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

McCann Couple: Parents defy the police to investigate lead

Maddie's family want excavations

Rogério Alves, the McCanns lawyer, says the police must take a position on the lead provided by the businessman that guarantees that the cadaver is in Murat's garden

by Ana Luísa Nascimento

The McCann family lawyer defends that the authorities should investigate the lead provided by a South African businessman that guarantees that Maddie, who disappeared in 2007, is buried in the garden of Briton Robert Murat, in the Algarve.

“The family has no technical means to judge if this is true, it does not investigate. What the family expects is for the police to take a position on this matter, to verify the site”, said Rogério Alves to CM, following the private investigation by Stephen Birch, who has already informed the Judiciary Police of the steps taken in Murat's garden with a georadar machine, through which he claims to have detected changes in the subsoil.

Rogério Alves clarifies that the family does not know the South African businessman who made claims that a cadaver is buried in that place, 60 centimetres bellow ground, and adds: “If a person makes a statement as peremptory as that, then the family expects for the police to verify and confirm or deny that claim. If they don't do it, they should explain why.”

“To dissipate doubts there is no alternative”

António Teixeira, former chief inspector of the Judiciary Police Homicide Unit, defends that the Attorney General's Office should reopen the investigation to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. In his view, excavations in Robert Murat's garden should be made, following the private investigation of the South African businessman Stephen Birch. “To dissipate all doubts, there is no better alternative than to carry out the excavation”, said the former chief inspector of the Judiciary Police.


May 3, 2007
Madeleine, 3 years-old, disappeared on the night of the 3rd of May of 2007 from the Ocean Club, in Praia da Luz, Lagos.

Parents Arguidos
After Robert Murat, Madeleine's parents were constituted as arguidos, in September 2007, suspected of concealment of a cadaver.

Archived Process
The investigation was archived in July 2008, but the process might be reopened by initiative of the Attorney General's Office.

in Correio da Manhã, July 7, 2012, paper edition, page 10

A different version for the UK

«(...) Kate and Gerry McCann believe she is still alive and would not comment on Mr Birch's claims.»
in Police Probe Madeleine 'Grave' Theory, by Martin Brunt, Sky News [Murdoch's News International], July 6, 2012

«(...) The youngster’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann yesterday refused to comment on the latest claims about their daughter(...)

A source close to the McCanns, of Rothley, Leics, said: It appears this so-called investigator used scanning equipment during a visit to the resort in June.

Kate and Gerry do not believe there is anything credible in what he is saying. It seems to be complete lies. If there was any truth in it, police would be out there digging up the area looking for possible remains.»
in Madeleine McCann Grave Yards from her hols flat, by Jerry Lawton, Daily Star, July 7, 2012


A “report” made in situ, that is in the Algarve, by a former Met detective at the request of Rupert Murdoch's tabloid, The Sun, published last April resurfaced, this time in its entirety on Sky News, also owned by Rupert Murdoch, coincidentally just five days after the South African businessman, Stephen Birch gave an exclusive video interview to the Portuguese Expresso newspaper, more exactly on June 28, the same day Birch left Portugal. Incidentally, the Expresso newspaper media lawyer is Isabel Duarte, the McCann couple libel lawyer.

The report which is nothing more than an opinion, and a biased one in my view, stated that “Madeleine may still be alive” and that she is “likely” with a “childless couple” in “Madeira, even Brazil” or somewhere where Portuguese is spoken, discarding crucial witnesses statements, dismissing the two former arguidos odd actions and attitudes as something totally “irrelevant”, disregarding the time-lines in an apparent attempt to fit the only and already discredited sighting of a non-reliable witness - the sole evidence of the abduction theory maintained by the McCann couple, as well as the usual bashing of the inept Portuguese police, and surprise, of NPIA's Top Criminal Profiler Lee Rainbow, author of one of the most damning reports to appear in the Maddie McCann process, as having done a “misguided analysis”. I could go on... but JB at his blog has already covered this issue extensively.

The timing of the resurfaced report is interesting, to say the least. If it was re-published to bury the soon to appear Birch's news of Maddie's alleged grave as a counter spin or for another not so obvious reason, is something that we will understand in a very near future.


  1. Bom dia!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Maddie, de novo http://www.cmjornal.xl.pt/detalhe/noticias/opiniao/f-moita-flores/maddie-de-novo
    Opinião de FMF.


  2. Obrigada Maria, uma lufada de ar fresco e de sanidade, finalmente. um beijinho e excelente fim de semana

  3. eh,eh. Realmente aos fins de semana há sempre muita animação McCanniana . Os de Uk estão a ser muito bonzinhos para os pasquins de Pt. Uk está ajudar Pt na crise e assim os " jornalistas" não vão para o desemprego.

    No meu está também em (horrível googlenglish......... )


  4. More team McCann games???

    McCanns Portuguese lawyer Rogerio Alves, "If a person makes a statement as peremptory as that, then the family expects for the police to verify and confirm or deny that claim. If they don't do it, they should explain why.”

    If the McCanns believe this claim deserves to be treated as new evidence and investigated by the PJ, why has their 'source' (PR spokesman) rubbished the story as 'lies' in the UK media. 'The family expects the police to verify and confirm or deny that claim' - really? Well surely now is the time for the McCanns to act. Why don't they formally request the case be reopened as is their legal right? If they don't do it, they should explain why - right?

    Alves clarifies that the McCann family does not know the South African business man - ah, but maybe they know a man who does.

  5. All of this stinks of red herring to me. So what is it they don't want our attention attracted to?

  6. Why would the McCanns know this man Birch? It seems to me everybody thinks this is some huge conspiracy theory. Why is this? Could it just be Madeleine McCann was abducted on the evening of 3 May 2007 and has not been seen since? Could this not be a case of abduction to order for a family situation and that she is alive still and the search for her should continue?

    As there is no proof at all that this child has come to any physical harm, then surely this is the way to looking? Who did it? Where is she?

    Birch has done an immense amount of harm trespassing in the Murat garden, bot to the Murat's and the McCanns. The garden was searched thoroughly by 2 police forces around the time so what is being implied here? Madeleine was kept somewhere until after those searches? Where and by whom exactly? Ridiculous is what I think of these fables.

    Could it be that the piece of driveway has been extended recently for good reason, like parking an extra car? Whatever, if it has been added then the subsoil will have been disturbed in order for rubble and sand to be placed ready for the cement to be laid.

    I hope the police in Portugal will now act upon this if only to put this to rest and I hope when it is found to be nothing, that those lawyers Birch saw fit to engage before his trip, will be needed and that he will find himself in deep, deep water for what he has done.

  7. Such questionable links wouldn`t you say?

    Stephen Birch - Expresso Newspaper
    Expresso Newspaper - Isobel Duarte
    Isobel Duarte - McCanns

  8. I really can't see the connection between this story and the McCanns lawyer Duarte wether she has some connection to this Birch Guy I dont know, but this story is NOT HELPING the McCanns in anyway shape or form....all this does is cement in peoples heads that Maddy is dead......If they wanted to detract attention away or on to Murat again, imo they could find a more believable way then this.

  9. @6
    'Could this not be a case of abduction to order for a family situation and that she is alive still and the search for her should continue?'

    No, it couldn't. That is probably the most implausible theory of all. Why take an articulate four year old who can kick up a racket and whom they'd have to brainwash for months into accepting her new life and besides, they had a choice of two year old twins instead. What would the rich but desperate, childless family do with her once they got her home? Their new found family wouldn't even have the semblance of a normal existance. They'd be forever terrified, looking over their shoulder, keeping the child hidden from everyone including extended family, friends, colleagues and neighbours in case someone noticed her eye defect. No outings, no parties or sleepovers, no travel, no education and no medical care. It would be far more sensible for such a couple to go down the route of legal (or even illegal) adoption, at home or abroad, and if they could afford to hire a gang to kidnap a child why not just choose the expensive but much simpler, safer option of surrogacy.

  10. No. 5 I read on another forum a couple of weeks ago that the McCanns fund is being investigated by tax inspectors. Of course, if true, they certainly wouldn't want that published in the press.

  11. Sorry, slightly off topic, but why on the jillhavern forum is Amaral quoted as: "The British priest staged everything"? I can find nothing to enlarge on this statement, but maybe I am not good at looking - anyone else know?

  12. No 6 - Why would the McCanns know this man Birch? It seems to me everybody thinks this is some huge conspiracy theory. Why is this?

    Whenever anyone questions the latest ludicrous developments in this unbelievable case, they are immediately labelled as conspiracy theorists. Why is this?

  13. Number 12. Rupert Murdoch owns the Argus Newspaper, (a large daily circulation paper), in Cape Town. Stephen Birch resides in Cape Town.

  14. Philomena McCann knew exactly this from Martin Van Wyk as did the uncle of Robert Murat, as did Dr Amaral. Stephen Brice took over from Martin van Wyk and it was well known of the theory of Martin van Wyk. For over two years this has been suggested and now the garden has been entered. I doubt Stephen Birch cares of a trespass charge, but he cannot be done for neglect of minors. He just took over as I know from Birch's emails to me via Martin, and via his phone to do what he could because he had the money. Good for him, at least someone is looking for the missing four year old.

  15. Excellent article Joana. The best I have read on this subject so far.

  16. if the mccanns thought this was true they would be on to the pj and get this case re-opened,its all bull and bluster from them.
    slowly slowly catchee monkey.

  17. “The family has no technical means to judge if this is true, it does not investigate"

    Spot on Rogerio, the family doesn't investigate, we have known this for 5 years now!

    They have no technical means?

    Come, come, now, I am sure the Madeleine Fund can afford some excavation equipment so as to leave 'no stone unturned in Murats garden?' A couple of matching georadars for Kate and Gerry and a set of 'His and Hers' garden spades and Bob's your uncle!

    Or perhaps Gerry might prefer to ask the dogs?


  18. #11,
    But WHICH british priest...? Hubbard, who arrived in Luz soon after the 3rd May, or his predecessor, the one that was still in duty as the anglican priest for the british expat community when the disappearance occurred...? The one that is never or seldom mentioned...?

  19. @19, i am not sure. There is some past McCann connection with the Hubbards, I think, but it seems the keys to the church were given by the predecessor, if I read correctly. The Hubbards have a daughter, who refused to act as Madeleine in the McCann "reconstruction" video. I am confused as to who is Ellie, Madeleine, or this child...

  20. Alves, ABBC DLA Piper, Birch


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