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The McCanns controlled the media

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The McCanns controlled the media

Post by sharonl on 21.08.11 22:34

Secrets of Kate: Walks were staged Correio da Manhã

Notebooks of Maddie's mother reveal tactics with the British press

27 July 2008

Kate and Gerry McCann have controlled the media reporting their daughter's disappearance. In order not to be criticised by the British Press, Madeleine McCann's parents offered photoshoots, some of them during their usual morning walks – which were apparently routine but turned out to be pre-arranged, as Kate's personal notes reveal.

Get all the exclusive details in the edition of 'Correio da Manhã' this Sunday


Kate managed the news and controlled the English Correio da Manhã

Maddie case Press was manipulated in exchange for photoshoots

27 July 2008
Thanks to 'astro' for translation

The McCann couple took four hours to outline their strategy, went out for walks on request from the British photographers and escaped the Portuguese

Kate and Gerry McCann controlled the British media in the news coverage of their daughter's disappearance. In order to avoid criticism from the English press, Maddie's parents offered photoshoots, some of them during their usual morning walks in the Algarve – which were apparently routine, but previously arranged, as Kate's notes reveal.

"The British journalists were annoyed because they found out too late that I had been in the United Kingdom. It ended up with Justine receiving loads of phone calls and arranging for a photoshoot on the way to the church, to pacify them", Kate writes on the 5th of July, revealing a tactic that was adopted in the first days after the 3-year-old girl disappeared.

"Dress up and go for a walk. It had been requested by photographers and agreed that for sentimental reasons it would be good". This walk happened on the 7th of June, three days after Kate registered that she had been "annoyed" about the presence of Portuguese journalists outside the apartment. Before that, on the 19th of May, the photoshoot for the English newspaper 'Sunday Mirror' was previously arranged: "Us spending time with the twins for the Sunday papers".

In the same notes, Kate expresses distress about the Portuguese and the German journalists. On the 11th of June, in Morocco, after Kate made a positive evaluation of the trip because there were so many photographers present, the doctor remembers "noticing" Portuguese journalists. "We didn't want to give them a story", decided the McCanns, who classify the questions from the Portuguese as "sleazy and unexpected", even after preparation meetings that last "four hours": "I was very angry at a journalist today. I told her not to do so much detective work."

Concerning the editor of the 'Sun' newspaper, on the 11th of July Kate was assured that there would be no "adverse publicity": "She was really nice. Perfect solution", Maddie's mother noted.

Clarence replaced Justine when the tension rose

Clarence Mitchell was the first one to offer his face for the McCanns. He met Gerry on an occasion when the latter was returning from England, at the end of May 2007, at a time when he was part of the Consular Assistance Group, representing the Foreign Office. He took over the couple's defence on the 22nd of May, but returned to England in the mid-summer, when he was replaced by Justine McGuinness, who directed the campaign to search for Madeleine from the 22nd of June onwards.

The tensions between the McCanns and Justine were never evident. But the fact that she abandoned the couple's defence immediately after they were made arguidos and returned to England, remains unexplained.

Now, it becomes clear that the tension came from before. Justine and Gerry had already discussed the honoraries. The advisor wanted to receive overtime and demanded a payment that was above what had initially been agreed.

On the 28th of July, the tension between the family and the spokeswoman was obvious. Kate wrote in her notes that she [Justine] did not have good "interpersonal aptitudes" and that she could even be very "unpleasant". Kate remembered that there had been an argument between Justine and a relative and that Gerry had tried to calm them down. "It all ended well", Kate McCann concluded, but still seriously doubted the advisor's character.

Journalists far away from the house

The McCanns' first days in England were subject to intense media attention. They allowed themselves to be photographed with their children again, after they had agreed exclusives with televisions and newspapers to cover the return.

Days later, Clarence Mitchell opted for another strategy. He agreed with the English journalists that those would never persecute the McCanns again. In exchange, the couple's spokesman would supply fortuitous meetings, and in case the journalists would fail their compromise, he would exclude them from his contact list.

Everyone accepted. When in March CM [Correio da Manhã] tried to speak to the McCanns without going through Clarence Mitchell, we were intercepted by the police. The couple demanded that Portuguese journalists be forbidden from getting close to their house, and their neighbours were advised not to speak.

Robert Murat sues the McCann couple's friends

Robert Murat, the first arguido in the case of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, is going to sue some of the McCann couple's English friends.

According to news in yesterday's edition of 'Sol' newspaper, the Anglo-British citizen is going to advance with complaints over the crimes of perjury and slanderous denunciations, alleging that the English lied in the depositions that they gave to the Polícia Judiciária with the purpose to incriminate him.

Robert Murat, who is going to receive hundreds of thousands of euros in compensation from 11 British newspapers, was made an arguido only 11 days after the little girl disappeared, on the 14th of May 2007, after several friends of Kate and Gerry McCann referred his presence in the Ocean Club apartment on the fateful evening of the 3rd of May 2007, in Praia da Luz.

"WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER" - Rebekah Brooks to David Cameron

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Re: The McCanns controlled the media

Post by lj on 21.08.11 22:50

From the above:

"Kate McCann seriously doubted the advisor's character"

laugh laugh laugh rotfl rotfl rotfl

"And if Madeleine had hurt herself inside the apartment, why would that be our fault?"  Gerry

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Re: The McCanns controlled the media

Post by Gillyspot on 21.08.11 23:11

Interesting in above that it states that Murat was suing the members of the T7. Was that really why Brian Kennedy and (unmentionable person) visited him to sort it out (read into that what you will).

Justine McGuinness did actually sue. Just not Gerry McCann.

She Sued the People for printing what Gerry McCann said. (it is still on their website interestingly).

Oct 7 2007 By Jeff Pickett

EXCLUSIVE MISSING MADDIE: McCANNS' FURY AT PR'S HUGE BILL £350-a-day press expert charged £20k for over time, booze and meals Family's outrage over drain on fund to find missing Maddie

Anguished Gerry McCann sensationally split from the expert masterminding the worldwide hunt for his missing daughter Madeleine after she put in a whopping £20,000 overtime and expenses bill.

Press and PR chief Justine McGuinness charged Gerry and wife Kate £51,000 for 89 days' work.

Her basic fee was £350 a day, making a total of £31,000.

And the rest was made up in overtime payments and expenses - including bar and restaurant bills.

Gerry, 39, lost his rag when he was told the Find Madeleine fund would have to foot the bill.

And McGuinness, 37, parted company with the family after a showdown with Gerry.

A source close to the family said last night: "Everyone at the fund was happy with the way Justine handled herself and the PR. She did a brilliant job.

"But there was a debate over her overtime and expenses bill which came as a surprise to Gerry. He hit the roof.

"He couldn't believe Justine's expenses and overtime were as high as £20,000 for the time she'd been in Portugal.

"She claimed overtime for nights when she had been out drinking and eating with journalists and other people over there.

"Justine was well paid by the fund on a day rate but claimed overtime too along with expenses.

"The family expected her day fee to cover EVERYTHING.

"Then the extra bills came in on top of this and there was a great deal of surprise within the fund."

The source went on: "The fund's managers were completely taken aback when she lodged the claim and immediately phoned Gerry.

"He then spoke to her about it. As part of the agreement to part company he said he would not publicise details of the rift. Kate and Gerry put out a statement thanking her for all her work on the campaign.

"But Gerry was livid because her expenses drained the fighting fund of a chunk of money intended to help find Madeleine."

]McGuinness - who stood as a Lib Dem candidate at the 2005 General Election - was headhunted in June to help the McCanns' crusade to find four-year-old Maddie.

She was picked because of her political background.

And she acted as a spokeswoman and organiser of events to keep the campaign in the news.

Her efforts included getting celebrity backers such as England soccer idol David Beckham and Manchester United's Portuguese maestro Cristiano Ronaldo.

She also organised interviews and photocalls with the couple.

McGuinness advised Gerry and GP Kate, 39, on their audience with the Pope.

And she encouraged cardiologist Gerry to go to Washington in July to learn about the latest techniques for tracing missing kids.

But some critics warned she was making the campaign too much of a slick PR operation. And there were new concerns when when Portuguese police made Kate an official suspect.

The source said: "The McCanns hired a campaigns expert rather than someone to defend their reputations if things went awry.

"Once the Portuguese started pointing the finger at Kate things had to change."

McGuinness disputes the amounts involved. Last night she defended the payments and said: "I parted on good terms with Kate and Gerry and I regard them as my friends.

"They made it very clear to me that they were happy with the work I did." She added: "I sincerely hope Madeleine is found and I wish the McCanns well."

McGuinness quit on September 15 and was replaced by ex-Cabinet Office aide Clarence Mitchell, 46.

Foreign Office chiefs had sent Mitchell to Portugal to advise the McCanns after Maddie vanished from a room she was sharing with two-year-old brother Sean and his twin sister Amelie in the resort of Praia da Luz in May.

But the McCann family was split over his switch to join the Find Madeleine campaign.

The source told The People: "Gerry was the only one who wanted Clarence.

"He was determined to get him after building a strong relationship with him in Portugal. But nobody else wanted him because he had given Kate and Gerry - what some of the family thought of as - questionable advice.

"Clarence advised Kate to take the twins swimming and get pictured in her bathing suit shortly after the search for Madeleine had captured the media's attention. Kate was horrified by the suggestion - but Gerry wanted to go along with Clarence's advice.

"It was only when other family members told Gerry it was the wrong thing to do he backed down.

"The feeling was it sent the wrong message if Kate was pictured lounging by the side of the pool when she is distraught about Madeleine's disappearance." The source added: "Finding Madeleine is Kate and Gerry's No1 priority.

"The Portuguese police investigation has left them numb and they know valuable time's been lost.

"Kate is distraught and spends most of her time sitting in Madeleine's room.

"If it wasn't for Sean and Amelie she would have broken down long ago."

Quite an interesting article and not just for Gerry hitting the roof regarding Justine's Expenses.

Justine won against the People and accepted a donation to the McCanns' fund as payment.

"A public relations expert who helped in the search for Madeleine McCann has accepted a donation to charity over a claim that she overcharged the fund set up to find the missing child.

Justine McGuinness brought libel proceedings in London's High Court over an October 2007 article in The People.

Her solicitor, Amber Melville-Brown, told Mr Justice Eady that Ms McGuinness was the communications strategist for the Find Madeleine Fund from June to September 2007.

The newspaper story alleged that she had charged the fund £20,000 in excess of her agreed fee and that, following a discussion with Gerry McCann in the summer of 2007, she was forced to part company with the fund.

Ms Melville-Brown said: "In fact, Ms McGuinness did not overcharge the fund and indeed bore many of the necessary expenses herself. Neither was she forced to resign.

"As initially agreed with the fund, she left in September 2007 to meet other pre-arranged commitments.

''She felt she had no option but to bring proceedings to ensure that the true position was recognised and that the false allegations were not republished.''

Ms Melville-Brown said MGN Ltd had accepted that the allegations were incorrect and apologised. It agreed to make a donation to an undisclosed charity of Ms McGuinness's choice.

MGN's solicitor, Holly Mason, apologised for the distress and embarrassment caused."

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