At the moment that we are told that the solution to the investigation into the death of little Gregory [4 year old boy, murdered in 1984] might come out 1 from the end skirts of the Iberian peninsula, the Inspector Amaral sees the door (of the closet) closing on him.
What other relationship, you could ask me, exists between these two cases except that the victim is a child? Basically: a failure from the start. In Maddie's disappearance, shortly after a few weeks, the coordinator of the investigation was discarded: he had become a nuisance. And today, he has many troubles. What he faces is too big for him, the little Portuguese cop, and he is on the brink of being broken 2. Hotshot lawyers drag him to court. He must confront them. Just because the parents of Madeleine McCann did not accept the thesis of his book: the accidental death of the child and concealment of her body in order to make credible the kidnapping. Which we can certainly sympathize with, even if the arguments of the investigator hold solidly that line [i.e. supported by facts].
Just like they did previously with several British newspapers, now they require an amount that makes one's head spin: 1.2 million in damages and interests. To defend himself, the former police officer has applied for legal aid.
Three days ago, in a press release, Gonçalo Amaral has denounced the censorship that is being made to his book (a bestseller translated into 5 languages) and to the film adaptation that was based on it. In this text, he considers himself to be the victim of a serious attack on his freedom of expression. The court, inclusive, prohibits him from "quoting, commenting or analyzing any part of the book or of the video that defends the thesis of the death or the concealment of the body." And according to my contacts in Portugal, many were surprised to see in this way tampered a constitutional right.
We must recall here that in the absence of a complaint (the word is not entirely correct 3) by the parents of the victim, the investigation has been «archived», and by the Portuguese procedure the file has become public.
Amaral's book has been withdrawn from sale, and it seems (if my translation is correct4) that the copies in English did not had time to be spread. Thus far, it as not been banned in France. However, the debate to be held on Wednesday, October 21 at channel W9 broadcast of 'Criminal Investigations: the magazine of current affairs', has been canceled without anyone knowing why.
Having myself not able to cope with an armada of lawyers, I will not comment. But for us French, the process of opening a commercial site * The online store of Madeleine (Madeleine The Online Store) seems a bit strange. It is hard to imagine parents doing business selling search posters (£ 1.75 for 10), bracelets, or t-shirts bearing the face of their missing child (£ 7) ... This is not really in our culture.
To be quite honest, as I found sympathetic the reaction of the former police officer who wanted to proclaim "its" truth, all the commercial aspects that followed bother me 5.
Finally, it seems that it's all a matter of money.
* See in the business pages of Google. I do not link to not advertise.
in Policetcetera blog
1. "sortir du placard", word game meaning coming out of the closet; here expressing 'opening a door in the investigation', not the coming out (of the closet) with an homosexual connotation.
2. sur la paille, literally meaning sleeping in a straw bed - i.e., being broke.
3. The McCanns as parents of the victim and as assistants to the process could have requested the investigation to be reopened. Why they never asked this, is a mystery to me.
4. This is clearly a mistake by the author, since the book version in English does not exist nor was it ever published. The pre-recorded interview with Gonçalo Amaral and the documentary based on his book 'Maddie, The Truth of the Lie' were forbidden to be broadcast at Channel W9 with an injunction or threat of injunction by Carter Ruck, the McCann lawyers.
5. Clearly Monsieur George Moréas fails entirely to address the fact that Mr. Gonçalo Amaral left the PJ Institution to be able to express himself freely, which he could not have done had he stayed in the Judiciary Police, thus he was able to expose publicly the truth of the facts pertaining to the investigation of the Maddie Case and that are in the process released by the Public Ministry, loosing not only a job that he was passionate about and quite good at it but also a vast amount of his retirement.