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One Year Without Maddie: The mystery begins at 18,30h

It was shortly after 22,00 when Kate went to the room and shouted from the balcony: "They took Maddie, they've taken her". This happened almost a year ago but it is still very vivid in the memory of some of the employees of the Ocean Club, in Praia da Luz.

No one is able to remember how many minutes before Maddie's mother left the table. They only know that when help was asked, Kate was already near the flat with one of the women of the group. "She seemed hysterical and the only thing she was saying was that someone had taken the kid. Everybody left the table and the confusion was established", reminds one of the employees.

[image: vision of the McCanns apartment is reduced from the Tapas Bar and the distance is 120 meters = 131.233596 yards - unless they could fly over the pool obviously...]

But the mystery of the British kid began at 18,30. What happened till 20,00 in the apartment where the McCanns spent holidays with the three kids continues to be the doubt of the investigators of the Judiciary Police (PJ), one year later.

At 20,00 the couple entered the Tapas restaurant where they dined with the friends. "Everyday they dined at the same table. It was not strange to us", reminded to CM the same source of Ocean Club.

Kate, Gerry and the friends were in an oval table. Before dinner they asked for "strawberry daiquiris and martinis" and only after 21,00 the meal began to be served. The group was cheerful. Around 21,00 dinner is served. One of the employees remember that one of the elements of the group was not in the table. The physical description coincides with Russel O'Brien, "I remember because someone asked us to keep the meal".

Kate gave the alert at 22,00 but the GNR was only called at 22,40. "I only realised that was Kate's daughter when she gave the documents to the GNR. Till then I didn't realise that she was the mother", reminds the witness. Around 02,00 the PJ began to inspect the place, collecting vestiges and following the hypothesis of a kidnapping.


The team that investigates the case have already made a reconstruction of what happened on the night of 3rd of May but during the day.

The CM found that the reconstruction was made in the end of October in the days that the team directed by the new coordinator Paulo Rebelo returned to the flat and to the Tapas restaurant.

Some actions were made like passing objects from the inside to the outside of the apartment or simply measuring distances. Also in the Tapas restaurant at that time was asked to the employees to put the table and simulate the dinner that took place the night that Maddie disappeared.

"It is a procedural process that is done to gather clues that were collected, cross information and depositions or to confirm a confession" explained to the CM a judicial source.

The second step of this kind that the PJ wants to make "will be to reunite the participants in order to see all possible details about what happened that night", explained the same source.

A reconstruction can be asked by the PJ or by the Public Prosecutor that is in charge of the case.

As the CM reported it was asked to the group of nine persons that spent holidays in the Ocean Club their collaboration to make this reconstruction but there are no answers yet if they are going to be present or not.


Some of the employees that worked in the Ocean Club did not know that the group had children. One of them referred to the CM that he was "astonished" when the alert was given. "I never saw them with children. The parents came always alone and only after that we began to think that the children always stay in the rooms sleeping alone", said one of the employees that had the night shift and is no longer working in the resort. The group of adults took the kids to the crèche of the Ocean Club where they had several activities. Only in some situations they were together, adults and children, in the pool.


The first indications that the McCanns gave to the police after the disappearance of their daughter was that the living room door in the back of the flat where Maddie slept with the twins was opened. "It was through that door that they checked the kids. The blind was open and it was just needed to open the windows to enter the flat. If someone had done that they would not be able to see it from the restaurant", said to the CM a source of the Ocean Club.

The other references were about the window of the room where the kids sleep, that the parents commented that night that "could have been opened".


Resumed: In the two-hour programme, the couple say they talked about going to another restaurant, the Millennium, with the three-year-old and her brother and sister, but decided not to because it was a half-mile walk and they did not have a buggy. [No watches, No mobile phones and now No buggy....maybe they were never in Portugal? ]


Leaks of Information

In April, the McCann went to Brussels, where Kate said: "Our statements reached the press through the Portuguese police". [remember it was in a talk show from Spanish Telecinco TV Channel that Nacho Abad revealed this 'exclusive', he never presented any documents to proof the leak was from the Portuguese Police ]

Deal with PJ

In the documentary broadcasted yesterday by ITV, Kate makes reference to a plea bargain proposed by PJ confess accidental death. [this was dismissed even by their own lawyer and its illegal in Portugal, the PJ does not offer deals]

Rebelo Checked all the Windows

The new coordinator of the PJ Paulo Rebelo accompanied in the detail one of the reconstitutions of what happened in the night of the 3rd of May, analysing all the windows of the house.

They didn't check 15 in 15 minutes

Maddie's parents told the PJ that they checked the children every 15 minutes but a source of the Ocean Club reaffirmed to the CM that "it was not with that regularity".

Neighbour wanted to Help

The upstairs neighbour Pamela Fenn that heard Maddie crying the night before wanted to help but Kate did not accept the suggestion.

Translations to English

When around 23,00 hours the GNR arrived some of the employees of the Ocean Club made the translations of what the couple and friends said. Only after that the PJ was called.

Searches in all the Area

The area was searched during the night by Gerry, friends and several citizens. In the morning the authorities launched the biggest search operation ever made in Algarve.

The first thesis is of abduction

In the second day of the search the PJ admits that it could be an abduction with sexual intentions.

The development of the investigation ended to conduct to a suspicious of homicide.

Source: Correio da Manhã

Translation Li/JM

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