by Henrique Machado
Five Polícia Judiciária inspectors are on trial over torture on Leonor Cipriano, but the plaintiff’s lawyer, who got involved in this case under orders of the McCanns’ detectives, has already tried a deal. “He proposed to our lawyer that we let Gonçalo Amaral ‘fall’ and in exchange he would redraw the torture accusations against the other four inspectors”, denounces Carlos Anjos, the president of the PJ’s union. And Aragão Correia also confirms: “If the other four want to confess that it was him who gave the order to assault…”
First, “the strange lawyer swap” of Leonor at the beginning of the trial. Then, “the new lawyer, who even admits to having already been paid by the McCann couple’s detectives, attacks exclusively Gonçalo Amaral. When what is the issue is the supposed torture of the plaintiff by other PJ inspectors”. And finally, Carlos Anjos lost his doubts with the “dishonest attempt at a deal”.
Aragão Correia, according to the president of ASFIC, “allows for the conclusion that Gonçalo Amaral is the target. He is only worried about trying the inspector who participated in the investigation into the McCann couple, within the Maddie case, instead of trying the supposed assault on his present client…”
Carlos Anjos advances that ASFIC’s reply was ‘no’. “The five are innocent, and we are either saved together, or we fall as one. This lawyer has worked for Método 3. Then, he tells that the McCanns, or someone on their behalf, asked for him to get interested in the supposed assault on Leonor. That he should discover what Gonçalo Amaral’s role in the entire case was. And now this proposition…”
“Photos of Leonor may have been taken after the 15th”
Apart from the fact that it is “clear” to Carlos Anjos that Gonçalo Amaral “is the target to shoot down in this trial”, the president of ASFIC/PJ recalls that “the only persons who have always maintained the same version, because they speak the truth, are the inspectors. Just listen to the constant contradictions from Leonor – as well as the indications that were given by the director of the prison in Odemira for a service information from the chief of the guards about Leonor’s health condition to be altered. But the stupefying fact is that the person who is on trial for falsifying a service information is an inspector [António Cardoso]. It is already proved that Leonor’s confession [over the death of her daughter Joana] is dated the 13th of October 2004, not the 14th, like the Accusation says, and there is nothing to sustain that the photographs [of the violence marks on the body] were taken on the 15th. They may have been taken days later. The PJ delivered Leonor back to prison only with a few scratches.”
“If the others say that he gave the order…”
Aragão Correia, the present lawyer for Leonor Cipriano who had already admitted to getting involved in the case at the request of the McCanns’ detectives, also recognizes to CM that he tried “to reach a deal” with the five policemen’s defense for the other four to incriminate Gonçalo Amaral. “I confronted the lawyer of the other four inspectors [three of which stand accused of torture and one of falsifying the service information] and I told them that if they wanted to confess that it was Gonçalo Amaral who gave the order to torture Leonor Cipriano, we could try to reach a deal…” Aragão Correia says that “this is normal in any process” – and he refuses to admit that the persecution of Gonçalo Amaral is related to the McCanns. He approached the case on request of the couple’s detectives, but now he guarantees that nobody is paying him.
Employees heard – The trial of the inspectors who stand accused of torture over Leonor Cipriano continues today at the Court of Faro, at 9 a.m., and the testimonies of a prison guard, of the doctors who observed the victim and of the two employees who took the photographs of Leonor’s body at Odemira prison are expected.
Different accusations – Despite Gonçalo Amaral being the target of Leonor’s lawyer, the former investigator of the Maddie case answers over the less serious crimes of omission of denunciation and false testimony. It is Leonel Marques, Marques Bom and Pereira Cristóvão who stand trial for torture. Concerning António Cardoso, the accusation sustains that he falsified the service information.
“We are innocent” – Carlos Anjos never had any doubts about the interest that moves Leonor’s lawyer in the process, yet he clarifies: “The only deal that we accept is the one to clear the five PJ inspectors. We are innocent.”
source: Correio da Manhã, 04.11.2008