Saturday, 2 June 2007

Reasons for another delay and news to be published soon

The Press Conference I referred, on my previous post, wasn't officially confirmed and didn't took place. But I had it confirmed and, one of my sources, a high-ranking Polícia Judiciária (Portuguese CID) office, minutes before I published my previous post, vonfirmed they were preparing a Press Conference but, questioned about the hour, he told me: "I don't know yet".

I couldn't update my page and my blog - and I apologise for that! - because yesterday night I had to rush (for the third time this week!!) to hospital with my 85 years old father. He is going through a very difficult situation, because his much loved dog (his best friend, for the last 10 years!!!) a small pekinois, was mauled, in front of his eyes, by a pit bul, last Sunday. I started a campaign to ask Portuguese Government to issue a law similar to British Dangerous Dogs Act(1991). This is the English version of that page.

So, this is the reason why I failed to make a follow-up of the story about the Press Conference. I have some indications that, when the Press Conference was being prepared, new developments made the Portuguese Police (with full knowledge of the British liaison officers) to postpone the realise of the information.

I'll post, in the next two hours:

1) A copy of the report send to British Police by Mrs. Mari Olli, the Norwegian lady that says she saw Madeleine MacCann at a gas station, near Tarifa, in Morocco(*);

2) Main news published by Portuguese Press, for the last three days, about Madeleine's abduction;

(*) Just a note: The Mail on Sunday is so culturally biased against Portuguese, that they published a small headline, in this story, saying: “Mari Olli says she repeatedly phoned police in Portugal”.

But if you read the story until the end, Mrs. Mari Olli is quoted by Mail on Sunday, as saying this: “I am very sure it was Madeleine. I walked into the petrol station and saw the little girl standing there. She looked sad. When the man saw me looking at them he turned away, so I couldn't see his face. It's very strange. If it was me with a child there, I would hold their hand, but this man was a metre away from her. At 6pm the next day I turned on the news in Spain and got a real shock, because it was definitely her. All that evening I was physically sick. I was calling all the police, but no one wanted to talk to me. I was phoning the Spanish police about 20 times. We then phoned Leicestershire police, who took my report and said it was a 'very strong observation'. But since then nobody has phoned me back.”

I already file a complain with the Press Complaints Commission about this, that I consider a serious breach of the Code of Pratice of British Press.

Paulo Reis
Journalist (Press Card nº 734)
Gazeta Digital - News and Opinion in English, Portuguese and Chinese
Personal Blog: "Zero Tolerance for Killer Dogs"