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Post by Tony Bennett on 17.08.11 22:55

The first part of the Carter-Ruck letter today demanded the removal of 21 articles, letters or other document from our website, partial removal of another article, and amendments to our Home Page.

The Madeleine Foundation Committee has tonight consulted and agreed to put out the following statement as soon as practicable on our website. The removal of the articles concerned will also take place as soon as practicable:

Statement:

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT REGARDING
THE CONTENTS OF THIS WEBSITE

17 August 2011

Following receipt of a package by Secretary Tony Bennett from Carter-Ruck at 3.35pm on 17 August 2011, alleging that he is in breach of an undertaking he gave to the High Court on 25 November 2009 about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, we are removing many items from our website.

Carter-Ruck’s letter complained about the contents of part of our Home Page, and parts of our article titled ‘The Madeleine McCann mystery and the strange role of Madeira lawyer, Marcos Aragao Correia.

[ NOTE: The letter from Carter-Ruck and Mr Bennett’s reply both dated 17 August 2011 are viewable here:

(These should both be viewable on our website shortly - T.B.). ]

As a result, but without any admission that any of the material is libellous of the McCanns nor that Mr Bennett has breached the terms of his undertaking, we are taking the following action a soon a practicable:

1. Amending our Home Page

2. Removing the entirety of all the other 21 articles about which Carter-Ruck complain ( in whole or part) until further notice, pending the outcome of further correspondence with Carter-Ruck.

A convenient list of the articles we have removed from view are listed below.

We are carefully reviewing each article to consider whether, in each case, it could be considered to contain either libellous material or material by Tony Bennett which could be held to breach his undertaking.

We are very sorry that it has not been possible for you to view some of our articles today. We will be reviewing the situation regularly and will make announcements on our Home Page concerning the removed articles as soon as we can.

- Committee of The Madeleine Foundation, 17 August 2011



LETTERS THE MCCANNS WANT REMOVED FROM OUR WEBSITE

To:

Alan Johnson, March 2010

Theresa May, July 2010

MF Members and Supporters, July 2010

Carter-Ruck, August 2010

David Cameron, October 2010

Home Affairs Select Committee, October 2010

Transworld, February 2011

Dominic Mohn at The Sun, February 2011

David Cameron, May 2011

Carter-Ruck, June 2011

DCI Andy Redwood of Scotland Yard, July 2011.

The other articles and items the McCanns want removed:

1. By Tony Bennett re Clarence Mitchell

2. Madeleine Foundation Goncalo Amaral leaflet

3. Madeleine Foundation Newsletter No. 7

4. Article about Goncalo Amaral's book being unbanned

5. Article about Raymond Hewlett

6. Article about the BBC's 'Inside Out' programme

7. '163 Questions' article

8. Remainder of Barbara Nottage's article about the impossibility of the abduction hapoening in no more than 3-4 minutes

9. By Tony Bennett re the McCanns' 'Investigation Hotline'

10. MF Policy Statement

11. MF Press Release: Buying Kate McCann's book won't help to find Madeleine

12. Article about the contents of Dr Kate McCann's book



FINAL NOTE: There'll still be a lot of very interesting stuff left on our website even after all this culling!
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Post by Guest on 18.08.11 8:26

What is wrong with the homepage? and why do they not want people writing to DCI Andy Redwood?
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Post by PeterMac on 18.08.11 8:30

Stella wrote:.... why do they not want people writing to DCI Andy Redwood?
Why do you think. They are clearly TERRIFIED that he may find something.

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Post by Guest on 18.08.11 8:35

We should have a link in the Library with just his name and contact details and no other comments if anyone should feel the need to write to them. Madeleine Foundation statement tonight re Carter-Ruck & the McCanns  181154

Doing it right now...
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Post by Big Vern on 18.08.11 11:37

I know it's easy for me to say this Tony as I'm not in the direct line of fire but hasn't the time come to stand up to these people?

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Post by Tony Bennett on 18.08.11 12:01

@Big Vern wrote:I know it's easy for me to say this Tony as I'm not in the direct line of fire but hasn't the time come to stand up to these people?
Big Vern, the analogy is quite a good one, I am in the direct line of fire and it remains to be seen whether my shield is good enough to withstand the bullets.

If you look carefully at page 5 of Carter-Ruck's letter of 12 August 2011 (link here: ), it states that "...while we would naturally urge you to remove the publications now complained of (as set out in the attached schedule), and to desist from publishing any similar material, we must make it clear that our clients have resolved that in any event it will be necessary to commence Contempt of Court proceedings against you".

Thus in spite of our having removed even more material from our website than the McCanns have asked for, and despite the forum-owner here removing my 42 allegedly libellous postings from public view on this forum, I am likely to get a Contempt of Court summons any day now and will in effect have two simple choices:

A. Accept that I'm in contempt. apologise, promise again not to criticise the McCanns, pay Carter-Ruck's reasonable costs, and take my punishment, whether fine, seizure of assets or a spell in one of HM's prisons - or

B. Defend each and every posting, letter, article, statement, MF newsletter etc. to which the McCanns object and claim to be defamatory of them, plus make a formal application for the terms of the undertaking to be varied, and settle down for what will probably be a long-drawn out trawl in front of a Judge through all the evidence and whether I can or cannot rely on the defences of e.g. 'justification 'and 'fair comment' for the comments I have made - and probably have to pay vastly increased costs at the end of all that if I lose i.e. if the Judge finds that any of my comments are contemptuous of an undertaking given to the High Court.

That's my choice now in a nutshell.

In chess terms, it's the McCanns' next move.
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Post by Big Vern on 18.08.11 12:05

Perhaps it's time to start a fund for you so that you can choose option B.

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Post by espeland on 18.08.11 12:15

But if this is taken to court, won't you be able to call the McCanns to give evidence?

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Post by Tony Bennett on 18.08.11 12:52

@Big Vern wrote:Perhaps it's time to start a fund for you so that you can choose option B.

That's a very kind thought, but having considered this, I do not wish for a fund to be set up. On the last occasion when I had to pay £440 Court costs as a result of signing the undertaking, four people very kindly came forward and between them paid about two-thirds of those costs. That was very kind of them. If as a result of the McCanns' contempt proceedings I am saddled with a large sum of either damages or costs, then at that stage I would of course appreciate help in meetinmg those costs.
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Post by Tony Bennett on 18.08.11 12:57

@espeland wrote:But if this is taken to court, won't you be able to call the McCanns to give evidence?

No, but if this case proceeds, then they will have to give evidence - for example, Carter-Ruck say in their letters that my activities 'harm the search for Madeleine'. That will entitle me or my lawyer to cross-examine them about the nature of their search e.g. why they chose two crooks as investiagtors who were both sent to prison as a result of crimes or alleged crimes - Antonio Jimenez and Kevin Halligen. The McCanns' alleged failure to follow up calls to their investigation hotline would come into it, as would their habit of giving stories about possible suspects to the media, thus giving suspects public notice that they were under suspicion - not to mention Brian Kennedy allegedly interfering with witnesses.
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Post by espeland on 18.08.11 13:29

@Tony Bennett wrote:
@espeland wrote:But if this is taken to court, won't you be able to call the McCanns to give evidence?

No, but if this case proceeds, then they will have to give evidence - for example, Carter-Ruck say in their letters that my activities 'harm the search for Madeleine'. That will entitle me or my lawyer to cross-examine them about the nature of their search e.g. why they chose two crooks as investiagtors who were both sent to prison as a result of crimes or alleged crimes - Antonio Jimenez and Kevin Halligen. The McCanns' alleged failure to follow up calls to their investigation hotline would come into it, as would their habit of giving stories about possible suspects to the media, thus giving suspects public notice that they were under suspicion - not to mention Brian Kennedy allegedly interfering with witnesses.



If the McCanns don't realise this, no doubt CR will advise them. There is so much you can bring up for them to answer.......



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Post by aiyoyo on 22.08.11 15:32

@espeland wrote:
@Tony Bennett wrote:
@espeland wrote:But if this is taken to court, won't you be able to call the McCanns to give evidence?

No, but if this case proceeds, then they will have to give evidence - for example, Carter-Ruck say in their letters that my activities 'harm the search for Madeleine'. That will entitle me or my lawyer to cross-examine them about the nature of their search e.g. why they chose two crooks as investiagtors who were both sent to prison as a result of crimes or alleged crimes - Antonio Jimenez and Kevin Halligen. The McCanns' alleged failure to follow up calls to their investigation hotline would come into it, as would their habit of giving stories about possible suspects to the media, thus giving suspects public notice that they were under suspicion - not to mention Brian Kennedy allegedly interfering with witnesses.



If the McCanns don't realise this, no doubt CR will advise them. There is so much you can bring up for them to answer.......



I suspect mccanns are using CR formidable reputation to threaten TB just to strike him in fear over possible financial lost. IF they will proceed anyway as CR claimed, then what's the point of intimidating TB to remove articles. How can they possibly expect TB to comply when complying or not will make no difference to their malicious intention?

I would be surprised if they will go all the way because cross examination by TB lawyer will bring them plenty bad publicity and they wont necessary win. In fact it has the potential to backfire on them for a simple reason they have taken suppression of TB's right to freedom of expression to the extreme - in other words they are too radical about it. I doubt any Court would take kindly to that, unless they're confident they can influence judges using their connection of course.

If it comes to that, TB's defence lawyer could also question them about the FUND - did they take on TB using the fund thus knowing they don't have to pay from their own pocket? And their allegation about people harming the search for Maddie - what had they done so far - how much of the fund was paid to detectives vs what was spent on legal cost to sue people? These are all legitimate questions TB defence team can ask them.

In addition, team TB could inform court mccanns case is under review and until that verdict is ready mccanns' theory is as valid as people's theory taking in consideration Police files.

They also have to consider the eventuality that if court should rule in favour of TB allowing also for TB application to relax his undertakings then the mccanns will lose more than just cost of two set of legal fees - can they face that?

Look at the outcome of the book injunction they took against Amaral using another formidable lawyer ID - they lost naturally.
When they lose the libel, looking likely that way, that can be cited against them as well by TB's defence team.
If the Portugal Court should deem Amaral's book not defamatory, can their charges against TB still hold is something they cant afford to neglect to consider?


The way I see it either way they choose, it's win win situation for TB.
If they should take it all the way they risk it backfire on them - in that case it will be a blessing in disguise for TB because his application to alter the undertaking might be granted.

If they refrain because too many negatives at stake for them, then it means TB is at liberty to exercise his right to freedom of expression. In that case, imo TB should still apply for relaxation to his undertaking to prevent mccanns using that as an excuse to harrass TB thus hampering him from his campaign work.
TB could cite this "contempt of court" threat from them as a basis for his application because this is proof the mccanns have no qualm to harrass TB and suppress his right to a voice as and when their lunacy urges them.
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Post by Guest on 22.08.11 15:42

If anyone is guilty of harming the search for Madeleine, it is the McCann's themselves and from day one. They went against Police advice and told the world she had quite a unique mark on one eye, which would single her out.
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Post by aiyoyo on 22.08.11 15:56

Stella wrote:If anyone is guilty of harming the search for Madeleine, it is the McCann's themselves and from day one. They went against Police advice and told the world she had quite a unique mark on one eye, which would single her out.

Yeap, according to the crime profiler PB if Maddie didnt die in the apt she would have been killed by her captor after the mccanns told the world Maddie's eye defect 'cause there is no way the captor is going to risk his capture because of that.
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Post by Guest on 22.08.11 16:06

I know this might sound like a silly question. But is there a big law firm in London who fances their chances at taking on the likes of Carter Ruck on a possible pro bono basis, but could be big bucks, all in the name of justice and getting CR's face wiped off the face of this earth ?

There must be a big competitor out there who would just love a chance at taking their portfolio away from them..

Look what Erin Brockovich managed to pull off in the face of adversity !!!

There must be some good guys out there with a conscience.
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Post by Miraflores on 22.08.11 16:10

Stella wrote:If anyone is guilty of harming the search for Madeleine, it is the McCann's themselves and from day one. They went against Police advice and told the world she had quite a unique mark on one eye, which would single her out.

At a bit of a tangent to the above posting but it made me think:

Have the McCanns ever gone in person to check out a supposed sighting of Madeleine? There was the early one in Belgium and they went to ....... Spain. There was the recent one in India, which was made up anyway, where they decided from a photo, or so we were told, that it wasn't Madeleine.

They did go to Morocco and there was the little girl in Morocco, who turned out not to be Madeleine. Anyone remember the timescale for that? My memory is that they went before the sighting.

If it had been my child who had gone missing, I would have followed up as many sightings as I physically could, all the while hoping and praying it was her, but at the same time, trying not to get too excited in case my hopes were dashed......
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Post by Tony Bennett on 22.08.11 16:58

Stella wrote:If anyone is guilty of harming the search for Madeleine, it is the McCann's themselves and from day one. They went against Police advice and told the world she had quite a unique mark on one eye, which would single her out.
If this ever gets before a contempt of court judge, the McCanns might find themselves facing some awkward questions about why they harmed the search for Madeleine by rushing to the media to get their front-page stories about new suspects or 'persons of interest', thus notifying those very suspects or 'persons of interest' to go to ground and hide.

If, that is, half of these suspects or 'persons of interest' ever existed
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Post by PeterMac on 22.08.11 17:27

Stella wrote:SNIP There must be some good guys out there with a conscience.
There are. But none of them are solicitors !

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Post by pauline on 22.08.11 18:14

Actually petermac, while I am an admirer of your posts I dont think all legal people are greedy or ethics -less.

I think stella's point is good - there has to be a lawyer who cares about freedom of speech which is a very important issue. And it doesn't have to be a big firm, a competitor of carter Ruck.

This could be a great case for a lesser known barrister who would do it on a pro bono basis - if he/she wins think of the career implications. Its not just that he/she would get paid for the case, but some of the legal profession would be delighted to see carter Ruck defeated in court and they would be happy to engage this public spirited and talented young barrister.

here in Ireland, I understand quite a few pro bono bases happen. For example representing parents in medical negligence cases where a baby has been born with severe handicap. I have a young barrister giving me free advice at the moment on an issue affecting a very sick relative.

I strongly believe carter Ruck would not want to go to court given that at long last their clients would have to answer questions.
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Post by Gillyspot on 22.08.11 20:27

I also do not believe Carter Ruck are infallible.

There is obviously the Trafigura case where they lost (before court I am sure) but there are others.

One I have found is Michael Napier V Private Eye

"Thanks to some aggressive solicitors and timorous judges, prior restraint is now a flourishing industry. If lawyers get a whiff that one of their clients is about to be embarrassed, late in the evening they contact a duty judge - often one who has no experience of libel or media law. And the judge, reached down a phone line while eating his dinner and half-watching Coronation Street, errs on the side of caution. The newspaper may not even be aware of this "hearing without notice", still less have a chance to argue its case.

Eye readers will need no reminding of the super-injunction obtained by Messrs Carter-Fuck, on behalf of former Law Society president Michael Napier, to stop us reporting that he'd been officially censured for breaching conflict of interest rules. "Freedom to report the truth is a precious thing both for the liberty of the individual and for the sake of wider society," the court of appeal said when it found in our favour after a five-month legal tussle. These noble sentiments clearly failed to impress some high court judges who have carried on injuncting like billy-o."

This is from http://gerrymccan-abuseofpower-humanrights.blogspot.com/2009/10/carter-ruck-and-super-injunctions.html

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Post by aiyoyo on 23.08.11 9:12

@pauline wrote:

I strongly believe carter Ruck would not want to go to court given that at long last their clients would have to answer questions.

Me too, I believe mccanns would not want to be before Court Judge answering questions on OATH unless they are suicidal or their greed got the better of them.

Pro bono lawyers may be easier to come by for victims of accidents, medical negligence, and unlawful work dismissal and such likes because these are cases bearing more than 1/2 the chance of winning thus fees on winning.
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Post by Guest on 23.08.11 10:17

But we have evidence from the Police files and names of people to support their evidence. Martin Grime, Lee Rainbow and Stuart Prior. We also have the strong evidence of foul play in the creche records which only needs an expert analysis to confirm this. We have the ammunition, we just need the Erin Brockovich !!!
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Post by aiyoyo on 23.08.11 11:42

Stella wrote:But we have evidence from the Police files and names of people to support their evidence. Martin Grime, Lee Rainbow and Stuart Prior. We also have the strong evidence of foul play in the creche records which only needs an expert analysis to confirm this. We have the ammunition, we just need the Erin Brockovich !!!

The creche record is best left out b/c that's a grey area one since according to Amaral the first thing Police have to do is to establish the last time Maddie was seen and that was put down to evening of May3rd by Payne. So as far as the police records are concerned the creche was not a contentious issue and Maddie met her ill fate post DP's visit. Unless the SY team proved the creche record to be otherwise which I doubt they will spend too much time on that unless they've other evidence of an early than May3rd demise.
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