Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Window - Fabricated Evidence That Turned Out To Be A Lie - 5/5/2007

Agony as 3-yr-old vanishes from holiday flat

A HUGE hunt was going on last night for three-year-old Maddy McCann, feared snatched from her holiday flat.

Maddy is believed to have been taken as she slept in the complex on Portugal's Algarve as her doctor parents ate at a bar 120ft away. Her scent was picked up by a police sniffer dog. But it petered out after 400 yards.

Yesterday, 24 hours after the young child vanished in quiet Praia da Luz, anguished parents Gerry and Kate, both 38, of Rothley, Leics, begged for her return.

A friend said: "Kate rang us totally hysterical, saying Maddy was abducted. They're devastated."

The appalling news that three-year-old Maddy McCann was feared kidnapped from her holiday flat came in a distraught phone call early yesterday from her dad.

Heart specialist Gerry McCann rang his sister Trish in Scotland after Maddy vanished from her cot placed between two-year-old twins Sean and Amelie.
Trish revealed yesterday: "He was breaking his heart, saying 'Madeleine's been abducted, she's been abducted'."

Gerry and wife Kate, both 38, had been checking their three children in the family's ground-floor flat every 30 minutes as they dined with friends 120ft away.

Trish said: "When Kate checked, she came out screaming. Maddy had gone. The door was open and the window in the bedroom and shutters were jemmied open. Nothing had been touched and no valuables taken.

"They think someone must have come in the window and gone out the door with her."

Close family friend Gill Renwick, of Liverpool, who also spoke to GP Kate yesterday, said: "Poor Kate and Gerry don't know where to turn.

"Madeleine has obviously been taken. She couldn't have gone out on her own and the shutters were forced."

Maddy went missing at the Mark Warner Ocean club resort in the coastal village of Praia da Luz on Portugal's Algarve. A trail of her scent picked up by police dogs at the flat was followed to a supermarket just 400 yards away where it disappeared.

A 24-hour search by police, hundreds of villagers and British holidaymakers failed to find any trace of the child.

Last night Gerry and Kate, of Rothley, Leics, issued a statement saying they were hopeful Maddy would be found safe and well. It read: "This is a particularly difficult time for the family and we are all comforting each other. We have received lots of support from friends, family and the public and are very grateful.

"All the family's focus is in assisting the authorities in securing Madeleine's return."

A woman friend of the McCanns - one of their holiday party of nine adults and eight children - said: "We went for dinner at 8.45pm in a restaurant near the apartments as we've done every night.

"A parent from each family went back to check on the children every half hour.

"Someone checked at 9.15.

But when Kate went later Madeleine had gone.

"The window shutters, which had been closed since we arrived on Saturday, were open along with the window.

They can be opened from the outside.

"The window opens on to a car park.

The door to the room was shut.

It looks as if someone has come through the window and possibly left through the door."

Close family friend Jon Corner, of Liverpool, told how tearful Kate sobbed down the phone early yesterday: "Someone has taken my little girl."

Jon, godparent to the McCanns' twins, said: "She was in an absolutely hysterical state - very, very distressed. She blurted out Madeleine had been abducted.

"Kate said the shutters of the room were smashed.

Madeleine was missing It looks as though someone had gone straight past the twins to get to her.

Kate was incredibly upset. I've spoken to her since, and she's still completely devastated.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Robert Murat's Mum Slam's McCann's

Published: 12 Dec 2007

Robert Murat...suspect

GERRY and Kate McCann were today slammed by the mother of missing Maddie suspect Robert Murat.

Jenny Murat said her family had been 'penalised' because the McCanns had left Madeleine alone in their holiday apartment.

And she accused McCann's hired private detective agency of bribing witness to change their stories.

In an interview today, Mrs Murat, 71, said friends of the McCanns, who claim to have seen Mr Murat outside the apartment on the night Madeleine vanished seven months ago, were lying.

Her allegations have all been denied.

Mrs Murat said: "I really wish the McCanns had never come on holiday to Praia da Luz.

"I bet they wish they had never come on holiday either. The worst part of it is they did something wrong (by leaving Madeleine alone), we did nothing wrong and we have been penalised for their mistake."

She added: "It is really upsetting. I cannot tell you what has been going on here. It has just been horrendous."

She said the Metodo 3 agency had hired detectives to follow her for a week.

"Metodo were getting people to change their statements, following everybody everywhere. They were certainly following me.

"They were following me everywhere. Why? I don't know. It's pretty scary I can tell you.

"I am 71 and I am getting followed everywhere by people. Was it the Portuguese police? Was it the British police or was it Metodo 3?"

She reiterated her alibi for her son whom she insists was with her the whole evening on 3 May from 8pm.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Who Killed Madeleine McCann ?

On May 3, nine days before her fourth birthday, Madeleine McCann, a British girl on vacation with her parents in Portugal, disappeared. She hasn't been found in more than four months despite one of the most intensive and far-flung missing-person searches in history. This past spring and summer, Europe and much of the rest of the globe became fixated on the disappearance, which carries both the international breadth of the Diana tragedy and the hypersentimental, at times prurient fascination that Americans brought to the unsolved case of another little blond girl, JonBenét Ramsey.

The Pope and even bigger global celebrities--David Beckham and J.K. Rowling among them--have taken an interest in the search for Madeleine. People around the world have given more than $2 million to a private investigative fund begun by Drs. Kate Healy McCann and Gerry McCann, Madeleine's parents. Yet many Americans have only a vague sense of Madeleine's case and why it has mesmerized so many for so long. Only in the past few days, when it emerged that her parents might be charged with accidentally killing her, has Madeleine's image begun to appear with regularity in the U.S. media.

And so here are some answers--frustratingly blurry and contradictory as they are--to some key questions in the wide-open case.

1. Where's the girl?

THE MCCANNS, WHO LIVE IN CENTRAL England, had gone on vacation with a few friends to Praia da Luz (Beach of Light), a tourist town in southern Portugal. The resort they chose, the Ocean Club, had a reputation for being kid-friendly. On May 3, the group was dining at the resort's tapas bar while the kids slept. At about 10 p.m., Kate McCann has said, she went to check on Madeleine and her siblings, 2-year-old twins Sean and Amelie. Madeleine was gone. The McCanns were not initially suspected; they have consistently denied any role in the disappearance.

Relations between the family and the Portuguese police were difficult from the first hours. Police believed that, like most missing young children, Madeleine had simply wandered off and would soon be found. Crucial time was lost to that assumption. The Spanish border is less than two hours from Praia da Luz, yet authorities did not search cars leaving Portugal or distribute a description of the girl.

Police have since investigated thousands of leads and theories, some quite elaborate, including the much discussed idea that an international ring of pedophiles stakes out children for days and then extracts them with military precision. Another possibility explored was that a desperate childless couple paid a professional kidnapper to find a child. The rise of Hollywood theories--a cabal of James Bond pedophiles?--stemmed from the lack of physical evidence.

2. So, did the parents do it?

ON SEPT. 7, PORTUGUESE AUTHORITIES named the couple as suspects. Three days later, officials apparently leaked word that Madeleine's DNA had been found in the trunk of a car her parents rented 25 days after the girl went missing. (The parents were still in Portugal at the time. Vowing not to return home without Madeleine, they stayed there until two days after being named suspects, when they returned to England.) At first, the DNA news seemed the first real break in the case in months, and a new theory presented itself: the McCanns wanted a night out with friends, so they drugged their little ones with painkillers or sedatives. Madeleine's dose was mismeasured, or she had an unexpected reaction. The parents somehow hid her corpse for weeks and then got the body out in the trunk of their rental car even though a phalanx of reporters was camped in Praia da Luz.

The McCanns called the theory ludicrous, and this time they got some help in their denials from Portuguese authorities: police chief Alipio Ribeiro said on Portuguese TV that DNA tests on the car were not conclusive.
3. At the very least, aren't the McCanns guilty of negligence?

MADELEINE AND HER SIBLINGS WERE ALONE in their room while Kate and Gerry ate and drank with seven friends. How much the nine vacationers drank is another point of dispute; the amounts range from the just over four bottles of wine claimed by the McCanns to the 14 bottles alleged in some Portuguese news reports. The Ocean Club offers babysitters, but neither the McCanns nor their friends hired one. Instead, they apparently agreed to check on their kids every half hour. Once again, there are conflicting reports about whether the checks were carried out with precise regularity.

The tapas bar is roughly a 400-ft. (120 m) walk from the apartment where the McCann kids were sleeping. But the view from the bar to the apartment--a residential building occupied by locals as well as Ocean Club guests--is obscured by a wall, and the walk requires a circuitous route around the pool. What's more, the McCanns' apartment was on the ground floor, and the couple had left the place unlocked.

4. How did the case of one missing girl become so well known?

WITH ALL THE RUMORS THESE DAYS ABOUT the McCanns, it's hard to recall the early days in May and June when they were granted much sympathy, particularly in Britain. They are an attractive, accomplished and devout couple. They were also savvy about our particular media moment, quickly launching a website and posting YouTube videos about Madeleine. They expressed regret for leaving the kids alone. Gerry started a blog, and they traveled as far as Africa to publicize Madeleine's case. The couple had a brief audience with the Pope, and Gerry flew to Washington to meet with then Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

5. What happens next?

THE PORTUGUESE POLICE HAVE HANDED 3,000 pages of evidence to the district attorney, who in turn submitted them to a judge who must decide whether to bring charges against the parents. Given the usually glacial pace of the Portuguese justice system, the decision may not be quick. Meanwhile, the McCanns are back in England, surrounded by a resolutely supportive family. Some in Britain have called for the other McCann children to be removed to protective custody. Kate and Gerry won't allow that without a fight. They have hired top lawyers, including one who barred the extradition of Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. It was probably a bad p.r. move, but after months of global Madeleine news, it's clear it will take more than p.r. to figure out what happened to her.

Read more:,9171,1661684,00.html#ixzz1jpBbKjE5

Maddie cop torture rap

Published: 02 Jul 2009

THE disgraced ex-boss of the Madeleine McCann probe has been charged with torturing a witness in another missing child case.

Goncalo Amaral, 49, is accused of punching and slapping Leandro Silva — who wants £430,000 compensation — during the 2004 hunt for Joana Cipriano, eight.

Mum Leonor, 36, girlfriend of Leandro, was jailed for killing the girl in Figueira, Portugal, just miles from Praia da Luz where Maddie disappeared.

#McCann : What The media Were Thinking In 2007 - 'Are they guilty of the most elaborate and heinous confidence trick in history, deceitfully winning the trust and sympathy of the world's media, a British prime minister, the wife of the American president and even the Pope, to say nothing of international public opinion'.

Madeleine: a grimly compelling story that will end badly for us all

We're divided and now confused by the McCann investigation - and in real danger of losing our common decency
Visit the Sky News website and you'll see in the menu of topics the single word Madeleine, sandwiched between UK News and World News.
The story is now so big that it commands its own category, on a par with Politics or Business.
There is, of course, no need to supply a last name or any other details: Madeleine refers to what is surely becoming the biggest human interest story of the decade.
It's not just the hour-by-hour updates on television news or the you-the-jury phone-ins on the radio.
A more reliable indicator is the chatter heard in offices, at bus stops or in queues at the shops.
Thanks to the astonishing twist of recent days, the British collective conversation is not focused on the war in Iraq or the efficiency of the NHS, even if it should be. Instead, its great preoccupation is the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, a story that gets ever more strange.
Even before last week, the case had gripped.
The apparently random abduction and murder of children always does, whether it's Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman, Sarah Payne or the victims of Ian Brady and Myra Hindley. We fear these crimes like no other; they touch fears with deep roots in the cultural soil. The child snatcher is a creature from myth, whether the oldest Gaelic folktales or Little Red Riding Hood and Hansel and Gretel.
Modern storytelling is hardly immune: my own generation once cowered in terror from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang's Child Catcher. So when the news first broke in May that a sleeping child had vanished from her bed in a Portuguese holiday resort, all the familiar fears were stirred.
But last week brought a dizzying twist, one that has left the watching public badly confused.
The notion of a predatory stranger seizing Madeleine McCann was terrifying but uncomplicated: we knew how we were supposed to feel.
The naming by Portuguese police of the little girl's parents as formal suspects has obliged us to contemplate not an ancient fear but a grave taboo: infanticide.
Of course, the grim reality is that cases of parents slaying their young are all too common.
The boyfriend battering his lover's child to death has become a grisly staple of the news bulletin, usually consigned to halfway down the running order.
The middle-class temptation in such cases is to comfort themselves with the thought that these families are dysfunctional, that they are nothing like them.
The branding of the McCanns as suspects allows for no such lazy response.
Their campaign enjoyed such widespread press backing in part because they are the very model of a middle-class, professional couple: both are doctors, still society's most trusted group.
Indeed, since May, the sight of a distraught Kate McCann clutching Madeleine's toy Cuddle Cat had become the very image of parental love.
Even to conceive of them as the suspected killers of the daughter whose loss they have been grieving is to experience cognitive dissonance.
Which is why people don't know how to react.
Suddenly we have to hold two entirely contradictory thoughts in our head at the same time.
For the McCanns have now either suffered the cruellest fate imaginable - not only to have innocently lost their beloved daughter but also to have been publicly accused of a wicked crime - or they are guilty of the most elaborate and heinous confidence trick in history, deceitfully winning the trust and sympathy of the world's media, a British prime minister, the wife of the American president and even the Pope, to say nothing of international public opinion.
One of those statements, both of them extraordinary, describes the truth.
As a senior tabloid journalist put it to me yesterday: "They're either the victims of a horrible smear which they will never fully escape or they are cold, psychotic killers" responsible for the death of their own child.
His own newspaper now covers this story with both possibilities in mind.
Note the headlines in the Sun and the Mirror, carefully surrounded by caveats and qualifiers, just in case the other scenario proves to be true.
This is not how stories like this usually play out.
Ordinarily, the popular papers, in particular, have a hunch about the culprit (and very often their hunches are right).
Not this time, however.
The press pack following the McCann case is apparently split into two camps, for and against the couple, with some reporters refusing to speak to those on the other side.
One tabloid editor is changing his mind on where guilt lies "on an hourly basis".
It's easy to see why.
Yesterday it was reported that the Portuguese police had found not just the odd DNA trace in the boot of the McCanns' hire car - rented weeks after Madeleine's disappearance - but substantial amounts of the child's hair and even bodily fluids.
Suddenly, an entire narrative assembles itself, built from leaked nuggets and speculative fragments, which runs as follows.
The McCanns had sedated their children so that they could have an undisturbed dinner with friends (hence the failure of the two younger McCann children to awake even during the loud chaos of the night of May 3).
They returned to find Madeleine dead.
Fearing their twins would be taken from them if they confessed the truth, they hid Madeleine's body, then hid it again in the spare wheel compartment of their rented car until finally burying it somewhere else.
(Where? The anti-McCann view even has an answer to this question. Portuguese police are reported to be planning to search the Our Lady of the Light church in Praia da Luz, where the McCanns prayed regularly and to which they were given the keys, so they might visit day or night. Detectives are said to be set on digging up an area around the church - including one cobbled street where roadworks were under way when Madeleine disappeared.)
It hangs together well enough until you start asking questions.
How could two people under constant media scrutiny possibly have carried out and hidden their daughter's body without being seen?
If they really had concealed a corpse in their car, wouldn't the smell have been obvious?
 How could two people unfamiliar with the local landscape have found an eventual hiding place that would still, months later, remain undiscovered?
Is it plausible to imagine that, in the moments after suffering the trauma of a dead child, two people could have constructed such an elaborate cover-up plan, executed it coolly and remained steady ever since?
Could anybody maintain this front, a global lie, for so long without cracking?
Arguments like that are going on everywhere, in pubs or the train to work, as well as in newsrooms around the world.
The McCanns must hate it but they cannot be surprised by it.
For wholly understandable reasons, they chose to make the loss of their daughter public property, to recruit the media to their cause.
So now we are like folk gathered in the village square, offering our two-pennyworth on the mysterious events that have befallen one benighted family.
How will this story end?

That's what makes it so grimly compelling: none of us knows.

Until we do, basic justice demands that we presume the McCanns are wholly innocent.

Common decency demands the same.

For if they are eventually found guilty, there will be plenty of time for condemnation.

But if they are innocent, to presume otherwise is to commit a second crime against people who have already suffered enough.

FOOTNOTE : We have come a long way since 2007. We now know the Campaign fund money is used to pay legal fees, to silence those who question the McCanns 'theory' of an abduction, for it can never be more, there is not a shred of evidence.

The McCanns have also chosen to live with people pointing the finger at them for it was they, and they alone who chose to have the case shelved and by refusing to co-operate in the investigation, not returning to carry out the police reconstruction they remain prime suspects in the disappearance/death of their daughter Madeleine. With or without a body!

Monday, January 16, 2012

#McCann : Lolita Maddie - Image Taken By Photographer Paul Grover . Grover, Well Known Photographer For Professional Images of Tony Blair .

Is this the same Paul Grover from REX FEATURES, "Britain's leading independent photographic press agency and picture library, supplying a daily service of news, celebrity, features, and stock photos to all national newspapers, magazines, TV, web and other media in the UK and in more than 30 countries worldwide"?

Or is it just a coincidence? The picture was posted at one of the several sites organized and promoted by a McCann special support group, a secret organization which has members in more than 25 countries.

The site was set up on May 9th, just six days after Madeleine McCann disappeared.

WikiLeaks cables: UK police 'developed' evidence against McCanns

British ambassador's reported comments to US counterpart offer insight into role of UK police in 2007 investigation

Madeleine McCann on the day she disappeared
Madeleine McCann is mentioned twice in the WikiLeaks cables. Photograph: PA
British police helped to "develop evidence" against Madeleine McCann's parents as they were investigated by Portuguese police as formal suspects in the disappearance of their daughter, the US ambassador to Portugal was told by his British counterpart in September 2007.

The meeting between US ambassador Al Hoffman and the British ambassador, Alexander Wykeham Ellis, took place a fortnight after Kate and Gerry McCann were formally declared arguidos, or suspects, by Portuguese police. The McCanns have said that there was "absolutely no evidence to implicate them in Madeleine's disappearance whatsoever."

In a diplomatic cable marked confidential, the US ambassador reported: "Without delving into the details of the case, Ellis admitted that the British police had developed the current evidence against the McCann parents, and he stressed that authorities from both countries were working co-operatively."

The comments attributed to the ambassador appear to contradict the widespread perception at the time that Portuguese investigators were the driving force behind the treatment of the McCanns as suspects in the case.

The disclosure comes as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange returns to court in an attempt to secure bail following his arrest last week at the request of Swedish authorities who want to interview him over allegations of sexual assault. A number of other cables released by the whistleblowers' website shed new light on aspects of the financial crisis. Revelations include:

 "Madeleine McCann's disappearance in the south of Portugal in May 2007 has generated international media attention with controversy surrounding the Portuguese-led police investigation and the actions of Madeleine's parents."

He reported that his British counterpart thought "that the media frenzy was to be expected and was acceptable as long as government officials keep their comments behind closed doors".

It was not until 21 July 2008 that the Portuguese authorities shelved their investigation and lifted the arguido status of the McCanns.

Responding to the contents of the cable, a spokesman for the McCanns told the Guardian: "This is an entirely historic note that is more than three years old. Subsequently, Kate and Gerry had their arguido status lifted, with the Portuguese authorities making it perfectly clear that there was absolutely no evidence to implicate them in Madeleine's disappearance whatsoever.

"To this day, they continue to work tirelessly on the search for their daughter, co-operating when appropriate with both the Portuguese and British authorities."

British authorities had substantial involvement in the investigation launched after Madeleine disappeared in May 2007 from the holiday apartment where the McCanns had left their three children in bed before joining friends at a nearby restaurant in the Algarve village of Praia da Luz.

At least one British sniffer dog was used in the investigation and, according to reports, was said to have picked up the scent of a dead body in the apartment.

In 2008, when a dossier detailing investigations by Portuguese police was made public, it emerged British scientists had warned that DNA tests on a sample from the McCanns' holiday hire car were inconclusive days before they were made suspects. It is known that the Forensic Science Service analysed material sent to Britain by Portuguese police.

A spokesman for Leicestershire police said their involvement in the investigation was limited to co-ordinating UK-based inquiries on behalf of the Portuguese authorities.

Monday, January 9, 2012

#McCann :The Top Ten World's Worst Photofits

World's worst Efit 1
Police in Bolivia have been ridiculed online all this week after releasing what’s been dubbed the world’s worst e-fit picture to help solve an eight-month-old murder case.
Despite the amateurish sketch, detectives had the last laugh after arresting a suspect.
Here below we list nine other bizarre photo fits.
1. Norfolk police appeared to be in the hunt for an alien when they released this image in 2006 of a suspected burglar.
2. South Wales police issued this not particularly useful photo-fit of a robbery suspect last year

3. With laws preventing them from showing a picture of the 16-year-old they were hunting in connection to a burglary, police in New Zealand had the bright idea of circulating a picture of Cracker star Robbie Coltrane, who they claimed the suspect resembled.
4. This picture issued by Atlanta police hunting for a murdering truck driver appears to show housewives favourite Des Lynam sporting a chimney brush.

5. Portuguese police distributed this rather abstract 'egg' e-fit during the hunt for missing British youngster Madeleine McCann.

6. This tragic TV news report is rendered rather less serious by a mug shot mix-up of epic proportions


Saturday, January 7, 2012

The mystery over the ‘christening weekend’

Source : Jill Havern Forum

On Sunday 15th July, Michael Wright’s two children, Patrick and Katie, were christened - or ‘baptised’ – at Skipton. It is known that Dr Gerry McCann and Dr Kate McCann attended, flying into England on different days. What is not 100% certain is whether Michael Wright attended his own daughter’s christening.

By way of background, the Wrights are Roman Catholics. Nearly always, practising Roman Catholics baptise, or ‘christen’, their children, at a young age. It is a key Roman Catholic sacrament and is thought by Roman Catholics to assure eternal salvation. It is not the same as ‘conformation’. This occurs when children receive a period of training in the essentials of the faith, and then attend a ceremony to confirm their adherence to the faith. It is common practice in Roman Catholicism, in the Church of England, and in the Jewish religion, where the ceremony is known as a ‘barmitzvah’. Christening children at the age of 12 and 10 (the ages of Patrick and Katie) is unusual. Most recently it has become a common practice for parents of unchristened children to adopt to help ensure that their children are given a better chance of attending a good Roman Catholic secondary school.

Let us look at the official synopsis of Michael Wright’s statement to the Portuguese police. The translation says: “12th to 13th July, he returned with Kate and the twins to attend the christening of his own children while Gerry was already in the U.K. The McCanns returned to Portugal on 15th July”.

On the face of this statement, Michael Wright flew from England on 12th July to Praia da Luz to ‘collect’ Dr Kate McCann, and then returned back from Praia da Luz to Skipton the following day, together with Dr Kate McCann, for the family christening. Ostensibly, he then remained in England. Dr Gerry McCann had already returned to England ahead - see below.

Let us begin looking at the events of this weekend by staring with the ‘reconstruction’ event that took place on Wednesday 11 July in Praia da Luz, where Goncalo Amaral’s team of detectives arranged a face-to-face meeting between suspect Robert Murat and the three friends of the McCanns who claim to have seen him acting suspiciously outside the Ocean Club the night that Madeleine ‘disappeared’. The ‘Daily Mirror’ reported it like this: “The extraordinary face-to-face meeting on July 11 was organised by officers trying to discover who is telling the truth in the 85-day long case in which [Robert Murat is the only formal suspect” ... -19528076

Dr Gerry McCann mentions this reconstruction event in his ‘Daily Blog’ for 11 July. Here it is in full (note, Dr McCann’s typing errors have been left just as they appear in the original):

“This morning got off to a bad start when we were called, even before the twins were awake, by a reputable press agency saying that a body had been found and asking if it was true. It is very disappointing that this person did not check out the source of this rumour before contacting our representatives. Such calls and rumours are distressing even though we know if it does not come through an official source not to place much emphasis on it.
The Portuguese police interviewed three of our friends again today, to clarify points in their initial statements. As most of you will know, there is a lot of misleading information being published, both in the press and on the internet, about the events leading up to Madeleine's disappearance and the criminal investigation. We would like to give more information, especially about inaccurate and hurtful reports, but cannot for fear of prejudicing any subsequent court proceedings. The Portuguese police have made it clear to us that all witnesses should not divulge or discuss
the information they have provided. Kate and I are, of course not party to all of the information coming into the inquiry for sound operational reasons. Similarly a lot of people have asked to learn more about Madeleines likes and dislikes. This is information which we have been advised not to distribute publicly because of the risk of it being used in potential extortion attempts. The arrests recently in The Netherlands and Spain show that such information could be used negatively in the wrong hands”.

Now let us turn to his blog entry for the following day:

“It is ten weeks since Madeleine was abducted and every day has been incredibly hard for our family. No child should be separated from their family in such circumstances. The overwhelming messages of support, thoughts and prayers really help us stay strong. Somebody, somewhere knows where Madeleine is and it may take a single phone call for her to be found. We will not give up searching for her. I came to London today to meet with the British police and will go to the Child Exploitaion and Online Protection Centre tomorrow to learn more about their role. As I have said previously we want to work closely with the police and child welfare organisations to help us keep awareness of Madeleines and other childrens disappearance high.
I was also invited to attend the National Police Federation Annual Bravery awards tonight. The work of the police is often taken for granted until you really need them. It was a humbling experience to see and meet so many officers who have shown such outstanding bravery in the line of duty and protecting us all. It was a fantastic opportunity to thank officers from all over the country who have been involved with the investigation to find Madeleine. The vast majority of those that I managed to speak to are, like us, very optimistic that we will find Madeleine safe and well”.

So Dr Gerry McCann travelled on his own to England, and met ‘British police’ for a purpose which he does not tell us about, though a later report in the ‘Daily Telegraph’ said he had visited ‘British police connected with the investigation’. Nor does he say who these ‘British police’ were. Now we come to his blog for Friday 13th July:

“Spent a large part of the day at the Child Exploitation and Online Protecetion (CEOP) headquarters in London. The work they are doing in the prevention and detection of child exploitation is fantastic and I have no doubt they are world leaders in many aspects of their work. The statistics of child abduction in the UK, both attempted and sucessful cases, are stagggering with over 1000 reported cases in 2003/4 and the figures show a year on year increase. The scale of the problem is much larger than Kate and I ever imagined and worryingly there does not appear to be reliable statistics for many countries in Europe. Clearly a lot of work has to be done to tackle this growing problem.
Kate and I believe that someone, somewhere knows something about Madleines abduction. The events of recent weeks and the high profile of Madeleine reassure us that when the key piece of information comes in, to any law enforcement agency, it will be treated seriously and fed into the inquiry quickly and actioned”.

Now for Dr Gerry McCann’s blog for the day of the christening (Friday 14th July):

“Kate, the twins and myself attended a family baptism today in Yorkshire where we stood as Godparents. At the end of the short service, which was lovely, prayers were said for Madeleine. It is the first time Kate has been to the UK since Madeleine disappeared but we wanted to support our family [sic] the same way they have supported us over the last ten weeks and it was great to see so many family members together. We have also taken a huge amount of strength from our faith and of course the messages of support and prayers for Madeleine from people of all faiths around the world”.

The following day - Sunday - he wrote:

“Travelled back to Portugal today on an early morning flight. It was heartening to see various posters of Madeleine up at all the check-in desks especially with the busy holiday season underway. The flight itself was quiet for Kate and I as the twins fell asleep shortly after take-off. My mum and sister have also come out to for a few days so we managed to see a lot of family this weekend”.

The ‘Craven Herald’s report on the ‘christening weekend’ confirmed: “The cardiologist also met with child abduction experts at the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre [CEOP] in London”.

Quite why Dr Gerry McCann should have travelled to England a day ahead of his wife is unclear. On Friday 13th July, he was a guest at a major police annual dinner, that of the Police Federation, held in London, and presumably spent the night in London before travelling up to meet his wife the following morning - Saturday - the morning of the actual christening.

Michael Wright is quite clear that he flew out to Portugal on Thursday 12th July, apparently solely with the intention of accompanying Dr Kate McCann and the twins the following day. He also says in his statement to the police: “I was aware of the hiring of the Renault Espace [he means ‘Scenic’]; I was collected from the airport by Kate in it on 12th July and drove the vehicle regularly in August and September”. No doubt an accompanying male was very important for a mother travelling on her own with twins and luggage. All the more reason why it is hard to explaining why Dr Gerry McCann went ahead on his own the day previous.

There has been a suggestion discussed on some Madeleine McCann forums that Michael Wright may not have returned to England on 13th July but stayed in Portugal.

It is said by some forum members that if Michael Wright did indeed stay in Portugal that weekend, he would have had a very good opportunity to collect Madeleine’s body from its original site after her ‘disappearance’ to what would no doubt become Madeleine’s final resting place. It is suggested that Michael Wright might have worked alone, or may have had help from another member of the McCanns’ family and group of friends. It is suggested that Michael Wright could easily have been driving the Renault Scenic around Portugal away from the glare of cameramen and nosey journalists. They would all have been hanging around Praia da Luz, waiting for the return of the McCanns.

But if we accept that Michael Wright did indeed travel back with Dr Kate McCann on Friday 13th, having met her at the airport the previous day, then all such speculation is futile.

For the record, the visit of the McCanns to the christening was described by the ‘Daily Telegraph’ in the following terms:

“The mother of missing Madeleine McCann made an emotional journey back to Britain at the weekend for the first time since her daughter was abducted in Portugal on May 3. Kate McCann, 38, of Rothley, Leics, has repeatedly said that she did not want to return home without the missing four-year-old, but made the trip back to attend a family christening. Yesterday on her return to Portugal, where the family are now based, she described the visit as ‘heart-breaking’ but important. ‘Saturday was an emotional day’, she said. Mrs McCann travelled to England with her two-year-old twins, Sean and Amelie, and was re-united with her husband Gerry, 39, who was in London meeting police involved in the investigation”.

Meanwhile the ‘Craven Herald’ on Friday 20th July offered the following account of the christening:

“THE parents of missing Madeleine McCann made a short trip to Skipton at the weekend. Kate and Gerry McCann attended the baptism of two of their godchildren on Saturday. Mr McCann had flown to Britain last Thursday [12th] to attend meetings with UK police officers and speak at the Police Federation's annual dinner. The cardiologist also met with child abduction experts at the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre in London. Mrs McCann travelled to North Yorkshire from Faro on Friday.

“The baptism of her godson, Patrick, and her husband's goddaughter, Katie, was at St Stephen's Church. They are the children of Kate's cousin, Anne-Marie Wright, who lives in Skipton. Mrs McCann said: ‘It was an emotional day. We were reunited with family to celebrate welcoming two children into the Catholic faith. Gerry and I wanted to be there, to take part and to support our godchildren on one of the most important days of their lives. But I am sure every mother in the world will understand that it was heart-breaking for me to be with our family, yet not be with Madeleine. Gerry and I have returned to Portugal to continue the search for our daughter Madeleine’.

The report added: “Two classmates from Carleton School have raised nearly £100 to help in the search for Madeleine McCann. Madison Hoyles and Hannah Eastham, both eight, held a stall selling buns, sweets and chocolate after school on Tuesday. The girls sold everything in 30 minutes and raised £99. It was Madison and Hannah's idea to raise money for missing Madeleine and their mums helped them organise the stall. Other parents baked cakes and buns for the girls to sell”.

Questions have been raised about when the baptism of the two children was arranged; some have suggested that it might have been arranged after Madeleine went ‘missing’, and perhaps for a purpose. There is however no evidence in the public domain as to when the baptism was arranged.

The McCanns in the villa - July onwards

The McCanns moved into their new villa outside Praia da Luz on Sunday 1 July 2007, staying there until 10 September when they rushed back to England just after being made ‘arguido’ and ‘arguida’. So when Dr Kate McCann collected Michael Wright from the airport on 12 July, presumably she took Michael Wright back with her to the villa, before flying to England the following day.

Despite claims that the villa was provided free of charge by a supporter, in fact, the McCanns were billed for €6000.00 for the period of 1 July to 31 August 2007 and then a further €1000.00 for the period 1 to 10 September. They had had to move because 1 July was the start of the Portuguese ‘high season’.

Altogether, then, €7000.00 - or over £5,000. The monthly rental was therefore nearly £2,500 - or £600 a week. The bill was made out direct to Dr Gerry and Dr Kate McCann, asking for full payment by bank transfer. No deposit was required.

When the Portuguese police went to the villa during July, they made some surprising finds, notably books on crimes and murders, plus confidential procedure manuals produced by the Child Exploitation and Online Ptotection Centre. During his time at the villa, Dr Gerry McCann also researched the ability of cadaver dogs - looking, it seems, for every weakness in their ability, searching for every possible reference to their evidence being unreliable.

‘Rubbish to the dumps’

Michael Wright mentions in the synopsis of his statement that he and the McCanns used a number of refuse sites for disposing of household rubbish. He mentions two rubbish disposal areas on the estate of the villa itself, first by the main entrance and other at the top of the hill. Outside the villa, he mentions other public rubbish disposal sites: a site on Cemetery Road, a site on a road above the Mark Warners complex, and a further site between the villa and the church. These visits to so many rubbish dump sites - five in all - seem odd given that we know there were several large disposal bins in Praia da Luz which they could have used.

Michael Wright and Dr Gerry McCann also claimed to have been taking garden rubbish regularly to the dumps. Quite what ‘gardening’ would have to be done in a rented Mediterranean villa, when you have the twins to look after and are running an intense, global campaign to ‘find Madeleine’, is unclear.

The unpleasant smell in the Renault Scenic

We looked at a few facts about the hire of the Renault Scenic above. Now we look at the following extract from Michael Wright’s synopsis: “On a number of occasions he [Michael Wright] noticed an unpleasant smell in the vehicle that he put down to the twins used nappies which had been discarded with the general waste. He was not aware of any spillages in the vehicle or anyone cleaning it”.

Given these statements, it is more than passing interest that a neighbour of the McCanns observed that ‘the back door of the Renault Scenic was left open all night long’ - presumably to get rid of the smell? It is hardly likely that the McCanns would have left ‘rotting meat’ and ‘dirty nappies’ in the back of the car for long enough for the smell to remain. Smells like that would be washed away with a good clean. The smell of human cadaverine, however, once it attaches to an item, can linger for years.

It is interesting that he uses the term ‘unpleasant smell’. As a mature adult, he would surely know what kind of smells resulted from ‘rotting meat’ and ‘dirty nappies’. But he doesn’t say the car smelt of either of these. He talks about an ‘unpleasant smell’ - and one that clearly lingered a long time, being noticed ‘on several occasions’. Incidentally though Michael Wright claims that he was not aware of the car ever being cleaned, there is evidence that another relative, Sandy Cameron, was seen cleaning it on several occasions. Clearly it was a most unusual smell. Could it have been the ‘smell of death’ detected by Eddie, the cadaver dog?

Quite why dirty nappies should smell that much is a puzzle anyway, assuming that the McCanns do whatever other parents do, namely, fold the nappies up and put them away in a sealable polythene bag ready for disposal.

It may reasonably asked why Michael Wright would mention the unpleasant smell at all. There are perhaps two reasons why he did so. Either he never knew that Madeleine’s body may have been transported in the Scenic, i.e. it was all done entirely without his knowledge, and he just honestly volunteered to the Portuguese police that there was a funny smell in the car, or he may have been actively helping the McCanns with the disposal of Madeleine’s body (or known about it and been involved in the subsequent cover-up) by putting up a false reason for the smell in the car - or, shall we say, a reason why Eddie the cadaver dog might ‘alert’ to a smell in that car.

One blogger wrote the following about the ‘smell of death’: “For anyone who has never smelt it, the smell of a decaying body can never be mistaken. It cannot and will never be mistaken for anything else. It is a sweet, sickly, gas like smell, nothing remotely like butchered rotting meat or dirty nappies. Anyone who has ever successfully used rodent poison under their floor will (a few days later) have had a taste of what a decaying whole body smells of. Once smelt, never forgotten”.

One suggestion made is that Dr Gerry McCann and Michael Wright may have deliberately placed dirty nappies and rotten meat in the car to modify and cover the cadaver scent.

Another possibility is simply that during the voluntary questioning of him, the British detective asked him if he noticed an unpleasant smell, agreed that he had done, and simply did his best by putting forward an explanation as to what might have been the cause of the bad smell.

The explanation for so many trips to the rubbish dump centred around garden waste. But as we saw above, the idea that the McCanns were able to find time for gardening seems unlikely, as of course was the necessity for Dr Kate McCann to wash the holiday curtains. What other holidaymakers need to wash their holiday curtains?

The final two visits in August and September

On 22 August Michael Wright flew out again to Praia da Luz, this time apparently to replace the Cameron family who had been helping Dr Gerry and Dr Kate McCann before then. He stayed until 1 September, when amongst other things he booked a large removal firm in Lagos for the McCanns, apparently using his own name. Michael Wright, according to his statement, says he arranged the removal before 1 September. That raises a very important issue. The McCanns maintained that they did not decide to return to England until they were both made ‘arguidos’ on 7th September. Why, then, had Michael Wright already ordered the removal van some two weeks before, at the end of August?

He then flew out once again on 7 September, apparently to help in cleaning the villa and arranging for Dr Gerry and Dr Kate McCann to return to England. The Camerons were already there, though, helping with the cleaning. And quite why such a large removal van proved necessary to take all the McCanns’ many belongings back to England is uncertain. The McCanns said at the time that they had to hire a removal van because they ‘had accumulated hundreds of letters from well-wishers and the twins had been sent loads of toys’. There also seemed to be a huge number of clothes that Dr Kate McCann was wearing, as she seemed to have at least one different outfit for every day of the holiday.

It is known that from 7th to 9th September Michael Wright helped to clean the villa where the McCanns were staying, ahead of the McCanns returning hastily to England on 10th September.

The Camerons and Eileen McCann had already left the previous day, 9 September.

Michael Wright speaks in his statement of how he helped the McCanns with their campaigning. He describes them both as ‘distraught’, explaining how they ‘crumbled and sobbed’ when not in official meetings or media conferences. He explained that he drove the Renault Scenic ‘regularly’ in August and September, using it for shopping, and for the removal of garden and other rubbish to the recycling area of Praia da Luz. Sometimes he drove the twins to the beach, he says, sometimes to the Kids’ Club, or when he was doing ‘runs to and from the airport’. At other times, he was the passenger while Dr Gerry McCann or Sandy Cameron drove the Scenic, which, confusingly, he called the ‘Espace’ in his statement.

When the McCanns returned to England on 10th September, one of the questions they faced was why they had left Portugal after vowing to stay in Portugal until Madeleine was found. This was one of the issues tackled in an article in the ‘Craven Herald’ on Friday 14th September; the McCanns were at pains to say they would return to Portugal if asked. Anne-Marie Wright was quoted in the ‘Craven Herald’. The article ran:

A SKIPTON relative of Kate and Gerry McCann has said the couple had nothing to do with their daughter's disappearance. Portuguese police have named Mr and Mrs McCann as official suspects after the disappearance of four-year-old Madeleine from an Algarve holiday resort in May...Kate's cousin, Skipton resident Anne-Marie Wright, said they were determined to clear their names if it came to it. She said: ‘They are innocent and had nothing to do with her disappearance’. Mrs Wright, whose husband Michael has spent time in Portugal helping with the search for Madeleine, said the situation was ‘heartbreaking…It's absolutely awful. It's the feeling of: can this be happening to our family?' We can't believe it's real. It's unbelievable’.” She said: "They will have the support of family and friends more available to them [by deciding to return to England]. They have said that if police want them to go back to Portugal they will co-operate and clear their names’."

Christmas with the Wrights in Skipton

It was Skipton where the McCanns went for Christmas 2007, according to a detailed report in the ‘Craven Herald’ on 28 December, headed ‘Relatives provide Christmas comfort for Maddy’s parents’:

“Kate and Gerry McCann were comforted by relatives in Skipton as they spent a heartbreaking first Christmas without their daughter, Madeleine. The couple…stayed with Kate's cousin, Anne-Marie Wright. After arriving in the town on Christmas Eve, they tried to give their two other children, twins Amelie and Sean, as normal a Christmas as possible…The two-year-olds also had Mrs Wright's children, Katie and Patrick, to play with during their break from their home in Leicestershire. The McCanns attended Christmas Day Mass with Mrs Wright and her husband Michael at St Stephen's Church, where Father Peter Dawber led a prayer for Madeleine's safe return. Kate returned to the church for mass again on Boxing Day. She wore a badge featuring a picture of her missing daughter and the caption: ‘Look into my eyes! Help find Madeleine’. Mrs Wright said: “They are a delightful family and Kate and Gerry are kind, caring, devoted parents. It makes you wonder why something as horrible as this can happen to such good people. Everyone in our family desperately wants Madeleine back with her Mum, Dad, brother and sister”. Kate released a message to the media in the hope her daughter would hear it over the Christmas period. In the recording, Kate said: ‘Madeleine, it's Mummy and Daddy here. Just know how much we love you, Madeleine. We all miss you so much. Sean and Amelie talk about you all the time every day. Our only Christmas wish is for you to be back with us again and we're hoping and praying that that will happen’.”

In this context, it is of interest to know that at around Christmas-time, Australian blogger who operates the ‘I On Global Trends’ website, stated that he had received many abusive e-mails from an ISP address [e-mail address] in Skipton? Similar abusive messages were received around the same time on the ‘Daily Mirror’s Madeleine McCann forum. One forum member painted a vivid picture of them all sitting round the Christmas tree in Skipton, furiously tapping out vile posts on their laptops.

Mike Hitchen said at the time: “It has been rather an interesting night. Earlier in the evening someone tried to hijack the Shout Box, by posting under the names of regular users, including myself. To give you an idea of how inexperienced these people are, they failed to realise that not only do I track ISP addresses, but when I post, I am specially marked as administrator. Hard to believe that someone posting from an ISP address that was traced to just north of Skipton, could possibly be someone posting from Sydney. Ah well, an abuse report has gone of to the both the Shout Box host, and to the offenders’ ISP.

Out to Portugal for the One Year Anniversary

Michael Wright went out to Praia da Luz for the one year ‘memorial service’ to Madeleine. Dr Gerry McCanns’ brother, John McCann, his sister Trish Cameron, and her husband Sandy Cameron also attended the service. A number of other relatives, all of whom live in Dr McCann’s home city of Glasgow, also travelled to Praia da Luz on behalf of Madeleine's parents to attend an evening service in the Algarve village's church of Our Lady of Light (]


On the face of it, many people would suggest that what we have here is no more than a close relative of the McCanns doing all that he practically could to help his relatives who were in acute distress.

He spent part or all of 34 days in Praia da Luz between 5th May and 1st September included. His wife went out there twice. He actively helped with the campaigning and helped out with family matters like taking the children to the beach.

If the christening/baptism had been arranged before Madeleine ‘disappeared’ on 3rd May, and assuming that we are right in thinking that Michael Wright flew out on 12 July to accompany Dr Kate McCann and the twins back to England to attend that event, there is nothing sinister or which requires further explanation about that event.

Points for concern include:

a) the swiftness of his departure to Praia da Luz

b) why he apparently took no action over the report of ‘George B’ seeing a man with a child early on the morning of 4th May

c) what he and Dr Gerry McCann were doing texting people on the beach on 7th May

d) the connection (if any) between him and the crisis management/counselling company, CCP, that was despatched immediately to Praia da Luz

e) why there seemed to have been so much rubbish disposal during his time there

f) whether he was aware of the true cause of the ‘unpleasant smell’ in the car.

Madeleine McCann: The role of Michael Wright

Madeleine McCann: The role of Michael Wright
This article looks at the role of Michael Wright, married to a cousin of Dr Kate McCann, following the ‘disappearance’ of Madeleine McCann.


Michael Wright did not make a formal statement to the Portuguese police until 16th April 2008, nearly a year after Madeleine ‘disappeared’.

Michael Terence Wright, born 8 May 1963, therefore now aged 45, is married to Anne-Marie, who is a cousin of Dr Kate McCann. It is understood that he was military-trained and his occupation is believed to be that of a partner in an I.T. company. He’s also said to be an amateur car enthusiast, particularly
keen on taking cars apart and putting them back together. They have two children, Katie and Patrick, aged 11 and 13.

According to his statement to Portuguese police, he had known Anne-Marie since he was 8 years old when, she and Dr Kate McCann used to holiday on Isle of Man, which is where Michael Wright lived. He had known Dr Gerry McCann since 1997, when he started going out with Kate.

Michael Wright and his wife and the McCanns used to meet up from time to time, mostly at family events, once in 2006 and once in February 2007. Their families were close and stayed together in each others’ houses. Michael Wright and his wife had apparently been planning a holiday in the U.K. for June 2007.

The first visit to Praia da Luz

He states in his statement to the Portuguese police that he received a ’phone call from his wife Anne-Marie’s mother around 11.00am on Thursday 3rd May, the date that Madeleine ‘disappeared’. That call from his wife’s mother, he said, informed him that ‘Madeleine had been taken from her bed’. That confirms that the McCanns were ’phoning round the relatives very early indeed, firmly implanting in them, even within the first hour after Madeleine was reported ‘missing’, the idea that Madeleine had been abducted.

He then says he spoke to Dr Kate McCann the following morning (4th May) between 10.00am and 11.00am in order to ‘arrange getting Dr Kate McCanns’ parents to Portugal’. Dr Kate McCann was apparently saying that she wanted her mother or both of her parents to join her in Praia da Luz.

Michael Wright (though incorrectly referred to in the report as Michael Healy), was quoted in one newspaper on 4th May as follows:

“Madeleine's uncle, Michael Wright, speaking from her grandparents' home in Liverpool, said: “They are all in a hell of a state. Everyone has been up all night. I spoke to Gerry and he wants as much publicity as possible if it helps”.

We know however that during the very early hours of 4th May, Michael Wright had already taken Aunt Nora to Liverpool (she had been staying with him at Skipton), and that Mrs Susan Healy (Dr Kate McCann’s mother) and Nora were already en route to Faro. In fact they had probably arrived there by mid or late morning on 4th May. If Michael Wright spoke to Dr Kate McCann at all at that time (around 10am to 11am on 4th May), it must surely have been simply to tell her that Nora and her mother they were on their way, or even to ask if they had arrived, rather than to ‘arrange getting Dr Kate McCanns’ parents to Portugal’.

Looking at the ’phone records of Dr Gerry and Kate McCann that the Portuguese police have now disclosed, and taking into account the evidence of Dr Kate McCann’s mother, Mrs Susan Healy, it seems that Dr Gerry McCann was the first to make contact with her, in the now-famous ’phone call when he screamed hysterically down the ’phone: ‘There’s been a disaster, there’s been a disaster”. The bemused Susan Healy thought there had been some kind of serious car accident. It looks as though Dr Kate McCann made her telephone call to her mother at around 00.45am on the morning of the 4th. No doubt the pair of them would then have discussed arrangements as to who was to come over to Portugal. And without doubt, the urgent necessity for Michael Wright to come over was discussed. As we shall see, though Dr Gerry McCann mentions his other relatives in his blog, he is curiously silent about the role of Michael Wright, though he was to play a major role over in Praia da Luz between May and September 2007.

So, we have learned that on Friday 4th May, between 10.00 and 11.00am, Michael Wright spoke to Dr Kate McCann, who told him that she wanted her parents to come to Portugal. By then, it appeared that he was already in Liverpool. He went to Portugal on 5th May and stayed to 11th May, staying close by the McCanns in their new Ocean Club apartment (they had had to move from Apartment 5A). Clearly, Michael Wright was important and Dr Gerry McCann wanted him right there by his side - immediately. Throughout - for example when apparently going on a mission to chaperon Kate back to England for the christening/baptism of a friend, he seems to have acted as a ‘trusted lieutenant’.

By this time, Dr Gerry and Dr Kate McCann were then accommodated in the new ‘replacement’ apartment on first floor of ‘Building Four’ - believed to be Apartment 5D, which had been the Paynes’ apartment. Michael Wright is believed to have stayed on the floor above the McCanns. Later, it seems that the McCanns were moved by Mark Warners to another apartment in the Ocean Club complex - plus they were given an entirely separate apartment by Mark Warners so that they could run an office from which to operate their campaign to ‘find Madeleine’.

Soon after Michael Wright went to Portugal, his eldest daughter appeared on the Beebo website, writing about going to babysit her half-sister and brother as her Dad had gone to Portugal. If this was a true posting, it seems that Michael Wright may have three children, not just the two that were christened/baptised in July - see below.

The pizza girl

During this time, on 6th May, Michael Wright says he met a girl from Liverpool. He says he bought a large quantity of pizzas from a ‘pizza shack’ on the beach of Praia da Luz; the girl serving the pizzas was from Liverpool. She apparently told him that her father, known as ‘George B’, had seen a man carrying child during the very early hours of 4th May in the resort, the day after Madeleine ‘went missing’. Michael Wright apparently didn’t know if ‘George’ had been spoken to by authorities.

This possible ‘sighting’ of Madeleine was for some reason never mentioned by the McCanns, although they many times referred to the ever-changing and unreliable claimed sighting by Jane Tanner, and to another, at around 10.00pm on the evening of 3rd May, by a man from Ireland, Martin Smith.

A number of questions have been raised about this ‘sighting’ of ‘George B’. For example, did ‘George B’ report this ‘sighting’ to the Portuguese police? If so, it should of course be in the police files. If it wasn’t reported, why not? As Michael Wright was advised by the girl of this ‘sighting’, did he run and tell the McCanns? - and did the McCanns then contact the police?

Let us look at this another way. Suppose you're out there helping your close relations Kate and Gerry after the tragic abduction of their daughter. You go down to the beach on Sunday - just three days later - and go and get some pizzas. The girl there tells you that her father saw someone carrying a young girl on the night of 3rd/4th May. So - what do you do? You might, for example: (a) immediately ’phone Kate and Gerry to and tell them of the lead, or (b) contact the Portuguese police immediately, or (c) contact the UK Police immediately, or (d) ask the girl to make contact with the father so you can speak to him? But - no. Apparently Michael Wright does none of these things. He did nothing and apparently only mentions it to the police months later.

Who were Gerry McCann and Michael Wright texting on the beach on 7th May?

According to a Portuguese TV report still available to view at:, a press photographer captured pictures of Dr Gerry McCann on the beach at Praia da Luz, in the company of Michael Wright, texting on a mobile ’phone. The photograph was of potential importance because its date and time would identify a particular text message. It appears that the Portuguese police know who the message was sent to, having been able to check Dr McCann’s SMS text messages sent that day. It is thought that the photo was taken on 7th May, though the TV programme was not transmitted until 9th May.

The Telecinco TV programme ‘Esta Pasando’ was sent the images. At first sight, the photos appears normal. They show Dr Gerry McCann, apparently with Michael Wright, on the beach close to the church in Praia da Luz. Dr Gerry McCann is clearly texting on a mobile ’phone.

Michael Wright’s second visit to Praia da Luz: 14th May to 18th May

In his statement to the police, Michael Wright says that his second visit to Portugal was from 14th May to 18th May. He had spent just a couple of full days in England (Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th May). One slight mystery about this visit is whether or not his wife was with him. It appears that she wasn’t.

For on 17th May 2007, the ‘Craven Herald’ reported: “Mrs Wright's husband, Michael, then drove another relative to join Madeleine's grandparents in Liverpool and then went out to Portugal [on 14th May] to help with the search. He is still in the Algarve and is keeping his wife and children informed of developments in the investigation and how the McCann family are bearing up”.
[size=16]Earlier, on Monday 14th May, the Craven Herald had carried the following report:

“Two specialist trauma counsellors from Skipton have flown out to Portugal to help the devastated parents of missing four-year-old Madeleine McCann. Consultants Alan Pike and Martin Alderton from the Centre for Crisis Psychology (CCP), based at Broughton Hall, have been by the side of Gerry and Kate McCann since their daughter Madeleine was abducted…The two experts were appointed by Mark Warner, the company which manages the resort, to assist Mr and Mrs McCann, both 38, on how best to deal with the stress and trauma of their terrible ordeal…

“Mr Pike, who is leading the team, flew over to the resort with Mark Warner managing director, David Hopkins, the day after Madeleine disappeared. Mr Alderton, who has counselled those affected by major disasters across the country, arrived the following day. A spokesman for Mark Warner said: ‘The Centre for Crisis Psychology (CCP) came highly recommended by industry partners and have been known to us for some time. Their experience in dealing with a variety of incidents is second to none’.

“Staff from the Skipton centre also visited Mark Warner's head office in London to offer counselling to employees last Wednesday. A spokesman for the Skipton centre said: ‘We are working with Mark Warner and cannot discuss any information because of commercial confidentiality. We have got two trauma consultants working on the incident. Everyone all over the country has been gripped, it is a very difficult case’. Mr Pike's experience in trauma work includes domestic violence and abuse, child abuse, emergency planning and assessment, and adoption. Since joining CCP in 2004, he has been involved in consulting with companies following road traffic accidents, personal attacks, terrorist bombings, shootings, robberies, drowning and staff bereavement. Mr Alderton provided clinical support following the 2003 Manchester motorway minibus crash in which seven people died”.

That was a very heavy degree of involvement from this Skipton-based group from a very early stage. On 4th May, both Mark Warner’s managing director, David Hopkins, and Alan Pike, flew out to Praia da Luz. An unspecified number of Mark Warners’ staff were ‘counselled’ at Mark Warners HQ. Already, it was clear that this was no ordinary case. The ‘Craven Herald’ added for good measure: “The focus has shifted from a local search for Madeleine to an international child abduction inquiry, amid suggestions she may have been taken out of Portugal”.

From this report we may deduce that, already, Skipton was very close to the nerve centre of the operation to support the McCanns. The company CCP appears to have been deployed in the past by Richard Branson, who of course has strongly and financially back the McCanns, and who also is or was the President of the ‘UK Citizens Arrested Abroad Committee.

It would be surprising indeed if there was not a close connection already between Michael Wright and the Directors of this hugely influential crisis management company, CCP, based, like the Wrights, in Skipton.

On Friday 18th May, the ‘Craven Herald’ reported: “THE distraught Skipton relations of abducted four-year-old Madeleine McCann have urged everyone, especially holidaymakers, to do everything in their power to help bring her home…Mrs Wright said the little girl's abduction had rocked the whole family.

She said she had last seen Madeleine in February when she, her Mum Kate, Dad Gerry and two-year-old twin siblings, Amelie and Sean, came to stay in Skipton from their home in Leicestershire. Mrs Wright said: "We had a lovely time with them, and the children all get on particularly well. Our children, Katie and Patrick, love Madeleine, Sean and Amelie. We went to Aireville Park, went swimming, went to Hesketh Farm Park, and walked along the canal towpath to look at the Rosie and Jim barge. Madeleine is a big Rosie and Jim fan”. The Wright family first heard of Madeleine's disappearance in the early hours of Friday May 4, when Mrs Wright's Mum, Sheila Cowell, called with the news. Mrs Wright's husband, Michael, then drove another relative [Aunt Nora] to join Madeleine's grandparents in Liverpool and then went out to Portugal to help with the search. Mr Wright is still in the Algarve and is keeping his wife and children informed of developments in the investigation and how Mr and Mrs McCann are coping. Mrs Wright said: ‘It's all been very emotional and upsetting. Some days he said they are really focused and coping and getting things done and other days they are devastated’.

“Mrs Wright said the family was trying to spread the word about Madeleine's abduction as far and wide as possible and urged people to go to the website to print off posters. She said: ‘It would be particularly useful to expand the reach of the publicity to other countries in Europe and North Africa. We are asking people to think of contacts they may have who would be able to display the poster in areas accessed by the public. Prime locations would be banking halls, post offices, ATM locations, large retail outlets such as garages and supermarkets, public transport, trains, buses, taxis etc.’

“She said she had spoken to Mrs McCann on the ’phone on Sunday [13th May]: ‘It was just really difficult and the conversation you don't want to ever have with anybody. She just seemed very numb. I just asked how she was coping and talked to her about the massive support there is. Ever since this happened people have been coming up to me - there's a really strong feeling - and everybody has been saying their thoughts are with them’."

The day before, SKY TV also carried a report mentioning Michael Wright: “The family of Madeleine McCann has called for any ideas on how to find the four year old. Close relative Michael Wright thanked everyone involved in the campaign and hunt for Madeleine. ‘Gerry and Kate are taking strength from the support they are receiving around the world’, said Mr Wright. And he also called for anyone with any ideas on how to help in the search to get in touch via

“The family thanked the continuing support from British and Portuguese media and called on the rest of Europe to join the hunt. Mr Wright also thanked those who have pledged financial support to the Madeleine fund, including sporting celebrities and big businesses. There have been reports that officers are now searching for a red Ford van after a possible sighting of Madeleine in the southern suburbs of the capital Lisbon. It is exactly a fortnight since Madeleine was snatched from her bed in her parents' holiday apartment in the Algarve”.

On 20th May, ‘The Observer’ also filed this report which mentions Michael Wright:

“Operating out of a separate flat in the holiday block, 'Team McCann', an assembly of friends and relatives dedicated to keeping Madeleine's story in the public eye, has begun work on a series of worldwide appeals, as well as reading and answering thousands of letters and emails. Their most ambitious initiative last week was the launch of a website, which has received more than 75 million hits and over 30,000 messages in the past few days. Calum MacRae, a family friend and Director of the firm running the ‘Missing Madeleine’ site, said: 'We've had to take the message facility down because our server was struggling to cope.'

”The one setback has been an internet assault by opportunists who have registered more than 20 money-making websites - advertising everything from mobile phone ringtones to health insurance - with similar spellings to the official campaign site. Visitors who make a small typing error can find themselves redirected to advertising or pornography, an internet practice known as 'typosquatting'. One of Kate's relatives, Michael Wright, provided an insight into the feelings driving the family's determination not to allow Madeleine's case to slip from public view. After thanking the British and Portuguese press for their coverage, he told reporters on Thursday afternoon: 'Kate and Gerry are the leaders of the whole campaign. Their ability to remain positive and focus on what we can do rather than go to the dark places - that they perhaps visited in the early days - is where our focus is, and it drives us all on’.”

Anne-Marie Wright’s first visit to Portugal

Michael Wright’s third visit to Portugal was from 8th June to 13th June. This is referred to as Mrs Anne-Marie Wright’s ‘second visit’ to Portugal. Therefore she must have gone out to Portugal some time between 18th May and 8th June for her ‘first visit’.

Michael Wright’s third visit: 8th to 13th June

Michael Wright went a third time to Portugal from 8th to 13th June, this time with his wife, mainly it seems to look after the McCanns’ twins, Sean and Amelie, while Dr Gerry and Dr Kate McCann travelled to Morocco, allegedly to follow up a rash of ‘sightings’ there.

On 19th June, the ‘Craven Herald’ reported again, this time informing its readers: “Mrs Wright's husband, Michael, went out to Portugal only days after the youngster was snatched, to help support the McCanns. Mrs Wright has since been out to the Algarve twice and on the last occasion [8th to 13th June], she and her husband looked after Madeleine's brother and sister, two-year-old twins Sean and Amelie, while Kate and Gerry, Madeleine's Dad, journeyed to Morocco”.

On 20th June, the ‘Craven Herald’ reported on plans for a fund-raising event, as follows: “Balloon release will keep Madeleine in the headlines: SKIPTON will play its part in keeping alive the campaign to find missing four-year-old Madeleine McCann. Today (20th June) marks 50 days since the little girl was abducted during a family holiday in Praia da Luz in the Algarve, Portugal. At 50 destinations across the world, 50 balloons will be launched bearing labels and pictures of Madeleine in a bid to help find her. One of them is Skipton, where resident Anne-Marie Wright, who is the cousin of Madeleine's mum, Kate, has organised a balloon launch in the town. It will take place at 3.15pm at Water Street School - where Mrs Wright's son, Patrick, is a pupil…Skipton's Birthdays store has donated the balloons”. Mrs Wright has been out to Portugal with her husband to look after Madeleine's brother and sister, two-year-old twins Sean and Amelie, while Kate and Gerry, Madeleine's Dad, journeyed to Morocco. Mrs Wright said: ‘It was nice to be useful and to see the twins was lovely’.

“She said her cousin and her husband were emotionally up and down and tired from all the travelling around…she hoped people would turn up to help set the balloons free and said other primary schools or organisations could organise similar events”.

On 29th June the ‘Craven Herald’ reported on how the fund-raising event in Skipton had gone, as follows: “Balloons launched for Maddie: FIFTY balloons were released over Skipton in a bid to get missing four-year-old Madeleine McCann back to her family safe and well. The balloon launch, at Water Street School on Friday, marked 50 days since the little girl was snatched during a family holiday in Praia Da Luz in the Algarve, Portugal. At destinations around the world, balloons bearing a picture of Madeleine and the Crimestoppers number were released into the sky. Skipton woman Anne-Marie Wright is the cousin of Madeleine's mum, Kate, and organised the event at Water Street, where her son, Patrick, is a pupil. Her daughter, Katie, also read a short prayer. Mrs Wright said there had been a nice, quiet atmosphere at the event. She added: ‘The day was two-fold. We want to keep raising awareness and keep it in the public eye. Then there's the small chance that someone might find the balloon and have information to find Madeleine’. Mrs Wright has been out to Portugal twice since Madeleine went missing”.

It is known that Mrs Wright went out for the visit of 8th to 13th June 2007, but it is not known when the other visit was.

Michael Wright and the Renault Scenic

On 27th May, the day before Dr Gerry McCann and Dr Kate McCann travelled to Rome to receive a blessing from the Pope, Michael Wright became a joint named driver of the notorious Renault Scenic, in which Eddie the cadaver sniffer dog detected the ‘smell of death’ - human cadaverine - in the well of the car, where what was almost certainly a sample of Madeleine’s blood was also found.

There is some confusion about who were the ‘named drivers’ of the car. One report said it was the two McCanns plus Michael Wright. Another report said that Sandy Cameron, husband of Trish Cameron, was also a ‘named driver’, and that Dr Kate McCann was not. She is certainly on record as having driven the Renault Scenic, and we may safely assume therefore that she was a named driver.

A coincidence, which the Portuguese police checked out, was that another Michael Wright hired the Renault Scenic just two weeks earlier (from 8th to 15th May), together with another man named Brown. The Portuguese police traced both these men to Milton Keynes and decided that they had nothing to do with the McCann family. They both apparently lived in the same street in Milton Keynes. ‘Our’ Michael Wright was born in 1963, making him 44 years old in 2007. The ‘other’, Milton Keynes, Michael Wright, was born in 1936, making him 71 last year. He was not interviewed by the Portuguese police. But the records do show that the car was paid for by credit card at the time of collection, 8th May, and returned on 15th May. This may not have any significance, but the General Medical Council (GMC) register has registered doctors whose names, initials, registration dates and ages would all fit the details of the hirers of the car, plus those other names qualified at the same place. Whether the other Michael Wright and Brown are those same doctors as are on the GMC register has not yet been checked.

The car milometer reading on 27 May, the date the car was hired, was 3114
km. By the time the car milometer was read again on 23 September, the reading was 14443, meaning that in those four months or so, 11,332 km had been clocked up - just under 7,000 miles. [The milometer readings for intermediate dates were merely notional; for the record, these were: 03 Jun - 3864; 3 Jul - 5864; 2 Aug - 5865; 1 Sep - 5866]. The mileage per day was around 60 miles; around 420 a week.

It might be possible to check how and when the car was used by checking the credit card records of the McCanns and the others who were driving the Renault Scenic. But the British Home Office blocked the Portuguese police from having access to the McCanns’ credit card records - or anyone else’s - citing, no doubt, the right to privacy, the Data Protection Act and the Human Rights Act.


Source : Jill Havern Forum