In an amazing outpouring of support,
British people donating to an online
appeal have raised almost €46,000 to
help former Portuguese detective Gonçalo
Amaral stand his corner against the
parents of Madeleine McCann.
As newspapers have reported throughout
the world, Amaral has been slapped with
a €600,000 bill for the pain and anguish
his book ‘The
Truth of the Lie’ caused Madeleine’s
parents, Kate and Gerry.
In a poignant interview with Portuguese
Nova Gente, Amaral explained how the
only thing keeping him alive since the
verdict that went against him was his
heart. “My life is gone,” he said.
But he hadn’t bargained on the sheer
volume of support, waiting to be rallied
to his cause by a 22-year-old single mum
from Birmingham, who was only 14 when
Madeleine went missing from apartment 5a
in the Ocean Club, in Praia da Luz.
In six whirlwind weeks, almost 2,000
people have dug into their pockets, some
again and again with tiny amounts,
others occasionally with lump sums of
£1000 at a time.
As we clocked off for the weekend, the
fund was one person short of 2,000, with
the amount collected standing at
£32,675. Leanne Baulch, the young woman
behind the initiative, was “amazed”. “I
never imagined we would get this far,”
she told us.
The money now will all be ploughed into
Amaral fighting his appeal, lodged
earlier this month, and likely to cost
“at least £40,000”, explained Ms Baulch.
The long-running civil court case was
lodged against Amaral by the McCanns in
2009 after he wrote his book explaining
the theory that Madeleine had not been
abducted at all.