Wednesday, April 25, 2012

After Five Years, Heavy Police Resources Still Assigned To The Case Of The Missing Madeleine McCann

Posted by Our Main Posters

The case of Madeleine McCann.

In one respect, there’s this parallel to Meredith’s case. After five years police are still assigning major resources to close to their own complete satisfaction a vexatious and divisive case.

Unfortunately, the parallels end there.

In this case, it is the British police still assigning the resources (now close to four million pounds), in parallel to the relentless Italian effort for Meredith, because they fear that in light of cases like Elizabeth Smart and Jaycee Dugard the Portuguese police may have dropped the ball far too soon.

The Portuguese, in face of a confusing situation on the night when Madeleine disappeared, where the parents say they had left her home with younger twins while they had dinner 100 yards away, and a nervous Portuguese vacation industry, declared the parents as under suspicion in Madeline’s death and (see video above) aggressively furthered that meme.  They may have closed off kidnapping possibilities which in this day and age are far too real.

It may be that one day the British police eventually do conclude that her parents had a role in Madeleine’s disappearance and possible death, or simply declare that they have hit a brick wall.  But as Time and other UK and US news services are today reporting, they are concerned that the little girl is still out there, alive, and a kidnapper may be getting a free pass - and the opportunity to do it again.

The British police have released the two images below, showing how Madeleine looked back then and could now look at age nine. These are the latest developments according to the NY Times.

Scotland Yard released a statement saying its investigators had uncovered what they believed to be “genuinely new material,” as well as nearly 200 new opportunities for further inspection. Investigators said that they “now believe that there is a possibility Madeleine is still alive,” and have called for the investigation by Portuguese police to be reopened after an almost four-year hiatus….

While the initial investigation by the Portuguese authorities was roundly criticized, the British inquiry has been aided by the fact that, for the first time since Madeleine disappeared from her bedroom in the family’s rented apartment in the Algarve region of Portugal, investigators have been able to review material generated by three independent investigations, all in one location.

The detective leading the review said that having access to the Portuguese investigation, inquiries by British law enforcement agencies and the work of private investigators hired by the McCann family presents the team with “best opportunity” of finally solving the mystery of what happened in the seaside resort of Praia da Luz.

Rewards totaling millions of dollars were offered by wealthy Britons, including J. K. Rowling, the billionaire author of the Harry Potter series, and Richard Branson, the airline tycoon. But the Portuguese police identified only one suspect, a 33-year-old Britain living with his mother in a nearby apartment….

Detectives have been painstakingly sifting through “every single piece of paper” “” approximately 100,000 pages “” generated by the original investigation, on the basis that sometimes it takes fresh eyes to see what was always there….

Mr. Redwood rejected the conspiracy theories that have circulated about Madeleine’s parents’ involvement. He said that the girl’s disappearance was the result of “a criminal act by a stranger.”

It will come as renewed encouragement to the McCann family, whose ceaseless energy and reluctance to call off the search have been fundamental in keeping the case in the international spotlight. Since their daughter’s disappearance they have traveled to the Vatican for an audience with Pope Benedict XVI, who blessed a photograph of Madeleine, published a book and even appeared on the “Oprah Winfrey Show.”


The parents were interviewed for an hour on CNN USA and Global channels by Piers Morgan (Larry King’s successor) a few months ago.

For myself I had no strong opinion either way prior to watching them speak, but if it was all an act on their part it was a pretty compelling act.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 04/25/12 at 05:13 PM | #

I followed this story when it came out and it seems like the ‘tapas 7’,friends of the Mc Canns who were dining with them on the night of the ‘so- called’ disappearance, covered for them when they were questioned by Portugese police.

Also the Mc Canns immediately hired extradition lawyers before they even became suspects and apparently Gordon Brown, then Prime Minister made a political plea for them in the House of Commons without really knowing the full story. The Mc canns being doctors had political connections and called on them, apparently being assigned P.R help from Clarence Mitchell used by the Labor Party. 

Just as the Knoxes were told by their P.R people to repeat the lies over and over until they become true, I believe it was strategic P.R
in the Mc Canns case to talk about a kidnapping to the press until they were blue in the face. To sell it as fact that Maddie was kidnapped until the unsuspecting public took it as fact and it conveniently pulled on the heartstrings to boot.

There are plenty of witnesses on that holiday witnessing Maddie throwing temper tatrums. The hotel had babysitting services which were not used by the Mc Canns, why? Some believe that they got into the habit of giving Maddie sleep medication so that they could drink the night away with Maddie out cold and the twins being younger- fast asleep.

The fact is, they went out to dinner without their kids as did the other couples at the dinner and claimed they had ‘rotations’ to check on all the kids and when it was Kate’s turn she ran back to the group screaming ‘they took her! they took her!’. Why would she not say she’s gone or missing?

I believe Kate and Gerry gave Maddie something to sleep and she had a bad reaction causing death. Fearing losing their jobs as practicing doctors and/ or going to jail, the small body was brought most likely to the sea hours before and then they sat through dinner until it was time to sound the alarm.

Posted by Dennis on 04/26/12 at 12:23 AM | #

One thing I forgot to mention: Once the story became big news internationally, they had to continously make appeals in the press to ‘find her’ to keep any suspicion away from themselves.

  It became a vicious cycle and the press milked it for all it was worth, especially The Sun who I would say had the most biased reporting of all the tabloids and broadsheet news.

Posted by Dennis on 04/26/12 at 12:36 AM | #

Hi Dennis,

There is no evidence that the friends of the McCanns covered for them or that the McCanns had anything to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.

Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood, of Scotland Yard’s homicide and serious crime command seems certain that Gerry and Kate McCann had nothing to do with Madeleine’s disappearance:

“He unequivocally dismissed the conspiracy theory – promoted by the original Portuguese lead detective Goncalo Amaral – that the McCanns had anything to do with her disappearance.”

Posted by The Machine on 04/26/12 at 01:32 AM | #

Such a darling little girl.  One can only hope she is alive but it seems a slim chance.  What a strange story and mystery.  I’ve always wondered what happened.

Posted by believing on 04/26/12 at 06:18 AM | #

Hi distemper,

You’ve made a lot of unsubstantiated claims. Please cite credible sources such as witness statements, verbatim quotes etc to support your claims.

Posted by The Machine on 04/26/12 at 09:49 AM | #

Comments closed here for the moment if okay with everyone. We have to be careful about posting unsubstantiated claims as fact which is something we have always tried to stand for.

The UK law enforcement and prosecutors we are in indirect touch with are saying they believe on present evidence (not all of which is public) that this almost certainly WAS a kidnapping. So it would seem unfair here to pour scorn on efforts that might find Madeleine.

Many in the US have read up on child kidnappings in the context of the two extraordinary US cases linked to in the post above, and can see how ingenious child kidnappers can be. TV reports have now moved for the most part toward giving parents the benefit of the doubt.

By the way, long lists of Portuguese police errors were posted in several media reports yesterday, many originated within Portugal by Portuguese professionals who were less than happy with officialdom’s performance.

The Rome equivalent of the FBI which handled most of the investigation of Meredith’s case is highly sophisticated by comparison with the small Portuguese equivalent, and it works very closely with the FBI and exchanges professionals. (Steve Moore thought all the work was done by Perugians.)

This is a main reason why so many will continue to think the case against RS and AK still holds up and will always have real problems accepting notions of major bungling or a conspiracy.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 04/26/12 at 02:13 PM | #

Two posts by Dennis, above, express a reasonable & reasoned point of view.  He is very far from offering unsubstantiated claims of fact.

Questions of belief, perception, attitude, or of our wordless sense of things are never easy questions.

As for Chief Inspector Redwood, very well for his unequivocal dismissal of an idea, the idea that the McCanns had anything to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.

I would wish to give equal time to the Portuguese inspector (now resigned) who has cared enough to express his convictions in a book.

Posted by Ernest Werner on 04/26/12 at 06:18 PM | #

@machine, I don’t believe I have cited anything that could not be substantiated. All the information is out there in the public domain, TV interviews that they have given. Statements given to the police by the Tapas group that have been transcribed and published. And official documents that have been released for public viewing both by the Portuguese and also the British police. As for annual accounts for the “fund” these can all be viewed in full on the Companies House website at
I have formed my opinion based the interviews/documentaries they have given on TV. I have looked at the companies annual accounts and seen where the money has been spent. I have followed this since it happened. Having looked at various sites the most comprehensive is it shows official documents, all newpaper articles, documentaries etc,etc. There are a couple of people that write on there but even ignoring their analysis you can still get all the information I cited from just looking at witness statements, court documents and official public releases made by the police.
I agree a lot of mistakes were made by the police but that isn’t unique to Portugal but it seems very unfair for one man to be persecuted in the manner he has been. In the same way one person has taken the brunt of the blame in Perugia.

Posted by distemper on 04/27/12 at 03:03 AM | #

Perhaps the most remarkable similarity between these two cases (Meredith Kercher’s murder and Madeleine McCann’s disappearance) is the very early employment of PR/Crisis Management companies to spin the facts, both by the Knox/Mellas and the McCann families.

Not far short of that is the amount of lying engaged in by supposedly innocent parties.

The Machine is clearly quite wrong to state:

“There is no evidence that the friends of the McCanns covered for them or that the McCanns had anything to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.”

So why was Kate McCann so reluctant to answer the Policia Judiciaria’s questions about her actions on the night of the disappearance of her daughter, that she in fact refused to do so, despite acknowleding that:

“When asked if she is aware of the fact that by not replying to the questions asked, she places the investigation, which seeks to find out what happened to her daughter, at risk, she replied yes, if that is what the investigation thinks.”

Regarding covering for the McCanns - read the rogatory interviews of the Tapas Seven, which can be found here: (Russell O’Brien) (Matthew Oldfield) (Rachel Oldfield) (David Payne) (Fiona Payne) (Jane Tanner) (Diane Webster)

David Payne’s account of the last time he saw Madeleine should be compared to Kate McCann’s version of the same event:

“David was at the apartment for around 30 seconds, he didn’t even actually enter the flat, he remained at the balcony door. According to her he then left for the tennis courts where Gerry was. The time was around 6:30-6:40 p.m.”

Then consider why none of these friends of the McCanns were willing to return to Portugal to help the Portuguese Policia Judiciaria with a reconstruction of the events of the night in question. You can find their emailed excuses to the British police at the same site. (

Consider also the findings of the two dogs, Eddie and Keela - one specialises in finding ‘cadaver odour’ and the other blood - and the pair have excellent track records; both found what they were looking for, solely in the apartment (and hired car) used by the McCanns - nowhere else.

As for the way the case was reported in the British media, well there are remarkable similarities there too. Portugal was depicted (like Italy) as a backward third world country; the chief investigator, Goncalo Amaral, was vilified unmercilessly, as was Mignini. Many facts were not reported, or soon forgotten, by the British media.

There is too much more to include in a short comment, but if The Machine had said something similar about AK and RS he would rightly have been considered a troll (which, of course, I don’t believe him to be) or someone who hadn’t done his homework. To avoid such entanglements Wittgentstein had an appropriate thought:

“Whereof one cannot speak, one must remain silent.”

Finally, the McCanns engaged (among several other lawyers) the notorious firm of Carter Ruck who are able to control what can and can’t be said in the media (and who tried to muzzle Parliament over the Trafigura affair), unless you have very deep pockets - hence, presumably, Peter Quennell’s comment:

“Comments closed here for the moment if okay with everyone. We have to be careful about posting unsubstantiated claims as fact which is something we have always tried to stand for.”

Peter Quennell also wrote:

“The Rome equivalent of the FBI which handled most of the investigation of Meredith’s case is highly sophisticated by comparison with the small Portuguese equivalent, ...”

This may well be true as regards the Italian and Portuguese forensic services, but the much of the forensic work in the Madeleine’s case was carried out by a British company, FSS (now defunct, I believe) - so is totally irrelevant.

Posted by Daoud on 04/27/12 at 08:49 AM | #
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

Where next:

Click here to return to The Top Of The Front Page

Or to next entry Italian Court Rules American Museum Must Return An Illegally Exported Statue

Or to previous entry Italy Handles Wrongful Death of An American With Usual Efficiency And Real Respect For The Victim