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
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
Gerry McCann: "...it's been a fantastic response."
27 November 2013: The Metropolitan Police
announce their desire to set up a "joint investigation team" with the Portuguese authorities. Met Police Commissioner
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe says the force is seeking agreement for the team from the UK and Portuguese and UK governments, and
that it would be more effective than the current "ad-hoc" approach to working together.
2013: The Crimewatch update is broadcast, although this amounts to little more than a brief comment from the McCanns
and an interview with DCI Andy Redwood, live from the incident room, which lasts little more than a minute.
Madeleine McCann: Crimewatch appeal
update (to be broadcast on 28/11/13), 25 November 2013
Madeleine McCann: Crimewatch appeal update BBC One
DURATION: 1 HOUR
The team are live with Britain's biggest unsolved cases including, following a special appeal, the latest developments
in the Madeleine McCann investigation.
Also featuring crimes caught on camera in Martin Bayfield's CCTV round
up and a new collection of wanted faces.
Detectives from across the UK are in the studio ready to take your calls
and there are updates on the latest cases to have been cracked thanks to Crimewatch viewers.
Thu 28 Nov 2013 21:00 BBC One
UK and Portuguese governments trying to set
up joint police investigation, 27 November 2013
Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe says Met trying to get agreement for joint #madeleine team from Portuguese & UK govts and police forces
1:14 PM - 27 Nov 2013
[text version of above]
Danny Shaw @DannyShawBBC
Hogan-Howe: formal working arrangement between Portuguese/UK would be more efficient and effective than current
"ad hoc" approach #madeleine
1:24 PM - 27 Nov 2013
Madeleine McCann inquiries: Met wants 'joint
investigation team', 27 November 2013
Madeleine McCann inquiries: Met wants 'joint investigation
team' BBC News
27 November 2013 Last updated at 13:32
The Metropolitan Police want to set up a "joint investigation
team" with the Portuguese authorities into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
Met Police Commissioner
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said the force was seeking agreement for the team from the UK and Portuguese and UK governments.
He said it would be more effective than the current "ad-hoc" approach to working together.
disappeared from Praia da Luz, in the Algarve, in May 2007.
Last month, Portuguese police reopened their inquiry
into the disappearance of Madeleine, who was three when she went missing from her family's holiday apartment as her
parents dined at a nearby tapas bar.
Portugal's attorney general said "new elements of evidence"
justified the "continuation of the investigation", which was shelved in 2008.
That came a week after
an appeal by British police - launched on BBC One's Crimewatch programme - prompted 2,400 responses.
Call for Madeleine police teams to work together,
27 November 2013
Call for Madeleine police teams to work together ITV News
2:51pm, Wed 27 Nov 2013
Madeleine McCann vanished while
holidaying with her parents in Praia da Luz in 2007. Credit: PA
British and Portuguese police should
join together as one team in their investigations into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner
Currently Scotland Yard is running its own inquiry into what happened to the little girl, who vanished
while holidaying with her parents in Praia da Luz in 2007, while the Portuguese authorities have their own investigation.
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said: "One thing we'd like to see in the future is a joint investigation team which
comes under the European community. It is a possibility legally, and we're working together at a political level, and
at a police and judicial level, to see how we can construct that.
"There are two separate inquiries with a
different focus - we've got one particular set of lines of inquiry and they have a different one. But it's important
that we work together on what is clearly a common problem.
"It's a formal arrangement, it allows officers
from each country to work in the other country, it gives them powers associated with that, and it's an efficient way of
"If you're not careful, you end up doing things on an ad-hoc basis, and for us it would be better
to have that type of arrangement. So that's what we're trying to get agreement between the two governments and the
two police services."
Madeleine McCann inquiries: Met wants 'joint
investigation team', 27 November 2013
Madeleine McCann inquiries: Met wants 'joint investigation
team' BBC News
27 November 2013 Last updated at 15:14
The Metropolitan Police want to set up a "joint
investigation team" with the Portuguese authorities into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said the force was seeking agreement for the team from the UK and Portuguese and
He said it would be more effective than the current "ad-hoc" approach to working together.
Madeleine disappeared from Praia da Luz, in the Algarve, in May 2007.
Last month, Portuguese police reopened
their inquiry into the disappearance of Madeleine, who was three when she went missing from her family's holiday apartment
as her parents dined at a nearby tapas bar.
Portugal's attorney general said "new elements of evidence"
justified the "continuation of the investigation", which was shelved in 2008.
That came a week after
an appeal by British police, launched on BBC One's Crimewatch programme.
The BBC said the programme, shown
on 14 October, had prompted 3,500 calls, texts and emails from members of the public.
Sir Bernard said he would
like to see a joint investigation team, "which comes under the European community".
"It is a possibility
legally and we're working together at a political level, and at a police and judicial level, to see how we can construct
that," he said.
"There are two separate inquiries with a different focus - we've got one particular
set of lines of inquiry and they have a different one.
"But it's important that we work together on what
is clearly a common problem."
He said a new "formal arrangement" would allow "officers from
each country to work in the other country - it gives them powers associated with that and it's an efficient way of doing
The senior investigating officer of the British inquiry,
Det Ch Insp Andy Redwood, is due to provide an update on the Crimewatch appeal on the programme on Thursday night.
But BBC home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw said Det Ch Insp Redwood was not expected to release any major new information.
In the appeal, detectives released two e-fits of a man seen carrying a child in Praia da Luz at 22:00 on the night
Madeleine, from Rothley, Leicestershire, went missing.
-------------------- Thursday 3 May 2007: Timeline
20:30 Kate and Gerry McCann leave their apartment
to have dinner at a Tapas bar
21:05 Gerry McCann checks on Madeleine and her siblings
A man is seen carrying a child wearing pyjamas heading towards the ocean
22:00 Kate McCann
raises the alarm that Madeleine has gone missing
The programme, which was later repeated in the Netherlands
and Germany, also revealed police now suspected she could have been taken later than previously thought - just before her
mother returned to the apartment to check on her.
Announcing their new investigation last month, Portuguese police
said a review team had been working since March 2011 to look back through information from the original investigation.
They said this had uncovered potential new lines of inquiry, which were separate from those being followed by the
Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, said they hoped the new Portuguese inquiry would "finally
lead to her being found and to the discovery of whoever is responsible for this crime".
Crimewatch will be
shown on BBC One at 21:00 GMT on Thursday.
Scotland Yard want a Portuguese-British investigation
into the Madeleine case, 27 November 2013
Scotland Yard want a Portuguese-British investigation into
the Madeleine case La Informacion
Wednesday, 27/11/13 - 19:49
London, Nov. 27 (Reuters) -. The
London Metropolitan Police (Scotland Yard or MET) has asked the British and Portuguese governments to authorize a joint police
investigation between the two countries over the 2007 disappearance in Portugal of British girl Madeleine McCann, the BBC
Scotland Yard want a Portuguese-British investigation into the Madeleine case
According to the UK public broadcaster, the MET Commissioner Bernard
Hogan-Lowe [sic] has called for the formation of a "joint investigation team" considering that it would be more
effective than the current situation, in which both police forces collaborate in parallel investigations.
October, the Portuguese police reopened - to find new evidence - the case of Madeleine, who disappeared on May 3, 2007, when
she was 3 years old, from the Portuguese Algarve apartment where she slept with her twin siblings, while their parents dined
at a restaurant in the same complex.
The Portuguese officers, who came to regard the parents of the child, Gerry
and Kate McCann, as suspicious, had previously filed the case in 2008 for lack of evidence.
The Portuguese investigation
runs parallel to that initiated in 2012 by Scotland Yard, with the express support of British Prime Minister David Cameron,
who is committed to the parents of the girl.
Last month, in a new impetus to investigation, the MET released two
electronic images of a man allegedly linked to the incident.
In addition, the BBC television show Crimewatch dedicated
a show - broadcast also in Germany and the Netherlands - to the disappearance of the girl, prompting thousands of calls from
The programme will provide an update on Thursday, although it is not expected that there will
be any significant news.
White British; The Madeleine McCann story,
27 November 2013
POSTED BY THELONDONECONOMIC ON NOVEMBER 27, 2013 By Jack Peat, Editor
of The London Economic
The Madeleine McCann story offers the most potent example of what
makes British media tick and what British people want to read.
Although crimes and atrocities occur every day,
there are criteria which land them on page nine and conditions which qualify it for extraordinary media coverage, bordering
on the obsessive. For the missing girls of India or teenagers in London enslaved by gangs it’s the former, in Madeleine
McCann's case it was very much the latter.
The disappearance of Madeleine McCann
The disappearance of Madeleine McCann is both a press phenomenon and an accurate portrayal of how the media functions. The
ordinary middle class McCann family is what made their case perversely extraordinary. It's relatable and thus the more
shocking, despite being commonplace in the context of wider global affairs.
An intriguing question posted on thestudentroom.co.uk
is "Would Madeleine McCann get as much attention if she was Black?" The prevailing opinion was, unsurprisingly,
no. She is one girl out of hundreds that go missing every year, one student argued, adding that if the rest were given the
same amount of exposure, more missing kids would be found.
This is an interesting hypothesis. Media coverage of
McCann has undoubtedly fuelled police spending both at home and abroad, suggesting there is a link between what the public
reads and what Scotland Yard investigates. It also raises the question of whether the McCann's should be grateful of the
media coverage, despite being publically resentful of it.
After Portuguese police inquiries were shelved in 2008
there was a Home Office-funded review in 2011 following the intervention of David Cameron. Why the Prime Minister intervened
in a police case isn't a mystery; the red top readers are waiting for a response.
The McCann case has been so extensively profiled that new angles and fresh stories can fill our papers for many years
to come. On a slow news day it's these kind of hooks which are regurgitated; an editorial strategy which means we never
really hear the full story.
High profile cases linger in the public’s memory, and the fact there's been
no conclusion to this tale has fuelled media churning to some extent. But even the hacks facing 'slow days' in the
newsroom will tell you no such case has managed to hit the headlines so relentlessly, with so few new developments.
I often compare the Madeleine McCann story to press coverage of war zones. A British soldier will make the news even if
he died killing 1,000 Iraqis, which will go unreported. For the British public, it’s not the scale of the atrocity but
whether they can relate to it, whether they can identify an 'enemy' and whether they can comprehend the incomprehensible.
Is it deserving?
The McCann case is deserving of British press coverage because it satisfies
the essential criteria of coverage, which are largely determined by us. It is undoubtedly unique in the amount of press attention
it received, but it is regardless a potent example of what drives British media.
For those disgusted by a Madeleine
McCann front page while tales of bigger atrocities lie scattered and sparse throughout the rest of the publication I would
advise avoiding the periodical all together and reconsidering the news you digest. I still maintain that The Economist, for
example, contains more 'newsworthy' content in the first two pages than a red top does in a week's worth of print.
The question posed at the start of this feature is "what fuels media obsession with one middle class white girl
and its ignorance of so many other similar cases?" The answer, I believe, is us.
Madeleine McCann: Portuguese police in Algarve
'no help to hunt', 28 November 2013
Madeleine McCann: Portuguese police in Algarve 'no
help to hunt'
By Tom Pettifor | 28 Nov 2013 01:20
friend of Kate and Gerry McCann said: "The Policia Judiciara are not pulling their weight and are almost working against
Portuguese police hunting for Madeleine McCann's kidnapper
are not "pulling their weight," a source close her parents said yesterday.
Fears that tension between
the country's Policia Judiciara and Scotland Yard is mounting comes as Britain's top cop called on the two forces
to unite in a joint investigation.
The Met Police's Bernard Hogan-Howe's plea is "a polite but public
expression of frustration", Kate and Gerry McCann's close pal believes.
The source added: "They can't
see this ever happening else it would have happened six and a half years ago!
"It seems the PJ are not pulling
their weight and are almost working against the Met!
"If Mr Hogan-Howe is at pains to stress that both investigations
should run jointly, and not in parallel, it shows his frustration that the present system to find Madeleine and whoever took
her is not working."
The source added: "There are two separate agendas here. The Met recently showed
on Crimewatch images of a white suspect they are looking for.
"Just two or three days later the PJ say they
are hunting for a black tractor driver! It is completely contradictory to what the Met are saying!
obvious to us that the PJ are back to their old game, which is not helping the search for Madeleine."
specialist Gerry and former GP wife Kate, both 45, of Rothley, Leics, declined to comment while the police inquiry is ingoing.
Their spokesperson Clarence Mitchell said: "How the investigations are run is entirely a matter for both police
forces to agree themselves."
Maddie was aged nearly four when she vanished from a holiday apartment in Portugal's
Praia da Luz in May 2007.
------------------- Maddie police in Algarve 'no help to hunt' Daily Mirror (paper edition, page 19)
BY TOM PETTIFOR
- Crime Correspondent Thursday November 28, 2013
PORTUGUESE police are not "pulling their weight"
in the search for the kidnapper of Madeleine McCann, a source close to her parents said yesterday.
Met Police chief
Bernard Hogan-Howe has called for a joint investigation between his force and the Policia Judiciaria to help avoid an "ad
A close friend of Kate and Gerry McCann believes his plea is a "polite but public expression
The source said: "The Met had images on Crimewatch of a white suspect. Days later the
PJ say they are hunting for a black tractor driver."
The McCanns declined to comment. Madeleine was aged nearly
four when she vanished in Praia da Luz in May 2007. An update will be shown on Crimewatch BBC1 tonight at 9pm.
Bexley mum helps Madeleine McCann case after
daughter nearly snatched, 28 November 2013
Bexley mum helps Madeleine McCann case after daughter nearly
snatched News Shopper
By Tim MacFarlan, Bexley and north Kent reporter 1:21pm Thursday
28th November 2013
Jessica today holding a photo of her and brother Gary on the holiday
where she was nearly snatched.
A MUM from Bexley has told detectives working on the Madeleine McCann case of the
chilling moment her daughter was nearly abducted in Gran Canaria.
Mother Lisa Allen, 38, was on holiday in the
resort of Puerto Rico with daughter Jessica, then aged six, and son Gary, who was four at the time, when the incident occurred.
Too nervous to report the incident to the Spanish authorities as a young mum on her first trip abroad, it was not
until Ms Allen saw a recent BBC Crimewatch programme on Madeleine McCann that she came forward to tell her story.
The links between Jessica's near abduction and the case of Jeremy Vargas, who vanished from his home in Gran Canaria
aged seven on March 10 last year, also brought back horrible memories for Ms Allen of when her daughter was nearly snatched
in October 2000.
On a visit to a market during the holiday, the mother-of-five was pushing Gary in his buggy and
talking to her brother Daniel, 34, while Jessica was walking a few yards ahead.
Gary, Lisa and Jessica Allen in Gran Canaria in 2000.
Suddenly, Ms Allen looked up and saw a man grabbing her daughter by the top of her arm and marching her quickly
away between two stalls.
The full-time mum told News Shopper: "I let go of the buggy, ran over and grabbed
his opposite arm.
"He didn't say anything – he just looked at me with a big smirk on his face and
a big grin like he knew he had been caught.
"He was quite big, stocky and tanned and he just turned around
and walked away at a really quick pace.
"If I had looked up a few seconds later Jessica would 100 per cent
have been gone."
Ms Allen has since spoken twice to Metropolitan Police detectives investigating three-year-old
Madeleine McCann's disappearance from a holiday apartment in Portugal in 2007.
The Puerto Rico resort (pic by Dan Kamminga).
And Ms Allen, who lives with Jessica in Mount Pleasant Walk, Bexley, said the near miss made her much more worried for her
Jessica Allen, now 19, works at a call centre in Dartford and has vivid memories of the terrifying moment
in 2000 when she was nearly wrenched from her family by a complete stranger.
The former Cleeve Park School pupil
said: "I remember pinching him and scratching him and trying to get him off me.
"I didn't scream
because I just didn't think about it. The guy just basically laughed in mum's face.
"I do sit and
actually think if it weren't for my mum seeing me in those last couple of seconds I might have been gone.
this day, I will be out on the street and I will still worry about it and I am very conscious of people around me."
BBC Crimewatch: Madeleine McCann update,
28 November 2013
Kirsty Young: Last month we had the latest on Madeleine McCann investigation
- the 3-year-old vanished, of course, from her holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, in Portugal, in May of 2007.
from Crimewatch reconstruction, Kate describes entering the apartment]
As I opened it a bit, I... I kind of looked into the room. I guess I was looking at Madeleine's bed and I couldn't...
couldn't make her out and it was literally at that point the curtains - that I say, were closed - just kind of 'whoooosh!'
And then I could see that the window had been pushed right over and the shutters were up. So, I... I kind of knew straight
away, then, that Madeleine had been taken.
Kirsty Young: Well, following our reconstruction, we
had an unprecedented response with the highest number of calls ever to our studio. The next day, the Met police detectives
leading the case travelled to the Netherlands, to appeal on the Dutch version of Crimewatch, before moving on to Germany,
where they were joined by Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry, to appeal on the German equivalent of our show. Our cameras
were there and we spoke to them about how they felt it was all going.
Gerry McCann: From our point
of view, and I'm sure for, errr... Metropolitan Police, it's been a fantastic response.
I mean, one... once again, you know, the general public have shown how supportive they are and how keen they are for us to
find Madeleine as well and that gives us great encouragement and hope.
Kirsty Young: Well, I should
tell you that a little later on this evening I'm going to be speaking live to the lead detective on the case for the very
BBC Crimewatch: Madeleine McCann update (Andy Redwood) YouTube
Kirsty Young: ...special Madeleine McCann appeal. Well, we can now speak live
to DCI Andy Redwood, of course, he's the lead detective on the case. He joins us from the actual incident room itself
in Belgravia, in London. Thanks for joining me and taking the time. Errm... Can you tell me a little bit about the response
and how its, errr... impacting on the investigation.
Andy Redwood: Well, it's been an absolutely
fantastic response, Kirsty. Over 3 and a half thousand calls, texts and emails, some really interesting new information -
people in Praia da Luz or in the area at the time.
Kirsty Young: Errm... Since, errr... the programme
last month, the Portuguese police have announced that they are reopening their investigation and as recently as yesterday,
errm... the head of the Met Police said that he thinks there should be a joint investigation. Do you think that's important?
Andy Redwood: Well, it's very important to us that the case has been reopened and over the coming
weeks and months we are looking to develop further our relationship with the Portuguese police and authorities and hoping
jointly to work together in a focused and determined way to find what has happened Mad... to Madeleine McCann.
Young: Andy, can I just ask you briefly, there was coverage of somebody who was described in the press as a 'prime
suspect' who had since died. What can... can you tell us anything about that?
Well, there are a number of really important lines of inquiry that we are following up at the moment, errm... lots to do.
But this evening, Kirsty, what I'd really like to do is to thank the public for the huge and continuing, errr... help
that they provided us.
Kirsty Young: Okay, I'm sure you'll update us as the investigation
progresses and we thank you for taking the time, Andy, to talk to us, errr... tonight.
BBC Crimewatch: Madeleine McCann update (screenshots),
28 November 2013
Kate McCann: "...the curtains - that I say, were closed - just kind of 'whoooosh!'"
Kate McCann: "So, I... I kind of knew straight away, then, that Madeleine had been taken."
Gerry McCann: "...it's been a fantastic response."
Madeleine McCann appeal: Police hail thousands
of calls, 28 November 2013
Madeleine McCann appeal: Police hail thousands of calls BBC News
28 November 2013 Last updated at 22:17
Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann
say they have received 5,000 calls since a fresh appeal on the BBC's Crimewatch.
Members of the public
from the UK, Germany and the Netherlands contacted officers with information following the programme in October.
Det Ch Insp Andy Redwood described the response as "fantastic".
Many of the calls came from people
who were in Praia da Luz, Portugal, when Madeleine disappeared in 2007, he said.
Det Ch Insp Redwood said he had
been in Portugal this week as part of the Metropolitan Police's investigation, codenamed Operation Grange.
media appeals produced a fantastic response from the public in all three countries with a total of 3,500 calls and messages
in the UK, 850 to Germany, and 650 in Holland," he told BBC One's Crimewatch.
"Lots of people have
called to say they were in Praia da Luz at the time. All of this information has obviously produced a very large volume of
work for the Operation Grange team to work through.
He added that there had also been "large number"
of calls to Portuguese police.
Announcing their new investigation last month, police in the country said a review
team had been working since March 2011 to look back through information from the original investigation.
said this had uncovered potential new lines of inquiry, which were separate from those being followed by the Met.
On Wednesday, the Met said it wanted to set up a "joint investigation team" with the Portuguese authorities.
Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said the force was seeking agreement from the UK and Portuguese governments.
He said it would be more effective than the current "ad-hoc" approach to working together.
from Rothley, Leicestershire, was three when she disappeared. Police have said her abduction could have been pre-planned.
The appeal update comes after detectives released two e-fits of a man seen carrying a child in Praia da Luz at 22:00
on the night Madeleine went missing.
Police have said they now suspect she could have been taken later than previously
thought - just before her mother returned to the apartment to check on her.
The original Crimewatch appeal was
repeated in the Netherlands and Germany.
Madeleine McCann: Detective's thanks
after 5,000 viewers contact police after TV appeals across Europe, 28 November 2013
Madeleine McCann: Detective's thanks after 5,000
viewers contact police after TV appeals across Europe
By Paul Cockerton | 28 Nov 2013 22:25
Several holidaymakers who were in Praia da Luz, Portugal in 2007 when the little girl vanished have made contact
with his team
A senior detective investigating the disappearance of Madeleine
McCann has thanked the public for thousands of messages received in the wake of recent television appeals.
Chief Inspector Andy Redwood said several holidaymakers who were in Praia da Luz, Portugal in 2007 when the little girl vanished
had made contact with his team.
British police launched their own investigation into Madeleine's disappearance
earlier this year, called Operation Grange, and recently made renewed appeals for information on television in the UK, Holland
Appearing on the BBC's Crimewatch programme tonight, Mr Redwood said : "The media appeals
produced a fantastic response from the public in all three countries with a total of 3,500 calls and messages in the UK, 850
to Germany, and 650 in Holland.
"Lots of people have called to say they were in Praia da Luz at the time.
"All of this information has obviously produced a very large volume of work for the Operation Grange team to
"I have been in Faro this week working with police colleagues, and I know the appeal generated
a large number of calls to the Portuguese police also.
"I'd like to thank the media and the public for
their continued assistance in this challenging enquiry."
Yesterday Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe
said British and Portuguese police should join together as one team in their investigations into what happened to Madeleine.
The little girl, then aged three, went missing from a holiday apartment where she was sleeping with her two younger
siblings as her parents dined nearby with friends.
The Portuguese shelved their inquiry into her disappearance
in 2008, but last month said that a review had uncovered enough new information to justify reopening the case.
Commissioner said: ''One thing we'd like to see in the future is a joint investigation team which comes under
the European community.
"It is a possibility legally, and we're working together at a political level,
and at a police and judicial level, to see how we can construct that.
''If you're not careful, you
end up doing things on an ad-hoc basis, and for us it would be better to have that type of arrangement.
that's what we're trying to get agreement between the two governments and the two police services."
Germans give hope of clue in search for Madeleine
McCann, 01 December 2013
Germans give hope of clue in search for Madeleine McCann
DETECTIVES hunting for Madeleine McCann have been given information about two German or Dutch-speaking men seen
acting suspiciously before she was kidnapped in Portugal.
Murray and Allan Hall Published: Sun, December 1, 2013
The potentially strong leads came after Kate and Gerry McCann made
a direct appeal on a German crime show, called Case Files XY...Unsolved, in October.
They were joined by Scotland
Yard's Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood, who asked German viewers for help.
Calls came in from people
who had been at the Ocean Club resort at Praia da Luz on the Algarve at the same time as the McCann family, on May 3, 2007.
The callers had information about the German or Dutch speaking men, but it is not known if they were able to provide names.
During the programme, 500 calls flooded in to a special team with a further 350 coming in during the following weeks.
The bitter emotions of a seventh Christmas without her beloved Madeleine
were evident on Kate's face as she forced herself into the yuletide spirit for the sake of twins, Sean and Amelie.
She joined thousands for the annual switching on of the Christmas lights in her home village, of Rothley, Leicestershire,
on Thursday evening.
She smiled as children played on a bouncy castle and went on rides, but there were other moments
when the pain of not having Madeleine there to share the early Christmas joy was clear to see.
With a protective
arm around the eight-year-old twins, Kate was cheered by warm words from friends and acquaintances who quietly support her.
Spy plane clue to Maddie mystery, 15
Spy plane clue to Maddie mystery Sunday
Express (paper edition)
James Murray INVESTIGATIONS EDITOR
[text as per online article]
TO PAGE 5
EXCLUSIVE: Nato spy plane 'may have photographed Madeleine McCann abduction'
A SPY plane on a Nato exercise may have captured an aerial image of the person who abducted Madeleine McCann, it was
claimed last night.
By: James Murray Published: Sun, December 15, 2013
A Portuguese military aircraft took photos of the Algarve coastline
on the day the three-year-old disappeared, says British military expert Philip Burden.
He claims the images
were clear enough to identify buildings and people's faces and were offered to Portuguese police when Nato officials later
learned of Madeleine's disappearance. Mr Burden said: "The aircraft may provide a new lead in the hunt for Madeleine.
During the early and late evening of May 3, 2007, the day Madeleine disappeared from the holiday resort of Praia da Luz, the
plane took aerial photos of that stretch of the Algarve.
"It was on a Nato training exercise and had been
used on similar missions over other European countries at other times."
Writer Mr Burden added: "According
to my source, strips of film were later passed to the Portuguese police following their appeal for information about Madeleine's
"I'm told that there were a number of low-level passes over the resort as part of a lengthy
photo reconnaissance training mission. Although the light was fading, people and buildings could be clearly seen."
Portuguese police thanked the Portuguese Air Force for sending the film at the time but the pictures were not evident
when secret police files were published later.
Asked to confirm or deny the claims, a Scotland Yard spokesman said:
"We are not giving a running commentary."
If good images exist, they could prove vital in establishing
what was going on at crucial times around the Ocean Club holiday complex. Spy cameras are so sophisticated they can pick out
the registration number of vehicles and, in ideal conditions, tell the colour of a person's eyes.
come at an emotional time for Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, as they prepare to celebrate Christmas with
eight-year-old twins Sean and Amelie, with their missing daughter very much at the centre of their thoughts.
Monday Kate was close to tears at a service at St Martin-in-the-Fields church in London arranged by the charity Missing People,
for whom she is an ambassador.
Kate read the words of the Billie Holliday classic I'll Be Seeing You, which
moved many in the packed congregation. The lyrics, particularly poignant at this time of year, include the lines: "I'll
be seeing you, in all the old familiar places."
Kate's reading gave strength and encouragement to other
parents facing the same heart-wrenching void in their lives.
Charity patron Sir Trevor McDonald, the former ITV
newsreader, welcomed guests to the service marking the 20th anniversary of the charity.
Sir Trevor said: "It represents a time, if only brief, for those
of us who have not been personally affected by the disappearance of someone we love to join in solidarity with those of you
here tonight who are living in limbo, with all the grief and hope that brings."
A particularly moving part
of the service came when Peter Boxell spoke of his feelings over the disappearance of his son Lee, who vanished in Sutton,
Surrey, in 1988, aged just 15. Mr Boxell said: "For many months, Christine and I were afraid to leave the house in case
we missed a call from Lee."
To donate £3 to Missing People's Home For Christmas Appeal text Hope1
An insight into the background of 'disgruntled and
unreliable former RAF employee ... Philip Burden':
UK News: RAF tracked huge UFOs at
24,000 mph, April 1998
[CNI News thanks Graham Birdsall and Colin Andrews for contributing to this story; and Skye Turrell and Rebecca
Keith for their assistance.]
Britons awoke to sensational news headlines on Monday, April 27, 1998. "24,000
MPH UFO BUZZES BRITAIN" said the Daily Mail. "RAF SPOTS SPEEDING UFOs WITH NEW RADAR" said the London Daily
Express. Other papers and TV news ran similar stories.
Citing unnamed sources within the RAF, the British press
reported that sensitive new radars at RAF Fylingdales had tracked a "battleship-sized" triangular UFO over the North
Sea. Reportedly, the Dutch Air Force also tracked the mystery behemoth. The same UFO was later observed heading out over the
Atlantic Ocean, according to the Daily Mail.
Immediate efforts by several British UFO researchers to confirm the
story were met with firm denials by RAF spokesmen, who stated that the apparent source
of the story was a disgruntled and unreliable former RAF employee named Philip Burden.
However, at least
one British news reporter involved in the story assured UFO researcher Graham Birdsall, editor of UFO (UK) magazine, that
the main source of the story was not Burden but a reliable RAF insider.
Meanwhile, other UK investigators proposed
that the story was intentionally planted to head off discovery of top-secret, super-advanced military aircraft thought to
be flying from several British military bases.
At week's end, as this issue of CNI News goes to press, the
RAF-UFO story remains unresolved, with several competing theories in play.
Here are excerpts from the April 27
story in the Daily Mail, followed by a sample of commentary from several UK researchers.
According to Science Correspondent
David Derbyshire of the Daily Mail:
"The RAF has tracked a UFO 'as big as a battleship' off the coast
of Britain, military sources revealed yesterday. They said the massive craft was tracked flying in a zig-zag pattern at 17,000
mph over the North Sea. It then accelerated to 24,000 mph and zoomed off towards the Atlantic.
air force also tracked the UFO, but two F-16 fighters scrambled to intercept the object were unable to keep up, it is claimed.
"RAF officials are said to be baffled by the object, spotted by the Ministry of Defence long-range listening
station on Fylindales moor in North Yorkshire.
"'It was definitely under control, judging by the various
maneuvres executed,' said a source. 'It appeared to be triangular and was around the size of a battleship (about 900
"Radar records of the craft are due to be presented to science and military experts around
the world, who will examine how to exploit space for military purposes at a conference at RAF College, Cranwell, Lincolnshire,
in June. Other tapes of the UFO -- thought to have been made during the last two years -- are being withheld because they
give too much information about the radar base's scanning ability.
"However, military chiefs may release
a second series of tapes, reported to show 12 UFOs changing shape in mid-flight.
"The latest theory gaining
popularity among some dedicated UFO watchers is that the military deliberately release stories about UFOs as a "smokescreen"
-- and that witnesses are really seeing top-secret experimental aircraft."
CNI News was first alerted to this
story by noted crop circle researcher Colin Andrews, who spent much of the day on April 27 trying to reach UK officials who
might shed further light on the sensational claims. Andrews sent this update to CNI News:
"After leaving many
messages and trying contacts in the MOD in London, I have eventually spoken with Mr. Alan Patterson in the MOD Press office
and in the last few minutes another source, regarding today's stories in UK national newspapers.
Mr. Alan Patterson what this story was about. and was it true? He told me that it was not true and that they knew exactly
who had put it out. 'He goes around doing this kind of thing,' he said.
"'He worked it round a
nugget of truth,' [Patterson said]. 'There is going to be a military seminar, which will also be open to civilians,
that will be held at the RAF Cranwell staff college to discuss certain defense issues... They will not be talking about Flying
Saucers... [but] how we might defend ourselves against missiles from space.'
"I guess we will have to
wait for the unknown senior military officer to update us on who is behind the missiles from space, which concerns them,"
Noted researcher and publisher Graham Birdsall also spent much of April 27 trying to get to
the bottom of this story. He posted a progress report to the internet late in the day:
"During the last 24
hours considerable attention has been focused on the revelation in some of the British press that information concerning the
tracking of one and more UFOs by RAF Fylingdales is to be discussed at a space seminar at RAF Cranwell.
have spent much of that time attempting to track down those responsible for the release, and am now able to confirm that the
story is allegedly bogus.
"Much of the credit must go to my colleague, author and UFO researcher Nick Redfern,
who was able to speak directly with Alan Patterson, RAF Press Officer at the Ministry of Defence in London.
Patterson said that 'the only truthful part' that appeared in the press was that concerning the staging of a space
seminar. The UFO angle, and everything connected with it, was not true, he said.
"The story had been concocted
by a former MoD employee, whom he named as PHILIP BURDEN.
"'He was employed as a civilian within the MoD
in London, but he left under a cloud,' said Mr. Patterson.
"No one can be quite certain at this moment
in time, but in light of the extraordinary comments from Mr. Patterson, the focus of attention has firmly switched to what
appears to be the central figure in these developments -- just who is Philip Burden?"
While Birdsall continued
his inquiry into the elusive "Philip Burden," others in the UK research community took a decidedly different approach.
An influential faction with British Ufology is committed to the theory that nearly all (if not all) legitimate UFO
reports can be explained as sightings of super-secret human aircraft. A leading spokesman for this group, Tim Matthews, was
quick to weigh in with his analysis. Excerpts follow:
"Despite the Ministry of Defence position that UFOs
are 'of no defence significance' the story was said to have been leaked by a 'military source'. This was almost
impossible to believe and the story could be seen at best as a cover for the operation and testing of secret military aircraft
in the North Sea and over the Atlantic.
"Despite their sophistication, it is not true that the latest Phased
Array Radar systems would be able to identify the shape of a UFO -- even one '900 feet' in length -- at anything approaching
the speeds reported. A science correspondent should have known this simple fact.
"The Daily Mail KNEW (!)
that the story was nonsense before they printed it and it will be noticed that this tabloid has put out a great deal of alien/ET-type
material in recent months.
"Just last week a diamond-shaped wing-wing aircraft was spotted by a trained observer
off the Western Scottish coast near Campbeltown not far from RAF Macrahanish, previously rumoured to be a base of operations
for a number of secret aircraft and still a NATO standby base.
"I have spoken to serving RAF personnel who
have witnessed the operation of large triangular aircraft from RAF Boscombe in February 1997.
"In 1993/4 an
aircraft not unlike the US Advanced Airborne Reconnaissance System 'Tier 3' aircraft was reported to be operating
over the UK as part of a series of transatlantic demonstrations involving the RAF and elements of the aerospace industry.
According to US black projects researcher Dan Zinngrabe, a respected source, the aircraft cost over $150 million, used active
stealth features and was able to hover through the use of an advanced jet propulsion system which might have been ducted 'fan-in-wing'
"At this time, Nick Pope, former Secretariat Air Staff 2a UFO 'expert' went public with
a story that UFOs were of extraterrestrial origin and this was undoubtedly part of the cover story involving the MOD and the
"So whilst we have twaddle being put out in the tabloids, some UFO researchers are getting
to grips with the reality of secret military aircraft."
CNI News agrees that the U.S. Air Force, among others,
does fly super-secret aircraft that could be mistaken for UFOs; and further agrees that tabloids in the UK as well as the
United States certainly run "twaddle" on occasion. However, CNI News also acknowledges that many leading UFO researchers
on both sides of the Atlantic disagree with Matthews' apparent intent to explain all otherwise-unexplained UFO sightings
as super-secret military aircraft.
Controversy over the alleged RAF tracking of UFOs continues to unfold.
UFO (UK) magazine editor Graham Birdsall informed CNI News on April 30 that he had made further inquiries into the sources
of the RAF UFO story. Based on his latest update, it seems clear that the story is far from resolved. Excerpts from Birdsall's
"Alan Patterson, RAF Press Officer, claimed that the source of this story was a former
MoD civilian employee named Philip Burden -- someone who left their employment 'under a cloud'.
have since spoken with one of the journalists concerned, who stands by the story. Speaking off the record (his name and newspaper
are known to a clutch of researchers, including Nick Redfern, Nick Pope and Timothy Good), he told me that the original source
of this story was a senior serving RAF official, and not Mr. Burden.
"However, journalist David Clark (who
was an active UFO researcher before joining the Sheffield Star newspaper), has spoken with 'The Express' newspaper
journalist John Ingham, who also covered the story. Mr. Ingham has told David Clark that yes, Philip Burden was his primary
"Philip Burden, it transpires, was the former editor of 'RAF NEWS'.
reliably informed that since leaving RAF News, Philip Burden has provided the media with several stories, originating from
his time spent while editor of that publication, and for which he was paid.
"One of these referred to an alleged
UFO incident over Thailand, and took place during an official State Visit by the Queen. Allegedly, the RAF aerobatic team
(Red Arrows) had to cut short a flying display when the UFO appeared.
"We are, as you can well imagine, attempting
to clarify several important matters arising from these developments. Suffice to say, at least one senior newspaper correspondent
is standing by the story as it appeared last Monday.
"The only concession he is prepared to make, is that
the estimated speed of the UFO in question might now be in doubt, but he failed to expand on his reasoning.
for the 'battleship'-sized UFO, the 12 oval-shaped objects and radar tapes thereof? He maintains such references were
accurately reported, but expressed sympathy towards Alan Patterson's position, who, he stressed, had no option other than
to state official MoD policy on the UFO issue.
"Finally, for anyone thinking of attending the Space Symposium
at RAF Cranwell (4-5 June), admission doesn't come cheap. Tickets are priced at Pound220.00 (two hundred & twenty
pounds), and I'm not certain whether that's for one or both days.
"Last but not least, our journalist
friend suspects that the radar tapes, and all reference to them, 'will be pulled' from the dozen-or-so sessions schedule
to take place," Birdsall concluded.
CNI News will report further developments, if any, in our next edition.
Gonçalo Amaral discusses satellite
images that the PJ believed to be in the possession of the US authorities, 14 December 2010
Amaral discusses satellite images that the PJ believed to be in the possession of the US authorities
14 December 2010
- Extract from interview
with SIC Noticias -
Pedro Mourinho - Would it have been possible to go further, in
gathering evidence, after what took place in September 2007, or not?
Gonçalo Amaral - As
I said before, the investigation is an investigation that is interrupted, an investigation that needs to be concluded. I believe
that it is possible to make progress, if it wasn't for lack of political will; now with political will, based on this
note - which is only a note as you said, but remains an important note nevertheless between two ambassadors, from one ambassador
to the US State Department, that must have the weight that it has. Hopefully now, it will also be disclosed those photos,
those satellite images that we believe to be in the possession of the US authorities, that we, the Portuguese police mentioned
first, and also requested, a request that was denied to us.
P.M. - In your understanding, what
could those satellite images reveal?
G.A. - They can reveal who was the person that carried the
child on that night on its way to the beach. According to an Irish couple's statement, with an alleged 80% certainty,
it was Gerald McCann himself. That could be the confirmation of that Irish couple's statement.
- And those images exist?
G.A. - We believe that, yes. In fact, the McCann couple themselves,
said, a few months ago, that they also searched for them; that they don't exist, someone else later stated that they don't
exist. It's possible that the site that has divulged the cable might also be able to release those images. That would
P.M. - In your opinion, if they exist, why weren't they yet revealed?
G.A. - Well, probably because they are a secret of state somewhere... In fact, the whole investigation
was a state secret in England. I remind you that there is documentation in that sense, referring that it is a state secret.
We do not understand why it is considered as a state secret. In question is the disappearance, and the likely death of a child,
and we still fail to understand why that is considered as state secrecy.
Madeleine McCann's abductor may
have been 'snapped by Nato spy plane', 16 December 2013
Madeleine McCann's abductor may have been 'snapped
by Nato spy plane' Daily Star
THE person who snatched missing Madeleine McCann may have been caught on camera by a Nato spy plane that was on a training
exercise at the time.
Published 16th December 2013
The Portuguese aircraft took aerial images of the Algarve coastline
where the three-year-old vanished.
British military expert Philip Burden claimed Nato had offered the pictures
to Portuguese police.
Speaking to The Sunday Express he said: "During the early and late evening of May 3,
2007, the day Madeleine disappeared from the holiday resort of Praia da Luz, the plane took aerial photos of that stretch
of the Algarve.
"It was on a Nato training exercise and had been used on similar missions over other European
countries at other times."
Mr Burden went on to say : "According to my source, strips
of film were later passed to the Portuguese police following their appeal for information about Madeleine's disappearance.
"I'm told that there were a number of low-level passes over the resort as part of a lengthy photo reconnaissance
"Although the light was fading, people and buildings could be clearly seen."
The shots, which are clear enough to see people's faces and pick out car registration numbers, could be crucial in locating
But despite Portuguese police thanking the Air Force for the the film, the pictures were not evident
when secret police files were published.
Asked to confirm or deny the claims, a Scotland Yard spokesman said: "We
are not giving a running commentary."
Daily Star paper edition: 'Spy
plane 'filmed Maddie's kidnap'', 16 December 2013
Spy plane 'filmed Maddie's
kidnap', 16 December 2013
by JERRY LAWTON,
Chief Crime Correspondent Monday, December 16, 2013
Madeleine McCann's abduction may have
been filmed by a spy plane, it was claimed yesterday.
A jet was on a Nato exercise above Praia da Luz
in Portugal at the time the three-year-old went missing in 2007.
And military sources have admitted that the Portuguese
aircraft was taking photographs of the Algarve coastline. British military expert Philip Burden said there was a chance the
plane could have filmed the fiend who snatched Madeleine while her parents Kate and Gerry dined with pals in a nearby tapas
He said any images taken by the spy plane would be of such high quality they could identify buildings and
people's faces. The images were offered to Portuguese police when Nato officials learned of Madeleine's disappearance,
but it is believed that detectives did not act on them.
Mr Burden said: "They could provide a new lead in
the hunt for Madeleine.
"On the day she disappeared the plane took aerial photos of that stretch of the Algarve.
"I'm told that there were a number of low-level passes over the resort as part of a lengthy photo training
"According to my source, strips of film were later passed to the Portuguese police following their
appeal for information about Madeleine's disappearance."
Police thanked the Portuguese Air Force for sending
the photos but they do not feature in official files on the case.
McCanns 'buoyed' by developments,
19 December 2013
Missing Madeleine McCann's mother has urged people to "spare a thought and prayer" for all families
similar to hers who find themselves unable to share Christmas with a loved one.
In a Christmas message on the FindMadeleine
website, Kate McCann said 2013 had passed particularly quickly but it would be a comfort if they could slow time "just
Mrs McCann thanked supporters and said she and husband Gerry were relieved and buoyed by this year's
developments, including Scotland Yard's review becoming an investigation, and the reopening of the case in Portugal.
British police launched their own investigation into Madeleine's disappearance earlier this year, called Operation
Grange, and made renewed appeals on television in the UK, Holland and Germany.
Madeleine, then aged three, went
missing from a holiday apartment where she was sleeping with her two younger siblings in Praia da Luz, Portugal, in 2007 as
her parents dined nearby with friends.
The Portuguese shelved their inquiry into her disappearance in 2008, but
in October said that a review had uncovered enough new information to justify reopening the case.
In her message,
Mrs McCann said: "This year seems to have passed particularly quickly - a sign undoubtedly of a very busy year.
"It would still be a comfort if we could slow time just a little.
"Thankfully however there have been
some very positive aspects with regards to Madeleine.
"The Metropolitan Police review becoming an investigation
and, more recently, the reopening of the case in Portugal.
"We are incredibly relieved and buoyed by these
developments and continue to hope for further collaboration in the near future with the possibility of a JIT (Joint Investigation
Team) between Portugal and the UK to enhance the search for our dear daughter.
"Once again we would like to
thank all our supporters for their commitment to Madeleine and their ongoing support of our efforts.
spare a thought and prayer for all families similar to ours who will be unable to share Christmas with a special loved one.
"We wish you a wonderful Christmas and a happy and peaceful 2014.
month, Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood thanked the public for thousands of messages received in the wake of new TV
appeals, saying that several holidaymakers who were in Praia da Luz when the little girl vanished had made contact with his
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe has said British and Portuguese police should join
together as one team in their investigations into what happened to Madeleine.
Speaking previously, he said: "One
thing we'd like to see in the future is a joint investigation team which comes under the European community.
"It is a possibility legally, and we're working together at a political level, and at a police and judicial level,
to see how we can construct that.
"If you're not careful, you end up doing things on an ad hoc basis,
and for us it would be better to have that type of arrangement.
"So that's what we're trying to get
agreement between the two governments and the two police services."
Kate McCann's Christmas message: Madeleine's
mum 'buoyed' by renewed efforts to find missing girl, 19 December 2013
Kate McCann's Christmas message: Madeleine's mum
'buoyed' by renewed efforts to find missing girl Daily Mirror
By Martin Fricker | Dec 19, 2013 11:37
Christmas message she said there had "thankfully been some very positive aspects" in the global search for Maddie
Kate McCann has told of her hope for missing daughter Madeleine
and said she is "buoyed"up by Scotland's Yard's efforts to find her kidnapper.
In a Christmas
message she said there had "thankfully been some very positive aspects" in the global search for Maddie.
The former GP said they included: "The Metropolitan Police review becoming an investigation and more recently the
reopening of the case in Portugal."
She added: "We are incredibly relieved and buoyed by these developments."
As Kate and husband Gerry face their seventh Christmas without Maddie, she told of their "continued hope"
that British police will join forces with Portuguese officers "for further collaboration in the near future."
The couple, both 45, from Rothley, Leics, want to see a "joint investigation team" between the UK and Portugal
"to enhance the search for our dear daughter."
Kate chose to write a brief message on the Find Maddie website on
the day it was revealed a nightclub had been blasted for posting photos of a reveller wearing a sick "advent calendar"
costume mocking the little girl's disappearance.
There has been a huge public backlash to the Maddie fancy
dress images taken at a Birmingham venue on Saturday.
Kate, keeping a dignified silence and ignoring the furore,
told how the year had been very busy and passed "particularly quickly".
She added: "It would still
be a comfort if we could slow time just a little."
Kate, an Ambassador for charity Missing People, urges:
"Please spare a thought and prayer for all families similar to ours who will be unable to share this Christmas with
a special loved one."
She used the website to thank all supporters for "their commitment to Madeleine
and their ongoing support of our efforts."
Kate and heart consultant Gerry believe their daughter, who would
now be aged 10, could still be alive. She vanished from a holiday apartment in Portugal's Praia da Luz in May 2007 just
days before her fourth birthday.
Kerry Needham's anger at Cameron cash
snub, 19 December 2013
Kerry Needham's anger at Cameron cash snub ITV (with video)
4:30pm, Thu 19 Dec 2013
The mother of Ben Needham says the Prime Minister has refused to give her son's case the same financial backing
as the McCann family, despite a plea from her MP for assistance.
Last month Kerry's MP, Angela Smith, asked
David Cameron whether the Needhams could get similar funds as those given to the McCann's in the search for their daughter.
The response has angered Kerry Needham, and Angela Smith says David Cameron could be accused of "favouring"
one family over another. She now wants a national unit to investigate the cases of children missing abroad.
can also reveal tonight that a new dossier reveals EIGHT sightings of a blonde boy with the same Greek family. Mark Witty
By Nigel Moore
- Extract -
Angela Smith: [asking question in Houses of Parliament] Two years
ago, the Prime Minister quite rightly...
Mark Witty: [voice over] In November, Angela Smith took
David Cameron slightly by surprise with an unannounced question on the case of Ben Needham, and why his family has not had
the same government support as the McCanns, who were given 37 full-time Metropolitan Police officers, and 6 in Portugal, at
a cost of £5million.
David Cameron: [answering Angela Smith's question] ...the government
should always stand by to help, which is what happened in the Madeleine McCann case, but I'll look at what she says and
see... see what I can do.
Mark Witty: [voice over] The Prime Minister replied to Angela Smith
acknowledging the case is 'heart-breaking' and adding that the National Crime Agency is supporting South
Yorkshire Police and the Greek authorities. Mr Cameron also pointed out that the Home Office had given a special
grant to allow the excavation in Kos last year but there was no mention of financing the Needham case in the same way he did
for the McCanns.
Angela Smith: Frankly, it's... it's
just not good enough. Clearly, far more has been done for... for the McCann investigation. Nobody wants to deny the McCanns
the support they're getting but there just isn't a level playing field and Cameron's done nothing to address that.
[sound bites over footage of Angela Smith typing]
There is further evidence to be investigated
in the Ben Needham case.
Cameron was hasty in doing what he did.
[return to interview]
He's being seen now to... to favour one family at the expense of others.
[voice over] Speaking earlier today in our studio, Kerry reiterated he call for parity with the support given to the McCanns.
Kerry Needham: We just want the same level of support and for South Yorkshire Police to have the
same resources - if finances, if that's what they need, you know, the... the level of backing, errm... you know, the...
you know, I don't want to be critical... I'm not being critical of... of the McCann family at all. I'm... what
I'm being critical on is the fact that, you know, Ben's been missing, errr... 22 years now, you know, and we've
never had this support from... from the British government and I think it... it just needs to take a closer look and... and
offer South Yorkshire Police his... his support, or the government's support, and whatever they need; give it to them.
October - Tax debt bailout announced [Review
of year], 24 December 2013
The month culminated with news that interest in the case of Madeleine McCann, missing since 3 May 2007,
gained renewed impetus following a decision by the Portuguese Attorney-General's office to order the re-opening of the
case it shelved in July 2008 due to lack of evidence.
It has also emerged that police in Portugal excluded the
possibility of Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, of having had any involvement in their daughter's disappearance.
A statement sent to The Portugal News explained: "The Public Prosecutor's Office has determined the re-opening
of the inquiry relating to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann following a proposal by the Polícia Judiciária
and due to the presentation of new elements which justify the continuation of the investigation."
case review has been underway in Portugal since January 2012, led by leading missing persons detective Helena Monteiro and
her team in Oporto, official lines of inquiry were closed in the summer of 2008 by the Attorney-General's office. At the
time, the office said that the case would only be re-opened "should new evidence emerge."
To date no
significant evidence has been forthcoming as a result of the re-opening of the case.
Kate and Gerry McCann and Madeleine's
Fund, 28 December 2013
In articles dated October 23 ("Madeleine
clues hidden for 5 years" and "Investigators had E-Fits five years ago", News) we referred to efits which
were included in a report prepared by private investigators for the McCanns and the Fund in 2008. We accept that the articles
may have been understood to suggest that the McCanns had withheld information from the authorities. This was not the case.
We now understand and accept that the efits had been provided to the Portuguese and Leicestershire police by October 2009.
We also understand that a copy of the final report including the efits was passed to the Metropolitan police in August 2011,
shortly after it commenced its review. We apologise for the distress caused."
Maddie cops' prime suspect blunder,
28 December 2013
cops' prime suspect blunder Daily Mirror (paper
They could have ruled out innocent man SIX years ago
BY TOM PETTIFOR Crime Correspondent Saturday, 28 December 2013
BUNGLING police chased the wrong suspect
for six years in the hunt for missing Madeleine McCann.
An innocent British dad told police in 2007 he
was the man in an e-fit seen carrying a child in a Portuguese resort.
But his evidence was overlooked. A source
said yesterday: "This doesn't look good."
FULL STORY: PAGES 4&5
text: WRONG MAN E-fit of 'prime suspect']
Madeleine McCann: Bungling
police had 'prime suspect' details for SIX YEARS without realising Daily Mirror
By Tom Pettifor | 28 Dec 2013 00:00
innocent dad came forward in 2007 but mistakenly remained the main focus of the hunt until this year when Scotland Yard detectives
tracked him down
Bungling police had the details of the "main suspect"
in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann for SIX YEARS without realising.
The innocent dad came forward in 2007
to say he was the person seen carrying a child in Portugal at the time the three-year-old vanished.
But the information
was overlooked and the British holidaymaker remained the main focus of the hunt until this year when Scotland Yard detectives
finally tracked him down.
The revelation will be a blow to Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry, as they endure
a seventh Christmas without their oldest daughter.
The unnamed dad – spotted in the Praia da Luz resort by
McCann family friend Jane Tanner at 9.15pm – was among a number of British witnesses who completed questionnaires for
Leicestershire police six years ago.
He is understood to have provided a detailed description of his movements
on the night, including the fact he had picked up his own two-year-old daughter from a crèche close to where Madeleine
But his 'alibi' was only looked at this year.
A source said: "He had been clear
then that he had picked her up at around the time of the sighting but for whatever reason he was not eliminated as a suspect.
The fact the details of the prime suspect have been known all along doesn't look good."
disappearance, Leicestershire police were responsible for collating all UK-based inquiries at the request of the Portuguese
It is not clear if the questionnaires were analysed by the British force or simply forwarded to Portugal.
Ms Tanner, a close friend of Kate and Gerry, previously told
officers that she saw the dark-haired man carrying away a child wearing pink floral pyjamas at 9.15pm on May 3, 2007.
One of the so-called "Tapas Seven", she had been dining with the McCanns in a nearby restaurant when their daughter
Her sighting meant that from 2007 onwards, Portuguese and British police presumed any abduction most
probably took place between 8.30pm, when the McCanns went to dinner, and 9.15pm.
The realisation that it was a
false lead has shifted detectives' focus on to a later sighting at 10pm when an Irish family reported seeing a man walking
towards the beach carrying a blonde girl in pyjamas.
The revelation was described by DCI Andy Redwood, the Met officer
leading the new investigation called Operation Grange, as a "revelation moment" when it was finally made by his
DCI Redwood said in October: "Our focus in terms of understanding what happened on the night of May
3 has now given us a shift of emphasis. We are almost certain that the man seen by Jane Tanner is not Madeleine's abductor.
"It takes us through to a position at 10pm when we see another man who is walking towards the ocean, close by
to the apartment, with a young child in his arms."
The innocent dad agreed to be pictured in the clothes he
wore in Praia da Luz at the time to prove he was the man in the police sketch previously seen as key to cracking the case.
His two-year-old's pink pyjamas, which were described by Ms Tanner,
were also brought to Scotland Yard to help prove his innocence.
The new prime suspect was spotted by Martin Smith
from Drogheda, Co Louth, as he returned to his apartment in Praia da Luz about 9.50pm.
He saw a British-looking
man carrying a motionless, barefoot girl in pyjamas. Madeleine was noted to be missing by Kate at 10pm.
family provided two efit images of the man more than five years ago. However, the sighting was viewed as too late to be significant
because of Ms Tanner's sighting– which is why the efits were only released publicly in a Crimewatch appeal broadcast
Detectives from Scotland Yard's Operation Grange said they received an "overwhelming response"
The programme featured a new reconstruction of the hours leading
up to the three-year-old's abduction.
In a statement, Kate and Gerry said at the time: "We are absolutely
delighted with the overwhelming public response to Crimewatch. We know that the public desperately want to help the search
for Madeleine. We are genuinely hopeful that one or more of these responses will lead to a major breakthrough in the investigation."
They added: "If anyone was in Praia da Luz around the time of Madeleine's abduction and has not spoken to
the Metropolitan Police, or if they know who any of the Efits might be, please have the courage to come forward and speak
to the police in confidence."
More than 1,000 people have come forward with fresh information and several
named the same man as the prime suspect.
Leicestershire Police yesterday refused to comment on the latest
A spokeswoman said: "The disappearance of Madeleine McCann is being investigated by the Metropolitan
Police and it would be inappropriate for us to comment."
A Scotland Yard spokesman said: "We are not
giving a running commentary."
A spokesman for the McCann's last night declined to comment saying it is
"a matter for Operation Grange."
Madeleine McCann: Anyone saying they
were carrying a child around when Maddy disappeared should have been investigated, 28 December 2013
Madeleine McCann: Anyone saying they were carrying a
child around when Maddy disappeared should have been investigated
Ex-Met Police chief Peter Kirkham says questions will be asked as
to why the relevance of the information was not recognised earlier
Ruled out: Original prime suspect in the Madeleine
McCann appeal PA
Scotland Yard have now concluded that the key sighting of a suspect carrying a child
at around 9.15pm was, in fact, a sighting of an innocent dad.
This has changed the entire timeline of the incident
and has opened up crucial new lines of enquiry.
Questions will be asked as to why the relevance of the information
was not recognised earlier.
While there may have been an oversight by Leicestershire Police, there are two things
we should remember.
They did not have access to all the material collected during the investigation and full responsibility
for the case remained with the Portuguese at that time.
In their liaison role, they may have simply forwarded
the questionnaires to Portuguese police without analysing them themselves.
Even if they did consider the content,
they may not have realised the relevance without access to all of the material.
The information should have been
recognised as of great relevance by the Portuguese police.
I would have expected any person saying they were innocently
carrying a child at around the relevant time and place to be investigated and cross-referenced with other witness accounts.
That said, in a high-profile investigation, so much information floods in that it is all too easy for a crucial item
to get lost.
At that time, the main focus of the investigation centred on the interpretation of the DNA evidence
which had been recently made available.
This may have led to other potential lines of enquiry being overlooked.
No matter what the explanation, the fact that this "new" witness was in the system all along illustrates
why case reviews are so important.
A review of all material, by new pairs of eyes and with the benefit
of hindsight, almost always identifies something which has been overlooked.
In this case, it appears to have changed
the basic understanding of what may have happened on Thursday, May 3, 2007.
Madeleine McCann: New mobile phone information
could hold key to child's disappearance, 31 December 2013
Madeleine McCann: New mobile phone information could
hold key to child's disappearance Daily Mirror
By Tom Pettifor | 31 Dec 2013 00:00
A new dossier of mobile phone calls is believed to contain numbers that have yet to be identified - and officers
hope they could provide vital new leads
Detectives are examining
mobile phone information they believe could hold the key to Madeleine McCann's disappearance.
are thought to have provided Scotland Yard with a list of calls made in and around the Ocean Club in Praia de Luz between
9pm and 10pm on May 3 2007 – the night the three-year-old vanished.
The dossier is believed to contain phone
numbers that have yet to be identified, and officers hope they could provide vital new leads.
to track down the registered owner of each phone, and check whether any are known sex offenders.
was sent to the Met in response to an "international letter of request" asking for assistance from foreign police
forces in 31 countries.
The requests are believed to relate to unidentified mobile phone numbers and it is the
first time they have been analysed in detail. The Met are preparing to send another letter of request soon, sources said.
Detectives and Crown Prosecution Service lawyers are believed to have prepared a string of ILORs but remain hopeful
that a joint probe can be established, rendering them unnecessary.
If an arrangement cannot be reached then it
is feared the British investigation could drag on for years and end up costing at least double the £5million already
Portuguese police revealed in October that their investigation was being restarted as a result of new lines
of inquiry emerging from their own internal review.
They had originally shelved their probe in 2008, the year
after Madeleine vanished, but supported the British-run inquiry.
Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood, the officer
spearheading the probe, revealed in October that the records could hold the key.
He said the analysis was a "targeted
attack on that data to see whether it can assist us".
He added: "We've got a data set of phone traffic.
Within that phone traffic, you can see we've got some of those numbers we can attribute to people, but a large number
of them we can't ...
"A lot of the focus is not necessarily to find a suspect, but also witnesses. We're
trying to understand who was there for a range of reasons."
Portuguese police have always had the phone records
but they have never been examined in such detail.
The Met is now examining 41 persons of interest, including 15
A Met police spokesman said: "We are not giving a running commentary. However we will issue
details of any new ILOR issued to the Portuguese authorities."