Quoting ourselves on our last post “The McCann Trial”:
“To sum up a very long post, it [the complaint] was to have the McCanns continue to be perceived as being declared innocent by the Portuguese when government has to decide about granting or not Operation Grange further funds for the next fiscal year.”
And we learned this week that the UK government has granted Operation Grange further funding for the next 6 months.
Or, in practical terms, that it won’t take any action on the case until the complaint has been decided by the Portuguese Supreme Justice Court.
The other side has achieved what it wanted: further funding before the start of the next fiscal year.
In that same post we also described what would be their next step:
“This way, the other side can turn to the government and say, see, the people are now quenching their thirst in seeing the McCanns punished, so now is the ideal time to blame it all on them to have given a window of opportunity for Maddie to have been killed in apartment and her body taken by that infamous but illusive European human trafficking gang.
In their defense they will say that if one looks at things properly, the McCanns and the T9 will have been punished and the British elite will remain protected and unharmed.
The only victims will be Mr Amaral, who is Portuguese and nowhere near being part of its elite, so is an understandable and acceptable casualty and Brenda Leyland who can be considered a collateral victim.”
But not every win is a victory. Sometimes it’s a huge defeat.
Can the reader looking at things where they are standing now, see from the above where is the enormous, significant and decisive difference between what the other side intended, expressed above, and what they can now expect to happen?
Before we explain what we mean, we can start by saying that things are really not looking good for them.
2. Infuriating government
We would like to remind readers of what we said about this
In our “The McCann trial” post:
“That [the complaint] was, or is, a risky move, or one filled with uncertainty.
Uncertainty not about the outcome of the complaint but because it may not convince the government and it may even backfire as the response from the Supreme Justice Court will highlight even further how the McCanns were never cleared.”
And this about the making of Gerry as an NHS wonder-hero:
“We do have to say that bringing in the NHS and its financial difficulties into this issue seems to us quite a desperate move and quite an antagonising one. Not seeing this generating any sympathy from the government.”
The week before that in our post “The complaint”, we had also said this:
“Note, nowhere have we said we think this tactic [the complaint] is destined for success, we have just described it.
In fact, it may even infuriate government as no one likes to be forced into a decision.”
Even though a massive campaign by the Daily Mail, the Mirror, the Sun and ITV to promote neglect and to boost the public lynching of the McCann couple, it was only the complaint against the Portuguese Justice Court that we think ended up pressuring the government into giving in to what the other side wanted.
But did they really get what they wanted? We don’t think so.
First of all, it cannot be considered a surprise that after placing the government in a position of being seen wasting yet another £85,000, on top of the many, many millions already wasted, that it wouldn’t be pleased.
Millions wasted on a farce that everyone knows to be a farce in a country where there are people struggling to make ends meet, the NHS is struggling to survive and all the future seems to hold is cuts in benefits and hikes in prices and taxes.
One cannot poke a wasp’s nest with a 2-inch stick and then claim to be surprised because one has been bitten mercilessly.
We have, we think, made our point about why we think negligence is of the utmost importance to the other side: it creates the window of opportunity for the evil men to have come, have entered the apartment, killed Maddie and taken her body with them.
What we haven’t mentioned yet, and it’s important that people realise that, is that negligence is also their alibi.
It’s what keeps the McCanns away from the crime scene.
It’s what keeps Gerry away from the Smith sighting.
This alibi is the main reason for many, who believing that Maddie is dead but because they continue to firmly believe that the McCanns were negligent come to the deduction that what happened to the little girl was something accidental on her own, and so condemn much more the alleged and confessed negligence than whatever caused Maddie to die.
Negligence means they weren’t there when Maddie died, to these people, the most they are guilty of involving the direct reasons why Maddie died, is to have over-sedated the girl completely by accident.
To them, that is perfectly forgivable and to those who think she died alone in an accidental fall, do not even have that to condemn them.
What they want the McCanns to be punished for is their alibi: negligence.
4. The importance of being vague
But what we want to draw the attention to is something outside negligence that is equally as important: vagueness.
Although we have already pointed it out several times, we haven’t given the necessary emphasis to the importance of the vagueness that the evil men who killed and took Maddie must have.
The patsy being a vague entity is absolutely mandatory for the other side be able to pull of the “Third Option”.
There can only be a vague patsy, like as vague as the European human trafficking gang so many times referred to before.
Note that it has to be European. Best not pinpoint it to just one country because that may make that country react to discredit the whole thing by denying with detail.
Just let it be said that it’s a European gang, as it has, and every European country will think it is from another but their own and so will allow it to fly.
Any further detailing and it will give people the opportunity to go investigate and call the bluff.
Pin it on a man, any man, and the “Third Option” has absolutely no legs to walk not only no one will accept such a burden without having caused it, as the man’s life will be scrutinised to the utmost minute detail.
|With thanks to Ben Thompson|
That’s why, once we got to know that the Sunday Express was going to run that story on its front page, we all waited anxiously on Saturday night to see who was that man who it was said would be the key to the mystery.
It turned out to be “one person who detectives want to speak to who was near to the area where Madeleine disappeared almost 10 years ago”.
Or, in other words, very vague.
It could be anyone who was in Praia da Luz when Maddie disappeared. That basically told us absolutely nothing because if anyone is to be chosen to take the fall, then the only certainty there will be is that he was in Praia da Luz on the evening/night of May 3rd.
Imagine if a name had been given.
The internet would rush to check that person inside out to the point of when the rooster at the first light of Sunday crowed the name of the person of interest in the Maddie case, some chicken would cluck him to silence and tell him how it had already been found out how ridiculous that name had turned out to be, note the past tense.
There cannot absolutely be a palpable patsy only a vague one.
Can the reader now fully understand the REAL importance of the Express’s headline “Madeleine Bombshell: Police net closes in on just one man who is key to the mystery”, by Caroline Wheeler, published Mar 12 2017?
Indeed a bombshell.
It has the beauty of being vague by itself, as we just said, while it simultaneously disintegrates into microscopic fragments the vagueness absolutely needed to the other side to pull off the “Third Option”.
From the article: “just one man”, “have identified a person”, “there is a specific person of interest”, “there is one individual”, “find the “person of interest””, “a “solid live lead””, “there is just one person” and “on the key lead”.
Not identified but certainly NOT a vague man, according to SY. From that moment on, that unidentified but clearly known individual could no longer ever represent the vague European human trafficking gang.
According to the Express, SY have said that they had a clearly identified person and for that person to be the key to the mystery, as he’s said to be and Whitehall and the Home Office have agreed with enthusiasm, then he clearly has to be able identify other possible suspects with the precision and the detail expected from him.
This is what the other side didn’t expect to hear and certainly didn’t want to hear.
On February 7, they didn’t expect or want to hear that the Portuguese justice system had never cleared the McCanns and on March 13 they didn’t expect or want to hear that their so much needed European human trafficking gang had forever been thrown out with the bath water.
The government granted them what they wanted, the further funding of Operation Grange but at the same time pulled the carpet right from under their feet.
They are now left with one of 2 options, outside truth: a real palpable patsy or archival.
One not being possible, they can only fight for the other. And that’s what they are doing.
5. The other side reacts
This caught the other side totally by surprise, as one would expect it would. It’s not everyone who is able to react with calmness after seeing all their blueprints go up in flames from one minute to the next.
To understand what happened, let’s see how things developed on this issue.
The Daily Mail, the interesting Daily Mail, was the first to break the news about the further funding of Operation Grange, or the victory for the other side, on May 11 2017 at 22:54, in an article by Tracey “Lazzeri” Kandohla “McCanns are given £85,000 boost to fund Madeleine search for another six months as police reveal they are closing in on her kidnapper”.
“Kate and Gerry McCann tonight said they are 'very grateful' for the continued support by Scotland Yard amid fears the controversial £13million investigation into Maddie's disappearance, codenamed Operation Grange, was being shelved.”
And the Mail was also the first to report on the ‘key-witness’:
“A Met Police spokesperson (…) refused to say if they were now trying to quiz one final Portuguese suspect, simply saying: 'We are cracking on. The Operation Grange team are not prepared to discuss any lines of inquiry while the investigation is ongoing.'”
No one had spoken before about a key suspect, much less a Portuguese one, so what was the Mail then asking the Met to confirm or deny?
They speak no more of this individual in the article. Its slant is all about expressing how wasteful the £85,000 is. How indeed Operation Grange had gotten another chance to keep head above water but all was just a waste of time and money.
The other side wasted no time.
In the same article where their victory is acknowledged, they immediately proceeded to pressure the government into closing the process by saying, look how bad you, government, are looking now and as the McCanns have already been appropriately punished by public vilification, isn’t it best to blame it all on that evil gang, close the whole thing and put this all behind us and just focus on Brexit?
We think they either tried to minimise the importance of the key-witness or failed to realise it then as they were in a hurry to press on with their campaign.
Unfortunately for them, they were in for a surprise.
Exactly at 00:01, Sun, Mar 12, 2017 when the Express wrote “just one man”, “have identified a person”, “there is a specific person of interest”, “there is one individual”, “find the “person of interest””, “a “solid live lead””, “there is just one person” and “on the key lead”.
It seems they were stunned. Their first reaction was to do the same as with the Jodie Marsh tweets, and that was to bring in Kerry Needham to distract by sympathy.
She, certainly by coincidence on Mar 12, 2:02 pm, made the same appeal she made in early January. As we keep saying, it would be interesting to know why she was repeating it without ever pressing publicly the South Yorkshire Police about the details of their certainty as to what happened to Ben.
This appeal appeared by the hand of Natasha Rigler, in the Sun, that together with the Daily Mail and the Mirror completes the tabloid triumvirate, in the article “PLEASE TELL SOMEONE WHERE I AM, Missing Ben Needham pleads for help ‘from beyond the grave’ in fresh appeal written by toddler’s desperate mum”
Truth be said, it distracted little or nothing.
It took time for the other side time to react.
After all the word “bombshell” in the Sunday Express headline could simply not be ignored or to pretend it wasn’t written. The vagueness of the European human trafficking gang had suddenly gone, so naturally they struggled.
Only at 22:25 did the reaction come, through the Mirror, the Daily Mail’s sidekick in this matter, by the hand of Tracey Kandohla – who else? – and Matthew Young, “Madeleine McCann cops hunt worker at resort as they fear he 'kept secrets' from local police”
They identify key-witness quite clearly:
“police are hunting for a worker from the resort where Madeleine McCann vanished who they believe has clues about her ¬disappearance.
The Portuguese man was at the Ocean Club in Praia Da Luz when the three-year-old was snatched in 2007.
He gave a statement at the time but detectives fear he may have kept secrets.
A local police source said: “British officers are very keen to question him.”
The former resort worker being hunted by police on the Madeleine McCann case gave a -witness statement two days after the girl vanished.
But British officers trying to find the youngster fear he may have kept secrets from local detectives that could have led to a ¬breakthrough in the case.
And they now want to speak to the former staff member who worked at the Ocean Club in Praia da Luz on the Algarve, where three-year-old Madeleine vanished in May 2007.”
On reading this, one would say the other side was enthusiastic knowing that SY had this key-witness.
But then one has to read the following to fully understand what is going on:
“They are not suggesting he stole Maddie but he may know people who could have been involved after a burglary went wrong. The investigation in Britain seems to be grinding to a halt and they want to rule him out of the case if not rule him in.”
Note first that the hypothesis is placed for consideration that this key-witness could even be of no interest to the case.
That, of course, contradicts what the Express said: “the Met is taking the development so seriously that leading Whitehall officials are being briefed on its progress” and “detectives are now confident the net is closing in on the key lead which is why an application was made to the Home Office for extra funding and a stay of execution for the investigation.”
We would say that £85,000 is quite a large amount for Whitehall to have committed on an uncertain ‘so-and-so’ lead.
Whitehall and the Home Office are shown to be absolutely convinced that this is it, that this is the break investigators were looking for, that this is what will finally solve the mystery!
The second thing to note is the most important words in the above: “a burglary went wrong”.
To note that the same Tracy Kandhola, just 2 hours before the Mirror article co-signed another together with David Pilditch (at 20:06, later updated at 20:47) published by the Express “The McCanns welcome extra funding for Maddie search as police chase new lead” in which the McCanns are shown to be grateful for the £85,000 but where there’s no mention of the burglary or of any suggestion that the person of interest didn’t steal Maddie.
Two hours later, we are back to the bungled burglary it seems.
The bungling burglar, the theory that had been abandoned in favour of the European human trafficking gang, is now back. Out of the blue, popping out like a rabbit pulled from a magician’s hat.
We had Gerry McCann saying during the 2016 anniversary celebrations that there wouldn’t be any more anniversary celebrations and now we are all bracing, since early February, for what appears to be quite intense activities to celebrate the 10th anniversary in May; we had in August last year the McCanns so broke that they had to fire Clarence Mitchell and now we have them not only able to financially continue the search but to be able to rehire Clarence Mitchell, to pay all legal bills from the Lisbon trial and to pay Carter-Ruck in case anyone dares cross the line; and we also saw last year the bungled burglary abandoned and now it seems it’s back as the most likely hypothesis.
Finally, it’s a farce.
The missing comical bit that was at fault has now been fitted in to make it complete.
If this is not cringing, we don’t know what cringing is.
The third thing to note is how the article immediately withdraws any guilt from the key-witness. You may not be important but if you are you are not a participant you are just a witness. One who has failed to come forward all these years.
The British justice system is indeed unique, able to rule out people before it hears them. It did that with the McCanns, so said Andy Redwood, and now it seems, is doing it again with a key-witness.
6. Guidelines for the other side
So, to understand what is going on, the other side was suddenly faced with the fact that the vagueness of the European human trafficking gang had gone straight out the window, and also the possibility of there being a real key witness – we will speak of this person later on – it is doing the only thing it can do: pressuring the government to archive.
They do have their hands completely tied by the unquestionable fact that this person is not vague.
That is a huge limitation and within the very narrow space they have to manoeuvre, we think the other side will follow the following four guidelines:
#1. Get back into making the bungled burglary possible. Keep the storyline, it wasn’t the gang but a burglar. Find a way for it to be deemed unsolved and continue to pressure the government into archival. If archival not possible, then try to find a way to fit key-witness in a ‘useful’ way into a Ben Needham style finish, even knowing the bungling burglar did not steal anything and took the body with him. If the Ben Needham scenario doesn’t work, then as a last and desperate resort point all and every possible firepower into making the McCanns take the blame on their own;
#2. Continue to pass the idea the McCanns can continue the search and will understand completely if Grange closes with the archival. Convey the idea that the UK has done ALL it could so it’s best the rest be left to the couple. The fact that this goes against every principle in the relationship of citizens and their state matters not, the McCanns can continue, so please close the case;
#3. Shame on the government for overspending the £85,000. The sooner this thing is closed the less of the £85,000 will be spent, so best quickly be determined that key-witness is not key after all and determine the case as unsolved, so close the darn thing;
#4. Stoke and keep the fire of the popular trial of the McCanns very much alive and strong by pursuing negligence relentlessly. It will always be, until the fat lady sings, the window of opportunity for a bungled burglary, for a Ben Needham finish, for archival and most importantly it is what provides the alibi from the crime scene.
As can easily be understood, the ice they are skating on is quite thin, to say the least.
As the Portuguese say – and we are not promoting hunting – he who has no dog, hunts with a cat.
They have little to cling to, so will cling to it for dear life.
They have lost the initiative, so are limited to reacting. Guideline #1, shows clearly they will shoot in any direction.
But please note that outside Guideline #1, which had to be altered very quick and unexpectedly, the other 3 are in accordance with what was planned previously.
If it wasn’t that the key-witness was so clearly identified, all would be going to plan for the other side.
7. Good Morning Britain
In this context, one can now understand what happened on ITV’s Good Morning Britain of March 13.
|From here, (Anon 13 Mar 2017, 21:30:00)|
- Jim Gamble’s CEOP pal and fellow speaker at INEQE’s conferences, Graham Hill,
- McCann anointed and libel sanctified negligence accuser Karen Danczuk,
- retired Met Officer Sue Hill
Due to technical difficulties we did not get to see negligence being debated, and although Graham Hill states that having a BBQ in a backyard with two walled entrances and a public road in between it and the house is perfectly normal, we didn’t get to see Karen Danczuk’s wagging finger about the couple’s negligence.
We think the idea would have been to have on one side Sue Hill and Piers Morgan discuss how the £85,000 was or wasn’t being wasted and on the other Graham Hill fight it out with Karen Danczuk whether the McCanns were or were not neglectful.
The first debate we got to see, the second didn’t happen due to sound problems.
The intended end result?
Having the mob shouting at the top of its voice, which it did, that yes, it is a scandalous waste of money, and yes they were criminally neglectful!
Then it was fed by the media how the public felt outraged about the £85,000 and how wrong the mob thought Piers was in defending that it was money well spent.
If the debate between Hill and Danczuk had happened, we most probably would have witnessing the mob raging against Hill for defending that the McCanns had not neglectful.
And because that negligence debate didn’t fly off, along come Kirstie Allsopp and Dara O’Briain, publicly defending the McCanns to make sure the mob was kept entertained with the subject.
Common denominator in all this: a raging mob going after anyone not supporting that the government should be ashamed to have given Operation Grange the money and clobbering anyone supporting that the McCanns had not been neglectful.
And didn’t we get just that? We did.
The Pied Piper plays the music and the children just follow him.
As they can’t control what role the key-witness is to play, all they can do is try to dissuade the government by continuing to put pressure on neglect and on the wasteful £85,000, while making the best in passing the message that it will be alright for the investigation to close unsolved.
8. The other side front-runners
Certainly by sheer coincidence, it seems that Piers Morgan, Kirstie Allsopp and Dara O’Briain are from the same PR company, NMP Live.
And has anyone else noticed how, even though Maddie continues to be right up there on the headlines and the enthusiasm she showed by having been seen by millions, Katie Hopkins has fallen silent on the subject?
The latest tweet on the subject, as far as we can tell, was to criticise the £85,000 in a tweet in which she annexed the radio show where she clearly promotes that Maddie was taken because she was left alone.
Point is, when one lists all these minor celebrities engaged in favour and “against” the McCanns, one can see quality is much to be desired. Very much like looking again at the list of people that the plaintiffs called to take the stand in the Lisbon trial.
On one side we have Katie Hopkins, Mark Williams-Thomas, Jodie Marsh, Karen Danczuk, Piers Morgan, Graham Hill, Kirstie Allsopp and Dara O’Briain, while on the other we have Whitehall and the Home Office.
And we wouldn’t call the Prime-Minister a referee in this but rather say she is an interested party for one of the sides. We will let the reader guess which one we think it may be.
The other side’s team may be making a lot of noise, and it is, but if that’s the best team the other side has to present then things are really looking bad for them.
The need to continue antagonising the government after having done so and causing a serious backfiring, shows things are really going bad for them.
9. Pat Brown
A question some may be asking is why we aren’t criticising Pat Brown as she clearly has also publicly defended neglect:
“Ms Brown said Madeleine most likely died an accidental death that was “covered up”.
“The evidence supports the theory of an accident occurring through neglect and possible medication,” she said.””
We have publicly shown our disagreement with her. We think there was no negligence and no medication.
However, the negligence that Pat Brown defends is the one we agree should be debated.
Note that all others promoting neglect shy away from death in the apartment. Jodie Marsh was silenced and Karen Danczuk backtracked very conveniently.
The negligence Pat Brown defends, and with which we disagree, is one we have said we wouldn’t mind seeing being defended. We welcome it because it allows for a serious and reasonable debate.
By linking neglect to Maddie’s death and by stating very explicitly that abduction is absurd, Pat Brown can now be questioned what sort of accident does she think Maddie suffered, as well as when it happened and if the parents were there or not and if not, and if not if anyone else was present.
All within the negligence scenario she defends.
Same happens with Moita Flores who seems to defend, at least apparently, the Tapas dinners. We disagree with him on that as readers know.
However, he does ask for a reconstruction to be done, in fact states that it is the only way to clarify what happened and we agree with that.
Such a reconstruction should start with the group sitting down around a table equal to the one pictured and signalled in Mr Amaral’s book. No other. Not even the one used in Mr Amaral’s TVI documentary.
If they don’t fit around that table, the one in Mr Amaral’s book, then the group AND the Tapas staff should be asked how were the T9 able to have so many meals there and even find space for the Quiz Mistress.
Even though we disagree with both we are fully aware that when they stated abduction is ridiculous and that death happened inside the apartment is to validate the dog findings in our opinion.
And that opens the can of worms we want opened.
Unlike with Katie Hopkins’ ‘they-took-her-negligence’ or ‘abduction-negligence’, we fully support the spreading of the word of Pat Brown’s ‘she-died-negligence’, even though we don’t agree with it.
The wider it spreads, the better it is for truth even though we think it is not true. It allows the debate and that is what matters.
10. The key-witness
The question one has now to ask is who is this key-witness is and if it poses or not a real threat to the other side.
Carlos Anjos in the CMTV debate about this individual seems to imply that they are pointing to a homeless man, a man who has a miserable life:
“This man worked at the Ocean Club, it is said (referring the news segment) that it's not known whether he is Portuguese or not, actually he is Portuguese, and it is not true either that he has vanished, he might not have a fixed address because he might be without a home, given the miserable life that he has. This man committed a crime of burglary in the morning, close to noon, at a time the child was in the beach with the mother, and the father.”
He seems to be pointing to one of the 4 July 2014 arguidos.
In our post “Outrageous” we then said that we thought that José Carlos Silva and Sergei Malinka were the only ones who were of interest to the case, and the homeless man and the drug addict were only brought in to distract, abused because they are poor and powerless.
We disagree with Carlos Anjos, and we think he’s just guessing based on what can be read in the British press.
Yes, a burglary is mentioned but it is also clearly said that the witness is not implicated in it, as we have shown in this post. So, if what the press says is true, then the key-witness is not a burglar. The press says he was an Ocean Club staff member in May 2007.
We have to be coherent and must point out, as we have done with the Ben Needham case where we have repeatedly called readers attention that only the media has mentioned Dino Barkas as the culprit for Ben’s accident near the farmhouse, we have to say all we have on this person is what is being reported by the press.
The Express said that he was just an individual who was in the same area of Portugal when she went missing and the Mirror gave further details and says he’s a worker from the resort, a Portuguese man, who gave a statement at the time two days after Maddie disappeared.
Both articles imply the same thing and that he needs to be found, which we deduce means he has gone under the radar for some reason.
We can only speculate.
And we will only speculate in saying that things are pointing towards Tapas waiter José Baptista.
Anorak blog has this post on Oct 23 2007:
“DAILY EXPRESS front page: “MADELEINE – ‘McCANNS OR A FRIEND MUST BE TO BLAME’. Tapas bar waiter’s astonishing attack”
José Baptista served the McCanns and party on that night Madeleine disappeared. “I did not think she had been taken by an abductor,” says he. “I told them [the police] it had to be one of the family or a friend. It had to be someone close”
Mr Baptista is a “crucial eyewitness””
Then this was published by the Daily Mail, on Dec 16 2007, by Rebecca Camber “Key witness casts doubt over Kate McCann's account of Madeleine's disappearance”
“A crucial witness has cast fresh doubt over Kate McCann's account of the night her daughter disappeared in a new police quiz.
Detectives consider the testimony of an Ocean Club waiter as the "trump card" in their investigation, it was claimed today.
The holiday resort employee was first on the scene moments after Madeleine's mother discovered she was missing at 10pm on May 3.
His evidence, which highlights a number of contradictions in the McCanns' statements, is said to be so vital to the police inquiry that they have re-interviewed the waiter for the third time in recent days.
Crucially, the member of staff, who has not been identified, claims that the parents and their holiday friends, the so-called Tapas Nine, did not check on their children every 30 minutes.
Contrary to what Kate McCann told police, the tapas restaurant worker also said that Kate McCann did scream: "They've taken her, they've taken her" when she learnt Madeleine was missing.
He said instead of running back to the tapas bar where she was dining with her husband Gerry and friends, Mrs McCann raised the alarm from the balcony of their holiday apartment in Praia da Luz.
The mother's precise words have become a pivotal issue in the case, with Portuguese police questioning why she would automatically assume Madeleine had been abducted.
His version of events contrasts dramatically with the account friends of the couple have given.
They claim that the 39-year-old GP raised the alarm when she ran back to the restaurant on 3 May shouting "Madeleine's gone, Madeleine's gone."
The highly respected Portuguese newspaper, Diario de Noticias reported today that the eyewitness account is considered a "trump card", critical to pining down supposed contradictions in the accounts of the Tapas Nine.
The Ocean Club employee has been re-interviewed at Portimao police station in recent days about the McCanns' behaviour where he reaffirmed his original statement.
Policia Judiciaria detectives believe the key to unlocking the mystery of Madeleine's disappearance lies within the group and alleged inconsistencies in their witness statements are at the heart of the investigation.
The revelation comes as police prepare to fly to Britain where Kate and Gerry McCann and their holiday friends will be re-interrogated about their movements on the night she went missing.
Police suspect that Madeleine died in an accident in the apartment and the McCanns disposed of her body - an allegation the couple have denied.
Detectives are working on the theory some of their friends helped cover up the crime and some could be named as suspects when they are re-interviewed.
But the McCanns have always insisted Madeleine was snatched from their Ocean Club apartment while they were dining with their friends just yards away.
The waiter's account mirrors that of nanny Charlotte Pennington who said she heard Kate McCann scream: "They've taken her, they've taken her!"
But other waiters working at the holiday complex have disputed key elements of his evidence, saying that the group checked on their children every 20 minutes.
Yesterday the McCanns' spokesman Clarence Mitchell furious denied the claims.
He said: "This is all lies. Kate has consistently and categorically absolutely denied that she said that on the veranda.
"But in the evening she may have said it at some stage as a general remark, but she did not run out with this phrase.
"Whoever this guy is and if he is saying this, he is either making it up or he is mistaken.
"Kate, Gerry and their friends told the truth. They will continue to maintain their stories, because it is the truth. Whatever this guy is saying, we reject it, it is not true."”
The Express confirms this story as well:
“MADELEINE: POLICE QUIZ WAITER FOR THIRD TIME
Monday December 17,2007
By David Pilditch in Praia da Luz
Detectives trying to solve the mystery of Madeleine McCann have questioned a crucial witness for the third time.
Portuguese police believe he could prove that her parents are lying over her disappearance.
Yesterday it emerged that the witness – a waiter at the tapas restaurant where Kate and Gerry McCann dined with their friends every night – has provided investigators with key evidence.
The Portuguese man is said to have been the first person to see Kate McCann as she raised the alarm after discovering her daughter had gone missing from the family’s holiday apartment in Praia da Luz. He has allegedly given a dramatically different account of the events on May 3 from statements made by the McCanns and their friends.
It is because the waiter’s testimony is considered so critical that he has been interviewed three times.
The latest interview took place just days ago as detectives were drawing up a list of questions to be put to the so-called Tapas Nine. The group are set to be interviewed in Britain by police in the presence of the Portuguese officers heading the case.
As part of the process, the McCanns and their friends could later be summoned back to Portugal for a face-to-face showdown with the witness.
In Portugal, detectives can set up a confrontation between key witnesses and suspects to find out who is telling the truth.
Yesterday one report in Portugal said: “The employee’s testimony will be one of the ‘trump cards’ in clearing up the McCanns’ contradictions and those of their friends.”
The witness claimed that instead of running back to the tapas restaurant, which is part of the Ocean Club complex where they were staying, Kate raised the alarm from the balcony of her apartment.
He told investigators that Kate screamed: “They’ve taken her. They’ve taken her”.
A series of other witnesses have since come forward to back his evidence, including British nanny Charlotte Pennington, 20.
Kate’s first words became a central issue as they appeared to indicate she had already rejected the possibility that Madeleine had simply wandered off. Police questioned why the 39-year-old GP was so certain that her daughter had been abducted, and regard it as possible evidence that she was already engaged in a cover-up.
In contrast, friends insisted that rather than shouting from the balcony, Kate ran straight back to the restaurant crying: “Madeleine’s gone. Madeleine’s gone.”
The waiter also disputes the Tapas Nine’s claims that they were taking it in turns to check on their children every half an hour.
He is said to have told police that members of the party left the table much less frequently.
Yesterday a report in respected Portuguese newspaper Diario de Noticias said: “This waiter is a witness considered crucial to the investigation.
“The investigators want to find out about what happened during dinner – the conversations and the McCanns’ behaviour as well as their alleged trips to the apartment.
“The employee still insists it is not true that the child’s parents checked their children every half hour.”
Alleged inconsistencies in the Tapas Nine’s evidence have been raised by a series of independent witnesses.
Another waiter at the tapas restaurant, José Baptista, told The Daily Express that only male members of the party had left the table during the evening.
His evidence led Portuguese detectives to question why it was Kate who discovered her daughter had vanished.
But last night the McCanns’ spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, dismissed reports of the waiter’s testimony as “all lies”.
He conceded that Kate may have said “They’ve taken her” at some point but they were not her first words.
He said: “Kate has consistently and categorically absolutely denied she said that on the verandah. She may have said it at some stage as a general remark, but she did not run out with this phrase.
“Whoever this guy is, and if he is saying this, he is either making it up or he is mistaken.
“Kate, Gerry and their friends told the truth. They will continue to maintain their stories, because it is the truth. Whatever this guy is saying we reject it – it is not true.””
On the next day the Express confirms the witness went into hiding:
“MADELEINE: WITNESS GOES ON THE RUN ‘TO PROTECT HIS EVIDENCE’
Tuesday December 18,2007
By David Pilditch in Praia da Luz
THE key witness in the missing Madeleine McCann case was in hiding last night after fleeing Portugal.
Police have sworn the waiter to secrecy over his vital testimony and know where he is.
But friends say he is terrified his identity is about to be revealed and that he will come under pressure from rival factions in the case.
He is scared of British and Portuguese government influence in the probe. Friends claim he is also wary of the team of private eyes hired by Kate and Gerry McCann to help find their daughter.
The mother of expat British estate agent Robert Murat – the only other suspect in the case – has accused investigators of bribing witnesses into changing their stories.
The tapas bar waiter – described by police as their “trump card” – has given what detectives believe is the most reliable account of what happened the night the four-year-old vanished. They have questioned him three times, most recently last week.
Officers say his story can prove Madeleine’s parents are lying over her disappearance. Many of the 100 questions officers want to ask the McCanns and their holiday friends – the so-called Tapas Nine – are thought to be based on his information. But, according to former colleagues at the Ocean Club resort in Praia da Luz, the knowledge he is playing such a vital role in the case that has gripped the world has horrified him.
One said: “He does not want to be involved in any of this. He was just a restaurant worker. His only problem was remembering food orders. He’s terrified.”
The waiter was the only resort worker to see Kate, 39, raise the alarm after apparently discovering her daughter missing just after 10pm on May 3. She insisted she ran into the tapas bar where her husband Gerry, 39, and their friends were eating and screamed: “Madeleine’s gone. Madeleine’s gone.”
But the waiter is understood to have told police Kate raised the alarm from the apartment balcony 75 yards away, screaming: “They’ve taken her. They’ve taken her.’’
Detectives want to know why she assumed so quickly her daughter had been abducted – and not simply wandered off to look for her parents.
Police value the waiter’s account because they cannot understand why – if Kate thought Madeleine had been snatched while unattended – she would then leave her twins Sean and Amelie in the apartment to run back to the tapas bar.”
The articles don’t name the waiter but we think it’s reasonable to think that it’s José Baptista, as we showed in our May 24 2013 post “Mind your Ps”.
If José Baptista went into hiding he was spotted by Danny Collins the author of the book “Vanished” because the book says this about this waiter as we showed in our “The lady vanishes” post of May 31, 2013:
“A large round table held 9 revellers, all medical professionals with their partners who were now enjoying an after-dinner quiz, organised by the Ocean Club aerobics teacher. Najova Chekaya. Waiter José Baptista thought it unusual that the loquacious British group should linger so long every night after dinner at the table they claimed as their own, talking and drinking local wine until after 10pm…..but tonight, finding tables would be no great problem, as only a few were taken up by the group’s fellow quiz competitors
Thursday was 3rd May and the normally busy resort was still in low season that wouldn’t end until the advent of the official early summer on 25th of May. Besides, the group paid well for the best poolside table, consuming an average of 8 to 10 bottles of wine with and after their meals each night.
José noticed one of the men of the group from what he gleaned from conversation at the table to be doctors, raise a finger and indicate an empty wine bottle. He smiled in reply and nodded, crossing over to the wine rack against the wall of the adjoining restaurant.
That evening, the arrivals of the British party at the bar had been erratic ….with a worried Jane Tanner arriving later with her husband, before leaving almost immediately, to check on her sick daughter once again.
Gerry went back to check on the children within half an hour of arrival …soon after Jane Tanner’s return…. It was the turn of Mark Oldfield to rise and look at his wristwatch. He said something to the Scottish couple and a woman José assumed was his wife, before leaving the table to walk towards the Ocean Club apartments to fulfil his shared obligation of looking after the group’s children.
Of the group who had holidayed in Greece the previous year and found their child watch system to work admirably with no need of in-house babysitters, only Dr David Payne and his attractive doctor wife Fiona weren’t called to take part in the routine, having invested in a radio baby monitor.
José Baptista shook his head and clicked his tongue in disapproval as Dr Oldfield left the group… it was 9.38 pm. He often saw this man and his dark-haired wife during the day, sitting next to the pool with their two young daughters in the company with the Scottish couple and their own three children.
It seemed to José that the children were always left alone at night. He had overheard club crèche staff remark that the late diners never took advantage of the crèche or on-site offer of babysitters…. one of the men would leave the table at approximately half – hour intervals that got increasingly more erratic as the evening progressed. Meanwhile, the little ones were left alone in the apartments for up to 3 hours.
José Baptista thought about his own large family and the love lavished on his nephews and nieces by his sisters and brothers and their partners
The doctor with the difficult English accent, the one the group called Gerry had taken his turn to visit the apartment earlier: 9.05 pm. If the group stayed drinking and talking to past 10 pm as was usual. José supposed Dr Gerry would follow the nightly ritual and his turn would come around again 30 minutes after Dr Oldfield returned.”
From his statement:
“When asked he says he clearly recalls the appearance of the girl’s parents, he does not know their names, together with a group of English tourists who generally accompanied them, as for almost a week prior to the disappearance they would dine practically every day in the Tapas restaurant. On the occasions he saw the group dining at the restaurant, he never saw the children. He does not remember ever having seen Madeleine’s face, which only happened when he saw her photograph after the disappearance.
During the dinner the men from the group would leave the table, returning a few minutes later. The witness says that he does not know where they went. These absences would last for about 15 minutes. He cannot say with what regularity these absences occurred…. Remembers these occurrences well as would often have to take a plate of food back…when he would find that the guest was not at the table when he came to serve the food.
He was in the kitchen between 22.00 and 22.30 when he was informed by a colleague that a client had entered the restaurant shouting.”
When it’s time to serve meals, the dishes usually arrive at approximately the same time as it doesn’t make sense for some to be watching others eat. When that happens, customers complain. The standard procedure of any restaurant is to try and serve the food to the customers of a table at the same time.
So, even if by coincidence when the food was being served, one of the T9 would be temporarily absent and require for his or her food to be reheated, that would mean it would happen once a night, the time the dishes were being served. That customer would be away, and his plate be served when he returned. A one time occurrence per night.
We know that he was only on the night shift twice that week, Wednesday and Thursday.
We don’t think twice, Wednesday and Thursday, qualifies as “would often have to take a plate of food back”
And lest we forget, the Tapas was packed. Please remember people had to line up early in the morning to get a reservation for that day, and that day only.
So is it natural for a waiter to remember so much detail about a certain table? Memorise that only men were getting up from it? Did he memorise from all the other tables, supposedly with diners, all those who went from every single table to the loo or those who having forgotten something in their apartment, went back to it to return?
Oh, wait a minute, Collins is quite specific: “but tonight, finding tables would be no great problem, as only a few were taken up”.
We think that, unquestionably, José Baptista is a person of interest to the case, and if he happens to be the key-witness, then we agree that he is.
11. Back to 2007
We remind readers that we are doing what we think Carlos Anjos also did, and that is to guess.
We have no certainty the key-witness is even an Ocean Club staff member.
Please be aware that we were told that by the other side’s voicepieces.
A question that one has then to ask, is why is the other side pointing the finger to José Baptista, if he can be so damning?
Because José Baptista, confirms all the negligence AND isolates the blame on the couple and the group.
Please read again Guideline #1: first try bungled burglary, then archival, then a Ben Needham finish, then as a last and desperate resort point all and very possible firepower into making the McCanns take the blame on their own.
The other side is clutching at straws, it has to play the hand it has been dealt and their hand doesn’t even have a pair of deuces.
They will shoot in every direction and as things with this key-witness having obliterated vagueness, things quickly disintegrated.
If there’s a key witness, let it be one who pins all on the McCanns.
That’s why it’s interesting to see how the other side tackled Moita Flores saying he had no doubt Maddie died in the apartment.
First the Sun published on March 15 2017 05:34 (updated 05:49) the article “SICK MADDIE CLAIMS, Portuguese crime expert launches vile attack on Kate and Gerry McCann over their daughter’s disappearance” by Tracey Kandohla and Amanda Devlin.
Indeed it is filled with such expressions as “launches vile attack”, “spouts further outrageous claims”, “latest vile attack”, “shocking outburst”, “this pure speculation” and “rubbished Mr Flores' comments” but is quite explicit why a reconstruction is needed:
“Knocking down the abduction theory Flores added: “It would have been impossible to get through a window with a child.”
Mr Flores is now urging British police to put some of their new £85,000 Home Office cash boost towards conducting a reconstruction in the resort.
He said: “It is the only way to resolve the case.”
Ex-cop Mr Amaral, who led the initial hunt for Maddie, has previously called for her parents and their holiday friends to fly to Portugal to relive the fateful night in May 2007.
He has always stated a full reconstruction could produce a vital breakthrough in the £13 million Scotland Yard investigation.”
Of course we have to point out this in the article: “They don’t want to be litigious, and they can’t sue everyone, but it appears that people are saying whatever they like” which speaks for itself.
Also, we would like to note that Graham Hill and Mark Williams-Thomas were not mentioned in the article, and we think they might be offended for their services not having been acknowledged. Or maybe they are grateful they are not mentioned.
Then the Mail, at the end of that day, March 15 2017 21:41 (updated 22:13) published the article “'Maddie died in that apartment': Kate and Gerry McCann face fresh misery after Portuguese crime expert makes outrageous claim about the night she vanished” by Abe Hawken.
It is much more generic and is much more toned down than the Sun and it does place as a sub-title that “Crime expert Moita Flores claimed that their daughter 'died in their apartment'”.
Crime expert and not bungling crime expert, or so-called crime expert. Just plain crime expert.
And has also the following: “Mr Flores, a researcher and a writer, wants British police to invest a portion of their new £85,000 Home Office money to fund a reconstruction project in the Algarve” and “Referring to claims that the toddler was abducted, Mr Flores added: 'It would have been impossible to get through a window with a child', reports The Sun Online.”
We had the Sun also bringing in Pat Brown by the hand of Tracey Kandohla in the article published March 16 “SICK MADDIE 'COVER-UP' CLAIMS, Madeleine McCann’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann suffer fresh heartache as second crime expert claims ‘Maddie died in that apartment’”
It slams Pat Brown but it also has this:
“She told Australian website news.com.au she believes Maddie was never snatched, saying: “An abduction was extremely unlikely based on the amount of time, evidence at the scene, and every other shred of evidence there has ever been.”
She believes the three-year-old died in accidental death that was “covered up” through neglect and possible medication.”
And then we had Closer publishing on March 16 2017 the article by Emma Dodds “Portuguese crime expert: 'Madeleine McCann died in that apartment'”
The very same magazine that censored Jodie Marsh – we then supposed it was because she dared link death in apartment with the McCanns by bringing up cadaver scent – and that brought in Kerry Needham to criticise Marsh for having criticised the McCanns.
What is very interesting about this article is that there it doesn’t use any negative wording against Moita Flores:
“As the 10-year anniversary of Madeleine McCann's disappearance looms, Portuguese crime expert Moita Flores claims that Maddie “died in the apartment”
Nearly 10 years after the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, her case continues to stay in the public eye.
And a Portuguese crime expert has now claimed he thinks the three-year-old died in the apartment.
Moita Flores, who used to work in connection with the Policia Judiciaria, the Portuguese police who began the initial search, said: “Maddie died in that apartment, I have no doubt.”
He then commented on the abduction theory, saying: “It would have been impossible to get through a window with a child.””
And, to wrap it all beautifully, why not stop the search altogether? Maddie is dead and that solves it.
|With thanks to Lorraine Holden|
At least that is what Jerry Lawton seems to be suggesting in his article of March 16 in the Daily Star “Shock as expert says Brit cops ‘wasting time’ searching for Maddie – because ‘she’s dead’”
But he also says this in that article:
“Her [Pat Brown’s] claims were backed yesterday by criminologist Moita Flores, who was involved in the original police investigation.
He said he had “no doubt” the youngster was dead and felt cash should be used on a reconstruction of the night Madeleine vanished as “it is the only way to resolve the case’’”
Pat Brown and Moita Flores are being promoted by the other side.
It seems they have thrown the towel in and are paving the way to pinning it all on the McCanns, in case their begging for archival doesn’t work that seems to be what is most likely to happen.
We seem to be being transported back to 2007.
We have to remind the other side that was tried back in September 2007 and it was without success as the 6 questions we have placed in our “Maddie’s Pandora’s Box” post have to be answered and they couldn’t be then, or at least not by blaming only the McCanns:
“1. Why did the case take so long to solve?
2. Under what circumstances (who, why, when, where and how) did Maddie die?
3. If Maddie died in the apartment, why was body taken away from it?
4. If Maddie died in apartment and body taken away, where was it taken to between 10pm – 4am and subsequently on the following hours and days?
5. What happened to Maddie’s body and who and why helped for that to happen?
6. Who protected the McCanns and why were they protected the way they were?”
By pinning it all on the McCann, can they be all answered now? We are eager to find out.
The other side may bombard us with information, as it’s doing with the current media frenzy, to distract or pressure but at the end of the day is that these 6 questions have to be answered. Nothing else matters.
In 2007 a scandalous U-turn was done, we all remember that. But there are very significant differences between now and then: the public opinion, the vast majority not educated on the subject, is much less sympathetic to the couple, there are a lot more educated people on the subject who were back in 2007 and then the government worked together with the other side and now, if not a clear and significant disconnect, it’s clear they are not walking side by side on this.
12. The UK’s version of Emperor’s New Clothes
We seem to be in a new version of this tale. In the original story, the little boy points to the Emperor and points out that he’s naked. The crowd then falls silent, and the Emperor recognising his nudity, covers his privates and flees from the scene.
What we seem to be witnessing in this version, is not only one little boy shouting out that the Emperor is naked, as are all the other boys, girls, men and women in the crowd.
But the twist of this version is that the Emperor is refusing to recognise he was fooled and so pretends he can’t see all the fingers in his direction and continues to pretend that he’s dressed.
Not only is this Emperor putting on a poor spectacle for a monarch but is also prolonging endlessly the farce that is ridiculing him before the crowd and the world.
With each passing day the laughter at the Emperor is becoming more difficult to hide and all is becoming really embarrassing.
This to say that things are really crumbling down and the farce has now become too much of a farce, so we are not sure if the government should, or can afford to wait for the decision on the complaint.
Too many people in the crowd are blatantly pointing the finger at this absolutely naked Emperor.
The UK is just belittling itself before the eyes of the world by showing it can’t put a stop to this cringing ridiculousness.
Tell the truth is what we would recommend to this Emperor.
Like an injection, truth will be unpleasant and will hurt a bit, but as it cures once and for all the illness, is much better than pretending not to be sick when one is bedridden with the disease.
The British government has made a move.
In our opinion, a decisive and a revealing one which made the other side completely lose their footing and scramble frantically but unsuccessfully to find it.
We believe the other side is antagonising the government more out of lack of other options than from believing it is the way to success.
The other side may be counting on the foreseeable storm of events which may take priority over this case.
However, Operation Grange will have to reach some sort of conclusion and we don’t see any enthusiasm on the part of Whitehall or the Home Office to defer it unless it rather enjoys to continue to be insulted.
After all they have enthusiastically just now funded Operation Grange with £85,000 based on a solid bombshell, so we think they would look really foolish now if SY came up with nothing or with a very vague Ben Needham kind of solution.
The other side’s trumps, or personalities are weaker by the minute.
The importance of the key witness is immense for the truth and wraps up all very nicely.
That staff member can very easily join up all the dots and even the one represented by Euclides Monteiro, who we spoke of in our post “Person of interest”.
If that is done, then Operation Grange joins up with the PJ investigation and all is well when it ends well and it has all the conditions to end well.
Back to watching ostriches fly.