Tuesday, 31 July 2007

Spanish Court orders Italian Danilo Chemello to be freed

The Spanish Court of San Roque ordered Italian citizen Danillo Chemello, accused of an extortion attempt against Madeleine's parents, to be freed, according to French blog SOS Madeleine. Portuguese police was just informed of the decision of the Spanish Court to drop to case, writes SOS Madeleine, quoting a source close to the investigation. The decision was taken last Friday, but Danilo Chemello is still in jail, waiting for the annulment of the detention order issued by “Audiencia Nacional”, the Spanish Supreme Court, because of the extradition request against him, from French authorities. Danilo Chemello and is Portuguese wife, Aurora Vaz Pereira, were arrested on June 28, after an alleged attempt to extort money from McCann couple. The Italian is wanted by French Police because of a conspiracy to kill a judge.

Sunday, 29 July 2007

Robert Murat gave his ex-wife address when he rented a car on May 12

Robert Murat used his ex-wife address in Hockering (Norfolk),UK, to rent a car on May 12, the birthday of Madeleine, according to the French language blog SOS Madeleine. Murat said that he needed the car because “English people who are looking for the little girl need to borrow my car. They need to put information posters on it”, according to one of the employees of “Auto Rent III”, quoted by “The Mirror”.
Murat took the blue Hyundai Getz at 17h16, May 12 and a friend returned the car on May 15. SOS Madeleine published a picture of the renting car papers. The French blog SOS Madeleine says also that the miles registered with the renting company were “quite a lot” but it quotes a source close to the company that admits the possibility of a mistake, in the registration of the distance the car has been driven. The renting contract only has the number of miles the car had registered when it was taken by Robert Murat. The Auto Rent III agency at Praia da Luz doesn't have a computer system and documents are handwritten.

The reason Murat gave, when he hired the car, was different from a later justification from Tuck Price, his friend and spokesman to the Press. On June 5, Tuck Price told “The Resident”, a English language newspaper published in Algarve, that Murat needed a rented car because “police had asked him to come to Portimão to help with their investigation. One of his cars was being repaired and the other was being used by his mother, so he had to hire a car to get himself to Portimão. The police know this and are not investigating it as suspicious.”
Mario Rocio, an assistant at Auto Rent III, told “The Telegraph” that Robert Murat “was acting suspiciously” when he phoned her, to ask for a car: "There was something in his voice. I thought he needed a car in a hurry."

Help finding Rui Pedro – a missing Portuguese child

Filomena Teixeira, 43 years old, looks tired in the picture published by “Expresso”, a Portuguese weekly newspaper. Her son, Rui Pedro, vanished nine years ago, while playing near her office, in a small town, Lousada. His case was referred a few times, in the Portuguese Press, as an example of a case that had a very different approach, from Police, when comparing with Madeleine's abduction.
Last week, Rui Pedro's mother saw, for the first time, an image of how her son would be, now. The image was prepared by Scotland Yard Police Facial Imaging Team, following a formal request from Portuguese Police, after “Expresso” took the initiative to ask for help from British Police.
Family members of Rui Pedro went abroad, several times, at their own expenses, to follow clues that seemed to be solid. Pictures of a boy with strong similarities to Rui Pedro surfaced twice, in paedophile material apprehended by British and Swiss Police. On January 2002, Portuguese Police received other pictures from a boy tied up and gagged, also apprehended to a paedophile. Filomena Teixeira saw the pictures and she is sure it was her son.
The family opened an bank account to ask for donations to help find Rui Pedro. The account never got more than one thousand euros. Rui Pedro's family sent a message of solidarity to Gerry and Kate McCann and invited them to be members of the “Portuguese Association of Missing Children”. The message was sent on May 11, but they received no answer. More information about Rui Pedro may be found on this web page (English version): RuiPedro.Net

Friday, 27 July 2007

The mysterious Sotogrande couple

Danilo Chemello and his Portuguese companion, Aurora Vaz Pereira, have been in Portugal, before Madeleine was abducted. The information was posted by SOS Madeleine, quoting sources from the Spanish Criminal Police. Portuguese CID, contacted by SOS Madeleine, said that they were “analysing the information”, but refused to elaborate. The couple had contacted McCann family and said they had information about Madeleine, but were arrested in Sotogrande, Spain, on June 28 and accused of extortion. The investigation is covered by the Spanish Law Secrecy – similar to Portugal – and no details about it can be released or published by the Media. Portuguese CID is still waiting for the results of forensic analysis of material collected from the house where Danilo and Aurora were arrested.

Portuguese experts dismiss possibility of prosecution of Gerry and Kate

The possibility of Madeleine parents being accused of negligence was considered “ridicule” by Luís Villas-Boas, head of “Refúgio Aboim Ascenção” and one of the most prestigious personalities, in Portugal, in the area of child protection. Villas-Boas, interviewed by Diário de Notícias (DN), referred a case, in 2001, when a British couple abandoned a small baby near the Lagos airport and took a plane to UK.
“That was a crime and the couple wasn't accused or arrested. I'm surprised that the British are looking, now, for evidence to accuse the parents of the kidnapped child, when they didn't arrested that couple, a few years ago”. The baby was sent to “Refúgio Aboim Ascensão” and later adopted by a Portuguese family. Mr. Villas-Boas emphasised that there was not, in his opinion, a crime of negligence, from Madeleine's parents, they just “made a mistake” and they will have "to deal with the results of that mistake for the rest of their lifes, if Madeleine isn't found". A lawyer contacted by the newspaper considered also highly improbable that an accusation of negligence would be accepted by a court, in this case.
The “Daily Express” wrote that “there have been calls in Portugal to prosecute the pair for leaving their children alone”, but didn't mentioned who made those calls. The Portuguese Press referred news in the British Press, chats and forums in the Net, talking about alleged investigations by Prosecution services, in UK, which were analysing the case of Madeleine, in order to produce an eventual accusation against Gerry and Kate.

Friday, 13 July 2007

Robert Murat interview with Martin Brunt, from Sky News: Portuguese CID is analysing the facts, in order to decide what action will be taken

Robert Murat may have violated the law, when he talked with Martin Brunt, from Sky News, about details of the crime investigation concerning to Madeleine McCann’s abduction. Portuguese CID spokesman told Gazeta Digital that “Polícia Judiciária has already information about the interview and is analysing the facts, in order to take a proper action”.
Witnesses and “arguidos” (formal suspects that haven’t yet been accused, in the Portuguese legal system) are forbidden to talk about the crime investigation. Doing it means they committed a crime. The final decision about prosecuting Robert Murat for breaching the “Secrecy Law” in a crime investigation will be taken by the Public Prosecutor’s Office.

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Portuguese CID spokesman: "The McCann are not suspects"

"Policia Judiciaria hasn't changed its position and does not consider Madeleine's parents as suspects", Chief-Inspector Olegario de Sousa said today, after being questioned by Gazeta Digital. The Portuguese weekly "Sol" wrote, last week, that "Madeleine parents and their holiday friends were suspects in this crime investigation" and the group has made a "pact of silence". Almost two months ago, Olegario de Sousa made a statement about this subject, at a Press Conference, and said that Gerry and Kate were not suspects in the abduction of Madeleine.

Monday, 9 July 2007

The truth about Leonor Cipriano (mother of "another missing girl"…) "beaten" and "tortured" by Chief-Inspector Gonçalo Amaral

There’s a killer on the road (*), and his name is "Amaral Lector". This is what most readers of British Media should think, after what was published by tabloids like Daily Express and Daily Mail, about Portuguese CID Chief-Inspector Gonçalo Amaral, the man in charge of the investigation of Madeleine disappearance. That "killer", Gonçalo Amaral, has tortured a poor mother of "another missing girl", (a girl that vanished like Madeleine McCann, right?) as Daily Express wrote. Several emails and comments posted at my page reflected the conclusion their authors arrived, after being so accurately and precisely informed by British journalist about what happened to Joana, an eight years old girl, daughter of Leonor Cipriano, the poor mother tortured by "Amaral Lector".

What most British journalists forget to mention – never allow truth or reality to kill a good story, of course … - was a couple of "small" details that, if mentioned, would transform those good headlines in nothing. So, let’s take a look at some facts about that "another missing girl":

1 – Joana Cipriano vanished from a small place 10 km in the outskirts of Portimão. Last time somebody saw her, she was on her way to a local groceries shop;
2 - Her mother, Leonor Cipriano, only reported to Police her daughter has disappeared two days after;
3 – After a long and difficult investigation, headed by Chief-Inspector Gonçalo Amaral, Leonor Cipriano and her brother were accused of murdering the eight years old child;
4 – The body of Joana Cipriano was never found, but samples of her blood were found in her mother refrigerator;
5 – Her mother justified those samples of blood admitting she had beaten Joana, for some reason, she was hurt and she blooded from her nose;
6 – Leonor Cipriano and her brother, who had a incestuous relationship, were sentenced to 16 years in jail, for the murder of her daughter and nice;
7 – Before the trial, Leonor Cipriano accused five CID officers of beating her, trying to extract a confession. She named the five CID officers, and included Chief-Inspector Gonçalo ("Amaral Lector", according to British tabloids…);
8 – The Public Prosecutor’s Office opened a criminal investigation and ordered a police line-up, with the CID officers named and accused by Leonor Cipriano of beating her;
9 – The line-up took place with Leonor Cipriano behind a two-way mirror and she couldn’t recognize any of the aggressors;
10 – The Public Prosecutor’s Office magistrate that was in charge of the criminal investigation decided to accuse the five CID officers, but didn’t mentioned, in the accusation sent to the Court, that Leonor Cipriano couldn’t identify any of the aggressors, in the police line-up;
11 – Leonor Cipriano never confessed the murder of her own daughter. Her brother, in a letter written from jail, accused Leonor Cipriano of selling her daughter;
12 – Police is convinced (and the jurors at the trial found enough evidence to pass a verdict of guilty) that Leonor Cipriano and her brother were found, by Joana, having sexual relations, when she came home, back from the groceries shop. As Leonor Cipriano had a lover, at the time, they were afraid she would tell him what she saw;
13 – So, they beat her, in order to frighten her and keep her mouth shut up;
14 – Perhaps accidentally, they beat her so violently that they killed her. So, they decided to get rid of he body and cut it in pieces, keeping some of them in the freezer, while they gave the other pieces to be eaten by pigs (this is what police believes is the strongest possibility, because there was no other trace of Joana Cipriano, unless the blood samples in her mother freezer…)
15 – The body of Joana Cipriano was never found.

And so, here we have a terrible story of a dysfunctional family, a child murdered and a very difficult police investigation. The only thing – in my humble opinion - that has some similarity with Madeleine McCann disappearance is the fact that the person in charge of Madeleine’s case is the same that successfully headed Joana Cipriano investigation: CID Chief-Inspector Gonçalo Amaral. And success, in Joana’s case, is clear: the murderers were found, accused, went to court, they were sentenced, they appealed the sentence and the Portuguese Supreme Court reduced it to 16 years of jail to both of them – the mother, Leonor Cipriano and her brother, for the murder her daughter and nice, eight year old Joana Cipriano.

If many "consumers" of British Media have another idea, that’s because most British journalists covering Madeleine McCann abduction strongly believe that truth never should be allowed to "kill" a good story. Even if I means destroying the reputation of an experienced CID Chief-Inspector. "And what’s the problem?" – I imagine my British colleagues asking themselves this question, with a pint of Guinness in the hand, enjoying the sunshine at Praia da Luz. "The guy isn’t even British, he’s just a Portuguese…"

(*) "Riders on The Storm" - Jim Morrison & The Doors