Monday

Request from The Madeleine Foundation to hold Inquest into Maddie's disappearance


Dear Dr Costa

re: Holding of an Inquest into Madeleine McCann’s disappearance /death

I write to you on behalf of The Madeleine Foundation, a membership organisation in the United Kingdom dedicated primarily to keeping alive the issue of child neglect, which we feel lies at the very heart of the case of the ‘disappearance’ of Madeleine McCann. At the same time, I am pleased to enclose for your attention the booklet we have published this week, titled: “What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann? - 60 Reasons which suggest that she was not abducted”. It is not yet available in Portuguese.

We have examined the statement of the Portuguese Attorney-General, made in July this year, in which he announced that the investigation into Madeleine McCann’s disappearance/death will be ‘archived’, or shelved, pending new evidence becoming available. We have also seen translation of police documents and DVDs on the case released over the past few months by the Portuguese police.

It is our view, based on the evidence – and shared we understand with the former lead investigator in the case, Goncalo Amaral - that Madeleine died in Apartment 5A in Praia da Luz, and that the parents, together perhaps with some of their other friends who were with them in Portugal, have covered up the death and know what has happened to Madeleine’s body. According to the police reports and other indications, there is much evidence pointing that way. In summary, it includes:

a) the powerful evidence of the cadaver dogs, who located the smell of death, i.e. human cadaverine, in three or four locations in Apartment 5A, in the McCanns’ hired car, their Renault Scenic, on the clothes of Kate McCann and on the T-shirt of one of the children, and on the soft toy known as ‘Cuddle Cat’

b) evidence from DNA samples of body fluids which we understand, in summary, indicates that Madeleine died in apartment 5A but does not prove it

c) contradictory statements by the McCanns themselves and their friends about the events of 1st, 2nd and 3rd May, including various changes of story by the McCanns, and contradictions between what they, their friends and other witnesses say about the events of 1st to 3rd May 2007.

Goncalo Amaral in his book: ‘The Truth about a Lie” suggests that Madeleine died in Apartment 5A and that the McCanns faked the abduction. We think his conclusion is very possible.

Had these events occurred in the United Kingdom, an inquest would - sooner or later - be held. In the U.K., inquests can be held, even in the absence of a body, if there is some evidence that the person (or child) is dead. For example, an inquest was held a few years ago on a canoeist whose kayak was found drifting in the North Sea, though no body had been found.

We write therefore to enquire if there is any similar provision in Portuguese law. Our concern is that, now that the police investigation has in effect been suspended, there is a real risk that all the circumstances surrounding Madeleine McCann’s disappearance will not become known. An inquest provides an ideal opportunity for all relevant witnesses to be required to give their testimony, and be questioned. The sooner this takes place, the better, as witnesses’ recollections fade, and evidence is lost.

There is much evidence in this case, thousands of pages of it according to the Policia Judiciara report released in July and since. We believe it is vital that this evidence should be presented in a court as soon as possible.

Could you please advise us as soon as possible if there is any provision in the Portuguese judicial system for holding an inquest, or any other similar public enquiry into a person’s disappearance and possible death in Portugal - and also please inform us whether any moves have yet been made in Portugal to hold such an inquest or inquiry into Madeleine’s ‘disappearance’.

I await hearing from you.

Yours sincerely


Deborah Butler

Chairman, The Madeleine Foundation