1.Everyone shall possess the right to freely express and publicise his thoughts in words, images or by any other means, as well as the right to inform others, inform himself and be informed without hindrance or discrimination 2.Exercise of the said rights shall not be hindered or limited by any type or form of censorship Constitution of the Portuguese Republic, Article 37.º

Jon Corner: A funny guy

Kate and Gerry McCann were named as arguidos on 7 September, but were allowed to fly back to the United Kingdom on 9 September. This interview with Jon Corner was aired also on the 7 of September: Madeleine McCann's Mother Suspect.

Jon Corner
is a film producer who filmed and
sold the Mccan's footage in Huelva, Spain and in Portugal that was acquired by Panorama's Former Producer David Mills , he is also the new board director (to lend his expertise in media) to the Madeleine's Fund. Mark McQueen, headteacher of Ursuline Primary School is godfather to Madeleine’s brother, Sean and Jon Corner is the godfather of Madeleine's sister Amelie.

The Transcript

At the top this hour, a missing little girl and a shocking new development. A friend of Madeleine McCann's family says the mother has been named as a suspect. Under Portuguese law, someone named as a suspect has the right to certain legal protections not extended to a witness.

An even bigger shock may be a forensic discovery. The four-year- old's blood reportedly found in a rental car. Now according to a family friend, that car rented by Madeleine's parents more than three weeks after her disappearance.

Madeleine McCann vanished in May during a family vacation to Portugal. Her parents had left her alone with her two-year-old siblings while they went out to dinner.

The family's plight has seized international attention. Her parents met with Pope Benedict at the Vatican and have enlist of supporting celebrities. Today, Madeleine's father is expected to face police questioning.

So here is a look at the timeline of the Madeleine McCann case. May 3rd, her parents report her missing. The next day the local police are criticized for slow response. Several days later, police say they've investigated 350 suspicious incidents. They say none have generated leads in the search. One week later, police identify a suspect. But, they say, there's not enough evidence to file charges. August 10th now, Gerry and Kate McCann say they won't leave Portugal until their daughter is found. That brings us to yesterday. Madeleine's mother faces 11 hours of police questioning.(....)

HARRIS: John Corner joins us now. He is a friend to the McCanns and the godfather to their twins.

John, good to talk to you.

What is your reaction to the news that Kate McCann is now a suspect in the disappearance of Maddie?

JOHN CORNER, FRIEND OF MCCANNS: Well, I'm appalled, but I'm also frustrated. You know, I've worked very, very hard with Kate and Gerry in the campaign to find our missing child and our missing Madeleine. And what we're worried about truly is that this investigation or this new line that the Portuguese police have taken is going to derail those real efforts.

You know, we were in Spain only a few weeks ago and dropping posters in different towns in Spain. And what we were amazed that is 50 percent of the people that we were approaching had never heard of Madeleine. And that's what we're up against right at street lev
el of getting those posters out. And that advice had come to us from the U.S. The International Center for Missing and Exploited Children have been marvellous in their support and guidance and direction. They're the world experts. And they're saying to us, you know, six months in an average time. So hang on in there. Keep looking for Madeleine. And now this.

HARRIS: Well, John, I'm trying to understand here, Kate is now an official formal suspect. You believe she had nothing to do with this disappearance?

CORNER: Absolutely. Absolutely.

HARRIS: So why do you think she's a suspect? And have you heard -- you certainly are aware of the new evidence that seems to be pointing, at least the authorities, in her direction?

CORNER: Well, you know, whenever Kate and Gerry hear that there's new evidence or new technological evidence, it gives them hope because they think the Portuguese police are going to have a new breakthrough, it's going to lead us to whoever's abducted Madeleine. It's going to allow us to get her back home safely. And I think it's truly frustrating and exasperating. It's just dreadful that the mind set of the police is quite the opposite, that they're actually looking into the parents and not looking out, not doing the search, not doing the intensive work that we really need . . .

HARRIS: You would have been surprised -- John, you would have been surprised if the authorities hadn't looked at the parents, wouldn't you?

CORNER: Well, you know, Kate and Gerry were interviewed at some length in that first few days. Interviewed extensively. And that's good -- that due diligence, that's good practice. You know, all police forces do that. You look, you interview the parents, you clear them and you move on and we get out there and find Madeleine. And for us to come full circle after four months is just dreadful. It's (INAUDIBLE).

HARRIS: Well, how do you explain the apparent break-through in the case? You mentioned a break-through a moment ago. Well, there has been a break-through in the case, according to the authorities. How do you explain the blood in the rental car? A car rented more than 20 days after Maddie was reported missing? How do you explain it?

CORNER: It defies explanation, quite frankly. I have no idea. It flies in the face of common sense. I could speculate all day about that, but . . .

HARRIS: Well wait a minute, John. I mean this is DNA evidence. This is DNA found in a rental car that was rented by the couple 20 days -- I'm just asking you, how do you explain it?

CORNER: It makes -- I can't explain it. It makes no sense. It makes no sense.

HARRIS: Do you or do you not . . .

CORNER: I just know that . . .

HARRIS: Do you not trust what the authorities are saying to you? Have you talked to Gerry or Kate about the new evidence?

CORNER: No, I haven't. Not about new evidence. Only about the police line of questioning last night. And, quite frankly, it makes no sense to me and I can't speculate on it. You know, it just -- it makes no sense at all.

HARRIS: So the authorities come back, let me just try this on you. The authorities come back to Kate and to Gerry because the question lingers, who leaves a three-year-old to watch two-year-old twins. Who does that?

CORNER: Well, you have to understand the situation. I think the only thing that Kate and Gerry are guilty of is a little bit of complacency. It's a very, very sleepy town. Well, it certainly was before the media . . .

HARRIS: Complacency? How about neglect?

CORNER: There has been police force (ph) . . .

HARRIS: How about neglect? How about child endangerment?

CORNER: Well, I disagree with that. I disagree with that. And if you talk to the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, they disagree with that, too.

HARRIS: So as a general practice, it's OK with you, in your mind and the way you think for a three-year-old to be left to care for two- year-old twins?

CORNER: I'm not sure that's productive at this stage to talk about that. I mean, I've been to (INAUDIBLE). I've looked at it very carefully myself. And it literally was like sitting in your garden. That's how far away the apartment was.

HARRIS: OK. John Corner is a friend of the McCanns and, John, some tough questions to ask you, but we appreciate you stepping up to take those questions on for us.

HARRIS: Appreciate it. Thank you.

Jon Corner now On Board

Jon Corner - the friend and filmmaker who rather strangely videoed the parents in June - some footage of which was shown on the unflattering BBC Panorama programme - is now officially on the Fund's board of directors following the resignation of Kate's old school-friend Esther McVey, and one other.

Jon Corner's contribution included the most bizarre footage of Kate shown to date, and the odd shot of Gerry hunched over his PC with the voice-over explaining that he was 'searching for Madeleine'.

Now why would this good friend of the family and godfather to the twins choose to release to Panorama these rather eye-opening scenes? In the light of yesterday's revelation of discussions with a 'proper' film production outfit, (the ones who made Touching the Void) maybe he is a little miffed. If they burned his company in search of a better offer, he might have decided that "we were so into each other, you know?" and "whoosh, cluck" should be put out there. On the other hand if he is as lacking in self-awareness as G and K themselves, perhaps he didn't see any harm in any of the content of his videos.

More on the fund from their own website:

Two of the directors, Brian Kennedy and John McCann, are members of Madeleine’s family. The other five directors are independent appointments. They were appointed to ensure the Board of Directors had independence and the range of skills required to manage the Fund.

The Huelva Trip

The couple's spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, told Daily Mail “that Mr and Mrs McCann, both
39-year-old doctors from Rothley, Leicestershire, have a full account of their visit to Huelva
. He said the couple were never alone during the trip and were always in the company of PR adviser Jon Corner and a cameraman.”
According to Clarence Mitchell, “there is even a video of the trip on the website YouTube,

showing the McCanns handing out leaflets as part of their drive to find their daughter. Mr Mitchell said: "Kate and Gerry stopped several times to distribute leaflets and they had the car boot open all the time."They transported all the campaign material in it. If there had been a body in there, people would have seen." Spanish authorities said yesterday they have not been asked to investigate the Huelva trip.

Renault Scenic :1700 km

Shenguen Countries: Spain and Portugal
Schengen Countries

Maps and Measures:

120 miles = 193.12128 kilometers between Huelva and Praia da Luz
25 miles = 40.2336 kilometers between Huelva and the Border with Portugal

Google Map from Praia da Luz to
Huelva, Andalucia, Spain - (Portugal on the Left):

190 km – about 1 hour 57 mins

Image of google map

View Larger Map (interactive)

Some things to remember:

They arrived only to find the town all locked up because of
Colomina, a Huelva only bank holiday (3 August 2007). The trip was delayed just because Gerry had a stomach "bug". The trip was taken just days before the famous British sniffer dogs went to Praia da Luz. The Renault Scenic made 1700 km in just over a month. Or about 1000 miles in a month.

Police are puzzled by the high mileage on the car, which was driven 1,700km between May 27 and July 3.

Mr. McCann said he had clocked up so many miles because he was continuously driving back and forth from Praia da Luz to Faro airport to pick up family and friends.

“A new push to publicise the search for Madeleine McCann has had to be delayed as the four-year-old's father is suffering from a stomach bug. Updated posters of Madeleine have been printed in the latest appeal for information. Gerry and Kate McCann had been due to travel to the Spanish city of Huelva to begin handing out the posters and meet politicans. The fresh campaign is timed to coincide with the upcoming 100-day milestone since Madeleine's abduction in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz. But the plans have been put on hold until Mr McCann has recovered from his illness (...)”

Police are suspicious because the couple did not arrange any meetings with dignitaries.

A police source told Correio da Manha: "The trip to Spain on a national holiday raised suspicion and investigators have been to the country trying to find out where the McCanns went."

Link to the Youtube/Huelva trip video

First Reactions: Kate Rings Jon Corner

Distraught Kate rang long-time friends Jon and Michelle Corner, the twins’ godparents, at their Merseyside home to break the news.

Jon, whose wife grew up with GP Kate in their home city of Liverpool, said: “She phoned at about 3am. She just blurted out that Maddie had been abducted.

She told me, 'They have broken the shutter on the window and taken my little girl.'

"They had left the apartment locked while they were having their meal, but when they went back the last time they saw the damage."

After speaking to her a second time, he repeated his earlier account, but this time in stronger language

He told how tearful Kate sobbed down the phone early yesterday: "Someone has taken my little girl."

He continued: "She was in an absolutely hysterical state - very, very distressed. She blurted out Madeleine had been abducted.

"Kate said the shutters of the room were smashed. Madeleine was missing It looks as though someone had gone straight past the twins to get to her. Kate was incredibly upset. I've spoken to her since, and she's still completely devastated.

"She's also very upset that the police don't seem to be doing more to find Madeleine. She thinks there's too little happening."

The Liverpool Daily Post also speaks to Jon Corner and reports a very similar conversation:

Jon Corner, founder of Liverpool-based River Media, is godfather to the McCann’s twins and his wife has known Mrs McCann since they were both three. The co-founder of city centre-based River Media, and a father-of-three himself, said: “Kate phoned me in the early hours totally devastated."

"She just told me that Maddy had been abducted, that the shutters of the apartment had been forced and someone had taken her."

"Maddy was asleep in the room with Sean and Amelie and whoever has taken her has gone straight past the sleeping twins, left them completely alone and snatched Maddy."

"Kate is just so distressed. She doesn’t know what to do. It has knocked me and everyone else for six. It doesn’t actually seem real."

Link to Daily Telegraph article - original quote from Jon Corner

Link to Daily Mirror article - second quote from Jon Corner

Link to Liverpool Daily Post article - third quote from Jon Corner


Fox and Larry King Transcripts. What next? Oprah? Dr.Phill?
Joining us in Liverpool, England is Jon Corner, a friend of the McCanns, parents of the missing little girl, godfather to Madeleine's younger twin siblings. And he has been speaking with Madeleine's mother, Kate....

Panorama Transcript: The Mystery of Madeleine McCann
BILTON: Jon Corner is a film producer, he's also godfather to the McCann twins. The McCanns say, because he's a friend, he's invited to make a film for the launch of the YouTube channel for missing children and on August 1st he arrives ...

Panorama BBC Mystery of Madeleine McCann
The footage - filmed in Portugal by friend Jon Corner and to be shown as part of a Panorama programme on Monday - captures a time when suspicion over the disappearance began to fall on the couple. The McCanns, both 39, became suspects ...

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