Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Madeleine McCann: New Video - What Would You Do?


Friday, 23 July 2010

The Madeleine Foundation's response to Carter-Ruck


This letter, reproduced below, is the Madeleine Foundation's response to a communication from Carter-Ruck on behalf of their clients, Kate and Gerry McCann. The communication from Carter-Ruck can be read on a previous post on this blog.


6 St. Andrew Street

Wednesday 21 July 2010

Your ref: Stevie Loughrey


Dear Sirs

re: Your clients Dr Gerald and Dr Kate McCann - Your letter of 16 July

This letter follows my responses to your e-mail of 15 July by telephone from
Bournemouth on Friday 16 July at 10.28am and again at 1.28pm and my e-mail to you dated 19 July (reproduced below) and timed at 7.36am.

Further actions following receipt of your letter

In addition to the actions mentioned in my previous e-mail that we have already taken in response to your letter of 15 July, we have made several further changes to the material on our website concerning Mr Gonçalo Amaral, Gonçalo Amaral Day etc. In specific response to the demands you made about our leaflet, The Madeleine Foundation has decided in addition not to distribute this leaflet any further nor print further copies of it. Several thousand copies had already been distributed in the weeks leading up to Saturday 17 July which we termed ‘Gonçalo Amaral Awareness Day’.

The claims of breaches of my undertakings given on 13 November 2009

I have carefully studied your letter.

You claim that: “We have advised our clients [the McCanns] that your conduct represented a number of clear breaches of your undertaking to the court…it is clear that on a number of occasions you have breached [your] undertaking…there can be no doubt whatsoever that notwithstanding your undertakings, you remain intent upon continuing to allege at every available opportunity that there are strong grounds to suspect our clients of being responsible for the death of their daughter, and of conspiring to cover it up”.

In support of this claim, your letter refers specifically to the following six matters only:

  1. My letter to Theresa May, Home Secretary, dated 4 July 2010, a copy of which you and your clients have clearly seen
  2. A posting on a thread on a forum now called ‘The complete mystery of Madeleine McCann’, run by a Mrs Jill Havern. The title of this forum was I understand named after your clients’ Chief Public Relations Officer, Mr Clarence Mitchell, himself referred to the disappearance of Madeleine as ‘a complete mystery’ in a Channel 4 TV interview in March this year
  3. The contents of The Madeleine Foundation’s recent leaflet: ‘Your Questions Answered About Gonçalo Amaral’, of which you claim “…readers of this publication will have understood it to mean that here are indeed strong grounds to support Amaral’s suspicions that Madeleine McCann died in our clients’ care and that they subsequently conspired to cover up her death…”
  4. An internet posting by me on a forum, said to have been made at 1.03am on 12 July which you said “…would lead readers to have understood that Amarals’ theory is correct and that our clients did indeed conspire to cover up the death of their daughter. This theory is, however, completely untruehe sees as the truth [my underlining] about… Madeleine…” [your underlining] and simply does not withstand proper scrutiny’. You based this on my words that “Amaral…has sacrificed the rest of his career to bring us what
  5. Allegedly ‘hiding behind’ quotes or purported quotes from other people ‘when publishing outrageous slurs of our clients’ (although you do not cite a single example in your letter)
  6. The video recording: ‘Madeleine McCann: The 48 Police Questions Kate McCann Refused to Answer’.

You do not give particulars of any other alleged breaches of my undertakings.

You also in the penultimate paragraph of your letter advised that any individual ‘linked to’ The Madeleine Foundation’ who ‘disseminates serious falsehoods’ about your clients places her/himself at risk of being pursued for ‘appropriate legal relief’.

On page 3 of your letter, you made four demands. I respond as follows:

Demand 1. The Madeleine Foundation has agreed not to republish ‘Your Questions Answered About Gonçalo Amaral’ nor to authorise anyone else to republish it. We shall not be making any further distribution of the leaflet.

Demand 2. The downloadable version of ‘Your Questions Answered About Gonçalo Amaral’ was removed on 18 July from The Madeleine Foundation website as a result of your request. The non-downloadable version has also been removed from our website since your letter. Other material about Gonçalo Amaral remains on our website though in view of the undertaking I gave to the court we do not on The Madeleine Foundation website link to his book nor indeed to the documentary he made, although as you must know, many other forums and blogs do so.

Demand 3. The YouTube video you refer to which went live on 13 July was removed by YouTube as you already know on 16 July. We have no plans to republish it on YouTube or elsewhere. Having said that, we do not accept that to reproduce what the Portuguese Police have themselves published as the official record of the questions they asked Dr Kate McCann can possibly be construed as ‘libellous’, especially since these have been in the public domain for almost two years and, so far as I am aware, your clients have made no challenge to date as to their authenticity. The BBC website carries exactly the same list of 48 questions that your client refused to answer; it can easily be found in its archive for 2008

Demand 4. I have endeavoured at all times to draw a distinction between the information which Mr Amaral gives in ‘The Truth About A Lie’ about his investigation and the deductions he makes from that information. For example, in explaining the ‘Gonçalo Amaral Support Project’, we wrote this: Why is G.A.S.P. needed? ANSWER: Before giving you the details, why did we set up our new campaign on behalf of Mr Amaral? Our reasons include: The fact that without his book, A Verdade da Mentira (‘The Truth About A Lie’) there is much important information [my underlining] surrounding the disappearance of Madeleine McCann that otherwise we would not know”. To give one example, in one chapter of his book, Mr Amaral explains how your clients’ friend Jane Tanner on the afternoon of Sunday 13 May came to identify Robert Murat as the man wearing mustard chinos she said she’d seen carrying a child at around 9.15am on Thursday 3 May, the night Madeleine was reported missing. These and other facts, we say, are important to an understanding of the case, whether Mr Amaral is right, or mistaken, in his views on what really happened to Madeleine.

To give a second example, Mr Amaral explains how, when he was re-interviewed by police on 10 and 11 July 2007, Mr Murat gave a very different story about his movements from 1 to 4 May 2007 inclusive than he did when first taken in for questioning on 14 May. We are advised that there can be no ban on reasonable discussion of these and other important facts in Mr Amaral’s book. His theory is another matter.

I am happy to repeat my undertakings given previously to the court. In particular, in the light of your e-mail, I will refrain from suggesting that Mr Amaral’s suspicions about your client may be correct, whilst at the same time we are advised that to continue reasonable discussion of the information he has provided us is not libellous.

So far as Mr Amaral is concerned, it must also be remembered that your clients’ libel action against him has not yet been heard. It could well be that the Portuguese libel court will not uphold your clients’ allegation of libel. He has just as much right to defend himself against what he sees as lies and smears against him in the British media (and to have people in Portugal, the U.K. and elsewhere support him), as your clients have a similar right to defend themselves against what they claim is libel.

In your clients’ case, they appear to have been able to call on the services of your firm with regularity. As your clients have but one wage-earner, it seems reasonably clear that your fees must be being paid from other sources, possibly unnamed benefactors (such payments would of course be liable to be declared to the Inland Revenue as income). One assumes that the donations made by the general public to the Find Madeleine Fund are not being used since we recall statements by your clients and their Chief Public Relations Officer that those donations would not be used to fund lawyers’ fees and court costs etc. Mr Amaral is in a very different and difficult financial position. There does not appear therefore to be an ‘equality of arms’ in the current libel action against Mr Amaral although this principle is now enshrined in British civil litigation. That is another reason behind our support for him.

Furthermore, the legal advice I have received is that neither myself nor anyone else can be prohibited by a libel court or otherwise from reporting on and making reasonable comment on information in the public domain, and especially so given that this information comes specifically from police sources. I give two examples. The interim report of Inspector Tavares de Almeida, dated 10 September 2007, gives an accurate summary of the police investigation up to that point. It has been published. It can therefore be commented on, both by those who disagree with what he says, and those who agree.

Similarly, in the interlocutory hearing in your clients’ libel action in Lisbon in January 2010, the Public Ministry Prosecutor, Magalhães e Menezes, who made the decision to archive the investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance, was quoted by the press as saying: “The death thesis is the most likely one to explain Madeleine McCann’s disappearance”. Furthermore, Inspector Tavares de Almeida, who was actively involved in the investigation, was quoted in the same hearing as saying: “Gonçalo Amaral does not usurp the conclusions of the investigation; his conclusions come from investigation itself”.

These comments were made on oath in a court of law. They cannot easily be dismissed. The legal advice I have received is that anyone is entitled to publish these statements (as the Portuguese press and media have done) and, within reason, comment on them. Similarly, as you will appreciate, the final report of the Policia Judiciara archiving the investigation specifically left on the table the two main theories in the case: (a) that Madeleine was abducted and (b) that Madeleine died in your clients’ apartment.

This incidentally is why I and others have raised perfectly legitimate concerns with the Home Office about the statements that have been made in the press since March about your clients having meetings with the former and current Home Secretaries and their senior civil servants about a possible ‘review’ or ‘re-investigation’ into Madeleine’s disappearance. It appeared to us (we may be wrong) that your clients were seeking to persuade the Home Office to approach an as-yet unnamed British police force to carry out a re-investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance which would have concentrated exclusively on your clients’ assertions that Madeleine was abducted, and would not examine other possibilities.

As I have done in the YouTube video of the ‘48 Portuguese Police Questions’ which your client refused to answer, I will in any comments on the disappearance of Madeleine give due prominence to your clients’ ‘take’ on any matter. In that YouTube video, I refrained from making any comment except to ensure that, right at the beginning, your client’s position was fairly explained, i.e. your client’s right to silence, your client having relied on legal advice in refusing to answer questions, and your client believing the police were wholly wrong to place her under suspicion instead of looking for Madeleine.

The Madeleine Foundation Committee has asked me to point out that under our Constitution, our objects include: “To pursue - in conjunction with others - the truth about Madeleine McCann’s disappearance on 3 May 2007”. The Committee plans to continue to research and analyse all aspects of the disappearance of Madeleine and that includes giving due prominence to all cogent evidence that Madeleine was abducted.

I reproduce my e-mail sent on Monday (19th) below.

Yours faithfully

Anthony Bennett

E-mail sent to Stevie Loughrey of Carter-Ruck 19 July 2010

Dear Sirs,

Both myself and some members of The Madeleine Foundation Committee have now had an opportunity to view your letter.

This follows my telephone call to you from Bournemouth at 10.42am on Friday 16 July and my voicemail message left at 1.28pm the same day, to neither of which you responded.

In response to your letter e-mailed to me at 6.10pm on Thursday 15 July:

(1) The '48 Questions' video with myself reading out the 48 questions that your client Dr. Kate McCann refused to answer on 7 September 2007 does not seem to us to be capable of being construed as libellous. Not only is it merely the reading out of the questions she refused to answer, but I took the specific precaution in the introduction to the video, acting on legal advice, to put your client's point of view, namely:

a) that she had the right to remain silent (under both Portuguese and British law) and was acting on legal advice, and

b) that she believed the Portuguese Police were in error in suspecting her and her husband of any involvement in the disappearance of Madeleine, and were not therefore looking for Madeleine as she believed they should have been.

Your letter asks me to "Remove the video referred to above from YouTube'.

The video was taken down by YouTube during Friday 16 July. Your letter urged us to 'seek legal advice upon this letter...' I am in the process of seeking legal advice and that will include advice on whether that YouTube video is libellous.

(2) You asked for the leaflet about Mr Goncalo Amaral 'to be removed from our website(s)'. The Madeleine Foundation Committee agreed to remove this last night, and where the downloadable version used to be, there is now the following notice:

"On 15th July Carter Ruck asked us to remove this downloadable leaflet on Goncalo Amaral. We have agreed to this request pending receipt of legal advice".

(3) You objected to a paragraph in a posting I made on 4 July this year on a forum run by Jill Havern, at this link.


I have taken immediate action to remove the paragraph you objected to and the following notice now appears on Mrs Havern's forum instead of the offending paragraph:

NOTE: The first sentence of this posting has been removed following legal objections to it raised by Mr Stevie Loughrey of Carter-Ruck in a letter I received from them on 15 July 2010.

(4) In the light of your letter, an urgent review of the content of The Madeleine Foundation website has been undertaken, and last night additional material and links have been removed where there was a doubt in our minds as to whether any material could be construed as libellous.

I shall address the remainder of your letter as soon as practicable and of course after taking the legal advice which you urge me to take in the final sentence of your letter.

Finally, your letter is marked: 'STRICTLY PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL'. I should like to advise you that a vociferous and regular supporter of your client on the internet, namely 'muratfan', whom we believe to be Mr Ian West of Norwich, is boasting that he has read your letter.

Yours faithfully

Tony Bennett

Thursday, 22 July 2010

"Analysis of the case of missing person Madeleine McCann," by German author Daniela Prousa


Analyse des Vermisstenfalles Madeleine McCann by Daniela Prousa

This 603 page book is written by German author and psychiatrist, Daniela Prousa. It is basically the author's conclusions about the case based on analysis of the personalities of the two main players, Kate and Gerry McCann.

Through analysis of their statements and what they said and how they behaved in public appearances, Daniela Prousa comes to a startling conclusion.

Prousa's conclusion is that Madeleine McCann died as a result of an accidental fall off the sofa, either immediately after her parents left the apartment or after Gerry McCann's check at around 9.10pm.

The author is also of the opinion that it was Kate McCann who initially found her daughter and that Gerry McCann came in later to support her in covering up.

In this weighty tome, the author refers to the opinions of Dr. Christian Ludke and also cites Dr Gonçalo Amaral's book.


Amazon's German web site

For an excellent review of Prousa's book, see "McCann Exposure," Wordpress blog. Here is an extract:

Analyse des Vermisstenfalles Madeleine McCann is written by German author and psychiatrist, Daniela Prousa. It is essentially an interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) of the McCann’s given accounts regarding the disappearance of their daughter Madeleine McCann. Prousa examined in detail how the McCann’s make sense of and perceive significant events in their lives, namely the events conceived on the evening of May 3rd 2007, the night Madeleine disappeared. She obtained data from many written and visual expressions of the McCann’s, via their blog on their website, media statements and interviews and television appearances. During her study she asked curious and critical questions of their accounts, actions and emotions – verbal and non-verbal – such as “What is this person trying to achieve here?” and “Is something leaking out here that wasn’t intended?”

Through her analysis, Prousa concluded that Madeleine McCann died because of an accidental fall off the sofa, either immediately after her parents left the apartment or shortly after Gerry McCann’s check at around 9.10pm. Further, she believes that it was Kate McCann who initially found Madeleine and that Gerry came in later to support her in covering up the accidental death of their daughter.

Read the rest of the review Here

Updated: McCann search businessman, Kevin Halligen, in court today


According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Kevin Halligen, the businessman whose company Oakley International was paid £300,000 by Kate and Gerry McCann to search for their daughter, will appear in court today, Thursday, facing extradition to the United States, to face charges of fraud and money-laundering.

So, how come this hasn't hit the UK media?* And how come the McCanns are not jumping up and down demanding their money back? They don't seem to have had much luck with their private detectives, do they?

The Sydney Morning Herald brings us news that the UK media appears not to be taking any notice of, which seems odd to me when anything vaguely smelling of McCann usually gets front page coverage in at least one tabloid. Don't Messrs Edgar and Cowley wish to question Mr Halligen about what he has done with all that dosh? Why so quiet intrepid investigators?

*Update: Belfast Telegraph

In The First Post,
23rd November 2009, we read that the McCanns were suspicious of Halligen from the start. Well, why hand over all that money? Didn't they learn to be more careful after the Metodo 3 fiasco, when they were promised that their daughter would be home by Christmas? So, let's ask the question: why aren't the McCanns on the list of people seeking recompense from Kevin Halligen? The money he was paid was supposed to be used in the search for Madeleine, so why no publicity today in the UK media about this man who swindled a 'vulnerable family.'? Maybe it just wasn't the McCanns' own money anyway and as far as that fund is concerned, it almost appears to be, 'easy come, easy go.'

More than two years after the disappearance of Madeleine McCann from the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz, it has emerged that Kevin Halligen, a British security consultant hired by the Find Madeleine fund, allegedly conned detectives working on the case out of £300,000.

Halligen, whose firm, Oakley International, is based in Washington DC, was paid £500,000 by the fund to employ private investigators to look for the missing girl. But the Sunday Times has reported that he failed to pay them the money, and has now gone on the run. One detective, Henri Exton, a former national head of undercover operations for the British police, claims that Halligen personally owes him £100,000.

An unnamed friend of Kate and Gerry McCann said that they had suspicions about Halligen, a 50-year-old businessman with a colourful past, from the start. "He had this sense of cloak and dagger, acting as if he were a James Bond-style spy," the friend said. "He promised the earth but it came to nothing."

Another source claimed that Halligen promised to use his contacts in Washington to find satellite images of Praia da Luz and lists of telephone calls from the evening of May 3, 2007, but failed to do so. "All he came up with was a Google Earth image," the source said.

The Conservative MP for the McCann’s constituency of Charnwood, Stephen Dorrell, said: "This man clearly saw a vulnerable family going through a terrible ordeal and the only thing he was focused on was that there were people offering money to help find Madeleine."

Sydney Morning Herald - 22/07/2010

A businessman whose firm helped look for Madeleine McCann and who is wanted in the US over an alleged STG1.3 million ($A2.24 million) fraud will face an extradition hearing on Thursday.

Irish national Kevin Halligen, 48, is accused by prosecutors in America of attempting to defraud a London law firm of $US2.1 million ($A2.4 million).

The defendant's assets were frozen after his arrest on November 24.

Officers acting on a request from US law enforcement agencies detained Halligen after finding him in a hotel in Oxford where he had been staying under an assumed name.

The alleged crimes for which he is wanted in the US relate to money taken from a Dutch company, Trafigura, as part of a deal to secure the release of executives under arrest in the Ivory Coast.

Instead it was spent on, amongst other things, a mansion and a gift to his girlfriend, it is alleged.

The businessman's firm Oakley International had been employed by Kate and Gerry McCann for about six months in 2008 to look for their missing daughter.

In all the Washington-based firm was paid around STG300,000 ($A517,687.66) for its services by the McCanns.

The extradition hearing will take place at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Carter-Ruck's three page letter to Tony Bennett of The Madeleine Foundation.

This letter was sent to Tony Bennett of The Madeleine Foundation following the uploading to YouTube of the video of Tony Bennett reading the 48 questions that Kate McCann refused to answer in September 2007.

Baroness Eliza Manningham-Buller has been noted as saying: confidential means everyone knows about it, whereas MI5 has 'secrets and top secrets.' So, here is the 'STRICTLY PRIVATE & CONFIDENTIAL,' letter from Carter-Ruck to Tony Bennett

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

McCanns - Their Best Moments. Part 2


Gerry McCann pulling his ear lobe when responding to Sandra's question about giving the kids, "Something like Calpol to help them sleep." One of the best indicators of lying!

Kate and Gerry McCann almost didn't come for this interview, the voice over says, but they steeled themselves in what was an incredibly tough week for them on the anniversary of their daughter's disappearance.

However, watch through to 2.40 - 2.46. As soon as they think the interview is over and the cameras have stopped rolling, they bounce out of their chairs laughing! Oh what fun we had!

Kate McCann trying to get her lips under control!

Asked about what Gerry and Kate have told the twins, Philomena McCann says, "Gerry and Kate have not told them where she is." Ooooops!

The McCanns interviewed in Lisbon. At 0.55 - 1.06 when Kate McCann is explaining what she found when she went to do her check at 10pm, she mentions that the door was quite wide open, then she says, "When I went to close the door, it slammed, and that's when I noticed that Madeleine was there.."

Oh dear Philomena! "To suggest in any possible way that Kate and Gerry are negligible parents.." (0.25 - 0.33)

Monday, 19 July 2010

Tony Bennett reading the 48 questions Kate McCann refused to answer

Another video deleted, but you can still view it here: http://gasparstatements.blogspot.com/

This is the video that was removed from YouTube. It is simply Tony Bennett of The Madeleine Foundation reading aloud the 48 questions that Kate McCann refused to answer in September 2007 when she was questioned under the status of arguida by the Portuguese police.

Your Questions Answered About Gonçalo Amaral


Doctor Gonçalo Amaral, former police officer in charge of the Madeleine McCann case.

On July 15th, Carter Ruck, acting for their clients Kate and Gerry McCann, asked The Madeleine Foundation to remove a downloadable leaflet from its web site. The Madeleine Foundation has complied with that request pending receipt of legal advice. The following is the content of that leaflet.

In this leaflet, we try to answer your questions about Mr Gonçalo Amaral, the Portuguese detective who led the investigation into the reported disappearance of Madeleine McCann on Thursday, 3 May 2007. Four months later, Mr Amaral stunned the world by pulling in the McCanns for questioning as suspects in the disappearance of their daughter. Three days later, an interim report from Chief Inspector Tavares de Almeida, the senior investigating officer in the case, gave reasons for the police’s belief that Madeleine had died in her parents’ apartment.

Less than a month later, Mr Amaral was removed from the investigation (not ‘sacked’ as the media claimed). The British media have, since then, criticised his investigation, often referring to him as ‘disgraced’. He was accused of beating a Portuguese woman, Leonor Cipriano, into falsely confessing to murdering her daughter. He retired from the police to write a book, A Verdade da Mentira, ‘The Truth About A Lie’. In it, he explains why he and his team had good grounds for believing Madeleine had died in her parents’ apartment and covered up her death. A year after his book came out, the McCanns brought a libel action in the Lisbon High Court claiming, as damages, the £1 million profits he and his publishers had made from the book’s sale in 9 European countries. The case will be concluded later this year. We felt it was time the British public knew the facts about Mr Amaral. Here we answer some frequent questions people have about him:

1. What career did Mr Amaral have before he led the Madeleine enquiry?

ANSWER: Mr Amaral was an experienced, respected, senior detective. One of his colleagues described him as ‘incorruptible’. He had many successes in bringing drug dealers to justice and in one year netted the biggest haul of illegal drugs of any detective in Portugal. His most famous case was his success in bringing the killers of 8-year-old Joana Cipriano to court and ensuring that they served long jail sentences for their appalling crimes.

2. Wasn’t Mr Amaral accused of beating and torturing Joana Cipriano’s mother into making a false confession?

ANSWER: Yes he was. And most unjustly. Joana was reported missing by her mother, only after she had apparently been missing for two days. The sad truth was that Joana had come back from the village shops to find her mother in bed with her uncle. After an intensive investigation led by Mr Amaral, both voluntarily confessed to having brutally murdered her and disposed of her body. Today they are serving 16-year-jail terms for her murder.

3. What about the photos of her in the press showing her with black eyes?

ANSWER: Since being convicted of their crimes, both the mother and the uncle have tried to claim they were beaten by Mr Amaral and his men and forced to confess to something they had not done. However, it is clear that Leonor Cipriano suffered her injuries as a result of a beating by fellow female prisoners after being taken to Odemira Prison. During a recent court case, the Director of Odemira Prison was forced to admit to asking her Prison Medical Director to lie about the cause of Ms Cipriano’s injuries. Ms Cipriano changed her story many times.

4. Why was Mr Amaral removed from the Madeleine investigation?

ANSWER: Shortly before he was removed, he made some ‘off the record’ comments to a Portuguese journalist detailing how the British government was interfering with his investigation. A leading Portuguese newspaper published his remarks, giving the Portuguese authorities an excuse to remove him from the enquiry. As Mr Amaral has set out in a second book, ‘The English Gag’, Prime Minister Gordon Brown was told of his being removed from his post before he was. Mr Amaral has provided evidence of British government interference in his enquiries in his two books on the case. As we have shown elsewhere, the British government heavily influenced this investigation from the outset, sending several top-level people out to Portugal in the first week alone, including staff from MI5. We aim to cover this topic in more detail on our website in the coming months.

5. Wasn’t his enquiry incompetent, as the British news media suggest?

ANSWER: No. As was clear from the interim police report of 10 September 2007, the investigation was severely hampered by overwhelming international media coverage, requiring the police to follow up literally hundreds of false ‘sightings’ of Madeleine. Despite that, the police conducted a meticulous investigation with the help of hundreds of police officers. The interim report was very thorough. We have reproduced the whole of it in our recent book on the case: ‘The Madeleine McCann case Files: Volume 1’, available for purchase from our website.

6. But isn’t it true that the police failed to secure the crime scene properly?

ANSWER: This is one of many false stories about the Madeleine McCann investigation put about in the British media. What most people do not know is that despite the McCanns and their friends apparently genuinely believing that an abductor had taken Madeleine from her room, they themselves tramped all over the McCanns’ apartment and allowed several others to do so before the police arrived. This contaminated the crime scene, making the Portuguese police’s task much more difficult. In fact, the police sealed the crime scene later that night as soon as they were reasonably able to. The McCanns also criticised Mr Amaral, amongst other things, for never meeting them and never visiting the crime scene. But then the head of any major criminal investigation must be a good delegator. Mr Amaral’s enquiry was also hampered by many inconsistencies in the accounts given by he McCanns and their friends and by the McCanns’ refusal to disclose certain information such as their telephone, credit card and medical records.

7. Is it true that Mr Amaral and his publishers have made £1 million from the sale of Mr Amaral’s book?

ANSWER: Yes. We must remember that in trying to bring us the truth about what really happened to Madeleine Mr Amaral gave up his job many years ahead of his normal retirement date, thus losing huge amounts of both salary and pension entitlement. The McCanns threatened to sue Mr Amaral and his publishers for libel when his book. ‘The Truth About A Lie’, was first published in July 2008. But they did nothing about it until over a year later, by which time his book had sold over half a million copies across Europe. The McCanns have never explained why they waited for over a year to take action, but they are now claiming the £1 million profits the book has made. As a result of the McCanns’ libel action, Mr Amaral’s book has been banned from sale in Portugal since September 2009.

8. Was Mr Amaral convicted of filing a false report in the Cipriano case?

ANSWER: Yes. However, he has appealed, and under Portuguese law his sentence, a suspended prison term of 18 months, cannot take effect until his appeal is heard. He was found not guilty of any suggestion of being involved in the alleged beating of Leonor Cipriano and her brother. On the basis of precious little evidence, he was found guilty of ‘filing a false report’ about the case. There are many indications that Mr Amaral’s trial was politically motivated. In this connection we would commend our article on the prosecutor in this case, Mr Marcos Correia. We have a lengthy investigative article about him on our website.

9. What kind of help and support does Mr Amaral need?

ANSWER: His most urgent need is for financial help towards the huge costs of his legal expenses for defending the McCanns’ libel action and the various unjust criminal charges bring levelled against him. It is very easy to support him; his representative Mr Paulo Sargento has created a website to give practical help to him. You can donate by PayPal. Here is the link: http://pjga.blogspot.com/


Sunday, 18 July 2010

McCanns - Their Best Moments.

Video uploaded to YouTube by Claudia7929. An excellent video Claudia!

The video highlights some of the most significant moments of the Maddie case. Here are a few I have selected for special attention:

0.00 - 0.16: Eddie the 'cadaver dog,' alerting to cadaver odour around the McCanns' vehicle they hired three weeks after Madeleine disappeared. Martin Grime points out that Eddie can smell the odour emanating from around the door seals.

0.19 - 0.30: Keela, the CSI dog, who is trained to detect traces of human blood, in the boot of the hired car, demonstrating her 'passive alert,' signal by becoming still with her nose pointing to the area where she has detected the odour.

0.31 - 0.43: Eddie investigating clothing that was taken from the McCanns' rented villa, alerting to specific items: Kate McCann's checked trousers; a white top belonging to Kate McCann; a child's red T shirt.

0.45 - 1.04: Eddie in apartment 5A, examining the McCanns' wardrobe, giving his barking alert which would indicate the presence of cadaver odour. Eddie will also alert to human blood, but since Keela did not alert in this area, it can be assumed that Eddie was alerting to cadaver odour.

1.05 - 1.42: Eddie in the lounge/dining area of apartment 5A. Martin Grime seems to be trying to draw Eddie's attention to the curtains behind the sofa, but Eddie appears to be desperate to get behind the sofa. He is then seen running in and out and barking furiously.

1.42 - 2.04: Keela's 'passive alert,' to the possible presence of human blood behind the sofa.

2.20 - 2.40: Eddie running around the sink unit in the McCanns' rented accommodation, seen sniffing round the cupboard doors and jumping up at the sink. He is detecting something there and Madeleine's soft toy, Cuddle Cat is revealed hidden in the cupboard.

5.00 - 5.16: Sandra Felgueiras asks the McCanns if they gave their children, 'something like Calpol to help them sleep.' Gerry McCann states that they are not going to comment, 'but there is absolutely no way we used any sedative drugs...' at which point Gerry McCann makes one of the best known gestures that indicate lying: he pulls at his ear lobe.

6.08 - 6.20: Kate McCann talking about Madeleine's having asked why they did not come when she and Sean were crying. Kate McCann dismisses Madeleine's comment as 'a passing remark.' How could any mother dismiss her child's question about being alone and crying and no one coming as 'a passing remark.'?

7.20 - 7.40: Kate McCann talking about the small window of opportunity the abductor had to take Madeleine. She looks like she's having trouble getting her mouth under control. Too much free vino?

7.40 - 8.15: The McCanns are asked about returning to Praia da Luz to participate in a reconstruction of the events surrounding their daughter's disappearance. Gerry McCann comments that he would be concerned about the world-wide media attention and also wonders 'what additional information would be gained from such a process.' Well, it might have served to highlight the apparent inconsistencies in witness statements given by Kate and Gerry and their merry band of holiday mates.

Also, if the Madeleine had been abducted and the McCanns were desperate to find witnesses, then the world-wide media attention had the potential to jog a few memories of people who were in the area at the time, but I think the possibility of the inconsistencies showing up was much more important to them.

8.15 - 9.11: Jane Hill of the BBC asks Kate McCann if she felt like getting out there and searching for her daughter when some residents of Praia da Luz had taken a week off work to search the area. Kate McCann sighs, tuts, takes her time to answer and then really evades the question by talking about how hard they were working and how they were almost totally non-functioning in the first 48 hours.

So, after those first 48 hours, did she get out there and help with the search? No! The McCanns addressed the world's media, they walked along the beach holding hands and I guess they were very busy, as Kate McCann says, 'doing other things.' Just like they must have been busy doing other things when Madeleine found herself alone and crying and no one came, the McCanns were too busy doing other things to get themselves out there and physically search for her.

The McCanns should feel ashamed of some of the things they didn't do in the supposed search for their daughter: no search in those first few days when others blistered their feet in the hunt; no involvement in a reconstruction; Kate McCann's not answering those 48 questions. I'm sure there are many more examples, but those will do for now. Shame on you Kate and Gerry McCann, that you should call yourselves responsible parents. Shame on you.

Kate McCann: those questions she refused to answer - part 2


OK let's take a look at a couple more of those 48 questions.

2. Did you search inside the bedroom wardrobe? (she replied that she wouldn’t answer)

3. (shown 2 photographs of her bedroom wardrobe) Can you describe its contents?

We know that the only question Kate McCann answered in 11 hours of interrogation was question 49. So, having been shown photographs of her wardrobe taken on the night of Madeleine's disappearance, she refused to describe what she saw in them.

Blue bag in wardrobe

The above is an image of the wardrobe from the official police files. I can make out what looks like a heap of laundry on the second shelf from the bottom, a holdall on the next shelf up and perhaps something thin and flat two shelves up from there.

In police interrogation, one question often leads to another. So, what might the follow-up question have been to the one about describing the contents of the wardrobe? Where is that holdall? Do you still have that bag? There were stories about a blue sports bag disappearing and Gerry McCann denied ever having such a bag in Praia da Luz, but that looks rather like something that could be described as a (navy) blue sports bag.

When the English police contingent in Praia da Luz brought over the sniffer dogs, Eddie and Keela and their trainer Martin Grime, Eddie the Enhanced Victim Recovery Dog showed very keen interest in the wardrobe.


The above image shows Eddie next to the wardrobe in the McCanns' bedroom in apartment 5A, head in the air, barking. This is how Eddie alerts to having detected the odour he is trained to find: cadaver odour.

So, was there anything in the wardrobe, which was in the photographs shown to Kate McCann, that would have led to further very awkward questions? That navy blue holdall? The heap of clothes that look like they've just been thrown in there?

The Portuguese police obviously felt that the contents of the McCanns wardrobe had some significance in this case, which we can see was backed up by the reactions of Eddie the 'cadaver dog.'

No wonder Kate McCann looked somewhat shell-shocked when she was brought out of the police station, after having been constituted 'arguida.' Images of Eddie alerting to cadaver odour behind the sofa and in her wardrobe, as well as in other places and on her clothes, possibly left her wondering how quickly she could get on a plane and get out of there!

And then, of course, there was Keela, the CSI dog, alerting in many of the same places to the presence of blood!

Rather than, as she subsequently claimed, the PJ tried to incriminate her, in my opinion and possibly in the eyes of a good proportion of the general public, Kate McCann incriminated herself, in a way, by her refusal to answer these questions.

The McCanns found explanations for the presence of cadaver odour and blood found in their hired vehicle, which led to both sniffer dogs alerting, but I don't think I have read of their offering any explanation for Eddie alerting in the area of the wardrobe. Keela did not give her alert signal in the wardrobe, so Eddie was alerting to cadaver odour. Perhaps that's where Kate McCann kept the clothes she was wearing at work when she had allegedly been the physician attending 6 deaths before her holiday. Yea right!

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Kate McCann: those questions she refused to answer - part 1

Kate McCann on her way out of the police station after being constituted arguida.

Taking a look at a few of those 48 questions that Kate McCann refused to answer when she was questioned as an arguida. Let's start with this question about the curtains behind the sofa:

4. Why had the curtain behind the sofa in front of the side window (whose photo was shown to her) been tampered with? Did somebody go behind that sofa?

We know that the sofa had been pushed up against the wall under the window, but this is a very specific question, not about the sofa itself, but about the curtain. I wonder what led the PJ to suggest that the curtain had been tampered with? The 48 questions put to Kate McCann were clearly not random or vague, but designed to elicit definite information about events and observations made by the PJ in apartment 5A on the night that Madeleine McCann disappeared.

A piece of information we do have is that both Eddie (EVRD) and Keela (CSI dog) gave their alerts to an area behind the sofa.

Did someone go behind the sofa? Seems like a fairly innocuous question, but it wasn't answered. Not by Kate McCann, anyway, but there was an answer to an unasked question by Eddie.
What did the person do who went behind the sofa?

Eddie dog seems to know that something went on behind that sofa even if he doesn't know by whom.

Dogs don't lie and they may not even know what the question is, but dogs like Eddie do provide answers in their own way.

Kate McCann stated at the time that the PJ's questions were not aimed at finding Madeleine, but at incriminating her. What might be incriminating about asking, "Did someone go behind that sofa?"

I guess this question may have come after Kate McCann had been shown videos of them doggies at work. Yes, Kate McCann, why were those doggies so interested in the area behind the sofa? Considering that you claim to have carried rotting meat and leaking nappies in your hired car, I doubt very much that you were bending over behind that sofa every day with a feather duster! I could imagine you down there on your hands and knees, though, with a bucket of bleach for some reason! By all accounts some scrubber had been behind that sofa!

Why would someone who carries rotting meat in a hired car scrub the floor tiles in a rented apartment? So, question 4 is a very good one: who went behind that sofa and what did they do?

Updated - Madeleine McCann: the 48 questions Kate McCann refused to answer in September 2007

Tony Bennett of The Madeleine Foundation reading the questions that Kate McCann refused to answer when she was interviewed as an 'arguida,' or formal suspect, in September 2007.

This video has been removed by YouTube for stated, "Terms of use violation," which does not make sense to me as the 48 questions being read aloud by Tony Bennett have been in the public domain for quite some time.

Here are the questions as published by the BBC on August 6th 2008. The first 48 are the questions that Kate McCann refused to answer, while number 49 is the one question she did give a response to.

1. On May 3 2007, around 22:00, when you entered the apartment, what did you see? What did you do? Where did you look? What did you touch?

2. Did you search inside the bedroom wardrobe? (she replied that she wouldn’t answer)

3. (shown 2 photographs of her bedroom wardrobe) Can you describe its contents?

4. Why had the curtain behind the sofa in front of the side window (whose photo was shown to her) been tampered with? Did somebody go behind that sofa?

5. How long did your search of the apartment take after you detected your daughter Madeleine’s disappearance?

6. Why did you say from the start that Madeleine had been abducted?

7. Assuming Madeleine had been abducted, why did you leave the twins home alone to go to the ‘Tapas’ and raise the alarm? Because the supposed abductor could still be in the apartment.

8. Why didn’t you ask the twins, at that moment, what had happened to their sister or why didn’t you ask them later on?

9. When you raised the alarm at the ‘Tapas’ what exactly did you say and what were your exact words?

10. What happened after you raised the alarm in the ‘Tapas’?

11. Why did you go and warn your friends instead of shouting from the verandah?

12. Who contacted the authorities?

13. Who took place in the searches?

14. Did anyone outside of the group learn of Madeleine’s disappearance in those following minutes?

15. Did any neighbour offer you help after the disappearance?

16. What does 'we let her down' mean?

17. Did Jane tell you that night that she’d seen a man with a child?

18. How were the authorities contacted and which police force was alerted?

19. During the searches, with the police already there, where did you search for Maddie, how and in what way?

20. Why did the twins not wake up during that search or when they were taken upstairs?

21. Who did you phone after the occurrence?

22. Did you call Sky News?

23. Did you know the danger of calling the media, because it could influence the abductor?

24. Did you ask for a priest?

25. By what means did you divulge Madeleine’s features, by photographs or by any other means?

26. Is it true that during the searches you remained seated on Maddie’s bed without moving?

27. What was your behaviour that night?

28. Did you manage to sleep?

29. Before travelling to Portugal did you make any comment about a foreboding or a bad feeling?

30. What was Madeleine’s behaviour like?

31. Did Maddie suffer from any illness or take any medication?

32. What was Madeleine’s relationship like with her brother and sister?

33. What was Madeleine’s relationship like with her brother and sister, friends and school mates?

34. As for your professional life, in how many and which hospitals have you worked?

35. What is your medical specialty?

36. Have you ever done shift work in any emergency services or other services?

37. Did you work every day?

38. At a certain point you stopped working, why?

39. Are the twins difficult to get to sleep? Are they restless and does that cause you uneasiness?

40. Is it true that sometimes you despaired with your children’s behaviour and that left you feeling very uneasy?

41. Is it true that in England you even considered handing over Madeleine’s custody to a relative?

42. In England, did you medicate your children? What type of medication?

43. In the case files you were SHOWN CANINE forensic testing films, where you can see them marking due to detection of the scent of human corpse and blood traces, also human, and only human, as well as all the comments of the technician in charge of them. After watching and after the marking of the scent of corpse in your bedroom beside the wardrobe and behind the sofa, pushed up against the sofa wall, did you say you couldn’t explain any more than you already had?

44. When the sniffer dog also marked human blood behind the sofa, did you say you couldn’t explain any more than you already had?

45. When the sniffer dog marked the scent of corpse coming from the vehicle you hired a month after the disappearance, did you say you couldn’t explain any more than you already had?

46. When human blood was marked in the boot of the vehicle, did you say you couldn’t explain any more than you already had?

47. When confronted with the results of Maddie’s DNA, whose analysis was carried out in a British laboratory, collected from behind the sofa and the boot of the vehicle, did you say you couldn’t explain any more than you already had?

48. Did you have any responsibility or intervention in your daughter’s disappearance?

And question 49, to which Kate McCann responded:

Q. Are you aware that in not answering the questions you are jeopardising the investigation, which seeks to discover what happened to your daughter?

A. 'Yes, if that’s what the investigation thinks.'