The purpose of this site is for information and a record of Gerry McCann's Blog Archives. As most people will appreciate GM deleted all past blogs from the official website. Hopefully this Archive will be helpful to anyone who is interested in Justice for Madeleine Beth McCann. Many Thanks, Pamalam

Note: This site does not belong to the McCanns. It belongs to Pamalam. If you wish to contact the McCanns directly, please use the contact/email details campaign@findmadeleine.com    

Scotland Yard Investigation - Feb 2014*

MCCANN FILES HOME BACK TO GERRY MCCANNS BLOGS HOME PAGE PHOTOGRAPHS
NEWS REPORTS INDEX MCCANN PJ FILES NEWS MAY 2007
 

Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe

 

The media continue their hunt for 'suspects'...

20 February 2014: The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, discusses progress in the Madeleine McCann case on BBC Radio 5live and claims his officers have the names of suspects involved in case.

Madeleine McCann madness continues - and leaves her parents with nothing once more, 01 February 2014
Madeleine McCann madness continues - and leaves her parents with nothing once more Sunday Mirror

Carole Malone, Feb 01, 2014 20:00

Sunday Mirror columnist Carole Malone questions why small-time burglars are suspected by Scotland Yard of snatching the little girl

Madeleine McCann

Missing: Maddie

Scotland Yard detectives ­probing Madeleine McCann's disappearance are saying she might have been taken by three burglars who'd been robbing apartments in the area.

Seriously? Burglars? I'm sorry, but the kind of crooks who break into holiday lets are looking for a few euros, mobiles and a bit of jewellery.

They don't see a little girl and think, "Oh we'll take her instead". They'd run a mile rather than kidnap a child because they're small-time.

And while they have contacts who can "fence" baubles and cameras, they're unlikely to have any who can sell children.

The Met are saying they believe these burglars could have taken Maddie because the night she disappeared they were making lots of calls to each other.

Well they would if they were on the rob in an area where cops had been alerted that a little girl was missing.

And if the Met has to write "request letters" to the ­Portuguese police asking if they can search these men's homes and access their bank accounts, how close are they to arresting anyone?

Four officers from ­Operation Grange in Portugal last week, are now back in London having made no arrests.

How devastating this must all be for Kate and Gerry McCann – another flurry of headlines, more promises of suspects and arrests... and then nothing. Again!

Madeleine McCann detectives 'probe Portuguese gypsy site 15-minutes away from holiday home where three year-old was snatched in 2007', 03 February 2014
Madeleine McCann detectives 'probe Portuguese gypsy site 15-minutes away from holiday home where three year-old was snatched in 2007' Daily Mail
  • 'Traveller site' at Meia Praia investigated by police, according to reports
  • Detectives also believed to be looking into another site 30 miles away
  • Police have identified three burglars as prime suspects in disappearance
By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
PUBLISHED: 09:58, 3 February 2014 | UPDATED: 17:17, 3 February 2014

A site believed to be used to travellers close to the holiday resort where Madeleine McCann disappeared is being investigated by police leading the probe into her disappearance, it has been claimed.

According to reports, detectives from Scotland Yard are carrying out investigations at a site in Meia Praia, situated seven miles from the holiday apartment in Praia da Luz where Madeleine disappeared from in May 2007.

Earlier this month the Mail exclusively revealed Scotland Yard had identified three burglars as prime suspects.

 
Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are understood to be investigating a traveller site not far from the holiday resort from where she disappeared

 
Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are understood to be investigating a traveller site not far from the holiday resort from where she disappeared

 

Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are understood to be investigating a traveller site not far from the holiday resort from where she disappeared

------------------

One theory is that the burglars raided the McCanns' flat and were panicked into snatching the youngster when she woke up.

Analysis of mobile phone data suggests the men were close to the scene of her abduction, at the time she went missing, and were in close contact in the hours that followed.

Last week it was reported the three suspects had worked at the resort where Madeleine disappeared.

Details of the men's alleged links to the Ocean Club resort in the Algarve were revealed in Portuguese newspapers with close contacts with local police.

 
Detectives are understood to be carrying out investigations at Meia Praia, a site seven miles from the holiday apartment in Praia da Luz from where Madeleine disappeared in May 2007

 

Detectives are understood to be carrying out investigations at Meia Praia, a site seven miles from the holiday apartment in Praia da Luz from where Madeleine disappeared in May 2007

------------------

 
Madeleine McCann went missing from her apartment in The Ocean Club in Praia Da Luz in 2007


 

Madeleine McCann went missing from her apartment in The Ocean Club in Praia Da Luz in 2007


--------------------------


According to The Sun, officers are now also understood to be investigating a site in the area of Meia Praia along with another site 30 miles away.

A Briton who has a holiday home near where the McCann family stayed in Praia da Luz told the paper officers from Scotland Yard had asked him about Meia Praia.

He said: 'They wanted to know everything that I knew about the people living there.'

Meia Praia is also believed to be home to a group of fishermen who moved into the area about 40 years ago.

Scotland Yard were unable to confirm reports of the two sites being investigated.

Maddie cops hunt ex-hotel minibus driver in fresh lead, 04 February 2014
Maddie cops hunt ex-hotel minibus driver in fresh lead Daily Star

POLICE are hunting a former minibus driver at the Algarve holiday resort where Madeleine McCann went missing.

By Paul Robins / Published 4th February 2014

MYSTERY: Maddie disappeared in 2007 - police are currently following a new lead [EPA]

The unnamed 40-year-old used to ferry tourists between the Ocean Club complex and Faro Airport at the time the youngster vanished.

Detectives reckon he could hold the key to cracking the seven-year riddle of Maddie's disappearance.

Madeleine was three when she went missing from her bed in Praia da Luz in May 2007.

Officers from Portugal's Policia Judiciaria are believed to have spent days scouring the resort in a bid to track down the ex-Ocean Club worker.

The former minibus driver is now thought to be jobless after a short stint working in a local bar.

A hotel worker told Portuguese media: "Three individuals who identified themselves as PJ officers were here days ago.

"They were asking where a man who worked at the Ocean Club when Madeleine disappeared lived.

"At the time he used to pick up tourists who were staying at the Ocean Club from Faro Airport and at the end of their stay he would run them back to the airport."

The major breakthrough comes after Metropolitan Police officers identified three former Ocean Club workers as prime suspects in the case.

Crunch British detectives believe the trio may be behind a string of burglaries at the holiday complex in the run-up to Maddie's disappearance.

Police believe the three men would have known the layout of the Ocean Club complex and the best escape routes for anyone taking a child.

It is one of the best leads to emerge since the Met reopened the case following pleas from Maddie's family.

Scotland Yard officers now want to search their homes and probe their bank accounts.

They held a crunch meeting with senior Portuguese officials last week in the hope of gaining permission to operate on Portuguese soil.

It follows a painstaking coldcase UK review supported by Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry, both 45.

A trawl of mobile phone records revealed that the three suspects were nearby and made a number of calls to each other in the hours after Maddie was reported missing.

According to reports, people living in the area have also pointed out how the former minibus driver "was always using his mobile phone".

One theory is that the burglars raided the McCanns' flat and were panicked into snatching the youngster when she woke up.

But Brit police have also turned their attention to a notorious gypsy site seven miles from Praia da Luz.

Detectives were understood to be investigating the area of Meia Praia along with another traveller site 30 miles away.

Last October it emerged another former worker had been made a prime suspect.

Waiter Euclides Monteiro, 40, was forced to quit his job after being caught stealing tips.

The immigrant from Cape Verde was killed in a tractor accident in 2009.

His family were furious and claimed that the Portuguese authorities were trying to use him as a scapegoat for Madeleine's disappearance.

Madeleine McCann: Cops probing claims a kidnapper tried to snatch another British tot from holiday flat in Portugal, 06 February 2014
Madeleine McCann: Cops probing claims a kidnapper tried to snatch another British tot from holiday flat in Portugal Daily Mirror

By Piers Eady | Feb 06, 2014 02:01

A mum has told Scotland Yard how she chased an intruder away from her Algarve apartment after she found him heading towards her child's cot

Madeleine McCann

Missing: Madeleine McCann disappeared in May 2007

Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are probing claims a kidnapper tried to snatch another British tot from a holiday flat in Portugal.

A mum has told Scotland Yard how she chased an intruder away from her Algarve apartment after she found him heading towards her child's cot.

The unnamed mum reported it to Portuguese police at the time, but it is claimed they failed to search the area or take fingerprints.

Detectives investigating three-year-old Maddy's disappearance have now interviewed the mum.

A source said: "British detectives are keen to establish whether Portuguese officers missed a crucial line of inquiry here.

"There is some confusion over why this was not taken more seriously."

It was reported that the mum said she heard a noise late one night and caught the intruder heading for the cot.

The would-be-kidnapper fled the apartment, thought to be in an apartment in an Algarve resort north of Praia da Luz, where Maddy was taken.

The alleged incident happened in 2010 - three years after Maddy vanished from her bed while on holiday with her parents Kate and Gerry and twin brother and sister.

Scotland Yard detectives are still waiting for permission to quiz three ex-staff members at the complex where the McCanns of Rothley, Leics, stayed.

Yet more Madeleine misinformation, 06 February 2014
Yet more Madeleine misinformation Portugal Newswatch

Posted by Len Port at 9:22 AM
Thursday, February 6, 2014

Churning out the news without a care

The recent flurry of fictitious reports about the Madeleine McCann case is another example of how far quality journalism has been replaced by the latest form of 'churnalism.'

A story is concocted by a reporter and published on the website of a major newspaper or TV network. Within hours, it has been copied, rewritten or translated without anyone bothering to check for accuracy. If it is sensational enough, the story is then regurgitated around the world.

The media have long been able to share important information from established news agencies and other reliable sources. The rot set in with the upsurge some years ago of propaganda and slanted press releases put out by PR people. The Internet has dramatically speeded and simplified shoddy, second-hand reporting.

Churnalism has now reached unprecedented levels with media organisations shamelessly copying one another online. As a result, a profusion of misinformation is spewed out daily.

Last week's excitement over the Madeleine McCann case was based on the fact that four Scotland Yard detectives flew to the Algarve to meet with Polícia Judiciária counterparts. The visit followed a letter of request sent by the British Crown Prosecution Service to the Portuguese equivalent.

Officials in both countries refused to comment on the contents of the letter or the reason for the visit. This did not stop the British tabloids from improvising. They spoke of "a dramatic breakthrough" and claimed that the arrest of three burglars was "imminent."

Kate and Gerry McCann were said to be "on tenderhooks" and being "kept fully informed" about the latest developments.

 
Daily Mirror, 29 January 2014

These "exclusive" assertions in the Daily Mirror were picked up and used not only by competing tabloids, but by 'quality' papers such as the Guardian and the Daily Telegraph.

Portuguese papers did not jump on the bandwagon, but the revelation of a 'breakthrough' spun around the world and found its way into the Sydney Morning Herald, the Times of India, the Huffington Post and the Daily Beast to name but a few online services.

The Epoch Times, which prides itself on being published in 21 languages in 35 countries across five continents, was running the same "imminent arrest" yarn on the same day ITV mercifully set the record straight with the headline: "No imminent plans to make any arrests in Madeleine McCann case."

ITV described the meeting between British and Portuguese detectives as "a routine part of the investigation to establish what happened to Madeleine McCann."

USA Today quoted the British investigative reporter and former detective Mark Williams-Thomas as saying, "this isn't a major breakthrough" and "burglars don’t abduct children."

By then the media damage had been done. As the Sunday Mirror columnist Carole Malone put it: "How devastating this must all be for Kate and Gerry McCann – another flurry of headlines, more promises of suspects and arrests... and then nothing. Again!"

The copy and paste style of churnalism practised nowadays is akin to plagiarism, but who cares? For example, a retired British police superintendent with a keen interest in the McCann case spotted that several paragraphs in a Daily Mirror story on 28 December had been copied almost word-for-word, without quoting or crediting the source, from a story that had appeared in the Daily Mail on 15 October. He brought this to the attention of both papers and the Press Complaints Commission. They expressed little interest.

Journalistic analysts put the growth in churnalism down to a combination of things, including increased competition, reduced revenues and inadequate staff with insufficient time to verify and properly develop stories.

It is likely to get ever more frantic. We have already moved on from last week's "imminent arrests" to this week's tabloid revelation that "detectives are probing a Portuguese gypsy site just 15 minutes away from where Madeleine was snatched."

Well, maybe, but for starters the place the foreign media are talking about is not a gypsy site at all.

One thing is certain though: the media will continue to churn out this sort of rubbish as long as there are people who want to read it.

British police CAN still solve Madeleine McCann mystery despite the problems of working with foreign forces, 08 February 2014
British police CAN still solve Madeleine McCann mystery despite the problems of working with foreign forces Daily Mirror

Lord Stevens, 08-02-2014

 

The former Met Commissioner has investigated high-profile deaths overseas and is aware of the hurdles Scotland Yard detectives face in Portugal

Madeleine McCann

Still missing: Madeleine McCann

As Kate and Gerry McCann have found over the past seven years, the Portuguese criminal and judicial system is very different to what we are used to at home.

So much so that they found themselves being publicly named as suspects at an early stage of the investigation to find their missing daughter Madeleine.

British police are now trying to play catch-up and provide the thorough examination of the facts and evidence that appears to have been so badly mishandled back in 2007.

It is no wonder that the Portuguese police feel vulnerable about what they have – or haven't – done in the past.

This makes the building of a strong relationship between the new teams involved so crucial to any successful progress in this case. It has to be a partnership and not a competition to see who makes the next breakthrough.

There are some positive signs that the Portuguese and Scotland Yard investigative teams are working together, but some difficulties remain. This week, for instance, it has been reported that they were investigating different targets.

When our police work overseas they do not have the power of arrest. They can advise and make a request but it has to be carried out for them. Every move needs to be sanctioned and supported by the local force.

This can be a very frustrating and time-consuming process but needs to be followed to the letter if any breakthrough is to be achieved. It also needs to be done properly if any subsequent prosecutions are to stand the best chance of success.

Apart from the cultural and language barriers, you should not underestimate the complexity and sensitivity of our police officers working with their colleagues from overseas. That is why police officers need to be skilled diplomats when on foreign soil.

They know they will only make progress if they work with the local force and respect the way they go about their work – even if it seems to be very slow and ponderous.

As I found with my inquiry into the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, patience is needed by both home and overseas forces to build a partnership that can deliver results which stand the test of whichever country’s judicial system will be governing the investigation.

For example, getting some of the 600 plus evidential exhibits released for analysis back in England was just one of the obstacles we faced.

It took time, but we eventually got the agreement of the French authorities to go ahead and bring the crash car back to England.

This helped us conduct a complete reconstruction of the collision. The results proved hugely important in enabling a proper assessment to take place at the inquest in London.

But there can also be difficulties dealing with different forces closer to home.

During my inquiries into ­collusion and murder in Northern Ireland, my team came face to face with those responsible for the original investigations – some of whom had been accused of committing the crimes themselves.

It was little wonder that our work touched many raw nerves and sensitivities.

Gaining the confidence and trust of the local force, the victims and their families was crucial, while following the evidence wherever it took us.

This was not easy as we faced a concerted campaign to discredit the inquiry. It took more than 15 years and three linked inquiries to get to the bottom of what had been going on.

Determination got us through many difficult moments, including mental and physical pressures and threats.

Many courageous officers from the Royal Ulster Constabulary were keen to help us with our enquiries. However, some were very evasive and defensive.

We met walls of silence. Secret Intelligence records disappeared from files.

The safety and security of the team was forever uppermost in my mind. Especially when our offices burnt down one night. Mysteriously, the smoke alarms and heat sensors failed to go off and the telephone lines were cut.

Senior RUC officers blamed a secret unit in British military intelligence. To this day it has never been proven but I believe I know who was responsible.

As Metropolitan Police Commissioner, I was invited to send a team to Jamaica to investigate a shooting. The starting point here was gaining the support of their government for the professionals who would be doing the legwork.

The support and guidance of the Foreign Office, our High Commissioner and his team in Jamaica was crucial to making progress.

They put us on the right track with the right connections to steer the team through the local systems and structures. All of this takes a lot of time and patience.

With crime increasingly taking on an international dimension it is essential that police officers can get co-operation from the governments and police forces of every country – not just in Europe but across the whole world.

Scotland Yard has a long history of conducting investigations overseas and they know better than anyone how to get on with their foreign partners.

That is why the Home Secretary asked them back in 2011 to look in to the Madeleine McCann case to try and find out what happened to her.

It might appear painfully slow, but rest assured they will be doing all they can to give the family the answers they are looking for.

If anyone can solve this case... they can.

Madeleine cover-up, 09 February 2014
Madeleine cover-up Sunday Express (paper edition)

 
Sunday Express, 09 February 2014

 

Resort staff did not tell police that keys to McCanns' whole block had been stolen

EXCLUSIVE
From James Murray INVESTIGATIONS EDITOR IN PRAIA DA LUZ

KEYS to the holiday apartment from which Madeleine McCann was abducted were lost shortly before she vanished, it was claimed last night.

However, police were not informed about the loss of potentially crucial evidence which could unlock the seven-year mystery.

A Sunday Express investigation in Portugal has revealed astonishing new information which, if proved, suggests the kidnap was well planned and executed using stolen keys. Amid claims that Portuguese police were about to arrest three former workers at the Ocean Club in Praia

TURN TO PAGE 7

-------------------

Apartment key theft cover-up by resort staff in Madeleine McCann case
Sunday Express

KEYS to the holiday apartment from which Madeleine McCann was abducted were lost shortly before she vanished, it was claimed last night.

By: James Murray
Published: Sun, February 9, 2014

MYSTERY: The McCanns' ground-floor apartment. [MARK KEHOE]

However, police were not informed about the loss of potentially crucial evidence which could unlock the seven-year mystery.

A Sunday Express investigation in Portugal has revealed astonishing new information which, if proved, suggests the kidnap was well planned and executed using stolen keys.

Amid claims that Portuguese police are about to arrest three former workers at the Ocean Club in Praia da Luz, based on information gathered by Scotland Yard, we tracked down a former maintenance worker at the complex whose revelations could change the direction of the international investigation.

The retired man, whose identity we have agreed to protect, said: "I have kept this to myself for long enough, so now it is right to tell people what happened.

"There was another maintenance worker at the Ocean Club who said he had lost a set of keys for the whole of block five."

Kate and Gerry McCann, their twins Sean and Amelie and eldest daughter Madeleine, were staying in apartment 5a in the block, where there had been a spate of burglaries in the weeks before she vanished.

The former Ocean Club worker revealed: "I remember my colleague telling some of us the keys to that block had been lost.

"He told us about it in the week when the child was taken but I cannot remember the exact day. In the maintenance department we kept duplicates of all keys to the apartments.

"They were on a long cable and very clearly marked and we kept them in a safe.

"If there was a problem, a water leak, a gas leak, it was important for us to have entry to apartments if the owners or guests were out.

"When the man told us about the lost keys, he started crying. He was very upset. He was worried about losing his job, I think, and he did not want others to know about it.

"After the child disappeared, we all had to give statements to the police but I did not mention the keys had been lost because I did not think it was relevant."

Shortly after Madeleine went missing, the world's media descended on the Ocean Club and staff were told not to speak to journalists and to co-operate fully with police.

DENIALS: Maintenance worker Tiago da Silva [MARK KEHOE]

It was widely reported then that someone may have entered 5a through unlocked patio doors so people were not suggesting stolen duplicate keys could have been used to gain access through the front door.

The man said: "This has been on my mind for a long time and you are the first person I have told about it. I did not want to get the other man into trouble, I suppose.

"I didn't really like the man and I didn't want trouble from him. He was always doing nasty pranks. Once he put fibreglass in my work trousers which is not nice because it rubs against the skin and hurts.

"He was a young, confident man and I was a lot older than him and we just didn't get on. In fact, he was the reason I left the job. After the little girl was taken, the atmosphere was really bad. It was not a good place to work."

The Sunday Express has seen the statement the man gave to Portuguese police shortly after Madeleine was taken on the evening of May 3, 2007 ,and there is no mention of him stating keys had gone missing.

A Portuguese newspaper reported last week that police were particularly interested in a driver at the Ocean Club who dropped guests at the apartments after they arrived from Faro airport.

The man said: "On that night I was asked to do some driving because the man who was supposed to do the driving did not arrive at work. I remember ringing my wife and telling her I would be late home that night."

Now that the man has come forward with new information he is likely to have to give a more detailed statement to police.

Mum claims Madeleine McCann kidnappers may have tried to snatch her child in Algarve weeks beforehand, 09 February 2014
Mum claims Madeleine McCann kidnappers may have tried to snatch her child in Algarve weeks beforehand Daily Mirror

By Gemma Aldridge | Feb 09, 2014 00:00

Detectives are to interview the mother whose drink was spiked by gypsy gang who showed an unnatural interest in her fair-haired daughter

Target: Mum with daughter on terror holiday

 

Target: Mum with daughter on terror holiday

Madeleine McCann's kidnappers may have tried to snatch another blonde British toddler weeks before she vanished.

A mum has told Scotland Yard she believes "gypsy" restaurant staff in the Algarve spiked her drink then tried to carry her year-old daughter to a getaway car waiting outside.

She says she reported the dramatic incident to the Find Madeleine campaign line in 2007, but they were then too busy pursuing other lines of inquiry.

But now police from Operation Grange are set to interview the mum for a second time in two months in the hope it will uncover new evidence in the hunt for Madeleine.

The 30-year-old, who does not want to be named, was holidaying with her mother and her daughter in Montechoro near Albufeira – 30 miles from Praia da Luz where Maddie, three, vanished six weeks later.

She says she became aware of a gang of migrants from the former Soviet Union, working on the resort's strip, taking a sinister interest in her girl.

"It was terrifying, like something out of a film," said the mum. "From the first day of the holiday, a young dark-haired man kept popping up wherever we went. We would arrive at a restaurant and he'd show up minutes later as though he had been tipped off.

"It was low season so everywhere was quiet. There were about three or four restaurants open but the same staff would show up where we were. They all knew the dark-haired man. It felt like the Eastern European mafia was watching us.

"On the third night the man walked up to us, and chatted to us – but all about my daughter. He was obsessed, playing with her, stroking her hair. It was very over-familiar. He kept touching her and commenting on her blonde hair.

"She was struggling to eat her fish fingers and he picked them up and tried to feed them to her. It was all very uncomfortable.

"He was about 25 and my mum told him it was unusual to see someone his age interested in children. He said he had nephews back home. And he kept saying how cute she was," said the mum.

Missing: Madeleine McCann

Missing: Madeleine McCann

The night before their flight home, things took a nightmarish twist. "He knew we were leaving," said the mum. "We went into a restaurant and he arrived.

"There was a middle-aged couple who had served us before at another place. They were all over my daughter.

"They told me they missed their children in Uzbekistan and begged me to let them hold her."

In the meantime they had served her with a glass of rosé wine.

"Within half an hour I felt really dizzy," said the mum. "I knew I'd been drugged. It was only us in the restaurant and I felt vulnerable. I stood up and told mum we had to leave. As I did, the woman lifted my daughter out of her high chair and walked to the door.

"I heard an engine running. The man had vanished. I was terrified and managed to grab her back and barge the woman out of the way.

"We ran back to the hotel in the dark and bolted ourselves in the room. We were so frightened."

The mum contacted police last October after a blonde girl found living with Roma gypsies in Greece was mistakenly thought to be Madeleine.

She said: "I've given a statement to Scotland Yard, and they are arranging to interview me again.

"I'll do anything I can to help. I didn't want to push it at the time because the investigators had their own theories.

But now I'm speaking out. I can't be the only mum who has had a near-miss. Someone might know something that could change the investigation.

"Police are taking what happened to us seriously."

Her revelation comes days after it was revealed another family fear their young daughter was almost snatched in the Algarve in 2010.

Met detectives are still awaiting permission to question three ex-staff at the complex in Praia da Luz where the McCanns were staying in May 2007.

'Tempo of Madeleine McCann inquiry moving forwards,' say detectives, 13 February 2014
'Tempo of Madeleine McCann inquiry moving forwards,' say detectives Evening Standard

Missing: Madeleine McCann was taken from the Ocean Club in Portugal

Missing: Madeleine McCann was taken from the Ocean Club in Portugal

JUSTIN DAVENPORT, CRIME EDITOR
Published: 13 February 2014
Updated: 13:49, 13 February 2014

Detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann have issued a new request for help to the Portuguese authorities.

The development came as a senior Scotland Yard officer said the "tempo" of the inquiry into the missing toddler was "moving forward."

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt, who is overseeing the operation, said the Yard had sent a third international letter of request to Portuguese officials linked to their inquiries.

He said: "Clearly the investigative tempo is moving forward as we are progressing the investigation and the work we are asking the Portuguese to undertake for us. We are carrying on our liaison at all levels."

Members of the inquiry team, including Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood, were in Portugal again today on a "routine visit" to meet counterparts from Portugal's Policia Judiciaria.

Madeleine was nearly four when she disappeared from her room in the Ocean Club complex in Praia da Luz where she was staying with her family in 2007.

Scotland Yard launched a fresh investigation into the girl's disappearance last July – two years into a review of the case – and made renewed appeals on television in the UK, the Netherlands and Germany.

Detectives in the UK must submit International Letters of Request to their counterparts overseas in order to get action undertaken in a foreign country.

Recent discussions between the two forces are believed to have centred on a burglary gang who had targeted homes in the resort at the time Madeleine vanished.

Mobile phone records are said to have revealed that three suspected burglars repeatedly called each other in the hours after Madeleine disappeared.

Mr Hewitt said so far the Yard had not asked the Portugese authorities to interview or arrest any suspects.

Scotland Yard has played down speculation of imminent arrests in the case saying they are pursuing several lines of inquiry. Met officers have been to Portugal more than 20 times in the past 18 months.

In October, Portuguese authorities said a review had uncovered information prompting them to reopen their own inquiry.

No-one has been arrested.

Madeleine McCann detectives send third letter of request to Portuguese authorities, 13 February 2014
Madeleine McCann detectives send third letter of request to Portuguese authorities The Herald

[By Press Association]
Thursday 13 February 2014


British prosecutors have sent a third international letter of request to Portuguese authorities on behalf of detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

Scotland Yard stressed that the document, sent on Friday, was a routine part of their inquiry but would not reveal what the letter said.

The communications are used to ask the Portuguese police to carry out certain pieces of work on the British force's behalf.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt said that so far no requests to carry out interviews or arrests had been made.

He said: "We sent a further detailed letter of request which went out from the CPS on Friday.

"This is part of an ongoing process.

"The way this investigation is working at the moment is we are using that process, letters of request, and they are now going to be going out routinely."

Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood has travelled to Portugal again this week for a routine meeting with investigators there.

Mr Hewitt added: "Clearly the investigative tempo is moving forward as we're progressing the investigation and the work that we're asking the Portuguese to undertake for us.

"We're carrying on our liaison at all levels."

Madeleine, who was then nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on May 3 2007 as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

British detectives launched a fresh investigation into the youngster's disappearance in July last year - two years into a review of the case - and made renewed appeals on television in the UK, the Netherlands and Germany.

After shelving their inquiry into Madeleine's disappearance in 2008, Portuguese authorities said last October that a review had uncovered enough new information to justify reopening it.

Madeleine McCann cops admit 'tempo of investigation is moving forward' after requesting more help from Portuguese police, 13 February 2014
Madeleine McCann cops admit 'tempo of investigation is moving forward' after requesting more help from Portuguese police Daily Mirror

By Anthony Bond | Feb 13, 2014 16:29

Scotland Yard revealed today it had sent a third international letter of request to the authorities in Portugal

 
Madeleine McCann


 

Cops investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann have sent a new request for help to Portuguese police - after admitting the 'tempo is moving forward'.

Scotland Yard revealed today it had sent a third international letter of request to the authorities in Portugal. The force said that the document was a routine part of their inquiry, but would not reveal what the letter said.

The communications are used to ask the Portuguese police to carry out certain pieces of work on the British force's behalf.

It came as Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt admitted that the inquiry was making progress.

He said: "Clearly the investigative tempo is moving forward as we are progressing the investigation and the work we are asking the Portuguese to undertake for us. We are carrying on our liaison at all levels."

He said so far no requests to carry out interviews or arrests had been made.

"We sent a further detailed letter of request which went out from the CPS on Friday", he said

"This is part of an ongoing process. The way this investigation is working at the moment is we are using that process, letters of request, and they are now going to be going out routinely."

Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood has travelled to Portugal again this week for a routine meeting with investigators there.

Madeleine, who was then nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on May 3 2007 as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

British detectives launched a fresh investigation into the youngster's disappearance in July last year - two years into a review of the case - and made renewed appeals on television in the UK, the Netherlands and Germany.

After shelving their inquiry into Madeleine's disappearance in 2008, Portuguese authorities said last October that a review had uncovered enough new information to justify reopening it.

English want to question more people in the Maddie case, 13 February 2014
English want to question more people in the Maddie case Jornal de Notícias

MARISA RODRIGUES
18.37 [13 February 2014]
With thanks to Astro for translation

Maddie disappeared in 2007
Maddie disappeared in 2007

The British police is going to send the third rogatory letter concerning the Madeleine McCann case to Portugal. The decision was communicated to the Judiciary Police during a meeting that took place this Thursday in Faro.

Scotland Yard detectives are going to ask for more people out of the approximately forty persons that they consider "of interest" within the investigation into the disappearance of the child, in Praia da Luz, in the Algarve, in 2007.

A source at the PJ confirms the meeting which was used, just like the ones before, to take stock of the judiciary cooperation between both countries.

This new request for judiciary assistance appears at a time when the diligences that are included in the second rogatory letter still have to be carried out, namely the questioning of three former workers at the resort where the child disappeared from, searches and analyses of bank accounts.

Madeleine McCann cops say they've made good progress and the search is moving forwards, 14 February 2014
Madeleine McCann cops say they've made good progress and the search is moving forwards Daily Mirror

By Russell Myers | Feb 14, 2014 00:00

Scotland Yard working closely with Portuguese police and have just sent third letter to appeal for more help

 
Madeleine McCann

The Scotland Yard probe into Madeleine McCann's disappearance is "moving forward", a top officer declared yesterday.

British detectives have sent a third "letter of request" for help to Portuguese colleagues hunting for the youngster, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt revealed.

Another senior officer, Det Ch Insp Andy Redwood, flew out again this week to meet police in the Algarve.

Mr Hewitt said: "We sent a further detailed letter of request, which went out from the Crown Prosecution Service last Friday. This is part of an ongoing process and such letters will now be going out routinely.

"The investigative tempo is moving forward as we progress the investigation and with the work we're asking the Portuguese to do for us. We’re carrying on our liaison at all levels."

He said no requests for interviews or arrests have been made so far.

Maddie, three, was snatched on holiday at Praia da Luz in 2007. The Yard launched a new probe last July.

Madeleine: Police close in on 3 suspects, 14 February 2014
Madeleine: Police close in on 3 suspects Daily Express (paper edition)

 
Daily Express, 14 February 2014

 

Breakthrough as British detectives return to Portugal

By Paul Jeeves

[text same as online version]

TURN TO PAGE 5

--------------------

Madeleine McCann: Police close in on three suspects in Portugal Daily Express

BRITISH police are closing in on three burglars identified as prime suspects in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

By: Paul Jeeves
Published: Fri, February 14, 2014

British police are closing in on their goal - and are spurring Portuguese police into action [PA]

They are stepping up pressure on their Portuguese counterparts to help gather evidence against the gang.

Detective Chief Insp­ector Andy Redwood, who is leading the UK hunt for Madeleine, was in Portugal last night discussing the next move with senior local officers.

So far the process has been caught up in red tape, causing frustrating delays. It was revealed yesterday that Scotland Yard have sent a third letter to Portugal asking police there to make further inquiries.

None of the three suspects has been arrested or even faced questioning yet. Yard officers spent months investigating mobile phone data which places them close to the holiday apartment in Praia da Luz where three-year-old Madeleine vanished on May 3, 2007.

But every time they want to follow up a new lead they have to ask the Crown Prosecution Service to write to their Portuguese counterparts, who then forward the request to local police.

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt revealed yesterday that the "tempo" of the Yard investigation was increasing. And he said further letters requesting more inquiries would now be fired off to Portugal "routinely" as the investigation gathers pace.

"We sent a further detailed letter of request which went out from the Crown Prosecution Service on Friday," he said.

"There have been three letters so far. This is the process we are working with.

"As we get information back from the request letters that have already gone out, that generates new activity. The letter of request is for us to ask the police to undertake a policing activity. It could be a range of things that could include interviewing somebody. This is part of an on-going process. They are now going to be going out routinely.

"I can't go into the detail as they are formal legal documents that go from our Crown Prosecution Service to the prosecuting authorities in Portugal. But clearly the investigative tempo is moving forward.

"Nobody has been arrested. We have not asked for anyone to be arrested. So far no one has been interviewed as a witness. But we are progressing with the investigation and the work we are asking the Portuguese to undertake.

"We are still at the point of gathering evidence. Andy Redwood is over there again. There is a senior officer in the Portuguese police who is working with us. Andy goes regularly to meet him to ensure the work is undertaken the way we want. Investigative activity is increasing."

Mr Hewitt admitted the letter sending, which started in July, created a delay but he said it was a judicial process the force had to stick to. "At the moment we are not in a formal joint investigation in a legal sense," he said. "We are working with the Portuguese. They are doing the inquiries on our behalf."

Analysis of the three burglars' mobiles showed they made an unusually high number of calls to each other in the hours that followed Madeleine's disappearance.

Police believe the suspects, including at least one Portuguese man, had already carried out a previous raid in the resort, disturbing a child.

That child's parents, who had been drinking outside the property, rushed inside to find the intruders had fled. During their original investigation, Portuguese police attached no significance to the break-in, which happened a few days before Madeleine vanished.

A spokesman for her parents Kate and Gerry McCann described the sending of the police letters as "a significant development".

Police chiefs link three burglars to Maddie disappearance, 14 February 2014
Police chiefs link three burglars to Maddie disappearance Daily Star

BRITISH detectives hunting Madeleine McCann have urged Portuguese police to catch three "prime suspect" burglars.

By Jerry Lawton / Published 14th February 2014

HUNT: Madeleine McCann went missing in May 2007 while she and her family were on holiday in Portugal [AP]

Scotland Yard officers want to quiz the trio after spending months probing the thieves' mobile phone data.

It shows the raiders were close to the holiday apartment at Praia da Luz where Maddie, then three, was abducted in May 2007.

The burglary gang, who were operating in the Algarve resort in the days up to Madeleine's disappearance, are now the main focus of the Scotland Yard investigation.

But the probe has been delayed by international red tape. Every time officers want to follow up a new lead they have to ask the Crown Prosecution Service to write to their Portuguese counterparts, who then pass the request to local police.

Yesterday it was revealed a third letter has been sent asking for ­further inquiries into the raiders who are still at large.

Met Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt told the Daily Star: "The investigative tempo is moving forward. Investigative activity is increasing."

Last night Det Chief Insp Andy Redwood, who is heading the UK hunt for Madeleine, was in Portugal meeting senior officers.

A spokesman for Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry, 45, from Rothley, Leics, said sending the letters was a significant development.

--------------

Maddie cops: Catch the three burglars Daily Star (paper edition)

 
Maddie cops: Catch the three burglars Daily Star (paper edition)

 

[Text of paper edition same as online edition]

-------------------

Daily Star says..

McCanns' new hope

 
Daily Star Says..

Friday, February 14, 2014

IT'S been nearly seven years since Madeleine McCann went missing.

And nearly seven years of pain and heartache for her parents Kate and Gerry.

But now there is new hope.

Scotland Yard say the investigation is stepping up a gear.

The search is on for three "prime suspect" burglars operating in the area where Maddie disappeared in 2007.

Detectives are now convinced the raiders hold the clues to finally finding the missing girl.

But it's up to the Portuguese police to pull their weight and help snare them.

It's the least that Kate and Gerry deserve.

They have never stopped fighting for the truth.

There have been so many cruel false dawns.

Let's hope the crucial breakthrough comes soon.

Madeleine McCann case is 'moving forward' top officer says amid reports of police closing in on three prime suspects, 14 February 2014
Madeleine McCann case is 'moving forward' top officer says amid reports of police closing in on three prime suspects Daily Mail
  • Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt says 'tempo' of investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann is 'moving forward'
  • British detectives have issued third request for help to Portuguese police
  • Senior officer has travelled to Portugal this week to meet authorities
  • Comes amid reports that police are closing in on three 'prime suspects'
  • Data suggests a burglary gang was operating near time of disappearance
  • Madeleine vanished from family's apartment in Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007
  • Investigation was reopened by Portuguese authorities in October last year
By SOPHIE JANE EVANS
PUBLISHED: 09:54, 14 February 2014 | UPDATED: 11:33, 14 February 2014

The Scotland Yard investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann is 'moving forward', a top officer has revealed.

British detectives have issued a new request for help to their Portuguese counterparts in a bid to discover what happened to the youngster.

It comes amid reports that police are closing in on three 'prime suspects' believed to have been involved in the toddler's disappearance.

 
'Moving forward': British detectives have issued a new request for help to their Portuguese counterparts in a bid to discover what happened to Madeleine McCann (pictured), who went missing in Praia da Luz in May 2007

 

'Moving forward': British detectives have issued a new request for help to their Portuguese counterparts in a bid to discover what happened to Madeleine McCann (pictured), who went missing in Praia da Luz in May 2007

--------------------

 
Left, Madeleine was nearly four years old when she disappeared

 
Inquiry: Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt, right, said Scotland Yard had sent a third international letter of request to Portuguese officials.

 

Inquiry: Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt, right, said Scotland Yard had sent a third international letter of request to Portuguese officials. Left, Madeleine was nearly four years old when she disappeared

--------------------

Today, Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt, who is overseeing the operation, said police had sent a third international letter of request to Portuguese officials.

'Clearly the investigative tempo is moving forward as we're progressing the investigation and the work that we're asking the Portuguese to undertake for us,' he said.

'We sent a further detailed letter of request which went out from the Crown Prosecution Service on Friday.

'This is part of an ongoing process. We are carrying on our liaison at all levels.'

 
Emotional: Kate and Gerry McCann give a press conference about their daughter following her disappearance

 

Emotional: Kate and Gerry McCann give a press conference about their daughter following her disappearance

-----------------

 
Scene: Madeleine went missing from the Ocean Club (pictured) as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant

 

Scene: Madeleine went missing from the Ocean Club (pictured) as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant

--------------

 
Leads: It comes amid reports that police are closing in on three 'prime suspects' believed to be involved in the toddler's disappearance. Data analysis suggests a burglary gang had been operating nearby at the time

 
Leads: It comes amid reports that police are closing in on three 'prime suspects' believed to be involved in the toddler's disappearance. Data analysis suggests a burglary gang had been operating nearby at the time

 

Leads: It comes amid reports that police are closing in on three 'prime suspects' believed to be involved in the toddler's disappearance. Data analysis suggests a burglary gang had been operating nearby at the time

----------------------

He added that further letters of request would be sent to Portugal on a 'routine' basis as the probe gathers pace.

Meanwhile, Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood, who is leading the hunt for Madeleine, has travelled to Portugal this week to meet senior officers in the Algarve.

Last month, three prime suspects in Madeleine's disappearance were identified by Scotland Yard officers.

Analysis of mobile phone data suggested a burglary gang was operating very near to where she vanished in Portugal in May 2007.

 
'Routine' process: Scotland Yard has stressed that the third request for help is a routine part of the inquiry

 

'Routine' process: Scotland Yard has stressed that the third request for help is a routine part of the inquiry

---------------------

 
Meeting: Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood (pictured), who is leading the hunt for Madeleine, has travelled to Portugal this week to meet senior officers in the Algarve

Meeting: Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood (pictured), who is leading the hunt for Madeleine, has travelled to Portugal this week to meet senior officers in the Algarve

-------------------

The three men made an unusually high number of calls to each other in the hours after Madeleine was reported missing from her holiday flat.

Police are believed to be closing in on the thieves, including at least one Portuguese man, who had already carried out one raid in the resort of Praia da Luz, according to the Daily Express.

However, the Met Police has refused to comment on the reports - with Mr Hewitt claiming no requests for interviews or arrests have been made so far.

Madeleine, who was then nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on May 3, 2007, as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

British detectives launched a fresh investigation into the youngster's disappearance in July last year - two years into a review of the case - and made renewed appeals on television in the UK, the Netherlands and Germany.

After shelving their inquiry into Madeleine's disappearance in 2008, Portuguese authorities said last October that a review had uncovered enough new information to justify reopening it.

Today, Scotland Yard stressed that the third international letter of request is a routine part of the inquiry - and would not reveal what it said.

Letters of request are typically used to ask the Portuguese police to carry out certain pieces of work on the British force's behalf.

A spokesman for Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, told the newspaper that the latest request for help was 'a significant development' in the case.

Chinese whispers, 14 February 2014
Chinese whispers

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt

By Nigel Moore
14 February 2014 11:30am


What the Evening Standard reports:

'Mr Hewitt said so far the Yard had not asked the Portugese (sic) authorities to interview or arrest any suspects.'

What the Press Association reports:

'Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt said that so far no requests to carry out interviews or arrests had been made.'

What the Daily Mirror reports:

'He said no requests for interviews or arrests have been made so far.'

What the Daily Mail reports:

'However, the Met Police has refused to comment on the reports - with Mr Hewitt claiming no requests for interviews or arrests have been made so far.'

What Martin Hewitt actually said (courtesy of Daily Express):

"Nobody has been arrested. We have not asked for anyone to be arrested. So far no one has been interviewed as a witness."

- In other words, Mr Hewitt does not rule out the possibility that interview requests have been made. He only clarifies that "so far" no interviews have taken place.

This is consistent with the report in Jornal de Notícias, which states that the second letter of request - seemingly a request to interview certain people - has yet to be carried out.

English pressure on the PJ for the "Maddie" case, 15 February 2014
English pressure on the PJ for the "Maddie" case Correio da Manhã

Three English police officers were in the Algarve

Scotland Yard have sent a third letter of request in spite of the fact that the second letter has not yet arrived with the PJ.

By: Rui Pando Gomes
15 February 2014, 19h51
With thanks to Ines for translation

In the space of three weeks, the British investigators have been in the Algarve twice for meetings described as routine

In spite of the fact that the PJ has still not complied with any of the inquiries requested in the second letter of request sent to the Portuguese authorities, within the scope of the investigation into the Maddie case, Scotland Yard has now announced that it will send a third legal request, with more inquiries of alleged suspects.

After another visit by the English police, for a routine meeting, the day before yesterday, as reported by CM, this new request for help is seen as a sign of "pressure" on the Portuguese police.

According to findings by CM, the second letter of request has still not officially arrived with the Faro PJ police officers.

"The English police can make a request for an understanding. The Public Ministry, under Portuguese law, could refuse to authorise," a legal source told CM.

According to the English press, the commissionaire Martin Hewitt, who is coordinating the British investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann – which occurred on 3rd May 2007, in Praia da Luz – "a letter with detailed requests was sent" on Friday, a legal action that is "part of an on-going process". He added that they "are procedures to enable the investigation to continue successfully".

Maddie cops hunt No1 suspect's gang, 17 February 2014
Maddie cops hunt No1 suspect's gang Daily Mirror (paper edition)

 
Daily Mirror, 17 February 2014

 

EXCLUSIVE

Junkie's widow reveals she was quizzed over his links to crooks at kidnap resort

BY DAVID COLLINS
in Praia da Luz
Monday, 17 February 2014


THE widow of the prime Madeleine McCann suspect has been quizzed over three of his accomplices.

Luisa Rodrigues was grilled about the crooked trio linked to burglar and junkie Euclides Monteiro, who died in a tractor accident in 2009.

A police source in Portugal said: "We know a burglary gang was in the area at the time and we are trying to trace Monteiro's associates."

FULL STORY: PAGE 5


---------------------

Madeleine McCann cops quiz prime suspect's widow - four years after his death
Daily Mirror

By David Collins | Feb 17, 2014 00:00

Luisa Rodrigues was grilled by Portuguese officers as mobile phone records pinpointed Euclides Lopes Monteiro at the scene on the night she was snatched

Case continues: Maddie vanished in 2007

 

Case continues: Maddie vanished in 2007

The widow of the prime suspect in the Madeleine McCann case has told how she was stunned when police arrived to quiz her – four years after his death.

Luisa Rodrigues was grilled by Portuguese officers as mobile phone records pinpointed Euclides Lopes Monteiro at the scene on the night three-year-old Madeleine was snatched.

The 40-year-old ex-jailbird and heroin junkie remains a key part of the inquiry, even though he died in a tractor accident in 2009 – two years after the abduction.

And yesterday it emerged that British cold-case detectives are anxious to trace three of his known associates who are believed to have carried out burglaries in the Praia da Luz area around the time of the youngster's disappearance on May 3, 2007.

Speaking for the first time about her interrogation, Luisa, 40, admitted she was shocked when police contacted her at her home in Lagos, just a 15-minute drive from Praia da Luz.

She said: "Two officers phoned me out of the blue and said they were in town and wanted to see me.

"They wouldn't tell me what it was over the phone but when I reached the cafe where we'd arranged to meet, they told me they were investigating Euclides over Madeleine McCann.

"They said they suspected him because he used to work at the Ocean Club complex where the McCanns were staying and because they had tracked the signal from his mobile phone to the area where Madeleine disappeared the night she vanished.

"I was speechless. I kept repeating Euclides was innocent but they said it was not for me to say."

Quizzed: Monteiro's widow Luisa

 

Quizzed: Monteiro's widow Luisa

She said the officers wanted to know about his criminal past – he served time for burglary – his friends and his drug habit.

She added: "They asked me many questions, including where we had lived as a couple, where Euclides had worked over the years, what he was like as a person and if he had problems with drink and drugs.

"They also asked where he was the night Madeleine disappeared and if I had noticed any changes in him afterwards.

"It's a long time ago, but I'm sure he would have been at home watching TV. That's what he always did after work.

"They questioned me for about an hour. The next day I took them the work contracts I found for Euclides at home and details of our joint bank account which they also asked for.

"They never explained why they had come to ­question me more than six years after Madeleine disappeared."

Junkie: Ex-jailbird Monteiro

 

Junkie: Ex-jailbird Monteiro

Luisa admitted that 6ft 2in Euclides had a problem with heroin and cocaine which he battled on and off his whole life.

She said: "When he was younger he broke into houses and served five years in prison. So I can understand why he's become a suspect, even if I don't believe he could have had anything to do with it."

Luisa, the daughter of a construction firm boss, started dating the father of her 11-year-son when she was 16.

She said she was aware of his ­problems, but he had turned over a new leaf – and believes the police are simply trying to find a scapegoat.

She insisted: "I know Euclides didn't take Madeleine. He came out of prison a changed man. He had made an honest life for himself and was a good and caring father and companion.

"If I thought he had anything to do with Madeleine's disappearance I would have been the first to turn him in.

"I wouldn't have been able to live with myself for keeping something like that secret. I know he is innocent."

Missing: Maddie

Missing: Maddie

Monteiro, who moved to Portugal as a child from Cape Verde off West Africa, first emerged as a suspect last year.

He was sacked from the Ocean Club a year before Madeleine vanished after being accused of theft while working at the Millennium restaurant.

But Luisa, who works for a local tourist firm, said: "I know in my heart he is innocent. It's very easy to blame someone who can't defend themselves any more.

"My husband was no angel but he would never be capable of committing such a terrible crime."

British officers have asked their Portuguese counterparts to question three ex-employees of the Ocean Club complex, examine their bank accounts and search their homes.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt, who is leading the Scotland Yard probe, said: "Clearly the tempo of the investigation is accelerating."

Daily Mirror, paper edition, page 5: 'My life with Maddie suspect', 17 February 2014

Daily Mirror, paper edition, page 5: 'My life with Maddie suspect', 17 February 2014

Maddie: Cops at war, 18 February 2014
Maddie: Cops at war Daily Star (paper edition)

 
Daily Star, 18 Ffebruary 2014

 

Porto police bungling hunt, say Brit tecs

Tuesday, February 18, 2004

FRUSTRATED British police fear Portuguese officers are chasing the wrong suspect in the hunt for missing Madeleine McCann.

And they warn that an "us against them" attitude could wreck the search.

A source close to the UK inquiry told the Daily Star: "This is not a game. A little girl's life may be at stake."

Full story: Page 7

-------------

Portuguese police are bungling the hunt for Madeleine McCann, say Brit detectives
Daily Star

FRUSTRATED British police fear Portuguese officers are chasing the wrong lead in the hunt for Madeleine McCann.

By Jerry Lawton / Published 18th February 2014

HUNT: Madeleine McCann went missing from a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in May 2007 [PA]

Top brass are desperate to liaise with their foreign colleagues after it emerged they are chasing different suspects.

UK detectives are worried an "us against them" scenario is developing, and it could hinder attempts to find the missing girl.

British investigators believe the three-year-old was snatched after disturbing burglars who broke into her parents' holiday apartment.

And their chief suspects are a three-strong gang who made a high number of mobile calls nearby on the night Maddie vanished.

But Portuguese detectives are concentrating their efforts on a theory that a now-dead heroin addict abducted Madeleine.

They believe Euclides Monteiro snatched her in a twisted act of revenge against the Ocean Club holiday resort after he had been sacked from a job there the year before.

They have questioned his widow Luisa after mobile phone analysis placed his handset near the McCanns' apartment in the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz that night in May, 2007.

Monteiro, 40, was killed in a tractor accident four years ago.

Police from both nations launched separate hunts for Madeleine last year after each spent two years reviewing files from the original case, shelved as an unsolved mystery in 2008.

Though each force claims to have unearthed new leads, their inquiries are heading in different directions.

A source close to the UK inquiry said: "If we don't form a joint investigation task force, any advantages in terms of pooling resources and information may be lost.

"We can't have an 'us against them' scenario developing. This is not a game. A little girl's life may be at stake."

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe has called on the UK and Portuguese governments to form a joint international task force to conduct a single united inquiry.

He said the UK and Portuguese probes were "two separate inquiries with a different focus".

And he added: "It's important that we work together on what is clearly a common problem."

Yesterday Luisa Rodrigues, 40, said she was sure her husband did not snatch Madeleine. She said when Portuguese detectives told her he was their No 1 suspect, she was "speechless".

She added: "They said they suspected him because he used to work at the Ocean Club complex and because they had tracked the signal from his mobile.

"But I'm sure he would have been at home watching TV. That's what he always did after work."

Daily Star, paper edition, page 7: 'Maddie: Porto cops on wrong scent says Met', 18 February 2014

Daily Star, paper edition, page 7: 'Maddie: Porto cops on wrong scent says Met', 18 February 2014

Kate and Gerry McCann fear police rifts will ruin Maddie investigation, 20 February 2014
Kate and Gerry McCann fear police rifts will ruin Maddie investigation Daily Star

MADELEINE McCann's parents want British and Portuguese police to join forces.

By Jerry Lawton / Published 20th February 2014

FEAR: The McCanns want the Portuguese and British police to work together [GETTY]

They fear the two teams are chasing different leads.

UK detectives believe Maddie, left, was snatched by burglars in Praia da Luz in May 2007.

But the Portuguese are investigating a dead heroin addict.

Last night a friend of Madeleine's parents said they were worried the "us against them" conflict was hindering investigations.

The McCanns' spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: "They will not comment on any aspect of Operation Grange while it is ongoing."

Red tape hampering search for Madeleine McCann, 20 February 2014
Red tape hampering search for Madeleine McCann Daily Express

THE parents of Madeleine McCann want police to form a joint British and Portuguese task-force to find their daughter.

By: David Pilditch
Published: Thu, February 20, 2014

Missing Madeleine McCann was abducted from her parents holiday apartment in 2007 [PA]

The couple are said to be frustrated that the level of co-operation between the two forces "isn't as it should be".

It comes amid growing concerns that investigators are conducting separate inquiries instead of pooling resources.

Last night a friend of the couple said they were worried that a potential conflict will hinder the search for Madeleine, abducted in May 2007.

The source said: "It is obvious that the co-operation between Britain and Portugal isn't as it should be.

"There are two police inquiries going on in two different countries trying to find out what happened to Madeleine and you would want and hope that they would work together."

British investigators are focusing on three local burglars blamed for a string of break-ins at the Algarve holiday resort of Praia da Luz, where Madeleine was staying with her family. In what could be a breakthrough, Scotland Yard honed in on the three men after a painstaking trawl through mobile phone records.

It is understood there was significant phone traffic between them around the time Madeleine, then aged three, vanished.

Portugal's Policia Judiciaria are concentrating their efforts on a theory that a sacked resort worker abducted Madeleine. Heroin addict Euclides Monteiro, 40, was killed in a tractor accident four years ago, but mobile phone analysis placed his handset near the McCanns' apartment on the night Madeleine disappeared.

There have also been concerns Scotland Yard's Operation Grange investigation has been caught up in red tape.

British police have to send international letters of request to Portugal via the Crown Prosecution Service each time they want officers to carry out investigative work on their behalf.

Last night the source close to the McCanns said: "Kate and Gerry hope, for the sake of Madeleine, the two countries' forces can work together in a joint investigation."

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe has also called for senior detectives from both countries to conduct a single inquiry.

Last night the McCanns' spokesman said: "Kate and Gerry remain very pleased with the work Scotland Yard continue to do in the search for Madeleine."

The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, discusses progress in the Madeleine McCann case, 20 February 2014
The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, discusses progress in the Madeleine McCann case BBC Radio 5 live

The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, discusses progress in the Madeleine McCann case, 20 February 2014

First broadcast: Thursday 20 February 2014

Transcript

By Nigel Moore

Nicky Campbell: Errm... Adeal in London... no, I tell you what, we'll go to Christine in Cardiff. Brief points please because there's only eight minutes left, so make your questions as... as, errr... well edited as you can. Hi, Christine.

Christine: (phone in) Good morning. Good morning, Sir Bernard.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Good morning, Christine.

Christine: I'd like to ask you, errr... on the progress of Operation Grange.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Right, we have a lots of Op... Operations, so you're going to have...

Nicky Campbell: Operation Grange, just...?

Christine: Operation Grange.

Nicky Campbell: Which is?

Christine: It's the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Ahh, right, thank you for helping...

Christine: That's okay.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: ...but we do have a lot of Operations in London, so I'm sorry if I didn't recognise it immediately.

Nicky Campbell: The Portuguese police really mess... really messed up, didn't they?

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Yes. [spoken in acknowledgment of the reference to the 'Portuguese police' and before Nicky Campbell has finished his sentence]

Christine: Yes... no [seemingly spoken in echo of Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe's 'yes' but then realises it could be misconstrued and makes an attempt to change it to 'no'. See her next comment]

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Errm... I'm not going to respond to Nicky's comments.

Christine:
(in background) Did they Nicky?

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: I'm just going to... Let me just... let me just help. Where we are at the moment: We've sent three letters of request for international assistance to the Portuguese, errr... Judiciary, because that's the way their system works, and also with the police - we are working closely with them. Errm... obviously the Portuguese police have got a line of inquiry which is different to the Metropolitan Police's but we're working together to try and resolve that. Errm... we're trying our best to keep the family informed and I think in the middle of all this, quite often their torment gets lost. Have they lost a child or, errr... by being murdered or... sadly... or have they lost a child by someone else stealing them.

Nicky Campbell: Awful.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Either way, errr... they've got that terrible uncertainty, so we're all trying our best to help resolve that. We...

Nicky Campbell: Do you have suspects?

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Errr... yes, we've said very clearly that, you know, we've got lines of inquiry that, errm... are different to the Portuguese police and we're working with them to try and resolve that and I'm only going to... you know, that comment you made at the beginning, about, you know, what they did or didn't do. We've got to work together on this and I don't mean that as a naïve thing; I just think, generally. We've generally got to work together. We can't police Portugal, they can't do everything over here; we must work together. So, we're insist... you know, we really can work in genuine partnership on this. We're making some progress, errm... let's see how it comes over the next few months.

Nicky Campbell: If you'd been involved at the outset, do you think we might have got further with this investigation?

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Errr... I think that's a bit unf... that would be unfair. I mean there's been inquiries in, errm... in the UK, where we know that the police could have done better. I think to be too judgmental in these cases is... is wrong and I wasn't there and I'm not going to judge them. The main thing we're all committed to is trying to find that little girl.

Nicky Campbell: And you have lines of inquiry, you have 'suspects' lines of inquiry; you have names.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: That's right.

Nicky Campbell: Errm... and I appreciate how you can't, at this stage, go any further, errr... and have you spoken to those people?

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe: Errm... I'm not going to go any further, really. Because that's what you just said you didn't want!

Nicky Campbell: I'm sure when you were interviewing people in that... in that little room you'd try and sneak one in like that, Sir Bernard. I bet you have in your time.

Adeal's in London...

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe on BBC 5 Live, 20 February 2014
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe on BBC 5 Live Twitter - Jerry Lawton

Jerry Lawton is the Daily Star chief crime reporter

 
Jerry Lawton tweets, 20 February 2014

Text version of above:

Jerry Lawton@JerryLawton
10:09 AM - 20 Feb 14
Met police comm Bernard Hogan-Howe on @bbc5live: "working towards resolving" different leads pursued by UK & Portuguese cops re #McCann case

Jerry Lawton@JerryLawton
10:15 AM - 20 Feb 14
Hogan-Howe tells @bbc5live UK cops making "some progress" towards "genuine partnership" with Portuguese police in Madeleine #McCann case

Jerry Lawton@JerryLawton
10:17 AM - 20 Feb 14
Hogan-Howe tells @bbc5live he "will not judge" quality of original Portuguese inquiry into Madeleine #McCann disappearance

Jerry Lawton@JerryLawton
10:19 AM - 20 Feb 14
Hogan-Howe tells @bbc5live UK police have "names" of people they suspect were involved in Madeleine #McCann disappearance

Met police 'making progress in Maddie case,' says Hogan-Howe, 20 February 2014
Met police 'making progress in Maddie case,' says Hogan-Howe Evening Standard

Published: 20 February 2014
Updated: 12:12, 20 February 2014


Detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are "making some progress" the head of Scotland Yard said today.

Met chief Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said the Yard's inquiry had identified suspects. His comments came after it was revealed that Met officers have sent a new request for assistance to the Portuguese.

Sir Bernard told a BBC radio station that Portugese and British police had different lines of inquiry and were working to resolve this. Madeleine was three when she vanished during a family holiday in Praia da Luz in May 2007.

Met chief confirms he DOES have names of Maddy suspects, 20 February 2014
Met chief confirms he DOES have names of Maddy suspects Daily Express

THE Metropolitan Police Commissioner has confirmed Scotland Yard does have names of suspects in the Madeleine McCann case.

By: Benjamin Russell
Published: Thu, February 20, 2014

Bernard Hogan-Howe said he had names for suspects in the case [GETTY]

Speaking on Radio 5 Live, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said police had "lines of inquiry" that they were looking into.

When asked by host Nicky Campbell whether he had names for the suspects, he replied: "That's right", but refused to comment further.

He said: "Obviously the Portuguese police have got lines of inquiry that are different to the Metropolitan Police but we're working together to try and resolve that."

He said it would be "unfair" to say whether he thought the operation would have been more successful if it had been led by British officers from the start.

He added: "There have been inquiries in the UK where we know the police could have done better.

Madeleine went missing in 2007 [EPA]

"I think to be too judgemental in these cases is wrong. I wasn't there and I'm not going to judge them.

"The main thing is we are all committed to finding that little girl."

He also said the suffering of the McCanns was often overrun by the details of the case.

He said: "We are trying our best to keep the family informed. I think in the middle of all this, quite often their torment gets lost."

Twitter exchanges with Nicky Campbell, 20 February 2014
Twitter exchanges with Nicky Campbell Twitter - Nicky Campbell

 
Nicky Campbell tweets, 20 February 2014

 
Nicky Campbell tweets, 20 February 2014

Text version of above:

Gareth Bouch@garethbouch
6:24 PM - 20 Feb 14
@NickyAACampbell Here's 11,200+ pages that says the Portuguese investigation WASN'T rubbish.
Actual case files:
mccannpjfiles.co.uk

Nicky Campbell@NickyAACampbell
6:25 AM - 20 Feb 14
@garethbouch yes he didn't bite did he

------------------

cherry berry@cosyring
6:24 PM - 20 Feb 14
@NickyAACampbell http://www.mccannpjfiles.co.uk/PJ/TRANSLATIONS.htm … http://www.mccannfiles.com/ #mccann

Babalou
@B_balou
6:35 AM - 20 Feb 14
@cosyring Don't think ------>>> @NickyAACampbell has read those judging by his despicable comment that the PJ really messed #mccann case up.

Nicky Campbell@NickyAACampbell
6:36 AM - 20 Feb 14
@B_balou it was a provoking question to BHH not an opinion ya numpty.

Britain's most senior police officer confirms the Met has the names of three suspects in Madeleine McCann case and is 'closing in', 20 February 2014
Britain's most senior police officer confirms the Met has the names of three suspects in Madeleine McCann case and is 'closing in' Daily Mail
  • Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said there has been 'progress' in McCann case
  • Told BBC's Radio 5 Live they have different questions to Portuguese police
  • Said that his officers had names of suspects involved in case
  • Declined to say when the suspects would be quizzed about Madeleine
By STEVEN WRIGHT
PUBLISHED: 18:59, 20 February 2014 | UPDATED: 19:53, 20 February 2014

Progress: Scotland Yard boss Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe has admitted that there has been movements in the McCann case, suggesting that officers are closing in on the person that abducted her

 

Britain's most senior police officer has suggested his officers are closing in on the people who abducted Madeleine McCann.

Scotland Yard boss Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe admitted his officers have the names of suspects and that 'some progress' is being made in the inquiry.

But he declined to be drawn on when the suspects would be quizzed over her disappearance in Portugal seven years ago.

He told BBC's Radio 5 Live: 'We have sent three letters of request for international assistance to the Portuguese judiciary, because that is the way their system works.

'We have got lines of inquiry which are different to the Portuguese Police’s and we are working with them to try to resolve that.

'We are making some progress.'

Asked by presenter Nicky Campbell whether his officers had the names of suspects, he replied: 'That is correct'.

He declined to comment further.

Sir Bernard's comments came after the Mail revealed exclusively last month that the Met has identified three burglars as prime suspects for Madeleine's disappearance.

Analysis of mobile phone data suggests the men were close to the scene of her abduction, at the time she went missing, and that they were in close contact with each other in the hours that followed.

Following our revelations, Portuguese newspapers reported that three former Ocean Club workers are Scotland Yard's prime suspects over her disappearance.

Details of the men's alleged links to the Mark Warner-run resort in the Algarve, where Maddie vanished from in 2007, were revealed in a number of Portuguese newspapers with close links to local police.

They were disclosed two days after Portuguese police had a high-level meeting with a visiting Scotland Yard delegation late last month.

At the meeting, Met detectives are reported to have requested bank details of the men, who are thought to have carried out a series of break-ins at the Ocean Club in the run up to Maddie's disappearance.

Although local media reported the men had been employed at the Ocean Club complex in Praia da Luz, it was not clear whether they were working there at the time Madeleine went missing in May 2007.

Nor was it clear whether they were directly employed by Mark Warner, or through a contractor.

Madeleine McCann went missing in 2007, and local media have reported that certain people of interest in the case had links to where she vanished from
Madeleine McCann went missing in 2007, and local media have reported that certain people of interest in the case had links to where she vanished from

--------------
Madeleine, who was then nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve on May 3 2007 as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

It is now known that between January and May 2007 there had been a four-fold increase in the number of burglaries in the area.

Madeleine: British police have names of new suspects, 21 February 2014
Madeleine: British police have names of new suspects Daily Express (paper edition)

 
Daily Express, 21 February 2014

 

SEE PAGE 5

-------------------------

British police have names of suspects in Madeleine McCann case Daily Express

DETECTIVES have named suspects in the Madeleine McCann investigation, Britain's top policeman revealed yesterday.

By: John Twomey
Published: Fri, February 21, 2014

Madeleine McCann went missing from her family's holiday resort apartment in Praia da Luz in May 2007 [PA]

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe also disclosed his officers and Portuguese police are moving towards a joint investigation team.

On BBC Radio 5 Live, Sir Bernard said: "We can't police Portugal and they can't do anything here. So we must work together."

It has been reported that Madeleine's parents are frustrated at the slow progress towards a joint inquiry.

Madeleine, who was three at the time, vanished from a holiday apartment in Praia de Luz on the Algarve in May 2007.

Since May 2011, a special squad of Scotland Yard detectives have investigated.

It is understood the squad has identified a number of suspects, including three burglars operating in the area at the time.

Radio presenter Nicky Campbell asked: "You have lines of inquiry, suspects, names?" Sir Bernard replied: "That's right."

Authorities in London and Lisbon are working to set up a joint squad to take advantage of European law to speed up cross-border inquiries.

Top cop Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe says names of Maddie kidnappers are known, 21 February 2014
Top cop Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe says names of Maddie kidnappers are known Daily Star

POLICE believe they know the names of Madeleine McCann's kidnappers.

By Jerry Lawton / Published 21st February 2014

SEARCH: Kate and Gerry McCann [AP]

Britain's top policeman Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe revealed the breakthrough on a radio phone-in show yesterday.

Radio Five host Nicky Campbell, 52, asked: "And you have lines of inquiry, you have suspects, you have names?"

Sir Bernard, 56, replied: "That's right." Asked if detectives had "spoken to those people" the Met chief said: "I'm not going to go any further."

But he said the investigation was being hampered because Portuguese police were pursuing a different line of inquiry.

He repeated his call for both forces to unite for the sake of Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry, both 45.

The police chief said: "In the middle of all this quite often their torment gets lost.

"Have they lost a child by being murdered, sadly, or have they lost a child by someone else stealing them? Either way they have got that terrible uncertainty."

UK detectives are hunting a three-strong burglary gang they suspect snatched Madeleine in the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz seven years ago.

But Portuguese police suspect a heroin addict who has since died.

Sir Bernard added: "We have said ­clearly that we have got lines of inquiry that are different to the Portuguese police and we are working with them to try and resolve that. We really can work in genuine partnership on this.

"We're making some progress. Let's see how it comes over the next few months."

He refused to criticise the original Portuguese investigation which was shelved as unsolved in 2008.

"No matter what they did or didn't do we have got to work together on this," he said. "We can't police Portugal. They can't do everything over here."

Maddie: McCanns and Scotland Yard dissatisfied with the work of the PJ, 21 February 2014
Maddie: McCanns and Scotland Yard dissatisfied with the work of the PJ Notícias Ao Minuto

The case is the same, but the targets are different. Whilst the PJ investigated a death within the scope of the Maddie case, Scotland Yard is busy identifying three burglars. This lack of coordination and link between the two authorities, according to Diário de Notícias, has displeased the parents of Madeleine McCann.

Kate and Gerry McCann

11:03 - 21 February 2014 | By Notícias Ao Minuto

Kate and Jerry McCann have expressed their displeasure about the cooperation, or lack thereof, between the Portuguese and British police. The couple accused the two authorities of seeking different targets in an investigation that should be undertaken in conjunction.

However, it is not only the McCanns who are unhappy. Scotland Yard itself has criticized the Portuguese operations, which has focused its investigation on a former employee of the Ocean Club who, in the mean time, has died. Furthermore, the British police, writes Diário de Notícias, complain of excessive bureaucracy on the part of the Portuguese authorities.

An English police source confesses that there is not a "joint investigation" and that "this is not a game," since it concerns "the life of a child." However, he admits that the work of the two police forces are not following the same course.

At this time the PJ and the Public Ministry (MP) are investigating a former employee of the Ocean Club, who, in the mean time, died in a tractor accident. For its part, the British seek to identify three burglars who were in Praia da Luz on the night Maddie disappeared.

Maddie Case: The McCanns give orders to the Polícia Judiciária, 22 February 2014
Maddie Case: The McCanns give orders to the Polícia Judiciária Correio da Manhã

Tense relationship between English and Portuguese

Madeleine's parents suggest that the Portuguese police investigates together with the English.

By: Rrui Pando Gomes
22 February 2014, 09h05
With thanks to Astro for translation

There are two separate investigations into the disappearance of Madeleine

After the pressure from the English police, it's now the McCann couple's turn to criticise the investigation work of the Polícia Judiciária (PJ) as well as the cooperation between the British and the Portuguese authorities.

As CM had already reported, the relationship between the English police and the PJ started becoming tense when the Scotland Yard sent a third rogatory letter, at a time when the diligences from the second judiciary assistance request have not been carried out yet. CM knows that many of the diligences, including questioning, searches and the analysis of bank accounts, may not be authorised by the Public Ministry prosecutor.

The English police, that opened an investigation which is financed by the parents of Madeleine, who disappeared in the Algarve in May of 2007, asserts it already has the names of three suspects.

On the other hand, the PJ in Oporto, which leads the investigation that was reopened in Portugal, follows a line that is different from the one that the parents of the missing English child would like the most.

According to the English press, the McCann couple says that it is "frustrating" to see that the cooperation between both police forces is "not existing as it should". And they pressure for a joint investigation to be carried out.

Burglary files to aid hunt for Madeleine McCann, 23 February 2014
Burglary files to aid hunt for Madeleine McCann Sunday Express

A SECRET dossier on burglars on the Algarve in Portugal is being shown to Scotland Yard detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

By: James Murray and Tracey Kandohia
Published: Sun, February 23, 2014

Madeleine McCann's parents continue to hope that their daughter will be found [EPA]

Portuguese police have kept the confidential file for years following a spate of break-ins in and around Praia da Luz, the resort from where Madeleine disappeared when she was three in May 2007.

Children were abused during some burglaries.

A businesswoman renting villas in the area confirmed: "Police have a special file on burglars operating in the area. Most of them are Portuguese and Romanian gypsies.

"Burglars go anywhere and ­everywhere in Luz and normally break in during the middle of the night when you're asleep.

"Burglars come in and steal your stuff and sometimes you don't know about it until you wake up in the morning."

The woman, who does not wish to be named, said from her office in Lagos, four miles from Luz: "It's been going on for years, well before Madeleine disappeared. Police here are aware of the problem but the public aren't aware."

Yard detectives to whom the Portuguese break-ins dossier is being made available are reported to be focusing on three burglars who targeted people in Luz.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe disclosed last week how his officers and Portugal's Policia Judiciaria are moving towards a joint investigation team and have the names of suspects.

Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry McCann, of Rothley, Leicestershire, believe their daughter, who would now be aged 10, could still be alive.

Former GP Kate, 45, revealed in her book about Madeleine's abduction that she had discovered five cases of British children being sexually attacked in their beds while on holiday.

She wrote: "It broke my heart to read the terrible accounts of devastated parents and the experiences of their poor children.

"British tourists in holiday accommodation were being targeted. It is so hard not to scream from the rooftops about how these crimes appear to have been brushed under the carpet."

One British mother claims kidnappers may have tried to take her own young daughter just six weeks before Madeleine disappeared.

She claims that while she was staying at Montechoro, near Albufeira, 30 miles from Luz, a scruffy migrant from the former Soviet Union spiked her drink then tried to take her one-year-old blonde daughter to a getaway car.

The 30-year-old woman said: "It was terrifying, like something out of a film. I've given a statement to Scotland Yard and they are arranging to interview me again.

"I'll do anything I can to help. I can't be the only mum who has had a near-miss."

The mediatisation of Madeleine McCann, 23 February 2014
The mediatisation of Madeleine McCann The Conversation

23 February 2014, 3.40am GMT

Brian McNair

Brian McNair

Professor of Journalism, Media and Communication at Queensland University of Technology

Kate and Gerry McCann

 

EPA/Facundo Arrizabalaga

It is nearly seven years since a little blonde-haired British girl named Madeleine McCann disappeared from her bedroom in a holiday resort in Portugal. Madeleine, if she is alive, would be ten years old now, having spent the majority of her decade on earth separated from her family, parents Gerry and Kate McCann, and twin siblings Sean and Amelia.

What happened that night in the Algarve fishing village of Praia de Luz remains a mystery. Was Madeleine abducted while she slept, by a person or persons unknown, as her parents claim? Or, as the former head of the Portuguese investigating team alleges, did she die in apartment 5A of the Ocean Club complex, her body disposed of in an attempt to cover up negligence or worse?

Ongoing investigations by police teams in the United Kingdom and Portugal have failed to answer those questions, or to find evidence sufficiently compelling as to justify prosecutions in either country.

The case continues to be a focus of public, police and political attention as the seventh anniversary of Madeleine's disappearance approaches, and the trial of that same former investigator accused of libel by the McCanns comes to its conclusion in Lisbon on Tuesday. Ex-inspector Goncalo Amaral's book, The Truth Of The Lie, based on police work before the case was 'archived' due to lack of evidence, advances the theory of Madeleine's death – accidental or intentional - and hypothesises a staged abduction by the parents.

For this he is being sued for over one million euros in damages by the McCanns, who allege that his book derailed the search for their daughter when it was published in 2009. The closing statements and judge's verdict on the case are due this week in Lisbon.

My interest in this sad story is both personal and professional. In the northern summer of 2005 I took my holidays at the Ocean Club, staying in the apartment directly above 5A where the McCanns resided in May 2007. A friend of my parents owned the apartment, and my extended family rented it and two other units in the complex for two weeks in July that year: my parents in one, my sister and her family in another, myself, my wife and my brother in the apartment above 5a.

 
The beach at Praia. Brian McNair

 

The beach at Praia. Brian McNair

Two weeks is enough time to get to know the Ocean Club resort, and the surrounding village of Praia de Luz, quite well. I ate in the Tapas restaurant, drank in Kelly’s bar, went inside the beautiful church at the village centre; I walked on the beach, and the streets leading to it from the Ocean Club. So when the news of Madeleine McCann's disappearance broke on May 4 2007 it resonated and captured my attention like no other crime story I can remember.

Millions of people all over the world were similarly captivated, but my sense of proximity to the events gave me a specially good reason to follow the case. The fact that Gerry McCann was Glaswegian like me was another point of connection.

From my professional perspective as a media sociologist, the disappearance of Madeleine McCann was an early example of the dramatic impact of the rise of the internet and 24-hour news channels on how human tragedies of this kind are reported and understood by the public.

The mediatisation of 'Maddie', as she became known to many, was unprecedented. It involved professional public relations practitioners, including former senior UK government specialists, in highly organized media management, or 'crisis communication', as one of the agencies involved characterised its services.

It engaged the British public in discussion like no previous case, not because the crime was unique (though it was rare – the most recent case of suspected abduction by a stranger of a British child while on holiday overseas had been that of Ben Needham in 1991), but because the emergence of social media – Twitter launched in 2007, Facebook in 2004 - provided a new and powerful platform for public sharing of information, opinion and argument about an ongoing criminal investigation.

From early in the investigation the McCanns proactively used the internet to issue appeals and information about Madeleine to a global online public, as did the police. Scotland yard's Operation Grange, set up to investigate the crime in 2011, had its own hashtag and website.

The public used the internet to access, assess and discuss information about the case as it emerged, and to speculate on what had happened to the little girl. Their sources included a mass of official material produced by the police in both Portugal and the UK, digitized and made available online.

 
The church at Praia. Brian McNair

The church at Praia. Brian McNair

There were thousands of pages of transcripts of interviews and court testimony, detailed forensic reports, summaries of findings by investigating officers, court rulings such as that by the Portuguese Attorney General which formally 'archived' the Madeleine McCann investigation in 2009, all neatly categorized and searchable on sites such as www.mcannpjfiles.co.uk .

Never before in the history of the volatile relationship between crime, media and public had so many people had such easy access to so much primary official data relating to an unsolved, still active case.

By 2007 virtually all of the news media were online, operating around the clock with story updates, live feeds and real time coverage of events, commentary threads and links to research materials. The unfolding narrative of Madeleine McCann was covered as it was happening, which meant with glacial slowness, punctuated by bursts of police activity in the UK or Portugal. Seven years on, that remains the case.

There have been peaks and troughs in the level of media and public interest, corresponding to newsworthy developments such as the establishment of Operation Grange and the BBC Crimewatch 'reconstruction' of October 2013. The Lisbon libel trial of Goncalo Amaral has been such a catalyst, and its conclusion this week will drive the disappearance of Madeleine McCann back up the UK and Portuguese media and public agendas.

The tone and content of the coverage, and the public's response to it on social media, will be determined in large part by the Portuguese judge's verdict. If Amaral is found guilty, the McCanns account of what happened to their daughter will continue to set the news agenda. If it goes the other way, and Amaral is found not guilty of defaming the McCanns in his book, we can expect the world's media to report his hypothesis and the supporting evidence more thoroughly than has been the case up until now.

Madeleine police shown secret Portuguese dossier on spate of burglaries in the area where she went missing, 23 February 2014
Madeleine police shown secret Portuguese dossier on spate of burglaries in the area where she went missing Daily Mail
  • It is claimed that some children were abused during the thefts
  • A woman who lives in the region says the burglars are mainly gypsies
  • A mother says a man tried to take her baby six weeks before Madeleine disappeared
By SAM WEBB
PUBLISHED: 11:24, 23 February 2014 | UPDATED: 14:15, 23 February 2014

Disappearance: Madeleine was nearly four years old when she vanished from Praia da Luz. Police are now investigating whether burglars were involved

British police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann have been handed a confidential dossier on burglars in the Algarve by Portuguese officers.

They kept the secret file because of a rash of burglaries in and near Praia da Luz, the resort where Madeleine went missing in May 2007 when she was three.

Some children were abused during the burglaries.

A businesswoman who works in nearby Lagos said the file mainly contains information on Portuguese and Romanian gypsies who break in in the middle of the night.

'It's been going on for years, well before Madeleine disappeared, she told the Sunday Express.

'Police here are aware of the problem but the public aren't aware.'

Another mother claims kidnappers tried to abduct her baby girl after spiking her drink and trying to snatch the child while she was staying at Montechoro, 30 miles away from Luz.

She said: 'It was terrifying, like something out of a film.'

Britain's most senior police officer has suggested his officers are closing in on the people who abducted Madeleine McCann.

Scotland Yard boss Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe admitted his officers have the names of suspects and that 'some progress' is being made in the inquiry.

But he declined to be drawn on when the suspects would be quizzed over her disappearance in Portugal seven years ago.

 
Madeleine McCann went missing from her apartment in The Ocean Club in Praia Da Luz in 2007

 

Scene: Madeleine went missing from the Ocean Club (pictured) as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant

-------------------------

 
Missing: Madeleine McCann who vanished from her holiday resort in Praia da Luz in 2007 while her parents were having dinner

 
Missing: Madeleine McCann who vanished from her holiday resort in Praia da Luz in 2007 while her parents were having dinner

Missing: Madeleine McCann who vanished from her holiday resort in Praia da Luz in 2007 while her parents were having dinner

---------------------

He told BBC's Radio 5 Live: 'We have sent three letters of request for international assistance to the Portuguese judiciary, because that is the way their system works.

'We have got lines of inquiry which are different to the Portuguese Police's and we are working with them to try to resolve that.

'We are making some progress.'

Asked by presenter Nicky Campbell whether his officers had the names of suspects, he replied: 'That is correct'.

He declined to comment further.

Analysis of mobile phone data suggested a burglary gang was operating very near to where she vanished as her parents Kate and Gerry dined nearby.

Maddie cops: Amazing secret files, 24 February 2014
Maddie cops: Amazing secret files Daily Star (paper edition)

 
Daily Star, 24 February 2014

 

Clues to snatch mystery

EXCLUSIVE
by JERRY LAWTON

Monday, February 24, 2004

BRITISH police trying to solve the Madeleine McCann case were last night studying sensational new evidence.

Detectives have been handed a set of secret files giving them new hope that they can finally solve the mystery.

Full story: Page 7

-------------------

Hope as cops given vital Maddie clues Daily Star
(paper edition, page 7)

Portuguese hand burglaries dossier to the Met

by JERRY LAWTON
Chief Crime Correspondent

 
Hope as cops given vital Maddie clues Daily Star (paper edition, page 7)

 

[Text of article as per online version below]

-----------------

Hope for Madeleine McCann case as cops are given vital clues
Daily Star

A SECRET dossier on burglars who operate near where Madeleine McCann vanished has been handed to police.

By Jerry Lawton / Published 24th February 2014

VANISHED: Madeleine McCann [PA]

The file is understood to catalogue a spate of break-ins in and around the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz.

Portuguese police believe it may hold the clue that will provide a breakthrough in the case.

And they have handed the file to Met investigators in the hope their new inquiry may finally crack the case.

The dossier is full of details about burglaries and break-ins just before the three-year-old disappeared in 2007.

Many were committed by gypsies, according to locals.

One 30-year-old Brit mum claims a scruffy migrant from the former Soviet Union tried to snatch her one-year-old blonde daughter from her holiday apartment 30 miles away in Montechoro six weeks before Madeleine vanished.

She has given a statement to Scotland Yard detectives and is waiting to be interviewed again.

"I'll do anything I can to help," she said.

"I can't be the only mum who has had a near-miss."

Locals claim the burglary file had been kept confidential to avoid scaring off tourists.

But Portuguese detectives are now said to have shared it with Met officers who are convinced Madeleine was kidnapped after disturbing raiders.

Last week Met Police commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said his officers know the names of their prime suspects.

Mobile phone data analysis has placed three possible intruders near the apartment around the key time.

Sir Bernard, 56, admitted the probe was being hampered because Portuguese police were pursuing a different line of inquiry.

But the handover of the burglary file to their UK counterparts may be seen as a breakthrough in cooperation between the two forces.

Madeleine McCann investigation: Hope of breakthrough as 'cops handed secret dossier', 24 February 2014
Madeleine McCann investigation: Hope of breakthrough as 'cops handed secret dossier' Daily Mirror

By Sam Adams | Feb 24, 2014 06:06

A file contains details of burglars operating near the Portuguese resort where Madeleine vanished has reportedly been handed to British police

 
Madeleine McCann with her brother Sean, sister Amelie and dad Gerry

British police have reportedly been handed a dossier which could hold vital clues on the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

The file is understood to contain details of burglars operating near the Portuguese resort where she vanished in 2007.

The 'dossier' includes information on break-ins in the area immediately before the three-year-old went missing, according to the Daily Star.

Madeleine, who was then nearly four, disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in the Algarve as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.

British detectives launched a fresh investigation into the youngster's disappearance in July last year - two years into a review of the case - and made renewed appeals on television in the UK, the Netherlands and Germany.

After shelving their inquiry into Madeleine's disappearance Portuguese authorities said last October that a review had uncovered enough new information to justify reopening it.

Last week the widow of the prime suspect in Madeleine's disappearance told how she was stunned when police arrived to quiz her – four years after his death.

Luisa Rodrigues was grilled by Portuguese officers as mobile phone records pinpointed Euclides Lopes Monteiro at the scene on the night three-year-old Madeleine was snatched.

The 40-year-old ex-jailbird and heroin junkie remains a key part of the inquiry, even though he died in a tractor accident in 2009 – two years after the abduction.

It has also emerged that British cold-case detectives are anxious to trace three of his known associates who are believed to have carried out burglaries in the Praia da Luz area around the time of the youngster’s disappearance on May 3, 2007.

New tensions in long-running Madeleine inquiry, 25 February 2014
New tensions in long-running Madeleine inquiry Portugal Resident

Posted by PORTUGAL PRESS on February 25, 2014

 
Madeleine McCann

Relations between the Polícia Judiciária (PJ) and Metropolitan Police forces, both of them investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, are once again at a delicate stage.

According to Correio da Manhã newspaper, "the relationship between the British police and the PJ began to become tense when Scotland Yard sent its third letter of request, at a time when work on the second had still not been completed".

Feeling pressured, the PJ have been further ruffled by remarks in the British press by the McCanns, who say they are "frustrated" by the lack of cooperation between the two forces and wish they "would start working together".

This story, published last weekend, comes just days after the Daily Mail carried a report on Scotland Yard boss Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe talking to BBC Radio 5 Live about the fact that his officers "have the names of suspects" that they want to interview, but are waiting for the say-so of the PJ before they can do this.

"We have sent three letters of request for international assistance to the Portuguese judiciary, because that is the way their system works," he told presenter Nicky Campbell, admitting that the Met has "lines of inquiry which are different to the Portuguese Police's and we are working with them to try and resolve that. We are making some progress."

Correio da Manhã suggests the progress is tempered. Writing under the headline "McCanns want to give orders to the PJ", the paper claims that it "knows that many of the steps requested" by the Met, "among them interviews, searches and bank account analysis, cannot be authorised by the prosecutor for the Public Ministry".

It confirms: "The Porto PJ, which leads the investigation reopened in Portugal, is following a different line to that that the parents of the missing child would like" - thus the parents' frustration that the investigation is "not going as it should".

The Met's latest theories appear to be centred on three former workers at the complex in Praia da Luz from which Madeleine disappeared on May 3, 2007.

Meanwhile, tongue-in-cheek Newsbiscuit online service remarked last week that there had been a dearth of "Missing Madeleine" stories on the front page of the Daily Express recently - but this has not stopped the Daily Mail from its regular updates.

Newsbiscuit carries a quote from what it calls "an Express spokesman": "We've got a bet on about how long we can keep a story going with no news content in it whatsoever, and we'll be damned if it's going to fall before seven years is up".

The seventh anniversary of Madeleine McCann's disappearance from a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz is just over two months away.

With thanks to Nigel at McCann Files

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