Police to review Madeleine inquiry after plea by parents
Published 13/05/2011 | 05:00
THE British government has agreed to a desperate request by Kate and Gerry McCann to review the handling of the investigation into the disappearance of their daughter Madeleine.
The couple also hopes that Mrs McCann's highly personal book about the child's disappearance, which went on sale this week, will revive efforts to find their daughter.
Last night, after a direct appeal to British Prime Minister David Cameron to investigate the handling of their daughter's disappearance, a Scotland Yard spokesman said: "We can confirm that the Metropolitan Police Service has agreed, at the request of the Home Secretary, to bring its particular expertise to the Madeleine McCann case."
Reacting to the news, Mr and Mrs McCann welcomed the "review" and thanked the government for committing such a significant resource as the Met to the search for their daughter.
"We welcome the government's response," they said. "This is clearly a step in the right direction. The expertise of the Metropolitan Police is renowned and we are reassured by our government's commitment to the search for Madeleine.
"We would like to thank Mr Cameron and the Home Secretary for committing such a significant resource.
"We would also like to thank the general public for the way in which they have continued to support our campaign to find Madeleine."
Earlier Mr McCann (42), told ITV1 show 'Lorraine': "We want people to read the book because it puts what's happened to us and what we are doing in context. But, more than anything, we want the public to get behind the search for Madeleine like they did in 2007."
Madeleine was three when she went missing from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in Portugal on May 3 2007, as her parents dined with friends nearby.
The official Portuguese inquiry into the disappearance was formally shelved in July 2008, although private detectives employed by the McCanns have continued the search.
Launching her book yesterday on her daughter's eighth birthday, Mrs McCann (43), said people were "understandably shocked" that the authorities had "essentially given up".
The McCanns, from Rothley, Leicestershire, have written to Mr Cameron asking for an "independent, transparent and comprehensive" review of all information about Madeleine's disappearance. The couple said they had "tried in vain" to secure a formal inquiry. They told Mr Cameron that "the benefits of pooling together different bits of evidence can be enormous".
A spokesman for Mr Cameron said he wanted to make sure his government did "all it can to help them".
The book, entitled simply 'Madeleine', has been Amazon.co.uk's top-selling book for several days and is attracting huge interest worldwide.
The couple hope that the publication of the work will prompt anyone who holds vital information about what happened to the child on May 3 2007 to come forward at last.