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this site is for information and a record of Gerry McCann's Blog
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Goncalo Amaral was sentenced to a year and a half in prison, suspended, for misrepresentation of evidence in the case
of aggressions against Leonor Cipriano.
The ruling, read this afternoon, also ordered the acquittal of Goncalo Amaral on the crime of omission of denunciation.
All defendants who were accused of the crime of torture - Paulo Pereira Cristovao, Leonel Marques and Paulo Marques Bom
- were acquitted.
The inspector Antonio Cardoso, accused of the crime of forgery of a document, was sentenced to two years and three months,
also a suspended penalty.
The ruling in the case of alleged attacks on Leonor Cipriano was read this afternoon in the Court of Faro.
It was taken as proven that Leonor Cipriano was beaten by elements of the Judicial police who could not be identified,
and she didn't fall on the stairs, as was suggested. However, the court failed to ascertain the perpetrators of the aggressions.
The judges pointed out the importance of Teresa Magalhaes' deposition, from the Institute of Forensic medicine, who clarified
the origin of Leonor Cipriano's lesions. On the negative side, they highlighted the lack of credibility of the victim's testimony
due to the constant change of versions that prevented them ascertaining who was responsible for the aggressions.
The case dates back to 2004
The process of alleged aggressions against Leonor Cipriano by inspectors of the PJ is related to the "Joana case, which
dates back to September 12, 2004, the day when the eight-year-old girl disappeared from the village of Figueira, Portimao,
The accusations of the prosecutor against five ex-inspectors and inspectors of the Judicial police emerged following
interrogation of the PJ in Faro in 2004, when Leonor had appeared with lesions on her face and body in Odemira prison, where
she was in custody.
Eight months after the date the trial commenced - on 27 October 2008 - it would be known, on the 14th session of the
trial, if the five ex-inspectors and inspectors of the Polícia Judiciária (PJ) were to be acquitted or convicted by a court
Joana's mother, Leonor Cipriano, and uncle, Joao Cipriano (siblings) were sentenced by the Supreme Court to 16 years
in prison each, for crimes of murder and concealment of the child's corpse.
For four days, the lawyer for Leonor Cipriano, Aragao Correia, requested the opening of a new investigation in the "Joana
case" and the acquittal of the girl's mother, after Joao Cipriano confessed in writing that he had tried to sell her.
Goncalo Amaral: "I was expecting to be sentenced", 22 May 2009
Goncalo Amaral: "I was expecting to be sentenced"tvi24
Leonor Cipriano: ex-Inspector Goncalo Amaral tells tvi24 that there was "much political pressure" regarding this case
Thanks to Ines for translation
The PJ ex-inspector, Goncalo Amaral, was not surprised at the revelation and was expecting to be sentenced in the case
of aggressions committed against Leonor Cipriano, the mother of missing (from the Algarve since 2004) minor Joana.
The former PJ Portimao coordinator told tv124: "I was not surprised; I was expecting to be sentenced. There has been
much political pressure regarding this case."
Questioned if he considered himself as a scapegoat in this case, the ex-coordinator of the Maddie investigation responded:
"Throughout my life I have been a scapegoat for many things... I am not sure if I am for this as well."
Regardless, Goncalo Amaral believes in justice: "Our belief in justice does not stop here." He added that he will appeal
to a higher tribunal.
This afternoon, Goncalo Amaral received a one and a half year custodial sentence for false testimony (suspended sentence
for the entire jail term). He was absolved regarding the crime of omission of denunciation.
Madeleine Cop Gets Suspended Sentence, 22 May 2009
The collective of judges considered that Leonor Cipriano was tortured, even though it could not be proved by whom. In
the verdict read today, two PJ inspectors were accused, Antonio Nunes Cardoso for document forgery and Goncalo Amaral for
simple false testimony, he was acquitted in relation to the crime of omission of denunciation of the aggressions suffered
by Leonor Cipriano.
The other three arguidos [defendants], Leonel Morgado Marques, Paulo Pereira Cristovao and Paulo Marques Bom were absolved
of the crime of torture.
It wasn't proved who ordered the aggressions to Leonor Cipriano in 2004.
Goncalo Amaral received a one year and six months suspended sentence; and Antonio Nunes Cardoso a two years and six months
sentence, also suspended.
Goncalo Amaral was convicted for simple false statement, since the version of the alleged fall on the stairs of Leonor
Cipriano wasn't proved. Thus, the court considered that Amaral had lied, in order to cover the actions of his unknown colleagues.
The court concluded that Antonio Nunes Cardoso falsified a document, which reported the fall on the stairs of Leonor
Cipriano. The sentence for Cardoso was aggravated, given his position as a police officer, "of whom is the requirement to
The lawyers for Leonor Cipriano, Marcos Aragao Correia and the assistant representing the Bar Rodrigo Santiago will appeal
as well as Antonio Cabrita, Goncalo Amaral's lawyer.
Leonor confessed the crime on the 13th of October and alleged being beaten a day later.
Leonor Cipriano, confessed all of the facts related to her daughter's murder to the PJ on the 13th of October 2004, in
the presence of her lawyer, who at the time was Célia Costa. Leonor's brother, Joao Cipriano, had previously confessed the
crimes a few days before, on the 8 of October.
Leonor Cipriano and her brother Joao were condemned by the Portimao Court to sentences of 20 and 19 years, respectively,
for the crimes of qualified homicide and for hiding the cadaver. The appeals to the Supreme Court ended up reducing the sentences
to 16 years each. The Cadaver of Joana, 8-years-old, was never found.
Marinho Pinto, the actual head of the bar [Ordem dos Advogados] wrote the Expresso newspaper article which denounced
the aggressions suffered by Leonor Cipriano, using photographs which were under the secrecy of justice at the time.
Marinho Pinto was requested in an appeal by the defence as a witness, however his testimony was prevented since the OA
decided for the first time in Portuguese legal history to become an assistant against the 5 PJ inspectors. In the same appeal,
the 'direct contact' between Leonor Cipriano's lawyer, Marcos Aragao Correia and Marinho Pintoit was also referred.
Goncalo Amaral interview outside the court in Faro, 22 May 2009
Goncalo Amaral interview outside the court in Faro TVI
Goncalo Amaral: Why? Because there is a lot of political pressure on the
case, there are various matters which are surrounding this, so this couldn't have ended with everyone being absolved. The
court was sovereign...
Marisa Rodrigues: Do you believe that there were scapegoats? You could have
been a scapegoat, is that it?
Goncalo Amaral: During my life as a coordinator of the Police I was a scapegoat
for various things, and I don't know if for this one I'm one as well.
On the Side - Today's Law Quotes
'Target was hit, Goncalo Amaral was convicted'... Marcos Aragao Correia, Leonor Cipriano's Lawyer
'I'm happy, I'm Portuguese, I'm a patriot' ... Rodrigo Santiago, the assistant lawyer for the accusation representing
'This is a big lesson for the Judiciary Police'... Pragal Colaco, lawyer for the defence of four PJ inspectors
'I still don't understand how there is a false statement' ... Antonio Cabrita, Goncalo Amaral's lawyer
'I was surprised, because, in fact it was obvious, that there was torture'... Marinho Pinto, current head of the Portuguese
Without identified authors, the collective of judges and jury at the Court of Faro decided yesterday to acquit the three
Polícia Judiciária inspectors that stood accused of torture against Leonor Cipriano, who was condemned to 16 years over the
homicide of her daughter Joana. The other two arguidos, including the former coordinator of the Joana and Maddie cases, Goncalo
Amaral, were condemned to suspended sentences over forgery of documents and false statements.
Despite concluding that the plaintiff "suffered aggressions" while under the custody of the PJ, the court understood
that it was not proved "how said lesions were inflicted" and "who inflicted them", acquitting Pereira Cristovao, Marques Bom
and Leonel Marques. Concerning the theory of the fall from the stairs, the court concluded that "the lesions were not compatible
with the explanation". The conviction was based on the deposition of a technician from the Forensics Medicine Institute, which
the inspectors' defence disputes.
"The two arguidos were condemned only because the antagonising deposition by professor Teresa Magalhaes was considered
to be credible and everything else was forgotten," lawyer Pragal Colaco, who will appeal the condemnation of Antonio Cardoso,
Antonio Cabrita, Goncalo Amaral's lawyer, also ponders an appeal over the condemnation of his client.
Leonor has no credibility
The jurors and the collective of judges at the Court of Faro considered that Leonor
Cipriano's deposition had "no credibility". According to judge Henrique Pavao, "she changed her version several times" and
"lightly" accused persons of aggressing her, based on a list of names that she carried into the court room. "She lied about
the identification of the aggressors and she lied about other crucial aspects," the judge mentioned.
Concerning the photographs that were taken of Leonor, which were included in the process, the collective considered that
they are "of weak quality" and that therefore, "it was not possible to conclude safely about what really happened".
Suspended – The Court of Faro condemned
Goncalo Amaral and Antonio Cardodo to suspended sentences of one year and three months and two years and three months, respectively,
over false statement and document forgery.
Attack – Pragal Colaco, the lawyer to four of the accused inspectors, attacked
the head of the Laywers' Order, Marinho Pinto, saying that he should "be ashamed" over making the Order an assistant in the
Union – The Union of the PJ's Criminal Investigation Workers congratulated
itself over the acquittal of "three colleagues". For Carlos Anjos, the decision "gave reason to the position that was defended
by" the Union.
Goncalo Amaral - The court of Faro's decision explained, 23 May 2009
Goncalo Amaral - The court of Faro's decision explained
The collective of judges at Faro court - made up of 3 judges and 4 jurors - considered that Leonor Cipriano
was tortured; even though it could not be proved by whom.
As a result, the 3 PJ officers accused of aggressions were acquitted.
Goncalo Amaral was found guilty of false testimony because he upheld, under oath - five months after the 'events' - the
version that he had been given by his subordinates, i.e. that Leonor Cipriano had been injured when she tried to commit suicide
by throwing herself over the railing of the stairs inside the PJ building in Faro.
This was considered to be a false testimony because the facts that Dr Amaral testified to, could not be proved.
His defence, according to what we could read in the papers throughout the trial, and to statements that his lawyer made
to the media, outside the court building, was that he could not have given another version of the facts because this was what
the inspectors who witnessed the episode, reported to him.
Goncalo Amaral's condemnation was as atypical as the process, 24 May 2009
The final ruling in the trial of the so-called "Leonor Cipriano case", in which two of the five Polícia Judiciária (PJ)
inspectors and former inspectors were condemned, ended up revealing itself as atypical of the process: the court of Faro
considered that the practice of torture was proved but failed to indicate who the alleged aggressors were.
During all of the court sessions, no witnesses to the alleged torture acts were presented and the final ruling ended
up being based on the reports from forensic experts, which were not founded on a physical examination of Leonor Cipriano,
but rather on photographs that had been published years earlier by Expresso, and whose authenticity is still questioned.
Given the importance that was attributed to the photographs, it is strange that the court didn't consider the doubts
that persist concerning their origin. Doubts that could have been clarified if the defence had been permitted to hear the
former journalist that was behind their publication, who is now the head of the Lawyers' Order – through the cunning
decision of entering the Order as an assistant in the process, Marinho Pinto kept the control over the proceedings in the
Court of Faro, and at the same time escaped questioning.
Reading the final ruling, one can conclude that the court sustained its decision on the photographs, credible or not,
as it couldn't base itself on Leonor Cipriano who throughout the process gave several contradictory statements, thus confirming
the analysis that had been made by Paulo Sargento, who described her as a compulsive liar.
Leonor changed her version about the manner in which she was aggressed, the dates and times, several times, but also
the place where everything took place, and even her aggressors: one day she directly implied former coordinator Goncalo Amaral,
the next day she confessed that she hadn't even seen him on the day of questioning.
Paulo Pereira Cristovao, Leonel Marques and Paulo Marques Bom, who stood accused of torture, were found innocent, while
Antonio Cardoso and Goncalo Amaral were condemned to suspended sentences: two years and three months and one year and six
months in prison, respectively.
The "snowball" effect
Antonio Cardoso's report, which earned him his condemnation, and in which the
inspector merely described in what manner Leonor Cipriano fell on the stairs, was not handed over to the scientific police's
lab, where an expert could have found a false signature, a changed date or even the replacement of excerpts of the text: presiding
judge Henrique Pavao, in the name of the collective, upon considering that torture was proved, automatically removed the value
of Cardoso's report – if there was torture, then the report has to be false.
It is within this context that former PJ coordinator, Goncalo Amaral, ends up being condemned: saying that torture existed,
is to state that Cardoso lied when he wrote his service report, therefore – no matter whether he tells the truth or
a lie – Amaral had to be condemned. Wasn't that the initial goal?
- Like the French say, "c'était Q. F. D."
Joana Case: Court says that Leonor Cipriano lied, 25 May 2009
The Court of Faro will request the Public Ministry to open a judicial inquiry on Leonor Cipriano over the crime of false
statements in the trial of present and former PJ inspectors within the "Joana case".
In the ruling, that was read out on Friday and which the Lusa Agency accessed today, the collective of judges considered
that the statements that Leonor Cipriano produced during the trial sessions contained "flagrant and relevant contradictions",
and therefore determined that a certificate should be extracted, to which a copy of the tape recordings was added.
In the verdict, it is mentioned that the mother of the child that disappeared on the 12th of September 2004, in the village
of Figueira, in Portimao, "was offered (…) an extensive opportunity to reveal the truth" during the trial sessions at
the Court of Faro, but "essentially seized the opportunity to lie".
"Leonor Cipriano lied about the manner in which she was beaten, about the identification of the persons that beat her,
about the time and the manner how she revealed that she had been beaten, in short, she lied about every essential aspect of
the statements that she gave," the verdict stresses.
Underlining that Leonor Cipriano presented "no plausible reason whatsoever to have done so," the collective of three
judges, presided by Henrique Pavao, considered that Joana's mother revealed "major contradictions" and that she presented
"very different versions for one and the same fact".
The verdict, which will also be sent to the PJ's Department of Discipline and Inspection, where an inquiry is being held
against present inspectors Antonio Cardoso and Paulo Marques Bom, considered the aggressions as proved, although without establishing
the aggressors' identity, and determined the condemnation of two of the five arguidos in the process.
Goncalo Amaral, a former coordinator of the PJ's Criminal Investigation Department in Portimao, who was acquitted of
the crime of omission of denunciation, was condemned to one and a half years over the crime of false deposition, with a suspended
sentence over a similar period.
Inspector Antonio Nunes Cardoso, who is still in service, was condemned to two years and three months over forgery of
document, with a suspended sentence over two years.
Former PJ inspectors Paulo Pereira Cristovao and Leonel Morgado Marques and still inspector Paulo Marques Bom, who all
stood accused of the crimes of torture against Leonor Cipriano, following the questioning at the PJ in Faro, in 2004, were
Leonor Cipriano and her brother, Joao Cipriano, were condemned by the Supreme Court of Justice to 16 years in prison
each, over the crimes of homicide and concealment of Joana's cadaver.
Leonor Cipriano appeals against Goncalo Amaral's sentence, 28 May 2009
Leonor Cipriano appeals against Goncalo Amaral's sentence IOL Diário
Joana's mother requests condemnation and effective prison sentence for the four PJ inspectors that were acquitted of
the crime of torture in May
Leonor Cipriano, the mother of Joana, the little girl that disappeared from Figueira in 2004, has appealed against the
sentence of Goncalo Amaral and three other former PJ inspectors, in the case of aggressions that she allegedly suffered during
questioning in Faro.
The appeal, which was filed this Thursday at the Appeals Court of Évora, requests the condemnation and effective prison
sentence for the arguidos that were acquitted by the Court of Faro, tvi24.pt was told by Leonor Cipriano's lawyer, Marcos
According to the document that was given to tvi24.pt by Aragao Correia, Leonor Cipriano files an appeal because she disagrees
with the sentence that was given on the 22nd of May by the Court of Faro, where inspectors Leonel Marques, Paulo Cristovao
and Paulo Marques Bom were acquitted over the crime of torture.
Joana's mother also disagrees the acquittal of Goncalo Amaral over the crime of omission of denunciation, as well as
the application of only 1 year and 6 months in prison with a suspended sentence over the crime of false deposition.
Justifying these discrepancies, Leonor Cipriano's defence mentions that the ruling of May 22 "suffers from contradictions",
by acquitting the arguidos. This because "the ruling itself considered proved that a fall from the stairs didn't exist [as
the defence alleged] and that the arguido Goncalo de Sousa Amaral knew that truth perfectly well."
Alleged complaint from Goncalo Amaral's wife
Leonor Cipriano's defence further mentions that one of the "extremely important pieces of evidence" against Goncalo Amaral
was refused by the judge three months after the first request. That evidence concerns a complaint that was presented by the
wife of arguido Goncalo Amaral against her own husband.
In the complaint, which was
presented on the 23rd of
December 2007 in the shape
of a letter that was
directed at Guilhermino da
Encarnacao, the PJ's Joint National Director in Faro, Goncalo Amaral's wife asks for help to trace her underage daughter
that was living with her father.
In the letter, which Leonor Cipriano's lawyer sent to tvi24.pt, Alexandra Leal mentions that she found her husband, Goncalo
Amaral, "consuming alcoholic drinks, together with other colleagues". In another excerpt, the wife of the former coordinator
of the PJ's Criminal Investigation Department of Portimao mentions that Goncalo Amaral "ordered me to enter the house, where
he insulted me and threatened me with death".
Contacted by tvi24.pt and
questioned about whether or
not he received said
complaint at the time,
declined to comment.
To tvi24.pt, Aragao Correia, Leonor Cipriano's lawyer, mentions that the letter, to which he had access through a source
at the PJ's Faro Directory, was only "mentioned for the first time five months ago". At that time, according to Aragao Correia,
both Goncalo Amaral and his wife, Alexandra Leal, "denied that any complaint had been presented" and "stated that the letter
was not authentic".
Joana's mother's lawyer stresses that the letter from Goncalo Amaral's wife, and another document from the PJ's Piquete
[official records], which proves that the complaint entered the police, is of "extreme importance". This because it "proves
the violent, criminal and inhuman personality of arguido Goncalo Amaral," the lawyer states.
Leonor Cipriano's defence argues that those two documents were "completely ignored" by the Court and now requests for
them to be known by the Appeals Court in Évora.
Leonor Cipriano and her brother, Joao Cipriano, were condemned by the Supreme Court of Justice to 16 years in prison
over the crimes of homicide and concealment of a cadaver.
Leonor Cipriano's lawyer requests revision of sentence and wants acquittal, 08 June 2009
Leonor Cipriano’s lawyer requests revision of sentence and wants acquittalLusa/SOL
Today, Leonor Cipriano's lawyer has presented the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJ) with an
extraordinary appeal for the revision of the sentence that Joana’s mother was condemned to, due to his consideration
that new facts have been discovered
The request for a revision of the sentence appears after it was proved in court that Leonor was aggressed in the building
of the Polícia Judiciária (PJ) in Faro, although it was not proved who aggressed her or in what manner.
In a press release, Marcos Aragao Correia says that the girl's mother – who was condemned to 16 years in prison
over the co-authorship of Joana's murder – must be "acquitted" because there are new facts and evidence that raise "very
serious doubts" about the condemnation's justice.
As a first "turnaround" in the process, the lawyer points towards Leonor Cipriano's confession, which was made in January,
in which she denies being involved in her daughter's death and points to her brother, Joao Cipriano, as being responsible
for her death, after a failed attempt to sell the little girl.
At the time of the confession, five PJ inspectors and former inspectors stood trial in Faro, involved in a process of
alleged aggressions on Leonor during questioning, a trial during which she gave false testimony, which has already prompted
the opening of an inquiry.
The Court of Faro ended up acquitting the three inspectors that stood accused of torture, but condemned two (Goncalo
Amaral and Antonio Cardoso), who were accused of other crimes, to suspended prison sentences.
According to Aragao Correia, Leonor's condemnation was based on "false confessions" that were obtained under "brutal"
torture, but also on the false accusations that were proffered against her by the brother who until a short while ago incriminated
her as a co-author of the crime.
In order to try to reverse the situation, the lawyer says he bluffed with Joao Cipriano in order to convince him to sign
a confession, that was written down at the Prison of Carregueira, Sintra, in May, in which he stated that he tried to sell
the little girl.
Aragao Correia told Leonor's brother that he had heard that a convict that had been condemned to over 20 years for murder
was going to be transferred to the Prison of Carregueira with the purpose of murdering him.
The order to kill Joao would have come from elements of a criminal network that tried to buy Joana, stresses Aragao Correia,
who assumes that he invented the story in order to force Leonor's brother to confess that he had lied throughout the entire
"Joao Cipriano has no juridical gain from this confession, quite to the contrary," the lawyer stresses, adding that,
apart from homicide, the convict will now have to answer over the crime of human trafficking.
According to Aragao Correia, Leonor Cipriano's condemnation was already "very frail" and "doubtful" from a factual and
juridical point of view, gaps that are stressed by the new evidence and facts.
"We can only conclude that the court merely based itself – unconsciously – on the false indications of the
inquiry, namely on the false confession from Leonor (which was obtained under torture) and above all on the systematic lies
of Joao Cipriano," the lawyer underlines.
The process of alleged aggressions against Leonor Cipriano is linked to the 'Joana case' that dates back to the 12th
of September 2004, the day when the child, aged eight, disappeared from the village of Figueira, Portimao.
Following the questioning that took place at the PJ in Faro, Joana's mother allegedly presented lesions to her face and
body, which prompted the accusations from the Public Ministry against former and present PJ inspectors, three of whom were
indicted over torture to obtain a confession.
Leonor Cipriano and her brother, Joao Cipriano, were condemned by the Supreme Court of Justice to 16 years in prison
each, over the crimes of homicide and concealment of Joana's cadaver.
Leonor Cipriano tries to annul condemnation, 09 June 2009
Leonor Cipriano's lawyer asserts that he "discovered new facts and evidence" that he believes are enough to annul the
condemnation of Joana's mother over homicide and concealment of a cadaver. This is what he requested in the revision appeal
that he filed with the Court of Portimao yesterday.
The new "evidence" is statements from relatives and acquaintances of Leonor, who attest that she was a "good mother",
"incapable of hurting her daughter" and that she "never beat her". Aragao Correia further mentions two alleged confessions
by Leonor and Joao, in which both report an attempt to sell the child to a foreign couple.
Another argument is the decision by the Court of Faro in the process that accused five PJ investigators in the "Joana
case". On the 22nd of May, it was accepted as proved that the woman was aggressed at the PJ in Faro in order to confess where
she had concealed the child's body. Nevertheless, the lawyer insists that Leonor was aggressed in order to confess the homicide.
The appeal will be forwarded to the Supreme Court of Justice.
Amaral wants Leonor's lawyer committed, 15 June 2009
The former coordinator of the PJ, Goncalo Amaral, will request from the Public Ministry of Faro a series of psychiatric
examinations and assessments into the personality of Marcos Aragao Correia, suggesting even that he is committed. In the appendage
to the criminal process for defamation against Leonor Cipriano's lawyer, Goncalo Amaral defends that the accused suffers from
a 'pathological imbalance with traits of social dangerousness.'
With this appendage, Goncalo Amaral, wants to verify the non-imputability of the Madeiran lawyer, who supports Kate and
Gerry McCanns' abduction thesis in the Maddie Case and who assumed the defence of Leonor Cipriano, Joana's mother, in the case
of aggressions which saw five elements of the PJ sat at the defendants bench.
'Marcos Aragao seems, indeed, a permanent danger to himself and to others,' said Amaral in the document to the Public
Ministry(PM). Convinced that the examinations will prove the dangerousness of the lawyer, the former coordinator asks the
PM for preventive measures to be applied. 'Dangerousness, which, if confirmed, may require appropriate and regular psychiatric
monitoring, or ultimately the preventive commitment to a mental hospital.', refers the document.
Among the probatory material presented are news articles with public declarations made by the lawyer. 'Aragao Correia
affirmed that he is a psychic medium, and he assured that he had visions of Maddie and Joana', quoting the weekly newspaper
SOL. Other news articles refer to the conviction [belief] of Aragao regarding the intervention of secret societies, led by
Bush [the former US president], whose objective was to create a climate of insecurity in order to implement the implantation
of electronic chips in children.
The CM has tried, without success, to contact and speak with Aragao Correia.
Marcos Aragao Correia, a Madeira lawyer, came to the Algarve in December 2007
to search for Maddie in a dam. He assumed the patronage of Leonor Cipriano in order to lead the accusations against the
Public Ministry accuses former PJ inspector Goncalo Amaral of torture on Leandro Silva, 01
Public Ministry accuses former PJ inspector Goncalo Amaral of torture on Leandro Silva Público/Lusa
Lisboa, 01 Jul (Lusa) – The Public Ministry has accused former Polícia Judiciária inspector Goncalo Amaral of aggression
on Leandro Silva, the partner of Leonor Cipriano, who was condemned over homicide and concealment of the cadaver of her daughter
Joana Cipriano, in 2004, in the Algarve.
According to documents from the Public Ministry, to which Lusa agency was given access, Goncalo Amaral stands accused
of a crime of torture in co-authorship.
The accusation mentions that on the 13th of October 2004, in the PJ building in Portimao, the former inspector grabbed
Leandro Silva's neck and punched him twice in the abdomen and slapped him twice in the face, while asking him to indicate
where the child (Joana) was.
As a direct consequence of said aggressions, further according to the Public Ministry, Leandro suffered several lesions,
namely a "contusion of the back grid" that prevented him from working for five days.
In May, the court in Faro condemned Goncalo Amaral to one-and-half year of suspended prison sentence, over false testimony
in the case of aggressions against Leonor Cipriano.
It was considered proved that Leonor Cipriano was aggressed at the PJ by non identified Judiciária officers, and did
not fall down the stairs, as had been suggested.
Nevertheless, the court failed to determine who the authors of said aggressions were.
This case dates back to 2004 and is related to the so-called "Joana case", which concerns the disappearance, on the 12th
of September of the same year, of an eight-year-old girl from the village of Figueira, Portimao.
The Public Ministry's accusations against five actual and former Judiciária inspectors appeared after the questionings
at the PJ in Faro in 2004, at a time when Leonor reportedly appeared with lesions to her face and body at the Prison of Odemira,
where she was under preventive custody.
Joana's mother and her uncle Joao Cipriano were condemned by the Supreme Court of Justice to 16 years in prison each,
over the crimes of homicide and concealment of the child's cadaver.
Joana: Public Ministry accuses Goncalo Amaral over crime of torture, 01 July 2009
Joana: Public Ministry accuses Goncalo Amaral over crime of torturetvi24.pt
At stake are alleged aggressions against Leandro Silva, former partner of Leonor Cipriano
The Public Ministry of Faro accuses the former PJ inspector, Goncalo Amaral, over a crime of torture in a case of alleged
aggressions against Leandro Silva, a former partner of the mother of Joana, the little girl from the village of Figueira that
went missing in 2004.
The information is communicated by lawyer Marcos Aragao Correia, who represents Leonor Cipriano in the case of aggressions,
that she was the victim of, by PJ officers.
In the accusation, which that lawyer made available to the media, it can be read that at the time of the facts, the 13th
of October 2004, Goncalo Amaral was the coordinator of the PJ's serious crime and drug trafficking Regional Section in Faro.
On the afternoon of that very same day, two agents, who could not be identified, went to pick up Antonio Leandro Silva
at home and drove him to the PJ in Faro.
There, he was questioned by an inspector to whom he stated that Leonor Cipriano had confessed to him that she had abandoned
Joana's body in a ruin, near Figueira.
When the questioning was over and he was leaving, upon reaching the stairs, two agents, who could not be identified,
grabbed him "each by one arm", preventing him from moving, and "at the same time the arguido came from behind and grabbed
his neck with both hands" and placed himself in front of him.
Immediately after that, Goncalo Amaral, according to the accusation, "punched him several times in the abdomen and slapped
his face while he told him to indicate where Joana was".
The aggressions resulted in a "contusion of the dorsal grid" and 15 days of sick leave, five of which he was incapacitated
The arguido acted in conjunction with the non-identified other inspectors, with the intent of "provoking the aforementioned
lesions and to disturb his capacity for determination", leading him to give different statements concerning the little girl's
According to penal law, the crime of torture is punished with a prison sentence between 1 and 5 years, unless another
legal disposition provides for a heavier sentence.
Marcos Aragao Correia explains to tvi24.pt the time lapse of almost five years between the alleged crime and the accusation,
with the fact that the Public Ministry only came to know about the case in October last year.
"In 2004, Leandro tried to press charges but a PJ agent deceived him, saying that he could only do so when the Joana
process would stop being under judicial secrecy".
When he took over Leonor's defence, the lawyer counselled Leandro not to give up. "It was at that time the he complained
to the PJ. This is a public crime, therefore the right to complain doesn't prescribe within six months," the lawyer sustains.
On the other hand, Goncalo Amaral's lawyer confirms that he received the accusation and finds it strange that Leandro
only filed a complaint four years after the alleged crime. "He never mentioned that, not even at Leonor Cipriano's trial,
and now he decides to press charges," he mentions.
Concerning the contents of the accusation, Antonio Cabrita considers that it "is worth what it is worth", adding that
the Public Ministry preferred to "brush the subject away by accusing, thus forcing the decision on the judge".
Antonio Cabrita has not spoken with his client about this accusation yet, but considers that the opening of the instruction
phase should be requested, and all questions that may shake the Public Ministry's thesis should be prompted.
Leandro wants Goncalo Amaral to pay compensation of 500 thousand euros, 01 July 2009
The Lawyer of the former companion of Leonor Cipriano wants the former PJ inspector Goncalo Amaral to compensate his
client with about 500 thousand euros for allegedly assaulting Leandro Silva.
The Public Ministry accused the former inspector of the Judiciary Police of aggressions to Leandro Silva, who will be
defended in the process by Marcos Aragao Correia, the same lawyer who won the conviction against Goncalo Amaral in the case
of the aggressions to Leonor Cipriano.
According to documents of the Public Ministry that the news agency Lusa had access, Goncalo Amaral is accused of torture
as a co-author, of a crime that has been perpetrated on the 13th October 2004, in the premises of the PJ in Faro.
In statements to Lusa, Marcos Aragao Correia said he will request, in court, for compensation from Goncalo Amaral
for the torture inflicted to Leandro, a value that is still being calculated, but might ascend up to 500 thousand euros.
According to the lawyer, the testimonial proof will be reinforced by a report from the Clinical Hospital of the Barlavento
Algarve in Portimao, where Leandro Silva entered hours after the alleged torture.
Leandro Silva entered the emergency room of that hospital with chest pains, on the dawn of 14th October 2004, the same
day that Leonor Cipriano was assaulted on the premises of the PJ in Faro.
According to Aragao Correia, the medical reports will allow the case against Goncalo Amaral to be "once again won".
"I am extremely pleased to see that the Public Ministry worked competently," said Aragao Correia, regretting only that
it was not possible to identify the other perpetrators of the attacks to Leandro Silva.
According to the lawyer, the identification of Goncalo Amaral was easier because he is a media personality and has physical
traits more "easily identifiable".
The accusation states that the former inspector grabbed the neck of Leandro Silva, then struck two punches in the abdomen
area and two slaps on the face while asking him to indicate where the child (Joana) was.
As a direct result of the assault, according to Public Ministry accusation, Leandro suffered several injuries, including
a "contusion of the dorsal grid" which prevented him from working for five days.
It was proved that Leonor Cipriano was attacked in the PJ by unidentified Judiciary elements and that she did not fall
on the stairs, as it was once claimed.
However, the court failed to determine who were the perpetrators of the aggressions.
This case dates back to 2004 and is related to the 'Joana case', which refers to the disappearance, on 12th September
of that year, of an eight year old girl in the village of Figueira, Portimao.
Amaral is accused of torturing Leandro, 02 July 2009
The Public Ministry has accused former the Polícia Judiciária coordinator in Portimao, Goncalo Amaral, over the crime
of torture against Leandro Silva, the partner of Leonor Cipriano – condemned over the homicide and concealment of the
cadaver of her daughter Joana, in 2004.
The process started over a complaint from Leandro, who alleged that he was beaten on the 13th of Octover 2004, at the
PJ in Faro, after giving a testimony within the process of his stepdaughter's disappearance. Leandro says that Amaral was
the author of said aggressions.
According to the Public Ministry's Accusation dispatch, which Correio da Manha has accessed, the arguido, aided by two
members of the PJ that the plaintiff fails to identify, grabbed Leandro's neck with both hands and punched him in the abdomen
several times and slapped him in the face twice, while simultaneously asking for him to indicate where Joana's body was. Amaral
stands accused of the crime of torture, as a co-author. Following this process, Joana's stepfather demands 500 thousand euros
The fundaments for the Public Ministry's accusation, as understood by Antonio Cabrita, Goncalo Amaral's lawyer, are very
"forced". Because, according to the former coordinator's lawyer, the plaintiff "had already given a statement, therefore the
torture acts that he says he was targeted with would have made no sense". After an initial analysis, Antonio Cabrita told
Correio da Manha that he had already seen "archived processes with more abundant evidence".
Lawyer Marcos Aragao Correia, on the other hand, understands that the Public Ministry's accusation against Amaral is
a "second victory" and the third one "is the condemnation".
At the same time, as far as Correio da Manha could establish, Aragao Correia, in a separate process, demands compensation
between 100 and 500 thousand euros over alleged defamation by Goncalo Amaral. At stake are the statements from the former
PJ coordinator in the press, at around mid-June, suggesting the commitment of the lawyer who defends Leonor and Leandro [to
a psychiatric facility].
The Public Ministry's accusation is based on witness statements from Leandro's family members and a medico-legal analysis
of the lesions.
Instruction – Amaral's defence is expected to request the opening of the
Instruction and to contest the Accusation.
The court of Portimao has accepted the appeal for extraordinary revision of the ruling that condemned Leonor Cipriano
to 16 years in prison over the death of her daughter, Joana. At the extreme, the trial may be annulled and carried out
Leonor Cipriano's lawyer, Marcos Aragao Correia, justified the appeal with the existence of new facts that raise "serious
doubts about the justice of the condemnation", as determined by the Penal Process Code.
One of these facts is the alleged confession that was signed, last May, by Leonor's brother – Joao, who has also
been condemned to 16 years in prison over Joana's death – according to which he admitted to having tried to sell the
little girl. Joana disappeared on the 12th of September of 2004, from the village of Figueira. Her body was never found.
Earlier, in January, Leonor Cipriano had also denied her involvement in her daughter's death. According to that version,
it would have been Joao Cipriano who killed Joana, after a failed attempt to sell her.
On the other hand, the lawyer also thinks the fact that it was proved in court that Leonor was aggressed in the Polícia
Judiciária's building in Faro and forced to confess the crime is fundamental for the re-appreciation of the case.
Five PJ inspectors and former inspectors, including Goncalo Amaral, who became known after heading the investigation
into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, were tried, but it was not proved who was responsible for the aggressions against
Leonor Cipriano. Three of them were acquitted from the accusation of torture. Goncalo Amaral was condemned to one and a half
year in prison with a suspended sentence for false deposition.
Meanwhile, the Public Ministry has accused the former PJ coordinator again, but this time over co-authorship of torture.
According to the accusation, the victim was Leandro Silva, Leonor Cipriano's partner. The case has allegedly taken place at
the PJ in Portimao, during questioning, within the Joana case investigation.
After the favourable decision by the court of Portimao, the case now rises to the Supreme Court of Justice, which may
determine the annulment of the first trial and order a new one for the "new facts" to be considered.
Marcos Aragao Correia launches 'support site' for Leonor, Leandro, Kate and Gerry, 17 July
A new website was launched this week, dedicated to the "memory of Joana Isabel Cipriano Guerreiro and Madeleine Beth
McCann". The website, which is owned by Marcos Aragao Correia, the lawyer for Leonor Cipriano and Leandro Silva, traces parallels
between the cases of missing children Joana and Madeleine, stating that both girls "continue to protect" their parents even
though "very far away from here".
Leaving no doubts concerning what Mr Correia believes happened to both Joana and Madeleine – "abused and murdered"
-, said website dedicates less energy and resources to 'supporting' the two couples than to attacking Goncalo Amaral, the
former Polícia Judiciária Coordinator who led the Criminal Investigation Department of Portimao during the investigation into
the Joana case, and during part of the investigation into the Madeleine case.
The opening statement by the website's author, which mentions that "Goncalo Amaral is one of those evil, very evil persons",
is written in an almost childish language, describing Leonor, Leandro, Kate and Gerry as "mommies and daddies, so beloved
by their little girls".
The insistent comparison between the two couples is only briefly interrupted to state that the McCanns, English citizens
with "money, social standing and good connections", were spared Mr Amaral's "Macchiavellian action against the rights of those
children and their parents", contrary to what happened to Joana's family.
An 'open letter' to Goncalo Amaral, authored by Mr Correia, calls the former inspector "shameless", and states that he,
Marcos Aragao Correia, does not "support criminal presidents like the case of your [Amaral's] idol, George W Bush". Furthermore,
Mr Correia proclaims his belief in "Spirituality" and in communication with the dead, stating that the late Pope John Paul
II believed in the same principles.
Mr Correia claims that, contrary to Goncalo Amaral, he wants the missing children to be found, thus "unmasking the hideous,
false Satanist 'need' to massively implant microchips in Human Beings".
The letter finishes with the 'promise' that until Goncalo Amaral "gives peace to the souls of these girls and their parents",
he will be relentlessly persecuted by Mr Correia, "in the name of Peace and Justice".
Other areas of the website reproduce assorted legal documents that have been reported in the Portuguese press, namely
Leonor Cipriano's request for an extraordinary revision of the trial that condemned her over the murder of her daughter Joana,
as well as 4 photos of each of the two "abused and murdered" girls.
In summary, a website that proclaims that "the mommies and daddies of Joana and Madeleine are not alone", and that those
who support Leonor, Leandro, Kate and Gerry are part of "the front line that defends the implantation on Earth of a truly
fair, charitable society, based exclusively on the loving Moral that constitutes the happiness of all fortunate planets" -
it is not in vain that the website's title is "The little girls that came from the stars".
A mixture of esotericism and interplanetary spiritualism with the matching dose of political conspiracy theories, in
what essentially seems to be nothing more than another excuse for the relentless demonization of Goncalo Amaral, to a degree
of almost insanity that drives the website's author to accuse the former PJ coordinator of "opening his mouth that is filled
with rot and bad breath to continue to unload the falseness, the lies, the hatred and the violence that characterise his poor
Time will tell what ties actually bind the case of Joana to the case of Madeleine. Time will tell to what degree the
comparison between Leonor and Leandro, and Kate and Gerry is adequate.
And time will, no doubt, tell who exactly it is that spreads lies, hatred and violence, in a self-admittedly persecutory
exercise under the pretence of seeking Truth and Justice for two little girls who deserved so much better.
The Court of Faro accepts the appeals of Leonor Cipriano, Goncalo Amaral and Nunes
Cardoso, 25 September 2009
The Court of Faro accepts the appeals of Leonor Cipriano, Goncalo
Amaral and Nunes Cardoso Sol/Lusa
The Court of Faro has accepted the appeals of Leonor Cipriano (mother of the missing child in Figueira, Faro),
former PJ inspector Goncalo Amaral and the officer Nunes Cardoso, who were both tried in a case of alleged torture
and other crimes.
In the dispatch to which
the news agency Lusa had access today, the Judge Henrique Pavao, found that the appeals submitted to the Court of Appeal
in Évora were admissible. These appeals were made to the ruling
of the Judicial Court of Faro on 22 May 2009.
Without determining the perpetrators of the alleged aggressions
to the mother of Joana Cipriano, the Court of Faro acquitted of torture the former inspectors of the Judicial Police (PJ)
Paulo Pereira Cristovao and Marques Leonel Morgado, as well as Paulo Marques Bom, who is still in active service,
but condemned Goncalo Amaral and Antonio Nunes Cardoso for other crimes.
of the crime of failing to report the alleged aggression, Goncalo Amaral, the former coordinator of the Criminal
Investigation Department of the PJ of Portimao, was sentenced to a year and a half for the crime of making a false
statement, with the sentence being suspended for the same period.
The conviction of the former PJ Inspector, who
was also involved in investigating the disappearance, in the Algarve, of the British girl Madeleine McCann, also received
an appeal from Leonor Cipriano, with the lawyer Marcos Aragao Correia, considering the sentence insufficient.
For the inspector, Antonio Nunes Cardoso, a sentence of two years and three months, for forgery of a document, was
imposed; also with a suspended sentence for the same period.
Aragao Correia, who presented to the Attorney General's
Office a request for an extraordinary review of the sentence of 16 years' imprisonment imposed to
Leonor Cipriano for the crime of homicide and concealment of the cadaver of her daughter Joana, also called for the
condemnation of Paulo Pereira Cristovao, Leonel Morgado and Paulo Marques Marques Bom.
case goes back to 2004. The eight year old disappeared on 12 September, in the village of Figueira, Portimao, and the
investigation led to charges against Leonor Cipriano and her brother, Joao Cipriano,
both convicted in the first instance Court to 18 years in prison each.
In March 2006, following an appeal, the
Supreme Court of Justice lowered the sentence to 16 years in prison for Leonor Cipriano and Joao Cipriano.
Leonor Cipriano's lawyer confesses to having used "creepy" method, 19 October
Leonor Cipriano's lawyer confesses to having used "creepy" method ionline
Public Ministry in Portimao is surprised about Leonor Cipriano's lawyer's appeal in which he "admits to
having violated basic rules"
by Augusto Freitas de Sousa Published
on 19th October 2009 Thanks to Astro for translation
lawyer confessed that he obtained a statement from his client's brother "based on absolutely
forbidden methods". In it, Joao Cipriano assumed that he had tried to sell his niece Joana.
at least, is the understanding of the Public Ministry in Portimao, after analysing, and refusing, the
request from Marcos Aragao Correia for a revision of the sentence that was applied to Joana's mother, who
has been condemned to 16 years and eight months in prison over qualified homicide and concealment of a cadaver. It is now
up to the process' judge to decide whether or not he accepts the appeal. According to the Public Ministry's decision,
the lawyer – in the document in which he requested the revision of the appeal – presented a confession from
Joao Cipriano "that could be used as the basis for a movie scene". In that written document, Aragao
Correia confesses to having invented a story to fool Joana's uncle: a police source allegedly told him that an inmate
intended to murder Leonor's brother.
A technique that he called
a "bluff" and that allowed him to obtain a statement from Joana's uncle, confessing to having
tried to sell his niece. This confession led the Public Ministry to consider that the lawyer is violating the Lawyers'
Order's statutes, which forbid "contacts with witnesses or other process parties with the purpose of instructing,
influencing, or, by any other means, changing their deposition, thus damaging the discovery of the truth". On the other
hand, it suggests that "the activities that were undertaken by the lawyer" are communicated to the Order.
Among other explanations, the Public Ministry thus refers that the "new evidence" that is presented is not valid
and adds that references to "false confessions that were extorted by the PJ team, which was responsible for the investigation,
under brutal and cruel torture" and the allegation that 'Goncalo Amaral took his degree in criminal investigation
in Guinea-Bissau, or an analogous country, or was fuelled by still unknown interests in the sense that truth would never be
discovered', do not contribute to the serenity, being completely alien to the appeal", concluding that the process
that accused the PJ's agents has not reached a final decision yet.
The president of the Lawyers' Order's
Faro District Counsel, Augusto Cabrita, told i that in this case of eventual violation
of the Order's statutes, it has to be established what Aragao Correia's main address is, and in case it is
in Madeira (there is a main and a secondary address), it will have to be the Lawyers' Order in Madeira that open the process.
And, in that case, this will be yet another process that the lawyer will suffer at that body in Madeira.
Leonor Cipriano. Jurors waiting for 16 thousand euros, 23 October 2009
Leonor Cipriano. Jurors waiting for 16 thousand
Faro Court decision that condemned Goncalo Amaral can only move into appeal after the members of the jury are paid
The eight jurors that
were present during the process of Leonor Cipriano against Polícia Judiciária (PJ) agents have not been paid
by the Court of Faro, which is delaying the appeals that were filed by the lawyers at the Appeals Court. An amount that exceeds
16 thousand euro has not been paid and is standing in the way of a decision from the Appeals Court, given that the appeals
concerning applied sentences and acquittals cannot move from the first instance into the Appeals Court unless the eight members
of the jury are paid. The law does not foresee any legal deadline for appeals to reach the Appeals Court.
appeals are at issue. One from the lawyer that represents former PJ inspector Goncalo Amaral, who did not conform over
the condemnation for false deposition. One from the representative of Leonor Cipriano, who did not agree with the acquittal
of Leonel Marques, Paulo Cristovao and Paulo Marques Bom. And a third appeal that was written by the lawyers
who represent one of the Judiciária agents, Antonio Cardoso, condemned over document forgery.
three appeals are joined by two that were filed prior to the sentence and for which the PJ agents' lawyers are responsible.
One of the requests focuses on the Lawyers' Order being made an assistant in the process – which the agent's
defence considers not to be one of the Orders' purposes and says is at odds with its statutes. And the second one was
filed because the defence considers it had a right to hear a statement from Marinho Pinto, the head of the Lawyers' Order,
which was refused because he was an assistant in the process, The defence called Marinho Pinto (given that as a journalist
he published Leonor Cipriano's photos in the "Expresso" newspaper) as a witness, but due to the fact that he
made himself an assistant, the judge rejected his witness statement.
This is a total of five appeals that wait
for delivery at the Appeals Court in Évora, in order to be evaluated. According to judicial sources that were contacted
by i, the case may drag on for some time, given that the Judicial Court of Faro may not have enough financial resources
for this year, in order to pay over 16 thousand euro that the jury is owed.
According to the Jurors' Statute,
"after the sentence is read in the first instance, compensation is attributed based on every day that the function was
effectively exercised". This means that each one of the jurors – four effectives and four substitutes – receives
one account unit (102 euro) for each day of work. There were approximately 16 court sessions, three meetings of the jurors
with the judges and one interview during selection phase, which sums 20 days of pay for each juror.
In this process,
in which Leonor Cipriano accused the Judiciária inspectors of torture, it was the defence that requested a jury trial,
although the use of jurors is uncommon in Portugal. According to statements made at that time, the defence lawyers wanted
"for the people to judge the police agents".
Less serious cases are tried by a judge.
serious cases are tried by three judges, or exceptionally, by a jury.
Manuel Oliveira 19 November 2009 Thanks to Astro for translation
The Supreme Court of
Justice has summoned the mother and an uncle of Joana Cipriano, who are serving a 16-year prison sentence over the co-authorship
of the death and concealment of the body of the child, that disappeared on the night of the 12th of September 2004, from the
village of Figueira (Portimao), where the family lived, for new hearings.
In a press release that was sent
out yesterday, lawyer Marcos Aragao Correia, representing Leonor Cipriano, the mother of Joana (then aged eight), mentions
that "the 5th section of the Supreme Court of Justice has started probatory diligences in order to establish the details
of new facts that have been recounted by Joana Cipriano's mother and essentially corroborated by the child's own uncle
(Joao Cipriano), by the mother of both, by the child's stepfather, and by other independent witnesses, within the
Extraordinary Sentence Appeal".
According to the version that was presented by Marcos Aragao Correia
to journalists on the 16th of January this year, at the door to the Court of Faro, where the trial of five Polícia
Judiciária inspectors was taking place, three of them standing accused of the moral authorship of torture over Leonor
Cipriano, she said she had been convinced by her brother to accept the sale of Joana to a couple in Spain, that was known
to him. Nonetheless, the deal failed "because the money didn't exist".
DN tried to hear lawyer Marcos
Aragao Correia, yesterday, but he kept himself out of reach.
Leonor Cipriano to be questioned on the 9th of December, 27 November 2009
Leonor Cipriano to be questioned on the 9th of December Destak
27 | 11 | 2009
20.03H Thanks to Astro for translation Leonor Cipriano is going to be questioned on the 9th of December at the Penal Execution Court in Elvas,
following the extraordinary appeal that was filed by the lawyer representing the mother of Joana, the child that disappeared
from the village of Figueira, Portimao, in the Algarve, in 2004.
The hearing of Leonor Cipriano,
who is serving a prison sentence of 16 years and six months for the crimes of homicide and concealment of a cadaver, has been
scheduled for 2 p.m. and was determined by the 5th Section at the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJ).
dispatch, dated November 13, also determined the hearing of Joao Cipriano, Leonor Cipriano's brother who is equally
serving a prison sentence of 16 years and six months at Carregueira Prison, in Sintra, over the practice of the same crimes.
Leonor Cipriano's lawyer, Marcos Aragao Correia, has requested the extraordinary revision of the sentence
that was applied to Joana's mother, presenting a confession by Joao Cipriano for his niece's homicide.
Aragao Correia has further requested the opening of a new inquiry, with the purpose of determining the agents and
causes of Joana's disappearance, on the 12th of September 2004.
Nevertheless, in its answer, which Lusa agency
was able to access, the Public Ministry considered that the extraordinary appeal is not "admissible", considering
that the confession is insufficient "to raise doubts for a revision of the decision".
José Franco Pinheiro has stressed that there are no new facts and has revealed strangeness over the fact that Leonor
Cipriano's lawyer has confessed to obtaining Joao Cipriano's confession "based on absolutely forbidden
On the other hand, former Polícia Judiciária (PJ) inspector Goncalo Amaral
has requested the opening of the instruction of the process in which the Public Ministry has constituted itself as an assistant
of Leandro Silva, Joana's stepfather.
Leandro Silva accuses the former inspector of having aggressed him on
the 13th of October, 2004, at an interrogation in the PJ building of Portimao, for him to confess the location where
Joana's body was deposited.
Supreme Court refuses to review Joana case sentence, 09 January 2010
Lack of new evidence
dictated the decision. Joao Cipriano denies his niece's death and accuses his sister of having sold her daughter.
The Supreme Court of Justice (SCJ) deliberated not to carry out the sentence review that had been requested by Leonor
Cipriano, who serves a 16-year prison sentence, just like her brother, Joao Manuel, over the co-authorship of the death
of her daughter Joana, who went missing on the night of 12/09/2004, in the village of Figueira, near Portimao, where
she lived, and whose body has still not appeared.
The judicial decision is due to neither the existence of any "effectively
new facts", nor "truly relevant" evidence after hearing the two inmates within an extraordinary appeal for
revision of sentence, in December 2009. The child's mother's lawyer, Marcos Aragao Correia, has lamented the
judicial decision and stated to Diário de Notícias, yesterday, that he will gather "new evidence in order
to request a new revision".
The Supreme Court's decision, that is dated 17/12/2009 and signed by judges
Souto Moura, Soares Ramos and Carmona da Mota, which Diário de Notícias had access to, mentions that Joao
Manuel Cipriano, Joana's uncle, who was heard at the Sentence Execution Court, in Lisbon, "denies having written,
denies having signed and does not remember having dictated, to anyone, the contents of a statement that was presented as being
authored by him". Nonetheless, he confirms the visit from his sister's lawyer, Aragao Correia, to the Carregueira
Prison, in Belas (Sintra), where he is held, who asked him to speak about his niece's case, adding that if he did not
say the truth, an inmate from another prison might come to murder him on behalf of the people who wanted to buy Joana.
After recognising, during said meeting with Aragao Correia, that he had murdered his niece after trying to
sell her, a deal that failed "because there was no money", Joao Cipriano ended up presenting a different
version to the Supreme Court's judges. According to the document, he asserted that he "never tried to sell his niece
to anyone, but on the night that she disappeared, his sister told him to come to the door because there was a car near the
church that was going to take her daughter, whom she had sold to a foreign couple". In that statement, Joana's uncle
says that he "saw the car, saw his niece entering the vehicle in which she was driven away. He never saw his niece again."
On the other hand, Leonor Cipriano confesses that it was her brother who talked her into handing her daughter over
to a Spanish couple in exchange for money, but when facing a failed deal, Joao "killed" the child and buried
her body "in the hills of Figueira".
Madeleine McCann: Kidnap ring link, 10 January 2010
A GIRL who vanished just a few miles from where Madeleine McCann disappeared was sold
to child traffickers, a Portuguese court will be told next week.
Joana Cipriano was just eight
when she vanished on September 12, 2004, from the village of Figueira, near Portimao in the Algarve.
Leonor and uncle Joao Cipriano were jailed for 16 years for her murder. But Leonor, who is fighting to overturn her conviction,
will put her case to a Portuguese court this week.
Her sensational allegations raise the possibility that a child
smuggling ring was active in the area and could have also snatched Madeleine from her apartment in Praia da Luz on May 2007.
Leonor's partner Antonio Silva says Joao Cipriano confessed in May last year that he was solely responsible for
Joana's disappearance because he wanted to sell her to raise money to fund his addiction to hard drugs.
Silva's statement, seen by the Sunday Express, says : "The police always refused to investigate the many rumours
in Figueira that criminals would be tempted to buy the girl."
British criminologist and child protection
expert Mark Williams-Thomas called for Joana's case to be reopened and for an investigation to see if it was linked to
Madeleine McCann: Child snatchers link, 11 January 2010
SCHOOLGIRL who vanished close to where Madeleine McCann disappeared was sold to child traffickers, a court will be told this
Joana Cipriano was eight when she went missing from Figueira on Portugal’s Algarve
Her mum Leonor and uncle Joao Cipriano were each jailed for 16 years for her murder.
says she now has evidence her daughter was smuggled out of the country by traffickers. Her partner claims Joao confessed to
him that – acting alone – he'd sold the youngster to the trafficking gang to raise cash to fund his drug addiction.
Leonor will put her case during an appeal hearing at a Portuguese court.
Madeleine's doctor parents
Kate and Gerry, both 41, are convinced Madeleine, then three, was snatched by child traffickers from their holiday apartment
in Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007.
The spot where she vanished is just 10 miles from where Joana went missing.
The McCanns will fly to Portugal later today for a courtroom showdown with the ex-police chief who still claims they
lied about their daughter's disappearance.
They are suing Goncalo Amaral, 49, for £1million after he
penned a best-selling book, The Truth Of The Lie, about the case. He alleges Madeleine died in an accident and claims her
parents covered it up. Now the couple want a judge to permanently ban the book.
Their spokesman, Clarence Mitchell,
said last night: "Both Kate and Gerry want to be present for the proceedings. They want to see justice being done."
They will use any damages they are awarded to pay private detectives to continue the search for Madeleine.
The couple are convinced their daughter – who would now be six – was abducted and is still alive.
Trial of Leonor Cipriano begins today, 04
04.03.2013 10:59 With thanks
to Joana Morais for translation
The trial of Leonor Cipriano begins today at the Court of Faro. The woman is accused
of having allegedly made false statements when she complained that she had been assaulted by Judicial Police officers.
Some officers [from the previous trial] have already been acquitted, and the Court concluded then that Leonor
Cipriano had lied.
The trial begins this afternoon at 14h00, at the criminal court of first instance in Faro.
The Court of Faro will request the Public Ministry to open a judicial inquiry on
Leonor Cipriano over the crime of false statements in the trial of present and former PJ inspectors within the "Joana
In the ruling, that was read out on Friday and which the Lusa Agency accessed today, the collective
of judges considered that the statements that Leonor Cipriano produced during the trial sessions contained "flagrant
and relevant contradictions", and therefore determined that a certificate should be extracted, to which a copy of the
tape recordings was added.
In the verdict, it is mentioned that the mother of the child that disappeared on the
12th of September 2004, in the village of Figueira, in Portimao, "was offered (...) an extensive opportunity to
reveal the truth" during the trial sessions at the Court of Faro, but "essentially seized the opportunity to lie".
"Leonor Cipriano lied about the manner in which she was beaten, about the identification of the persons that
beat her, about the time and the manner how she revealed that she had been beaten, in short, she lied about every essential
aspect of the statements that she gave", the verdict stresses.
Underlining that Leonor Cipriano presented
"no plausible reason whatsoever to have done so", the collective of three judges, presided by Henrique Pavao,
considered that Joana's mother revealed "major contradictions" and that she presented "very different versions
for one and the same fact".
The verdict, which will also be sent to the PJ's Department of Discipline
and Inspection, where an inquiry is being held against present inspectors Antonio Cardoso and Paulo Marques Bom, considered
the aggressions as proved, although without establishing the aggressors' identity, and determined the condemnation of
two of the five arguidos in the process.
Goncalo Amaral, a former coordinator of the PJ's Criminal Investigation
Department in Portimao, who was acquitted of the crime of omission of denunciation, was condemned to one and a half
years over the crime of false deposition, with a suspended sentence over a similar period.
Nunes Cardoso, who is still in service, was condemned to two years and three months over forgery of document, with a suspended
sentence over two years.
Former PJ inspectors Paulo Pereira Cristovao and Leonel Morgado Marques
and still inspector Paulo Marques Bom, who all stood accused of the crimes of torture against Leonor Cipriano, following the
questioning at the PJ in Faro, in 2004, were acquitted.
Leonor Cipriano and her brother, Joao Cipriano,
were condemned by the Supreme Court of Justice to 16 years in prison each, over the crimes of homicide and concealment of
Leonor Cipriano judged for contradictions,
05 March 2013
Faro: In question are the accusations of aggressions by Judiciary Police officers
versions that she presented about the alleged aggressions that she was a victim of at the headquarters of the Judiciary Police
of Faro, took Leonor Cipriano yesterday to the Court of Faro. Joana's mother - who is doing a jail term of 16 years for
the murder of her daughter - answers for false accusations.
By: Joao Mira
Godinho 05 March 2013 | 01h00 With thanks to Joana Morais for translation
Yesterday, Leonor, 42 years old, repeated what she had said in court, back in 2008, during
the trial of the five inspectors of the Judiciary Police - including Goncalo Amaral and Paulo Pereira Cristovao
- for aggressions during questioning, at the time of the investigation into Joana's death, back in 2004.
repeated that, at the Judiciary Police of Faro headquarters, the officers beat her up "with punches and kicks",
that they beat her "with a cardboard tube", that they placed "a blue plastic bag over her head" and that
they hit her with a "phone book". However, in the answers to the Public Ministry and to the Judge, Joana's mother
contradicted herself: she was unable to give the timing of the aggressions, she stated the tube was made of plastic and she
affirmed that she had always been sitting down, when before she had stated that she had been forced to stay on her knees,
on the top of ashtrays.
"This was an important moment in her life and it would be expected, even for the numerous
times she has been asked the same questions, that she had kept it in her memory" argued the Public Ministry prosecutor,
concluding that Leonor "insists on lying" and that she should be condemned to a jail sentence [for those lies].
The defence attorney* alleged that Leonor Cipriano "has difficulties in explaining herself", which,
allied to a situation "in which the discernment wasn't the best", explains the contradictions. The sentence
was scheduled for the 14th of March.
In 2008, at the trial of the PJ officers, the court ruled as proven that there
was an aggression however they were unable to identify the perpetrators.
Joana Morais): * Marcos Aragao Correia has taken extended leave in Brazil, whilst Marinho Pinto has
apparently decided that the Lawyers Order should not go on being an assistant of her defence. Leonor ... was left with a court-appointed
Leonor Cipriano sentenced to seven months
in prison for false statements, 02 April 2013
Leonor Cipriano sentenced to seven months in prison
for false statements Público
PÚBLICO and Lusa 02/04/2013 - 15:11
Woman wrongly accused PJ officers of assault during questioning.
Leonor Cipriano accused the PJ inspectors of having assaulted her PÚBLICO
Leonor Cipriano was sentenced on Tuesday to seven months in
prison for false statements, says TVI 24. Already serving a sentence of 16 years for the murder of her daughter Joana, who
vanished in September 2004, Leonor was now found to have wrongly accused officers of the Judicial Police of having assaulted
her during questioning.
Leonor Cipriano, who is currently serving 16 years in prison for murder and concealment
of a corpse, gave contradictory statements about alleged abuse she had suffered at the premises of the Judicial Police (PJ)
in Faro during questioning that was conducted whilst investigating the disappearance of her daughter, on September 12, from
the village of Figueira, Portimao.
In the ruling the collective of judges considered that the statements
that Leonor Cipriano produced during the trial sessions contained "flagrant and relevant contradictions", despite
having had the "opportunity to reveal the truth". The court has, however, considered the aggressions as proved,
although without establishing the aggressors' identity.
In the same case, Goncalo Amaral, a former coordinator
of the PJ's Criminal Investigation Department in Portimao, who was acquitted of the crime of omission of denunciation,
was condemned to one and a half years over the crime of false deposition, with a suspended sentence over a similar period.
Inspector Antonio Nunes Cardoso was condemned to two years and three months over forgery of a document, with a suspended
sentence over two years.
In turn, the former PJ inspectors Paulo Pereira Cristovao and Leonel Morgado
Marques and Paulo Marques Bom, who all stood accused of the crimes of torture against Leonor Cipriano following the questioning,
Leonor Cipriano condemned to seven more months
in prison, 02 April 2013
Leonor Cipriano condemned to seven more months in prison
By Lux on 04/02/2013 16:26 With thanks to Joana Morais for translation and notes
The Court of Faro condemned today Leonor Cipriano
to seven more months in prison for making false accusations in the process which incriminated five Judiciary Police officers
of the crimes of aggression and torture.
This prison sentence is added to the 16 years that the defendant is serving
for the murder of her daughter Joana - who disappeared from the village of Figueira, in Portimao, on September 12 2004
- and of which she has served about half.
According to the court, it was proved that Leonor Cipriano lied about
the way in which the officers had beaten her, having presented in trial different versions of the facts that took place during
the questionings to which she was subjected to, in 2004, after the crime.
According to the judge who delivered
the judgment today, despite not having taken oath, the defendant, in the capacity of assistant to the process, was warned
that she could not misrepresent the truth, at the risk of being punished and, if she had done it, she did it "because
she wanted" and in a conscious manner.
The court considered the illegality of the act committed takes on a
"grave aspect" and is "above average", given the long sentence the defendant is serving, the seriousness
of the facts, the quality of the defendants [the five PJ officers accused by Leonor Cipriano] and the media coverage of the
"It is crystal clear the defendant misrepresented the truth", states the ruling, which highlights
the several contradictions relative to the manner in which she alleges she was beaten and to the agents that were present
in the interrogation room where she alleged to have been attacked.
The possibility of a suspended prison sentence
was dismissed because the court considered that, despite the long jail sentence that the defendant is already serving, she
continued to show disrespect for the rules.
The court also added that it would be "naive" to believe
that a "mere threat" of imprisonment would contribute to the "recovery" of the defendant, whose appearance
today in court, to hear the reading of the judgment, was waived.
The contradictory statements about the aggressions
of which she was a target were made between 2008 and 2009, at the time of the trial1 of the inspectors
who investigated the "Joana Case", which resulted in the condemnation of two of the five defendants in that process.
That court considered the aggressions proven even though the identity of the attackers was never established.
Goncalo Amaral, a former coordinator of the PJ's Criminal Investigation Department in Portimao, who was
acquitted of the crime of omission of denunciation, was condemned to one and a half years over the crime of false deposition,
with a suspended sentence over a similar period.
The inspector Antonio Nunes Cardoso was condemned to two
years and three months for the falsification of a document, with a suspended sentence of two years.
Judiciary Police inspectors Paulo Pereira Cristovao, Leonel Morgado Marques and Paulo Marques Bom, who were
accused of having tortured Leonor Cipriano during the questionings2 at the headquarters of the
PJ of Faro, were all absolved.
In prison, Leonor Cipriano is attending the 9th grade of school and also works
on the placement of labels on fruit cases, the court said, adding that the detainee does not receive visits from friends
Leonor's brother, Joao Cipriano, is also serving a 16 years jail sentence for the crimes
of homicide and concealment of a corpse.
- Leonor Cipriano's lawyer at the time of the trial against the five Judiciary Police inspectors was Marcos Aragao
Correia who had a pivotal role intertwining the Maddie and the Joana cases; the Lawyers Order head of the bar, Marinho Pinto,
timely requested for the order to become assistant for the accusation and was represented by Rodrigo Santiago, thus annulling
the possibility of asking Marinho Pinto to testify in relation to the Expresso 2005 "torture" article.
2 - Leonor Cipriano had already confessed to her crimes on October 13 2004, and was accompanied by her
lawyer at the time, Célia Costa, during the questioning before the alleged aggressions on October 14 2004 took place.
ab) at a certain point in time, due to a motive that has not been
exactly established, both arguidos started, conjointly, to successively hit minor CC on the head, prompting her to hit her
head on the wall's corner, being visible that she bled, from her mouth, her nose and her temple, due to the hits against
the wall, which also caused the minor's fall and her death, thus ceasing the arguidos' activity;
of blood from the minor remained on the living room's walls and floor, on various spots, and also near the entrance;
ad) the arguidos ensured that CC was dead, verifying that she neither breathed nor reacted, and then, not wanting
to be held responsible over their daughter's and niece's death, decided to prevent said death from becoming known
ae) therefore, they soon decided that they would have to ensure that the existence of any signs in the
house of what they had just done could not be verified, that the minor's body would never be found and that, preferably,
everyone would be convinced that the minor had been taken by a third party;
af) therefore, arguida BB remained
at home, washing the wall and the floor that had signs of blood from CC, as well as the spot where the minor remained slumped
after death, using a mop and its bucket to do so.
aah) the arguidos managed to disturb the investigative
activities and prevented the mortal remains of minor CC, whose life they took, from being located;
aai) the aforementioned
activities were carried out by the arguidos under concerted efforts and intentions, in a deliberate, free and conscious manner,
fully knowing that those behaviours are punished by law;
aaj) therefore as far as taking the life of CC, their
direct relative (daughter and niece), is concerned, which they did by employing force, taking advantage of the fact that she
couldn't defend herself (taking into account her age and physical built) and using force in the full knowledge that, considering
the vital area in which her body was hit (the head) repeatedly and violently, prompting the minor's head to hit the wall,
they could take her life away from her, a consequence which they accepted, still not ceasing their activity;
not seeing as an obstacle the circumstance that the minor depended on her mother and was a direct relative of both, and should
be defended instead of victimised by them;
aam) in the same deliberate, free and conscious manner, and knowing
that such behaviour is punishable, they carried out the above described action of cutting CC's body, demonstrating total
insensibility, knowing full well that, in this manner, they offended the communitarian respect that is due to the dead, acting
with the purpose of CC's body never being found again, hiding it in a location that is not appropriated for the effect,
in order to try to avoid responsibility for her death;
Extracts from Supreme Court of Justice - ruling on the Homicide and concealment of eight-year-old Joana Cipriano's body, 20.04.2006 [in Portuguese here]