by James Murray
Detectives in Britain have passed details of several possible sightings of Madeleine McCann to their Portuguese counterparts following a worldwide internet appeal.
Police in Leicestershire – the county where her family live – were fed information about the sightings after the unique appeal by the London-based Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre last month.
Pictures of how Madeleine, now aged six, would look were featured in the 60-second film called A Minute For Madeleine, which has has been seen by more than 10 million online.
Its aim was to prick the conscience of someone close to Madeleine’s kidnapper. The Leicestershire officers sifted through the information before deciding what should be relayed to Portugal. Detectives there said they would work only on credible new information because they did not want to waste any time on fruitless endeavours.
But the Sunday Express can reveal that evidence they gathered has not been put into the Home Office Large Major Enquiry System (HOLMES) by Leicestershire police.
Last night former Scotland Yard commander Dai Davies said: “I find that unbelievable that key information from Portugal has not been processed.
“To get the full benefit you should input all available information on the crime. It is common sense to provide as many pieces of the jigsaw as possible.”
source: Sunday Express, 06.12.2009
Very Stupid Remarks & Foolish Xenophobic Lies
Police here have given up looking for poor Maddie
By Dai Davies Former Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent, sundaymirror.co.uk 23/09/2007
EXCLUSIVE THE SEARCH FOR MADELEINE DAY 143
In my 38 years of police and private security work all over the world I've never known anything like the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
To the outsider it has all the ingredients of a classic Agatha Christie-style whodunit - but in reality it's far more complex and heartbreaking, because it involves the disappearance of a little girl.
I spent a week in Praia da Luz where Madeleine went missing, "walking the shop floor" as I call it, going over the available evidence and unearthing some startling new information about the case. And in what will surely be another hammer-blow to the McCanns' hopes of finding their little daughter, I've discovered from lengthy talks with my barrister contact that Portuguese investigators have unofficially abandoned the hunt for Madeleine's alleged abductor.
There is now NO detective work being carried out by Portuguese police to link anyone other than the McCanns to Maddie's disappearance. Officially, they say they're continuing the search for an abductor. But their policy is now to only respond to sightings reported to them by Europol and Interpol.
The officers leading the investigation are pinning their hopes on the DNA evidence, getting some sort of confession from the McCanns or their friends, or finding Madeleine's body.
They remain convinced of her parents' guilt, apparently unwilling to consider another scenario, even as their "house of cards" case collapses around them. Another fresh revelation that undermines the Portuguese effort is that police also failed to take DNA samples from Madeleine's little brother Sean, two, and his twin sister, Amelie, until their parents were made "arguidos", or suspects, just over two weeks ago. This failure has seriously undermined the whole forensic case against the McCanns. It means early forensic work is flawed and needs to be re-examined. A process that could take months.
Evidence gathered by the Portuguese police against the McCanns which we have learned about in the past couple of weeks depends entirely on forensic tests, including DNA evidence, so-called bodily fluids and hair.Yet I have found that evidence has been fatally flawed through their own incompetence. The apartment was also not sealed off properly, meaning any evidence was contaminated from the outset.
Also,I can now see the McCanns in no way abandoned their kids, as some have suggested. I was amazed at how close their apartment was to the tapas restaurant. After just a few hours it was also possible to dispel some of the slurs that have been levelled at the McCanns. Gerry did not call Sky TV before he called the police, as the Portuguese media has claimed. Police now know this was done by Gerry's sister, Philomena, in Glasgow. But they have allowed that rumour to fester.
The McCanns are also deeply religious, yet the Portuguese police want us to believe they have disposed of their daughter's body at sea or buried it in unconsecrated ground.
The police now need to halt their campaign to pin this awful crime on two innocent people and bring in new officers for a complete overhaul with fresh eyes. It's back to square one.
MY FOUR THEORIES
1. Maddie was snatched by an opportunist paedophile. He only planned to abuse her but panicked, possibly strangled her and took the body. Profile: White male, 20-35, single, lives with mother. Known to police, knew resort.
2. A planned abduction, plotted in UK, in which she was "snatched to order" by a paedophile gang. Profile: British, male or female, 20-40, living alone.
3. Someone holding a grudge against the McCanns. Profile: Impossible to estimate, but likely to be more than one person.
4. Snatched by local childless couple. Profile: Portuguese, 30-45.
I am afraid to say it is most likely Maddie is dead. AndI fear the failure of the Portuguese investigation could lead to the shadow of suspicion hanging over the McCanns for years to come.
Retired North Wales cop backs McCanns over Madeleine
Sep 27 2007 by Carl Butler, Daily Post
A RETIRED senior detective from North Wales last night publicly backed Gerry and Kate McCann’s battle to clear their names over missing daughter Madeleine.
Dai Davies, a former chief superintendent of the Metropolitan police and ex-head of the Royal protection squad, claims the McCanns are victims of an orchestrated slur campaign.
He told the Daily Post he believes the Portuguese police have abandoned trying to find the four-year-old’s abductor.
Mr Davies, of Llanrug, near Caernarfon, spoke out as a picture taken by a Spanish tourist in Morocco three weeks ago showing a child resembling Madeleine turned out not to be of her.
Reporters descended on the remote hillside village of Zinat in the north of the country after the image of a young girl being carried on a Moroccan woman’s back was flashed around the world as a possible sighting of the four-year-old missing girl. But it quickly emerged the girl in the photograph is believed by villagers to be five-year-old Bushra Binhisa, the daughter of an olive farmer.
Speaking through an interpreter, Bushra’s father, Hamid Binhisa, told him: “Bushra is my little girl.
“She is not Madeleine. I do feel sorry for her parents. I hope they find Madeleine. But Bushra is definitely my daughter.”
Mr Davies, who also worked on the Lucie Blackman case in Japan, the former air hostess who was abducted and murdered, said he was being assisted by ex-detective friends in his investigation.
“We just think it’s time someone was strong on behalf of the McCanns,” he said.
“In my 38 years of police and private security work all over the world I’ve never known anything like the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
“I spent a week in Praia da Luz where Madeleine went missing, ‘walking the shop floor’ as I call it, going over the available evidence and unearthing some startling new information about the case.
“In what will surely be another hammer-blow to the McCanns’ hopes of finding their little daughter, I’ve discovered from lengthy talks with my barrister contact that Portuguese investigators have unofficially abandoned the hunt for Madeleine’s alleged abductor.”
Mr Davies, a former divisional commander in West London, with child protection experience, has “deliberately” not met with the McCanns, but regularly speaks to their new spokesman Clarence Mitchell.
Welsh-speaker Mr Davies retired from the Met in 1998 where he had been the Operational Commander in charge of Royal Protection.
Kate and Gerry McCann: Portuguese cops’ hunt for Maddie “pathetic”
By Lori Campbell, sundaymirror.co.uk 27/07/2008
Portuguese police knocked on just 443 doors in the failed hunt for missing Madeleine McCann.
Their investigation was last night branded “pathetic” by her parents Kate and Gerry, who are furious police did not do more to find their daughter.
There are 7,000 homes in Praia da Luz, the resort where four-year-old Madeleine was snatched – but police went to fewer than one in 10 doors, says a report into the investigation.
In stark contrast, British police probing the disappearance of Shannon Matthews earlier this year knocked on 5,000 doors and searched 2,000 houses.
Nine-year-old Shannon was found in 24 days, whereas Portuguese police have stopped looking for Madeleine after 14 months.
A friend of the McCanns said: “The 443 doors would barely cover 500 yards from the apartment where Madeleine was taken. That is shocking and unacceptable.”
Police didn’t even bother to go out of the resort to question residents in neighbouring towns.
The McCanns expect to see the full police report this week and their team of private investigators will go through every shred of evidence.
The source added: “They will analyse exactly what has and hasn’t been done. If it means going back to the very basics of knocking on doors in Praia da Luz, then they will do it.
“The report shows Portuguese police clearly didn’t do a thorough job from day one. It is immensely frustrating for Kate and Gerry.” Former chief superintendent Dai Davies, who was head of the Royal Protection Squad, slammed the Portuguese detectives’ efforts as shameful.
He said: “It is simply ridiculous they only knocked on 443 doors. That would take just a few hours.
“In the UK, officers go to thousands of doors and don’t give up until they have a lead.
That is basic policing, especially in an abduction case when the child could still be nearby.”
YARD ASKED TO REOPEN MADDIE CASE
Sunday November 8,2009
By James Murray, Investigations Editor
SCOTLAND YARD should be brought in to take control of the investigation to discover what happened to Madeleine McCann.
Kate and Gerry McCann want the Yard’s renowned kidnap team to assess an avalanche of new information after last week’s emotional internet appeal, which generated five million hits from around the world.
Portuguese police, the Sunday Express can reveal, have failed to set up a new phone line for callers to ring with information.
Last night there was fury over the dismissive response. Interpol and Europol are among 163 forces worldwide that have committed to help with the appeal.
Portugal’s Policia Judiciaria is still in charge of the Madeleine case because that is where she disappeared over two years ago.
It would say only that if credible information comes in by fax, letter or email, it would be passed to senior officers if it was deemed “significant”.
There were also reservations last night about Leicestershire Police, who are aiding the investigation from this country because the McCanns live in their catchment area, at Rothley.
Last night former Scotland Yard chief Dai Davies said it was time to let the Yard take over.“Madeleine is a British subject and she deserves the best, which the Yard can provide. It is time to put any daft police protocols to one side and get on with the job of finding her. It is a solvable case.
“It is astonishing and disgraceful that the Portuguese have not assigned a specific team to scrutinise leads which could provide a breakthrough in the world’s biggest child abduction case.
“It is frankly outrageous that the parents of this poor child should be hiring private detectives to conduct an investigation which should have been taken on by the Yard in the first place.
“The Yard has a kidnap squad with a brilliant success record, and access to the best Holmes computer technology, forensics and investigative techniques in the world.”
Holmes, which stands for Home Office Large Major Enquiry System, is a state-of-the-art data system designed to deal with the huge volume of information major crimes generate.
Sources claimed last night that Leicestershire detectives have not been inputting all their information on Holmes.
Police forces across Britain have cracked scores of tough cases using the system because it can be programmed to highlight suspects and analyse the value of myriad leads.
No one was available at Leicestershire Police yesterday to confirm or deny the claims.
On Tuesday, Kate and Gerry, both doctors aged 41, made new television appeals via the UK Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre.
They urged: “Please take a minute and help us bring Madeleine home. Let’s hope and pray this message reaches those who know who took Madeleine and they find the strength to do the right thing.”
On Friday, a Leicestershire Police spokesman said any new information from the CEOPC initiative would be passed on to the Portuguese who would consider credible lines of inquiry.
Requests from the Portuguese to carry out new inquiries in the UK would be co-ordinated by Leicestershire Police.
New images of Madeleine, who would now be six, were shown in a video in English, Arabic, Portuguese, Spanish, French, German and Italian.
One showed how she might appear if her skin had darkened and her hair had been dyed brown to make her look like other children if she is being held in Morocco or Tunisia.
Another time-generated image showed how she might look now with her natural blonde colouring if she is being kept in Northern Europe.
While Kate and Gerry McCann believe Leicestershire detectives have worked hard, they feel Scotland Yard’s experts on kidnap, forensics and offender profiling could bring much needed impetus to the inquiry.
Madeleine vanished, aged three, from the family’s holiday apartment in Praia da Luz on the Algarve on May 3 2007.