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Drunken parents Avoid Justice


The Irish Couple who entered in alcoholic coma in the front of their children fled home. The GNR notified them in a citation that they were expected to appear in court. However, at the appointed hour, the couple was already flying home.

The McGuckin - the Irish couple that left three children in an aparthotel of Vilamoura after having entered in alcoholic coma - decided to follow the example of the McCanns and return home as soon as the Portuguese Justice began to "pinch"[act].

On Monday, at the end of the afternoon, the GNR notified Eamon and Antoinette McGuckin to summon them to the Court of Family and Juveniles of Faro, where they should have appeared yesterday, at 15 hours, and were supposed to have been heard in the scope of a process of promotion and juveniles' protection.

At that time the Irish couple was already travelling with the children to return home, having caught the Easy Jet Flight 6792 to escape the Portuguese Justice. “The intervention of the Portuguese courts lasts only and while the children remain in Portugal”, explained the titular judge of the process, Beatriz Borges, in a notice read by the registrar of the court, Maria Fernanda Simões, according to whom “ there is not another solution except for the shelving of the process”.

The British couple were not constituted as arguidos in spite of having placed three children, with 1, 2 and 6 years of age, in a “situation of danger”.

A Tragedy could have Happened

The McGuckins arrived on Friday to an aparthotel of Vilamoura. They went out to have dinner and when they returned to the hotel they vomited and collapsed, leaving the 3 children on their own. “If the couple got lost and then got in to a state of alcoholic coma in the middle street, a tragedy could have happened since the children would be completely abandoned”, said a source of the GNR.

The children of the couple were helped by employees of the aparthotel and GNR officers who activated the Child Emergency Line, and were sent to the Aboim Ascencão Shelter. The Children were handed to the parents, in a decision made by the Public Ministry, after the Parents were assisted in the Health Center of Loulé.

Consulate Helped the British Couple

When Manuela Castro was contacted by 24horas, the spokeswoman of the British Embassy in Lisbon, stated that the McGuckins received consular support but she denied any diplomatic involvement in the couple’s decision in leaving the Country. “We did not give to them any legal advising. Not in that manner or in any another sense”, Manuela Castro explained. Another diplomatic British source justified the McGuckins return to home with the fact that the Public Ministry didn’t considered the parents to be arguidos.

The couple was notified to appear in court “in the condition of parents, not as arguidos, not even of witnesses”, revealed a judicial person in charge, adding that, in those terms, “they should have appeared but nothing was obliging them in doing it”. Therefore, nothing will happen to the parents.

Social Security Knows

The Social British Security has been already informed by the Portuguese authorities about the danger to which the children of the couple McGuckin were exposed. The family is not likely to escape a visit from the social security services of the region.
According to the titular judge of the process, in the Court of Family of Faro, the British Social Security was informed of the proceedings in Portugal having in mind “the necessity of the protection of the children.”

Portugal Did Everything

If the Court of Family and Juveniles of Faro had decided to be necessary to hear the McGuckins, the court could do it trough a rogatory letter, said to 24horas the attorney António Ventinhas, from Faro. But the Court opted instead to close the case in Portugal. “In this case, the court communicated with the proper Irish authorities. Here, the court could not apply any measures”, explained the penalist Fernando Silva, specialist in juveniles' questions. “The justice, in Portugal, worked. On that night, the children were in danger and the services acted well and quickly”. The couple risks only to be heard by the social services of the area where they live.

Source: 24Horas


  1. they are claiming that the drinks were tampered with (not sure how you do a wink - so I'll do a smile instead) :)

  2. thank you transfattyacid
    I did notice the 'spiked drinks' - it's never the parents fault...always the Portuguese.



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