Friday, 28 September 2007

McCann couple refuses to take a lie detector test



“We know that the lie detector is not accepted by Portuguese authorities, so the McCann don't want to be submitted to a test”, Clarence Mitchell, the former Media Monitoring Unit director and spokesman for Gerry and Kate McCann told, yesterday, to Portuguese daily “24 Horas”. The newspaper asked if the McCann were willing to take a lie detector test, organized and sponsored by the newspaper.

Thursday, 27 September 2007

Madeleine : British mercenaries in action in Portugal, Morocco and Spain

Private investigators unconnected to Control Risk Group” hired by the McCann couple “are believed to be already working in Morocco, Portugal and Spain”, helping in the search of Madeleine McCann, according to The Times. Those “private investigators” are “freelance” former member of British Special Forces and, as a source close to the McCann’s legal team told the Daily Mail, "you wouldn't tangle with some of them. They're not pastry chefs, let's put it that way."

Gerry and Kate hired, in May, the Control Risk Group, a private security company with 600 employees all over the world, most of them former Special Air Service soldiers, MI5 and MI6 agents. Reports in the British Press said they had teams working in Portugal, Morocco, Spain, Belgium and Switzerland, looking for Madeleine McCann and “doing some things that the Portuguese police can’t do.”

Private investigation of a crime, in Portugal, is also a crime, as the president of Portuguese Judges Union told The Times. Antonio Martins said that the McCann “could be charged with 'obstruction of justice' if prosecutors find evidence of a parallel investigation,”

"If it's nor Madeleine, it's her twin sister” or “it's not 100 % certain"?



Clara Torres, the Spanish woman that took the picture of a young girl being carried on the back of a woman, in a road in Morocco, told Spanish newspapers that she was at a bus, “driving at 60 km per hour” - a speed that makes very difficult to get any clear picture of people walking on the other side of the road. “The bus was driving to Tétuan”, she told to “20 Minutos”. She was accompanied by her fiancée, on August 31. After she heard about several new reports in the British Press, she took a better look at the pictures and realized that the girl seemed to be Madeleine McCann.

If it's not Madeleine, than it's her twin sister” she told Spanish Press. Immediately after taking the picture, Clara Torres and the fiancée tout it could be Madeleine. But than they discarded the possibility and they didn't even talked about this with Clara's parents, that were at a second mini-bus, just behind their vehicle.

After sending the picture to Spanish police, who told them that it will take some time to analyse it, Clara Torres and his fiancée went to the British Embassy, with a lawyer, on the morning of September 24. They gave a copy of the picture to be send to Scotland Yard and talked on the phone with one of McCan's lawyer who, after seeing the picture, told the Spanish couple that he was “absolutely sure” the girl was Madeleine McCann.

Following the advice of her lawyer, Clara Torres changed her initial statement - “If it is not Madeleine McCann, than she has a twin sister” - to a more soft approach. Speaking to The Times, later, Clara Torres admitted that “although it’s not 100 per cent certain, there’s a strong possibility it could be Madeleine and if it is it could provide a twist to everything that has happened.”

Paulo Reis & Duarte Levy

Version Française

Moroccan picture: It's NOT Madeleine McCann



The girl seen in Morocco by Spanish tourist Clara Torres, who took a picture of a family walking near a road, is a Moroccan citizen, called Bushra Binhisa. She lives in Zinat, she is four of five years old and part of her family lives in Moleenbeek, Belgium. The attached picture shows Bushra Binhisa with her grandfather, Hamid Bisnhisa.

Correction: The name of the girl is Bouchra Benaissa. In the picture, Bouchra with his father, Ahmed Benaissa, an olive farmer. Bouchra parents are Ahmed Ben Mohamed Benaissa et Hafida Achkar.

Paulo Reis & Duarte Levy

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Fourth witness says she saw Madeleine in Morocco


(click to see all enlarged pictures)

Clara Torres, a Spanish citizen, took a picture from a Moroccan family, on August 31, where a blonde girl that looks like Madeleine can be seen. The Spanish Radio Cope revealed that the picture was taken on August 31, in a road near the city of Tanger. When she heard about the two new witnesses that came forward, in the last three days, referring that they have seen Madeleine, in May, in Morocco, Clara Torres decided to send a copy of the picture to Spanish Police, who sent it immediately to Interpol.

A source from the head office of Moroccan Police told us that the “Sureté Nacional” (Moroccan Intelligence Services) has already identified the man that was helping the family carrying their bags and they found that it's a family of Moroccan immigrants that lives in Europe. Moroccan intelligence services keep on investigating the last sightings, according to the same source.

But the news about investigations by the Control Risk Group, a private security company hired in May by the McCann to do “some things that the Portuguese police can’t do”, according to The Times, which has already teams in place in Portugal, Spain and Morocco, weren't well received by Moroccan authorities: “If we have in our territory those 'private investigators', some kind of mercenaries, we will consider it a violation of our national sovereignty and it's better for those 'investigators' that we don't get them...”

Three new witnesses in four days

The Daily Mail reveals the existence on one more witness – the third to come forward in the last days – that also saw Madeleine McCann in Morocco, in May. The non-identified woman is a Spanish citizen and she told Daily Mail that she was driving with her husband, in the city of Zaio, when she saw Madeleine McCann being “dragged” by a Muslim woman: “She said she told her husband to stop the car. I shouted 'Stop! It's Madeleine, the missing girl.' But by the time we pulled over and ran back to where she had crossed, they had both vanished."

Later, the non-identified Spanish woman tried to talk with Spanish and Portuguese Police, but both police forces refused to take her statement and told her “that Madeleine was presumed to be dead.” The Spanish woman told the Daily Mail: “I'm sure I saw her as I have the image of the girl imprinted on my mind. I saw a Muslim woman holding a girl by the hand. The girl was wearing a skirt and short-sleeved top, with hat on and her hair tied up. A gust of wind blew up the hat and I saw that it was Madeleine McCann.”

Mari Olli: Madeleine had “blue pyjamas”

Two days ago, UK newspapers wrote that a British citizen told Police, in May, he saw a "lost-looking' young girl at a petrol station in Marrakesh, just near the same place where Mari Olli also spotted Madeleine Mccann. Mari Olli is a Norwegian retired social worker living in Spain since 2005 and married with Ray Pollard, from Groby, Leicester. Mr. Ray Pollard told newspapers he was convinced his wife really saw Madeleine Mccann: "She is adamant the girl was Madeleine. She is absolutely convinced it was her. But we have heard nothing” from Police, he complained

Mari Olli saw Madeleine on the morning of May 9 and only when she came back to Spain she realized that the girl she saw was Madeleine, because there was no TV in the place where she was holidaying. She reported it to the Leicestershire Police and she was latter contacted by Portuguese detectives.

Mrs Pollard referred that Madeleine was wearing “blue pyjamas” whe she saw her at a gas station shop near Hotel Ibis Palmeraie. But Moroccan authorities confirmed that they seized the video from the CCTV camera at that shop and sent a copy to Portuguese Police. The images only show Mrs. Mari Olli buying some items, and there is no child among the clients, according to a source form the head office of Moroccan police.

Gerry McCann encouraged with the sightings

These last sightings in Morocco gave Gerry McCann a "feeling of 'encouragement at a renewed focus on the hunt for his daughter”, writes the Daily Mail. At the same time, “police in Leicestershire said there is not sufficient evidence to charge him or his wife Kate”, according also to Daily Mail.

Morocco is the third-placed country, in terms of reports about Madeleine's sightings. In Portugal, Police investigated were 252 sightings, between May 3 and September 11. In the island of Malta, there were 11 sightings of Madeleine McCann according to the Mail on Sunday. A detailed report of one of those sightings was published by the Sun, on June 22: “A British tourist told last night how he saw a child resembling Maddie McCann in Malta — and heard an Arab-looking man tell her in English: 'Get up, little girl'.

Ray Roberts, 49, was in Sliema when he saw the girl wearing what appeared to be a jet black wig. She was out late at night with the man, in his 40s, and a younger woman. When the child tripped, the man — who was grasping her arm — barked at her in broken English: “Get up, little girl.” The couple then ran off up a side street with her.”

The Welsh tourist, a heating engineer from Anglesey, North Wales, who was on holiday with wife Norma, 48, told The Sun that they both have since given statements before investigating magistrate Miriam Haymann, appointed by authorities in Malta to investigate the many sightings of Madeleine. But later, on the same day the interview was published, an official statement from Malta Police declared that “police deny that this man (Ray Roberts) has in fact filed a report to the police, or has given a statement before the magistrate”.

Paulo Reis & Duarte Levy

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Morocco Police and Madeleine' sightings: Witnesses reports had no consistency

“We worked in close cooperation with the Portuguese police, either directly or through Interpol. We investigated several reports of witnesses and even ransom requests that Portuguese police sent us. There is no evidence that the child has came to Morocco”, a source from the office of the head of national police, in Morocco, told us.

Mari Olli, the “Norwegian tourist” that saw Madeleine in Morocco, is married with Ray Pollard, who was born and raised in Groby, close to Glenfield Hospital, where Gerry McCann has been working since 2000. The McCann couple moved from Glasgow to the city of Leicester in that same year and bought a house at Rothley, close to Groby, 1½ years ago.

Moroccan police said also that Mari Olli made a mistake, when she identified the gas station where she and her husband stopped, on their way to catch the ferry to Spain, as being close to the train station. This was the the first information relayed to Portuguese Police. When Portuguese Police contacted the Moroccan Police, they were informed that it wasn't possible, because the shop from that gas station was out of service.

After several contacts between Portuguese Police and Mrs Mari Olli, it was explained that the gas station she referred was near the Hotel Ibis Palmeraie, not the Hotel Ibis Moussafir, both in Marrakesh. Moroccan Police checked the CCTV cameras from the shop at the gas station near Ibis Plameraie, did the same with the CCTV cameras from both hotels and seized the videos.

In the video from the shop at the gas station, according to the same source from Moroccan Police, Mrs Mari Pollard is seen coming inside the shop and buying water and other small items. But there is no child at all, in the images taken inside the shop. Also, in the videos from CCTV cameras at both hotels there is no child that looks like Madeleine.

Further questioning to the employees of both gas stations and hotels produced “no evidence at all”, according to the Moroccan Police, about the presence of a four-years-old blonde girl. “ We investigated in detail every report and information, including the ransom notes, we checked CCTV cameras from Tanger's port and Marrakesh airport, we questioned passengers and workers and there was nothing that could give consistence to the possibility that Madeleine has been in Morocco”, said the source form local police.

Several reports from British Press and quote Mari Olli as saying that “the girl was wearing pale blue pyjamas”- but Madeleine was dressed with pink pyjamas the night she disappeared, just like the ones that Gerry and Kate show in the picture above. In the email that she sent to British Police – and, later, she forwarded a copy to Portuguese journalists – she refers also to “clear blue pyjamas”, with “some pattern on the top, trousers little darker.” But other newspapers mention that she said the girl was using pink pyjamas. Others, don't have any reference to the colour of the pyjamas.

She told the Media she saw the blonde girl around 10.00 am, on Wednesday, May 9. As she was on holidays in a place without TV, she knew nothing about Madeleine's disappearance. Only after she was back in Spain she knew about what happened in Praia da Luz. (to be continued)

Duarte Levy (Huelva) & Paulo Reis (Algarve)

Monday, 24 September 2007

Dai Davies (*) Director of Selectamark Consultancy: Portuguese Police is incompetent..


(CLICK IN THE PICTURE TO ENLARGE)
Dai Davies: "I was amazed at how close their apartment was to the tapas restaurant"

Sunday Mirror:
Police here have given up looking for poor Maddie

By Dai Davies (*)
23/09/2007

In my 38 years of police and private security work all over the world I've never known anything like the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

To the outsider it has all the ingredients of a classic Agatha Christie-style whodunit - but in reality it's far more complex and heartbreaking, because it involves the disappearance of a little girl.

I spent a week in Praia da Luz where Madeleine went missing, "walking the shop floor" as I call it, going over the available evidence and unearthing some startling new information about the case. And in what will surely be another hammer-blow to the McCanns' hopes of finding their little daughter, I've discovered from lengthy talks with my barrister contact that Portuguese investigators have unofficially abandoned the hunt for Madeleine's alleged abductor.

There is now NO detective work being carried out by Portuguese police to link anyone other than the McCanns to Maddie's disappearance. Officially, they say they're continuing the search for an abductor. But their policy is now to only respond to sightings reported to them by Europol and Interpol.

The officers leading the investigation are pinning their hopes on the DNA evidence, getting some sort of confession from the McCanns or their friends, or finding Madeleine's body.

They remain convinced of her parents' guilt, apparently unwilling to consider another scenario, even as their "house of cards" case collapses around them. Another fresh revelation that undermines the Portuguese effort is that police also failed to take DNA samples from Madeleine's little brother Sean, two, and his twin sister, Amelie, until their parents were made "arguidos", or suspects, just over two weeks ago. This failure has seriously undermined the whole forensic case against the McCanns. It means early forensic work is flawed and needs to be re-examined. A process that could take months.

Evidence gathered by the Portuguese police against the McCanns which we have learned about in the past couple of weeks depends entirely on forensic tests, including DNA evidence, so-called bodily fluids and hair. Yet I have found that evidence has been fatally flawed through their own incompetence. The apartment was also not sealed off properly, meaning any evidence was contaminated from the outset.

Also, I can now see the McCanns in no way abandoned their kids, as some have suggested. I was amazed at how close their apartment was to the tapas restaurant. After just a few hours it was also possible to dispel some of the slurs that have been levelled at the McCanns. Gerry did not call Sky TV before he called the police, as the Portuguese media has claimed. Police now know this was done by Gerry's sister, Philomena, in Glasgow. But they have allowed that rumour to fester.

The McCanns are also deeply religious, yet the Portuguese police want us to believe they have disposed of their daughter's body at sea or buried it in unconsecrated ground.

The police now need to halt their campaign to pin this awful crime on two innocent people and bring in new officers for a complete overhaul with fresh eyes. It's back to square one.

MY FOUR THEORIES

1. Maddie was snatched by an opportunist paedophile. He only planned to abuse her but panicked, possibly strangled her and took the body. Profile: White male, 20-35, single, lives with mother. Known to police, knew resort.

2. A planned abduction, plotted in UK, in which she was "snatched to order" by a paedophile gang. Profile: British, male or female, 20-40, living alone.

3. Someone holding a grudge against the McCanns. Profile: Impossible to estimate, but likely to be more than one person.

4. Snatched by local childless couple. Profile: Portuguese, 30-45.

I am afraid to say it is most likely Maddie is dead. And I fear the failure of the Portuguese investigation could lead to the shadow of suspicion hanging over the McCanns for years to come.










Police is checking Kate and Gerry' trips to Spain (follow-up)

McCann couple “disappeared” for two hours

A source from “Comisaría General de la Policia Judicial” (Spanish CID) confirmed today that investigations related with the disappearance of Madeleine took place in the Spanish province of Andaluzia, more exactly at Huelva. After an informal meeting between inspectors from criminal departments of both police forces, the investigation and searches were concentrated on the itineraries the McCann have chosen, when they drive to the city of Huelva, Spain, on August 3, and on several persons who have direct connections with the couple (to be continued)

The fact that there is period of two hours, during which Spanish Police wasn't able to find traces of the McCann couple and the hired car, aroused some suspicion with the PJ, reinforced with the presence of the Renault Scenic in some specific places, without justification. The McCann hired car appears in several videos, seized by Spanish Police.

The day the McCann choose to go to Huelva, to campaign for Madeleine – with leaflets only in Portuguese – is also considered “strange” by Portuguese Police. Huelva has a unique holiday on August 3 and the all people concentrates in downtown, in what it's called “Feria Colombina” celebrating the departure of Colombo to discover America. Shopping malls and most commercial activities close, including churches and the cathedral, where the McCann wanted to go to pray, as they told to the Press.

To campaign and distribute leaflets, with the pictures of Madeleine, in Huelva, seem to be useless: for all over the city, the Municipal Council had posted giant pictures of the missing child. The McCann went to Huelva without the usual media “circus”. The day before, Gerry McCann had a “stomach bug” and cancelled several activities for the campaign to find Madeleine.

And the Media attention was concentrated at the most recent sighting of Madeleine, in Tongres, Belgium, the day before August 3, when Gerry and Kate went to Huelva. A woman, a child therapist, told police she was sure she saw Madeleine McCann at a restaurant near the border with Holland. Belgium police found the couple that was with the child and confirmed it wasn't Madeleine, the child that disappeared from the Ocean Cub resort, at Praia da Luz, on May 3. (to be continued)

Duarte Levy (Espanha) and Paulo Reis (Algarve)

Version Française

Sunday, 23 September 2007

McCann couple “disappeared” for two hours in Spain

Police checked the McCann trip to Huelva

A source from “Comisaría General de la Policia Judicial” (Spanish CID) confirmed today that investigations related with the disappearance took place in the Spanish province of Andaluzia, more exactly at Huelva. After an informal meeting between inspectors from criminal departments of both police forces, the investigation and searches were focused on the itineraries the McCann have chosen, when they drive to the city of Huelva, Spain, on August 3, and on several persons who have direct connections with the couple

(to be continued)

Duarte Levy (Espanha) and Paulo Reis (Algarve)

Version Française

Dai Davies, from Kingfell Global Crisis, ex-Metropolitan Metropolitan Police Detective: “I am afraid to say it is most likely Maddie is dead"

Police here have given up looking for poor Maddie
EXCLUSIVE THE SEARCH FOR MADELEINE DAY 143
By Dai Davies Former Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent 23/09/2007

Dai Davies (*), associate of Kingfell Global Crisis, Director and Lead Consultant of Selectamark Consultancy consultant at SelectaDNA has a clear opinion about Portuguese Police:

“There is now NO detective work being carried out by Portuguese police to link anyone other than the McCanns to Maddie's disappearance (...) their policy is now to only respond to sightings reported to them by Europol and Interpol.”

“The officers leading the investigation (...) remain convinced of her parents' guilt, apparently unwilling to consider another scenario, even as their "house of cards" case collapses around them.”

“Another fresh revelation that undermines the Portuguese effort is that police also failed to take DNA samples from Madeleine's little brother Sean, two, and his twin sister, Amelie, until their parents were made "arguidos", or suspects, just over two weeks ago.”

“This failure has seriously undermined the whole forensic case against the McCanns. It means early forensic work is flawed and needs to be re-examined. A process that could take months.”

Evidence gathered by the Portuguese police against the McCanns (...) has been fatally flawed through their own incompetence. The apartment was also not sealed off properly, meaning any evidence was contaminated from the outset.”

“Also, I can now see the McCanns in no way abandoned their kids, as some have suggested."

"I was amazed at how close their apartment was to the tapas restaurant (...)"

Aerial view: 120 meters, the walk from the apartment 5A to the Tapas Bar

(CLICK IN THE PICTURE TO ENLARGE)

"Gerry did not call Sky TV before he called the police, as the Portuguese media has claimed. Police now know this was done by Gerry's sister, Philomena, in Glasgow. But they have allowed that rumour to fester.”

The (Portuguese) police now need to halt their campaign to pin this awful crime on two innocent people and bring in new officers for a complete overhaul with fresh eyes. It's back to square one.”

(*) Former Metropolitan Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent


Dai Davies, former Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent: “I am afraid to say it is most likely Maddie is dead”

Team of former SAS is in Portugal to investigate Madeleine disappearance
McCann family asked to Control Risk Group to replace Police in the search for Madeleine

British Police liaison officer surprised with the story of a 'hidden kidnapper':
"Never heard the McCann talk about it with my Portuguese colleagues” (01h54, September 23, 2007)

NEWS AND COMMENTS
Daily Express: McCann in ultimatum to Portuguese Justice, either charge us or clear our name (05h45, September 22, 2007)
The Telegraph - McCann family stark ultimatum to the Portuguese authorities: “Put up or shut up...” (04h59, September 22, 2007)
Seven questions to the President of the Portuguese Bar, Mr. Rogério Alves (03h04, September 22, 2007)

Team of former SAS is in Portugal to investigate Madeleine disappearance


Team of former SAS soldiers already in Portugal. What will be next Mr. Gordon Brown? The Home Fleet and Royal Marines, to take over and allow Scotland Yard launch their own investigation of Madeleine disappearance, as The People magazine wrote?

McCann family asked to Control Risk Group to replace Police in the search for Madeleine

A private security company, paid with money donated by Brian Kennedy, a British businessmen, has send a team to Portugal “to do the work that the Portuguese have failed to do”, according to the Daily Mail. Gerry and Kate have asked the company, founded by former Special Air Services soldiers, to send a team of “search and rescue experts” from CRG to “launch an investigation independent of the Portuguese police. Madeleine's parents believe detectives have failed to follow up dozens of crucial leads and have told friends that the advice and logistical support from CRG is worth the huge overheads.”

Private investigators working in this kind of cases is a crime, according to Portuguese Law. The Daily Mail refers that Control Risk Group has been working with the McCann since several weeks, and a team of specialists from the company has been working in Portuguese territory, following several leads that the McCann believe Portuguese Police hasn't give enough attention. Other team is following leads about the sighting of of Madeleine McCann at a gas station, wrote the Daily Mail.

Portuguese Intelligence services, “Serviços de Informações e Segurança” (SIS) have been monitoring closelly, suspect “movements around the main points where the investigation is going on”. The McCanns are in constant contact with senior representatives of the company, according to a source close to the family”, quoted by Daily Mail. Gerry and Kate turned to the private group, which is based in London and has “high-profile connections to the Foreign Office”, after “Portuguese police began to move their attentions away from the search for Madeleine.”

Most of the 600 employees of CRG are former members of British Special forces. “CRG declined to comment” about its activity in Portuguese territory, saying that “all our dealings with clients are highly confidential”, wrote the Daily Mail. Private investigation of a crime is strictly and clearly forbidden, in Portugal. Only the Polícia Judiciária and the Public Prosecutor's Office have the legal capacity to do it.

CRG has committed a crime, if they really sent a team to Portugal to investigate what is only permitted to Police. When Strongwood, a Dutch firm of private detectives that hired psychics to help the hunt for Madeleine McCann published the report of its ‘investigation’ in Portugal, on the online site of the company, Mr. Olegário, asked to comment, said that “the investigation in Portugal only can be done by police forces.” CRG may be doing what is describe, in the Portuguese Law, as interference in the Portuguese internal affairs, with the purpose of constraining the exercise of the legitimate powers of Polícia Judiciária and the Courts. Also, they can be accused of attempt to pervert the course of Justice, with penalties ranging up to 8 years in prison.

Duarte Levy (Espagne) & Paulo Reis (Algarve)




British Police liaison officer surprised with the story of a 'hidden kidnapper'

“Never heard the McCann talk about it with my Portuguese colleagues”

Gerry McCann “has told friends” he “may have disturbed Maddie's abductor in holiday flat”, when he went there to check the children, around 9.10 pm. “Madeleine McCann's father believes he may have come within a few yards of his daughter's abductor when he saw her for the last time, a friend of the cardiologist said last night”, according to The Scotsman. Many other British newspapers followed the same line, usually referring friends of Gerry McCann as source, like the Sunday Express: “Gerry McCann has told friends he thinks Madeleine's kidnapper was already hiding in their rented villa when he looked-in on Madeleine and his two-year-old twins Sean and Amelie.

ThisIsLondon, a publication from the Evening Standard group, has a similar description of events: “Gerry McCann is convinced his daughter's abductor hid in their apartment as he checked on his children, it has been revealed today. Mr McCann has told friends he believes the kidnapper was already there when he looked in on Madeleine and their two-year-old twins.” The Telegraph wrote that Gerry McCann is now “haunted” by the idea that he has been so close to the abductor: “Agonisingly, he is now sure that standing behind this door was his four-year-old daughter's abductor, waiting to steal her from her bed in the Praia da Luz.”

But a British Police officer that is part of the liaison team based in Algarve, who works closelly with Portuguese detectives in charge of Madeleine McCan's disappearance, told us: “I never heard the McCann talking about it with my Portuguese colleagues”. Other police source was also “surprised” with this new revelation, as Gerry McCann never mentioned nothing about the possibility of a kidnapper hidden in the apartment, when he checked his three children, on the night of May 3: “Gerry McCann never told Police that he suspected there was a kidnapper hidden at his room, or in the other room.”

Another police source was puzzled with the fact that “only after four months Gerry McCann decided to speak about this, and used the British newspapers to do that: “Mr. Gerry McCann talked with Police detectives for so many hours, as a witness and as a formal suspect, and never mentioned a word about the possibility of a hidden kidnapper in the apartment.”

Version Française

Duarte Levy (Espagne) & Paulo Reis (Algarve)

Saturday, 22 September 2007

Daily Express: McCann in ultimatum to Portuguese Justice, either charge us or clear our name

McCann in ultimatum to Portuguese Justice, either charge us or clear our name

Saturday September 22,2007

KATE and Gerry McCann now believe they would be better off being charged over Madeleine's disappearance, it emerged last night.

It is the clearest sign yet of the family’s growing frustration at the innuendo and rumour being levelled against them from the Portuguese police. A source close to the McCanns’ legal team said the time had come for the case against them to be brought into the open. But he admitted that lawyers working on the case believe there is little hope of an early resolution.

“The ball is in the Policia Judiciaria’s court,” he said. “They either need to put up or shut up.”
Privately the McCanns are angry that so much police time is being concentrated on them and away from the hunt for Madeleine. But they are banned from speaking out under Portugal’s secrecy laws.

In a further development, high-flying Portuguese lawyer Rogerio Alves has now joined the so-called Team McCann.

McCann family stark ultimatum to the Portuguese authorities: “Put up or shut up...”

Madeleine McCann's parents challenge police
By Nick Britten and Caroline Gammell
Last Updated: 2:12am BST 22/09/2007

Madeleine McCann's parents have issued a stark ultimatum to the Portuguese authorities, telling them to "put up or shut up".

Now it appears that the McCanns have had enough and are challenging the authorities. A source close to their legal team said: "The ball is back with the Portuguese police. They need to put up or shut up. We feel that the judge has said to the police that they need to go away and find some more evidence if we're going to take it any further. They need to back up what they're claiming or stop."

June 6: Foreign Secretary pledged full support to the McCann family

Miliband makes Maddie pledge

July 06, 2007

MADELEINE McCann’s parents were given a boost last night when David Miliband assured them of his full support.The Foreign Secretary phoned Gerry, 39, and Kate, 38, in the Algarve. A spokesman said: “David Miliband has been in the job less than a week but it was high on his list. “He wanted to let them know he’ll do all he can to help find Madeleine.”

Madeleine parents hire top Portuguese lawyer

AFP
Madeleine parents hire top Portuguese lawyer
The parents of missing girl Madeleine McCann have hired one of Portugal's top lawyers to head up their defence team, according to press reports Friday. Rogerio Alves, the president of the Portuguese Bar, told the Diario de Noticias: "If I accepted the job, it's because I believe there are good reasons to do so."

Clarence Mitchell about McCann being named as “arguidos”: “This is a travesty...”

Boston.com World News
Clarence Mitchell about McCann being named as “arguidos”: “This is a travesty...”
September 9, 2007
PRAIA DA LUZ, Portugal - A British couple named as suspects in the disappearance of their 4-year-old daughter, Madeleine, in Portugal would like to go home but don't want to be perceived as running from justice, family and friends said yesterday.
(...)
A family friend, Clarence Mitchell, said Gerry McCann told him that he and his wife expected clarification of their legal status within 48 hours. "They are in broad agreement that they should get out as soon as they can," Mitchell said via telephone from Britain. Mitchell said the McCanns, both doctors from central England, were considering hiring lawyers in Britain where they would also have support from family and friends. “They are determined to prove this is a travesty . . . and clear their names," Mitchell said of the police allegations about their possible involvement.



Fox News: Father Jonathan Morris attacks Portuguese Public Prosecutor Luís Verão

Fox News
Rushing to Judgment about Madeleine McCann's Disappearance
By Father Jonathan Morris (*)

Portuguese police have resumed search efforts for Madeleine McCann.

This is good news for Kate and Gerry McCann who had been named suspects in the alleged death of their 5-year-old daughter. The McCanns have defended their innocence vigorously and have pleaded with police not to abandon the search for Madeleine.

The Times of London reports today that a source close to the Portuguese public prosecutor, Luis Bilro Verao, says the case against the McCanns has come to an “impasse.”

Little consolation, I imagine, for Kate and Gerry. They know their names will never be cleared until Madeleine is found — doubt will always linger. It’s the way we’re wired.

Do you remember the moment you heard the news about their alleged involvement in Madeleine’s disappearance?

I do. I saw it come over the news wires …

“Mother to be named suspect in case of missing British girl, Madeleine McCann.”

My heart dropped. My mind raced. I assumed the worst. What motive could she possibly have had? Did she do it to get back at her husband for something? Did she have a terrible case of post-partum depression?

Simultaneously, I recalled everything this couple had done over the last few months to get the public on their side. They even went to the Vatican to ask Pope Benedict for prayers. “If they’re guilty,” I thought, “they are disgusting.”

Most journalists were careful not to declare a verdict, but as the days went by and Portuguese prosecutors became more public about their suspicions, bloggers and commentators began to voice worst-case scenarios. Among other things, I heard speculations about the McCanns' possible involvement in elaborate money schemes and child prostitution rings.

How quick we are to believe negativity and scandal!

But today the public prosecutor — the same one who made public his suspicions against the McCanns — says the case against them is at an impasse.

That sounds like a fancy way of saying there is not enough evidence against Kate and Gerry to accuse them of a crime.

What? Tragic! In such a high profile case, did the prosecutor have to name Kate and Gerry official suspects when he did? Could he not have gathered and examined more evidence before he took such a public stance? Did he take into consideration how hard it would be for them to clear their names if his suspicions were wrong?

I put my concerns about the prosecutor in question form because I don’t know for sure he could have acted with greater prudence. But for justice’s sake, these are questions that should be asked.

Beyond the issue of justice for Madeleine and her parents, the proceedings of this case can teach us a great lesson — accusations wield power of their own. If you throw enough mud at a wall, some of it will stick. We can’t hear scandalous news, even in the form of allegations, without believing some of it or harboring doubt.

In reference to rumor and innuendo, I try to follow this little rule: believe all the good you hear and only the evil you see. Oh, and this one too: speak about people as if they were listening in.

God bless, Father Jonathan
E-mail Father Jonathan: Fatherjonathan@foxnews.com

(*) Member of Legionaries of Christ, served as theological adviser to Mel Gibson in the making of the film “The Pasion of Christ”

Former Scotland Yard detective John O'Connor: Was There Really An Intruder?

From The Times
September 22, 2007
Abduction by a stranger is the most plausible reason for disappearance
David Canter (*)
“(...) It appears that the Portuguese police may have fallen into the trap of having first formed a view of who the guilty party is, then seeking out the evidence to support that conclusion.” (...)
In a case such as Madeleine’s disappearance, we should expect professional investigators to pull together systematic accounts of the circumstances of a wide variety of child abductions and see what they can learn from them. It does not seem to me that the Portuguese police have done this. (...)
(*) - David Canter is Professor of Psychology at the University of Liverpool. The second edition of his book, Mapping Murder , will be published by Virgin Books in October.

Sky News Video
Madeleine: Was There Really An Intruder?

Former Scotland Yard detective John O'Connor has been in Portugal trying to pick up clues. He believes Madeleine may have in fact wandered out of the apartment to a nearby supermarket from where she was taken and he thinks she is still close by.

The Scotsman
Gerry McCann 'came close to Madeleine's abductor'
JOHN BINGHAM
PA Chief Reporter in Praia da Luz

MADELEINE McCANN's father believes he might have come within a few yards of his daughter's abductor when he saw her for the last time, a friend said today.

Gerry McCann has become convinced an intruder was already hiding inside the family's holiday flat when he left his meal to go back and check on his children on the night of Madeleine's disappearance (...)

Madeleine McCann: Gerry certain he was in bedroom with kidnapper
By Caroline Gammell in Praia da Luz
Last Updated: 8:54pm BST 21/09/2007

Gerry McCann is convinced his daughter's kidnapper was hiding behind a door in their holiday apartment as he checked on his sleeping children, according to a friend.

The cardiologist saw all three of his offspring – Madeleine, and the twins Sean and Amelie – sleeping peacefully at just after 9pm on the night of her disappearance. But as he turned to leave the ground floor room, he noticed that a door which he thought he had closed earlier was slightly ajar. Agonisingly, he is now sure that standing behind this door was his four-year-old daughter's abductor, waiting to steal her from her bed in the Praia da Luz (...)

From The Times
September 22, 2007
Abduction by a stranger is the most plausible reason for disappearance
David Canter (*)
“(...) It appears that the Portuguese police may have fallen into the trap of having first formed a view of who the guilty party is, then seeking out the evidence to support that conclusion.” (...)
In a case such as Madeleine’s disappearance, we should expect professional investigators to pull together systematic accounts of the circumstances of a wide variety of child abductions and see what they can learn from them. It does not seem to me that the Portuguese police have done this. (...)
(*) - David Canter is Professor of Psychology at the University of Liverpool. The second edition of his book, Mapping Murder , will be published by Virgin Books in October.

DAILY MAIL DELETED THE STORY "Portuguese police admit Madeleine MAY have been abducted after all"

DAILY MAIL DELETED THE STORY "Portuguese police admit Madeleine MAY have been abducted after all" AND REDIRECTED THE LINKS TO ANOTHER STORY - BUT YOU STILL CAN FIND THAT STORY HERE...
(18H01, September 21, 2007)

DAILY MAIL" spining completely out of control...
(17h44, September 21, 2007)

Clarence Mitchell spining out of control
Polícia Judiciária: Daily Mail news story “seem a strange fairy tale..."
(09h04, September 21, 2007)

Daily Mail: Portuguese police admit Madeleine MAY have been abducted after all (09h02, September 21, 2007)


Friday, 21 September 2007
Daily Mail spining completely out of control...

Daily Mail
Madeleine: Friend says 'mystery man carrying child' was heading towards Murat's home
Last updated at 00:59am on 21st September 2007

Previous versions of the May 3 sighting have always suggested that the mystery figure turned right out of the complex and walked urgently downhill in the direction of the beach, away from the villa where the 33-year-old former UK car salesman lives with his mother.

Gerry McCann is convinced his daughter's abductor hid in their apartment as he checked on his children, it has been revealed today. A source close to the family today told the Standard (...)The McCanns (...) now believe the kidnapper got in through unlocked patio doors and left carrying Madeleine through a bedroom window at the front of the ground-floor apartment (...)"

"When Gerry leaves, the man realises he only has a few minutes. He thinks the only way to get out without being seen is through the window. When he (Gerry McCann) went in he saw Madeleine was asleep but the bedroom door was slightly open. He thought, 'That is odd' because he had left it firmly closed. But all the children were asleep. So he just went in and closed the door again and came out at about 9.10pm (according to the same family source)”

Daily Mail
Madeleine: The vital witness who could help clear the McCann's name
Last updated at 12:14pm on 17th September 2007

A witness who could blow the police case apart was identified for the first time. TV producer Jeremy Wilkins, on holiday in Praia da Luz with his partner and baby son, spoke to Gerry McCann during the hour when Madeleine went missing. The cardiologist was on his way back to the resort's tapas restaurant after checking on his three children. Mr Wilkins said he found Mr McCann calm and unflustered during a 15-minute conversation - which would be remarkable for a man supposedly involved in the death of his daughter.

Daily Mail
Madeleine and the missing hour: how often did the McCanns check on their children?
As the hunt for Madeleine hits 100 days, emotions run high
By SUE REID - More by this author »
Last updated at 16:31pm on 11th August 2007

Mr McCann said he checked on his three children at 9.05pm. He noticed that a door in the apartment which had been left shut was ajar. He thought nothing of it but it may have indicated that a kidnapper was already there. But his daughter was fast asleep so he went back to the tapas bar. Another of the group, Jane Tanner, says she took her turn 10 minutes later. She claimed later to police that she saw a dark-haired man of about 35 carrying a child as she walked back to the bar afterwards but thought nothing of it.

There is another conundrum too. It concerns the sighting by Jane Tanner of the man carrying a child. He was wearing beige trousers and smart black shoes. Her report is taken seriously by police. Yet a British holidaymaker, Jeremy Wilkins, has given a deposition that does not support her evidence. He knew Mr McCann because he played tennis with him, and was walking his eight-month-old son in the night air when the drama unfolded.

He says that he met Mr McCann, who had come out of his apartment at 9.05pm, and had a word with him. Soon after that Jane Tanner would have crossed paths with Mr Wilkins and his baby. Mr Wilkins says he saw no man carrying a child or Jane Tanner herself. "It was a very narrow path and I think it would have been almost impossible for anyone to walk by without me noticing," he said. So today the questions remain. Was Madeleine kidnapped or killed? Or unwatched, did she simply walk out and get lost? How could there be a break in with a jemmy through metal shutters without waking the twins or alerting a passerby?

But what is now perturbing Portuguese police is how could she be abducted when the McCann group were checking so often? Or have reports inadvertently exaggerated how vigilant the parents really were? A worker at the tapas bar says that only a tall man, believed to be Russell O'Brien, got up from the table during the entire evening.
Of course, this witness might be wrong. A busy barman could not have eyes on the McCann party for two and a half hours. And what of Najova Chekaya, the aerobics teacher running the quiz? She was invited over to the McCann table by Mr McCann himself when the game ended at 9.30. She stayed for half an hour. She later claimed to friends that nobody left the table.

Previous reports have suggested that the McCanns and their children were with the rest of the party at the Paradiso restaurant at 6pm close to the beach at Praia da Luz. But friends say the family had not joined them that day.

Waiters at the Paraiso beach restaurant who saw Madeleine just hours before she vanished, told the Daily Mirror Mr McCann was a "devoted" father as he bounced the youngster up and down on his shoulders. After giving evidence to the police, another witness at the restaurant said "he seemed like the perfect dad, always giving her hugs and lots of attention."Gerry spent 80 per cent of his time with the little girl, playing on the beach while the mum spent a long time trying to feed the twins who were in high chairs either side of her in the restaurant. It is so upsetting to know a few hours after that she had gone."
A waiter who served the children their meals of spaghetti bolognese and fillet of fish recalled,"They made you smile, full of fun and very happy holiday moods." According to staff, the family and three couples arrived around 5 pm. "They were at the restaurant for over an hour and most of the time Gerry was playing with Maddy on the beach in front."He took her down to the beach on his shoulders time and again. Each time she was giggling and bouncing up and down. On the beach he pushed her on the swings and gave her loads of hugs and kisses - all you could hear was Daddy, daddy, daddy."

He really did seem a perfect dad. I can't see how he had anything to do with her disappearance. He'd have to be a superb actor." Most of the adults were on the beach with the other children but kept coming and going. Kate was at the restaurant table feeding the twins in baby chairs. It took a while. I felt a bit sorry for her."

Friday, 21 September 2007

Daily Mail spining completely out of control...

Daily Mail
Madeleine: Friend says 'mystery man carrying child' was heading towards Murat's home
Last updated at 00:59am on 21st September 2007

Previous versions of the May 3 sighting have always suggested that the mystery figure turned right out of the complex and walked urgently downhill in the direction of the beach, away from the villa where the 33-year-old former UK car salesman lives with his mother.

Daily Mail
Madeleine's father: 'Abductor was hiding in apartment while I checked on her'
Last updated at 13:52pm on 21st September 2007

Gerry McCann is convinced his daughter's abductor hid in their apartment as he checked on his children, it has been revealed today. A source close to the family today told the Standard (...)The McCanns (...) now believe the kidnapper got in through unlocked patio doors and left carrying Madeleine through a bedroom window at the front of the ground-floor apartment (...)"

"When Gerry leaves, the man realises he only has a few minutes. He thinks the only way to get out without being seen is through the window. When he (Gerry McCann) went in he saw Madeleine was asleep but the bedroom door was slightly open. He thought, 'That is odd' because he had left it firmly closed. But all the children were asleep. So he just went in and closed the door again and came out at about 9.10pm (according to the same family source)”

Daily Mail
Madeleine: The vital witness who could help clear the McCann's name
Last updated at 12:14pm on 17th September 2007

A witness who could blow the police case apart was identified for the first time. TV producer Jeremy Wilkins, on holiday in Praia da Luz with his partner and baby son, spoke to Gerry McCann during the hour when Madeleine went missing. The cardiologist was on his way back to the resort's tapas restaurant after checking on his three children. Mr Wilkins said he found Mr McCann calm and unflustered during a 15-minute conversation - which would be remarkable for a man supposedly involved in the death of his daughter.

Daily Mail
Madeleine and the missing hour: how often did the McCanns check on their children?
As the hunt for Madeleine hits 100 days, emotions run high
By SUE REID - More by this author »
Last updated at 16:31pm on 11th August 2007

Mr McCann said he checked on his three children at 9.05pm. He noticed that a door in the apartment which had been left shut was ajar. He thought nothing of it but it may have indicated that a kidnapper was already there. But his daughter was fast asleep so he went back to the tapas bar. Another of the group, Jane Tanner, says she took her turn 10 minutes later. She claimed later to police that she saw a dark-haired man of about 35 carrying a child as she walked back to the bar afterwards but thought nothing of it.

There is another conundrum too. It concerns the sighting by Jane Tanner of the man carrying a child. He was wearing beige trousers and smart black shoes. Her report is taken seriously by police. Yet a British holidaymaker, Jeremy Wilkins, has given a deposition that does not support her evidence. He knew Mr McCann because he played tennis with him, and was walking his eight-month-old son in the night air when the drama unfolded.

He says that he met Mr McCann, who had come out of his apartment at 9.05pm, and had a word with him. Soon after that Jane Tanner would have crossed paths with Mr Wilkins and his baby. Mr Wilkins says he saw no man carrying a child or Jane Tanner herself. "It was a very narrow path and I think it would have been almost impossible for anyone to walk by without me noticing," he said. So today the questions remain. Was Madeleine kidnapped or killed? Or unwatched, did she simply walk out and get lost? How could there be a break in with a jemmy through metal shutters without waking the twins or alerting a passerby?

Daily Mail
Madeleine and the missing hour: how often did the McCanns check on their children?
As the hunt for Madeleine hits 100 days, emotions run high
By SUE REID - More by this author »
Last updated at 16:31pm on 11th August 2007

But what is now perturbing Portuguese police is how could she be abducted when the McCann group were checking so often? Or have reports inadvertently exaggerated how vigilant the parents really were? A worker at the tapas bar says that only a tall man, believed to be Russell O'Brien, got up from the table during the entire evening.

Of course, this witness might be wrong. A busy barman could not have eyes on the McCann party for two and a half hours. And what of Najova Chekaya, the aerobics teacher running the quiz? She was invited over to the McCann table by Mr McCann himself when the game ended at 9.30. She stayed for half an hour. She later claimed to friends that nobody left the table.


Daily Mail
Madeleine: The missing six hours that baffle police
Where was Kate between last photo and arrival at tapas bar?
Last updated at 15:11pm on 21st September 2007

Previous reports have suggested that the McCanns and their children were with the rest of the party at the Paradiso restaurant at 6pm close to the beach at Praia da Luz. But friends say the family had not joined them that day.

Daily Mail
Madeleine: The vital witness who could help clear the McCann's name
Last updated at 12:14pm on 17th September 2007

Waiters at the Paraiso beach restaurant who saw Madeleine just hours before she vanished, told the Daily Mirror Mr McCann was a "devoted" father as he bounced the youngster up and down on his shoulders. After giving evidence to the police, another witness at the restaurant said "he seemed like the perfect dad, always giving her hugs and lots of attention."Gerry spent 80 per cent of his time with the little girl, playing on the beach while the mum spent a long time trying to feed the twins who were in high chairs either side of her in the restaurant. It is so upsetting to know a few hours after that she had gone." A waiter who served the children their meals of spaghetti bolognese and fillet of fish recalled,

"They made you smile, full of fun and very happy holiday moods." According to staff, the family and three couples arrived around 5 pm. "They were at the restaurant for over an hour and most of the time Gerry was playing with Maddy on the beach in front."He took her down to the beach on his shoulders time and again. Each time she was giggling and bouncing up and down. On the beach he pushed her on the swings and gave her loads of hugs and kisses - all you could hear was Daddy, daddy, daddy."

He really did seem a perfect dad. I can't see how he had anything to do with her disappearance. He'd have to be a superb actor." Most of the adults were on the beach with the other children but kept coming and going. Kate was at the restaurant table feeding the twins in baby chairs. It took a while. I felt a bit sorry for her."

Clarence Mitchell sprining out of control

Polícia Judiciária: Daily Mail news story “seem a strange fairy tale..."

Policia Judiciária denied, today, the idea that «Portuguese detectives have admitted that missing Madeleine McCann may have been abducted - after not finding enough evidence to to further question Kate and Gerry McCann.”, as Daily Mail online edition wrote, at 19:35 pm. This is “utterly false”, a source from Policia Judiciária told, classifying the story as “a strange kind of fairy tale, because none of us was contacted by the newspaper”.

Daily Mail: Portuguese police admit Madeleine MAY have been abducted after all

Daily Mail: Portuguese police admit Madeleine MAY have been abducted after all

“Portuguese detectives have admitted that missing Madeleine McCann may have been abducted - after not finding enough evidence to to further question Kate and Gerry McCann” according to a story published today on the online edition of Daily Mail, at 19.35pm. “In a dramatic u-turn police have once again reverted to earlier theories that the four-year-old may have been snatched or involved in an accident.”

Thursday, 20 September 2007

Cardinal has facilitate McCann family's presence at audience with the Pope

Cardinal to facilitate McCann family's presence at audience with the Pope

The President of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, is to facilitate the presence of the family of Madeleine McCann at an audience with Pope Benedict XVI as soon as is feasible. A spokesperson for Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor said:

“The Cardinal is conscious of the prayers of the entire Catholic community in this country for the McCann family at this distressing time. Having spoken to Dr Gerry McCann, the Cardinal is facilitating the presence of the McCanns at an audience with the Holy Father as soon as is feasible. The Cardinal also assured Dr McCann of his prayers for the safe release of Madeleine and for the rest of the family.”

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

Petition to help support Gerry and Kate McCann backfires

Abuse, insults and accusations have been posted at a site where a petition to “help support Gerry and Kate McCann as they battle to clear their names” was launched. The text of the petition refers that “it will be used to convince the government that we believe in their innocence and to sway them to pressurise the Portuguese police to continue to look for Madeleine McCann.”

PJ has a video with Madeleine, recorded in the afternoon of May 3



Polícia Judiciária has a video with Madeleine, on May 3, eating an ice-cream with her father, at a restaurant in Praia da Luz. The images were recorded by a private surveillance camera from restaurant “Paraíso”, between 5.00 pm and 5.45 pm, May 3. In the video, Madeleine is seen playing and dancing with her father, at the terrace of the restaurant, near the seaside.

Duarte Levy (Rothley) and Paulo Reis (Huelva)

Search for the body of Madeleine McCann to start within less than two hours

Within less than two hours, Polícia Judiciária will start searching for the body of Madeleine McCann on specific areas, already cordoned off. The searches will be concentrated at a place between Praia da Luz and Burgau, another seaside village, and in several areas North of the town of Lagos, where sniffer dogs will be used.

(to be continued)

Duarte Levy
(Rothley) and Paulo Reis (Huelva)

The Times: Sources in Britain agree that “there is 'significant' scientific evidence linking Mr and Mrs McCann to their daughter’s death.”

According to The Times, on a long “Questions & Answers” article, on its edition of September 18, “it appears the Forensic Science Service believes it has discovered compelling new evidence, possibly from more than one source” that seems to confirm not only that Madeleine McCann is dead, but also that there is “significant' scientific evidence linking Mr and Mrs McCann to their daughter’s death” - a fact that the newspaper say is confirmed by “sources in Britain who are assisting the Portuguese investigation.”

The Times also refers that “because the samples have degraded over time the scientists can never be 100 per cent certain that they came from Madeleine.” Information about the scientific evidence has been revealed by “some officers” that “have been secretly briefing Portuguese journalists”, wrote The Times.

Portuguese senior Police officers “now believe they have sufficient evidence to charge Kate and Gerry McCann for concealing a body and probably to convict Mrs McCann with accidentally killing her daughter”, says The Times. But the same officer, ”privately admitted earlier this week that they still could not prove that Madeleine was intentionally killed.”

One of the subjects raised with Gerry and Kate McCann, when they were questioned by Polícia Judiciária, in Portimão, was the fact that Eddie, the Leicestershire Police sniffer dog specially trained to detect the smell of a corpse, went “crazy” when he was near the car hired by the McCann, according to The Times.

“Mrs McCann is reported to have explained that in her work as locum GP she came into contact with six corpses in the weeks leading up to Algarve holiday.” This “seems a high number for a locum GP working just a couple of days a week”, refers The Times, “but would be easy to check against surgery records.”

“The crucial difficulty with the sniffer dog “evidence” is that it cannot distinguish between corpses. This type of dog is trained to find bodies, not identify where dead bodies have been” The Times wrote. And more important, those dogs, says The Times, “can become excited by other scents.” Eddie “is alleged to have become excited when shown Madeleine’s favourite soft pink toy, called Cuddle Cat.”

Reports about the twins sleeping in the middle of all the noise and confusion that followed Kate's discovery of Madeleine's disappearance were also analysed by The Times, in the “Q & A” article: “Sean and Amelie were heavy sleepers who were not disturbed by their sister’s abduction, claim their parents. However, they also slept through their mother’s hysterical response to Madeleine’s disappearance and the presence of dozens of people who joined the search before being carried out by a female police officer. Kate and Gerry McCann have strenuously denied sedating their daughter”, is the conclusion of the question “Why did Madeleine’s sister and brother sleep through her 'abduction?”

Duarte Levy (Rothley) and Paulo Reis (Huelva)

Tony Connell, Damilola's case Prosecutor, is working on Madeleine's case

Tony Connell, from the Crown Prosecution Service’s special casework unit, was appointed to advice the “Gold Group”, a special team of detectives from Leicestershire Police which is helping the Portuguese Police in the investigation of Madeleine McCann disappearance. Mr. Connel, assisted by caseworker Les Chasler, managed to get a conviction of the Preddie brothers for the killing of 10-year-old Damilola Taylor. The Director of Public Prosecutions said it was an achievement "against all odds": Six years, three trials and two police inquiries after his murder, a jury convicted Ricky Preddie, 19, and his brother Danny, 18, of killing Damilola.

Steve Bird and David Brown: Could the McCanns be prosecuted in Britain?

The Times question: Could the McCanns be prosecuted in Britain?

The Times answer: It is possible to prosecute a British citizen for a murder or manslaughter abroad under the Offences Against the Person Act 1861. This was last done in 2005 when Christopher Newman was convicted at the Inner London Crown Court of murdering Georgina Eager in Dublin.

Gazeta Digital question: Could the McCanns be prosecuted and put on trial in Portugal?

European Union answer: “The European arrest warrant applies to all offences. In practice, the judiciary of each member state will be able to issue a European arrest warrant when a person is being prosecuted for an offence punishable by a custodial sentence of over a year or when the person has been sentenced to custodial or detention order exceeding four months. When an arrest is carried out on the basis of a European arrest warrant in a member state, the person will be handed over by the judiciary of the state where the arrest has taken place pending minimal control over a maximum period of three months.”

Steve Bird and Patrick Foster: The McCann couple “have expressed fears that Portuguese detectives are attempting to frame them for Madeleine’s death.”

From Times Online
September 18, 2007
We can explain Madeleine's DNA in our car, say parents
Steve Bird in Portimao and Patrick Foster

Portuguese detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are expected in Leicester tomorrow, hours after it was claimed that her parents believe they can demolish all the evidence being laid against them. Their expected arrival comes after the McCanns were told by lawyers and forensic scientists that evidence against them is too weak to secure a conviction and can be explained by cross-contamination of material linked to their daughter.

A source close to the family said tonight that they can show how the samples got into the car. He said that Madeleine’s clothes and other belongings had been carried in the Renault Scenic when the family moved house.
These included a pair of pyjamas which Madeleine had worn on the holiday, a pair of her flip-flops and nappies used by Madeleine’s twin brother and sister before her disappearance on May 3. A family source said: “Who is to say what happened when they moved to the new villa? The seats were ripped out and everything including Madeleine’s sandals and the twins’ nappies were dumped in the car — which would have included traces of skin, sweat and bodily fluids.”
(...)

The couple have expressed fears that Portuguese detectives are attempting to frame them for Madeleine’s death. The police have been heavily criticised for failing to find any evidence of Madeleine’s fate and have been under intense political pressure from Lisbon and London. A family source said that the couple had received no notification that they were to be reinterviewed.

Mrs McCann spoke publicly for the first time yesterday since returning home to Rothley, Leicestershire, a week last Sunday. “We are not seeking to run,” she said. adding:She added: “There are lots of reasons, both spiritual, emotional and social, for us to return to Portugal at any time.”

The couple’s legal team are scouring Portuguese newspapers to show that the police have waged a campaign to smear their reputation. Clarence Mitchell, the couple’s spokesman, hopes that the legal team will prove that the reports show the couple have been “set up”.

Portuguese detectives left to UK to follow the questioning of Kate and Gerry McCann

Several PJ detectives left yesterday, September 18, to UK, to follow the questioning of Kate and Gerry McCann by the Leicestershire Police. The Portuguese detectives have a long and detailed list of questions – already translated to English – that the McCann couple refused to answer, while they were questioned at PJ headquearters, in Portimão, when they asked, both, to be given the statute of 'formal suspect' ("arguido"), which allowed them to refuse to answer, without facing charges of contempt to the court.

Kate and Gerry started to be questioned as witnesses. According to Portuguese Law, a witness must tell the truth, the all truth and only the truth, and can't refuse to answer questions. In the middle of the questioning, Kate and Gerry asked to be named "formal suspects", in order to have the same legal right that USA citizens have, when they invoke the 5th Amendment: the right not to answer questions asked by police, in order to not incriminate themselves.

Sources close to the investigation of Madeleine's disappearance confirmed that the final batch of analysis that have been done at the Forensic Science Service, in Birmingham, will be sent to Portugal very soon. Those last results "will give more consistence to a line of inquiry", according to the same source.

Policia Judiciária will start today, September 19, a new phase of the investigation, with a significant help from the Spanish Police, wich has already undertake some actions in order to check several details, persons and places, related with the investigation of Madeleine's disappearance. This actions from Spanish Police were requested by Portuguese Police during a meeting, on September 11, between a high level team of PJ detectives and officers in charge of the "Brigadas contra el Crimen Organizado" (Organized Crime Special Unit") from Spanish Police.

(to be continued)

Duarte Levy (Rothley) & Paulo Reis (Huelva)

Portuguese Police: “Doesn’t Gordon Brown have a job to do?”

Portuguese Police is “fed up” with Gerry and Kate McCann repeated attempts to involve politicians and British Government in the investigation of their daughter disappearance. A senior Portuguese officer, quoted by The Telegraph, said that Madeleine's parents actions were “constant interruptions and distractions”. “Doesn’t Gordon Brown have a job to do? Why is he getting involved in a police investigation? We have a job to do and need space in which to do it. This pressure from politicians is not helping the case”, the source said. The McCann couple revealed, last Tuesday, that they wanted to contact the British Prime-Minister, Gordon Brown, to explain him why they were innocent.

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Belfast Telegraph: Time for the British Government keep out of a serious criminal investigation

“Madeleine McCann story - and the real reason why it feels so unsavoury - is that it is now spinning out of control”, writes Gail Walker on today's edition of Belfast Telegraph. The columnist says that “there was always, in PR terms, an element of spin in this story.” For Gail Walker, if Gerry and Kate McCann were “working class parents they'd have been slated” for their “neglectful” behaviour, when people realized they left three small children alone to go out for dinner, at a restaurant “some distance away.”

Mr McCann, we are reliably informed, has personally rung some editors to state his innocence”, according to Gail Walker. “But one of the strange aspects of the case is that the perception of innocence or guilt is almost being determined by the magnitude of the law firms and QCs on one side and the Prosecutors and Judges on the other. For every ordinary legal functionary doing their job in Portugal, there is almost a celebrity on the McCann side. In addition to Sir Richard Branson forking out on legal fees, one of their 'top lawyers' is none other than Michael Caplan QC, formerly hired by one Augusto Pinochet to fight extradition.”

The columnist of Belfast Telegraph mentions also the recent change of seats from Clarecence Mitchell, until a few days director of the powerful Media Monitoring Unit – a department of the British Government's Central Office of Information, part of the Government Communications Network, whose hard-working civil servants are known, all over the Net, as 'keyboard typing monkeys' or 'trolls', due to what members of many forums and message boards experience, whenever they criticise the British Government, their allies and friends.

Gail Walker writes: “And now we're told that Clarence Mitchell, originally seconded from the Foreign Office to assist the couple - a move that raised eyebrows in itself - is to step down from his government role and become their new Media Advisor. Ex-hack Mitchell has lots of experience. But he is a government man, and the move will only spark more controversy and conspiracy theories.”

Clarence Mitchell has been working before as Press Officer for the McCann family, while keeping his post at the Media Monitoring Unit. Now he has quited, because he feels “so strongly that [the McCanns] are innocent victims of a heinous crime” that he is prepared “to forego my career in Government service to assist them.” Mr. Clarecence Mitchell told to the Press that his salary is being paid by a private backer of the McCann family that wishes to remain anonynous.
But Gail Walker finishes her opinion column with a clear message and a serious appeal:

“One problem for Team McCann is that the sophisticated Noughties' public recognises when a story is being 'managed'. Even though it also knows there may be perfectly good reasons why that may be so, the device jars. Getting the message across can easily, if unfairly, translate into: what are they hiding? The time has come for us all to take a step back. For the McCanns - all of them - to afford themselves some privacy. For the media to take a breather. For the Government, even by implication, to keep out of a serious criminal investigation. And for due process to take its course.”