Sunday, 10 August 2008

McCann case: the failed reconstruction

In April 2008, Paulo Rebelo gave a detailed response to the McCanns' friends about their arguments and doubts on the subject of the reconstruction of the events of May3rd. He stated that one of the conditions put forward by the group, that of first of all withdrawing Kate and Gerry's arguidos status - was impossible to accomplish, because only the Prosecutor held the legal power to do it, not the PJ.

On the subject of the reconstruction, the main problem for the McCanns' group of friends was clear: if the PJ believed their statements, then the reconstruction wasn't necessary, or the PJ were trying to obtain something strange with this activity.

They wanted to know what the PJ's true intentions were. After several exchanges of emails, going first through Stuart Prior, the Tapas 7 group were not convinced of the usefulness of such a reconstruction.

In the replies that followed, Kate and Gerry's friends placed as a condition, not only the lifting of the McCann couple's arguido status, but also the announcement of a press release by the PJ dispelling the lies published by the Portuguese media, emphasising that there was no suspicion about the seven friends.

As it was impossible to accept or accomplish these conditions, Paulo Rebelo, in an email addressed to Stuart Prior on April 29th, requested that a final decision was taken. Jane and Russel O'Brien were the first to respond, saying yes, but waiting for further advice from their lawyers. Rachel and Matthew sent a similar response, but stressing that they couldn't be in Portugal between May 15th and May 17th.

Diana, Fiona and David Payne also accepted, while waiting for advice from their lawyers. After the PJ's detailed explanations, Jeremy Wilkins was willing to participate, on conditon that the other witnesses were also in Portugal.

The criminal court took the decision to set a new date: 29th and 30th of May 2008. Then Gerald McCann requested a change to this new date, because his lawyer had another meeting planned before the Lisbon court, for May 29th. His request was refused because it was impossible to make a further revision of the date, due to the numbers of people involved. On May 10th, Rachel and Matthew Oldfield sent an email to Stuart Prior, communicating their final decision to him: they would not be in Portugal to participate in the reconstruction. Russel O'Brien, also on May 10th, told the Superintendent that as he had learned that Jeremy Wilkins, the Oldfields and the Payne family had now decided not to go to Portugal, there was now no need for their presence, because the Prosecutor had said that the reconstruction could not take place unless all the witnesses were present.

On May 23rd, all seven of the McCanns' friends sent a formal reply to the Prosecutor's request for a reconstruction, saying that they would not be attending, after advice from their lawyers. The reconstruction was therefroe cancelled by the Judge for the Court of Criminal Investigation, on May 26th 2008.

Paulo Reis and Duarte Levy

The McCann Case: Gerry used two credit cards

According to a briefing note from Inspector Gary Watts of the Leicestershire police to Frances Kennah, Madeleine's father used two MasterCard credit cards.

Frances Kennah is head of the British Central Authority, a Home Office department, responsible for cooperation with foreign police forces.

The note, dated May 23rd, confirms the request from the Portuguese authorities, via international rogatory letter, asking for details of the transactions carried out by Gerry McCann using the two MasterCard credit cards.

The PJ also requested telephone records for a period of six months, starting on April 27th 2007, but the Home Office considered the period of time disproportionate and suggested that they could only provide that information for the days before and after Madeleine's disappearance.

The note from Inspector Gary Watts reveals that the report about the credit card transactions was not completed, after a conversation between Superintendent Stuart Prior and the recipient of the information, Frances Kennah.

A previous report about the financial situation of the McCann couple and their friends, produced by the Economic Crimes Unit of Leicestershire police, had not found any record of credit cards or loans in Kate and Gerry McCann's name.

Duarte Levy & Paulo Reis


Selon une note d’information de l’Inspecteur Gary Watts de la Police du Leicestershire envoyé à France Kennah, le père de Madeleine McCann a utilisé deux cartes de crédit MasterCard.

Frances Kennah est le responsable de l'autorité centrale britannique, un département du Home Office (ministère de l’Intérieur), responsable de la coopération avec les forces de police étrangères.

La note, datée du 23 mai 2008, confirme la demande faite par les autorités portugaises, via une lettre rogatoire internationale, sollicitant tous les détails des transactions effectuées avec les deux cartes de crédit MasterCard utilisées par Gerry McCann.

La Police judiciaire (PJ) a demandé également les registres téléphoniques comprenant une période de six mois, commençant le 1er avril 2007, mais le Home Office à jugé que la période de temps était disproportionnée et a suggéré qu’ils pourraient uniquement fournir cette information pour les jours avant et après la disparition de Madeleine.

La note de l’Inspecteur Gary Watts révèle que le rapport concernant les transactions de ces deux cartes de crédit n'a pas été fini, après une conversation entre le Superintendent Stuart Prior et le destinataire de l'information, Frances Kennah.

Un précédent rapport à propos de la situation financière du couple McCann et de leurs amis, produit par l'Unité de Crimes Économiques de la Police du Leicestershire, n’avait trouvé aucun registre de cartes de crédit ou prêts au nom de Kate et de Gerry McCann.

SOS Madeleine McCann

McCann case: the twins slept through everything!

The Twins' sleeping

The twins' sleeping.

According to Fiona Payne's witness statement, on the night of May 3rd, Kate McCann was simply panicked, afraid for Madeleine, wondering what had happened to her. She described what she saw to the police when she went back to the McCanns' apartment, after having searched around the Ocean Club for five or six minutes with other members of the group of friends, following the alert that Madeleine had disappeared.

When she went back into the children's bedroom, she noticed that Madeleine's bed covers were tidy and that the twins were sound asleep in their cots. While she opened all the bedroom cupboards, the twins continued to sleep and did not budge an inch - which seemed quite strange to her.

According to Fiona Payne's statements to the police, Kate McCann was afraid and the feeling of not being able to do anything was making her angry, screaming and punching the walls with fists and feet - the reason she was covered in bruises the following day.

Asked if the twins had not woken up at all, Fiona said no, adding that Kate kept on going to the twins, placing her hands on them to check if they were still breathing, because she seemed to be much more interested in making sure they were alright.

Fiona Payne remembered that the twins never woke up, in spite of the noise, the cries and the screams, not even when the police came and the lights were switched on - which seemed strange to her at the time.

Duarte Levy & Paulo Reis


7e201d938c995a3be4f60babd9fc3bb0.jpgSelon le témoignage de Fiona Payne, la nuit du 3 mai, Kate McCann était juste paniquée, effrayée pour Madeleine, se demandant ce que lui serait arrivé. Elle a décrit à la police ce qu’elle a vu, quand elle est revenue à l'appartement des McCann, après avoir recherché, pendant cinq ou dix minutes, les environs de l’Océan Club, avec d'autres membres du groupe d'amis, suite à l’alerte de que Madeleine avait disparu.

Elle est rentrée dans la chambre des enfants, elle a remarqué que les draps du lit de Madeleine étaient ordonnés, et les jumeaux étaient parfaitement endormis dans leurs lits de camp. Tandis qu'elle ouvrait toutes les armoires de la chambre, les jumeaux ont continué endormis et n'ont pas bougé d’un millimètre – ce que lui semblait parfaitement étrange !

Selon les déclarations de Fiona Payne à la police, Kate McCann était effrayée et la sensation de ne pas pouvoir faire quoi que ce soit la rendait fâchée, hurlant et donnant des coups de poing et de pied dans les murs — raison pour laquelle elle était couverte de bleus le jour suivant.

Interrogé si les jumeaux ne se sont pas réveillés, à aucun moment, Fiona à confirmé que non rajoutant que Kate a continué à aller vers les jumeaux, continuant à mettre ses mains sur les jumeaux afin de vérifier s’ils continuaient à respirer, car elle semblait beaucoup plus intéressée en vérifier s’ils étaient bien.

Fiona Payne s'est rappelé que les jumeaux ne se sont jamais réveillés, malgré tout le bruit, les cris et les hurlements, pas même quand la police est venue et les lumières ont été allumées – ce que lui semblait, sur le moment, comme étrange.

Duarte Levy & Paulo Reis

SOS Madeleine McCann