TORN APART BY HIS LIES
By Tom Worden
Kate and Gerry McCann are suing the police chief who bungled the investigation into their daughter's disappearance - and blamed them for her death - for £1million.
In a 36-page writ handed to the Sunday Mirror, they lay bare in painful detail how Gonçalo Amaral's accusations left them "totally destroyed" and caused them "irreparable" damage.
It also gives a harrowing insight into the day-to-day life in the McCann household as they struggle to cope without Madeleine.
The writ - which the Sunday Mirror has had translated from Portuguese - outlines how the couple both suffer from "permanent anxiety, insomnia, lack of appetite, irritability and an indefinable It also says Kate McCann is "in a deep and serious depression".
'Disgraced former police Amaral has pocketed £ 1million writing a lurid book and making documentary full of cruel about Madeliene and her And now they are suing him every penny of it.
He accuses them of accidentally killing their three-year-old daughter and then covering up her death.
Amaral, who was thrown off case after five months, repeatedly claimed Madeleine in the holiday apartment on Algarve. In his book The About The Lie he spouts his theory that the couple hid daughter's body.
The lawsuit also highlights fears for four-year-old twins and Amelie when they start later this year and begin to hear rumours that Madeleine is dead.
And it accuses Amaral of being a self-obsessed, manipulative money-grabber with no morals.
The couple, both 41, have hired Portuguese lawyer Isabel Duarte to sue Amaral for defamation and for breaching their human rights. Mrs Duarte, 54, said: "Somebody has to stop him and shut him up. He is a rich man now, earning millions from the distress of this family. We believe he has made up to 1.2million euros (£1million) from the book and the video. We want the court to punish him by taking at least that much from him."
The McCanns have a good case for defamation as they have already been cleared by Portugal's Attorney General. The case will go to trial in Lisbon next summer and Amaral, 49, could force the McCanns to take the stand. Madeleine is named with Kate and Gerry and the twins as a complainant in the lawsuit, lodged on June 24.
The McCanns, both doctors from Rothley, Leics, claim Amaral's repeated insistence that their daughter is dead has stopped people looking for her. The lawsuit states: "Madeleine has been deprived of the possibility of a fair and adequate investigation into her disappearance, putting her moral and physical integrity at serious risk."
It says Gerry and Kate have been "totally destroyed from a moral, social, ethical, emotional and family point of view, beyond the pain that the absence of their eldest daughter causes them".
The couple want a minimum of £430,000 in damages for Madeleine, which will be used to keep the search for her going. They also want a minimum of £215,000 each for them, and another £86,000 each for the twins. It is thought any money they get will go to the Maddie fund.
Amaral's book has sold around 330,000 copies worldwide. The fatherof-three has become a celeb in Portugal, and has a new Jaguar.
The McCanns say his "sole objectives" in writing the book were "to earn a lot of money", using "lies". It says the book and his 50-minute documentary, which has been shown twice on Portuguese TV, are "manipulative, perverse, false, destructive, defamatory, deeply damaging and therefore illegal".
Amaral was in charge of the 30 detectives looking for Madeleine after she vanished in May 2007 on a family holiday in Praia da Luz.
He was largely responsible for making the McCanns "arguidos" - suspects - four months after Madeleine vanished. But he was kicked off the case in October 2007 days after the Sunday Mirror revealed he was working as little as four hours a day and was enjoying long, boozy lunches.
He was removed from the case on his 48th birthday. Amaral took early retirement shortly afterwards, ending 27 years on the force.
He began writing his book, promoting it by travelling around Europe giving newspaper interviews.
It went on sale in a blaze of publicity in July last year - three days after the McCanns' "arguido" status was removed. Earlier this month Amaral was charged with torturing a witness during a separate missing child case. He faces jail if convicted.
WHAT THEY ARE DEMANDING
£430,000 damages for Madeleine which will be used to continue the search for her.
£215,000 for each parent for the emotional distress the book has caused them. They say they suffer 'permanent anxiety, insomnia, lack of appetite, irritability and an indefinable fear'. The writ also says Kate McCann is 'steeped in a deep and serious depression'.
£86,000 for each of their twins Sean and Amelie, who could hear his allegations when they start school in September.
HOW HE MADE HIS MONEY
£500,000 from the book which has sold 180,000 copies in Portugal alone.
£430,000 from the extra 150,000 books which have been sold in Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Holland.
£100,000 for a TV documentary watched by one in five people in Portugal - 75,000 copies have sold on DVD.
Source: Sunday Mirror
Discussion at the 3 arguidos: MIRROR: TORN APART BY HIS LIES
Read Gonçalo Amaral's book (being translated into English) here to see what all the fuss is about
How the McCanns have made their money
Maddie: A good marketing ploy
Sunday Mirror article deleted