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2007: October key Events - Days (151-181) *

MCCANN FILES HOME BACK TO GERRY MCCANNS BLOGS HOME PAGE PHOTOGRAPHS
NEWS REPORTS INDEX MCCANN PJ FILES NEWS MAY 2007
 
Paulo Rebelo takes charge of the investigation. Kate and Gerry give their first interview since being made offical suspects. The McCanns' hire their own investigation team.

All the key events from October, with video and pictures
July 2007 (Days 59-89)
August 2007 (Days 90-120)
September 2007 (Days 121-150)
October 2007 (Days 151-181)
November 2007 (Days 182-211)
December 2007 (Days 212-242)
January 2008 (Days 243-273)
February 2008 (Days 274-302)
March 2008 (Days 303-333)
April 2008 (Days 334-363)
May 2008 (Days 364-394)
June 2008 (Days 395-424)
July 2008 (Days 425-455)
August 2008 (Days 456-486)
September 2008 (Days 487-516) 
October 2008 (Days 517-547)
November 2008 (Days 548-Date)

Date
Day
Event
Monday 01 October 2007
151
The head of Portugal's police federation, Carlos Anjos, mocks Gerry's claims that an abductor could have been hiding in the McCanns' apartment, when Gerry went to check on the children on the night of May 3rd.
 
Mr Anjos said it was 'the latest ridiculous episode' in a 'strategy' designed to hinder the police investigation.
 
 
It is claimed that Portuguese police believe Madeleine McCann died after falling down a flight of steps and that her parents panicked, hiding her body because they feared being blamed. It was alleged that the four-year-old smashed the back of her head on a ceramic flagstone at her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz. Fearing they would be charged with manslaughter, Kate and Gerry McCann then got rid of the body, possibly with the help of their friends, it was alleged. The latest theory against the couple was dismissed as "ludicrous and unsubstantiated" by their spokesman.
 
Today, the McCanns spent a quiet day in their home town of Rothley in Leicestershire, marking 150 days since their daughter disappeared. They are adamant that she was abducted but police in Portugal were described as "100 per cent" certain that the little girl died in the family's apartment in the Algarve.

A senior detective told Portuguese newspaper 24 Horas: "The only thing to investigate is how the body disappeared." The newspaper claims Madeleine fell down steps at the back of the apartment. Photographs taken at the time show a children's safety barrier above the steps.

The new theory emerged after a report from Britain said specialist sniffer dogs had detected the "smell of death" on the steps, it was claimed. In the past, Mr and Mrs McCann, both 39, have been accused of hiding their daughter's body because she had been sedated.

But a source close to the couple hit back at the allegations. "Where is the proof that this happened? Madeleine was put to bed at 7pm and there was a witness. When is Madeleine supposed to have fallen? If the police are 100 per cent certain that Madeleine fell down some steps, that means they must be able to prove she died in that way. It's just not possible without a body." The couple's spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, added: "It is just ludicrous. All of these reports are unsourced and unsubstantiated."

A source close to the McCanns said police were investigating claims that a disgruntled ex-employee from the Ocean Club, where the family was staying, may have been involved in Madeleine's abduction. A tip-off claiming that a former Ocean Club employee was involved in Madeleine's disappearance was sent to the Prince of Wales's official website, and passed to police.

It alleged that a maid who used to work at the Mark Warner resort kidnapped Madeleine in revenge for being fired. Police have discovered the woman identified does exist and that the tip-off came from an email address registered in the Iberian peninsula.

Tuesday 02 October 2007
152
Chief Inspector Goncalo Amaral is removed from the case by Alipio Ribeiro after criticising British police in what he thought was an 'off the record' comment. Amaral accused UK detectives of pandering to Kate and Gerry McCann and said they were only interested in leads fed to them by the couple.
 
Although there was no official reason given for the decision to remove Amaral from the case, it came hard on the heels of a public reprimand for Amaral by Portugal's justice minister.
 
Reacting to Amaral's outburst, Alberto Costa said: "We have to concentrate on the work, not on making comments."
 
Amaral was embarrassed at the weekend by reports that he enjoyed two and three-hour boozy lunches while he was supposedly working to find Madeleine.
 
Madeleine was drugged by her abductor, says her grandmother Daily Mail
 
Last updated at 18:27pm on 2nd October 2007
 
The grandmother of missing Madeleine McCann believes the four-year-old was drugged by her abductor before being carrried from the apartment. Eileen McCann claims otherwise the child would have shouted and screamed for her parents if she was being carried off by a stranger.
 
Speaking from her Scottish home, the 69-year-old said the family had gone through hell since Madeleine went missing 151 days ago. "I really believe [whoever took her] gave her a drug," she said. "There is no way they carried her out of there without her wakening. If she was taken when she was sleeping by somebody she did not know she would have screamed the place down."
 
"My son and Kate would never even slap their child, never mind do anything to harm her," she said. "They are running away from nobody because they are innocent."
 
Mrs McCann went on to rubbish the police investigation, including DNA evidence reportedly found in Kate and Gerry's hire car which has become the centre of the investigation. "The thing is that little Amelie is wearing Madeleine's sandals and she is in and out of the car," she said. Cuddly toys are in it. Madeleine's toys are in it. Madeleine's tops are in it that Amelie is wearing. It's nonsense."
 
It has also emerged that Mr and Mrs McCann are conducting a secret investigation which they hope will clear them by Christmas. Their legal team has carried out its own interviews with every witness they can find to the events of May 3. They will use the resulting evidence to demolish any accusations that the McCanns were involved in their four-yearold daughter's disappearance.
 
The lawyers will give their defence dossier directly to prosecutor Luis Bilro Verao. They hope that Mr Verao will compare their evidence alongside that gathered by the Algarve police, and throw out the case. A friend of the McCanns revealed that the couple are convinced they will soon be in the clear.
 
The friend said: "(The lawyers) will make a direct approach to the Portuguese prosecutor's office. They will say, 'This is what we have got. We advise you not to go any further'."
 
All the witnesses now back in Britain have given new interviews to the McCanns' lawyers. They include all seven of the friends who went on holiday to Praia da Luz with the McCanns.
 
A source close to the legal team said: "The idea of carrying out an independent investigation is that if the Portuguese police claim one piece of evidence points one way, we can immediately use the same evidence to prove a different point."
 
The source added: "We are leaving no stone unturned on this one."
 
Wednesday 03 October 2007
153
Kate and Gerry visit the offices of the Leicester Mercury to collect a cheque for Madeleine's Fund and give their first interview since returning from Portugal. They thanked the paper for their fund-raising campaign which raised 57,000 by selling yellow-and-green Madeleine wristbands.
 
 
Following the removal of Goncalo Amaral from the case, Clarence Mitchell says the Portuguese police must 'refocus' their efforts on finding Madeleine.
 
Mr Mitchell said: "Kate and Gerry have always said they were more than happy to cooperate with the Portuguese authorities whoever that might be. So in other words, whoever takes over from Mr Amaral as head of the investigation, they will continue that cooperation and do anything that is required - including going back to Portugal for more interviews if necessary."
 
Mr Mitchell strongly denied the McCanns were identifying lines of inquiry for Leicestershire Police, saying it was an "absolutely ridiculous suggestion".
 
It emerges at night that Amaral, 48, was sacked by Mr Ribeiro in a fax to his office. The curt message said: "Transferred to Faro for convenience of the service."

Justice minister Alberto Costa backs Amaral's removal. He said: "It is an act of competence of the PJ national director of which I approve."
 
A successor is not expected to be appointed this week.
 
Thursday 04 October 2007
154
It emerges that a second senior detective working on the case wants to leave the investigation.
 
Chief Inspector Tavares Almeida, 48, who interrogated Kate McCann, is said to have put in a request with his superiors for an extended leave of absence. Mr Almeida, who was Mr Amaral's deputy, is head of the unit within the Judicial Police in Portimao that has been investigating Madeleine's disappearance.
 
Mt Almeida refused to confirm or deny the report, telling newspapers: "I don't speak to journalists."
 

Friday 05 October 2007
155
Gerry cycling 05/10/07
Gerry cycling 05/10/07

Saturday 06 October 2007
156
Newspapers report that the police force investigating Madeleine McCann's disappearance is to be reduced from six to three. However, that is partly due to the fact that each officer must take 15 days holiday before December plus lieu days.
 
Sunday 07 October 2007
157
Desperate for something to write, newspapers dig up the story of Danie Krugel, a South African ex-policeman. Dubbed 'The Locator' Krugel claims to be able to trace missing people by means of his 'special device' which tracks the persons DNA. Kate and Gerry are believed to have called in Krugel sometime in July. Spokesman Clarence Mitchell would not comment on 'anything that goes to the very heart of the investigation'.
 
Monday 08 October 2007
158
Paulo Rebelo, a senior criminal investigation coordinator in national police headquarters in Lisbon, is appointed as the new head detective in the Madeleine investigation.
 
 
Newspapers report that British scientists have reportedly discovered new DNA evidence possibly linking Kate and Gerry McCann to Madeleine's disappearance.
 
Reorts suggest the results, from the Forensic Science Service Laboratory in Birmingham support previous forensics that were sent to Portugal by British scientists and resulted in the McCanns being named as official suspects.
 
The new results are said to have come from analysis of further material taken from the McCanns' apartment in Praia da Luz, their hire car and other parts of the Mark Warner holiday complex.
 
Tuesday 09 October 2007
159
Portugese newspaper 24 Horas quotes 'police sources' as stating that they have 'significant evidence' that seven of the eight children had been in the McCanns' apartment when Madeleine disappeared. Reports suggest they did not have an explanation for where the eighth child was. The newspaper also claims that Madeleine, Amelie and Sean were all sedated. The McCanns describe the reports as 'utter rubbish'.
 
It is revealed that Kate and Gerry have hired their own forensic team.
 
Kate McCann 09/10/07
Wednesday 10 October 2007
160
Alipio Ribeiro, the National Director of the Judicial Police in Portugal, makes a statement in which he says all lines of investigation remain open, not only Madeleine's death. He criticises reports that have appeared in the press as being pure speculation and, in some cases, misinformation.
 
The Times newspaper reports that holidaymakers who were staying at the resort in Praia da Luz, when Madeleine disappeared, have been asked to provide DNA samples and fingerprints.
 
 
Thursday 11 October 2007
161
Gerry reacts angrily to reports in the Portugese 24 Horas newspaper, which suggest that he is not Madeleine's biological father. The paper claims to have tracked the real father to Birmingham.
 
Gerry was forced to reveal intimate details of how his daughter was conceived with a sperm sample in a fertility clinic. Furious Gerry recounted how his sample was collected and mixed with an egg from GP wife Kate after reports in Portugal claimed he was not Maddie’s dad – and that she was created with donor sperm.

Portuguese paper 24 Horas reported that Madeleine’s DNA was vastly different from that of Gerry and her two-year-old twin siblings Sean and Amelie and claimed police had visited a sperm bank in England and tracked down the missing girl’s “real” father to rule him out of any involvement in her disappearance.

It claimed this was "very relevant" because body fluids with an 88% match to Madeleine’s were found in a car the McCanns hired 24 days after she vanished from their apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, on May 3. The McCanns say the DNA in the car could have come from the twins – but the newspaper’s claims that Madeleine had a different father would, if true, make that impossible.
 
A close family pal said the McCanns had reacted "with horror’" to the claims. "The sperm donor could not have been eliminated because the only donor was Gerry," he said. "He damn well knows because of the IVF process he went through that he is 100% the father. He was in the clinic. He did the business. The police don’t even know which clinic they used, so how can they have tracked it down?"
 
Gerry’s mum Eileen, 67, called the claims "ridiculous", adding that Madeleine, who disappeared two days before her fourth birthday, had several "McCann features’".

24 Horas editor Luis Fontes said his story was confirmed by Portuguese and British police insiders. "It’s true," he said. "Our sources are rock solid. If they think they can sue us, bring it on."
 
Clarence Mitchell says: "Due to further unwarranted, unsubstantiated and totally inaccurate speculation in the Portuguese press today, Gerry and Kate McCann and their lawyers have authorised me to issue the following statement.
 
"For the record, Gerry is the biological father of his daughter Madeleine. A newspaper report in the 24 Horas newspaper suggesting otherwise is nothing short of lies. It is indeed an absolute fabrication."
 
Friday 12 October 2007
162
24 Horas publish the 10 questions they sent to Clarence Mitchell to clarify whether Gerry was Madeleine's biological father. They claim only one of the ten questions was answered. (See section on Gerry McCann for the questions)
Saturday 13 October 2007
163
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Sunday 14 October 2007
164
It is reported that Kate told the police she knew straight away that Madeleine had been abducted because the bedclothes were still raised above the mattress, as if they were still lying over Madeleine's body.
 
Supporters of the McCanns say this meant that she must have been carefully removed from the bed while asleep and taken, rather than just getting up and wandering off, which would have ruffled the bedclothes. They say someone had clearly been in and carefully lifted her out.
 
Monday 15 October 2007
165
Police say Maddie was not snatched by a paedophile after smashing a sick sex ring and finding no photos of her.
 
Police to dig into Kate and Gerry McCann's past Mail on Sunday
 
By VANESSA ALLEN
Last updated at 06:45 15 October 2007
 
British detectives have been asked to investigate the backgrounds of Kate and Gerry McCann.
 
Police in Strathclyde are to dig into the couple's university days 20 years ago and contact former friends and colleagues from their time in Scotland, where they first met.
 
Detectives in Portugal hope the probe might uncover something in the McCanns' past which could shed light on the case, the Sunday Mirror reported.
 
The request - made via Europol - was part of the root-and-branch review of the case ordered by its new head, Paulo Rebelo, and the first interviews could be carried out next week.
 
Strathclyde police refused to comment but a source told the newspaper: 'It's a back-to-basics check. We've been asked to trawl the backgrounds of the McCanns to build up a full picture of their lives right back to university.
 
'It is a full check on their lives to see exactly what type of people they are.'
 
Mrs McCann was nicknamed 'Hot Lips Healy' during her student days at Dundee University, according to her year book.
 
Kate Healy, as she was then, was one of the most popular students in the medical department, where classmates said the Liverpudlian loved parties and trips to the pub, but still passed all her exams with ease.
 
Her year book entry read: 'Renowned for frequently indulging in alcoholic binges and "dance till you drop" nocturnal activities, she immediately led the rest of her fellow colleagues astray.
 
'Hot Lips Healy maintained a consistent Friday night appearance in the Union throughout the whole of first year.'
 
Mr McCann, the son of an Irish-born joiner, studied at Glasgow University and moved out of his parents' tenement flat in Govanhill to share a flat with five friends.
 
The couple met in Glasgow's Western Infirmary in 1992 after finishing their medical degrees, but did not begin dating until 1996. They married in Liverpool in 1998.
Tuesday 16 October 2007
166
Gerry writes in his blog that he is very encouraged by the news that new Chief Inspector Paulo Rebelo and his officers will be reviewing all material in the investigation.
 
Kate McCann says: 'If I weighed another two stone, had a bigger bosom and looked more maternal, people would be more sympathetic'
 
Wednesday 17 October 2007
167
Clarence Mitchell speaks at Coventry University. His topic: 'Madeleine McCann : The Perfect PR Campaign'.
 
Thursday 18 October 2007
168
It is revealed that Gerry McCann asked a friend to drop in and check on Kate and the children while he played tennis on the day daughter Madeleine went missing.

The Daily Mail revealed today that Gerry McCann made the request of his friend David Payne at shortly before 6.30 while playing at the Mark Warner Ocean Club resort in Praia da Luz, southern Portugal where the family were holidaying.

The source told the Mail, "David Payne saw Madeleine at around 6.30pm. He popped in because Gerry wanted to make sure Kate was OK. Gerry was playing tennis and David said he was going past. I expect it was said (by Gerry) as: 'If you are heading back that way, stick your head in and see if Kate is all right', added the source.

However it is believed Portuguese authorities have taken the conversation as suspicious wondering if Gerry had concerns over Kate's state of mind on the day. Both the McCanns have been named as suspects in the case though have yet to face charges.

David Payne is bound by Portuguese secrecy laws and cannot comment on the case however he said today, "Kate is a fantastic mum. She can cope. She is a very able person."

Channel 4 Dispatches broadcast their documentary 'Searching For Madeleine' in which the idea that an abductor broke into the apartment through the shutter is dismissed as 'almost impossible'.

Friday 19 October 2007
169
Tormented Kate McCann told last night how she is visited in the night by the spirit of her missing daughter Madeleine. The anguished GP says she is regularly woken up by visions of the four-year-old in her bedroom. Kate, 39, revealed the visions to her mum, Susan Healy, who was worried about her daughter’s lack of sleep

Susan had assumed Kate and husband Gerry were being kept awake by her two-year old twins, Sean and Amelie. She was stunned when Kate revealed it was missing Madeleine who was haunting her.

Susan, said: "She told me she has difficulty sleeping and wakes during the night. I asked: 'Do the twins come and wake you up?'

Kate said: "No, it's Madeleine. She comes in.'"

Saturday 20 October 2007
170
Kate, Gerry and the twins spend the weekend in Liverpool visiting friends and Kate's family.
 
Sunday 21 October 2007
171
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Monday 22 October 2007
172
Reports suggest that the Portugese investigators wish to further question the members of the Tapas group who were dining with Kate and Gerry on May 3rd.
 
 
Gerry welcomes the news that Alipio Ribeiro intends to re-interview members of the Tapas group as he believes this will hasten their elimination from the investigation.
 
Susan Healy, Kate's mother reveals that Kate feels 'persecuted' by people because she does not look maternal enough.
 
Mrs Healy told the Liverpool Echo: "She said last night, 'If I weighed another two stone, had a bigger bosom and looked more maternal, people would be more sympathetic'. I think it's terrible that she's having to think like that. She does feel persecuted - not by the general public, who have been extremely supportive, but by some sections of the media, and I just feel it's important I let people know she is not this person who is in control all the time."
 
Insisting her daughter had done nothing wrong, Mrs Healy described her as "one of the most maternal people I know" and said her life revolved around her children." Although she acknowledges that Kate and Gerry made a 'terrible mistake' leaving their children alone.
 
Tuesday 23 October 2007
173
Spanish TV air an interview with Susan Healy, Kate's mother, who reveals that Gerry's first words to her on the telephone, following Madeleine's disappearance, were 'There's been a disaster, It's a disaster'.
 
Later, speaking to Kate, she reveals her daughter's first words were 'She's gone, mum. She's gone'.
 
Wednesday 24 October 2007
174
Kate allegedly 'breaks down' in their first TV interview since being made official suspects, 'arguidos', with Spanish TV. Reportedly, the filming had to be stopped 4 times to allow her to recover, although no footage of this has been made available to view. At one point she brushes her hand across her cheek but there does not appear to be any tear there.
 
 
 
 
At the end of the interview, when filming had stopped, Gerry turns to Kate and mutters something. This has been the source of much debate and has been misquoted as 'Don't say anything to whoever is calling' but it was clearly not that. Kate does not even have a mobile in her hand. He says 'Do you want to say anything to whoever's got her' Perhaps belatedly trying to prompt Kate, who had forgotten to make a previously rehearsed address to Madeleine's alleged abductor.
 
 
A waiter at the Ocean Club complex, Jose Batista, alleges that Gerry McCann was playing tennis, with an older English couple, just days after Madeleine had disappeared.
 
 
Unsubstantiated detective 'sources' claim that traces of Madeleine's DNA were found in the house Robert Murat share's with his mother.
 
 
The McCanns launch a new 24 hour hotline manned by private detectives.

Kate and Gerry during the Spanish TV interview

Thursday 25 October 2007
175
The McCanns release an artists impression of the person it is alleged Jane Tanner saw on the night Madeleine disappeared. The man has no face and is carrying what appears to be a lifeless body.
 
Clarence Mitchell reveals that the McCanns have reversed their original story, recounted in the immediate hours after Madeleine's disappearance, that an abductor broke in through the shuttered window. They now suggest that the window was open as a 'means of escape'.
 
He said: "I'm not going into the detail, but I can say that Kate and Gerry are firmly of the view that somebody got into the apartment and took Madeleine out the window as their means of escape, and to do that they did not necessarily have to tamper with anything. They got out of the window fairly easily."  

Artist's impression of the 'abductor'

Friday 26 October 2007
176
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Saturday 27 October 2007
177
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Sunday 28 October 2007
178
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Monday 29 October 2007
179
New Chief Inspector of the investigation, Paulo Rebelo, spends 3 hours at the apartment from which Madeleine went missing, testing the windows and running through various scenarios.

Metodo 3, the Spanish 'detective' agency employed by the McCanns, say they are convinced Madeleine is being held in Morocco.
Tuesday 30 October 2007
180
News breaks that Madeleine's Fund has been used to make two mortgage payments on the McCann's family home in Rothley, Leicestershire.
 
 
 
Wednesday 31 October 2007
181
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