The McCanns' Fitness to Practice

Monday 13 July 2009
Fitness to Practise Committee,
General Medical Council,
St. James’s Buildings
79 Oxford Street
M1 6FQ.

Dear Sir/Madam

re: Fitness to Practise: Dr Gerald McCann and Dr Kate McCann (formerly Dr Kate Healy)

I write to bring to your attention a report about the above couple, both doctors, published in the Sunday People yesterday.

Dr Gerald McCann and Dr Kate McCann are the parents of Madeleine McCann, who was reported missing by her mother at around 10.00pm on Thursday 3 May 2007. The circumstances of her disappearance remain mysterious and as yet unsolved. They were made official suspects of involvement in their daughter’s disappearance in September 2007, a status that lasted until July 2008 when the Portuguese judicial authorities concluded that at that time there was insufficient evidence to charge them or anyone else with a crime against Madeleine.

Yesterday, the Sunday People published an article based on what they said was a 34-page libel writ served in Portugal against Goncalo Amaral. The McCanns and their advisers have already announced in the press that they intended to sue Mr Amaral for libel. Mr Amaral was the senior investigating officer in the case until he was removed from the investigation in controversial circumstances in October 2007. A month earlier, he was the man responsible for declaring the McCanns to be official suspects in their daughter’s disappearance.

The Sunday People says it has translated the libel writ from the Portuguese. The McCanns are claiming damages of £1 million from Mr Amaral. I wish to bring to your attention the medical and psychological condition of these two doctors, one of whom continues to practise, and both of whom we understand to be on the GMC Register.

The writ says of Dr Kate McCann that she is ‘deeply and seriously depressed”. The writ goes on to describe both of the McCanns as suffering from:

■permanent anxiety
■lack of appetite
■indefinable fear
In the writ, according to the Sunday People, the McCanns further describe both of themselves as:

■“totally destroyed”
■“irreparably damaged”, and
■“totally destroyed from a moral, social, ethical, emotional and family point of view”
The question that arises is whether either of these doctors is fit to practise or indeed to remain on the GMC Register, at least until these serious psychological problems, suggestive of mental illness, subside. We suggest that the appropriate committee of the GMC should consider (a) suspending them from the GMC until a psychiatrist deems that they have recovered from the above symptoms and (b) providing them with the expert psychiatric help and counselling that anyone exhibiting such severe symptoms should receive from the N.H.S. Presumably if the McCanns are exhibiting these symptoms there are reports available from their G.P. or a psychiatric specialist confirming those symptoms.

The other possibility of course, is that the McCanns are grossly exaggerating the extent of their depression or even lying about it, in order to make as much money as possible from Mr Amaral. If that were the case, there would definitely be a whole series of other questions about their fitness to remain in practice and remain on the GMC Register. Many videos and still images exist of the McCanns laughing and joking and appearing to be anything but severely depressed. That would suggest at least the possibility that they have deliberately exaggerated their sadness at and reaction to the loss of Madeleine in order to make as much money as possible from their proposed libel action.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to enclose a complimentary copy of a book written by Tony Bennett, titled: “What Really Happened to Madeleine McCann? - 60 reasons which suggest she was not abducted”. The book suggests that the McCanns’ claim that Madeleine was abducted runs counter to a mass of evidence. Its conclusion is precisely the same as that of Mr Amaral, whose book: ‘A Verdada de Mentira’, (“The Truth About A Lie”), explains that the evidence suggests that Madeleine McCann died in her parents’ apartment and that her body was subsequently hidden or otherwise disposed of. I should add at this point that a great many British people would categorically refuse to be treated by either of the McCanns because of what they have seen of them on TV, or read about them in newspaper articles, or in Mr Bennett’s booklet. For them, the issue is trust. They do not feel that they can trust the McCanns.

It is vital for both the medical profession and for the patient that patients have complete trust that their doctors are trustworthy. A clear example among many of why the McCanns cannot be trusted is that initially they claimed that an abductor had jemmied open the shutters to their apartment to gain entrance. Only when this was exposed as patently untrue did they then change their story, now claiming that the abductor must have entered by an open patio door and escaped with Madeleine out of a small window. These are matters we know have been brought to your attention by many others apart from us. We trust that you will take appropriate action with regard to the McCanns and their fitness to practise, taking account the contents of this letter and all the other evidence about their fitness to practice which is available to you.

Finally, I understand that there may be a form on which official complaints should be submitted. If such a form exists, please could you send me two copies of such a form, one for each doctor.

Yours sincerely,

Debbie Butler
The Madeleine Foundation
http://madeleinefoundation.org/main/200 ... l-council/
The 3 arguidos: Fitness to practice