Thursday, May 05, 2016

The main objective of the English authorities was to exonerate the parents of Madeleine McCann




Short debate on the news that Scotland Yard is allegedly following a lead that presumes that Madeleine McCann was abducted by three Portuguese men. Rua Segura is a daily TV show broadcast by CMTV where criminal current issues are debated and analysed. On this episode the program had as guests Carlos Anjos, former PJ inspector and former head of the Criminal Investigation Officers' Union and André Ventura, University Law Professor & book author.

Carlos Anjos: 'I believe that there is clearly an attempt to exonerate the couple'


Transcript

Anchor Sara Carrilho - The thesis of abduction of Madeleine McCann by three Portuguese men is back on the table for the British authorities. The Judiciary Police however does not believe in that hypothesis which was already investigated two years ago.

Voice Over Joana Sales (news segment) - It's the last line of investigation concerning Maddie's disappearance. If it doesn't produce any results Scotland Yard will close the case nine (sic, 5) years after it started. The thesis of this new investigation is unknown, but English police sources believe that the possibility that the little 3-year-old girl was abducted during a burglary deserves a fresh look. This hypothesis surfaced in 2014. The Portuguese police constituted at the time three men as arguidos (suspects), José Carlos da Silva, 30 years old (sic, 39), Ricardo Rodrigues, 24 years old, and Paulo Ribeiro, 53 years old. One of the suspects worked at the Ocean Club resort where the McCann family were staying. He was in charge of accompanying the clients up to the apartments in Praia da Luz. The British police believes that this man together with the other two suspects assaulted the McCanns' apartment and upon seeing the little girl decided to take her. The English police suspicions have as basis phone calls records between the three men on that night. The Portuguese police provided at the time the information requested but considers that there are no indicia to incriminate the three suspects. Scotland Yard will carry on with the investigation, as was recently advanced, until they close it in a few months time whether they have conclusions about Madeleine McCann's disappearance or not.

Anchor Sara Carrilho - Carlos, do you think it makes any sense for the English authorities to question these three Portuguese men again, or return to this abduction thesis?

Carlos Anjos - No, nothing makes sense anymore. I would say, from the day the process was reopened or since when the English authorities reopened the case in England and started to investigate, it has never made any sense. It would make some sense if the English authorities had read the Portuguese process and said that there were failures, and then followed alternative lines of investigation. All they did do, what they have limited themselves to, was merely to follow or repeat what was done by the Portuguese, several times. In fact, they are now redoing what they themselves had done, they've already done this step.

Anchor - That they themselves did, they've already investigated this lead.

Carlos Anjos - It has been a series of blunders, even from the point of view.. A few years later they were searching the sewers to see if the girl was still there, if the body had been there the sewers would have blocked and would have likely burst, with all that rained down in Portugal in the past winters there would be no hypothesis. What they have done, from an investigative standpoint, not only was badly done, we cannot also see a line (methodology). Now they want to pursue a thesis of abduction, which is something... They want to talk with three people, it should be said that of these three I can almost guess who they are going to try pin the blame on for the abduction - on the one that died. Of the three men there's one that has already died, and that is always the weakest link since he's not here to defend himself. These Portuguese have been very helpful, even the suspects, because they've always talked to the English. That is, whenever the English want to speak with them, they have accepted to answer their questions and to give them statements. Because they could clam up, they could refuse with the status of arguidos to give any statements. Actually, they are not arguidos1 because the English don't have the capacity for that. There is a curious fact, the only suspect that was an arguido, Robert Murat, who right or wrong was considered initially as the main suspect, the English discarded him immediately, maybe because he is also English, but that one didn't matter for this scenario. We couldn't see a line of reasoning in there.

I believe this process is going to end very soon, after they make this new onslaught in Portugal. They've spent a lot of money, it's one of the most expensive cases in English investigation history. Strangely enough, numerous children disappear in England yet they don't give them any special care, but they have that with Madeleine McCann.

I would applaud them if I saw an investigation done in different way, and if I saw them taking steps that we hadn't taken, if we had failed it would be necessary to do them, and I do think that we failed, this was already said in here, Rui Pereira said that and Manuel (Rodrigues)2 also, that one of the serious errors was not constituting the McCann couple and their friends as arguidos for the abandonment of their children. There were mistakes in the investigation but those errors were repaired. Now, the English have never brought anything new to the investigation, absolutely nothing at all. And we are here today - if people notice, Portugal followed several lines - we don't know of the English investigation a single lead that was different, a single line of investigation that was different, or that it had produced a different type of results.

This is gearing up for one thing, the English, Scotland Yard will end up arranging a report that says that they have eliminated for good the possibility of the child dying in that house, in that night - and I'm not saying that it was homicide, negligent or not - and that what happened was an abduction. They're not going to say much more than that because they don't have any factual basis to affirm that it was an abduction. But they are going to say it. And why? Because this investigation since it started, from the English side, and from the point the dogs came to Portugal, the dogs that detected cadaver scent which lead to a different line of investigation, those English (officers) were replaced because it was of no interest (unhelpful), the thesis wasn't the one the UK wanted and what they want is a thesis that says: 'No, what happened was an abduction and the McCann couple is once and for all exonerated".

Curiously, we heard the process was going to be archived, and I am convinced, it's my personal opinion, that this process wasn't archived now because the Portuguese court decided in favour of Gonçalo Amaral. Since the decision was favourable for Gonçalo Amaral, and the McCanns are very embittered with that decision because they felt that it was unfair - I'm not saying that it was or not, this is just an observation - the English police, at a time when everything pointed to the archival of the case for lack of evidence - there was even a news article on Correio da Manhã and in other newspapers - decided to start new investigations upon the decision of the Portuguese courts. I believe that there is clearly an attempt to exonerate the couple, the English want to remove any suspicion from the McCann couple. In my opinion, it was never their main goal to find Madeleine McCann. The main objective of the English authorities was to exonerate the parents of Madeleine McCann. More Joana Morais



Monday, April 25, 2016

Comments and Link Dump


Update: Full English transcript available here. Lengthy (thank you Joana Morais) but most readable.

Any inference I make below is purely academic, for a body in a coffin theory plays havoc with later revelations, DNA and cadaver odour in the McCann's hire car etc.


Short transcript from CM Special: "Maddie, the Mystery"


Anchor João Ferreira - I would like for you to tell us in detail your explanation for the disappearance of the body, you have a thesis..

Gonçalo Amaral - No, I don't have one.

Anchor - ... in this book...

Gonçalo Amaral - No, in that book there isn't anything concerning what we just saw me saying on the news piece that was shown. Because these are elements, these are information that appeared afterwards and were never investigated. It's just an hypothesis, and when considering that hypothesis...

Anchor - An hypothesis that Madeleine's body could have been hidden, could have been incinerated, right?

Gonçalo Amaral - There's an information here, in the police, that mentions that. That in a night, three figures were seen carrying a bag, entering the church...

Anchor - In the Praia da Luz church.

Gonçalo Amaral - In that church was a coffin of a woman, a woman from the United Kingdom...

Anchor - Of a British woman.

Gonçalo Amaral - ... and in the following day that coffin was transferred to Ferreira do Alentejo to be incinerated. But no one is saying that the parents did that, or saying who did that. It's something that someone who is on the field investigating has to ascertain, must investigate thoroughly.

Anchor - But you concede that hypothesis, that possibility of Madeleine's cadaver being taken to the church, and then incinerated is a plausible hypothesis...

Gonçalo Amaral - We're practically starting by the end, first is the disappearance, if you allow me to explain, to explain to the viewers... [overlapping speech]

Anchor - I'll allow you, but just so not to lose this train of thought, is this hypothesis plausible for you?

Gonçalo Amaral - It is plausible, and I say plausible in this sense, that that body would fit underneath the cadaver that was already there.

Anchor - And it would fit?

Gonçalo Amaral - It would, yes. At the time, when I was already out of the Judiciary Police I obtained the opinion of people that dealt with that, of funeral agencies, and they said that it was a possibility. It's an opinion that is not officialized but it's a possibility. If it happened like that or not, we don't know, there are several hypotheses to make a body disappear. Joana Morais



Previous comments

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Ex British Diplomat Craig Murray Speaks On The McCanns


The nitty gritty.

The Strange Case of Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and the McCanns


. . . Which leads me on to the question of why they received such exceptional treatment from British authorities, directed straight from No. 10, to the extent that Blair and Brown eventually gave them a PR representative? I used at one stage to be Resident Clerk in the FCO, a now abolished post effectively of night duty officer. I can tell you from horrible personal experience that the FCO deals with gut-wrenching cases of lost or dead children abroad frequently. I spent one of the most terrible three hours of my life, through to a cold dawn, on the phone with a hysterical bereaved mother desperate to explore any avenue that might give a possibility that the boy who had just drowned in Brazil was misidentified as her son. On average, I am afraid such tragedies get substantially less than 1% of the public resources that were devoted to the McCanns.

I am going to come straight out with this. British diplomatic staff were under direct instruction to support the McCanns far beyond the usual and to put pressure on the Portuguese authorities over the case. I have direct information that more than one of those diplomatic staff found the McCanns less than convincing and their stories inconsistent. Embassy staff were perturbed to be ordered that British authorities were to be present at every contact between the McCanns and Portuguese police.

This again is absolutely not the norm. On a daily basis more British citizens have contact with foreign authorities than the total staff of the FCO. It would be simply impossible to give that level of support to everybody. Plus, against jingoistic presumption, a great many Brits who have contact with foreign police are actually criminals.

The British Ambassador in Portugal, John Buck, had been my direct boss in the FCO. he was Deputy Head of Southern European Department when I was Head of Cyprus Section. He and his staff were concerned by contradictions in the McCann’s story. The Embassy warned, in writing, that being perceived as too close to the McCanns might not prove wise. They demanded the instruction from London be reconfirmed. It was.

I know of people’s misgivings because I was told directly. But material was also leaked (Joana Morais) to a Belgian newspaper confirming what I have said. It was published by the Express, but like so much other material which is not supportive of the McCanns, it got taken down. Fortunately that last link preserved it. It also shows that the FCO continues to refuse Freedom of Information requests for the material on the interesting grounds that it might damage relations with Portugal. Full article

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Conclusions of the Appellate Court's Decision Goncalo Amaral


Update: Full translation here

Update: Decision explained Zizipresscuts
Translation of the Conclusions of the Appellate Court's Decision

This is a translation of numbers 3 and of the Appellate Court of Lisbon's decision in the case that has been filed by the McCann family against Gonçalo Amaral and others.

This blog would like to express its heartfelt gratitude to every one of you who have supported Gonçalo Amaral through this case. It is not over; but this is, without doubt, a significant and relevant decision that boosts our confidence in the Portuguese Courts and in a system that may be excruciatingly slow but ultimately serves its purpose of performing Justice.

Thank you.



3. Under articles 635, number 4, and 639, number 1, of the Civil Process Code, the matter of the appeal is delimited by the appellant’s conclusions.

The matter subject to decision is thus essentially centred on the evaluation of the alleged wrongfulness and the responsibility that derives from it, imputed to the 1st defendant [Gonçalo Amaral], now the appellant, of the publication, by the 2nd and the 3rd defendants, equally appellants, of the works at stake.

As far as personality rights are concerned, article 26, number 1, of the Constitution states that everyone has a right to a good name and reputation and to the protection of the intimacy of private and family life.

The same fundamental law protects, with equal dignity, freedom of expression, by stating under number 1 of article 37 that everyone has a right to express and to publicise their thoughts in words, image or by any other means, as well as the right to inform, to inform oneself and to be informed, without impediment or discrimination.

And also, under number 2 of article 38, freedom of press, by consecrating freedom of expression and of creation by journalists and their collaborators.

Number 2 of article 18 establishes, in the case of conflict between fundamental rights, that any legal restrictions to those rights must be limited to whatever is necessary in order to safeguard other rights or interests that are constitutionally protected.

On the other hand, in ordinary law, article 70 of the Civil Code consecrates, as a principle, that the law protects individuals against any illicit offence or threat to offend their physical or moral integrity, while article 80 of the same diploma states that everyone must respect someone else’s intimacy of private life.

Whenever there is a collision of rights that are equal or of the same kind, the holders must, under number 1 of article 335, cede as necessary in order for all of them to produce their effect equally, without greater damage for any one of them – while (under number 2 of the same article), if the rights are not equal or are of different species, the one that is considered superior must prevail.

Therefore, and as the dominant jurisprudence understands the matter:

“One of the limits to the freedom of information, which therefore is not an absolute right, is the safeguard of the right to a good name. Journalists, the media, are bound by ethical and deontological duties, and duties of rigour and objectivity.

- The media have the right, the social function, of spreading news and giving critical or non-critical opinions, and it is important that they do so with respect for the truth and for someone else’s intangible rights, as are personality rights.

- The right to honour, in a broader sense, and the right to freedom of press and of opinion are traditional areas of conflict.

- Criticism has a boundary in the rights of its targets, but it remains legitimate if it is sharp, steely, as long as it is not injurious, because so often therein lies the style of the author.

- To criticise implies to reproach, fault-finding that is aired in the media only stops being legitimate as a manifestation of individual freedom when it expresses objective antijuricity, violating rights that are extremely personal and which effect, in a more or less lasting manner according to men’s memory, assets that need to be preserved as are the rights here at stake, to honour, to a good name and to a social standing” (decision by the Superior Court, dated 20/1/2010, www.dgsi.pt)

In the case at hand, apart from the reporting of the facts that are part of the inquiry into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, an analysis of the book and of the rest of the published material finds that the now 1st appellant [Gonçalo Amaral] therein sustains the thesis that an abduction did not take place, but rather the accidental death of the child, followed by a cover-up – through the concealment of her cadaver and the simulation of that crime – by plaintiffs Gerald and Kate McCann, now the subjects of the appeal.

It results from the aforementioned publication that the means of evidence and the indicia that it reports to are, essentially, those referred to and documented in the respective criminal enquiry.

Nevertheless, the exposed thesis, that the child died accidentally and that fact was concealed by the parents, who have broadcast, in order to deceive, the hypothesis of an abduction, is not new – the same is equally contained in the report which is mentioned under number 9 of the proven facts, determining the arguido constitution of said subjects of appeal [Kate and Gerry McCann], and was, after a copy of the inquiry was made public, published in the media (numbers 65 and 66 of proven facts).

As was stated in the decision, from this Section, concerning the appended injunction, the 1st appellant [Gonçalo Amaral], wanted, through this book – because the institution to which he was bound did not allow him to reply to attacks against his pride and honour, as a professional of the criminal investigation police – to expose his vision of the facts, and therefore the publication of said book has to be considered a legitimate exercise of the right to an opinion.

And because from the proved matter results that – apart from it being about facts that have been profusely published in the inquiry and even publicised through an initiative of the Republic’s Prosecutor General’s Office – it was the subjects of the appeal themselves [Kate and Gerry McCann] who, benefiting from an easy access, multiplied themselves in interviews and interventions in national and international media, one must conclude that it was them who, voluntarily, limited their rights to reservation and to the intimacy of private life.

By proceeding in this manner, they opened the way for anyone to equally express an opinion about the case, contradicting their thesis – without losing their right to exercise a legitimate, and constitutionally consecrated, right to an opinion and a freedom of expression of thought.

On the other hand, we cannot see how the right of the subjects of this appeal [Kate and Gerry McCann] to benefit, following their constitution as arguidos, from the guarantees of the penal process – including the right to a fair investigation and the right to freedom and safety – may be offended by the contents of a book which, in its essence, describes and interprets facts that are part of an inquiry whose contents have been published.

Nothing opposes that, although they have not been deemed sufficient to lead to a criminal charge, said facts are subject to diverse appreciation, namely in a work of literary nature.

Therefore, and because it is contained within consecrated rights, namely under numbers 37 and 38 of the Constitution, the publication at stake must be considered lawful.

Nonetheless, it is understood, in the decision under appeal, that because the 1st appellant, Gonçalo Amaral, was, until October 2, 2007, the coordinator of the criminal investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, he was, after his retirement on the 1st of July, 2008, subject to the duties of secrecy and reserve that are imposed to the employees that serve the Polícia Judiciária.

And, under such terms, although the introductory note in the book invokes personal reasons, in a situation of conflict with the rights to a good name and reputation of the subjects of the appeal, the appellant [Gonçalo Amaral] could not benefit, faced with the results of the investigation, of a broad and full freedom of expression – and thus his conduct would be unlawful, under article 484 of the Civil Code.

From what was above said about this matter, it is clearly understood that such argumentation cannot be sustained.

In effect, and independently of the reasons invoked by the appellant for the publication, it is hardly understandable that an employee, even more a retired one, would have to keep said duties of secrecy and reserve, thus being limited in the exercise of his right to an opinion, concerning the interpretation of facts that were already made public by the judiciary authority, and widely debated (in fact, largely by initiative of the intervenients themselves) in the national and international media.

In the absence of its primordial presupposition it must therefore be concluded against the previous decision, due to the lack of precedence of any of the requests that have been formulated by the current subjects of the appeal [Kate and Gerry McCann] – while the re-appreciation of the matter of fact that had been secondarily requested remains impaired.

4. From the above mentioned, it is agreed, in accordance with both appeals, to revoke the appealed decision and, considering the action against them to be unfounded, to acquit the appealing plaintiffs of the totality of the requests. The costs, in both instances [courts] are to be paid by the appealed subjects [Kate and Gerry McCann]. http://pjga.blogspot.co.uk/2016/04/translation-of-conclusions-of-appellate.html
Update Amaral to sue

Monday, April 04, 2016

An Open Letter to Operation Grange

With not everyone having a Facebook account, I thought I would import this in its entirety.


 John Coxon 22 hrs

I wish to register a formal complaint in regard to Operation Grange , the so called Met Police search for Madeleine McCann.

I do so on the following grounds.

1/ It has blatantly and inexplicably failed to look at the parents and accompanying party as suspects in the investigation.

This is in complete disregard to the findings in the original Portuguese investigation.

Namely

A/ multiple and significant discrepancies in their accounts

B/ deletion of mobile phone data and obstruction of evidence

C/ multiple indications by forensic cadaver and blood dogs in their apartment on Kate McCann's clothing , the child's toy and on a vehicle they hired 3 weeks after her disappearance.Also a close DNA match found in the boot of the same vehicle.

D/ An eye witness account naming Gerry McCann as the so called prime suspect, Smith man.

E/ The McCanns refusal to cooperate , answer questions and take part in a reconstruction which shelved the original enquiry

F/ Allegations from two healthcare professionals that at least one of the party , doctor David Payne is a paedophile.

They were made suspects for all these perfectly valid reasons , it is apparent that Operation Grange has failed to address a single one of them. The Portuguese closing report does not exonerate them at all , I presume during the 5 years of its existence Grange was aware of these matters , yet has acted as if none of this ever happened.

More specifically , Met police chief Hogan Howe has on at least one occasion claimed the McCanns have been " ruled out" , firstly , this is at complete odds with Granges opening statement which claims " treat the abduction as if it happened yesterday" clearly implying they were totally off the table from the start , secondly it is simply impossible as there is no independent evidence that exonerates them and if there was the McCanns publicity machine would be screaming it from the roof tops.

2/ It is apparent lines of enquiry have been leaked to the media. If this were the case and a live child were being held captive , it would clearly endanger that individuals life, obviously a totally unacceptable situation. Furthermore these leaks have frequently coincided with an ongoing civil case the McCanns are fighting in Portugal , too frequently for comfort.

3/ This failure to investigate properly has boosted the McCanns public profile, helped promote KMs book sales and enabled them to take on further projects. Do you believe , for instance KM would have been made an ambassador for a charity had the Met asked her the same 48 questions she refused to answer in Portugal? I doubt it.

4/ Grange has wasted huge amounts of public money and police time chasing shadows in Portugal which its legal advisors must surely have told them were not viable lines of enquiry. In other words it has done a lot of work and spent a lot of money for the sake of doing it , no other credible reason.

The conclusions here are blatantly obvious.

Operation Grange is a whitewash - a vast PR exercise to promote an abduction scenario that not one shred of evidence exists to support ever even happened.

The implications are equally obvious .

A/ It obstructs the real police investigation going on
in Portugal

B/ It potentially supports a criminal fraud of huge proportions the McCanns ongoing business.

C/ It undermines the entire credibility of the whole Metropolitan Police Service ( as if it needed any further help)

D/ It threatens the credibility of the entire UK criminal justice system.
In summary Grange is simply corrupt , it has misappropriated huge amounts of public money , it potentially lets child murderers walk free, it is beyond a disgrace, it is worthy of extensive investigation in itself , that day can't come soon enough.
 John Coxon

Previous: Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood An Open Letter

Friday, March 18, 2016

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Blogger Etiquette: Don't Rob The Blogger Re-Up


By way of a reply, and a reminder, a re-up from 2010.




Blogger Etiquette. Don't Rob The Blogger Of His Pay (Expanded from the original)

For the vast majority of bloggers, that pay, the only pay, is knowing that they are being read.

If you take for example, any respectable blog, usually the American ones, for it is they that led the blogger revolution, you will find that the following code of practice is adopted by the majority.

Blogger Etiquette:

If a person/blogger spends a great deal of time and goes to extraordinary lengths researching, and then penning an article; it is neither mannerly nor morally correct for you to copy paste the COMPLETE article on your blog.

Post just enough to attract the interest of your reader and then link back to the authors blog.

The author deserves recognition for his work, and this is only achieved by traffic to the article/site.

It's only fair and it's only polite.



Which of course it is, and more importantly, the blogger who has produced the work gets recognised in his own right and his blog worthy of a visit. (or not)

If the complete article is posted, all the attribution in the world won't compensate for direct traffic. How many times do any of us click through to the original source having once read the complete article? Try putting yourself in the Blogger's shoes for a week; having spent X number of hours/days researching and constructing your article, you post it on your blog and then you sit back for a while with a cuppa and a ciggy, or your drug of choice, and wait. But more often or not you would working on your next little creation, but that's by the by. What isn't by the by however, is when that Blogger (you) takes a look at his site metre after a day or two and sees numbers that might be worthy of being described as abysmal.

How is he/her/you going to feel? pissed I shouldn't wonder, pissed and robbed. And then, in a worse case scenario, might think to themselves, why bother?

There is of course a practical side to doing this, if you are posting a dozen items or more a day, you don't end up with a blog a mile long, as you would do otherwise.

And I do practice what I preach by the way, it would only be under special circumstances or out of necessity that I do otherwise. And believe me please, it's not for my benefit that I write this, it's for the numerous authors who's work I see constantly plastered around the net like cheap wallpaper.

Stop please, I beg of you.



Thursday, March 10, 2016

A Nightwear Job by Dr Martin Roberts

I have my own twopenn'orth added at the bottom of the page. Ed.

Update: Tania Cadogan: Ponderings On Those Famous Pajamas And That Stain

Tania Cadogan blogspot


A Nightwear Job
By Dr Martin Roberts
March 9, 2016



As published in the Telegraph

Author unknown


In the very nearly nine years since the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, and the eight since the parents had their arguido status formally withdrawn, one simple question has passed publicly unanswered, probably because the answer appears obvious and the question therefore not worth the asking. I shall ask it nevertheless:


Who took the McCanns' 'official photograph' of Madeleine's pyjamas?


The image in question was 'released' to the world's media in the late afternoon of 10 May, 2007, following a press conference that day. It was no doubt assumed by many that, since the PJ released the photographs (there is more than one), the PJ themselves must have taken them. Yet a film distributor who arranges the release of a 'blockbuster' is hardly likely to have spent the previous months/years actually doing the filming.


With this seed of doubt in mind, one might consider what the PJ did with their photograph(s), adhering all the while to the worldwide practice, among law enforcement agencies, of 'continuity', whereby the progress of evidence through the system, in whichever direction, is recorded at each step along the way. Whereabouts, then, did they file this particular 'diligence' of theirs?


Within the relevant Forensic report (23 November 2007) are references to the following images, together with cognate views of a pair of pyjama trousers:



A far cry from earlier publicised representations you will admit.

Why on earth should the PJ have seemingly undertaken the same photographic work twice, involving two quite different sets of pyjamas?

The forensic record (of garments correctly pictured alongside a scaling reference, i.e. a ruler) is that of a pair of pyjamas supplied on request by M&S (UK), afterwards forwarded to the Forensic Laboratory in Lisbon by Goncalo Amaral, together with a covering letter dated 7 June. It has nothing whatever to do with the official photograph released in early May. In fact the clothing pictured has more in common with that featured in the retailer's own contemporary stock photograph, a copy of which was sent to the Algarve Resident, again on request, and which the 'Resident' published on 8 May - two days before the official release.



As published by the Algarve Resident


During a press call at the Amsterdam Hilton, on 7 June, Kate McCann took pains to explain that the pyjamas being exhibited at that time were in fact Amelie's, and that Madeleine's were not only bigger but did not feature a button-fastening t-shirt. Only a couple of days earlier the same pyjamas, again described as 'Amelies' and 'a little bit smaller', were presented on 'Crimewatch', but without reference to the button discrepancy.

It stands to reason of course, that, Madeleine McCann's pyjamas having been abducted, a surrogate pair would have been required for photographic purposes, in the event of there being no extant photographic record of the clothing in question. But appropriate photographs were to hand. They already existed. One version, as we have seen, was published by the Algarve Resident, another by the BBC. The McCanns' 'official' version was consistent with neither of these. With the PJ yet to physically access a representative set of pyjamas, why should they have been called upon to photograph anything else for immediate release?

There is no record of their having done so. Ergo they did not. So who did? And where did the pyjamas come from that enabled them to do it?

Addressing the second of these questions first, the garments featured in the PJ release cannot have come from M&S locally, since all their Portuguese branches had been closed years before. Had they come from M&S in the UK they would obviously have resembled the pair sent to (and genuinely photographed by) the PJ. A pointer to their origin is, however, to be found within the case files.

Alongside a suite of photographs taken at Lagos Marina by Kate McCann is an introductory memo, written by DC Markley of Leicester Police on or about the 8 May and headed up, 'Information from the Family'. Here also one finds the only copy (in black and white) of the McCanns' official photograph of Madeleine's pyjamas (Outros Apensos Vol. II - Apenso VIII, p.342). Rather than its being a PJ production, afterwards passed to the McCanns, it seems the photograph was actually a McCann production fed to the PJ, an observation wholly concordant with the fact that it was actually the McCanns who first revealed this photograph to the press, on Monday 7 May, three days before the PJ released it (as reported by Ian Herbert, the Independent, 11.5.07).

Any illusion that the image in question was the result of a McCann representative's commissioning their own studio photograph of 'off-the-shelf' UK merchandise may soon be dispelled. It is an amateur snapshot. Taken in ambient (day) light, against a coloured (as opposed to neutral) background, it is slightly out of focus and displays detectable signs of parallax. It is not something even a journeyman professional would admit to.

And yet, bold as brass, it represents 'information from the family'.

Perhaps it was produced by a member of the McCann entourage that descended on Praia da Luz over the long weekend 4-6 May? Then again, perhaps not. As Kate McCann explains in her book, 'madeleine' (p.109):

“Everyone had felt helpless at home and had rushed out to Portugal to take care of us and to do what they could to find Madeleine. When they arrived, to their dismay they felt just as helpless – perhaps more so, having made the trip in the hope of achieving something only to discover it was not within their power in Luz any more than it had been in the UK.”

On Kate McCann's own admission, to a House of Commons committee no less, neither she nor husband Gerry were any more capable of keeping cool under fire during this time. Having earlier (August 2007) told her Pal, Jon Corner, "the first few days.…you have total physical shutdown", she went on to advise the House that, despite being medically trained, she and her husband "couldn't function" (John Bingham, the Telegraph, 13.6.2011).

Well someone on the McCann side of the fence managed to function in time for the parents to appear before the media on 7 May with a photograph that, so far, no-one seems to have taken, and of clothing which, other things being equal, ought not even to have existed anywhere inside Portugal, except, perhaps, in the clutches of a fugitive abductor. But, of course, other things are anything but equal.

Non mihi, non tibi, sed nobis

A month after the world's media were first shown a picture of something resembling Madeleine McCann's 'Eeyore pyjamas', a real set was being touted around Europe. Described by Kate McCann as 'Amelie's' and being 'a little bit smaller', they were held aloft for the assembled press brigade, without any one of them questioning the pyjamas' origins either. Being 'Amelie's' was quite enough, apparently, to justify their also being in the McCanns' possession at the time. Since when though? Gerry McCann did not return home to Leicester from Praia da Luz until 21 May, time enough for him to have raided his daughter's wardrobe for something he might need on his European travels, but way too late to have met any 7/10 May deadlines.

It seems, then, as if the two ingredients required to achieve an earlier photograph of 'Madeleine's' pyjamas (the photographer and the subject) were both missing. So how was it done?

What at first appears to be a riddle is soon solved when one realises that the pair of pyjamas which accompanied the McCanns around Europe was the very same pair that starred in their 'official photograph' taken earlier. Kate McCann took public ownership of them before the television cameras the moment she referred to them as 'Amelie's'. On close inspection these pyjamas (Amelie's) are revealed as identical to the pair previously pictured in both the Daily Mail (10.5.07) and the Telegraph (see top of page here), down to the stray threads dangling from both upper and lower garments. This means that 'Amelie's pyjamas', for want of a better description, were also present with the McCanns since the start of their Algarve holiday.



As published by the Daily Mail


Suddenly the question ceases to be 'Who photographed a representative pair of Eeyore pyjamas?' and becomes, instead, 'Who photographed Amelie's pyjamas?' Furthermore, if everyone was feeling so shell-shocked as to render them incapable from the Friday, when did they have the presence of mind to take the requisite pictures?

We begin to edge toward a sinister conclusion once we take particular account of the literal background against which these particular pyjamas were photographed.


A coarse woven tale

Unlike the various studio renditions of Eeyore pyjamas to which we have been introduced, the McCann's official photograph(s), versions of which were published by both the PJ and the UK media, present the subject laid out against a blue textile, rather than the more customary piece of artist's board. This blue upholstery, for that is unquestionably what it is, helps define who, among the Tapas 9, might have been the photographer.

The Paynes, the Oldfields and the O'Briens can be ruled out. Only the Payne's apartment incorporated any soft furnishings in blue, but of a different quality to the plain open-weave material on display here. During the early morning of Friday 4 May, 2007, the McCanns were re-located to alternative accommodation in apartment 4G - another in which blue soft furnishings were conspicuous by their absence (it was appointed in beige throughout).* Added to which the concern, lest we forget, is with photography involving a pair of pyjamas known to have been in the McCanns' possession from the outset.

In his statement to Police of 10 May, Gerry McCann as good as exonerated himself of all blame concerning picture taking:

‘Asked, he clarifies that:
apart from the personal photos already delivered by him to the police authorities after the disappearance of his daughter MADELEINE, he has no others in his possession. 

He adds that it is:
his wife KATE who usually takes pictures, he does not recall taking any pictures during this holiday, at night.’

Notwithstanding accounts of how, from the Friday onwards, the McCanns, their nearest and dearest, all fell mentally and physically incapable (of anything save visiting the pool, the beach bar, and the church on Sunday morning), Kate McCann early on made a very telling remark, concerning photography, to journalist Olga Craig:

"I haven't been able to use the camera since I took that last photograph of her" (The Telegraph, May 27, 2007).

That statement alone carries with it a very serious connotation. However, we still have a distance to travel.

The more contrastive of the two images reproduced here displays what appear to be areas of shadow, when in fact there are no local perturbations at the surface of the fabric to cause them. Similarly, the dark bands traversing the t-shirt appear more representative of what is actually beneath it. These visible oddities suggest the material is in fact damp and 'clinging' to the underlying upholstery.

There is, as we know, an anecdote of Kate McCann's, which sees her washing Madeleine's pyjama top on the Thursday morning. As re-told in her book, she does so while alone in the family's apartment:

"I returned to our apartment before Gerry had finished his tennis lesson and washed and hung out Madeleine’s pyjama top on the veranda."

Size matters

As previously stated, Kate McCann was careful to bring the attention of her Amsterdam Hilton audience, to Madeleine's pyjama top being both larger and simpler than the version she was holding in her hands at the time. She was inviting them instinctively to associate garment size with complexity - the larger the simpler in this instance. It would mean of course that Madeleine's 'Eeyore' pyjamas, purchased in 2006, would not have been absolutely identical with those of her sister Amelie, purchased whenever (but obviously before the family's 2007 holiday on the Portuguese Algarve).

On 7 May, the Sun reported that:
"The McCann family also disclosed that on the night of her disappearance Madeleine was wearing white pyjama bottoms with a small floral design and a short-sleeved pink top with a picture of Eeyore with the word Eeyore written in capital letters.
"The clothes were bought at Marks and Spencer last year."
In his 7 June covering letter to the Forensic Laboratory in Lisbon, Goncalo Amaral conveys the following specification in relation to the pyjamas he was intent on sending for examination:

"The Pyjamas are from Marks and Spencers, size 2 to 3 years -97 cm.
"The pyjamas are composed of two pieces: camisole type without buttons"

Since these items could only have been supplied to the PJ in mid-07, they must have represented that year's style, as it were, for 2-3 year olds. Madeleine would have been four years old by this time. However, Kate McCann would have people believe that 'Amelie's' pyjamas, sporting a button, were designed to fit an even younger child. Had Kate purchased the appropriate pyjamas for Amelie in 2007 of course, they would not have had a button at all.

They must therefore have been purchased in the same epoch as Madeleine’s own, i.e. during 2006, when Amelie would have been a year younger and somewhat smaller even than when the family eventually travelled to Portugal the following year.

The significance of all this becomes apparent once we consider those photographs which show how the pyjamas held aloft by the McCanns at their various European venues encompassed half Gerry McCann's body length at least. Photographs of the McCanns out walking with their twins in Praia da Luz, on the other hand, illustrate, just as clearly, that Amelie McCann did not stand that tall from head to toe. Even In 2007 she would have been swamped by her own pyjamas, never mind the year before when they were purchased.

In conclusion, the McCanns' 'official photograph', first exhibited on 7 May, appears to be that of a damp pair of pyjamas, too big to have been sensibly purchased for Madeleine's younger sister that Spring, and most certainly not the year before. The subject is set against dark blue upholstery of a type not present in any of the apartments occupied by the McCanns or their Tapas associates immediately after 3 May. Kate McCann has explained, over time, how she was alone in apartment 5A that morning, in the company of a damp pyjama top (having just washed it) and how, from that afternoon by all accounts, she 'couldn't bear to use the camera', an automatic device (Canon PowerShot A620) belonging to a product lineage with an unfortunate reputation for random focussing errors.

Madeleine was not reported missing until close to 10.00 p.m. that night. If Madeleine McCann's pyjamas were not in fact abducted, then nor was Madeleine McCann.

Martin Roberts

*See the extended search videos here: http://www.mccannfiles.com/id167.html

Grateful thanks are due to Nigel Moore for collating a number of highly relevant photographs and media reports in connection with this topic.








1) Forensic photograph of couch in apartment 5A
2)Pyjamas belonging to the McCanns

 Not definite, but . . .

H/T Grande Finale


If a fellow thought that the Metropolitan Police Service was a functioning entity, he might call for the arrest of the McCanns based on what is written and depicted here. Ed.


Comments Full, Please Click Here

Oh Mister Redwood Whatever Have You Done?


 Methinks you should be explaining, in court number one.




Do read

1. Was the 'man carrying a child' really a red herring?

On the night Maddy went missing, one of the McCann's holiday companions said she saw a man carrying a child near the Ocean Club apartment block at around 9.15pm.

Jane Tanner said the child was barefoot and wearing light-coloured pink pyjamas with a floral pattern and cuffs on the legs, a description that matched the pyjamas Maddy had been wearing.

But Scotland Yard said last year they believe the man Ms Tanner saw was another British holidaymaker carrying his child.

Officers took photos of the man wearing similar clothes and standing in a similar posed.

DCI Redwood said his officers were "almost certain" that this sighting was not related to the abduction.

Now read again

1. Was the 'man carrying a child' really a red herring?

On the night Maddy went missing, one of the McCann's holiday companions said she saw a man carrying a child near the Ocean Club apartment block at around 9.15pm.

Jane Tanner said the child was barefoot and wearing light-coloured pink pyjamas with a floral pattern and cuffs on the legs, a description that matched the pyjamas Maddy had been wearing.

But Scotland Yard said last year they believe the man Ms Tanner saw was another British holidaymaker carrying his child.

Officers took photos of the man wearing similar clothes and standing in a similar posed.

DCI Redwood said his officers were "almost certain" that this sighting was not related to the abduction. Source

Just the one question then, who supplied the clothes?

I mean a set of clothes, it's not exactly gun-shot residue is it?

Previous:  Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood an Open Letter


Wednesday, March 02, 2016

UK Home Office Metropolitan Police Service



Nothing to see here.


Unenviable or untenable? Or both? 

Oh what a tangled web they weave when first they asked us to believe.

Monday, February 29, 2016

You Are the Company You Keep


People have frequently asked, if the McCanns were innocent, why would they need Michael Caplan QC, known for having represented Augusto Pinochet in extradition proceedings?

Equally one might ask, why would they need the ever transparent* David Rose? Or even the despicable BBC for that matter?

Why indeed?

Read on.

Panorama walk-out over McCann film

David Rose
Sunday 25 November 2007 10.25 GMT
Last modified on Friday 8 January 2016 07.43 GMT

Why did TV journalist David Mills, the producer of a Panorama film on the McCann affair, quit the project before it was transmitted last week? The Observer's David Rose reveals the inside story of the latest row to hit the BBC's flagship show

In the credits at the end of last week's Panorama special on the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, one name was conspicuous by its absence - that of David Mills, the programme's original producer. His name had disappeared from the end credits despite the fact that it was his company, Mills Productions, that had done all the research and was responsible for bringing the exclusive footage at the film's heart to the BBC.

Two weeks before transmission last Tuesday, Mills - one of Britain's most respected documentary-makers, who in his 40-year career has made 120 investigative films for broadcasters including the BBC, Granada, Thames and America's CBS - walked out of the programme after a furious row with Panorama's editor, Sandy Smith, over the programme's approach and argument.

He then wrote a stinging email to the BBC attacking Panorama for losing its journalistic passion. It has created a stir in the media world, mixing as it does the controversial issues of the McCanns and how their story is covered, journalistic balance and television current affairs.

'I had written a draft script and had already been told it was compelling,' Mills said. 'Sandy turned up with a completely different version and basically imposed it on me. I told him, "I cannot edit the film to this: it's a completely different show, and I'm not going to do it." To have this happening is very depressing.'

The incident - one of several controversies Panorama has faced this year - suggests, Mills said, that 'the BBC is no longer interested in serious current affairs'. BBC sources confirmed last night that the decisions about the programme's shape had been taken 'close to the top' of the BBC management hierarchy - which has already conducted a series of internal meetings over how the corporation should approach McCann case coverage in general.

As one of those interviewed by Mills and the programme's reporter, Richard Bilton, I can attest to how different the programme shown was to what they told me less than a month ago that they were envisaging. Along with The Observer's Ned Temko, who has covered the case for this newspaper, I ended up on the cutting-room floor. At that stage - as Mills's draft script makes plain - his intention was to make an analytical, investigative programme that would have been very critical of the Portuguese police, not only for the errors in their investigation, but for their apparent campaign of disinformation designed to put pressure on Madeleine's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann. It would also have criticised both the local and British press over allegations that they recycled unfounded rumours with little sign of fact-checking or detachment.

It would, as Mills confirmed again yesterday, have scrutinised the various allegations that have been floated against the McCanns and concluded they are baseless: 'We had an investigative team looking into the story for weeks. Our assessment was that the purported DNA evidence was weak and inconclusive, while so far as we could tell the supposedly significant "discrepancies" between the stories told by the McCanns' friends about the night of Madeleine's disappearance amount to very little indeed.'

The original film would have compared Madeleine to the JonBenet Ramsey case in Colorado, about which Mills has made three previous documentaries. After the body of JonBenet, a child beauty pageant winner aged six, was found in her parents' Boulder home, they were vilified by the police and media, despite their continued insistence that they had nothing to do with her death. They claimed she had been killed by an intruder. Mills's version of the McCann Panorama featured an interview - eventually not used - with JonBenet's father, John, in which he said that the Colorado police 'did a great job of convincing the media and the world that we were guilty, but they couldn't charge us, because of course they had no case'. Years later DNA evidence proved beyond doubt that JonBenet had been killed by an intruder. John Ramsey told Panorama: 'It's a life-time damage. No question about it.'

The programme on the McCanns that was broadcast by Panorama was much less ambitious. It recited the case both for and against the McCanns, but had nothing harsh to say about either the police or the media. It did include new material, including a video diary shot of the McCanns in Portugal by their friend John Corner - footage that had been acquired by Mills and had led to his company getting the BBC commission.

It also cast doubt on some of the wilder claims published by the tabloids, and contained the first interview with Jane Tanner, one of the McCanns' companions on the holiday in Praia de Luz last May, who said that she was certain she had seen a girl who looked like Madeleine being carried in the street by a strange man around the time she is thought to have disappeared. But the programme avoided firm conclusions.

Having handed the film's editing over to a colleague, Mills emailed Smith on Monday, the day before transmission, saying he felt compelled to remove both his name and his company's from the credits. 'In part this is because its muddled structure and lack of narrative drive means it is far below the standard of any work that I or my company would wish to be associated with,' the email said. 'In part, too, my decision reflects the programme's intellectual impoverishment. The McCann case poses issues of real importance which Panorama should have examined. That it is instead running a laboured, pedestrian, extended news report is shameful.

'But the most important reason for my decision is that because the programme is insufficiently analytical it verges on the dishonest. Our lengthy investigation revealed that there is no meaningful evidence against the McCanns... The real question must be how, without any meaningful evidence, the Portuguese police and the media in Portugal and Britain have been able to convince most people that the couple were involved.'

Mills had been working closely with a CBS team, which also used the video diary footage. They, he told Smith, had concluded it was 'ludicrous' and 'crazy' to think the McCanns could have caused the death or disappearance.

Smith emailed Mills back, accusing him of wanting to broadcast 'advocate journalism', and pointing out that the broadcast version did describe some of the allegations against the McCanns as 'tenuous, to put it mildly'. Smith said that, while it was true that the programme 'changed substantively,' this was because 'it is a current affairs programme and it was overtaken by events'. He added: 'To get Jane Tanner and some of the McCann family meant that some of the other stuff moved to the edge, and the original version was just not journalistically as important.'

Mills disagrees. 'So far as I can see, investigative journalism at the BBC is over,' he said. 'The broadcast script contains nuances that suggest that the McCanns still have a case to answer. The BBC should have had the courage to state that this is simply not so.'

Clarence Mitchell, the former BBC reporter who is the McCanns' spokesman, said Kate and Gerry were 'content' with the broadcast version and accepted that events meant it had to change. He said they had spoken to Bilton and told him they considered the film to be 'fair'.

Other McCann family members were less happy. John, Gerry's brother, whose interview was broadcast, said: 'It wasn't the programme that I was told they were going to make. They've made something very different, and I am disappointed, because I'd hoped the full story was going to be told. Nevertheless I'm pleased they interviewed Jane Tanner. She said she saw Madeleine being abducted, and we want people to remember that.'

The row follows controversies over previous films this year, such as a report on Scientology by former Observer journalist John Sweeney, in which he lost his temper and turned - in his words - into an 'exploding tomato,' and a story claiming that wi-fi technology might be harmful, which was denounced by some scientists as 'irresponsible'.

As someone who once spent a year reporting for Panorama myself, I know that no BBC programme is more closely scrutinised and, sometimes, fought over. The fact remains some of its most distinguished contributors, including Tom Mangold and John Ware, have left in recent years, and that it has been repeatedly accused of punching below its weight. Mills is not a marginal figure, and the CBS film with which he was collaborating was much firmer in its conclusion that the McCanns had to be innocent.

Last night the BBC hierarchy was closing ranks to resist Mills's arguments. Outside the corporation, they may not be as easily dismissed.


'Your programme verges on the dishonest'

From: David

Sent: 19 November, 2007 12:12

To: 'Sandy Smith'

Subject: credit

Dear Sandy,

As you know, in the end I felt I could not leave either my name or my company credit on the programme.

In part this is because its muddled structure and lack of narrative drive means it is far below the standard of any work that I or my company would wish to be associated with.

In part, too, my decision reflects the programme's intellectual impoverishment. The McCann case poses issues of real importance which Panorama should have examined. That it is instead running a laboured, pedestrian extended news report is shameful.

But the most important reason for my decision is that because the programme is insufficiently analytical; it verges on the dishonest. Our lengthy investigation revealed that there is no meaningful evidence against the McCanns. Our CBS colleagues concluded that it was 'ludicrous' and 'crazy' to think them involved and that ... 'the child was abducted'.

The real question must be how, without any meaningful evidence, the Portuguese police and the media in Portugal and Britain have been able to convince most people that the couple were involved. Yet while the programme drips innuendos against the McCanns, it does not put a single challenging question to anyone in the Portuguese police or to anyone in the media. This is truly astonishing.

David Mills
Guardian


Tip of the hat: ?

*Transparent in this instance, being far from a compliment.

David Rose Previous



Wednesday, February 24, 2016

David Rose "Coconut-Dog" Man Madeleine McCann


An odd title you might think, but reason enough for choosing it.

Since near as long as I have been familiar with the name David Rose, I have been aware of the role of this piece of human detritus, that of Gatekeeper (Wiki) and general lacky for the security services.

What I wasn't aware of however, until today, was the existence of a "confession" to that effect.

Spies and Their Lies

David Rose
New Statesman
1 October 2007

British intelligence has long used clandestine "undeniable briefings" to release information real and false to tame hacks including David Rose...

My secret life began, as if scripted by P G Wodehouse, with an invitation to tea at the Ritz. The call came at the end of the first week of May 1992. I was the Observer's home affairs correspondent, and at the other end of the line was a man we shall call Tom Bourgeois, special assistant to "C", Sir Colin McColl, the then chief of the Secret Intelligence Service. SIS (or MI6, as it is more widely known) was "reaching out" to selected members of the media, Bourgeois explained, and over lunch a few days earlier with McColl, my editor, Donald Trelford, had suggested that I was a reliable chap - not the sort, even years later, to betray a confidence by printing an MI6 man's real name. Would I like an informal, off-the-record chat? You bet I would. "I make no apologies for the cliché," Bourgeois said, "since we do need a way to spot each other. I will be in the lobby, with a rolled-up copy of the Times." More Where in my opinion, the veracity of every word is questionable.

If the veracity of every word is questionable, then why am I featuring this slithering visage of the globule of evil that forms itself into a vaguely human form every now and again that is, David Rose?

Well it was the viscous, shit-smelling goo that forms the life ooze of netherworld evil that pollutes the soil of the earth, once again shifted itself into the shape of David Rose and brought us this

I confronted the sweaty, corpulent figure in an ill-fitting jacket twice last Friday: the first time at 10am, as he sat slurping coffee and cakes at the Kalahary cafe in Portimao with his colleague, Chief Inspector Guillermino Encarnacao; the second just before 3pm, when the two men made their way from a restaurant to a waiting black Mercedes, in which they were driven 400 yards to meet officials at the courthouse. Lies, beatings, secret trials

Pretty bad huh? But nowhere near as bad as Rose's attempt to trash everything and everybody, dogs included, who seek some kind of justice for the victims of the appalling abuse, including murder, that were carried out at Jersey hell-hole, Haut de la Garenne.

'Human bone' at centre of Jersey children's home inquiry is actually a piece of wood or coconut shell
By David Rose
18 May 2008

The "remains of a child" discovered by police investigating allegations of abuse at a former children's home on Jersey is really a small piece of wood or broken coconut shell, The Mail on Sunday has learned.

The discovery of the fragment in February prompted police to open an inquiry into a possible murder at the Haut de la Garenne home; and this week detectives are set to announce further evidence which they believe shows that another two dead children were buried in the cellar. 'Human bone'

Rose does not however opine on the organic structure of numerous childrens' teeth uncovered in similar locations. But of the cadaver dog's findings, no such reticence.
 
His [Harper's] murder inquiry began when Eddie, an "enhanced victim recovery dog", began barking in the cellar of Haut de la Garenne – the sign, according to its handler, that he had detected the scent of human remains.

By coincidence, the dog, from South Yorkshire Police, is the same animal that supposedly picked up "the scent of death" in the apartment where Madeleine McCann was last seen in Praia de Luz in Portugal.

Supposedly.

But nice of you to bring the McCanns up, for it is a certain McCann supporter, one that operates on a sub level to the rest of us, both intellectually and morally, that, in spite of the appalling suffering of the children Haut de la Garenne, quotes Rose and his coconut in incessant tweets on Twitter.

And does it with some glee I add.




Clicking here may seriously damage your intellect

No agenda here then? Articles by David Rose Journalisted


Bungled Jersey child abuse probe branded a '£20million shambles'

How police chief Lenny Harper lost the plot over the Jersey children's home 'murders'

 

 'Human bone' at centre of Jersey children's home inquiry is actually a piece of wood or coconut shell

 

 Madeleine special investigation: The damning case against the Portuguese police - and how Kate and Gerry are coping one year on

 

Madeleine: Detective to be tried for perjury in child murder case

 

 Panorama walk-out over McCann film

 

 Lies, beatings, secret trials: the dark side of police handling Madeleine case

 

Madeleine: Police on trial for torture


Articles NOT by David Rose

Child abuse scandal can of worms – just who is Daily Mail reporter David Rose?

Daily Mail ‘fixer’ David Rose defends paedophilia accused and attacks child abuse victims. Again.

The Death of Satire? The Mail’s David Rose complains about being smeared

Paedo Files: a look at the UK Establishment child abuse network (Lobster)

High level child abuse cover-up? Why has Theresa May barred a US journalist from the UK?




Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Sonia Poulton Brenda Leyland Madeleine McCann


I don't think the article needs an introduction, other than perhaps to mention the inquest of Brenda Leyland. A very shabby affair, a very shabby affair at best.

Update: Audio courtesy of Alan's Antics. Listen

The Untold Story of Madeleine McCann
A War of Information

Production  Journal (2014 - Present)
Sonia Poulton
October 2014

* An innocent woman is dead after posting her opinions on Twitter. Martin Brunt from Sky News door-stepped her after being given her personal details by 'concerned members of the public'.

We are told she has committed suicide after she was repeatedly shown on air and then hounded by members of the British media. Murderers and paedophiles struggle to get the amount of coverage she did.

What was her 'crime'? None, actually, as Leicester Police confirm several months later, but that hasn't stopped the demonisation to death of this woman.

The 'problem' for her is she eloquently opposed the abduction theory of Madeleine McCann and it is my experience, as a journalist of almost three decades, that this is one story where questioning the official narrative is a frowned-upon and seemingly dangerous pursuit. Poor Brenda Leyland. RIP.


* I can't get over Brenda's death. I only had two communications with her on Twitter about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann but her passing has resulted in me screaming inwards. The whole thing stinks and I am disgusted by media peers who primarily act as if she deserved to die. Just awful stuff being written about her.

It's times like this that I realise I am an outsider who managed to get inside. It's a lonely place when people you've worked with for almost 30 years, people who bang on endlessly about freedom of speech and encroaching censorship, and who show no compassion for another human being hounded to death - first on Twitter and then by mainstream media - for expressing her opinion.

* I can't settle. I don't trust what media is telling us about Brenda's suicide. I don't trust the people involved with this case and I don't trust the vicious individuals who are online 24-7 attacking those who dare to question the official abduction theory. I decide to make a YouTube expressing my feelings. I am shocked by the sheer volume of responses. People Tweeting, Facebooking, You Tubing and blogging: 'at last, a journalist who's prepared to stand up and be counted'.

* The story of Madeleine's disappearance has, across the mainstream media board, been portrayed in exactly the same way. Having studied the case since the beginning, including reading end to end the Portuguese police files, I know the story is far from straightforward. Certainly, it's not as simplistic as we have been told. That is what I want to tackle.

It is not an attack on Kate and Gerry McCann but a desire to help find out what happened to Madeleine. Given that millions of pounds have been dedicated to this search, it is clearly a matter of public interest.

I realise that there's not a UK TV company who will commission me to make a documentary that questions the abduction theory in the way that it needs to be questioned. Primarily because most broadcasters have played a part in maintaining the abduction theory and, in turn, shooting down those who oppose it. Like Brenda.

But there's also the issue of how litigious Kate and Gerry McCann have been with media. They have successfully fought, and won, numerous cases against media outlets and executives are worried to put their necks on the line.

I suspect that a TV company will be interested as time progresses but I wouldn't want it financed, and therefore shaped, from the beginning by one. I wonder how I could finance such a project? As a freelancer and a single parent I am not in a position to finance it myself but I know it needs to be made. I mention it to a couple of TV producers of my acquaintance. Both tell me roughly the same thing. 'don't do it, it will be the end of your career'.

How can one story have cowed the media so much? That, on its own, is worthy of investigation but I'm uncertain how it is going to be possible. I will ponder it.

* Mid month and I receive a call from Dave Eden, a former whistle-blowing cop, who has a production company and an online media outlet. He wants permission to use my YouTube in a story they are doing about Brenda and Madeleine. I tell him to feel free to share it far and wide.

I then reveal my frustration about not being able to explore the story from a different angle. Right there and then he says "Let's make that documentary, I'll finance it." I don't need asking twice.

With hindsight I realise the naivety of that moment. The fact is none of us had a clue what a murky, obstacle-prone arena we are entering into. We set out to do it because it needed to be done. Neither Dave or I have ever made a documentary from scratch but seeing as no one else in my profession is prepared to speak up, I don't see what choice I have. I didn't come into journalism to be quiet about things that matter.

* End of the month and we begin filming the documentary outside Brenda Leyland's front door in Leicester, a short drive from the McCann family home. It seems the right and proper place to start. Overnight we stay at the hotel where she died. Our small four person crew all report feeling extremely disturbed during the night. It's horrendous to imagine Brenda fleeing here and dying in the way we are being told. Poor Brenda.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

November 2014

* I take part in a debate on Sky News with media personality Katie Hopkins who has become famous for making bigoted and sensational comments. I mention the dossier that was given to Sky and which led to the death of Brenda Leyland. Within 15 minutes of the debate airing, Sky release a video of it.

It has been edited from six minutes to just over two minutes and has turned me into someone who is pro-censorship. Interestingly, and not entirely unexpectedly, any reference to the dossier has been edited out.

* Days later I manage to get hold of one of the producers involved to ask him what happened. He said there was a temporary editor on who was responsible. He reassured me that such a misleading edit would not be done again, but it's too late.

Hopkins has begun to distribute the edit seeing as it makes her look good and it makes me look as if I want to stop people expressing their views on the Internet. Absurd, of course. Given the reason this documentary started in the first place, it's ironic at best.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

December 2014

* I've talked to a number of people online who have spent many hours disputing, in great detail, the official abduction theory. I ask them to appear in the documentary. All, bar two, refuse. The reason is the same; they are scared that Brenda's fate will befall them.

It's so sad that people are frightened to speak up. Many of them are anonymous online. Several tell me that they are forced to be anonymous because the abduction theory supporters, who frequently refer to themselves as a 'team', have previously contacted their employers and tried to get them sacked - and only for expressing an opinion.

I'm not sure if I believe this story, it sounds a bit conspiratorial for my liking. Until it happens to me, that is. I have collated all the evidence to prove this happens. It's shocking how extensive this is. It is with a legal representative for my protection.

* One of the original McCann defenders, a late middle-aged woman with a social network account that reads like an erupted sewer, has taken it upon herself to start leaving public warnings on social networks for me.

She has long time claimed that she knows the McCanns. People tell me I should be concerned as she was involved in publicly outing Brenda Leyland before her death.

* There are some utterly vile people supporting the abduction theory - and publicly lying in their desire to support Kate and Gerry McCann - and so I contact the Find Madeleine Fund, which the McCanns work on, and inform them of the level of abuse that is carried out in their name.

I want to know if they are happy about these online abusers. I hear nothing. I know the email has been seen because it sends me a notification that it has.


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January 2015

* We continue filming. I am conscious that this is an unusual situation for me. Generally, I enter into a story investigation with no firm conclusion but a desire to explore the truth of the matter.

However, having studied this case from the beginning in 2007, I have never fully accepted the abduction theory as it lacked, what is know in journalism, 'the ring of truth'. Nonetheless I am determined to keep searching for evidence to prove the story, one way or another.

* A former senior policeman, who was involved in the Sky report which led to Brenda's death, has started yelping like a man possessed on Twitter about me. He is not happy about the documentary.

He has been involved with the case from the beginning and has become firm friends with the McCanns. He has taken it upon himself to publicly attack me alongside people who have been trolling me for three years and ever since I began exploring the issue of child abuse in the Establishment.

He openly attacks me alongside a failed politician who is responsible for a misinformation blog about child abuse. Oddly, the ex-cop now has a company that specialises in tackling online abuse. You can't make this stuff up.

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February 2015

* People are already impatient for the documentary to surface, I can't blame them. They have waited eight years, and millions of pounds of public money later, for an alternative view to be aired.

Eight long years in which people have theorised about media blockages on the case. Well I am already experiencing them and people expect me to be able to pull rabbits out of hats and remove the obstacles to this story getting out. I wish I could.

The thing is, like me, most people online have no clue about the true process involved in making a documentary. I get messages saying that I should put the documentary 'on the internet' but that's besides the original point.

There are over 36,000 entries on the subject on YouTube with hundreds of thousands of comments disagreeing with the abduction theory - but that is where it remains: on the Internet.

This is a story that needs to be challenged in mainstream media and on TV and that's where such a documentary needs to be.

Of course there are many advantages on YouTube. You don't have to go through a gatekeeper who has a vested interest in maintaining the status quo and it takes a fraction of the time to do it compared to what it takes to create a film to the standard demanded for TV.

The pros, though, do not outweigh the cons and that is it is too easy to dismiss the veracity of YouTubes because they do not go through the same scrupulous fact checking demanded on TV.

Anyone can make a YouTube and there is no comeback from a legal perspective. A lawyer tells me it's because YouTubes are easy to discredit as the work of amateurs with flawed research.

It's interesting that despite Kate and Gerry suing many media outlets, there is no suggestion of the same happening with the multitude of online videos even though there are some excellent, well-researched ones.

We plough on, driven by the need for the mass majority to understand that there is something very wrong with the version we have been force fed.

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March 2015

* I'm at Sky News for a TV debate even though critics say I shouldn't be on Sky because of Brenda's death. Fact is, these people are missing the crucial point that I stand up for many injustices - including disability discrimination, corruption and poverty - and it is absurd not to use a platform as big as Sky in which to raise awareness to these issues and more.

After I have talked on air, I return to the green room to get my bag. A producer follows me in. He wants to have 'a chat' with me. He says he is aware of the film and he wants to know if there is a 'conflict' with me being on Sky and the film I am making.

I tell him that the film is highly critical of the actions of Martin Brunt and the subsequent death of Brenda Leyland.

Personally, I want to continue working on Sky as there is something else that makes my regular appearances work in favour of the documentary. It's this: when the film is released, and the likely savaging I will take, it clearly shows that Sky thought highly enough of me to repeatedly feature me as a 'journalist and social commentator'. My critics, blinded by their need to tar me, fail to understand any of this and the attacks on me mount daily.

* One of the most prolific McCann supporters, and one who threatened to put Brenda's home details online, has the temerity to show up at Brenda's inquest. It's shocking. Some of these people have no shame. During a break in the inquest, I approach her with a camera and ask her why she is here. She runs away. She wasn't quite so cowardice when she was part of the team bullying Brenda.

Back in the inquest, she sits behind me, pokes me in the back and asks if I want to do a proper interview with her after the inquest. I say yes, absolutely.

After the inquest I wait outside for her. She never appears. One of the ushers tells me she has been hiding in the toilets and has left via the back door. Something - or someone - has clearly changed her mind about speaking out. Mind you, I probably couldn't trust a word she says on camera, anyway. She's been revealed as a prolific liar and bully.

Online she previously claimed that she worked for the police but on camera earlier she denied it. Another rent-a-gob liar upholding the official abduction narrative but a coward away from the relative safety of the Internet.

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April 2015

* We've encountered a problem with the archive footage we will need. It's fairly extensive and costly. I ache to have the freedom of making a You Tube where you can mostly use what you want free of charge, without clearance and under a fair use policy. Alas, a commercial broadcast is a whole different ball game.

First the copyright owner has to agree to use of the material and second, a price has to be agreed. We are looking at tens of thousands of pounds. It's a lot for a small production unit but Dave is right behind this.

* More defamation online about me. It's a shock to discover how many duplicitous characters are online and claiming to want justice for Madeleine but are actively working against the film by taking everything I say and twisting it in deep, dark and immoral ways. I am now use to daily assaults on my character on Twitter, Facebook and in blogs.

One of the shady characters has teamed up with a long term stalker of mine, a man with a history of serious sex attacks, and has run a series of tweets on a forum claiming they are mine. They are violent and vicious tweets written by my stalker and yet the man claims they were written by me. Thankfully, several of the posters call the man out and he is forced to admit that the tweets are not mine at all. The games people play. The question is: why?

*The Daily Star, a British national daily newspaper, has run a piece claiming that the documentary is being made by Lee Ryan, a former lottery winner and my former partner. The article is a lie.

Lee has supplied some filming but that's it. The entire film is my research (with the help of several case researchers supplying fantastic material) and my script. Interestingly, the piece is written by Tracy Kandohla. A woman who has written many biased articles about the case for a number of British newspapers.

Kandohla was at Brenda's inquest and she fixed her sights on Lee outside the court and asked him questions about the documentary. He told her it was not his film. He was clear about that. We have that all captured on film.

Kandohla clearly didn't realise that and so she sold a lying article to a newspaper hoping to cash in on Lee's former tabloid notoriety from over 20 years ago. I'm not surprised. She is too close to the case for any serious objective reporting.

At Brenda's inquest she bragged to me, and others, that she knew Kate McCann so well they did exercise classes together and that she regularly lunched with the McCann's spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, who she quoted in the article.

Mitchell, a Rottweiler when it comes to defending the abduction narrative, refers to me in the article as someone with 'conspiracy theories'. Extraordinary bias, of course, and this is what passes for journalism in this case. That's an indication of what we are up against.

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May 2015

* We're filming in Praia da Luz, Portugal, on the eighth anniversary of Madeleine's reported disappearance. What a beautiful part of the Algarve. The locals are happy to give their opinions off-camera, but not on it. Just like those back home in England, really. I wonder how this story is ever going to be fully told if people are too scared to speak up?

One villager tells me their lives have been turned upside down, people he grew up with originally viewed each other with suspicion because there was an alleged 'kidnapping paedophile' in their midst, he tells me no one believes that now and they are waiting for the day that the official story is fully challenged.

* We finally manage to get Clarence Mitchell on film. He is furious as he has successfully avoided us from the start of filming. His actions show this is a man who is unaccustomed to not controlling media output. Colleagues tell me to beware. Mitchell has many contacts in the media. I'm way past caring how this documentary may, or may not, harm my career. That's a superficial concern to me.

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June 2015

* Dave, from the production company, called. There's a problem with money.
His bank have informed him that all funds are frozen until further notice and pending investigation. What has happened....?

* Undeterred, Dave and I begin editing two versions of the documentary. I have written two scripts. One for a TV edit and one for a long form version. After three weeks in editing we realise in order to complete the project to the necessary standard, we need the backing of a large documentary company. I begin making contact with several reputable ones.

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July 2015

* I am put in touch with an executive at Journeyman Pictures. I spend over an hour one Friday explaining our investigation to her. She loves it and tells me to leave it with her so she can arrange a date for me to come in and talk the project through with her colleagues. She promises to call me after the weekend. The call never came and, despite several attempts to reach her, she refused to take my call.

* A colleague suggests I approach TVF, another large documentary maker and distributor in the UK. Tom, the head of TVF Digital, 'gets it' immediately and, after much persuasion, we begin working together on a TV edit.

As I write this, I recall something he said: "I keep thinking this could take me down but at least I'll go down with you." I am barely reassured but I thank him for his belief in me.

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August 2015

* Tom thinks he has 'just the person' to help me create the type of TV documentary that will get us over the obstacles. It's a former colleague of his who he rates highly.

She has previously produced, amongst other things, a documentary about Kate Middleton which was said to be 'not the usual PR gloss'. Her business partner had also won a BAFTA so I figure this is someone who knows the business well enough and could get our documentary into the right places. It wasn't to be.

* We have the meeting with the producer. She is quick to express her utter disdain for Brenda Leyland. She describes her as 'an unsympathetic character' that people 'wouldn't get'. She feels that Brenda shouldn't be in the final film. I tell her, in no uncertain terms and not repeatable here, that I wouldn't have done the film without what happened to Brenda and to leave her out would be a betrayal of my principles.

Mind you, her disdain is not reserved for Brenda. She said there was a general feeling that people who obsessed about the case online, from both sides of the argument, were seen as weirdos and commissioning editors were not interested in portraying them as anything but.

I left that meeting knowing I couldn't work with her and I expressed as much to Tom a couple of days later. I was still angry with what she had said about Brenda.

Still, she's what I call a 'meme person'. Fills her social media account with memes that say things like 'I would rather live my life like a lion than die a coward' but in reality she's not got the strength to make the difference to this case in the media. All meme, no action. Next.

*I am losing count of how many FOIs I have had rejected now. Apparently Madeleine's disappearance is an issue of 'national security'. Not sure how that is possible but either way trying to get info from Government and Police about this case is akin to getting blood from a stone. It's not going to happen.

*The McCann trolls - and by this I mean the ones who smear and savage those questioning the official story - have written so much about me online it's shocking.

One forum has 80 pages about me, mostly cobbled together from my old articles, and hardly any current discussion about Madeleine. The important thing, clearly, is to destroy me. I suspect poor Madeleine was lost in this a long time ago.

This is a game of saving names and, certainly, money from Madeleine's public fund has been used for reputation management. A very odd state of affairs in the case of a missing child. In almost 30 years of journalism I've never known anything like it.

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September 2015

* Despite having to oversee the day-to-day running of TVF Digital, Tom has taken up the challenge of co-producing a TV edit with me. After several weeks of beavering away he announces he is leaving TVF. Having now worked on this project he says he misses the creative process of film and wants to return to that. He says he is giving me advanced notice so we can complete the film before he leaves. I'm gutted by this turn of events.

* We are starting to get feedback from commissioning editors in the UK and other territories. Globally we're told that there isn't as big a market of interest for the Madeleine story as we had thought. I disagree with this but he says that's what his sales team are telling him.

In terms of UK commissioning editors, we are told that no one would consider our film until legal investigations - the current Operation Grange - is finished.

That's fair enough. I have been conscious not to cause any potential sub judice problems. Ultimately, I just want justice for Madeleine McCann and Brenda Leyland and I don't want the British taxpayers to have shelled out £12million on an investigation without some decent closure.

* Journalist and broadcaster, Andrew Pierce, interviews me about the case for his LBC radio show. He allows me sufficient space to say what I need to without saying anything that will get either of us in trouble. I am impressed with his approach. He also interviews a former Metropolitan senior policeman about the case and it sounds like the cop ate the official abduction press release for breakfast.

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October 2015

* Tom has fallen on the back burner, he admits that he has a lot of personal stuff going on. Nonetheless I am insistent that we will release a teaser trailer on the first anniversary of Brenda's death. I wanted desperately to have had this film out already but that has proven to be unrealistic. I feel the least I can do is release a short trailer to acknowledge the dreadful passing of Brenda Leyland.

On October 4th - a year to the day since Brenda was reported dead - we release the trailer. Later in the day, the official Find Madeleine Twitter account says it is closing down. Newspapers report on the closing of the account but not on the trailer. I am shocked. Not.

* I receive a telling email from a producer I work with. He says there may be a problem in the future because of the new boss. I have no idea what he is talking about. Over the next few months I discover that the new boss is someone who has socialised with the McCanns and my work with the company dries up.

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November 2015

*The attacks on me are so great the Metropolitan police are now involved. I have been targeted for over three years ever since I started writing about child abuse in the Establishment and these same people have now teamed up with the McCann trolls who have been smearing and defaming me. Like attracts like, I guess.

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December 2015

*Dave and I have a meeting with a production company that has worked with mainstream broadcasters. The owner sees the potential and wants to work on a TV edit with us. We will start in January.

* As the year draws to a close, my PA and I decide that we can no longer answer social network questions about the documentary. Throughout the process we worked to be as transparent as possible, completely aware that what this case lacked was that: transparency.

However, enemies of this investigation, and there are a few, have taken the info given out and twisted it to try and work against the documentary.

Sadly, that means we are also restricted from keeping the genuinely interested up-to-date. I hate it when a few rotten apples ruin a barrel but this documentary - and what it is about - is too important to allow for mischief at this stage.

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January 2016

*The deal with the production company has fallen through. More obstacles, more difficulties. I wonder if it's time to call it a day. We've had over a year of challenges, obstacles, loss of income and I have to re-evaluate all this.

Maybe I have it wrong. Maybe all the thousands commenting on the Internet have it wrong. Maybe Brenda Leyland got it wrong. Maybe the abduction theory is right.

I recall a quote 'You're allowed to change your mind...as soon as it becomes clear'.

And I realise that, to date, we have found nothing substantial to make me change my mind. Because of that, we will continue on.

People tell me that as soon as Operation Grange concludes there will be a market for our version. Others have pointed out that there is still an investigation in Portugal and I must be careful not to interfere with the due process. There are so many conflicts to satisfy in this story it's a mammoth task. But not impossible. And it's that outside possibility that drives us on.

That and the fact that we have secured unique footage with those at the heart of this case. Footage that has been copied and securely stored away. Footage that will prove to be immensely valuable to this story in the future.

* My home is now wired up to the Metropolitan Police and we have been placed on 'special schemes' which means that calls from our home are given priority. This is crazy. I am only doing my job but I am being heavily attacked and threatened for it.

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February 2016

* My attackers have now started claiming that I, somehow, have received the funds that were donated to Gonçalo Amaral's Just Giving Fund. This is public donations for the ex-Portuguese cop who has been pursued by Kate and Gerry McCann after he refused to conform to the official abduction narrative.

It beggars belief. These trolls are without morals. They will do and say anything to stop the story being questioned and to deflect from it. Regardless of whether it harms the case for getting justice for Madeleine or not. That is not their priority. Destroying the messenger is.

*I give a talk at a London University. I give them an insight into what my working life, with all the threats and smears, is like. The students are incredibly supportive. This is what it is about for me. Educating those in the dark and fighting against media censorship.

* A strange day as I find myself in the unusual position of partly agreeing with something that Katie Hopkins has said. Having had more than my fair share of TV and radio debates with her, including the Sky debate that was edited and the meaning distorted, I did not expect to read an article of hers that made any sense at all. We are well known opposites but I have to acknowledge her piece for the MailOnline about Madeleine and her parents. She has made errors in it but the essential message - that something is wrong here - still carries.

The comments section is particularly illuminating. Many people expressing relief that not all the media is tamed. She has backed up what I know to be true about media obstruction and the MailOnline - as the most widely read online newspaper in the world - is a fantastic platform to do it from. It doesn't mean I will support her from now on, of course not, but I am reminded of the old adage that even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

* A positive development. A wealthy man has offered to back me in travelling overseas to talk with a broadcaster. Our journey continues.....

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I was naive to think that the British media could openly support my stance. People do in the background but they fear their livelihoods will be put in jeopardy if they go public.

I make it my business to not talk publicly about the media organisations I am currently working with behind-the-scenes for fear they will be targeted, too.

The truth remains, there are people in influential positions in the UK and they have no appetite for questioning the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. I have discovered that they will go so far as to penalise you if you publicly question the official abduction narrative as I have.

This is a story with friends in high places and it involves people who have promoted the abduction of Madeleine McCann to feather their own nests. Irrelevant of the fact that the official abduction narrative does not add up.

Never mind, I have faith that the full story will be explored. Either by me and our small (but passionate and dedicated) team or by someone else prepared to stand up and be counted.

The court of public opinion refuses to accept the official story lock, stock and barrel, and one day our media will have no choice but to truly reflect those serious misgivings. Link

Sonia Poulton
© Copyright Sonia Poulton 2015



Respect Sonia, respect.