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

Lost in Translation: Confessions and lies

 by Jennifer Leighfield, Editorial Manager

I HAVE just finished reading the book by Gonçalo Amaral, the former chief of Portugal’s Judicial Police, who was taken off the McCann case. Some time back it was reported that the McCann family had sued Amaral and the publisher. Both responded they would be more than happy to face them in court.

The book, which has not yet been officially translated into English, is well-written, and in less than 200 pages, describes the investigation, without revealing anything that could jeopardize the case. Although there isn’t much that hasn’t been reported in the press, it is interesting to hear it directly from someone so deeply involved. His suspicions, which he presents as nothing more than that, of the McCann’s involvement in their daughter’s disappearance, are not surprising when we read of the evidence he is faced with, and there must be so much more he cannot speak of.

But what is his background? Amaral studied criminology, psychology, psychiatry, sociology and law, but what interests him most, he claims, is studying people. He is a devout Catholic, and has three daughters; the youngest Maddie’s age. While in charge of the investigation, he paid little attention to criticism against him, and went about his job with the professionalism he has been praised for since he joined the police force in the 1980s. His main preoccupation was the fact that requests for help from the British police were being either ignored or intercepted at a very high level, so that little information about the McCanns or their friends was available to the Portuguese.

During his career, it seems cases involving little girls have surrounded him, so much so that there have been rumours that he belongs to a supposed group of police who kidnap children to sell them to paedophile networks for extra income. From the outset, Amaral was wary of the McCanns, especially as he is convinced that when a family creates a media circus around the disappearance of a child, they usually know more than they let on. As he told his men, in 90 per cent of disappearances the parents are involved, in most of the remaining cases, relatives and close friends, and in a very small number, total strangers. He was worried. If Maddie had been taken, her parents had signed her death sentence.

Publishing her photo would mean that if a network of paedophiles did have her, they would not risk trying to sell her and would probably get rid of her. He has had experience in this type of case. On September 12, 2004, a nine-year-old girl named Joana Cipriano was reported missing from a small village in Portugal and the whole of Portugal went to look for her. Amaral was in charge of the case, and concluded in a report that Joana had caught her mother and uncle having sex and, afraid she would tell, they killed her, cut her body in pieces and hid it.

Her remains were never found, but her mother and uncle were sentenced to 20 years in prison. However, Amaral was in the press then, accused by Joana’s mother of beating a confession out of her. After she was sentenced, she failed to identify her alleged attackers and withdrew the complaint. Amaral believes that if Maddie really is dead, her body will not be found either. When asked if he thought Kate McCann was responsible for her death, he responded, “I don’t know if she’s guilty or innocent, but I wouldn’t like to have her as my mother.”

source: Euro Weekly News

Critic on the above article

The article written by Jennifer Leighfield at first glance seems to flatter Gonçalo Amaral, however it has so many incorrect and unsubstantiated rumours that one has to wonder where did the journalist got her informations? As matter of fact one has even to question if the author of this article intends to subliminally produce the idea that Gonçalo Amaral is somewhat connected to a paedophile ring of corrupted cops: "(...)so much so that there have been rumours that he belongs to a supposed group of police who kidnap children to sell them to paedophile networks for extra income", a serious allegation for a professional journalist to make since is based on malicious gossip, as the author herself states in the 3 arguidos forum "I am not spreading rumours about Amaral, but there are many websites (...) who speak of a group of officers belonging to the Portuguese police who actually collaborate with paedophile groups and 'help' the girls to disappear".

From here on we understand that Jennifer decided to use a bit of a creative license to write the article.

Jennifer writes for example, "During his career, it seems cases involving little girls have surrounded him" - as far as we know Gonçalo Amaral was the Judiciary Police Coordinator of two cases of missing children: the Joana Cipriano Case and the Madeleine McCann case; in his career Gonçalo Amaral has dealt mainly with drug related crimes, homicides, and other crimes who belong specifically to the sphere of expertise of the Judiciary Police.

While reading the rest of the article it was uncanny the similitudes we could find with an article written by Aníbal Malvar, a journalist from the Spanish El Mundo Newspaper who in 28 April 2008 was debunked and exposed in this blog as a plagiarizer, who tried to pass off excerpts of a fictional book as a real interview he had made to some Judiciary Police officers, including a "creative statement" given by Gonçalo Amaral - this was followed in the next days by some Portuguese and British media, it even got a mention by Arcadi Espada, El Mundo journalist, University professor of Journalism, and blogger at El Mundo Por Dentro, a blog which criticizes the El Mundo newspaper. Paulo Santos, the lawyer who represented Gonçalo Amaral at the time said ''Those statements are a complete lie. Gonçalo Amaral never told the journalist anything. They seem to be citations that were collected from the book about Maddie, which was written by former PJ inspector Paulo Cristóvão".

An example of the evident pasting by Jennifer is this sentence "I don’t know if she’s guilty or innocent, but I wouldn’t like to have her as my mother" attributed to Gonçalo Amaral [in the original article by Anibal in Spanish "Yo no sé si es culpable o inocente, pero no me gustaría que fuera mi madre"] which was later on refuted as being a complete fabrication by the Spanish journalist.

So, now that we know where Jennifer pasted her article from and what her sources are it's time to consider this Portuguese proverb - Not everything that glitters is gold!


  1. I Pray to our Lady Of Fatima mother of the truth to protect Mr Amerel and his family every day, and I beg everyone to do the same please, Its no contest really with faith he can do it.

    Joana please tell him he is constanly in my thoughts and prayers he is not alone in this he has many people behind him.

  2. I distinctly remember reading Gonçalo Amaral denying that he said what's been attributed to him in the final paragraph of this shoddily researched article by Jenni Leighfield.

    I'd like to add that even before I read his denial, I very much doubted he'd made such an emotive and subjective remark about Kate McCann. From what I've seen of Gonçalo Amaral, sniping spiteful remarks isn't the way he operates. Would that his attitude was a two-way street where the McCanns are concerned! Despite considerable provocation from the couple (usually via their spokesperson/family friend but sometimes directly, in interviews) I believe Dr Amaral has been remarkably restrained and charitable in the compassion he has showm Kate & Gerry McCann.

    If Ms Leighfield is considering a follow-up article, it would be good if, at the very least, she takes the time to read the justice process that has recently been republished on this blog because she seems to be woefully uninformed concerning the Cipriano case.

    Also, resisting the temptation to repeat gossip and innuendo - as she's failed to do in this article - would be a good approach next time, if there is one!

  3. http://www.euroweeklynews.com/2009070259741/news/costa-del-sol/twenty-two-years-on-and-still-missing.html

    Another Jennifer Leighfield article.....David Guerrero missing now more than 20 years....

    Apart from this article hard to find much else on Jennifer.


  4. I fear what the Bastards published could not be true.Maybe the Bastards was badly informed.
    But the blog used Justice Hogg's name, it would not be nice for that judge if her name was used connected to untruths.
    If somebody started such a process, how come we have heard about it?

  5. "During his career, it seems cases involving little girls have surrounded him, so much so that there have been rumours that he belongs to a supposed group of police who kidnap children to sell them to paedophile networks for extra income"

    Really makes you wonder doesn't it when you consider what happened to Joana too?

  6. "During his career, it seems cases involving little girls have surrounded him (...)"

    Quoting Astro on 3As:

    "Good grief. 3 (!) cases in 28 years of service."

  7. A media circus will not change a LIE into a TRUTH. The TRUTH will will. We are with you, Dr Amaral.

  8. No, it doesn't anon.Joana was murdered by her uncle and her mother.This is a fact.It wasn't Amaral who convicted her.The court did.You mccann's supporters need to get a backbone and stop using and distorting the Joana Cipriano case to make amaral loose his credibility.You are disrespecting a child's name and memory.She does not deserve this!You have been abusing her as much as her mother, her uncle and her stepfather did.

  9. Poor Jennifer,

    she has to use slenders to achieve some hostility against Portugal and Amaral.
    This shows a very low intellectual contents, low psychological and philosophical capacity.

    It is not even worthwhile to analyse what she wrote.
    It is worthwhile to get conclusions out of this article:
    Those are the kind of supporters the McCanns have to count with now,and they started with Brown and the Pope!
    It is much worse than Jane Tanner's statements.
    If you are born in an certain nest, you can try flying high but you fall back in the place you came from.
    That is happening to the McCanns now. They are depending on second, third class journalists.
    Where is Brown and where is the Pope now?
    By now, everybody knows Madeleine is dead and her body was concealed.
    Everybody knows David Payne is Gerry's best friend.
    And the Amaral's documentary can be watched on youyube.

  10. No, it doesn't anon.Joana was murdered by her uncle and her mother.This is a fact.It wasn't "Amaral who convicted her.The court did.You mccann's supporters need to get a backbone and stop using and distorting the Joana Cipriano case to make amaral loose his credibility.You are disrespecting a child's name and memory.She does not deserve this!You have been abusing her as much as her mother, her uncle and her stepfather did."

    So Mr Amaral didn't get a suspended sentence for covering up beatings? I must have imagined that then! Just like I imagined some of his colleagues got off with a crime too. I'm not distorting anything, but I think you are.

  11. Anon, when I posted the article from the Legal Bastatrds, I stated I did not know if this information was true. Nor do I know where Dr.Suusi found this info. I have done a search and cannot find this news anywhere else. So for the moment we will leave it at that. I have not posted this anywhere else.
    Therefore am not spreading rumours.
    Madeleine however was made a Ward of Court for a reason...are the twins also A ward of the Court?



  12. Ironside, I have no doubts about your honesty.
    I know you do everything to help Madeleine and to inform us.
    I saw the article on the Bastards and I know you are not spreading rumours around.

  13. Ma Chère Joana Morais, Vous ne faites guère mieux que cette journaliste, hormis d'imposer une réalité suggestive et non objective. Que vous défendiez la cause Amaral est votre droit le plus absolu mais en qualité de journaliste professionnelle ne devriez vous pas à votre tour cessez les commentaires subliminaux visant à influencer vos lecteurs et l'opinion publique ? Au fond quelles preuves donnez vous qui puissent nous garantir la qualité et le sérieux de vos sources d'informations ? sont-elles, elles mêmes plus fondées et sérieuses que toutes celles de ce groupes de journalistes portugais surgit sur le web depuis la disparition de Maddie ? Toute cette propagande anti-McCann est finalement une propagande l'anti-Maddie, dont l'objectif a été de l'enterrer vivante, car à ce jour pas plus vous que quiconque ne peut affirmer de la Mort de Maddie, Alors expliquez moi comment pouvez vu continuer à soutenir et à défendre la thèse de Goncalo Amaral considérant le décès de Maddie comme étant un fait réel alors qu'il ne s'agit en réalité que d'un amas de suspicions de la part d'un homme ayant de toutes évidences une manifestation névrotiques à l'égard des "Mères" (Je veux bien croire aux coïncidences mais il est surprenant de découvrir que ses conclusions concernant l'affaire Cipriano ont été exactement les mêmes à propos de Joana, et sa haine vis à vis d'Eléonor Cipriano est étrangement similaire à celle qu'il éprouve envers Kate McCann)

    Cette fois je m'adresse à la Femme et probablement la mère qui est en vous, en l'absence de preuves avérées et incontestables ne convient-il pas de considérer Maddie comme étant vivante et poursuivre les recherches avant de l'enterrer définitivement ?

    Ce que je déplore, c'est qu'au travers de la plupart de vos articles il en ressort clairement une sorte de rivalité journalistique et une volonté de diffuser une information visant à discréditer les McCann, et faire admettre l'idée que Maddie est Morte. Vos objectifs ne me semblent pas très sains hormis ceux d'espérer voir ce dossiers classés et les McCann être jetés en prison comme ce fut le cas pour l'affaire Cipriano. A force d'enfoncer ainsi le clou vous provoquez l'effet inverse de celui escompté, l'opinion publique n'est pas dupe, et fini par se demander si réellement il n'y a pas une implication directe ou indirecte d'un groupe de police corrompue servant à alimenter un réseau pédophile de pays limitrophes. Ce qui justifierait l'acharnement injustifié de la Pj à l'encontre du Couple McCann. Seulement voilà, à l'inverse d'Eléonor Cipriano qui a été volontairement muselée les McCann eux, ne compte pas en rester là, les recherches se poursuivent grâce à leur seule volonté de découvrir la vérité, LA Vraie cette fois et pas une vérité construites sur des allégations infondées. La Guerre est à présent déclarée entre le clan Amaral et les McCann mais rien ne dit pour l'instant qui remportera la victoire, il convient donc de cessez ces rumeurs et ces médisances et d'aller à l'essentiel, pour lheure le temps est aux preuves et non plus aux suspicions, si Goncalo Amaral prétend en savoir plus et bien qu'il le prouve sinon qu'il se taise...

    De plus, permettez moi de douter du sérieux de votre professionnalisme journalistique du fait qu'il en ressort un émotionnel exacerbé lequel a été clairement démontré au cours de votre règlement de compte publique concernant vos turbulences sentimentales et relationnelles avec votre ex-ami journaliste Duarte Levy.

    Il m'apparait tout à fait indécent de la part d'une journaliste professionnelle de mêler ainsi ses lecteurs à sa vie privée pour les influencer une fois de plus et les pousser à prendre position, Sachez donc que vos histoires privées ne nous concernent pas et surtout ne nous intéressent pas.

    Bien à Vous.

  14. Anon, Amaral didn't cover any beatings because those beatings never happened.Why would the police beat someone to make her confess if she had already did that?Besides Leonor Cipriano was never able to identify her supposed aggressors.The men that went to court accused of having beaten her weren't even in the building when , according to Leonor, the beatings occurred.No one was able to prove that the fotos where leonor has the beating marks were real and hadn't been manipulated.Even the judge said leonor lied through the whole trial.You have all the details about these case here in Joana Morais site but you don't care because they don't fit in the story you mccanns supporters need to feed the public, where Amaral is the bad , corrupt policeman who is trying to frame poor kate mccann like he did with poor leonor cipriano.
    Yes you have been distorting Joana Cipriano case like you have been distorting Madeleine case.And it is you who have been imagining a lot of things.But let me give you some advice:stop imagining and start reading the FACTS (you know, those things that your friends mccanns are allergic to) about the two cases.You can read them here, in english.Easy.You can read, can't you?

  15. I hope this information is true but this judge was in favour of the Maccanns. I think. Also did Murat know the Maccanns before Portugal or his he just a patsy.

    Ironside if you are right about this info I will do cartwheels now that would be a sight.

  16. If the only thing left to do is trying to make Gonçalo Amaral look bad by digging up an old case that has nothing whatsoever to do with the investigation of the disappearance of your own daughter, you must be guilty as hell.

  17. The judge was in favor of the Maccanns before Amaral's documentary on youtube.
    And maybe before Tony Bennett's publication.
    We don't know how far she knows the truth.
    And it does not have to be her iniciative, but somebody's else.
    And she has to accept the request.
    Let us wait and see.

  18. Oh, please, people, don't take anything printed by the Euro Weekly News seriously! I have lived in southern Spain for over two decades and refuse to even use that newspaper to line the cat litter tray... I don't even consider it good enough for that!

  19. I don't think the writers on this blog got the information on Mrs Justice Hogg from the euro weekly news.

    you know what I am waiting every day to see the Maccliars in deep deep trouble. I hope God spares me to see it. Thank you Johana for all your hard work you are a thorn in the Maccanns side keep in there.

  20. to anonymous at 31/07/09 12:02

    Naftal c'est dommage que tu es une personne lâche et que tu as décidé d'écrire en tant qu'anonyme sur mon blog. Quoi qu'il en soit comme quelqu'un l'a dit dans ton propre blog : "les chiens aboient la caravane passe"


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