Satellites deviated on the night of the crime
by João Mira Godinho/Paulo Marcelino
The satellite images of Praia da Luz, on the night of the 3rd of May 2007, were one of the PJ’s first concerns when the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann started. Nonetheless, at that time, the North American authorities informed that they did not exist because the satellites had been deviated that night.
‘It was said that the two geostationary satellites [which could have images of Praia da Luz] were rotated towards the Gulf of Cadiz, where a navy exercise was taking place’, Gonçalo Amaral, the former PJ coordinator who led the case investigation, explains to Correio da Manhã.
‘It was a very serious possibility for learning who the abductor was, and more’, says Gonçalo Amaral, adding that the Judiciária wanted the images from the moment of the disappearance, but also ‘those of the hours and even days that preceded it’.
Confronted with the information that the satellites had been deviated, the PJ ended up making no formal request. ‘I have doubts that anyone else tried to access those images’, says the former PJ coordinator, questioning the reason why ‘the McCann couple, that says it is powerful, never tried to obtain the images in order to solve the mysterious disappearance’.
Contacted by Correio da Manhã yesterday, Clarence Mitchell, Kate and Gerry McCann’s spokesperson, justified that ‘the images that existed two years ago were useless’. He states that ‘if there were images, the abductor would have been caught a long time ago’ and denies any recent request from the British authorities to obtain the registers.
‘As far as we know, no diplomatic effort in that sense is being made’, the McCanns’ spokesperson asserted.
The British authorities yesterday denied that they were making any diplomatic contact in order to obtain the North American satellites’ registers.
Murat sues | Robert Murat has taken the witness that pointed him out for sexually devious acts, in the Maddie process, to court.
Investigation | Clarence says that the hired private detectives continue to follow ‘strong leads’.
source: Correio da Manhã, 20.10.2009