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

The parents of missing Rothley girl Madeleine McCann have withdrawn their High Court bid to force disclosure of information held by police.


Court 20 Before MRS JUSTICE HOGG
Monday, 7 July, 2008
At 10:30 AM
IN OPEN COURT
FD07P01121 McCann
Applications/Summonses in Court as in Chambers
FD06P01276


Mrs Justice Hogg, who has effectively been Madeleine's legal guardian since her parents applied for her to be made a ward of court last year, said she had excused the McCanns from attending the hearing because "they have suffered enough and I wished to ease their burden".

"The McCanns will now pass on the information to Metodo 3, the Spanish-based detective agency which has been following up reported sightings independently of the police, for them to conduct their own inquiries." 

Source: Telegraph

Note: How biased and prejudiced is that the same Judge, who is Madeleine Beth McCann Ward of Court - that is, the guardian of Madeleine's interests - is the same one judging the McCanns parents accesses to the UK police files belonging to a Portuguese process where they, the parents are in fact the main suspects of crime?

Since when are Suspects/Arguidos allowed to get their hands on investigation files? Why did this Judge made a statement affirming the McCanns innocence, 'pushing' the abduction thesis who has been promoted solely by the parents and Tapas friends, whose televised statements were incongruent and failed to give a consistent explanation for their alleged kidnap theory. Isn't she obliged by Law to preserve a neutral stance? It would have been scandalous for a Portuguese judge to make this type of partial statement, under such circumstances.

No comments regarding the Spanish Based agency; sufficient to say that one of their own investigators working in this case was arrested for drug trafficking.

News from the UK:

The parents of missing Rothley girl Madeleine McCann have withdrawn their High Court bid to force disclosure of information held by police.

It came after Leicestershire Police agreed to hand over a limited number of documents to Kate and Gerry McCann.

They believe the documents will help in the search for Madeleine, who went missing in the Algarve over a year ago.

Source: Teletext

Herald [excerpt]:

Mr Mitchell said: "They will be strengthened and touched by what Mrs Justice Hogg said.

"It was immensely kind. In the context of the courtroom, it was a statement she did not have to make. It was extremely supportive and very generous and kind.

"I know Kate and Gerry will be incredibly touched."

Madeleine vanished from the family's holiday apartment in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz on May 3 last year shortly before her fourth birthday. No one has been arrested or charged in connection with her abduction.

The couple's counsel, Tim Scott QC, told the judge today there was no proof that Madeleine was alive, "but there is not a scrap of evidence that she is not".

He said the McCanns acknowledged the enormous effort devoted to the search by Leicestershire Police and other law enforcement agencies.

Shortly after their daughter disappeared, the judge, in the High Court Family division, granted them a wide order requiring anyone on whom it was served to disclose relevant information to their solicitors.

The police were among those served with the order and serious issues then arose about the public interest in maintaining confidentiality of police investigations.

The Serious Organised Crimes Agency and the Attorney General intervened to advance their own arguments on public policy.

Mr Scott said it became clear that areas of law of great interest to lawyers would have to be considered.

"Gerry and Kate McCann are not lawyers and so far as they were concerned the legal proceedings were moving further and further from the only matter which concerns them - the search for Madeleine.

"The proceedings were in danger of becoming a distraction from, rather than an aid to, that single goal," he said.

Mr Scott said the information to be released by the police related to telephone calls made to the McCanns' solicitors and passed on to Leicestershire Constabulary's incident room during the early stages of the inquiry.

The chief constable has now agreed to provide contact details and a summary of the information provided by those early callers.

The McCanns' search for their daughter continued in accordance with the title of the fund they set up to help them in their task, Madeleine's Fund - Leaving No Stone Unturned.

James Lewis QC, for the police, said Chief Constable Matt Baggott shared that aim, but felt it was vital to balance the understandable desire of the McCanns to have as much information as possible against the risks of compromising the continuing criminal investigation, damaging future international co-operation and breaching Portuguese law.

The material to be disclosed consisted of 81 pieces of information out of more than 11,000, said Mr Lewis.

Approving the settlement of the case, the judge amended her original wide disclosure order to state that it did not apply to Leicestershire Police or any other UK law enforcement agency.

Sky on line and Express run a very similar story

Their private investigators will now work with 81 files gathered by Leicestershire Police in the days immediately after the toddler vanished.

Today at the High Court, the McCann's lawyers withdrew a bid to force the disclosure of all the information held by the police force.

Kate and Gerry McCann, both 40, did not attend the High Court hearing.

Sky News crime correspondent Martin Brunt said: "It sounds like a compromise."

He said Leicestershire Police would now share with the McCanns 81 files - out of some 11,000 different "bits of information" they held on the case.

The parents, who wanted to avoid a legal conflict with the police while at the same time obtaining as much material as possible to help in their continuing search, were content to withdraw their case.

Their spokesman Clarence Mitchell, speaking on the steps of the High Court in London, welcomed the move.

"All of this is important information. We now have 80 new leads for our investigators to work on," he said.

In court, Mrs Justice Hogg urged anyone with information about Madeleine to come forward.

"There is, of course, one person who knows what has happened to Madeleine and where she may be found," the judge said.

"I ponder about that person - whether that person has a heart and might understand what it must be like for Madeleine to have been taken and secreted from her parents and siblings and those she loved and felt secure with.

"I ponder whether that person has a conscience or any feeling of guilt or remorse or even cares about the hurt that has been caused to an innocent little girl, and whether that person has a faith or belief and what explanation or justification they might give to God."

Madeleine was three when she vanished from the family's holiday apartment in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz on May 3 last year.

Mitchell added: "Kate and Gerry very much welcome that a compromise has been reached.

"This is very good news for the investigation."

Mirror [excerpt]:

The McCanns' spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, said outside court the couple would very much welcome the 80 pieces of information which the police had agreed to release.

"These are 80 potential new leads. We have information we can work on," he said.

The couple were also looking forward to much greater disclosure of information once their status as "arguidos" or formal suspects was, as expected, lifted by the Portuguese authorities.

Mr Mitchell said: "They will be strengthened and touched by what Mrs Justice Hogg said.

"It was immensely kind. In the context of the courtroom, it was a statement she did not have to make. It was extremely supportive and very generous and kind.

"I know Kate and Gerry will be incredibly touched."

Madeleine vanished from the family's holiday apartment in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz on May 3 last year shortly before her fourth birthday.

No one has been arrested or charged in connection with her abduction.

The couple's counsel, Tim Scott QC, told the judge today there was no proof that Madeleine was alive, "but there is not a scrap of evidence that she is not".

Guardian:

Madeleine McCann's parents today withdrew their high court request for British police to release documents about the investigation into her disappearance.

The legal challenge was withdrawn after a hearing in which Leicestershire police said they would share 81 pieces of information with the McCanns. The information relates to calls received from the public shortly after Madeleine disappeared on May 3 last year.

"Each of these is important information. We have potentially 81 new leads," said the McCanns' spokesman, Clarence Mitchell.

He described the decision by Leicestershire police as "very good news for the investigation". Mitchell said he could not go into details of the information being released but he hoped more would be forthcoming.

"The critical thing is that this is early information and potentially strong information," he said.

Kate and Gerry McCann, both 40, were not at the hearing. Mitchell thanked Mrs Justice Hogg on their behalf for pointing out that there was no evidence that Madeleine had been harmed or was dead. He said there were 11,000 pieces of information held in total and just one could provide the clue to her whereabouts.

Madeleine, then three, vanished from the family's holiday apartment in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz while her parents were having dinner in a restaurant nearby. Last week it emerged that Portuguese police had handed their file to prosecutors recommending that the case against the McCanns be dropped due to lack of evidence.


Note: PDF Document Link - Madeleine McCann Ward Of Court: Judgement of Mrs Justice Hogg at the High Court, Family Division, RCJ, London, 7th July 2008 in Open Court

5 comments:

  1. So now we can expect a new churning out of reports of suspected abductors, as the McCann team works its way throught the list of 81 leads.

    Is the UK court ruling admitting that their own country's official criminal investigative abilities are so limited that they cannot ably follow through on leads provided by the public to rule in or rule out each one? They are providing information on the case to official suspects in the criminal case and making claims that said suspects are innocent of the crime at the same time.

    Now more innocent people may be exposed to the McCann machine and publicly linked to the abduction in the press, possibly irreparably harming their reputations, whether or not they had anything to do with it. We've seen the tactics used previously by the McCanns' representatives. Why would we expect things to progress differently now with this new information?

    The court should be ashamed of itself. What a disgrace!

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  2. From what has transpired in this case, I can't say that I'm surprised. In most other countries a judge expressing her opinions as to the guilt or innocence of a suspect even before the suspect has been tried, would put the judge under review and he or she would likely be disbarred. I would like to hear comments from British citizens as to whether this type of behaviour by a judge is commonplace in Britain. In making these pronouncements the judge is saying that the British justice system has
    already concluded that the couple is innocent and that the Portuguese and British police are incapable of doing their work. The question I have is: was the Portuguese Police consulted when this accord was made, and if not are they at least aware of which pieces of information were handed over? Are the British really worried about breaching Portuguese law and damaging future international cooperation? One can only guess at what the couple really seeks to do with this information, was the process itself just another attempt to convince the public that they are really looking for their daughter or do they really think that there will be a trial and that these pieces of information are critical for their defence? What does this say about a prosecutor's chances of succeeding if this case is even brought to trial in England? I know that the Portuguese Police's reputation has been unfairly dragged through the mud, but I would say that British democracy is also being dragged through the mud and with good reason.

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  3. Dear Guerra being british and not knowing much about the law in britain i also share your concerns where a judge is able to make a judgement like that before a case has been tried god help me if i did something wrong and had to face a judge who didnt like the look of my face i would be hung before sentenced.

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  4. Note to self:
    PRACTICE DIRECTION 12D – INHERENT JURISDICTION (INCLUDING WARDSHIP) PROCEEDINGSThis Practice Direction supplements FPR Part 12, Chapter 5
    http://www.justice.gov.uk/guidance/courts-and-tribunals/courts/procedure-rules/family/practice_directions/pd_part_12d.htm

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  5. is justice hodge accountable then for checking that madeline fund accounts and that it is ran in her best interests and not just a scam for parents to use on lawers etc for themselves .

    ReplyDelete

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