Maddie Case still without credible leads
Correio da Manhã reveals the latest developments on the Maddie Case
by Tânia Laranjo
A few days before the fifth anniversary since Maddie disappeared in Praia da Luz, Algarve, there are no new leads that could enable the reopening of the investigation. The Judiciary Police from Oporto has spent more than one year re-reading the whole process, but nothing was found that could help clarify the disappearance of the English girl.
The "195 leads" announced before yesterday by the British authorities whilst they are reviewing the archived process were not yet officially revealed to the Judiciary Police, as CM found out, because they only are avenues of investigation and not specific facts that may point to the child's whereabouts.
"This is just folklore [nonsense], in the field of the sightings, of the suspicions of mediums and psychics. The abduction thesis is just an opinion from someone who is free to say whatever he wants. And we should not forget that London's police [MET] has to justify the money spent on this investigation. They must give something to the public opinion", said Gonçalo Amaral, the former Judiciary Police inspector that coordinated the case, reaffirming that the investigation at the time followed all the rules.
"Maddie was last seen at 17:30 on May 3, 2007. At that time everything that could be done, was done and we were able to demonstrate that it was materially impossible for the child to have been abducted. Unfortunately we were not able to find her whereabouts".
Relative to the reanalysis of the process in Portugal, Correio da Manhã knows that the Portuguese review is not being done alongside the English review. Although occasionally there might be a cooperation between the two police forces, the objective is to give autonomy to each, so that they do not become contaminated.
In Portugal the reanalysis of the case did not allow to progress more than what was already established during the initial investigation. Nothing indicates that the child is alive.
in Correio da Manhã, 27.04.2012
The English Pro McCann couple media as written by two lusophobic tabloid hacks, another English political interference and an English cop's breakfast video
Maddy hunt stalls: Portuguese cops refuse to reopen case despite 195 new leads
One of the country’s top police chiefs insisted there was no fresh evidence in the five-year-old case to warrant a new probe
by Martin Fricker
THE hunt for Madeleine McCann stalled yesterday as Portuguese cops refuse to reopen the case [only the Public Ministry can make that decision, it cannot be decided by the Judiciary Police]. Parents Kate and Gerry McCann were given renewed hope on Wednesday when British police said they believe Madeleine is still alive.
But those hopes were dashed yesterday when Portuguese authorities ruled out reopening their botched original investigation. One of the country’s top police chiefs insisted there was no fresh evidence in the five-year-old case to warrant a new probe.
And Portugal’s Attorney General said new leads uncovered by Scotland Yard were nothing more than “mere speculation”.
Pedro do Carmo, the deputy head of the criminal police department [National deputy director of the Judiciary Police], said the investigation - which ended in July 2008 - would remain closed.
His comments came just 24 hours after British police reviewing Madeleine’s disappearance said she could still be alive.
Scotland Yard detectives said they had uncovered 195 potential new leads while sifting through 40,000 pieces of information in the case. They urged their Portuguese counterparts to re-open their search for the youngster, who vanished in May 2007. But Mr do Carmo yesterday ruled that out.
He said: “There are no new elements at the moment that would allow for the reopening of the inquiry.” Mr do Carmo said that a team of investigators would continue “to re-examine elements of the inquiry” in collaboration with British police. But he warned that such a practice was normal and did not mean they will be reopening the case.
He also revealed that the Portuguese police had received “no formal request for the reopening of the inquiry” from UK cops.
Portugal’s Attorney General Fernando Jose Pinto Monteiro later backed up Mr do Carmo’s comments. A spokeswoman for his office said: “The case will only be reopened if there are credible and relevant new facts, not mere hypotheses or speculation. “So far we have not received any request for the case to be reopened.
Mr Pinto Monteiro archived the Madeleine investigation in July 2008 and the case cannot be reopened without the permission of his office. The Attorney General’s office supervises investigations by the Judicial Police, the force in charge of the Madeleine case.
Madeleine, who would now be eight-years-old, vanished from her parents’ holiday apartment in Praia da Luz.
Kate and Gerry, from Rothley, Leics, were dining with friends at a nearby Tapas restaurant at the time of her disappearance.
Police this week issued a new age-progression image of the youngster as she would now look as she approaches her ninth birthday. The officer leading the review, Det Chief Insp Andy Redwood, said there were 195 “investigative opportunities”.
But he refused to say what evidence they had uncovered to suggest Madeleine was alive. “Evidence that she is alive stems from the forensic view of the timeline,” he said. “There were opportunities there for Madeleine McCann to have been taken as part of a criminal act.
“We are developing material we believe represents genuinely new information. “We would like the case to be reopened. We are working with the police to get ourselves to that position.”
The review was launched last year after a meeting between former Met commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson and the Home Office. A Met Police spokesman said last night: “Officers conducting the investigative review continue to work closely and collaoratively [sic] with the Portuguese authorities.
“There are significant differences in our legal systems. We recognise the law does not allow them to investigate as the case is currently closed.
“We do still believe, however, that there are matters which need to be considered, and therefore we are currently seeking a more formal way of addressing this.”
He added: “We have received a steady flow of calls following yesterday’s appeal and officers are now working through the information.”
The spokesman said there is no official process allowing Scotland Yard detectives to pursue a case under foreign jurisdiction. He said: “We can’t compel the Portuguese to do anything but we will keep trying and we don’t think this is the end. We will keep lobbying.”
Last night a source close to the McCanns said: “Kate and Gerry agree with what Scotland Yard on Wednesday. They will speak publicly next week.” [Prepare the red carpets...]
in The Daily Mirror, 27.04.2012
Portuguese police say no to new Maddie probe
by Antonella Lazzeri
THE parents of missing Madeleine McCann suffered a huge blow last night when slack Portuguese cops REFUSED to reopen the case.
The decision flies in the face of British evidence that she could be still alive.
Kate and Gerry McCann had been given fresh hope by a Met review of the investigation.
Yesterday a source close to them said: “They were hoping the Portuguese would see sense and agree. But it seems not.
“There is a little girl missing — that is all that should matter. They feel the best hope of finding Madeleine lies in the case being reopened.”
The snub came after Met Commander Simon Foy revealed 195 new leads and called for the Portuguese to reopen the case. He declared: “On the evidence there is a possibility that she is alive.”
But yesterday two top legal chiefs in Portugal incredibly said there was NO reason for it to be looked at again.
Their attorney general Pinto Monteiro scoffed: “The case will only be reopened if there are credible new facts.
“Hypotheses are not enough. There have been a thousand sightings which have turned out to be false.”
And Pedro do Carmo, assistant national director of the justice department, added: “There are no reasons to justify the reopening of the case.”
Madeleine, who would now be nearly nine, vanished from a holiday apartment on May 3, 2007, in Praia da Luz, Portugal.
The year-long Met review was launched after Kate and Gerry penned an open letter to PM David Cameron in The Sun begging him to help them.
At a press conference on Wednesday, Scotland Yard revealed their review had found 195 new leads — and unveiled a new image of how Madeleine would look now.
But there are now fears the leads will never be followed up — although Mr Cameron is believed to still be trying to get the Portuguese government to reopen the case.
A source said: “The truth is that the British police can only make recommendations.”
The Home Office issued a carefully-worded statement after the refusal. It said: “We have asked the Metropolitan Police to review the case and they are working with the Portuguese police.”
The McCanns’ spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: “Kate and Gerry think there is good justification in reopening the case. They remain hopeful.”
by ALAN JOHNSON, Former Home Secretary
I AM not surprised there is some resentment in Portugal. But we have to use all diplomatic channels now — including the Home Secretary ringing her opposite number.
The Portuguese police must put all that behind them and concentrate on one thing, and that is a little English girl who went missing.
I’m sure the Portuguese have the compassion and understanding to put away their enmities so we can pursue these leads together.
in Murdoch's The Sun, 27.04.2012
Transcript by Anthony Bennett at Jill Havern's Forum
Dan Lobb: Where are we at now with regards to…the dialogue you have with the Portu…Portuguese authorities - and how happy are you with the response you’ve got from, er, the request you have made?
Andy Redwood: OK, well I am meeting now on a very regular basis - at least once a month - with a Portuguese counterpart in Porto - north-west Portugal – um, she leads a review team of officers who are committed, and dedicated to working with us, collaboratively, um, to establish what has happened to Madeleine McCann.
Dan Lobb: Will they reopen the case?
Redwood: Well the situation at the moment is…is…is…is quite simple: we in the UK in terms of our relationship with Portugal, operate two completely different legal systems. And we acknowledge and respect that, and indeed, in terms of how the Portuguese operate is...is…it’s the judicial authority that actually makes the decision around any re-opening.
Dan Lobb: But you, you still, you still have that hope, do you…
Dan Lobb: …do you, and that’s what you’re pushing for?
Redwood: Yes, absolutely…100%, the dialogue I have with my colleague in Portugal is very positive, and they do want to reopen in due course.
Kate Garraway: We’ve heard mention of these 195 ‘investigative opportunities’.
Kate Garraway: What does that - what does that mean, does that mean - leads? - chances? - of finding Madeleine?
Redwood: Yes, well our responsibility, we have a unique position, if you like, in terms of where are at present. We are drawing together three key strands, never done before - UK, Portuguese and private investigation material all into one place er in our incident room at Belgravia - and it is through that process that we are identifying investigative opportunities in our careful, systematic trawl through the material - er, so those 195 have come from our review of the history…
Kate Garraway: So those…that means they are basically…being tied together? – links and…
Kate Garraway: Basically tying together - links.
Redwood: Yes. This history of the case, where we’ve obviously started, is one part of the review, and that is where those 195 opportunities come from…across a broad range of issues...but it’s just simply that we’re unable to answer them…
Kate Garraway: Mmm...
Redwood: …in the United Kingdom, which is where our really important dialogue with the Portuguese police takes place.
Dan Lobb: Do you believe she is still alive?
Redwood: Yes, I do.
Dan Lobb: Why?
Redwood: I believe she’s still alive because, at the beginning of this case…it’s a huge privilege for us at the Metropolitan Police to be part of this investigation…er, investigation review. Is that we came with a completely open mind.
We were untouched by anything that’s gone before, and, as part of that, two key elements of it is to go: 1 Madeleine is alive and the other is, sadly she’s not...and in relation to her being alive, yes, there is a real possibility that she’s alive.
Kate Garraway: So what are the things that make you think that…because I think you know we’re all clinging to the hope, aren’t we?
Dan Lobb: Yeah. I mean it’s kind of hard evidence but there is still going to be hope - as long as she’s not found dead
Redwood: Yes, I mean, you know, we have conducted a forensic analysis of the timeline, and there is clearly opportunity there - for Madeleine McCann to have been removed from that apartment alive - and it is our belief, as experienced investigators - on the evidence, that, um that you know, that that, that is as a criminal act - and that has been, you know, undertaken by by a stranger, and so from that - she’s… and there are other cases around the world, as you know where, many years later, people have been taken and been found alive.
Dan Lobb: Very quickly, let’s take, take another - another look at that picture that you guys have released - the age-progression picture, and in, in what…what help this could possibly do to the investigation?
Redwood: It’s a critically important stage for us, if you look at the image, you will see that it has great resemblance to a school photograph, this is the sort of image that every parent proudly presents – on their, on their dining room um you know, you know, your dining room table This image has been carefully prepared by a United Kingdom forensic specialist in human identification and…and art and - close collaboration with Mr and Mrs McCann who agree that this is a close - close resemblance to their, to their daughter - and my appeal to the public today is clear - look at the image carefully please -
Dan Lobb: OK
Redwood: …you if you know where Madeleine McCann is, then please call us - or if you know, or if you have information about what has happened to her, again, please call us
ITV's Daybreak (morning talk show) with DCI Andy Redwood, broadcast April 27, 2012