Thursday, 1 November 2007

Moroccan police: Madeleine in Morocco just “doesn't make any sense...”

“Only in Italy, there were around 3.000 Moroccan children and youngsters in the prostitution networks, in 2006”, according to a a senior police officer from Moroccan police: “Almost all cases of other children being brought to Morocco are related with divorce cases, when the father or mother, married in a foreign country, brings them to Morocco.”

A member of “Touche pas à mon enfant”, a Moroccan organization that fights child abuse, confirmed this situation and told SOS Madeleine that he doesn't believe in the possibility that Madeleine was brought to Morocco by a paedophile network: “There are hundreds of blonde children with blue eyes in the Rif area”, he said. Asked to comment about the conclusions of Metodo 3, the Spanish detectives company that allegedly had strong clues about the presence of Madeleine in Morocco, the source from Moroccan police said: “The Spanish only now discovered that there are blonde people in Morocco. Do you think they know our country better than us?”

Paedophilia exists in Morocco, like in many other countries, but it's “Moroccan children that are the target of abusers, many of them foreigners: 43 % or cases reported to Police involve foreign citizens from European countries”, says a report from “Child's Rights Watcher”, an organization set up in 1999 to monitor child abuse.

Several high profile cases, involving European tourist, have been uncovered in the last years. Three French citizens were arrested in Eurika, with five porno movies where they used Moroccan children. “Each child was paid between 18 and 45 euros. We have a 'zero tolerance' for paedophilia, but poverty makes our children an easy prey for those kind of 'tourists'. And the idea of bringing foreign children – Maddie or any otter child – to Morocco, for this, just doesn't make any sense”, the same senior police officer told SOS Madeleine.

Moroccan Intelligence services and local police set up several operations in the Rif area, against drug traffickers, after the first sightings of Madeleine in that country were reported, in early May. A “message” was sent to main drug trafficker networks, telling to check all known criminals “working” in that area, with connections to child prostitution. “If somebody had the child, there will be no way of escaping the 'drug Mafia', they know everything and everybody in that area”, according to a source from Moroccan Intelligence services.

The Rif mountains are home of the main producers of hashish, for the European market. But even this uncommon police operation had no result at all, and until now Moroccan “Sureté Nacionale” denies strongly that any reliable clue or evidence of Madeleine McCann has been found.

The presence of Madeleine in Morocco was also dismissed as not credible by Mark Williams-Thomas, a former policemen and managing-director of WT Associates. The theory of Metodo 3 – Madeleine was abducted by a paedophile gang who stole the child to order – shows "a distinct lack of understanding of paedophiles and how they work", criminal analyst Mark Williams-Thomas told the Daily Mail: "Evidence from what we know about how paedophiles operate would suggest that if Madeleine was abducted by a predatory paedophile the likelihood of her surviving after first 48 hours, are very slim.”

If Madeleine is alive “she would not be out in the open and spotted by general members of the public. She would be hidden away. Even in these remote areas of Morocco, nobody could risk her being seen”, according to Mark William-Thomas. Marita Frenandez, the head of Metodo 3, the company hired by the McCann, told journalists that “it's absolutely sure that Madeleine is alive. (People) Saw the spot in her eye. If it was seen, Madeleine is nor dead.” Metodo 3 also confirmed they have “clues” that can solve the case.

Francisco Marco, Metodo 3's director-general, gave more specific details, including the alleged location of Madeleine, in Morocco, where she was spotted with a 60 years-old-woman.

Meanwhile, reports emerged from British Press, about a nanny that allegedly saw a suspect near the McCann apartment. The suspect was spotted in 2006, one year before Madeleine McCann disappeared, according to the Daily Mail edition of October 30. The nanny called, a few days ago, the hotline that McCann set up in Spain, which is managed by Metodo 3, and told them about this new suspect.

Duarte Levy (Chefchaouen) and Paulo Reis (Lisbon)

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