Sunday 11 December 2016

Detective broke secrecy law, say McCanns

Sam Marsden in Lisbon

Published 16/01/2010 | 05:00

The parents of Madeleine McCann are to lodge a complaint with Portuguese police alleging that former detective Goncalo Amaral broke his country's strict judicial secrecy laws, their lawyer said.

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Kate and Gerry McCann are already embroiled in legal action against Mr Amaral in an attempt to ban his book which claims their daughter is dead.

Now the couple intends to accuse him formally of passing on information about the police investigation into Madeleine's disappearance before the case was closed -- a criminal offence in Portugal.

The McCanns' Portuguese lawyer, Isabel Duarte, alleged that Mr Amaral broke the law by sending a draft of his book to his publishers several months before the judicial secrecy period in the case was lifted in July 2008.

The lawyer also alleged that the ex-policeman released facts about the investigation that were not in the case files.

It will be for the Portuguese public prosecutor to decide whether the former detective has a case to answer.

Mr and Mrs McCann, both 41, flew to Portugal this week to hear Mr Amaral attempt to overturn their ban on his book, 'Maddie: The Truth Of The Lie'.

Allegations

The ex-policeman called a series of witnesses to support his allegations that Madeleine died in her family's Algarve holiday flat and that her parents faked her abduction.

Mr Amaral was the first head of the Portuguese police investigation into Madeleine's disappearance from Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007, shortly before her fourth birthday.

The McCanns say their main motive for taking the case is the fear that people will stop looking for their daughter if they think she is dead.

The hearing was adjourned until February 10.

The McCanns are also seeking €1.2m in compensation for defamation in separate proceedings against Mr Amaral.

Irish Independent

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