A Lisbon court has ruled national daily Correio da Manha
pay a total of 15,000 euros to Robert Murat who was
dragged into the case of missing British toddler
Madeleine McCann after volunteering to act as a
translator between Portuguese authorities and the
In its judgment, the court found that publishing false allegations
such as “Robert Murat is a predator who visits sites
containing sexual violence” was not in the public
interests and infringed upon his rights.
The newspaper frequently quoted anonymous police sources and
alleged leaks by investigators in their coverage of the
case to substantiate its claims.
“This is the 33-year old Englishman police believe dragged little
Maddie from the bed in which she was sleeping up to the
house where he lives with his mother”, the newspaper
wrote in May 2007 shortly after Mr. Murat was declared a
person of interest or arguido and questioned by police
in a marathon 19-hour-long interrogation session in
Following these and several other extraordinary statements as to
his alleged personality and behavioural traits, Mr.
Murat was forced to regularly wear a disguise when going
out in public, all the while receiving threatening
telephone calls and letters.
His real estate business was ruined as a result of the negative
publicity, though he has since managed to set up a
successful computer business in the Algarve.
Back in 2008, Robert Murat received 757,000 euros in damages from a
number of British newspapers for false allegations they
published. Amongst them were the Sunday Express, to
which Robert Murat gave an exclusive interview last
Sunday which was published on their front page under the
headline, ‘Bring Them All Back to Portugal’. This was a
call made in reference to Kate and Gerry McCann and the
remainder of the so-called Tapas 9 coming to the country
to carry out a reconscontruction of events leading up to
Madeleine McCann’s disappearance.
Meanwhile, Kate McCann this week visited the Algarve.
One of her first visits was to the Nossa Senhora da Luz church to
pray and light candles.
Sources close to the family said “she will spend a few days in
Praia da Luz. She feels close to Madeleine there.
“It is a private trip alone, away from the spotlight, and a time
for quiet reflection. She still has a lot of friends
there”, the source was quoted as telling the Daily
In a post on the findmadeleine.com site, Kate McCann confided that
“it’s difficult to know what to write as each year
passes, still without news of Madeleine. In many ways,
nothing’s changed. We still worry about her, we miss her
as much as we ever did, we remain as determined as ever
to find her and to know what has happened.”
She praised the “significant progress” over the last year in the
work of the Metropolitan Police and said the family
remains greatly encouraged by their work and the many
things they have managed to uncover so far.
“We continue to hope and pray that the Met working with the
Portuguese Authorities will lead to a significant
breakthrough. We need to find Madeleine and bring some
peace to our family.”