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Madeleine: Diary 'Leaked', Papers Claim

Original Source: SKY: 13 SEPTEMBER 2007
Updated: 21:02, Thursday September 13, 2007
Portuguese newspapers are claiming to have seen Kate McCann's diary and have published what they say are extracts.

The notes talk about how all her energy is taken up by the children - especially Madeleine, who is very active.

The papers claim police saw the diary lying open in the villa the McCanns rented after Madeleine went missing.

They say there was no diary entry on May 3 when the four-year-old disappeared.

However, Sky News' crime correspondent Martin Brunt is sceptical about the authenticity of the excerpts.

"There has been lots of speculation in the Portuguese press and the fact there are no direct quotes in the story makes me a little suspicious," he said.

The claims also include reports of British sniffer dogs detecting the scent of a corpse on a route that led from the Ocean Club to the church in Praia da Luz.

The scent was also picked up on Mrs McCann's shirt and jeans and on the Cuddle Cat toy, it is alleged.

Meanwhile, French newspaper France Soir claims to have seen "hard evidence" that Madeleine is dead.

It said scientific analysis of bodily fluids found in the McCanns' hire car showed Madeleine had ingested large quantities of sleeping pills which would have caused "an overdose".

Sky News has learned that Portuguese officials are asking British police to seize crucial items of evidence from the McCanns' family home.

It is understood detectives already have Mrs McCann's private diary.

Brunt said they will examine the diary to probe her "state of mind" in the weeks following Madeleine's disappearance.

It is thought they may also take Gerry McCann's laptop and Cuddle Cat - Madeleine's favourite toy - which has become an iconic image of the case.

Family spokesman David Hughes said he believed Cuddle Cat had already undergone forensic testing.

Mr McCann took the laptop with him when the family flew home from Portugal on Sunday, and has used it to write his regular blog on the Find Madeleine website.

Meanwhile, their family's spokeswoman Justine McGuinness has explained why the McCanns have remained silent over the past days - in stark contrast to their earlier publicity campaign.

She said: "Kate and Gerry can't talk to people at the moment because of their status, and they are trying to observe Portuguese law."

They have not spoken publicly since Sunday, when Mr McCann categorically denied that he or his wife had anything to do with their daughter's disappearance.

This week, detectives passed their 4,000-page dossier of evidence in the case to Algarve-based public prosecutor Jose Cunha de Magalhaes e Meneses.

He immediately ordered that the 10 files should go before a judge.

The McCanns are facing the prospect of being charged over their daughter's disappearance after police named them as "arguidos", or formal suspects, during questioning last Friday.


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