Amaral regrets that an "investigative
review of the inquiry" was undertaken.
In the first interview where he talks
about the process, he defends that
Maddie died at the Ocean Club. The book
is launched today in Lisbon and promises
to re-launch controversy.
Interview with Gonçalo Amaral in Correio
da Manhã today
investigation was reviewed"
Gonçalo Amaral regrets that an
"investigative review of the inquiry"
was undertaken. In the first interview
during which he speaks about the
process, he defends that Maddie died at
the Ocean Club. The book is launched in
Lisbon today and promises to launch the
Correio da Manhã – As the case
investigator, what is your thesis?
Gonçalo Amaral – The little girl died in
the apartment. Everything is in the
book, which is faithful to the
investigation until September: it
reflects the understanding of the
Portuguese and the English police and of
the Public Ministry. For all of us,
until then, the concealment of the
cadaver, the simulation of abduction and
the exposure or abandonment were proved.
What led you to indict the
McCanns over all of those crimes?
It all starts with an abduction theory
that is forced by the parents. And the
abduction is based on two facts: one is
Jane Tanner's testimony that says she
saw a man passing in front of the
apartment, carrying a child; the other
is the bedroom window, which, according
to Kate, was open when it should have
been closed. It was proved that none of
How was it proved?
Jane Tanner is not credible: she
identifies and recognizes different
people. She starts with Murat, later on
someone else is mentioned, according to
the drawing done by a witness, and she
already says that is the person,
completely different from Robert Murat.
Jane Tanner's testimony drove
the abduction theory.
In order to advance into that direction,
it would be necessary to give her
credit: there was no other indicium of
the abduction. And the issue of the
bedroom window, where Maddie and her
siblings slept, is vital. It leads to
simulation. This means, whether or not
it was open when Jane says that she saw
the man carrying the child. The little
girl’s mother, Kate, is the only person
that mentions the open window.
Does that undo the abduction
There lies the solution. To be closed or
not, is a strong indicium for
simulation. And why does one simulate
abduction, rather than simply saying
that the child has disappeared? She
could have opened the door and left…
Do Kate's fingerprints reinforce
the simulation theory?
They are the only fingerprints on the
window. And in a position of opening the
Did Kate have suspicious
She goes out for dinner and supposedly
leaves three children asleep. She
returns, one is missing, she goes out,
leaving the window wide open with the
twins asleep. And the night, according
to what she says, was very cold…
What about Maddie's bed?
It carries no signs that anyone was in
it. Nor does the chair or the bed under
the window. And there are no imprints
The reconstitution is missing.
It was not carried out 10 or 15 days
after the facts, because the resort was
full of tourists. We trusted that it
could be carried out at a later date. It
Did you request data about the
At 8 a.m. on the 4th, the request was
made to the English liaison officer, but
[the data] never arrived.
What did you want to know?
Who the people are, their antecedents.
And the child, whether or not there are
complaints against the parents or
others. How she behaved in school, to
find out if she was the target of abuse.
How important is the Irish
witness within the case?
He explained where he and his family had
seen, at 10 p.m. on the 3rd of May, a
man carrying a little girl. And it
wasn't Murat. They did not see the face,
but they described the athletic and
clumsy manner in which he carried the
That was back in May.
When the McCanns returned to England,
the witness, watching Gerry get off the
plane and walking across the asphalt
carrying his child, had a realization.
By the manner in which he walked and the
clumsy way that he carries the child, he
is 70 to 80 percent certain that it was
the person he saw that evening. Says he
and say the other members of the family.
What did you do?
On the days before I left Portimão we
were taking care of that trip to
Portugal. Then, the hearing of that
witness was requested through a liaison
officer from the Irish police in Madrid,
which took months. During that time, the
witness was approached by persons that
are connected to the McCanns' staff, I
don’t know with what intention. They
felt pressured. Later on, the hearing
arrived and he maintains the probability
of 70 to 80 percent that it was Gerry
who carried the little girl towards the
Couldn't that have been included
in the rogatory letter?
It could and it should. The ideal would
have been for him to come to Portugal,
as a key witness. Just like the couple
of doctors that describe the situation
Once the abduction theory was
set apart, how was the death theory
With the elements that exist, we could
only reach an accident, natural death,
any cause without the intervention of
another person. We were cementing
evidence and advancing to understand
what happened to the little girl's body.
Also based on information from the
British lab, about residues that were
found inside the car that was rented by
Where and how could they have
hidden the body for over twenty days?
That was what we were trying to find
out. Searching within their friends,
because the couple had a lot of
acquaintances. We tried to understand
where the little girl could have been
during those twenty something days.
Out of reach from the searches.
Yes. There was information that the
couple had been seen walking towards a
certain apartment block, we were trying
to understand which apartment it was.
Who had access to that apartment. But
How do you interpret that
stopping of everything, when you left?
It seems as though an investigative
review of the inquiry was undertaken.
It was even said that the blood
that was found was not human.
The dogs only smell human blood. The
sample that is collected and taken to
England, to be analysed with the Low
Copy Number technique, is microscopic.
The technique does not allow them to
state whether it is blood or any other
type of fluid – but it guarantees that
it is human.
The family tried to justify
Later on, a brother-in-law and a cousin
of Kate said that they had carried
steaks in the trunk that had thawed,
even garbage, but no. The dogs follow
neither garbage smell nor non-human
blood. Then there is a witness, that was
never heard, a jurist that lived next to
the couple, in the second house [villa]
outside of the apartment, saying that
the car trunk was left open during the
night, for airing. But maybe that was
because of the garbage…
Within the theory of the
parents' involvement, can you
reconstitute that night?
We had already concluded, long before
the Irish witness, that if those persons
were involved, there was only one
possibility. It pointed towards the
beach. Not only because of what
[locations] they knew but also due to
the terrain’s conditions. In that area,
it is not easy to dig a hole. One either
knows where holes already exist, or it
is not possible, within a short time
lapse, to decide where to place a corpse
without knowing the area. If there was
involvement, it would have been towards
the beach area. Which is later
corroborated by the Irish witness.
At the time when the Irish
tourist reportedly saw Gerry, there are
various witness statements that place
the child’s father at the Ocean Club.
They are not credible. The employees are
unable to tell at what time the persons
were there, for how long each one of
them stayed away when they say they went
to the apartments. And the group is not
credible. They say that on the previous
nights, every 30 minutes, each one of
them went to check only on his own
children; but on that night, between
9.30 and 10 p.m., someone curiously goes
to check that apartment, almost every
five minutes, leaving the rest
And what about Gerry?
He justifies some of the time with a
trip to the toilet. That is not five
minutes, then he meets another
individual outside. Hence the need for
the reconstruction. To find out how long
it took them to get to the apartments,
what route they walked, etc. A
reconstruction that should be joint with
the restaurant's movement, because when
it is said that they asked for the food
from 9 p.m. onwards, there was one
person who ordered a steak. And that
steak was heated again because someone
was not there. It is necessary to find
out whose steak that was. He was away
for a much longer time period…
An adult carrying a child, until
the beach, how long [does it take]?
How was it possible for the
apartment to be rented out after the
The apartment was immediately fully
contaminated by the parents' action,
before the police arrived. A complete
fair was built there and at a certain
point, dogs were demanded to come inside
You admitted the possibility
that the children had been given
The twins, with the lights on, with the
lights off, with a crowd of people going
in and out, slept until 2 a.m., when
they were carried into another
apartment. Even then, they continued to
sleep. That sleep is not normal.
But the Judiciária did nothing.
Once again, we were inhibited. We
thought about asking the parents to test
their hair, in order to understand
whether there were sedatives, but as
soon as it was found out, it would be
said that we were suspecting the
parents, and it was being avoided at all
costs that it became public that those
How is there room for
speculation about the DNA tests? It was
those results that allowed you to
advance with the arguido status.
The speculation is done by the scientist
who performs the test. He starts out by
saying, in his preliminary report, that
it was easy to say that it was Maddie.
Then he raised other questions. Of
course nobody can be accused, based on
that data alone.
"The cadaver was frozen"
Correio da Manhã - What do you
think happened to the body?
Gonçalo Amaral – Everything indicated
that the body, after having been at a
certain location, was moved into another
location by car, twenty something days
later. With the residues that were found
inside the car, the little girl had to
have been transported inside it.
How can you state that?
Due to the type of fluid, we policemen,
experts, say that the cadaver was frozen
or preserved in the cold and when placed
into the car boot, with the heat at that
time [of the year], part of the ice
melted. On a curb, for example,
something fell from the trunk's right
side, above the wheel. It may be said
that this is speculation, but it's the
only way to explain what happened there.
If the body was hidden in the
beach area first, was it always out of
reach for the searches?
The beach was searched at a time when it
is not known whether the body was still
there. Using dogs, but sniffer dogs have
limitations, like the salted water, for
example. Later on, it may have been
"We should have done phone
Correio da Manhã – Did you feel
political pressure during the
G.A. – Inhibition. One of the mistakes
was that we did not advance on this
group with everything that legally was
within our reach: Tapping, surveillance.
It was necessary, for example, to
recover the clothes that the little girl
was wearing when she left the crèche to
go home. There, we thought: if we go, it
will immediately be said that we suspect
the parents. That inhibition happened
And that led you towards the
We had to prove that there was no
abduction, in order to focus on those
How does the pressure appear?
Right on the morning of the 4th of May,
with a consul calling the embassy and
saying that the PJ wasn't doing
anything. Then an ambassador. Next, an
advisor and the English prime minister.
"Payne is the last one to
Correio da Manhã – When do
testimonies concerning David Payne's
behaviour indicating sexual practices
with minors arrive?
Gonçalo Amaral – In May. Something went
wrong with that group during a holiday:
David Payne made revealing gestures
concerning behaviour towards children.
Even towards Maddie. We asked for
information but it arrived after the
26th of October. They sent the
information without giving it any
What exactly did arrive?
A couple of doctors spent holidays in
Mallorca, in 2005, with David Payne, the
McCanns and another couple. The lady
says she saw Payne with his finger in
his mouth, making a movement in and out,
while rubbing his nipple with the other
hand. And he was talking about Maddie,
next to her father. Those statements
should have been given a different
treatment by the police. It was relevant
to access the information, about
doctors, who are just as credible as
What else remains unclear
concerning David Payne?
He will be the last one to see Maddie
alive after 5.30 p.m., when she leaves
the crèche. He meets Gerry playing
tennis and asks him about Kate and the
children. Gerry answers that they are in
the apartment and he goes there. He
returns 30 minutes later. Kate says it
was 30 seconds. There is something not
quite right here.
The evidence and the results of
"Arriving this far, it is important to
make a deductive summary about this
case. Which means, to reject what is
false; to set aside what cannot be
proved, because it is insufficient; to
consider as valid and certain what has
What is proved
1. The abduction theory
is defended by Maddie's parents since
the first moment;
2. Within the group,
only her parents stated that they
observed the open window in the missing
girl's bedroom; the majority cannot
witness it faithfully because they
arrived at the apartment after the alarm
3. The only statement
outside of the group that mentions the
open window and the raised shutters
comes from Amy, one of the Ocean Club's
nannies, who points her observation
towards 10.20/10.30 p.m., which is some
time after the alarm was raised and does
not prove that it was open like that at
the time when the crime happened;
4. The set of
depositions and witness statements
exposes a high number of imprecision,
incongruence and contradictions – which,
in some cases, may be typified as false
testimonies. In particular, the key
statement for the abduction theory, from
Jane Tanner, which loses all credibility
due to the fact that it successively
evolved throughout various moments in
time, becoming ambiguous and
5. There is a cadaver
that has not been located, a conclusion
that is validated by the English EVRD
and CSI dogs and corroborated by the
preliminary lab test results.
Certainties until October
"For me, and for the investigators that
worked with me on the case until October
2007, the results that we reached were
1. The minor Madeleine
McCann died in apartment 5A at the Ocean
Club, in Vila da Luz, on the evening of
the 3rd of May 2007;
2. An abduction was
3. Kate Healy and
Gerald McCann are suspected of
involvement in the concealment of their
4. Death may have
resulted from a tragic accident;
5. There is indicia of
neglect in the guard and safety of the
"Decisive diligence was
never carried out"
"The Smith family [Irish witnesses] is
available to make a formal recognition.
We had already contacted the Smith
family, from Ireland, whose patriarch
was prepared to travel to the Algarve,
to give a new statement and for a formal
recognition […] following the
recognition that he had made on
television of the man who on the 3rd of
May, in Vila da Luz, walked towards the
beach carrying a little girl, a little
girl that they had recognized as being
"The man that the Smith were talking
about was, with a high degree of
certainty, Gerald McCann, who they had
seen on the English television news, on
the day that the McCann couple returned
[on their definitive trip] to the United
Kingdom. That man that came down the
airplane stairs and walked on the
asphalt, carrying a child, was
apparently the same man who, on the
evening of the 3rd of May, walked into
the direction of the beach, carrying
Madeleine, who seemed to be deeply
"When the situation was presented to the
National Director of the Polícia
Judiciária [Alípio Ribeiro at that
time], he agreed with what was being
suggested to him, [namely] the coming to
the Algarve, at our expenses, of the
elements of the Smith family that were
able to testify the facts."
McCanns erased all the
The calls on the couple's mobile phones
were erased, with the exception, in
Kate's case, of a call from her husband
at 11.17 on that night of the 3rd of
May, minutes after the disappearance was
known. But this call is not registered
on the mobile phone that belongs to
Gerry, who erased all the phone calls of
that day, presumably after he called
Kate at that time. This fact, that was
never clarified in terms of its
motivation, intrigued the investigators.