As a new funding deadline approaches for
Operation Grange - the UK police inquiry
that has spent over €12 million
‘searching for Madeleine McCann -
British newspapers have been running
with “fake stories” centring on the
possibility that the Madeleine Fund is
in danger of being wiped out by a new
court action lodged by former PJ
detective Gonçalo Amaral.
The Mail has inferred that a court case
brought by Amaral is “due to start in
the next few weeks” while the Sun
describes the situation as a “Euro court
The truth is that the case due to be
heard has been instigated by the McCanns
themselves and has nothing whatsoever to
do with former PJ coordinator Gonçalo
Amaral, who has been at pains to
distance himself from media hype ever
since the McCann’s long-running case to
sue him for €1 million failed in the
Supreme Court, Portugal’s final court of
jurisdiction (click here).
Since that time, costs incurred by the
McCanns (and awarded against them) have
been left hanging.
The couple’s bid to overturn the Supreme
Court judgement has failed twice (click
here and click here), thus the jury is
definitely out on the merits of this
appeal to the European Court of Human
But as to the case being anything to do
with Amaral, the former detective has
been in touch to put the record
“There are stories being printed saying
I am taking the couple to court. It’s a
lie. I have never received any kind of
indemnity from them and I have never
asked for one.
“The case they have lodged in the
European court is not against me, but
the Portuguese State.
“These lies just serve to make out that
they are victims, to ask for more money
and to pressure the European Court”.
The father-of-two who has long since
maintained that the McCanns have set out
to “assassinate” his “civil position”,
said: “They should explain how much of
the money of the Fund they have spent on
“For example, how much they have spent
on lawyers fees. These were thousands of
pounds not spent on looking for their
Amaral’s treatment by the British press
has been constant for the last decade.
This week the Sun has called him
“disgraced” (when in fact he won the
case taken out against him by the
McCanns at least three times) and his
theory that the parents could have
covered up their daughter’s accidental
death “shameful” and “ludicrous”.
As to the possibility that the Madeleine
Fund could be “wiped out” if the
European Court dismisses the McCann’s
appeal, this is not news. The situation
of the Fund was highlighted by all
newspapers in March last year. In fact,
Jerry Lawton of the Daily Star referred
to the McCanns “going for broke” and
using the Madeleine Fund to pay for
their legal fees, even though this was
something they had originally vowed they
would never do (click here).
With the deadline for a decision on
further funding for the Metropolitan
Police search approaching, other UK
newspapers have highlighted “an honest
interview” with Madeleine’s father Gerry
where he discusses his struggles with
depression as a result of the stress of
losing a child.
The interview is due to be broadcast on
BBC Radio 4 on September 29.