week for the first time in 20 years to reveal they were re-investigating his son's case.

He believes "there could be a connection" between his son's disappearance and that of Madeleine in Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007.

The prime suspect in the Madeleine case, 43-year-old Christian Brückner, had moved from Germany to Praia da Luz in 1995 aged 18, and would have been 19 when René went missing.

Mr Hasee told The Telegraph: "I find the two cases aren’t that different at all. Madeleine was a sweet little girl and my son was a small, sweet boy, and he was also the same age. A whole lot about the two cases fits together.

"For me, it would be enough to learn that my son sunk in the Atlantic. But when I think that he maybe fell into the hands of a paedophile, I think ‘god, what did he do with my child?’ Then it's much worse, I believe.

"I found that what Madeleine's parents did, working with the British press to constantly remind everyone about it all the time, was good.

"It wasn’t like that with my son in Germany. The authorities were not so active. For us we got nothing, zero - it was a tragic game."

The new development in René's case comes after prosecutors re-opened the probe into the disappearance of German five-year-old Inga Gehricke, who vanished during a family outing in Saxony-Anhalt on May 2, 2015.

Police in Germany and the Metropolitan Police have declined to comment on whether René's case is being linked to the investigation into Madeleine's disappearance.

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Post by Silentscope 08.02.21 11:20

There is no connection found between Renee H and Christian B,
Although there is evidence that CB was in the Area at the time where Ingha G went missing, no connection has been found either.

Source: Der Spiegel (Google translate into English) 8 June 20

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Post by Verdi 09.03.21 0:41


Why did cops investigating Madeleine McCann’s disappearance waste four years on ‘Tannerman’ lead – despite GP saying it was probably him?

Julian Totman always thought he was the man Jane Tanner saw carrying a child in a pink pyjama top the night Madeleine disappeared

  • Mike Sullivan

  • 6 May 2018, 22:25
  • Updated: 6 May 2018, 23:12

COPS spent four years trying to identify a man seen carrying a child on the night Madeleine McCann disappeared — despite a GP saying it was probably him.

Julian Totman walked near the McCanns’ apartment holding his two-year-old girl after getting her from a creche at the resort in Praia da Luz.

But Portuguese officers continued to pursue the line of inquiry triggered by Jane Tanner, a friend of Kate and Gerry McCann.
She said she saw a dark-haired man wearing a brown jacket, dark shoes and tan trousers carrying a child in pink and white pyjamas.

As well as matching much of the physical description of “Tannerman”, Dr Totman also wore the same clothes.

He was interviewed by the Guarda Nacional Republicana soon after Maddie, three, vanished in May 2007, but his wife Rachel said: “My husband had told the local police it could be him but we didn’t hear anything for years.

“When the police finally realised the significance it was too late to really help.

“We always thought it was Julian who was seen by Jane Tanner.

"But the national police who investigated didn’t get back to us and we don’t know if our information was ever passed on.”

Ms Tanner was one of the so-called Tapas Seven — the friends and family members dining with the McCanns at the time Maddie disappeared.

She was on her way to check on her kids at 9.15pm when she saw the man near Kate and Gerry’s apartment.
Gerry was nearby with pal Jeremy Wilkins having just looked in on Maddie and her younger twin siblings Sean and Amelie.

Kate then discovered their eldest child was missing when she went to check again at 10pm.

Ms Tanner later defied police orders to not comment publicly on what she saw.

She said: “I think it’s important that people know what I saw because I believe Madeleine was abducted.’’

And with Portuguese laws prohibiting the release of photofits of suspects, the McCanns put out an artist’s sketch of “Tannerman” in October 2007.

But efforts by the Totmans, who live in the South West, to point out the importance of Julian’s movements fell on deaf ears.

They were never contacted by Leicestershire police, whose officers were responsible at the time for collating all UK inquiries.

The force also failed to follow up on information from Paul and Julia Weinberger, pals of the Totmans, who said they had seen a pock-faced man hanging around the McCanns’ aparment twice that week.

The Portuguese probe was concluded in July 2008 and it was not until 2011 — when then-Home Secretary Theresa May ordered the Met carry out a review — that the Totmans’ account was finally taken seriously.

Det Chief Insp Andy Redwood described it as a “moment of revelation”.

He said: “We are almost certain now this sighting [Tannerman] is not the abductor.”

The Met probe then dramatically shifted focus to a sighting by Irishman Martin Smith at 10pm of a man — dubbed “Smithman” — carrying a child down a hill away from the Ocean Club.

They also appealed for information over a spate of burglaries at the resort in the period leading up to Maddie’s disappearance 11 years ago last week.

The British police investigation has now been scaled down and is likely to be shelved in October.
But one retired Met Police detective, who visited the resort with The Sun, is convinced Jane Tanner saw the real abductor.

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Post by crusader 09.03.21 8:01

Why, if Andy Redwood is so sure it was Julian Totman that Jane Tanner saw, does he give half an explanation, was it deliberate misdirection? Andy Redwood knew where the Totman apartment was and he knew that the person Jane Tanner saw was walking away from this direction.
If and it's a big if, Jane Tanner saw a person walking with a child that night, It was not Julian Totman, unless of course, he was wandering around willy nilly trying to get his child to sleep after picking her up from the night creche.

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Post by Verdi 09.03.21 11:24

Whilst Jane Tanner was flip flap flopping around the streets of Praia de Lux - it all happened between 21/22:00H on the night of 3rd May 2007 didn't it.

Gerry McCann child checking and relieving himself, Jane Tanner taking her flap flops or a walk, Carpenter on a promenade with child and the errant phantoman carry a bundle that could/might not have been a child wearing distinctive pyjamas and about the same age as Madeleine McCann - eventually!

Now what shall we call ex-DCI Andy Deadwood .... 'sinnerman'?

Too much information if you ask me.

ETA: Read between the lines, it's all the fault of the sardine munching wine swigging bungling Portuguese police. What do you take for lunch Mister Redwood?

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Post by Verdi 09.03.21 12:01

SIZING UP HIS TARGET? Madeleine McCann’s blonde suspect could be the man seen lurking near her apartment hours before she was snatched

Holly Christodoulou

4 Jun 2020, 16:44Updated: 4 Jun 2020, 17:21

A BLONDE Madeleine McCann suspect could be the man spotted lurking near her holiday apartment just hours before she was snatched from her bed.


On the day the three-year-old vanished, a witness claimed they saw a man skulking around the Ocean Club apartment where Madeleine and her family were staying.

The suspect was seen at 4pm - around six hours before the youngster was discovered missing from her bed and the alarm raised.

He was described as white, aged 30 to 35, thin with shirt, light-coloured hair.

In 2013, an e-fit was released of the man - with detectives from Scotland Yard now saying this has "not been ruled out" after it was revealed they had a prime suspect living in Germany.

The chief suspect, named today as paedo Christian B, lived in Praia da Luz between 1995 and 2007 and has been described as blonde - matching the mystery man spotted lurking near the McCann's apartment.

It was originally believed the e-fit could have been notorious child killer Martin Ney but this has since been ruled out.

Speaking about the sighting in her bestselling 2011 book Madeleine, her mum Kate said: "His behaviour struck the witness as suspicious.

"He appeared to be trying to close the gate quietly, using both hands, and very slowly and deliberately checking in both directions before walking to the end of the pathway and on to Rua Dr Gentil Martins."

The gate he walked through is understood to be to apartment 5B, next to the McCann’s 5A, where Kate and Gerry's friends Matt and Rachael Oldfield and their young daughter Grace were staying.

The suspect at the heart of the probe has today been revealed as Christian B - a paedo caged for “multiple” child sex attacks.

He was born in Germany in 1976 but moved to Portugal in his late teens.

While living in the country between 1995 and 2007, he rented two homes while selling drugs and burgling homes to top up his income from working part-time in the food industry.

One of the homes he rented is just five miles from the Ocean Club apartment where Madeleine is feared to have been snatched from her bed on May 3, 2007.

The white house with a typical Portuguese orange roof is up in the hills above Praia da Luz on a secluded road surrounded by just a few other houses.

A drive from the home to the holiday club where Madeleine and her family were staying takes just 11 minutes through rolling countryside.

The paedo, who was convicted of sexual assault against two young girls, also had a "vile and disgusting" lair - again just a few miles from the apartment.

The farmhouse he rented was said to be on a footpath leading to the beach where the little girl played while on holiday with her mum, dad Gerry and twin siblings Sean and Amelie.

Christian B was jailed in Germany last year for seven years for the rape of a 72-year-old American woman in Portugal two years before Madeleine went missing, Braunschweiger Zeitung reports.

He broke into the victim's house armed with “a curved sabre” and a rope to tie her to a wooden beam.

She was blindfolded, gagged and whipped with a piece of metal before being raped and robbed.

The victim told the police: “He enjoyed torturing me.”

He also has a long rapsheet for drug offences and sex attacks on kids, sexual coercion, theft and breaking and entering, reports Bild.

It has also been reported the prolific burglar first broke into a house in 1992 when he was aged around 15.

Hans Christian Wolters, a spokesman for the Braunschweig Public Prosecutor's Office, said today: "With the suspect, we are talking about a sexual predator who has already been convicted of crimes against little girls and he's already serving a long sentence."

Police in Germany fear the fiend may have been working with an accomplice when he broke into the McCann apartment, who may know where Madeleine's body is.

They revealed today they are investigating the convicted rapist "on suspicion of murder" and say they believe Madeleine is dead.

A number of potential links between Christian B and the disappearance have arisen - including an alleged conversation about Madeleine in a chatroom before police began honing in on him.

The paedo was first thrust into the frame in 2017 after allegedly confessing to abducting Madeleine in a bar.

He was reportedly chatting to the friend in Germany when a TV report came on about the tenth anniversary of the girl's disappearance and he suggested he knew what had happened to her.

German sources claim he boasted he had "snatched her" but didn’t say he had killed her.

The 43-year-old prisoner was revealed to be living in a campervan in Praia da Luz in Portugal around the time the youngster vanished on May 3, 2007.

Cops say he was driving the vehicle in the same town just days before Madeleine vanished and is believed to have been living in it for days or weeks before and after the date of her disappearance.

The paedo has also been linked to a 1993 Jaguar XJR6 with a German number plate seen in Praia da Luz and surrounding areas in 2006 and 2007.

German police believe one of the two vehicles were used in the disappearance of Madeleine.

On May 4, 2007 - the day after Madeleine vanished - the man got the Jaguar re-registered in Germany under someone else's name although it is believed the vehicle remained in Portugal.

He also took a mysterious 30-minute phonecall just one hour before the disappearance and had also rented two homes in Portugal just miles from the Ocean Club where Madeleine was staying.


Cripes - pick the bones out of that one, thank goodness the cornflakes are already digested.

Lurkerman's got more faces than Rod Steiger on a bad hair day.


I really must get down to that publication!

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Post by Verdi 21.03.21 14:11

Madeleine: Gordon Brown 'snubs request for No 10 meeting with McCanns'

Last updated at 20:45 10 December 2007

The parents of missing Madeleine McCann have demanded a high-level meeting with Gordon Brown amid fears the Government has abandoned their case, it emerged today.

Kate and Gerry reportedly made a desperate plea to the PM to arrange a private summit with their legal team and wealthy benefactors two weeks ago.

But the request is said to have been turned down by Number 10 who will only offer the McCanns a low-level consular meeting.

While Kate and Gerry, both 39, had no plans to attend the talks, their lawyers Kingsley Napley and millionaire supporters Brian Kennedy, Sir Richard Branson and Stephen Winyard are apparently keen to update the PM on the strength of their defence.

The couple's representatives, dubbed Team McCann, have also contacted the Foreign Office and the Home Office after growing concerns that the Government has turned its back on the family's plight.

After Madeleine's disappearance on May 3, Mr Brown pledged his support to the four-year-old's parents during a series of phone calls with Gerry.

But as soon as the pair were named "arguidos" - official suspects - by Portuguese police on September 7 all lines of communication were closed.

Critics of the McCanns have accused them of manipulating their high profile to gain Government "protection".

Last night a friend of the McCanns told the Sunday Express that Mr Brown had gone back on his promise to help them.

He said: "The lawyers and their backers are keen to hold talks with a Cabinet minister so we can show them how much progress has been made.

"The request was made two weeks ago and so far all we have been offered is a meeting with the consulate.

"All we want to do is update them on our position.

"Kate and Gerry do not need protection because they have done nothing wrong."

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has also snubbed the family.

One reason Mr Brown may be concerened is that the McCanns could still be charged over their daughter's fate.

The Prime Minister was due to visit Portugal on Thursday to sign the EU Constitution but speculation is mounting that Foreign Secretary David Miliband may attend in his place.

Mr Miliband, who first became involved with the McCann case in June, is another who has remained silent without officially withdrawing his support.

Kate and Gerry, of Rothlet Leicestershire, first appealed for his help in September claiming they feared that the "shocking injustice" would stop detectives finding out what happened to their daughter.

Mr Winyard, who owns the luxury Stobo Vastle spa in Peebleshire, Scotland, and pledged £100,000 to help the McCanns meet their legal costs, attacked the PM's lack of support.

He said: "This Government was elected to look after its citizens and it's a fundamental principle of our legal system that everyone is innocent until proven guilty.

"With that in mind I would strongly urge that Gordon Brown accede to our request."

A Downing Street spokesman said: "We don't comment on ongoing cases."

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Post by Verdi 08.04.21 16:58

What McCann spokesman Clarence Mitchell really thinks happened to Madeleine


Madeline Goodwin

3 June 2019 • 5:20pm

When Clarence Mitchell picked up the phone at work one morning, he expected yet another routine conversation.

But it was a phone call that plucked him from the mundane life of a civil service job and dropped him right in the heart of one of the biggest missing children’s cases the world has ever seen.  

An ex-BBC reporter, Mitchell was by then working in a government-led arm on media monitoring, but had asked ex-colleagues to keep him in mind for any big stories that broke. “I thought it might be something like bird flu, or foot and mouth. A general crisis that flares up from time to time,” explains Mitchell.

But this was May 2007, and a three-year-old Madeleine McCann had just been snatched from her hotel room in Praia du Luz, Portugal, taken from her bed while her parents dined in a nearby restaurant.

“The ambassador [to Portugal] had sent a couple of press officers down there, but they were overwhelmed by the media response. He asked for some extra help from London,” Mitchell recalls.

“I was sent out and told it would just be a fortnight or so." Mitchell is still helping the family. Fascination with Madeleine's case has never abated - a recent Netflix series, The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann, was released in March - and Mitchell has been handling Gerry and Kate's media dealings ever since.

“Some of the coverage had been very negative, and so I thought this was a chance to help them," the 57-year-old says.

“We have a good working relationship. Friendly but professional," he adds. "We do not socialise, it is not necessarily appropriate, but the media coverage is still pretty intrusive and they see me as a part of dealing with it."

Mitchell had to consider the impact that taking on such a case would have on him - his own children were 10, eight and one at the time. “I could not help but think of my kids when I was at the height of it... I was away from home a lot of the time as well," he recalls.

“That said, I treated it as a job. Although it was upsetting, and I could see the pain it was causing the family, I could not afford to get emotionally attached to the situation. I just had to look at the set of facts in front of me, and treat it as dispassionately as possible."

He admits that it was "upsetting," but adds that, "without being callous, I had to keep the actual emotion to one side. Not wanting to sound cold-hearted, but I do not think it has affected me particularly badly. I tried to be as impartial as possible, and still try to this day.”

Over the years, the McCanns have faced a great deal of criticism over their parenting, and perceived role in Madeleine’s disappearance. “A lot of it is misinformed, misguided and based purely on assumptions or lack of knowledge," Mitchell says. Mostly, though, it is "prejudice. People deciding that they don’t like the McCanns.”

Mitchell estimates that "thousands" of people have told him they have seen the little girl in a dream - including a lot of psychics - while "one of the most ridiculous conspiracy theories I have heard was that Madeleine was born as the result of a government cloning project.

“People also assumed the worst. That [the McCanns] were getting drunk, that they were having fun and that they did not care about their children."

Further criticism of Gerry and Kate has labelled them "neglectful. There is even those who say that the parents know what happened. They don’t. It is just not true. But try explaining that in the noise of social media and general coverage.”

The McCanns' restrained emotional response to the cameras in the immediate aftermath of Madeleine's disappearance provoked questions: how could they be so contained after something so terrible had happened?

“One of the reasons they were so controlled was because they were told very early on that often, in the case of paedophilic kidnaps, the perpetrators watch media coverage and enjoy seeing the distress that they have caused," Mitchell explains.

“So, the police told them not to cry. Not to show any over-emotion. Kate and Gerry, both doctors and both logical, were not going to let that b------ have that satisfaction and so were very rigid.

He understands, though, that “for someone who does not know that, they might think it looks a bit suspicious. It is almost like the public were expecting the parents to react in a certain way.”

Things were worsened still by what he calls "a spin-cycle of madness." The papers were full of "McCann fury", he remembers; "the tabloids exaggerated and distorted the information." He is also critical of the Portuguese authorities, as "there would be certain bits of information that could have only come from interviews with the Portuguese police, who wouldn't then confirm anything due to Portuguese laws prohibiting the discussion of legal cases.”

Since the McCanns entered the public eye in 2007, they have received mountains of abuse; Mitchell, too, has had his fair share of online trolls.

“I get slammed online all the time for defending them," he says, adding that while he ignores it as best he can, "it is hurtful and it is unnecessary. The McCanns ignore the online negativity and so do I. We only act if there are specific, actionable threats which are always reported to the police.”

Certain tabloids have cashed in on public fascination with Madeleine, Mitchell believes, as "every time they put [her] on the front page, circulation would go up" - whether there really were new developments in her case or not. Front page apologies from a number of red tops followed, while "substantial damages" were paid.

A major source of ill feeling towards the McCanns has been the considerable funding the case has received. The Find Madeleine Fund was established in 2007, made up of public donations as well as settlement money from the Express newspaper group, and proceeds from Kate McCann's book.

“The family asked for help in finding their daughter, as anybody would, and the Government chose to support them," Mitchell says, "I do agree though, what do you say to the parent of another missing child? The mother of Ben Needham, for example, has occasionally been upset that the McCanns' case gets so much coverage.”

It is our digital age, however, that Mitchell believes has made all the difference.

“Madeleine has been, arguably, the most high-profile missing child case in the internet era. It was not a decision of our making.”

Nowadays, he does little work with the McCanns, and remains uncertain over Madeleine's fate. “I asked the British authorities what they think happened and if there was any family involvement, and they assured me it was just a rare case of stranger abduction.

“It’s very rare, but it can happen." A sexual motive, he says, is an "obvious" possibility. Kate and Gerry remain hopeful that, as per "other cases, where a missing child has been found alive after many years," there remains hope: that, coupled with "the complete absence of any evidence that Madeleine has been physically harmed," gives them the sense that their eldest daughter may well still be alive.

Though Mitchell hopes the mystery "could all end on one phone call tomorrow, so far, it hasn’t.

“A child was taken to order from that room.”

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Post by Verdi 22.04.21 17:14

Never let truth get in the way of a good story. This nifty little piece of trollop was published by the Grauniad around the same time as Christian 'he who can't be named' Brueckner hit the headlines.

I like so many other people, have wondered why the case has passed the test of time, when other lost children have been forgotten by global media.

Why Madeleine McCann was never just another 'lost child' story

Giles Tremlett

A new suspect has reignited interest in her case, but the British media was hooked from the day she went missing.

It is the story that never goes away. And why should it? The three-year-old girl with the smudge in her right eye would now be a British teenager, looking forward to another family holiday on a Mediterranean or Atlantic beach. Next year she would go to university, perhaps following her high-achieving parents to medical school. Instead, Madeleine McCann is frozen in time – the little girl who disappeared from the family’s Portuguese holiday apartment on 3 May 2007.

Madeleine’s disappearance is an almost unbearable tragedy. Those of us who watched Kate and Gerry McCann step out each morning from their Praia da Luz apartment to drop off the younger twins – Sean and Amelie – so they could continue the campaign to find their daughter, always saw that. Never in British journalism, indeed, have so many hardened hacks so desperately hoped to stumble upon a little girl – perhaps just dropped off alive by her kidnapper on a cobbled Portuguese pavement.

Otherwise, this is a tale uniquely shaped by British media culture. It is so British that the Portuguese media at first paid scant attention to the newest suspect, revealed this week. Motive, means and behaviour all meet in convicted German paedophile Christian Brückner – who, nevertheless, remains innocent until proven guilty. We know opportunity was also present.

When the Brückner news broke, the Portuguese press did not immediately show huge interest. On Thursday Público newspaper spoke of “the latest suspect” (from an already exhaustingly long list). On Friday it reported on how Praia da Luz just “wants the case to close”. People were obviously tired of an old story that still haunts the tourist resort, but which is continually given fresh life by British tabloids that jump on any new clue.

The Portuguese media are not callous. But they had moved on, partly in response to the heavy-footed British press and its mostly condescending attitude to the Portuguese people and police.

The McCann story, indeed, is also a snapshot of Britain and its poisonous media culture. By May 2007, at least 10 million Britons spent their summer holidays in Spain and Portugal. Almost 1 million lived there. Many showed little or no interest in their host countries. They brought, too, a degree of chaos. British tourists kept local police and emergency services busy by needing rescue from drunken late-night swims, overdosing, choking on their own vomit, fighting outside clubs, and jumping, falling or being pushed off balconies. Occasionally they stabbed or shot one another. In the worst tragedies, toddlers drowned in villa swimming pools.

A few years before Madeleine disappeared, a three-month-old British boy was found in a pushchair on a pavement in the Algarve’s main city of Faro. He had been dumped there just before his parents flew home to Gatwick. The Portuguese were shocked. British tourists were good for the economy; but they also did the strangest, most inhuman things.

UK tabloids lapped up these stories. Part of their readership was sitting on the beach, reading summer editions printed on Spanish presses.

The McCanns were not that kind of tourist. Kate and Gerry were both doctors. In fact they were the perfect victims: the blonde white girl with the professional parents. These, after all, were the people the media thought they were speaking to – white, middle-class families. But British children go missing more frequently than we would like. They rarely, if ever, get this much attention.

It is always, too, somehow more fascinating if the disappearance happens abroad. That taps into a very British fear of the foreign – and enables us to blame another culture. This was only too visible in the warfare waged between the British media and their Portuguese counterparts, and by sections of the police in both countries. Within days, Kate and Gerry had built a tight relationship with Sky News – Rupert Murdoch’s 24-hour service.

Sky catapulted the McCanns to the top of every news list. Teams of reporters appeared from the Daily Mail and elsewhere, as broadsheets played catch-up. I missed the first days, having written this off as yet another “child lost on beach” story, but eventually spent more than a month in Praia da Luz. That period ended when Gerry McCann drove his family to the airport early one morning, while half a dozen cars swarmed around him, bristling with camera lenses.

In between, as real stories ran dry, tabloid culture took over. A Daily Express reporter wearily explained to me that his editor expected a front page splash every two days. Negative stories grew, targeting the McCanns and the Portuguese police. The following year Express newspapers paid £550,000 in damages to the family. “The general theme of the articles was to suggest that Mr and Mrs McCann were responsible for the death of Madeleine … and that they had then disposed of her body,” the couple’s lawyers stated. The McCanns later became key witnesses to the Leveson inquiry on press misconduct.

The thuggery of mid-2000s tabloids has since emigrated (without journalists) to Facebook and social media. Conspiracy theories abound, fuelled by poisonous commentary and mad theories about “white slavery”.

Yet the tone was set long ago. It turned the Portuguese against this story, and exhausted the patience of people in Praia da Luz. When I called several of them on Thursday evening, they spoke of a tragic moment from a different era – and this new appeal relies on people recalling events, places, vehicles and phone numbers from 2007. So despite this being such a high-profile British story, it will probably be the Portuguese who, eventually, solve the crime.

Giles Tremlett is a correspondent based in Spain. He is the author of Ghosts of Spain, and biographies of Catherine of Aragon and Isabella of Castile

think I wonder if he's an associate of the other Spanish novelist #mockumercilessly 'Hackman'.


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Post by Verdi 26.04.21 14:38

Madeleine McCann search fund 'running out'

Parents Gerry and Kate McCann express dismay at lack of help from authorities three years after their daughter vanished

Published 3rd November 2010

The parents of Madeleine McCann fear that the hunt for their missing daughter is grinding to a halt as their funds to maintain the search dry up.

Madeleine was three when she went missing from her family's holiday flat in Praia da Luz, Portugal, on 3 May 2007 as her parents dined with friends nearby.

Gerry and Kate McCann, both 42, said that the Find Madeleine Fund was running low and would last only until spring, after which they would no longer be able to pay private investigators.

"When the money runs out we will not be able to pay the investigators helping us to find Madeleine," Kate McCann told the Sun. "It will be just me and Gerry left looking for her. I just can't contemplate that."

The fund has fallen from £2m at its peak to £300,000. The couple have sent letters to public figures asking for money to continue the search for their daughter. They are convinced Madeleine is alive and are angry they are not receiving more help from the authorities.

"There's no evidence that Madeleine is not out there alive," said Kate McCann. "It's just heartbreaking to think that nothing is getting done other than what we are having to do, other than our small team." The couple are urging the public to support their call for a full case review of Madeleine's disappearance by signing an online petition.

"We need action, I don't need fluffy worthless words. We need somebody to do something," said Kate McCann.

"Madeleine is still missing, she's a little girl, her abductor is still out there, so by not carrying on we are putting other children at risk. I think more needs to be done."

Gerry McCann said: "Essentially for the last three and a half years the authorities have not been doing anything proactive to help Madeleine. That is despite our best efforts to encourage them to do so. I don't think it's right that the onus should fall on us – the authorities really should be doing more."

The couple, from Rothley, Leicestershire, have met former home secretaries Alan Johnson and Jacqui Smith, as well as the current home secretary, Theresa May, to discuss the issue and to push for a review of the case.

Portuguese police launched a huge investigation with the support of British officers after Madeleine went missing, but the inquiry was formally shelved in July 2008 without reaching any firm conclusions about her fate.

A Home Office spokesman said May was "deeply sympathetic" to the couple's situation. "The government wants to ensure that everything feasible is being done to progress the search for Madeleine," he said.

"The British authorities will maintain a dialogue with the Portuguese and continue to liaise with Madeleine's family on any developments."

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Post by Verdi 10.05.21 22:50

YEARS OF TRAUMA Madeleine McCann documentary – Moment mum Kate breaks down as she reveals sick taunts by trolls over Maddie’s disappearance

The pair opened up about the attacks in an old interview featured in Netflix documentary The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann

Corey Charlton

19 Mar 2019, 10:41Updated: 19 Mar 2019, 11:49

Woe woe and thrice woe

THIS is the heartbreaking moment Kate McCann breaks down in tears as she and husband Gerry describe how they deal with vicious abuse by twisted trolls.

The pair opened up about the attacks in an old interview featured in Netflix documentary The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann.


It features coverage of the vile false accusations of guilt levelled towards the McCanns on social media, as well as barmy conspiracy theories.

Fighting back tears, Kate McCann tells the interviewer: "I know how much I love Madeleine and I have no doubt that Madeleine knows how much I love her.

"I know that, and regardless of what those people say out there, those bloggers and people on the forums who obviously get some kind of kick out of being nasty, I know that and I know Madeleine knows that.

"I've just got to kind of keep hold of that really."

Other interviewees, including Ernie Allen, the former CEO of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and PR adviser David Hughes, told Netflix producers that the social media speculation fuelled the conspiracy theories and distorted the Maddie investigation.

Maddie disappeared from her bed on May 3, 2007, while on holiday with her parents and family friends at a resort in Praia da Luz, Portugal.

Her parents, Gerry and Kate McCann, had left her sleeping with her siblings while they had dinner at the hotel's restaurant - only realising about 10pm that she was gone.


Just 10 months after Maddie vanished, an officer from Scotland Yard filed a memo detailing the Belgium connection.

It read: "Intelligence suggests that a paedophile ring in Belgium made an order for a young girl 3 days before Madeleine McCann was taken.

"Somebody connected to this group saw Maddie took a photograph of her and sent it to Belgium.

"The purchaser agreed that the girl was suitable and Maddie was taken."

Portuguese police pursued the lead though it failed to lead to a breakthrough.

The President of the Portuguese Association of Missing Children, Patricia de Sousa Cipriano, told the Netflix producers: "We have information that our country is used by traffickers to pass children to other countries.

"They enter the country through the Algarve and then they go to Spain, to France, to Germany, to be exploited.

"They have a very strong structure that allows them to move human beings from one country to another in a matter of hours. It's frightening because it's very easy."

In 2011 Kate also wrote her own account of what happened that evening for a book titled "Madeleine: Our daughter's disappearance and the continuing search for her".

In it, Kate reveals Maddie's haunting words to her the day before her disappearance.

She wrote about how Maddie asked her: "Why didn't you come when Sean and I cried last night?"

Kate wrote: "Madeleine didn’t answer or elaborate. Gerry and I were disconcerted. Could Madeleine and Sean have woken up while we were at dinner? If so, it was worrying, obviously, but it didn’t seem very probable."

Meanwhile, Maddie's parents have slammed the new Netflix documentary on her disappearance, saying it "won’t help" the search.

The family also believe the controversial new film could "fuel conspiracy theorists", their spokesman said.

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Post by Verdi 11.05.21 1:58

The Sun videoed interview transcript -  roughly speaking..

Kate McCann

I know how much I love Madeleine

And I've no doubt Madeleine knows how much .. how I love her

I think .. I mean I know that ..  and I just got to think regardless of all those people say out there .. you know those bloggers and people on the forums who obviously get some kinda kick out of being nasty.  

I know that and I know Madeleine knows that and I've just gotta kinda keep hold of that really






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Post by Verdi 15.05.21 17:21


Couple Who Sold Bogus Bomb Detectors They Claimed Could Find Madeleine McCann Face Jail

01/08/2014 15:54 BST | Updated 01/08/2014 15:59 BST


A couple face jail after being found guilty of making bogus bomb detectors in their garden shed which they said could find missing Madeleine McCann. Husband and wife Samuel and Joan Tree made "outlandish claims" that the dud devices could track down explosives and drugs.

But the detectors, known as Alpha 6 and marketed through their company Keygrove, were just plastic boxes with an antenna strapped on to them and bits of torn-up paper inside. They cost just a few pounds to make, but were sold for as much as 2,000 US dollars (£1,171). The Trees are understood to have raked in hundreds of thousands of pounds after making up to 1,500 of the devices in the back garden of their semi-detached home.

One of the boxes was found to have a photograph of missing Madeleine cut into pieces inside. They were both found guilty at the Old Bailey today of making an article for use in a fraud between January 2007 and July 2012.

Mr Tree, 67, bowed his head in the dock as the jury's verdict, by a majority of 11 to one, was delivered. His 62-year-old wife was found guilty by a majority of 10 to two. Judge Richard Marks QC gave the pair bail ahead of sentencing but warned them: "You must understand that all options are open to the court and the strong likelihood given the offence of which you have been found guilty is a custodial sentence." Mr Tree claimed it was possible to find people by putting a photo in the box.

He said he had used the method to look for Madeleine and two other children who vanished in Norfolk some years ago. Prosecutor Sarah Whitehouse QC told the Old Bailey: "They claimed that this Alpha 6 was capable of detecting the presence of drugs and explosives and other substances and objects. They even claimed on one occasion that it is capable of finding particular people, most notably Madeleine McCann.

"These claims were all false. The device was nothing more than a plastic box with an antenna stuck on the top and some pieces of paper inside. It cost a few pounds to make and yet was sold to agents and suppliers for hundreds and sometimes thousands of times that amount. Despite the fact that these plastic boxes plainly could not work, people did, astonishingly, buy them."

They claimed the Alpha 6 could detect substances as small as 15 billionths of a gram at a range of up to 500 metres and was powered by nothing more than static electricity from the user's body. The prosecutor said: "The impression given is one of sophistication and effectiveness based upon scientific principles. The reality was that Samuel and Joan Tree were assembling the devices in the garden of their semi-detached house in Dunstable with plastic boxes made in China and glue and bits of paper."

She said Mr Tree was a "very talented salesman" who believed he had the ability to "pull the wool" over the eyes of his customers. The Trees are the latest in a string of British con artists convicted for making phoney bomb detectors. Gary Bolton, of Redshank Road in Chatham, Kent, was jailed last August for seven years for selling more than 1,000 "useless" detectors which he claimed could track down bombs, drugs, ivory and money.

James McCormick, of Langport in Somerset, was sentenced to 10 years last May for selling fake bomb detectors. Anthony Williamson, of Montgomery Road in Gosport, Hampshire, was also convicted last May of selling phoney gadgets. Detective Constable Joanne Law, who led the investigation for the City of London Police's Overseas Ant-Corruption Unit, said: "Sam and Joan Tree are criminals who put lives at risk when they chose to cash in on detectors manufactured to supposedly locate anything from hidden explosives to missing persons.

"The reality is the devices the husband and wife team created, which were later sold around the world to police and security services were absolutely useless and put both the users and the people they were bought to help and protect in grave danger." She said the convictions were the "concluding act" in a "highly complex, extensive and significant investigation".

Ms Law added: "The demise of these individuals sends a strong warning to anyone else who believes they can make criminal capital abroad while trading off the good name of British business." City of London Police Commander Steve Head, who oversees the Overseas Anti-Corruption Unit, said: "The conviction of Sam and Joan Tree highlights how the City of London Police's Overseas Anti-Corruption Unit is working with our partners to lead the fight against bribery and corruption that is cultivated at home and implemented abroad.

"International corruption undermines local economies and leaves often vulnerable communities exposed, without a voice and struggling to support themselves. We will continue to target those responsible and follow the evidence wherever it takes us around the world to ensure that justice is served."

The couple, of Houghton Road in Dunstable, Bedfordshire, will be sentenced on a date to be fixed next month.

Bolton lost challenges against his conviction and seven-year jail sentence yesterday, but the result of his appeal could not be reported until the jury returned verdicts in the Tree trial. His case was dismissed by three Court of Appeal judges in London. Bolton, now 48, was present in the dock of the court to hear Lord Justice Pitchford, Mr Justice Wilkie and Mr Justice Green reject his claims that he suffered "unfair prejudice" during his trial and that his sentence was too long.

Lord Justice Pitchford said the sentence was "appropriate" for the criminality involved in his case.

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Post by Verdi 24.05.21 12:52

The last time Madeleine McCann’s parents saw her she was a toddler. This month she turned 18

by Amanda Cassidy 23rd May 2021


The last time her parents ever saw her, she was just three years old. Madeleine, on holidays in Portugal with her family, spent the day of May 3rd 2007 at the kids club of the Ocean Club resort at Praia da Luz on the Algarve.

Her mother described her as a little more tired than usual after a day playing out in the sun. She read Madeleine and her siblings a story and tucked them into bed.

It is a story we all know. What happens next has haunted Kate and Gerry McCann for over a decade. They left the apartment to dine at a tapas restaurant nearby with friends. The group collaborated with a make-shift baby-listening service with one parent departing at regular intervals to check in on the children.

It had worked well throughout the holiday until Madeleine’s mother came into the apartment at 10 pm that night to find her children’s bedroom window open, the shutter lifted and her 3-year-old daughter missing from her bed. The subsequent horror, panic and confusion are charted in the 8-part Netflix documentary, often in laborious detail.

   As with anything Madeleine related – there is a morbid fascination with the details, however scant. But this show does little to advance the theories on her disappearance or shine a light on new suspects.

Instead, it is padded out with lengthy interviews with random tourists, locals with little to do with the investigation and a strange side-bar about the history of tourism in the Algarve. Kate and Gerry McCann are heavily featured although they did decline to take part in this series fearing it might hinder the British investigation that continues to this day.

Her 18th birthday, this month saw her family post another heartbreaking message online. “Happy 18th Birthday Madeleine,” the family wrote on their Facebook page dedicated to finding her.

“We love you and we’re waiting for you and we’re never going to give you up.” Despite going missing in 2007, the family has not given up and continues to search for Madeleine.

Developments are ongoing in the case that has eluded the police for 15 years. Last June, German police named a suspect for the first time; convicted paedophile, Christian Brueckner. He is currently serving time in jail for drug-related offenses.

Children’s clothes and swimwear were reportedly found in his campervan, which caused him to become the lead suspect in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

May is the month that not only marks the anniversary of her disappearance but her birthday too – something her parents say makes things harder.

Every May is tough – a reminder of years passed, of years together lost, or stolen. This year it is particularly poignant as we should be celebrating Madeleine’s 18th birthday. Enough said,” they wrote.

“The COVID pandemic has made this year even more difficult for many reasons but thankfully the investigation to find Madeleine and her abductor has continued.

“We hang on to the hope, however small, that we will see Madeleine again. The COVID pandemic has made this year even more difficult for many reasons but thankfully the investigation to find Madeleine and her abductor has continued.

“We hang on to the hope, however small, that we will see Madeleine again.


And from the same source but one year prior - a treble whammy, pushing the boundaries somewhat, ..

Madeleine disappearance: Kate and Gerry McCann’s triple tragedy

by Amanda Cassidy  06th Jun 2020

The latest update in the gruelling search for their daughter might just be the last. But, for the family of missing Madeleine McCann, more has been lost than just a daughter and sister.

As Kate and Gerry kissed their sleeping babies goodnight and walked the short distance to the tapas bar across from the apartment they were staying in Praia da Luz Ocean Club, they had no clue of the devastation that lay ahead.

A few hours later, their three-year-old daughter had vanished from her bed. It was the beginning of a nightmare that has continued for 13 long years.

The family has hit the headlines again this week as police close in on the prime suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance, a German man who’d been living in that area of the Portuguese Algarve during the McCanns’ holiday.

Police reports have found that the 43-year-old, a convicted rapist and child sex offender allegedly fantasised about abducting and sexually abusing minors in an online chat room in 2013.

He is also being investigated over the disappearance of a five-year-old girl in Germany in 2015. The little girl wandered into a forest to gather firewood during a family camping trip and was never found.


German police now say that they don’t expect to find Madeleine alive. An emotional statement from the McCann family was issued yesterday. “All we have ever wanted is to find her, uncover the truth, and bring those responsible to justice. We will never give up hope of finding Madeleine alive, but whatever the outcome may be, we need to know as we need to find peace.”

But any closure that comes their way is a drop in the ocean compared to the hellish journey this couple has lived through. Kate and Gerry and indeed their twins, Madeleine’s siblings, have suffered a triple tragedy.

They lost their daughter, they were widely blamed (and still are) for being responsible for their daughter’s so-called murder, and they have to live with the fact that they left her alone while they went out with friends that night.

No conversation about the missing little girl ever fails to provoke the question ‘But how could they leave them alone?’

In an interview a year ago, Kate McCann pointed out that she had seen the worst and best of human nature during the past 13 years. The public has supported them and the public has destroyed them.

In any new article about the McCanns, there are endless vicious comments accusing them of killing their daughter, of disposing of her little body and of lying to police.

Most of the controversy was as a result of the man leading the Portuguese inquiry, Goncalo Amaral, publishing a book in which he claimed that Madeleine died in an accident and that her parents covered it up.

The McCanns, both doctors, denied his claims and were involved in a lengthy libel case against him. They were formally cleared as suspects but have lived under the shadow of his claims.


Kate and Gerry were equally hounded over leaving their three sleeping children in an apartment alone.  In fact, no conversation about the missing little girl ever fails to provoke the question ‘But how could they leave them like that?’.

In an interview during the reconstruction of the events of that night, Kate McCann explains how it was a last-minute decision to leave the children and dine at the nearby tapas restaurant as the children were really tired. They went to check on them regularly. They never imagined things could have turned out like this.

But imagine the feelings of guilt associated with such a decision, knowing that you were not there when your child needed you most. Imagine having to live with that every single day…

And then there is the tragedy of pure loss — of having to pack a child’s belongings — her little jelly holiday sandals and colorful sunhat away and leave her behind, of never knowing what had become of your daughter.

A child-shaped hole in the life of Kate and Gerry McCann they can only ever fill with hope. And that’s why they’ve refused to give up, why they have fought for more funding, why they had to rise above the controversy to keep Madeleine’s memory alive.

Maddie would have just turned 17. Her birthday was in May. Her mother still buys her gifts and leaves them wrapped in her pink bedroom. Her siblings are teens too, they also live in the shadow of their missing big sister.

That undoubtedly comes with its own challenges. Peace for the McCanns means being able to grieve their daughter in the correct way and of being able to finally walk away from the same spotlight that attracts trolls, death threats and conspiracy theorists.

Still now, every Sunday, the little church in the village of Praia da Luz dedicates a prayer to Madeleine and to her family. Perhaps now the mystery of the little girl, forever frozen in time, will finally be solved.

The world is waiting.

Image via AFP

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Post by Verdi 25.05.21 16:26

Seeking a different Madeleine

Today, on the second anniversary of her disappearance, Madeleine McCann’s parents tell Emma Loach how a new image of their daughter fuels their hopes of seeing her again

Sunday May 03 2009 The Sunday Times

I became friends with Kate and Gerry McCann last year while filming an ITV documentary for the first anniversary of their daughter Madeleine's disappearance. We have stayed in touch ever since - our children are of similar ages. I've seen them adapt to finding themselves a family of four, without forgetting the missing fifth member for one second. Kate and Gerry have become stronger - more able to live this new life without Madeleine and, crucially, more able to continue the search for her.

Gerry describes how they have adjusted to this new world: " 'Healed' is a bit difficult; 'adapted' is probably the right word. There's still a scar, a deep, deep scar that's kind of knitted at the minute but you still think it might break."

Thoughts about Madeleine are never far away even if Kate and Gerry do try to focus only on the facts they know rather than speculation. Kate explains,"I mean, there's no point in speculating, you know, because that's daft. I'm not saying it's not normal occasionally to speculate but that doesn't help, you know. At the end of the day it's speculation. It's not fact. And it makes you upset."

Kate recognises the importance of spending time thinking about Madeleine, however painful it can sometimes be, "when I remember her and all the things I like about her and how she is with Sean and Amelie and what she means to us. And that's the hardest thing. And then remembering little phrases that she'd say and little facial expressions - that's hard and that's what makes me sad, because I miss Madeleine and nothing can stop the pain of missing her".

As a family they are strong and are managing to live a happy life. The twins Sean and Amelie, toddlers at the time of the abduction, are now four years old and give their parents huge joy. Still, as Gerry says: "We are a happy family, but we're not a complete family . . ."

Alongside the growing strength is the inevitable accompanying guilt that they manage to live a life, go to work and enjoy the twins when the dreadful situation has not changed: Madeleine is still missing. Nothing has changed since 10pm on Thursday, May 3, 2007. But the further away they get from the shock of finding Madeleine had gone, the more they find themselves able to function.

In some ways this disgusts them. In some ways they feel they should still be incapable of operating in this bizarre, horrifying new world where Madeleine has been taken from them. But this is not an option. They have to keep going for the sake of all their children. The twins deserve a happy childhood. And if they don't keep looking for Madeleine, who will?

The twins are growing up and demand happiness from everyone around them. They are now older than Madeleine was when she was taken and are bursting with energy and love - for each other, for their mum and dad and for their older sister. They talk about her every day and include her in all their games.

Amelie now wears her sister's shoes, explaining to Kate that Madeleine's feet will have grown when she comes back so they'll have to buy her new shoes anyway. Kate says: "I honestly believe they're expecting her to come home one day soon. They're very much, 'Well, when Madeleine comes back, we'll share our toys'."

They do not doubt for a second that Madeleine will come back; that she is alive and waiting to be found. There is no evidence to say she is not. Do you give up on your child just because nobody can prove she's still alive, just because the "story" hasn't moved on recently?

This is a life sentence for them. They will never be able to stop looking for their daughter. They will never be able to move on - the deep scar will not heal - until they have an answer: either Madeleine comes home or they know what happened to her. Their belief that she is still alive is not just the wishful thinking of two desperate parents.

Ernie Allen, president of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in Washington, who has advised them, says: "There is hope. Just because your child has been missing for two or five years, or even 10 years, there are still scenarios under which your child is recoverable."

The fact is we don't know who took Madeleine and we don't know who has her now. Even after discussing her abduction for two years, trying to think of every possible scenario, we may not have come up with the reason she was taken.

Eight weeks ago Kate and Gerry asked me to make another film. This time, it would be for the second anniversary of their daughter's disappearance, which falls today.

They never open their doors to film crews or media easily - even friendly ones - and I knew they would have specific reasons to ask me. Whenever they think about doing any publicity, they always ask themselves one question: will this help find Madeleine? So I waited to hear their reasons for letting the cameras in again.

The reasons seemed good. On May 12, Madeleine will be six. Kate and Gerry needed to show people a new image of her, one that reflects who she is today, two years older than when she disappeared.

When Kate and Gerry first told me they were planning to ask the NCMEC to produce an "age progression image" of Madeleine, I was worried. The whole world knows what she looked like before she was taken. Would producing a new image of her confuse people?

It is a risk her parents had to take. Until this image was released we were all looking for a three-year-old girl. Kate and Gerry still receive hundreds of letters each month from people who think they've spotted Madeleine. Some of them even manage to take a photo of the little girl they think is her. But what is striking is how young these girls are - proof that people are looking for a Madeleine who no longer exists. Frozen in age.

Allen explains the power of age-progressed images: "When we started this 10 years ago, the goal was to use technology to keep these cases alive, to provide new hope for parents and new leads for law enforcement, and we said at the time, 'Wouldn't it be great if we could actually find one of these kids?' And we did: we found 900 of them. And in every one of these 900 cases the child had been missing for at least two years."

This age-progression image is not for Kate and Gerry. It's for the people who see Madeleine every day but don't realise who she is. It may even be for Madeleine herself.

Allen has told Kate and Gerry that Madeleine might not even know she is being looked for. She might not know she is with the "wrong" family.

"It's not inconceivable that she's in a classroom somewhere, that she's in somebody's neighbourhood, living next door to some family, or someone may see her in a store or an airport," he says.

He told of a case where a five-year-old child in Texas saw an age-progressed image and told her mother: "That boy's in my class." For days the mother ignored her but her daughter would not give up.

"This five-year-old was so tenacious and so committed that to shut her up the mother called the school principal, who called us. The child had been abducted in Michigan, had his name changed and, after a period of time, enrolled in kindergarten, under the new name, in Texas. That child was recovered and reunited with his family because of the tenacity of one five-year-old."

When Kate and Gerry first saw the age-progressed image of Madeleine, they were upset. It was not their daughter. But then they looked closer, recognised her features, saw their little girl in the six-year-old. Making this new image was a hard thing to do. But it would be a travesty if Madeleine were not found simply because we were all looking for a little girl who had now grown up.

The McCanns show no sign of slowing down. If anything, their search is gathering speed and momentum. Ever since 30,000 pages of Portuguese files were released, when the inquiry was shelved in July last year, they have been able to take control of the search for their daughter. After months of waiting for other people to act, they could be proactive. This has been hugely significant - the feelings of helplessness have receded slightly.

Kate spent six months reading every document in the files, which first had to be translated at a cost of £100,000: "I don't believe anybody has got the motivation that I have and I was desperate to go through this myself because I knew that I would be going through it with a fine-tooth comb. I have spent months and months and months going through it - evenings, weekends." Now, with their new search team - two retired British senior policemen - they are able to take stock of what has already been done and move the investigation forward.

There were many interesting finds within the files and what was missing was just as significant. The lack of Portuguese witnesses was striking.

The dearth of local information was especially important once the search team and Kate found a number of statements from tourists, all noticing a suspicious-looking man hanging around the McCanns' apartment. A disturbing and chilling picture was building up: that the McCanns had been watched in the days before Madeleine was abducted.

Gerry describes reading the statements: "I started to feel quite sick. The thought that we were having a nice time and I was oblivious - didn't notice anything out of sorts - it's pretty gut-wrenching."

There was another important statement that seems to corroborate a sighting by the McCanns' friend, Jane Tanner. On the night Madeleine went missing, Tanner told police about a man she'd seen carrying a small girl away from the apartment at about 9.10pm. It was a chilly evening but there was no blanket covering the child. Her feet were bare beneath her pyjamas.

At the time, Tanner's thoughts had been very much on her own family. She had broken away from dinner at the tapas bar to head back to her apartment because one of her children had not been feeling well. It was only later, when it was discovered that Madeleine was missing, that Tanner remembered the man with the child. The pyjamas were pink, like Madeleine's.

For a long time this was the only information about Madeleine's disappearance that Kate and Gerry had to go on. Then, among the Portuguese files, they found a statement that told of a large family who had been returning to their holiday apartment after an evening out. At about 9.50pm they walked past a man carrying a small blonde child. Their descriptions were very similar to Tanner's.

Kate says: "It does beg the question: I mean, how many people carry their children on a cold night not covered, nothing on their arms or feet, no blanket. Now either there's been two people carrying children in that way who haven't come forward to eliminate themselves or potentially they are related."

This, along with the witness statements telling of a suspicious man, seemed like a breakthrough. The search team felt they had enough information to organise a meaningful reconstruction to be filmed in Praia da Luz with actors and to be put on to their website . Kate and Gerry wanted to show these reconstructions within a documentary in case they triggered someone's memory.

They want to ask all the tourists who were in Praia da Luz in April or May 2007 and all the residents to think again, to try to remember if they saw anything suspicious.

Dave Edgar, who leads the search team, is a former detective inspector with more than 30 years' experience in Cheshire and the RUC. He says that "someone local . . . has the answer to this.

"You don't start an investigation in Morocco or Spain or France, or even Lisbon. This offence happened in Praia da Luz. It's a very self-contained resort and that's where we've started and that's where I think the answer is.

"I don't think it was someone random. In my experience, random just doesn't happen. Someone just doesn't go in, a passer-by, and pick up a child and take it. These things are planned. They may even have been watching the apartment for a week or more."

Arthur Cowley, more than 30 years a detective sergeant in the northwest of England, agrees: "The answer still lies in Praia da Luz and it's important that we focus on Praia da Luz and the surrounding area."

So on this anniversary, like last year, the McCanns are asking for our help - they need the locals and tourists in Praia da Luz to watch the reconstructions and they need all of us to commit to memory the new image of Madeleine as a six-year-old and to keep looking, not to give up on their daughter.

Someone knows something. Kate and Gerry McCann need only one someone to come forward for this whole mystery to unravel.

Emma Loach is the director-producer of Cutting Edge: Madeleine Was Here, to be shown on Thursday on Channel 4

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Post by Verdi 25.05.21 16:32

The Times wrote:Emma Loach is the director-producer of Cutting Edge: Madeleine Was Here, to be shown on Thursday on Channel 4

Video 3 - Cutting Edge: Madeleine Was Here

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