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M F Threads : MF - All the relevant PT & other articles in here
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 Message 1 of 3 in Discussion 
From: MSN Nicknametin-lizzy  (Original Message)Sent: 2/23/2008 12:36 PM
All the relevant PT & other articles in here
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Joined: 08 Aug 2007
Posts: 300
 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:10 pm    Post subject: All the relevant PT & other articles in here   
With all those new threads popping up, I keep seing all the relevant info is going down and people keep coming with very similar questions and doubts.
So I thought it would be useful to have a thread gathering the most relevant pieces on the PT press (or pieces of the smear campaign, for those irreductibly dense).
First, the famous first big article in SOL:
Pact of Silence
Madeleine’s parents and the friends with whom they spent their holidays in PDL are suspects in the inquiry. There are contradictory versions about the night of the kidnapping, and an assumed pact of silence in the group
A few kilometres from Lagos, in the Ocean Club resort at Praia da Luz, the faint illumination further densifies the climate. At the reception, which leads to the Tapas restaurant, there is nobody. Getting inside is easy.
It’s 9.30 p.m. If we were to believe the several members of the McCann’s holiday group, and after several mismatching versions, at this time Madeleine was being carried out of her apartment by a dark-haired man, who would be around 35 years old.
From the same table where the group of nine had dinner on that evening, one tries, in vain, to observe the apartment’s front ?a ground floor apartment that faces the restaurant. A linoleum screen on the side of Tapas and the corridor of bushes that follows the limits of the apartment’s back yards prevents any vigilance to that level.
The choice of Algarve as a holiday destination would come to change their lives. Everything was arranged with three other couples, with whom they used to travel. Some of them had recently been to Greece, with their children, and the Mark Warner agency, the same that prepared their trip to the Algarve, had done their itinerary for the islands. According to their reports, the hotel where they stayed had a baby listening service ?a service that is assured by four or five members of staff who would control the children while the adults dined, by listening through doors and windows to confirm that everything inside was quiet.
At the Tapas bar, from bartenders to staff from the Kid Club, criticism is whispered: “We have a creche where they left their children for most part of the day, where they could be until 11.30 p.m. without spending another Euro. They could also have used our baby-sitters, who stay with the children in their rooms until 1 p.m. In this case, they would have to pay an extra fee, but these people looked like they could afford it? an employee comments, concluding that “this was a very strange group, that never stayed with their children?
The children’s routine
The story of Madeleine looks like a tangled ball of wool. In the last days of April, Kate and Gerry, both 39 and doctors, arrive with their friends in Praia da Luz. The weather is not very good, but the group makes the best of it. The children seem to exist outside of the adults?world. In the morning, Kate would take Madeleine, almost 4, and the 2-year old twins, to the Kid Club. The other couples in the group did the same. While the little ones entertained themselves with collages and paintings, the group divides itself between tennis and jogging until lunchtime. In the creche, the girl’s picture is taken: “She was shy and had some difficulty in adapting to the group. She always stayed close to the english children she already knew?
It is at lunchtime that the families socialize a bit. After a short nap, the children go back to the Kid Club, while the parents use the activities that the club offers. They only get to meet again in the late afternoon, when the children’s dinner is served. Before 8 p.m., Madeleine and her siblings, who seem to function like a clock, are already asleep. Half an hour later, the group of friends meets at Tapas. The staff remember that they only leave at midnight: “They were very lively and drank a bit too much. I didn’t even realize they had children, because I never saw them around?
Mathew Oldfield, one of the elements of the group, is back in England. He reacts with surprise upon the contact of Sol, but he does not avoid the conversation: “We drank. We were on holidays. So what??
And thus the days followed one upon another, at the Ocean Club. The holiday week is almost over and the group’s spirit does not change. Nobody had noticed until then, how the children were kept at a distance.
The most reliable way to undrestand what happened on May 3, when Madeleine disappeared, is to analyze the various versions that emerged.
It would have been 10 p.m. when Kate decided to check the children at the apartment. This is the only moment in the story that gathers consensus. Madeleine had vanished from her bedroom and the twins were sleeping like nothing had happened. The mother was back at the restaurant in one leap. She was disoriented.
PJ called two hours later
In seconds, the resort is in turmoil. The group’s four men and the club’s employees check every corner. They seem to be oblivious of the essential: to call the authorities. GNR is the first to arrive at the scene, but the news only reach Policia Judiciaria (PJ) more than two hours later. The first explanations arise. Where were the parents when the child disappeared? Gerry explains that, inspired in the scheme that some of the friends had used on their holidays in Greece, the nine members of the group took turns in checking on the children with some regularity.
This is the beginning of a story that will change in many chapters. Gerry starts by saying that he first left the table to check on the children around 9.05 p.m. When he entered the apartment the children were fine, he just noticed that the door to their bedroom was partially open. He looked at the window, which was closed, just as the shutters, and relaxed.
Ten minutes later, his friend Jane Tanner, who went around the apartments, crossed ways with a dark-haired man who was walking in the opposite direction, carrying a child. She didn’t make any connections either.
A few minutes later, Mathew Oldfield enters the room, sees the McCann children fast asleep, and notices nothing out of the ordinary. It is at 10 p.m. that Maddie’s mother discovers her daughter has disappeared. The window was wide open and the shutters were up.
To GNR, who is in the area with sniffer dogs to search for the child, this is a highly unlikely scenario. One of the military assures: “This is an extremely silent area, where there are practically no passing cars. That shutter was very difficult to lift from the outside, and would have made a lot of noise. It would have been a lot easier to use the door, but there were no signs of a break-in?
This was just one of the reasons why the group became suspicious in the eyes of the investigators. Russell O’Brien, Jane Tanner’s husband, is already back in England, but he knows he could be summoned back to Portugal for a deposition anytime. Over the phone with Sol, he tries to keep his british phlegm: “It is normal that we are suspects, and the DNA test is a consequence thereof. We were the closest people involved?
The conversation always comes back to the same issue: the night of the disappearance. The account of that last dinner has disparate versions among the group’s members. Some swear that someone left the table every half hour to check on the kids; other reduce that time to half of it. Some say control is made window by window; others say the adults entered each other’s apartments.
One of the employees that was on duty that evening does not remember a lot of movement: “I only remember a tall, grey-haired man getting up once from the table? It was Russell, who, two days earlier, also had attended dinner.
An aerobic instructor from the resort entertains the dinner guests at Tapas with a ‘Quiz? At 9.30 p.m. the game ends, and Gerry invites her to their table, where she stays for half an hour. During that time, as she later confided to friends, nobody left the table, but one of the chairs was vacant. Najova Chekaya refuses to talk to Sol. And Russell, when the questions start to surround him, loses his sympathy: “I have nothing further to tell you. I am not going to dishonor the compromise I assumed with Kate and Gerry. They want to control all imfornation that is disclosed?
Gerry changes his version several times, but he maintains that the door to his children’s room was open. Mat revokes his first statement: when he entered Madeleine’s room, the door was open and there was more light, as if the shutters had been raised. Here starts to develop the theory that there was already someone inside the apartment. Which reinforces Jane Tanner’s version (that she saw a man carrying a child).
Only Jane saw the man carrying a child
But there is a witness whose deposition contradicts this theory. Jeremy Wilkins ?a tv producer who had met Maddie’s father during their holidays and used to play tennis with him ?was walking his eight months old son at that time. He met Gerry, who went out through the apartment’s back door after having checked on the children, and the two man exchanged a brief conversation. At that time, if one is to believe the first accounts, Jane would have left Tapas in the direction of the apartment’s main entrance, and would have crossed paths with both of them. “It was a very narrow road and I think it would have been almost impossible to walk by without me taking notice? Jeremy says, pointing out the fact that he saw no man carrying a child, as Jane states.
But Jane continues to guarantee that, at the top of the street, she saw a man with a child in his arms.
Although the area is scarcely lit, and the situation did not make her suspicious at the time, she describes the beige trousers, the dark thick jacket and the black classic-style shoes in a detailed way. Once again, Jeremy disagrees: “If that happened, I would have likely seen it?
On the next day, the media circus was fully installed. The first reports are on Sky News first thing in the morning, even before portuguese press takes hold of the story. Journalists and locals dispute the information. Robert Murat, the son of an english mother and a portuguese father, with little luck in business, does not waste the opportunity. He moves from failed businessman into the role of a translator for the press and the police. Some british journalists, after sucking him to the bones, start suspecting his availability.
The Murat contradiction
Contrarily to the GNR elements and the Ocean Club’s staff, who participated in the searches on the night before and assure they did not see Murat around, Gerry and some of his friends guarantee that he was there. And thus he becomes an arguido.
Gerry and Kate’s friends, who are interrogated tightly by the PJ over almost a month, refuse to clarify this contradiction, when asked by Sol. “We have a pact. This is our matter only. It is nobody else’s business? says David Payne, another element with the group. Minutes after we tried to contact Kate, Gerry, in a fury, calls the Sol journalist: “What do you think you are doing? Do you think you’re better than the portuguese police? I’m going to forward your contact to PJ and you will have to explain yourselves?

Following posts will collect other translations of PT press.
Hope you find it "not unhelpful"
Last edited by Curiouser on Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:11 pm; edited 1 time in total
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:13 pm    Post subject:    
Last Saturday's SOL article, including the last timeline available:

Here it is, posted by Astro......

in Sol on August 11:

Under the magnifying glass
SOL reveals what the McCanns and their friends say they did on the night that Maddie disappeared. Who would have died before dinner.
by: Felicia Cabrita and Margarida Davim
translated by: astro
The tests that were made this week on the car that was used by the McCann couple, indicates that the police admits that Maddie’s body may have been moved from the place where it was initially hidden, over the last two months.
As Sol could conclude, the investigators look for clues of the cadaver in the Renault Scenic, which was rented by Maddie’s parents after the child’s disappearance. As the abduction possibility is set aside, authorities bet on the reconstitution of the route that was taken to hide the body. During this week, PJ and elements of the english police ?accompanied by the c-ockers that SOL surprised on the beach and in a valley that is close to the resort, last week ?performed several diligences inside and outside several houses. The authorities seem to have concluded that Maddie’s body is buried in the vicinity of the apartment that was occupied by the McCanns, or was thrown into the sea.
The english dogs marked the death inside the apartment. And portuguese dogs did not find any trace on the outside. This fact is devalued by Pinto da Costa, a forensic doctor, who says a perfume on the body is enough to lose the dogs. A source of GNR that was heard by SOL says “the dogs only detected a movement of the child from the bedroom to another location inside the apartment?
At the same time, it is still unknown at what time the alleged crime would have taken place. A specialist that was contacted by SOL guarantees: “In order for the dogs to mark the body, it would have had to remain in the area where it died for at least two hours? If so, and considering that Maddie’s parents say they left for dinner at 8.30 p.m., the girl would have died shortly before that ?given the fact the alarm to her disappearance was given at 10 p.m.
Blank hours
It is in these four hours ?between the time the McCann couple picked up their children at the creche and the time Kate noticed her daughter was missing ?that lies th solution to this mystery. This is also where the inconsistencies are found, between the versions that are reported by the couple and their friends.
The four friends couples, most of them doctors, always said they took turns among them to watch their children (either by listening through windows or by entering each other’s apartments) every half hour.
On that night, if the mismatching versions of the group are to be believed, there were up to three persons doing the same job. It is in this context that witness Jane Tanner appears, who is married to Russell O’Brien. He only appeared in the Tapas restaurant almost at the end of the dinner, saying his daughter, who is the same age as Maddie, was feeling ill. Jane, on the other hand, would have left the restaurant to check on her daughter and verify the other children at approximately 9.20 p.m. And she walked a narrow, scarcely lit road.
On her way, she passes Maddie’s father, who is talking to a friend, Jeremy Wilkins ?a tv producer whom he met at the resort’s tennis court. When Jane passed them, the two men were close to a small iron gate that leads to the back entrance of the apartment: “It’s impossible. I didn’t see her? Jeremy said.
That gate, which accesses a small patio, and according to Maddie’s father, was used by him and Matthew Oldfield to check on the children. In that moment, the girl’s father noticed that the door to the children’s room was more open and that there was more light than usual. Yet, he thought that Maddie, disturbed by her siblings?crying, would have gone into her parents?room, leaving the door open. But he did not check whether his daughter was there.
With these elements, which were corroborated by Matthew, Maddie’s father left the possibility that at that time the abductor was already inside the room, in the air.
Contributing to the kidnapping idea, there was also Jane Tanner’s version, who says she saw a man carrying a child, shortly after she crossed ways with Maddie’s father and Jeremy. But the tv producer ?who was spending his holidays in a neighbouring apartment block ?also dismisses that possibility: “I did not see any man carrying a child?
Jane’s testimony was one of the pieces of information that would later be used to incriminate Murat, given the fact that the arguido’s house is on the street where the english woman says the man was walking to.
Jane walked approximately 5 metres from the individual who was carrying the child. Although there was little light, she describes him with detail. The man, looking caucasian, was wearing beige trousers, black shoes and was covered in a thick jacket. According to her words, “he didn’t even look like a tourist?
In spite of the proximity to the person who would later originate the first drawing of the supposed kidnapper of Maddie, Jane, who socialized with the girl on a daily basis, did not recognize her. According to her statement, the child was wearing pink pyjamas, seemed to be asleep and was barefoot. This was the detail that she found the strangest.
That night, after Kate discovered the disappearance of her daughter (and after Jane supposedly confirmed with another friend that Maddie was wearing a pyjamas of the same colour), Jane Tanner made no comment. “I did not want to worry Kate even further? she later guaranteed.
A witness that was contacted by SOL at that time seems to indicate that Jane, although she never crossed ways with the tv producer, may have described the right person, so if the suspect crossed ways with someone on his way, the versions would match.
The last diligences that PJ has performed do however put aside the doubts that were on Robert Murat, given the fact that the searches did not find anything that incriminates him.
The ‘movie?of the night
After collecting all the elements, and crossing information from various sources, SOL’s investigation makes a reconstitution of the night that Maddie disappeared.
6 p.m. The McCanns pick their children up at the Ocean Club’s creche.
7.30 Madeleine and the twins go to bed.
8.30 Gerry and Kate arrive at the Tapas restaurant.
8.45 Russell, Matthew and Rachel Oldfield go to the restaurant.
8.55 David and Fiona Payne also arrive at the Tapas. According to David, all the elements of the group were already there. But Rachel assures that Matthew arrived two or three minutes after the Paynes.
9.00 Matthew went to check on the children.
9.05 Gerry left the Tapas to check on his children. When he is returning to the dinner, he meets Jeremy Wilkins ?an english man he met during the holidays ?and chats with him for ten minutes. Neither Gerry nor Jeremy notice Jane or the suspicious man that she says she saw, although they were all on the same narrow street at the same time.
9.10 Jane went to check on her children and notices a man walking hastily, carrying a child. She memorizes the suspect, but fails to recognize Maddie.
9.25 Gerry returns to Tapas. Russell told PJ that at this time Matt and he went to check the children.
9.30 Matthew goes into Madeleine’s apartment. Russell O’Brien leaves the restaurant at the same time. In the first statements, Matt does not refer anything strange in Madeleine’s room and Russell fails to explain that he stayed in his apartment because his younger daughter was feeling sick. Later, Matt said that he noticed more light in the McCanns?apartment and Russell revealed his daughter was vomiting.
9.35 Matthew Oldfield returned to Tapas.
9.45 Jane Tanner says at this time ?not at 9.30 ?Matthew and Russell left the restaurant.
9.55 Russell returns to the restaurant.
10.00 Jane goes to the apartment and notices her daughter has disappeared. She goes back to Tapas and raises the alarm. Everybody leaves the restaurant, except Dianne Webster.
10.05 Dianne Webster goes into Maddie’s room. The twins are sleeping.
22.15 Dianne returns to Tapas, to pick up her purse and her camera.
The McCanns?friends that the police is watching
Rachel and Matthew Oldfield
Rachell Manpilly is 36 and she is married to Matthew Oldfield. The couple has a daughter, who was only 18 months old when Madeleine McCann disappeared. But now even so the Oldfields asked for the Ocean Club’s babysitting service. Matthew met Gerry McCann when both doctors worked together at a hospital in Leicester. Matt has a pending accusation for medical negligence in that hospital, after a late diagnosis resulted in the death of a patient. This was not the first time the Oldfields spent their holidays with this group. The last trip had been to Greece ?where they also stayed in a resort of the Ocean Club’s group ?but that time Gerry and Kate did not accompany them.
Dianne Webster
63 year old Dianne Webster is the oldest element of the group. This credit controller is the mother of Fiona Payne and the grandmother of two of the children from the group that was spending their holidays in the Ocean Club.
To the portuguese police, Dianne told she could not precise which elements abandoned the Tapas restaurant during dinner, on the night that Madeleine disappeared. Fiona’s mother is also the only witness that said each couple was responsible for their own children, and did not enter their friends?apartments.
After Kate entered the restaurant ?visibly upset and yelling “they’ve taken our Madeleine??Dianne was the only one who stayed seated at the Tapas?table. Which she only left five minutes later.
David and Fiona Payne
It was David Payne who organised the group’s holidays at Praia da Luz. The reservation was made over the internet, after a good experience with the Ocean Club’s group, in Greece. This was the second time that David came to Portugal. The first time was eleven years ago, before he got married.
David and Fiona have been together for seven years and are both doctors, like the McCanns?friends. The couple has two children and they were the only ones in the group who used the babyphone system to keep watch over the children during dinners ?which always took place without the small ones.
Fiona was back in the Algarve on July 11, along with Rachel and Russell, in order to give their third deposition to PJ.
Russell O’Brien and Jane Tanner
Russell O’Brien is a doctor and lives in Exeter ?the same english city where the sister of Robert Murat lives.
After studying at the same university as David Payne, O’Brien met Jane, with whom he has two children. The friendship between Russell and David is so strong that he chose him as his wedding godfather when he made his relationship with Fiona official, in Italy.
Coincidentally, Jane and Kate became pregnant at the same time, as the O’Brien couple’s oldest daughter is exactly the same age as Maddie.
Jane Tanner is one of the key witnesses in the ‘Madeleine case? given the fact she says she saw a suspicious man, walking with a child in his arms, on the night of the disappearance. Jane describes the individual with extreme precision, although she was not capable to recognize the child he was carrying. The man that Jane saw has dark, thick hair and is 1.70 m tall.
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:17 pm    Post subject:    
An interesting article in Correio da Manhã, Saturday 11th, translated by me:
Alípio Ribeiro, national director of Polícia Judiciária, received a call from John Buck, british ambassador in Portugal, on the night Madeleine disapeared from the Ocean Club, on May 3rd..
Around 23h00, roughly two hours after the child's disppearance had been communicated to the police, Alípio Ribeiro had to interrupt a private dinner in order to listen to the diplomat. That phone call was the first sign that the british were very keen on accompannyng closely the PJ's actions, and in forcing the investigations to follow the kidnap theory.
“The PJ lost too much time investigating the kidnap? a source connected to the investigation told CM. The pressure of the british diplomacy apparently only slowed down after the arrival in Portugal of british police agents who gave support to the redirectioning of the investigation to the possibility of murder. The biological evidence found in the apartment were decisive in the changing the inquiry's direction, or, at least, for the PJ to admit publiclly that change
The decision to further investigate the possibility of the child's death in the Ocean Club ?and in consequence the reeavaluation of the depositions made by the parents and their friends ?was also taken taking the opinions of the british police agents into consideration. The interview that Olegário Sousa gave yesterday to BBC and ITN was done in accordance with those agents.
The choice of these two television channels was motivated by the indignation that the british agents themselves felt regarding the accusations that have been made by the british press to the PJ. The BBC e ITN have been treating this case with more distance and imparciallity, and that was the reason for which they were priviledged tothe interview.
Olegário Sousa admitted for the first time in public the possibility of Madeleine being dead. A position that leaves the McCanns at the center investigations, a situation that is being managed "with soft gloves" by the portuguese police.
The couple has benefitted from the help of powerfull friends. The first spokesperson for the McCanns, Clarence Mitchell, who organized the several trips Maddie's parents did over various countries, is now an aide of Gordon Brown.
Brown supported the Maddie cause from the begining, because Jill Renwick, a long time friend of the couple, is neighbour of Jonh Brown, brother of the british prime-minister.
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 Message 2 of 3 in Discussion 
From: MSN Nicknametin-lizzySent: 2/23/2008 12:37 PM

Joined: 08 Aug 2007
Posts: 300
 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:22 pm    Post subject:    
And one of the most well thought opinion articles by a reputed criminalist and former PJ investigator (today Mayor of Santarém, a town some 100 km north of Lisbon), originally posted by BB02 (don't know who translated it=.
The Speculation
From the first hour on, the theory of Madeleine’s kidnapping only fits for those who react to these things in an emotional way.
The british press has started a new campaign about Madeleine’s case. Now, the front line is the attack against the portuguese press. And don’t say it’s the tabloids. All, including BBC, Sky News, are distorting and manipulating news with one objective: to save their faces. They bet the whole World that Madeleine was abducted. Now, there is no way back. Their issue is very simple: all news that point to an abduction are good. As long as the abductor is not english. All news that point to other solutions are bad. They’re speculation. They seek to attack the pitiful family.
The truth, which no image assessor , no journalist can hide, is that this family has received the best that Portugal can offer in times of distress. We cried with them, we prayed, we wanted to believe the whole image operation was about their distress in the search for their daughter. Even Justice was tolerant. If portuguese parents had abandoned three children to their fate in order to have a good time with their friends, and one of the children disappeared, the press, the police, the social services would be all over them. With the McCanns, we closed our eyes to their negligence. They’re english and so on, they like to get drunk in the Algarve and so on, and of course! they’re culturally different from us. They, the owners of progress, who give their children complete freedom, we, the peasants, who don’t take our eyes off our children. But there is another truth. From the first hour on, the theory of a kidnapping only fits those who react to these things in an emotional way. The portuguese and english police who are investigating this case could not commit that mistake. Mysteries, to be solved, need the exercise of reason and not of tears. And reason, sometimes, pushes us into places of horror. The McCanns?interviews say what the affectuous masses want to hear. They are carefully prepared by assessors, they integrate the british campaign against other possibilities to solve the mystery, they induce their listeners to believe there is no truth except the abduction. A truth they cannot explain themselves.
There is still another truth. Only those who ignore what a criminal investigation is about, can talk about new investigation lines. Because they’re all the same age. It’s just that some possibilities show they were not sustainable, and others had legs to walk. The arrival of dogs that are specialized in blood and cadaver odours is no speculation. It’s an evidence. They underline the suspicion that the child may have been killed inside that house. Was it the kidnapper? What for? Did he want to abduct a corpse? So who was it? The answer scares british press, and hence the xenophobe attacks against the portuguese journalists and police. It had to be someone who visited the house and knew it. Someone who knew it well enough to know where the cleaning products were kept, in order to clean blood stains. And, if this police research is confirmed, one cannot even talk about accidental death. Anyone who, alone or accompanied, hides clues, is trying to conceal a crime. There is no simpler deduction exercise available. The instrument of detetctives. Other paths are in faith’s territory. The priests celebrate masses, detectives discover crimes.
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:35 pm    Post subject:    
A truly insightfull article in the USA press. Worth the reading. I can't recall who pointed me to it, but... Kudos!

McCanns Need To Come Clean - Now
By:Chris Freind, The Bulletin
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I have championed Don Imus keeping his job. I have defended Barry Bonds' achievements. I stood up for the falsely accused Duke lacrosse players long before they were cleared. I complimented a governor, whom I disagree with on virtually every policy, because he had the guts to take responsibility for a mistake. And I even stated that Paris Hilton was wrongly jailed, receiving unfair treatment because she is a celebrity.
But no matter how much I try, I simply cannot find anything worth defending about Gerry and Kate McCann. Or the complicit paper tiger known as the British media.
It has been nearly 100 days since little Madeleine McCann disappeared, yet intriguing developments and inconsistencies continue to emerge, literally day by day. There was a "100 percent sure" sighting of Madeleine in Belgium, subsequently debunked by DNA testing. A well-respected Portuguese newspaper, the daily Diario de Noticias, has alleged that intercepted e-mails and phone conversations between the McCanns and their friends show that they had knowledge of Madeleine's death.
The perception that the McCanns have not been forthright is building huge momentum. And, as we all know, rightly or wrongly, perception becomes reality.
Millions worldwide have kept Madeleine's story on the front page for a longer duration than ever thought possible. People have offered their prayers, thoughts, assistance, and yes, their wallets to the McCanns in the hope that Madeleine will be safely recovered.
Yet the McCanns' eccentric and illogical behavior, along with conflicting facts of what happened that fateful night, have begun to turn the tide of public opinion. Whereas very few publicly called for child endangerment charges to be brought against the McCanns back in May (yours truly was one of those voices in the wilderness), public opinion now strongly supports such action. Whereas very few originally espoused the notion that the abduction was in some way "faked," doubts about the official version of the May 3 events are now rampant. Whereas the initial investigation did not genuinely focus on the McCanns or their friends as possible suspects, a respected Portuguese newspaper just reported that detectives have "definitely abandoned" the theory that poor Madeleine was abducted, now believing that she was killed inside the McCanns' ground floor, unlocked apartment. Two specialized British dogs, one trained to detect blood and the other to identify the scent of a dead body, apparently reacted positively to both inside the room.
I am certainly in no position to state what actually happened to Madeleine, and there is not enough evidence - yet - to accuse the McCanns of physical wrongdoing, either deliberate or accidental (well, other than their horrendous lack of judgment and non-existent parenting skills). As previously stated, they should definitely be charged with child endangerment, if for no other reason than to ensure that this tragedy does not befall any other "Madeleines."
Click to learn more...
The British Media's Complicity
Thousands of Brits (and Aussies) have e-mailed with a fury on this issue. What is striking is the commonality on two main points. First, the vast majority of British people think that leaving young children alone while their parents go out to dinner is abhorrent behavior, especially for doctors who should certainly know better (Gerry is a cardiologist and Kate a general practitioner). Second, the British media has absolutely whitewashed the facts in this case, squashing any dissent of Team McCann and choosing fluff over substance. The blatant bias and orchestrated disinformation are outrageous: Letters to the editor are being filtered to only reflect "victim status" toward Gerry and Kate, blog posts and forums containing criticisms have been shut down, common sense questions continue to go unasked and objective journalism/investigative reporting are almost non-existent. All of this from a media establishment, both mainstream and the red top tabloids, that prides itself on its "print and be damned" attitude. Why the rose-colored glasses, and what about the true victim, Madeleine?
What sway the McCanns have over the media, I do not know. But the pendulum has begun to swing back, and the McCann media machine's vice grip on the media is now tenuous.
As famed Australian blogger Mike Hitchen wrote, "The British media establishment is very much a closed shop and operates on the simple concept that you can fool all of the people all of the time. In days gone by that was very much the case. But in their smugness they have failed to take into account an increasingly questioning public with access to information outside the traditional media."
Well said, mate!
Questions For The McCanns
If Gerry and Kate are sincere about cooperating fully with the police, there should be no issue answering some of the most basic questions:
1) Will you and your friends take lie detectors tests? While not guaranteed, they are a decent barometer for an investigation's direction. If there is nothing to hide, releasing the results would be a public relations boon, and the investigation could center around Madeleine for a change.
2) What time was it when you discovered Madeleine was missing? Was it 9 p.m., as Kate states, or 10 p.m.? And why the discrepancy? How long did it take for you to call the police? There are reports of a significant delay on your part. You stated that the shutters were forced open, but the police and hotel staff said there was no evidence of tampering. And Kate, why, upon discovering that Madeleine was missing, did you return to the restaurant, leaving the two-year old twins alone (again) while a predator could still have been lurking nearby? Since the restaurant was only "twenty yards" away, your screaming clearly would have been heard. Interestingly, Kate, you yelled, "They've taken her," but how did you know Madeleine was abducted? After all, the doors were unlocked. Madeleine was known to sleepwalk. Or perhaps this little girl just happened to awaken in a dark, unfamiliar place, becomes scared and, alone and understandably frightened, looked for the comfort of her parents. When she didn't see either of you in the apartment, could she have walked outside to find you? And, by the way, Kate, why did you say "they" took her?
3) Your resort was extremely child-friendly. Why not use the inexpensive babysitting services that were available? Some reports state that you did not want the children to be around unfamiliar people. Yet the same people who ran the day camp your children attended were also the babysitters. Also, how could "strangers" be any worse than leaving three young children (with a combined age of seven) alone in an unlocked apartment?
4) Exactly how far away was the restaurant? There are huge inconsistencies with your answers to this question. Was it 50 yards, 150 or just 20, as Kate stated in an interview last week? Could you in fact see the room from your table? How often did one of you walk back to check on the children before Madeleine went missing: Every hour, half-hour, or not at all? (The statements of the resort staff differ markedly from yours.) If, as you say, this arrangement was so secure, and you could see your apartment from your table, wouldn't you have been able to see any alleged abductor? Isn't it true that your view of the room was partially blocked by a wall and a hedge, and that the other door to the room and the windows were not visible at all? Is this the "secure arrangement" you actually compared to eating in your backyard garden?
5) During a BBC interview, Kate, you were adamant that the children would not awaken during the time you and your husband were dining. Yet since Madeleine had a history of sleepwalking, how could you be so sure of this? Were the children given any sleeping drugs or medications?
6) How often did you dine out (at child-friendly restaurants) while leaving the children alone? What were the distances of these restaurants from your room?
7) Did you ever hire private investigators after Madeleine's disappearance? If not, why?
 What is the nature of the Limited Company you established after Maddy vanished? How much money has been raised and spent? For what were the spent monies used? Has any reward from the company been posted? Are any family members on the payroll? What are the limitations, if any, on how the money can be spent?
9) Why did you travel to the United States when not one lead ever suggested that Madeleine was taken there? How much money did you raise in America?
10) You stated in an earlier interview: "Looking at it from where we are now, I don't feel we were irresponsible, I feel we are very responsible parents." Do you still feel that way?
These questions are, at a minimum, a logical starting point to get to the bottom of Madeleine's disappearance.
However, there is one point that I simply cannot rectify:
Assume for a minute that if the police dog was accurate in its detection of death in the room, and the death was that of Madeleine - and we all pray that it is not - then why would the perpetrator take a dead child from the room?
A wise man once said that lies reveal more than they conceal.
In their quest for the truth, the British people have shown a temerity and passion that is increasingly rare. They should be justifiably proud of their tenacity in the face of tremendous adversity.
But Gerry and Kate, your 15 minutes are up.
Chris Freind can be reached at

©The Evening Bulletin 2007
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:02 pm    Post subject:    
Thank you, for the non drivel Curiouser.
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:04 pm    Post subject:    
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:09 pm    Post subject:    
is this one of the threads we want to keep bumping - like vancouver1's post? if so - bump!
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:13 pm    Post subject:    
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:26 pm    Post subject:    
Excellent post 
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:30 pm    Post subject:    
excelente ideia 
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 Message 3 of 3 in Discussion 
From: MSN Nicknametin-lizzySent: 2/23/2008 12:37 PM

Joined: 08 Jun 2007
Posts: 2303
 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:32 pm    Post subject:    
Last edited by HAL on Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:33 pm    Post subject:    
This is link to the earlier SOL. Many thanks to Astro who translated some, and to the unknown who compiled.
this on Sol website now:
July 11th
Murat and 3 McCann friends confronted
Policia Judiciaria is going to confront the three elements of the group that was spending holidays with Madeleine’s parents in Praia da Luz, with the statement of the person who is until now the only arguido in the process of the disappearance of the english child
The four persons who are being inquired are going to be submitted to a confrontation, in order to clarify the truth about what happened on the night of the kidnapping, given the fact that the statements are contradictory.
Among the english that were spending their vacation with Madeleine’s parents at the Ocean Club and are going to be heard today, are the couple Russell O’Brien and Jane Tanner.
We are reminded that a SOL investigation concluded that Russell was the group’s element who was absent for the greatest amount of time, during the dinner that was held on the night Madeleine McCann disappeared.
The testimony of a resort employee confirms that a few days earlier, it was also Russell O’Brien who had been absent during the group’s dinner.
Jane Tanner is one of the key witnesses of the process, given the fact that she claims to have seen a man carrying a child, during one of her trips to the apartments to check on the children.
The english woman states she saw a man aged 35-40, with dark hair, wearing beige trousers, a dark jacket and classic black shoes, carrying a girl, who was wearing a pyjama and was barefoot.
Yet, this portrait does not fully coincide with Murat, given the fact that he never wore his hair long at the neck, which is how Jane describes the man she saw.
Although Jane describes the individual with good detail, Jeremy Wilkins ?another witness who was on the street at the exact moment when Jane says she saw the suspect ?guaranteed to SOL that he saw neither Jane nor any suspect, adding that if this had happened, it would have been ‘practically impossible?not noticing the ocurrence.
Another aspect that the police will want to clarify is whether Robert Murat was at the Ocean Club on the night Maddie vanished.
The McCann’s friends confirm they saw the arguido at the resort in Praia da Luz, but staff and GNR elements deny this version.
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:35 pm    Post subject:    
This is link to the earlier SOL. Many thanks to Astro who translated some, and to the unknown who compiled.
author: Margarida Davim
translated by: Astro
July - date to be confirmed
At the entrance of Ocean’s Club in Praia da Luz, the journalists who participated in the press conference that was held by Madeleine’s parents for the portuguese media, encountered a plastic box to collect donations. A small text, signed by Kate and Gerry McCann, invites everyone who enters the resort to contribute. This gesture was not appreciated by the members of staff, who claim that the resort “is full of collection boxes?
A fund for Maddie
This box is just one of many ways that Maddie’s parents found to collect money for the ‘Leaving no Stone Unturned?fund ?which counts with almost 900 thousand pounds already (one million three hundred thousand euros).
Justine McGuinness, the McCann’s new public relations, guarantees that the collected money “is being managed by a group of independent persons? and subject to “very rigorous rules that are imposed by british law to all charities? Still, McGuinness refuses to explain who are the “highly qualified lawyers and managers?that are managing the fund, just highlighting they are not remunerated, and offered as volunteers.
On the site there is an online store, where Gerry and Kate sell yellow rubber bracelets and textile bands, to help finance the cause. Callum McRae, the author of the site, says it was the couple’s idea. Speaking to SOL, McRae explains that the child’s aunt, Philomena McCann, asked him to create the internet page, just two days after the girl went missing. “She knew exactly what she wanted? says Callum McRae, who created the contents in just one day.
The McCann’s internet page also publicizes several fundraising events, all taking place in the UK, and some planned over 60 days ahead.
To SOL, McRae, who was a student of Madeleine’s aunt in highschool, did not want to specify whether his work on the site is paid by the fund or not: “I’m not authorized to speak about that? According to the site, the fund’s purpose is to “support Madeleine’s family financially?and to make sure she is found, and her kidnappers brought to trial. After reaching these targets, the collected money shall be used to help solving “similar cases in the UK, in Portugal and elsewhere?
Twins at the creche
This week, Kate and Gerry moved into a villa outside the Ocean Club, but are still visiting the resort. “They come here every day to drop the twins at the creche? a member of staff reports.
Kate and Gerry, who are now staying at a villa with a pool, never had to pay for their stay at the resort. “They were not even handed a bill? the same employee of the Ocean Club says, noting the couple’s detached and somewhat “arrogant?attitude.
Reactions to SOL
Last edition’s article on the McCann case (A pact of silence), has livened the discussion in the UK. Fully translated into english, it has prompted approximately 20 pages of reactions in the forum of the Daily Mirror. Among the comments, there is criticism of the alleged censorship that this work was subject to in the forums of other british media.
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 Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:36 pm    Post subject:    
This is link to the earlier SOL. Many thanks to Astro who translated some, and to the unknown who compiled.
Article translated and posted by Astro:
I decided it deserves its own thread - hope you don't mind Astro!!!

in: SOL on July 13, 2007
an article by Graça Rosendo and Felicia Cabrita, with Margarida Davim
translated by: astro

No clues against Murat
PJ suspected a connection between Robert Murat and one of the McCann’s friends. Apart from that, there are few clues: at the arguido’s home, all they found was a ******** and an article about Casanova
Policia Judiciaria (PJ) returned this week to the investigation line that had been established on the days right after the disappearance of Madeleine McCann from Praia da Luz, and that was focused only on two targets: the group of nine english people that were on holidays in the Ocean Club, which included the little girl’s parents, and Robert Murat, the only arguido in this inquiry. The various leads that were followed in other countries seem to be fully dismissed.
On Tuesday, PJ in Portimao interrogated Murat tightly for six hours. On the following day, they confronted him with three friends of the McCann couple. According to what SOL could establish, none of them was confronted with the existence of new information. PJ centered their inquiries on the contradictions that were spotted in the various interrogations they were subject to during this investigation ?namely the fact that, among several dozens of witnesses, only the couple’s friends and one female employee of the Ocean Club saw Murat in the vicinity of the McCann’s apartment on the night that Maddie disappeared.
Not even GNR agents, the first authority that arrived on location, remember his presence that night, and guaranteed they only saw him on the next morning.
Judiciaria keeps Robert Murat as a main suspect anyway, and has been exploring the possibility of connections between him and Russell O’Brien, one of the members of the group of nine. But the only connection seems to be the fact that Murat went to Exeter, in England, where a sister of his lives, and where also Russell and Jane live, ten days before the child vanished.
This friend of the McCann’s, who returned to Portimao to be confronted with Murat, is one of the three elements of the group of nine who says he saw Murat at the place where the case happened.
******** and Casanova
Robert Murat, the son of a british mother and a portuguese father, was in the place where everything happened, on the morning after the disappearance, and immediately became a translator for the press, the GNR and the PJ.
It is immediately perceived how easily he moves around, entering the McCann’s apartment and the tourist club several times. He therefore watches the authorities?diligences and listens to some of the depositions that are taken on those first days. But his friends say he likes being noticed. He boasts about having done translations for the british police in Norfolk, and that he knows about the actions of paedophiles in the Algarve.
But in just two days, Murat becomes a suspect. British press remembers a case that happened in London, when the author of a crime was always present during the investigations, and started raising doubts. The police was alerted, and without him even noticing, started inquiring about his personal life, preferring to keep him close, rather than excluding him from the investigation.
But Murat also noticed what was being said about him. And he stated informally, as a sort of alibi, that on the night of the events he had been with his girlfriend ?as some friends have told SOL.
A week later, Murat was constituted an arguido. On the first time his deposition was taken, he presented a different version of what he had done on that night: he had not been with his girlfriend, but at home with his mother, having dinner.
This is just one of the contradictions with which Murat was confronted at PJ on Tuesday. Apart from that, the police have little to point against him, except for the fact that he owns a car ?which would give him more mobility than anyone in the group of nine had, to drive away from the crime scene with the child, according to a police source.
The searches that were done in his house produced a ******** and an article from ‘Telegraph Review?with the title ‘Lock up your daughters? It’s an article about a literary work on Casanova, which poses the possibility that the famous charmer was a paedophile. It was also discovered that Murat and his girlfriend used to visit adult porn sites.
‘A big confusion?
Jennifer Murat, the mother, states she had dinner with Robert at home that evening. The telephone records between 8 p.m. and midnight prove just that, according to sources close to Murat: “There are phone calls both from phones and cell phones that prove that, at the time he was seen, he was actually at home?
Barend Weijdon, a dutchman who established himself in Praia da Luz as a real-estate manager 10 years ago, took notice of the child’s disappearance around 10 p.m., through a friend. He was a few metres from the location, entered the Ocean Club and participated in the searches. He was there before the authorities arrived, he guarantees to SOL. “I know Robert very well, and if he had been there that night, I, just like many other friends of ours ho were there, would have certainly noticed him? And he adds: “I arrived there just after 10 p.m. and stayed until 3 a.m. I didn’t see him. But I remember sseing Maddie’s father and a friend, talking to GNR?
Also June Wright and her husband, who own a bar in Praia da Luz, upon hearing the news, joined the crowd and participated in the searches that night. They have known Murat for many years, and they are sure that they would have noticed his presence, if he had been there.
“It was full of people that we didn’t know? June told SOL. “It was a big confusion? she adds. A confusion that, according to an employee of the hotel, could have permitted about anything.
The versions of the friends
The three friends of the McCanns who have returned to Portimao state the contrary. Fiona Payne and Rachel Mumpilly assure they saw Robert Murat at the Ocean Club around 11.45 p.m., while Russell O’Brien says he saw him around 1 a.m. These guarantees were given after Murat was constituted an arguido. Because before, when they were confronted with the possibility that they might have seen anything suspicious on the night of the disappearance, they said nothing.
“He even told me he had a daughter of the same age as Madeleine? Russell said, as he spoke to SOL about this case 2 weeks ago. And Fiona Payne said at that time she told police that “he seemed to be peeking into the apartment?on that night.
This was the highest point of the confrontation that PJ held this week, and which put the McCann’s friends in front of Robert Murat. But the contradictions that led the PJ to suspect the group of nine british people right from the start, are still to be clarified.
We remember it was 10 p.m. when Kate decided to check on her children in the apartment. And this is the only moment that gathers consensus in the various versions the group delivered during the investigations. Madeleine had disappeared from her room, and the twins remained sound asleep.
In seconds, the resort was in turmoil. The four men in the group, and the club’s staff checked out every corner. GNR arrives over an hour later, and PJ arrives over 2 hours later. The first interrogations start: Where were the parents when the child disappeared? Gerry replies the nine were eating at the Tapas restaurant and took turns in checking the children were ok, at regular intervals.
He starts by saying he first checked the children at 9.05. When he entered the apartment, he just thought it was starnge that the bedroom door was partly open. But he checked the window, which was closed, just like the shutters, and relaxed.
His friend Jane Tanner, Russell’s wife, says that ten minutes after he returned to the table, it was her turn to check the rooms. She crossed ways with a dark haired man who was walking in the opposite direction carrying a child, but she didn’t find it strange. But she memorized the individual from head to toes, so she could later describe him in great detail.
A few minutes later, it’s time for Matthew, the husband of Rachel, to leave Tapas. He entered the room and saw the McCann children asleep. He noticed nothing out of the ordinary.
When, at 10 p.m., the mother notices her daughter is missing, the window is wide open and the shutters are up. To GNR, this is an unlikely scenario. One of the military guaranteed to SOL two weeks ago: “This is a silent area, where there are practically no cars passing by. Those shutters were difficult to lift from the outside, and they would have made a lot of noise. It would have been so much easier to enter the door, but there were no signs of a break-in?
The story of the group’s last dinner also includes some deviations. Some guarantee that someone left the table every half hour to check on the children. Others reduce this time to half of it. Some say the checking was done through the windows. Others state that the adults entered each other’s apartments.
One of the employees that was serving that evening does not remember that much movement: “I just remember a tall, grey-haired man to get up from the table? This was Russell, who had not attended dinner two days earlier, either. An aerobics teacher from the resort entertains dinner guests at the Tapas with a Quiz. At 9.30 p.m., when the game is over, Gerry invites her to their table, where she stays for half an hour. During that time, she told friends, nobody left the table, but there was a vacant seat.
Jeremy contradicts
Gerry alters his version several times, but he maintains that the door to the children’s room was open. Matthew later denies his own statement of that night: He says that the bedroom door was open and there was more light, as if the shutters had been raised. The theory that there was already someone inside the apartment starts to take shape. And it reinforced Jane’s story.
But there is a witness at the right time, on the wrong location. Jeremy Wilkins, who had become accquainted with Maddie’s father during the vacations and played tennis with him, was walking his eight months old son around. He met
Gerry, who had left the apartment through the back door, and exchanged a brief conversation with him. At that time, according to the first statements, Jane was leaving Tapas, heading for the apartments?main entrance, and meets them both. Jeremy contradicts: “It was a rather narrow street and I don’t think anyone could pass there without me noticing?
When the british woman reaches the top of the street, she sees an individual carrying a child. In spite of the dim lighting, and the situation not raising any suspicions for her, she describes the beige trousers, the dark thick jacket and the black classic style shoes in great detail. Jeremy insists: “If that had happened, I would probably have seen it?
Jane did not come to Portugal to participate in this new round of depositions. And the reconstitution of the events on that night has yet to be made. Therefore, we do not know yet whether the man that the british woman claims to have seen carrying a child on that night, is Robert Murat or not.
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