Tuesday, 15 December 2009

The broken shutters: a persistent campaign of manipulation

"Trish Cameron and Philomena McCann, Gerry’s sisters, Jill Renwick, a family friend and Jon Corner, Madeleine’s godparent were important key players in the McCann’s campaign of manipulation and distortion, since the early hours. Despite the clear and blunt denials of John Hill, the Ocean resort manager, Portuguese police and witnesses, they insisted that the shutters of apartment 5A were “jemmied” or “broken” and – small but interesting detail – the door, which had been locked, was open.”

Trish Cameron, Mr. McCann’s sister, from Dumbarton, near Glasgow, said it appeared that someone had been spying on Madeleine and had targeted her for abduction. The front door was open, the window had been tampered with, the shutters had been jimmied open and Madeleine was missing,” she said. “Nothing had been touched in the apartment, no valuables taken, no passports. They think someone must have come in the window and gone out the door with her.”

“(…) the manager at the Ocean Club (…) [John] Hill said that despite the report by a family friend that the shutters to the couple's apartment were broken, there was no sign that anyone had forced their way in while the McCanns ate at the tapas restaurant 200 yards away.”


“But family friend Jill Renwick told GMTV the McCanns were certain that Madeleine has been abducted. "They were just watching the hotel room and going back every half-hour and the shutters had been broken open and they had gone into the room and taken Madeleine," she said.”

Trish Cameron, Mr. McCann’s sister, said she received a telephone call from her 39-year-old brother, a consultant cardiologist, who was "hysterical and crying his eyes out". She said: "They had put the kids to bed at 7pm and checked on them every half an hour as they had dinner nearby with the rest of the party. Gerry said the window was open, the shutters broken and the door, which had been locked, hanging open.”

Philomena McCann said: "(..) We think they were being watched and this was premeditated. Gerry is worried that may have happened. Some people may ask why they left the children alone in the apartment but it was locked.”

Jon Corner, a close friend of Mrs. McCann and godparent of the twins, said she telephoned him in the middle of the night distraught. He said: "She just blurted out that Madeleine had been abducted. She told me, 'They have broken the shutter on the window and taken my little girl.' "They had left the apartment locked while they were having their meal, but when they went back the last time they saw the damage."First they saw one of the window shutters had been forced, and then they saw the door was open and the bed was empty - and Madeleine was gone.”

“(…) Chief Inspector Olegario Sousa, spokesman for the investigation, has confided in British former Chief Inspector Albert Kirby that neither the windows nor their shutters had been tampered with. Gerry and Kate McCann would have used the patio doors as they checked on their daughter and her twin siblings during their meal near the Mark Warner holiday complex swimming pool and it is these doors that were left unsecured. The McCanns and all their friends on the holiday left their patio doors open throughout the evenings for fear of fire. Mr. Kirby told The Mail on Sunday: (...) The window shutters are not an issue. Their mechanism makes them almost impossible to open. The door was left unlocked. They did that every night."

"Prof David Barclay, one of Britain's top forensic consultants speaking on Martin Brunt's documentary 'The Mystery of Madeleine McCann’, aired on 24 December 2007: "I think it's impossible for somebody to get in and out, through that window without leaving a forensic trace. Apart from anything else, the window sills in that area are covered in green lichen. The minute you try and scrape over the window sills you would have left marks and we know that the scenes of crime lady, the next morning, was looking for exactly that."


“Interestingly, Clarence Mitchell's statement about the McCanns reversal of their 'break in' story, came one week after Dispatches aired the documentary 'Searching For Madeleine' on 18 October 2007. In that documentary, it was effectively proved that there was no way anybody could break into the apartment and leave no forensic trace or damage to the lightweight aluminium shutters, which are covered with a fine coating of polyurethane paint which marks extremely easily.”

“They also tested the thumb prints, that showed up under the red dust of the forensic fingerprint powder, and proved the prints came from somebody moving the shutter from inside the apartment.”


“Again, Prof Dave Barclay said: "We must be very careful that we're not saying this is actually staging but it's difficult to see how anybody could have interfered with those shutters, from outside, without leaving some trace. In fact, having looked at them, I think it's almost impossible."