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

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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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 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.


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.....


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.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Egypt: If You Want Respect Earn It

If not totally relevant to this particular case, the graphic reflects my basic philosophy regarding Islam.
Before morphing into my new persona, Teddy first made his appearance as my helper/protester in the insane case of "Muhammad the Bear." Have a scroll through, old Ted used to get about a bit in those days.

Ahmed Mansour Karni's birth certificate was presented after state security forces added his name to the list of accused.

So I think we can safely assume that the birth certificate carried the date of birth of the four year old felon and not, as is suggested in the comments, a case of mistaken identity.

A four-year-old boy has been sentenced to life in prison after being found guilty on a murder charge. More

But then can we accuse the Egyptians, in what might still be a case of mistaken identity, of being any worse than the Americans?

Not at all at all, at least the Egyptians don't defer for a decade their petty vindictiveness before going to see: How Many Kids Lives Can We Destroy Today? Do read, it's a shocker.

Try this in Google/Google images if you want more. American school children in handcuffs


Aided and abetted by teach.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Antonin Scalia Immoral and Unacceptable

Yet another cigar.

Immoral and Unacceptable: If Scalia Wanted Respect In Death, He Should Have Shown It To More People In Life

By Abby Zimet
February 16, 2016

In the wake of Antonin Scalia's timely death, officials announce he will lie in repose at the Supreme Court, Republicans scramble once again to obstruct the rule of law and conspiracy wingnuts declaim the need for another Warren Commission because obviously the "razor-thin savior of the traditional ways of America" was murdered by the "forces of Green gangsterism in the White House." Meanwhile, many struggle (or don't) to say something less toxic than the bigot and bully who was "a poison to the nation," who gave us Citizens United, fought tirelessly against equal rights, cavorted with and pandered to the powerful as the Junket King, exploited his own power while spending his ignominious career making the law inaccessible to most, exhibited a lack of compassion one critic dubs "a jaw-dropping imaginative absence," and famously declared that "mere factual innocence" was no reason not to execute someone. (R.I.P. Troy Davis.) So about that whole not speaking ill of the dead thing: As Scalia said after the Bush vs. Gore decision and its awful ramifications - its subsequent mayhem, suffering and innocent deaths - "Get over it.

Progressive powerhouse Elizabeth Warren was one of the first to step forward amidst instant GOP squawking there was no way that black Marxist Muslim bandit Obama can appoint a new Supreme Court Justice in an election year, even though that's already happened at least six times since 1900 and, duh, we already had an election to decide who gets to do that. Calmly citing the clear Constitutional mandate in Article II Section 2, Warren noted, "Senator McConnell is right that the American people should have a voice in the selection of the next Supreme Court justice. In fact, they did - when President Obama won the 2012 election by five million votes...I can't find a clause that says '...except when there's a year left in the term of a Democratic President. Senate Republicans took an oath just like Senate Democrats did. Abandoning the duties they swore to uphold would threaten both the Constitution and our democracy itself. It would also prove that all the Republican talk about loving the Constitution is just that - empty talk."

An elected official, Warren kept things civil on the subject of Scalia - this, despite his rulings that marriage equality and abortion should be subject to state votes, that limitless corporate campaign spending is something “we should celebrate rather than condemn,” that vote-counting in Bush v. Gore should cease before causing mysterious “irreparable harm,” that protecting the right to vote is “racial entitlement” and that allowing local anti-discrimination laws to protect gays and lesbians is “special treatment of homosexuals.” Given his hateful, 30-year legacy of fighting against equal rights, argues Sara Benincasa, the call to civility rings false: "If he wanted respect in death, the man should’ve shown it to more people in life."

Alas, he didn't give it, and now isn't getting it. Apart from obligatory nods of condolence to his family - and alongside queries as to the whereabouts of Cheney in connection with another unfortunate hunting trip outcome - online comments and a multitude of memes have ranged from the truly angry to the gently comic in the vein of Mark Twain's, "I have never wished a man dead, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure." Samples: "I feel as bad for Scalia as he did for blacks, gays and people without health care....Antonin #Scalia requested cremation in his will, but millions of women will meet tomorrow to discuss if that's really best for his body...This would be an excellent day for Justice Clarence Thomas to continue his tradition of just doing whatever Justice Scalia does...My condolences to the Koch Brothers for their loss." Even the quails Scalia was hunting on yet another junket had their bittersweet say. “Sure, Scalia conveniently discarded his entire jurisprudential philosophy in Columbia v. Heller, when he mangled the Second Amendment to allow pretty much anyone with four fingers and a thumb to carry around a gun," noted one aggrieved quail. "On the other hand, that’s all we quail have EVER known. So, you know, welcome to our world, assholes.” Common Dreams

I don't possess a Scalia graphic, I'm sure you will afford me a little licence in the use of Clarence Thomas as a worthy substitute.

Hillary Clinton: At Your Peril

Give this man a cigar.

Hillary Clinton's Appalling Enthusiasm for War

By Bruce Fein

Hillary Clinton exhibits an appalling enthusiasm for United States wars not in self-defense, i.e., legalized murders on an industrial scale that create enemies while destroying our liberties and prosperity at home.

To William Tecumseh Sherman, war was "hell." To Abraham Lincoln, war was a "scourge." But to Hillary Clinton, war is a coveted instrument of foreign policy in which the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must.

If she is elected President, the United States will be fighting gratuitous wars every hour of every day of her presidency. That should give pause. Alexis de Tocqueville admonished in Democracy in America, "All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and the shortest means to accomplish it." James Madison, the Albert Einstein of political philosophy, warned: "No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.

Despite such hallowed wisdom, Ms. Clinton has supported every war initiated by the United States not in self-defense for more than twenty three years since she first occupied the White House as First Lady: Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, ISIS, Al- Qaeda, Yemen, Somalia, and international terrorism generally.

In 2008, she promised if elected president to "obliterate" Iran if it attacked Israel--even if the United States was unthreatened and Congress had not authorized war: "I want the Iranians to know, if I am the president, we will attack Iran... And I want them to understand that... we would be able to totally obliterate them [to retaliate for an attack on Israel]."

In 2011, then Secretary of State Clinton championed a "humanitarian" war against Libya to overthrow Muammar Gaddafi after he had abandoned WMD, Libya had been removed as a state sponsor of terrorism, he had handsomely compensated the victims of the Lockerbie bombing, and he posed no threat to the United States. She has fiercely defended the war as "smart power at its best."

That myopia could be analogized to Japanese Emperor Hirohito applauding World War II as a success by highlighting Pearl Harbor while leaving Hiroshima and Nagasaki unmentioned.
As unfolded in Afghanistan after we ousted the Soviet Union by supporting the fanatical mujahideen, Gaddafi's ouster regressed Libya towards state-of-nature lawlessness. Militias spawned along tribal and ethnic lines. An ISIS satellite emerged in Sirte. Gaddafi's conventional weapons fell into the hands of terrorists. No central government took root. Our Ambassador was assassinated in Benghazi in a terrorist assault. Refugees by the millions fled from Libya across the Mediterranean to destabilize the European Union.

Ms. Clinton's "humanitarian" war precedent invited Russian President Vladimir Putin to invade Crimea professedly to protect Ukrainians of Russian ethnicity from persecution.

As a United States Senator, Ms. Clinton voted to authorize President Bush's gratuitous war against Iraq to overthrow Saddam Hussein, who was a virtual cost-free Chinese wall against Iranian regional hegemony. She irresponsibly neglected to read the 90-page classified National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq that wrongly concluded Saddam possessed WMD. She supports continuing United States military engagement in Iraq on behalf of a Shiite government which is beholden to Iran, repressive towards Sunnis and Kurds, and a catalyst for ISIS.

Ms. Clinton supports a reprise in Syria of her "smart" humanitarian war in Libya to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad through bombings and assistance to splintered Syrian rebels schooled in extremism, bigotry, repression, and violence.

She supports continued military engagement in Afghanistan as far as the eye can see and beyond to prop up a corrupt, tribal, unpopular government.

She supports the President's playing prosecutor, judge, jury, and executioner to kill any American citizen whom intelligence gurus decree is an imminent threat based on secret evidence unshared outside the executive branch.

She supports presidential authority to invade the sovereignty of any foreign nation by using predator drones to kill persons suspected of complicity in international terrorism espied within its borders.

She supports confrontation with China over the South China Sea to assist erstwhile enemy Vietnam.

She supports unilateral presidential wars unauthorized by Congress in violation of the War Powers Resolution and Article I, section 8, clause 11 of the Constitution.

Since Libya under Gaddafi is her standard for initiating humanitarian wars, a President Clinton could be expected to attack North Korea to overthrow President Kim Jong-un before her inaugural address concluded.

If you want a Goddess of War in the White House who will destroy our liberties, freedom and solvency, vote for Hillary Clinton. Huffpo

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

The Sirens of The Lambs by Dr Martin Roberts

The Sirens of The Lambs
By Dr Martin Roberts
February 10, 2016

“Eeyore, Eeyore”

It would appear that much can be gleaned from the ‘sound of sirens’, just as Simon and Garfunkel once suggested. Jenny Murat in particular was in no doubt about that on the morning of Friday 4 May, when interacting with a lady journalist (Maria Cecilia Pereria Peres) and an unidentified male, while visiting unoccupied premises in Praia da Luz. According to the journalist’s account of their conversation (as given to police on 23 May, 2007):

“The previous night she heard the Police arrive, due to the sirens, according to her at 22h00. The old lady said she had been eating dinner with her son when she heard the sirens, that is the Police, it being that it was at that time that she became aware of the disappearance of a girl from the ‘Ocean Club’.”

Thus sirens at 22.00 equals ‘Police’, associated with personal awareness of a little girl’s disappearance.

Immediately one has to ask how any of this is at all possible, when the local police were not contacted until 22.40 and the first patrol to arrive turned up at 23.00? Even they didn’t know the nature of the crime they were sent to investigate until they asked at the Ocean Club reception!

Jenny Murat seems to have been ahead of the game somewhat.

When interviewed by police 11 days later (15 May) she had rather more to impart:

“About 19h50 she went to the ‘Batista’ supermarket to buy bread. Then she went back to the house where she arrived more or less at the same time as Robert. Later they sat in the kitchen where they were talking for some time, having also eaten.”


“While they were talking in the kitchen, she is not able to say when, she recalls having heard a siren ringing at least once. Although not usual, she also did not "connect" because it could possibly have been an ambulance. (She recalls that sometimes, when the wind blows in a certain direction, it is possible to hear in the house sirens of police cars or ambulances that pass on the EN125).”

So, sirens don’t necessarily equal ‘Police’ after all, their sirens being indistinguishable from those of ambulances in Portugal, according to Jenny Murat at least. Wrong. The Portuguese emergency services (police and ambulance) operate quite different sirens on their vehicles, except at night, when they are not utilised at all.*

If we now juxtapose this observation of Jenny Murat’s with that of her son Robert on the same topic, things then take a very odd turn indeed.

From his arguido statement of 11 May we learn that:

“He was home with his mother, when at 22:30 or a little later, he heard a siren of an ambulance or police. He commented on that with his mother, however, did not leave the house to investigate. He did not leave again until the morning, having gone to bed around midnight.”

Once again the identity of the siren remains unspecified.

Besides wondering why anyone would step outside their house to ‘investigate’ a distant siren, there is an obvious discrepancy between the two reports of half-an-hour to account for. However, if an emergency services siren should be heard in the Portuguese Algarve, any unfamiliarity with the sound would be dispelled by seeing the vehicle to which it belonged. If Robert Murat didn’t bother to take a look outside the house, and there is no indication that his mother did so, how was she able to conclude, for the benefit of her Friday morning acquaintance, that a siren heard at 22.00 signalled the police arriving to investigate the disappearance of a little girl?

Given her advancing years, and offering a generous helping of charity, we might imagine that Jenny Murat latched onto the detail of events as reported earlier that Friday morning and simply ‘put two and two together’ as regards the siren she says she heard at 22.00, and which her son describes as audible at ’22.30 or a little later.’ In reality, even had the GNR turned up at the Ocean Club with their siren wailing (which we have it on good authority they did not), it wouldn’t have been much before 23.00. And what we do not get from either of the Murat’s is a conspicuous connection between the sound they claim to have heard a considerable distance away and a more blatant announcement in Praia da Luz, anything up to 30 minutes, or even an hour, afterwards.

The pearls of redacted uncertainty do not end there however.

Selfless altruism?

According to Robert Murat (in relation again to the Thursday):

“(He) headed for his residence, where he arrived between 19.15 and 19.30….He does not know if his mother was at home, but thinks so….After entering, he may have taken some tea and turned on the TV or it was already on. He may also have read a newspaper. He talked with the mother, who if she was not there had arrived shortly afterwards…. He ate a sandwich of cheese and ham sitting in the kitchen with his mother, until 22:00 or 23:00.”

So Robert’s mother, Jenny Murat, may (or may not) have been at home when Robert himself may (or may not) have had a cuppa, and may (or may not) have turned on the TV, before reading a newspaper (or not) and speaking to his mother (who, don’t forget, may not in fact have been there at the time).

And this from someone who purports to be a businessman?

But do let’s pay attention to the last of the imponderables in this instance:

“He ate a sandwich of cheese and ham sitting in the kitchen with his mother, until 22:00 or 23:00.”

Jenny Murat too has a ‘take’ on what transpired in her kitchen, and when. It is somewhat different to her son’s account however:

“She recalls that they were talking until close to midnight”.

Some latitude in recall is all very well, but 11.00 p.m. cannot be considered ‘close to midnight’, much less 10.00 p.m. Things start to go even further awry when the PJ question Robert Murat a couple of months later (11 July):

“Questioned he says that when he heard the sound of a siren he was with his mother in the kitchen, still talking, it would be about 22:00/22:30”

And then the ‘maybe, maybe nots’ are remorselessly exposed:

“He remembers that at one time he spoke with his mother, however he cannot recall whether she arrived meanwhile or she was already there. He remembers that they were sitting in the kitchen and the defendant remembering that he ate, how long with his mother he does not remember. Confronted with the testimony of his mother who told that she arrived at the house around 20.30 and that Robert had also arrived at that moment, he says that he cannot account for having arrived at the same time as his mother.”

What are we to make of these peculiar discrepancies?

First, let’s reprise a particular couplet of Robert Murat’s:

“He ate a sandwich of cheese and ham sitting in the kitchen with his mother, until 22:00 or 23:00.”


“He was home with his mother, when at 22:30 or a little later, he heard a siren of an ambulance or police.

Obviously, if option 1 (22.00), embedded in the first of these statements, is correct, then Robert Murat would not have heard the later siren from his mother’s kitchen at all. If the siren event were genuine, he must have been conversing with her there for longer to have heard it from that same location. And if it were not genuine?

If the siren were more imaginary than real, then Robert Murat could conceivably have parted company with his mother as early as 10.00 p.m. Of course “She recalls that they were talking until close to midnight”, but then she also either fails completely to recall when she heard the mystery siren, or positions the experience chronologically at 10.00 p.m.

The bottom line, as they say, is that, of the two persons who experience the same unidentified sound, only one, Robert Murat, places it comfortably within the hour between 10.00 and 11.00 p.m. His mother puts it no later than 10.00.

Since it is an occurrence they apparently discuss between them, we might suppose Robert Murat’s whereabouts at the time to have been his mother’s kitchen. Both the fact of the siren and its timing are of some significance therefore. ‘Genuine and late’ affords Murat the younger an alibi for an hour of some importance. ‘Fictitious or early’, however, and he could have been anywhere. Jenny Murat does her level best to repel boarders by talking until ‘close to midnight’. Unfortunately for her son, she seems unable to defer what they were talking about.

The power of suggestion

Another reprise is appropriate:

“He was home with his mother, when at 22:30 or a little later, he heard a siren of an ambulance or police. He commented on that with his mother, however, did not leave the house to investigate. He did not leave again until the morning, having gone to bed around midnight.”

Besides driving home the point that ‘he did not leave the house to investigate’ (Why would he? The supposed siren was nowhere near), Murat junior describes having ‘commented on’ the siren ‘with his mother’.

This seems an odd turn of phrase; one which has probably migrated in translation from, ‘mentioned to his mother’ (as in, ‘Did you hear that siren, mother?’), following which, Jenny Murat dutifully logs the experience in her mind’s ear, to be recounted in due course. There is no reciprocal suggestion on her part that she brought the sound to her son’s attention or ‘discussed’ it in any way. As she says, she did not ‘connect’ with it.

Robert Murat, having introduced a shared, putatively relevant exterior reference, is therefore free to position it in time, thereby confirming his own whereabouts. What he fails to anticipate, however, is his mother’s dogged refusal to advance her own auditory clock beyond 22.00, even by half-an-hour.

This is yet another story badly told. Just how badly we may judge from the following:

RM: “He ate a sandwich of cheese and ham sitting in the kitchen with his mother, until 22:00 or 23:00.”

JM: “She recalls that they were talking until close to midnight”

And to which we might add:

RM: “I was in my mother’s kitchen until one a.m.” (to Judy Bacharach, Vanity Fair contributing editor, and reported in the article, ‘Unanswered Prayers’, Jan. 31, 2008).

Between them Robert Murat and his mother wish it to be known that Robert went to bed that night, sometime within the four-hour period 10.00 p.m. to 1.00 a.m. Given such a range, it is perfectly reasonable to suppose that Robert Murat was not in fact inside the house at all between 10.00 and 11.00 p.m., never mind the kitchen.

Of course ‘they were talking until close to midnight’.


If there is one item of domestic equipment the use of which is guaranteed to kill any conversation stone dead it is a computer.

Robert Murat had no recollection of using a computer that night, a situation confirmed by forensic analysis of his personal device, which CEOP, in their report complementing that of the PJ’s own technical staff, helpfully labelled ‘Robert’. However, there was another device in almost continuous use that same night, and which CEOP have identified as ‘Jenny’ (no prizes for guessing to whom that one belonged). According to CEOP, ‘Jenny’ the computer was switched on and utilised by Jenny the user, from 10.00 p.m. until 11.34. If Jenny Murat was ‘talking’ all that time, then it was via a keyboard.**

Placing the last of Robert Murat’s above-mentioned claims in its proper context disperses a little more fog:

“All I can say is that I am innocent. There is no way I was at the resort that night. Full stop. I was in my mother’s kitchen until one a.m. Yes, we are a kitchen kind of family. I spent the night at the house.”

Robert Murat may not have been at the resort, but there are lots of other places he might have been. And spending the night somewhere is what we do when we sleep through the early hours. It does not necessarily embrace something we might choose to do beforehand, whether there or somewhere else.

Robert Murat’s explanation of his whereabouts during the crucial hour 10.00 – 11.00 p.m. on Thursday night 3 May, 2007, is clearly suspect, his alibi being furnished unconvincingly by his own mother, who, when interviewed subsequently by the media said, on her son’s behalf, that he was

"Very bitter. Somebody has set him up."

"How do you think that happened?"

"We don't know. Probably the people who did it."

I can understand being angry (livid actually) at being ‘set up’ by a perfect stranger, but ‘bitter’? That’s more a description of how one might feel toward a duplicitous acquaintance, close or casual.

And who set Robert up? Why, ‘The people who did it’. Not the by-now-over-the-hills-and-far-away abductor you’ll notice, but the people plural, who had obviously stuck around to see to it that Robert Murat was ‘clocked’ that Thursday night.

This was of course Jenny Murat talking, not Robert. That’s what it looks like anyway. But when you consider that she is describing her son’s emotions, how on earth is she to know he feels ‘bitter’ without either asking him or being told. It’s not something one can read in another’s facial expression. For this moment on record, therefore, it is indeed Robert Murat talking, albeit by proxy, and it behoves us to listen just as carefully to what is being said here as to the sound of sirens.

 Martin Roberts

*a previous discussion of the siren story can be found here, under the title ‘All the world’s a stage 1/3’:

** The CEOP report of Jenny Murat’s computer usage is of further interest in that it does not tally precisely with the data exhumed by the PJ. Certain activities recorded by the PJ, and of potential interest, are given scant mention by CEOP. On the other hand CEOP refer to tasks, e.g. a call to ‘’ on the night of 3 May and subsequent computer gaming, of which the PJ’s own ‘trace’ provides no record. It is noticeable, possibly noteworthy, that Jenny Murat spent 12 minutes examining, reading and deleting e-mails on the afternoon of 2 May, something she did not do on the 3rd, the 4th or the 5th. It was during the morning of 2 May of course that Gerry McCann received those dozen voicemail messages that he and his PR henchman have always strenuously denied. (see pages 1152-1159 and 1164/1165 here:

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Comments and Link Dump

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

When you are so disposed kiddywinks, a clean sheet awaits you here.