Wednesday

Fight To Ban McCann Book Enters Final Day

8:44am UK, Wednesday February 10, 2010

Hannah Thomas-Peter, Lisbon

The McCanns are set to face the final day of proceedings in their fight to uphold a ban on a book claiming they covered up the death of their daughter Madeleine.

The McCanns have always strenuously denied allegations made against them

The book, called Maddie: The Truth Of The Lie, was written by the former lead investigator in the case Goncalo Amaral.

In it, he claims that Madeleine died in the McCann family's holiday apartment and the couple faked her abduction.

Today the court is expected to hear from two witnesses who were not available during proceedings held in January.

Click below to see live tweets from the court

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Eduardo Dimaso, chief editor of Correio da Manha newspaper and Luis Frois, from the company that made a documentary based on the book's claims, are likely to give evidence.

Lawyers for the McCanns and Mr Amaral will then make closing arguments.

A ruling on whether the existing temporary ban on the book is to be made permanent is expected by the end of this month.

Kate and Gerry McCann attended three days of hearings on this case in January.


Goncalo Amaral

They listened to witnesses called by Mr Amaral who backed up his version of events, including former police officers who questioned the McCanns' behaviour at the time of their daughter's disappearance.

Mr Amaral's lawyers have portrayed this legal action as an attack on the Portuguese constitution and freedom of speech.

The former policeman, who was removed from the Madeleine case after he criticised the British police, has vowed to take the case all the way to the European courts if he loses this fight to get his book published.

Speaking outside court at the end of last month's hearings, Kate McCann said listening to the allegations were difficult but nothing could be as bad as losing her daughter.

Madeleine was nearly four when she disappeared from her family's holiday apartment in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz in 2007.

Her parents were declared "arguidos" or formal suspects, in October that year, but that was lifted when the case was shelved the following summer.

The McCanns are seeking around £1m in damages for defamation from Mr Amaral in a separate case.

They strenuously deny the allegations made against them.

:: Follow live coverage of the day's proceedings in Lisbon on skynews.com


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