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

“It took some courage to defend the McCanns”

This is an excerpt of an extensive interview with Dr Rogério Alves, published in Diário de Notícias today.

Do you still work for the McCann couple, in the famous Maddie case?

As you know, the process was archived. Taking into account the specifics of this case, and because it’s about a father and a mother who lost their daughter, which is one of the greatest tragedies that can happen to human beings, I ended up with come connection to them. Naturally, at the moment, there is no work in terms of the process, the process is closed. Just like with my other clients, I keep a good relationship of cordiality, in some cases there is more friendship, in others less. This process, also due to its intense media exposure, the very peculiar aspects that it had, made me keep contact with a father and a mother, who just happen to be called Gerry and Kate, who remain under the tension and the despair that you can imagine, and keeping a cool head as much as possible, they continue to do everything that they can to find their daughter, and with the hope – that nobody can deny them and that nobody can try to take away from them – to find her alive and in good health, while naturally, in other moments they will think about how much she suffers. Which is effectively an atrocious thought and which all of us will consider as such, if we think about it for five or ten seconds beyond the noise that was made over this case, and the enormous amount of silly things that have been said about it.

What did this case mean, in your professional life?

It meant a challenge. Because it was necessary to incorporate some courage, here. And it was the living demonstration that everyone has a right to be defended, please note: we had a father and a mother here, with whom all of us felt solidarity, because they suffered something horrible, they lost a daughter, and worse, they didn’t even know what happened to her. Suddenly, they became arguidos, in a gesture that the Polícia Judiciária itself, through its official voice, considered as hasty. They obviously became defendants, martyrs, public enemies, crooks, and then they needed to be defended. Obviously I didn’t need that defence for my career, for my professional life.

But you started to have more clients after the Maddie case?

No, my life has gone on in a continuum, and all of that is legends, fables that are told. I was, and I am, a lawyer to many famous people, but I’m very discreet. Now what I pondered was the need to defend against an unfair accusation, unfounded, as the Public Ministry and the Polícia Judiciária ended up considering, to defend a couple that had already suffered an unmatched disgrace in their life and was about to be added another, that was to be accused – thankfully they were not – of nobody knows what exactly, but the covering up of the death or something similar.

Lawyers don’t always exist to make things easier and more linear.

Not always, but almost always! Note, we make a living out of solving problems, not delaying decisions. I’m very sorry that this legend remains above the evidence of history. Once more, there are cases where procedural manoeuvring may pay off, there are cases! But why does nobody ever think about a lawyer who takes up the case, for example, of 50 creditors who desperately wait…

But there’s a lawyer on the other side, as well.

Not always! If you look at executive action in Portugal, which is the coercive payment of debts through State mechanisms, in the majority of cases there is no lawyer on the opposite side, there’s a totally inoperative machine that executes the forceful payment! How do we allow, for example, the commerce courts to hold processes that are impossible to manage, bankruptcies that involve hundreds of entities – now they are insolvencies -, workers, firms, creditors, whenever someone files a request, four boxes have to be rummaged through, it renders the whole thing impracticable! Our procedural laws are the great deadly sin of our judiciary system. I’ve been saying this for years, but we collide with a major obstacle: it has nothing to do with the lawyers’ or the magistrates’ profile, but with one of its core condiments, which is our sinister conservativeness. We’re very routinely, very conservative and very much afraid of change.

source: Diário de Notícias, 17.05.2009


  1. Eu simplesmente tenho uma santa birra deste homem.
    Prefiro o Dr. Carlos.

    Guerra, sabes tu o que significa "ter birra de"?

  2. Off-topic, slightly. Apologies.

    Joana and friends

    Do you take this Amaral/McCadaver spat seriously? Surely you must be aware of the need to increase the flow of funds into Madeleine McCann Productions, Inc? Mr Amaral, together with the McCadavers, is a major stockholder in this enterprise, and no publicity is bad publicity.

    Disney International are in the final stages of negotiation with Madeleine McCann Productions, Inc. to transform PDL into a gigantic theme park, and certain details of this well-advanced project have been leaked, which I am able to share with you:

    - the new Amaral International Airport, to be built a few miles inland, will feature its flight-paths marked out with illuminated Cuddlecats.

    - over at the Kennel Club, the little ones will be able to make friends with Eddie and Keela look-a-likes, while their parents relax in the refurbished TapasBar. The more sporty of these, the parents, can then retire to nearby Payne’s Pavilion, for finger-sucking and nipple twirling to their hearts’ content.

    - at the Bransondrome, intrepid adventurers will be able to take trips to Morocco, Tangier and Casablanca in a one-engine string and canvas bi-plane, to continue the search for Maddie. Those that survive the excursion will be offered discounted tickets on the Virgin Galactica.- in the House of Horrors, screeching, gibbering, slobbering spotty actors kitted out as predators will entertain the little ones. Those insufficiently terrified will be offered a one-to-one interview with the Gerry and Kate Vampires. - at the new Waxworks, visitors can admire representations of the entire Tapas9 crew and their associates, including Tawdry Tanner, Bozo Brian, Gobby Gordon and Creepy Clarrie, and various assorted serving and retired British cops with their hands in the till.

    - the Kate & Gerry Coconut-Shy is sure to be a favourite attraction.

    - pros and antis can battle it out in Paintball competitions organised by the local Rotary Club, while the more intensely committed can come to conclusions in the Mad Max Maddie Thunderdome. - The Vatican will be well represented, with a stall selling row upon row of gaudy Madeleine icons, made in China, and an array of fake relics, such as plastic toe-nail clippings, locks of blonde polyester hair and glass eyeballs with authentic defect.

    - in the Madeleine Grotto, visitors will be met with gallery after gallery of floor to ceiling Madeleine pictures, as she was, as she is now, as she will be as a teenager, as a young woman, middle-aged, etc. The final gallery will feature digital-enhancement of Madeleine as she may look at age ninety, should the search for her still then be going on.

    The whole thing will go down a treat and ensure the prosperity of PDL and its residents for decades, if not generations to come.

  3. "Suddenly, they became arguidos, in a gesture that the Polícia Judiciária itself, through its official voice, considered as hasty."

    Not according to Mr. Amaral...he says in his book that mr. Alípio Ribeiro participated and agreed fully on the decision to make the McCanns "arguidos"! When he aproved that decision it sure seems that he did not consider it "hasty", but very appropiate and necessary in view of the work of the dogs and the forensic findings inside the apartment and hired car!
    What made him subsquently change his mind and "stabb the knife" on the backs of his subordinates?

    And, if Mr. Alves is was/is so sure of the innocence of his former(?)clients and of the injustice commited upon them by the PJ, why did he advise them against taking action against Mr. Amaral, because of the "danger" of re-opening the process, which would not be in his clients best interest?...Innocent people have nothing to fear from a police investigation!

  4. Rogério Alves a tentar agora sair airosamente desta triste história como o herói corajoso que defendeu os pobres coitados que o mundo cruel e injusto acusava. Que altruísta da sua parte, Sr Rogério Alves.

  5. O Gonçalo Amaral é que tem coragem, espinha dorsal para participar corpo a corpo nesta dança maquievélica cheia de sombras projectadas e sem fim à vista. Desejo que a PJ se torne uma instituição independente do poder político para que cada um seja bom naquilo que faz e que erros como este não possam repetir-se. Do Dr. Rogério Alves esperava mais, desejava mesmo que ele tivesse recusado este caso porque o admirava mas a vaidade é uma fraqueza dos diabos. Se tivesse tido a superioridade de não aceitar o caso tinha ficado muito melhor na fotografia.

  6. How has Dr Alves the courage to present himself as the defender of the widow and the orphan ? He advised Kate to refuse answering the 40 famous questions, probably to avoid any risk of discrepancy with the answers Gerry would make later. Doing so he deliberately obstructed the course of the inquest, showing that his interest was to protect his clients from justice and not to help justice for a child he considered obviously dead.

  7. Et Voila... the clown number 4 seems he is out of the arena. We know why... he is looking forward for a new job: trying to get the President chair of Sporting football Club in Lisbon. I hope, he will never get it. Sporting supporters will never forget how he sold portugal reputation when he accepted to be Mccann's lowyer even without resigning from his previous position (Bastonario da Ordem dos Advogados). He dont deserve respect from any portuguese citizen. He have the same feelings as the Mccann's: MONEY, MONEY always MORE MONEY AND LOTS OF POPULARITY IF POSSIBLE. IS A CROC... Sorry, I dont want to insult crocs.

  8. It is offensive to me to hear Dr Rogério Alves say that it took courage on his part to represent the McCanns. In my mind he is a coward who put his career ahead of his country. I'm sure he got paid quite handsomely with money from a fund that was ostensibly set up to find a child. Dealing with people that are well connected in British society will also open up new opportunities for him in the future. Mr. Alves speaks of the intense media pressure and the peculiar aspects of this case but he of course forgets to mention that the intense media pressure and the peculiar aspects were all created by his clients. When facts about the case are mentioned that are not complimentary to the McCanns he reverts to calling the facts pure fiction and yet pure fiction is exactly what his clients are constantly creating and disseminating.

    Para mim este homem está fazer um bom papel de advogado mas como homem ele é um traste.

    To the first anonymous:
    I don't want to turn this blog into the teach Guerra Portuguese blog. In the dictionary I have, "birra" is translated as meaning obstinate, stubborn. In the sense that it's used in "ter birra de alguém" probably means that you detest someone.

  9. O Dr. Rogerio Alves teve os seus momentos de fama que tanto ambicionava. Deus entrevistas, esteve num debate na televisão, apareceu nos ecrans...agora, tem que sair sem dar muito nas vistas pois ja percebeu que ha muita gente contra esta farsa dos McCann.


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