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 Madeleine Foundation - A Request of the Portuguese Authorities

The Madeleine Foundation has opened the New Year with a message that was submitted to several Portuguese institutions, including the Ministry of Justice, pleading for an inquest – or its equivalent under Portuguese law – to be performed in the case of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

Deborah Butler, chairman of the private organisation, and Anthony Bennett, a retired solicitor and present secretary of the foundation, request the Portuguese authorities to pursue further measures, in order to fully clarify the circumstances under which Madeleine McCann disappeared, on May 3rd 2007, from Praia da Luz. They have mailed a copy of their book, "What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann? - 60 Reasons which suggest that she was not abducted", together with the letter that we reproduce below.


Dr. Alberto Costa
Ministério da Justiça
Praça do Comércio
1149 - 019 Lisboa

Dear Dr. Costa,

Please find below our letter asking you to hold an inquest into the disappearance or death of Madeleine McCann.

So many of us in the United Kingdom and Portugal believe that Madeleine deserves an enquiry into how she disappeared - or perhaps died in Praia da Luz on or before 3 May 2007.

For your information, together with this letter we enclose a copy of our book: "What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann? - 60 Reasons wich suggest she was not abducted", which has been on sale in the U.K. since 8 December.

Also for your information, here is a list of other Portuguese agencies to whom we have sent this letter:

Direcção Geral da Administração da Justiça
Av. 5 de Outubro, nº 125
1069 - 044 Lisboa

PGR Attorney General's Office
Procuradoria Geral da República
Dr. Pinto Monteiro
Rua da Escola Politécnica, 140
1269 - 269 Lisboa

Bar Association
Ordem dos Advogados
Conselho Geral
Largo de São Domingos, 14 - 1º
1169 - 060 Lisboa

Head of the Criminal Department
Policia Judiciara Criminal Department,
Rua Pé da Cruz, 2,
8500-640 Portimão

Yours with great respect,

Deborah Butler, Chairman
Anthony Bennett, Secretary
The Madeleine Foundation
66 Chippingfield
CM17 0DJ
Tel: 0044 1279 635 789
Mobile: 07835 716537

The Madeleine Foundation
Combating child neglect

Registered address:
66 Chippingfield, HARLOW, Essex CM17 0DJ
Website: www.madeleinefoundation.org

Dr. Alberto Costa Thursday 1 January 2009
Ministério da Justiça
Praça do Comércio
1149 - 019 LISBOA

Dear Dr Costa

re: Holding of an Inquest into Madeleine McCann's disappearance /death

I write to you on behalf of The Madeleine Foundation, a membership organisation in the United Kingdom dedicated primarily to keeping alive the issue of child neglect, which we feel lies at the very heart of the case of the 'disappearance' of Madeleine McCann. At the same time, I am pleased to enclose for your attention the booklet we have published this week, titled: "What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann? - 60 Reasons which suggest that she was not abducted". It is not yet available in Portuguese.

We have examined the statement of the Portuguese Attorney-General, made in July this year [2008], in which he announced that the investigation into Madeleine McCann's disappearance/death will be 'archived', or shelved, pending new evidence becoming available. We have also seen translation of police documents and DVDs on the case released over the past few months by the Portuguese police.

It is our view, based on the evidence – and shared we understand with the former lead investigator in the case, Goncalo Amaral - that Madeleine died in Apartment 5A in Praia da Luz, and that the parents, together perhaps with some of their other friends who were with them in Portugal, have covered up the death and know what has happened to Madeleine's body. According to the police reports and other indications, there is much evidence pointing that way. In summary, it includes:

a) the powerful evidence of the cadaver dogs, who located the smell of death, i.e. human cadaverine, in three or four locations in Apartment 5A, in the McCanns' hired car, their Renault Scenic, on the clothes of Kate McCann and on the T-shirt of one of the children, and on the soft toy known as 'Cuddle Cat'
b) evidence from DNA samples of body fluids which we understand, in summary, indicates that Madeleine died in apartment 5A but does not prove it
c) contradictory statements by the McCanns themselves and their friends about the events of 1st, 2nd and 3rd May, including various changes of story by the McCanns, and contradictions between what they, their friends and other witnesses say about the events of 1st to 3rd May 2007.

Goncalo Amaral in his book: 'The Truth about a Lie" suggests that Madeleine died in Apartment 5A and that the McCanns faked the abduction. We think his conclusion is very possible.

Had these events occurred in the United Kingdom, an inquest would - sooner or later - be held. In the U.K., inquests can be held, even in the absence of a body, if there is some evidence that the person (or child) is dead. For example, an inquest was held a few years ago on a canoeist whose kayak was found drifting in the North Sea, though no body had been found.

We write therefore to enquire if there is any similar provision in Portuguese law. Our concern is that, now that the police investigation has in effect been suspended, there is a real risk that all the circumstances surrounding Madeleine McCann's disappearance will not become known. An inquest provides an ideal opportunity for all relevant witnesses to be required to give their testimony, and be questioned. The sooner this takes place, the better, as witnesses' recollections fade, and evidence is lost.

There is much evidence in this case, thousands of pages of it according to the Policia Judiciara report released in July and since. We believe it is vital that this evidence should be presented in a court as soon as possible.

Could you please advise us as soon as possible if there is any provision in the Portuguese judicial system for holding an inquest, or any other similar public enquiry into a person's disappearance and possible death in Portugal - and also please inform us whether any moves have yet been made in Portugal to hold such an inquest or inquiry into Madeleine's 'disappearance'.

I await hearing from you.

Yours sincerely

Deborah Butler
Chairman, The Madeleine Foundation


For further information about the Madeleine Foundation, please visit their website.

You can download an excerpt here from "What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann? - 60 Reasons which suggest that she was not abducted", which includes some of its most persuasive arguments, according to Mr Bennett: Reason 2 - The evidence from two highly trained cadaver dogs who found the ‘smell of death’ in several places in the holiday apartment where the McCanns were staying - and in a car they hired three weeks later; Reason 7 - The sheer impossibility of the abduction happening as claimed; and Reason 21 - The hiring of very dubious firms of so-called ‘private investigators’.

These texts are made available to our readers, courtesy of The Madeleine Foundation.


  1. very good. I hope it reaches the authorities, but if I may suggest you should send ot to the several comissions on the Assembly. Alberto Costa, the PS ministre is going to simply ignore it. You have to enlighten the several parties in the Assembly and I think that some of them will bring it on discussion.


  2. Thank you, Deborah Butler, Anthony Bennett, The Madeleine Foundation, a joint British voice asking for the TRUTH about Madeleine McCann, the same TRUTH some British institutions and media appear to be so keen to hide. Thank you and the best of luck in finding out what really happened to Maddie.

  3. The Madeleine Foundation - A Pledge with the Portuguese Authorities,

    Congratulations, Madeleine Foundation, for your initiative. Congratulations, Tonny Bennet, for your book 'What really happened to Madeleine McCann?, 60 reasons which suggest that she was not abducted'. I have read it, it's full of objective, factual information, a must for the anglophone reader who has been saturated with UK media misinformation on the McCann case.

  4. Thank God someone is taking action, rocking the boat, awakening the sleeping dragon! Is the shit finally hitting the fan(s)?
    Also, along with clarifying the circumstances of Madeleine's disappearance, the inquest must also clarify the circumstances that led to the premature end of the investigation and it's archiving.The public is entitled to the truth, to know once and for all who commanded the dismissal of mr.Amaral and why!

  5. I hope I'm wrong, but I'm afraid this pledge will get no answer, the several institutions will be deaf and blind to it, maybe they will issue a polite, standard reply aknowledging its reception, then shove it in the bottom of a drawer and let it there collecting dust.Maybe in the future, if the powers change hands in the next general elections...who knows?

  6. This is great.No fear, just trying to find out the truth.
    Would it be wise as well if Mrs.Butler and Mr. Bennett would officially aproach the British authorities, with the same request?She was a British child, victim of disappearence, what is the British police doing for her?Nothing!Her parents are responsible for her disappearence and not even an inquire in Britain?The police are also responsible for their citizens, aren't they?
    May God bless you both, Bennet and Butler!Keep fighting!

  7. Are there no provisions under the BRITISH law that would allow for an inquest to be performed by the British authorities?

    A British subject has disappeared, a Ward of Court as far as we know, and nobody on British soil could care less?

    We've seen so many examples of the British authorities disrespecting sovereign countries and their institutions whenever a British national was harmed - why aren't we seeing any such action in this case, a high-profile missing child's case?!

    I congratulate The Madeleine Foundation for their efforts, although I fear that they will never obtain a single reply, as unpolite as that may seem.

    But I'd sooner expect something to give somewhere on the British end of things, than in Portugal, where the corrupt government and the corrupt higher levels of the judiciary have been duly rewarded by certain individuals.

    I hope that some day, we can see Justice done and Madeleine's memory respected - as well as the public's most fundamental rights.

    Thank you, Ms Butler, Mr Bennett. Thank you, Joana and Astro.

    God bless.

  8. Who is talking about corrupt Portugal? What about the controle
    the British media are suffering since the very beginning of this case?They can not publish what they know.What about the British police delaying a lot information to the Portuguese police, like the sexual incidents around one of Tapas 7?Denying information about credit cards of Tapas 9, which was asked by Portugal?What about the British ambassador abandonnend diplomacy immediately after the couple was made arguídos?What happened to Maddie's DNA tests?And why Amaral's book is not yet in the UK? Come on!Is Portugal the guilty one?

  9. Well done, Madeleine Foundation, its time to put an end to the corrupt British government cover-up of the Madeleine McCann crime. The case must be reopened, justice must win.

  10. Boa sorte para a Madeleine Foundation por este passo firme e decisivo! Um grande obrigado à Madeleine Foundation em nome de Maddie e da Justiça!

  11. With Amaral in Portugal and now Butler and Bennett in England, we can hope for the end of the 'abduction' charade so pathetically supported by the British media and hope for justice for Madeleine McCann - her parents have neglected her and what else they may have done to her and her corpse, her parents and their supporters have wasted police money and tax payer money, exploited old age pensioners and children who gave money to their company fund, insulted the Portuguese police, tried to incriminate innocent people as 'abductors', and this is not all, the list could go on; isn't it so?

  12. If Madeleine McCann had been a Portguese girl visiting an English seaside resort, and had 'disappeared' in similar circumstances - with cadaver dogs indicating that she had died in her parents' holiday apartment, then under our Coroners' Act, the Coroner would be duty bound to hold an inquest into a 'missing child presumed dead' (provided there were no longer any outstanding criminal proceedings against anyone, which there are not in this case).

    The question now is - are the Portuguese authorities able and willing to hold such an inquest?

    Or will the circumstances under which Madeleine 'disappeared' never reach a judge and jury?

    Here's hoping for a full inquest/inquiry in Portugal.

    Tony Bennett
    The Madeleine Foundation

    P.S. Thanks for all nice comments, duly noted, they all act as a spur, they are not wasted

  13. I take my hat off to mr Bennett, direct action is exactly what is needed. I see he posted here, can I ask what he thinks of a fund being made to search the area in the photograph found in the villa after the McCanns left?I would dig deep for this.

  14. Mr Bennett, if you meet with inertia from the Portuguese authorities, could you take action yourself, you have the legal know-how and have done a pretty good job so far. Someone will have to clarify this McCann case and find justice for Madeleine. Without being sorted out, this sordid case will encourage criminals all over the world (the McCanns have made it known world-wide) to copy the McCanns - evade justice and make a fortune will look attractive to criminals, the McCanns may know that.

  15. Dear Mr.Bennett and Mrs. Butler,

    Please keep fighting. As far as I know you are the first people in England who are fighting for justice for Madeleine.Nobody from her family, cousins, uncles, aunts are doing it.The poor child.The Portuguese police were and still are on her side but they need your help.Did you observe that the McCanns still did not sue Gonçalo Amaral and the person of Tapas 7, suspected of child sexual tendences, did not sue him either?
    They know Amaral is right, don't they?Senhor Amaral, quando sairá um novo livro seu? Com o resto da história?

  16. It would be invaluable help if someone who reads and posts on this blog, and, has juridic knowledge or training in portuguese law, could shed some light on what can be done from a legal point of view to set the wheels in motion, and push for an inquiry.

  17. Hear! hear!, Anonymous 06/01/09 11.49, on what you suggest in respect of someone with juridic knowledge or training in Portuguese law who could shed some light on what can be done to push for an inquiry. Perhaps Goncalo Amaral could help, I understand he is a lawyer.

  18. Responding to this comment: "Can I ask what [Mr Bennett] thinks of a fund being made to search the area in the photograph found in the villa after the McCanns left?" My answer: I am not sure. First, would it not be necessary to get permission from the Policia Judiciara? And also from the landowner. Then where do we look? Maybe Eddie the cadaver dog should visit there first?

    The question about Portuguese inquest law is I think quite simple. In England, if a child has gone missing in circumstances where there is at least some evidence that the child is dead, an inquest must be held even if there is no body.

    One thing I find very interesting. The McCanns don't want any inquest or inquiry, and if you visit all the forums and blogs, neither do their supporters. Why not? Don't they want to find out the truth?

  19. Força, Mr. Bennett, haverá de conseguir. Como se diz em Portugal, a verdade é como o azeite, vem sempre ao cimo da água.

  20. The cadaver dogs and DNA evidence - the McCann team have tried so hard to discredit - should be evidence good enough that Madeleine must be dead for an inquest to be held even without a body. When is the case going to be reopened?

  21. I commend Ms. Butler and Mr. Bennett’s courage. They must be aware that the odds are stacked against their endeavour to bring justice to the child. We all know what measures were taken to protect the couple, the one that really shocked me was the mock up hearing in which justice Hogg declared the couple’s innocence. I’m surprised they were able to get their book published; of course I’m sure the English media has kept everything hush-hush.
    I don’t know how effective an enquiry in Portugal would be, given that the protagonists in this sad story will never set foot in Portugal again. Mr. Bennett perhaps you and Ms. Butler should wait for Mr. Brown’s demise and then attempt to launch an enquiry in England.

  22. guerra, thank you for your comments. I agree fully that the odds are stacked against our endeavours and anyone else (e.g. Goncalo Amaral) actively trying to find out the truth about why Madeleine 'disappeared'. All we can do is make the demands, e.g. for an inquest.

    Someone recently gave us this thought:

    "The truth is eternal. A lie only lasts until the truth becomes known".

    A profound saying IMO


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