Chapter 24: Unhelpful relatives

Some time ago many of us tried to make a list of all the blatant lies and untruths said by, or on behalf of, the McCanns and the Tapas 7. So long was the list that eventually it had to go to print in shortened form.

Here I have tried to pinpoint things said by relatives and friends, who perhaps thought they were being supportive and helpful, but which, and who, turned out not to be.

Some of the things said either damaged the “official story” as it was at the time - because as we know even that has changed with the seasons - or caused researchers to focus on the point being made.

All the stories told to the press by close relatives and friends about broken, smashed, forced, and ’jimmied - or whatever the word is . . “ shutters, and doors hanging off hinges are directly traceable back to the McCanns. The sources concerned had clearly been given the same story, and urged to contact the press. Some degree of embellishment may be expected, but the overall story from at least five sources is remarkably consistent.

The fact that the British press and media put out those stories, across the country, at the same time that live video was being streamed on news channels showing a hapless Scenes of Crime officer attempting to find a mark on obviously Un-smashed, -jimmied, -forced, or -broken shutters was the starting point for scepticism for many of us.

1st prize Uncle John McCann - Maddy’s ‘jammies
Pride of place must surely go to Uncle John.
According to John McCann: "Kate dressed Amelie in her sister's pyjamas and the baby said: 'Maddy's jammies. Where is Maddy?'
Even the devout Kate (see later) must cringe when she reads that.
Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings’ Matthew 21:16
In two words Amelie demonstrated
a) The pyjamas were Madeleine’s - and logically therefore Madeleine was not wearing them when she ‘disappeared’. The implications of this are surely obvious.
b) There were no duplicate pyjamas owned and worn by Amelie, as the McCanns mendaciously and unconvincingly claimed later, when they realised they had been caught out having shown Madeleine’s pyjamas in public.
b) Madeleine was known as Maddy within the family, despite the subsequent mendacious insistence by Kate that this contraction was an invention of the press. Amelie neatly corroborates everything the world already knew.
Not bad for 2 words from a 2 year old ! Many thanks to Uncle John for telling the world.
2nd Susan Healy - Kate’s mother - medication
The whole history of denials that the children had been given any sedatives or other drugs, or whether they had been sedated by anyone else has been researched in detail and reported elsewhere.
Over four years the McCanns’ story moved from initial recognition and acceptance, to outright denial, back to implied acceptance of possibility, then strenuous resumed denials, using the words “ludicrous, nonsense, no suggestion”, and then finally to a renewed acceptance of the possibility, followed by public statements that it MUST have happened. (though one came from the risible David Edgar, and so may be cheerful ignored)

Kate’s mother was more succinct . ’They took Calpol
3rd Clarence Mitchell - wristwatches and mobile phones
Mitchell deserves a special study. His ability to invent stories, to lie, to ‘spin’, and otherwise to distort the truth is in a class of its own. Pages, if not volumes, of his mendacious howlers have been documented, and it quickly became normal for anyone with genuine interest in the case to start by believing the exact opposite of whatever he had said - until the contrary could be proved. Mostly it couldn’t.

It will be interesting to see if work such as his is included in any attempt to clamp down on “Fake News”

One of Clarence Mitchell’s more notorious outright falsehoods was to the effect that none of the group had watches or mobile phones with them, and that therefore the exact times they gave were not to be taken as wholly accurate. Unfortunately for him he said this in April 2008, nearly a year after the Tapas7 group had drawn up two separate and detailed time lines on the night, and a third mutually agreed amalgamation of both, but also the statements of the Tapas 7, of Gerry McCann “When asked at what time he went to check on the children the night Madeleine disappeared, he recalls that this was around 21:04 according to his watch”, and subsequently Kate McCann in her book by his watch”, all contradict his mendacious assertion.
He backtracked six weeks later. Quite why Mitchell invented, or was asked to tell this particular lie is difficult to understand.

What it did however, was to prove even to the most loyal McCann supporter that facts were now largely irrelevant to the ‘official story’, and that nothing Mitchell said could be believed.

4th Grandma Healy - again. Religion
According to the official line the McCanns were, or are, a religious Roman Catholic couple. Evidence adduced for this was their calling for a priest soon after reporting Madeleine missing, a very early trip to Rome to meet the Pope - both in preference to searching for their missing child - private use of the local church and many other reported issues.
Kate’s publicly reported “Forgiveness” for the alleged predatory paedophile who has been holding, and we may suppose abusing, Madeleine for the past decade is a matter of record, but is set against her published hatred and wish to harm the man who was leading the investigation into the disappearance.
The Press did their duty with ‘Their family says the couple's ordeal has left their staunch Catholic faith undimmed.'

For clarification we may need to heed the words of Kate’s mother, Susan Healy
Kate and Gerry were not the most devout family."

5th Grandma Healy - YET again. Size of her daughters ‘décolletage’
“Mrs Healy has been a staunch defender of her daughter and has spoken out in the past about how Mrs McCann has felt persecuted by parts of the media.
Last October, she claimed that her daughter, Kate told her: “If I weighed another two stone, had a bigger bosom and looked more maternal, people would be more sympathetic.

Special Award
Philomena McCann / Philomena Rickwood / Mrs Tony Rickwood - deserves a special place in the pantheon of those who have, through crass stupidity, demand for the lime-light, lack of attention to detail when they were being instructed what to say, and for many other reasons, have compromised the McCanns’ situation beyond recognition.

She is one of Gerry’s sisters.

These are extracts from interviews - all in the public domain. [My bolding in what follows.]

PM: Absolutely. It was hours before the local police turned up and we're talking two bobbies that totally downplayed the incident and said that Maddie had maybe just wandered off, and that... but what 3-year-old would wander off for hours on their own? It took the CID 5 hours before they responded to come and even then it was, kind of, shrug of the shoulders.

Kate in her book says they were there by 11.10pm, considerably less than an hour after having been contacted, by whoever actually did. And then Kate adds
By midnight, however, evidently they were concerned enough to inform the PJ . . . based in the town of Portimao, twenty miles or so from Praia da Luz, and took over an hour to arrive.

So the PJ were there by 1am. Less than 3 hours from the confused report of a missing child.

. . . kind of, shrug of the shoulders . . “
This hardly corresponds to the reality of the National Guard organising a massive search of the area with local people and holiday makers overnight, the seizing of CCTV images, monitoring of the airport and the bridge between Portugal and Spain, a team of PJ giving up rest days and cancelling family holidays, sleeping in the incident room, some on sofas, some on the floor, queuing for the ‘facilities’, all reported in detail in Dr Amaral’s book “The Truth of the Lie”: 

PM: She was sleeping between her brother and sister
Not according to the McCanns, who say she was in a bed and the twins were in cots

PM: Gerry and Kate are in a clear line of sight of their kids. They regularly go across to check; maybe if the kids have been disturbed or crying or anything and if they'd come out the front they would have seen them.

They were not in clear sight of anything, and if the children had ‘come out of the FRONT’ they would have been entirely invisible. In any event the McCanns’ own account and sketch in the PJ documentation prepared by them, shows the McCanns sitting with their backs to the apartment.

PM: "I mean, you can hear his voice breaking. His wife, she can barely stand up. She can't sleep, she can't eat.

But she can laugh and joke and go jogging.

PM: Part of it is that they're, errm... trying to get Kate to admit to having accidentally killed Madeleine and disposed of her body... hidden and disposed of her body - which is complete nonsense. Errr... It has no factual basis whatsoever and, looking at the scenario: assuming that when they'd gone home, early evening, Kate has murdered her daughter and then gone out for some convivial company with friends, sat and had a meal and later rai... you know, raised an alarm - but sat through all that perfectly normal with people and then done it.

Philomena McCann: They tried to get Kate to, errr... confess to having accidentally killed, errr... Madeleine by offering her a deal through her lawyer, which was: 'If you say that you killed Madeleine by accident; and then hid her; and then disposed of the body, errr... then we can guarantee you a two-year jail sentence or even less. You may get off because people feel sorry for you; it was an accident.’

This is impossible under Portuguese Law. It is an invention by Kate, though Philomena’s use of the word ‘murder’, and then changing this to ‘killed by accident’ may be revealing.
In fact, as the world knows, the PJ were suggesting no such thing.

PM: : “. . . As far as I know they've changed their status and they are suspects. -
Q: ”Does this mean that they are now formal suspects?
PM: : "Yes that's true
The McCanns and their spokesman subsequently spent a huge amount of effort and money persuading the public and Leveson LJ that “arguido” did NOT mean suspect - even though it clearly does.
PM:  But he's not the main suspect, for some unknown reason there's something about a sniffer dog sniffing Kate. Suddenly a dog can talk and says she smelled a death. How can that be when a British sniffer dog came out months after Madeleine's case. They're doctors, if there's a smell of death on them could that possibly be a patient?”

No it couldn’t. Doctors do not go on holiday wearing unwashed work clothes soiled by bodily fluids from cadavers they have examined a fortnight earlier, and then not change, or wash the clothes, for THREE MONTHS. Very few people would do this.

PM: Errr... yes, they absolutely will cooperate with the police. They are more than prepared to undergo more questioning.

We now know that Kate, on her own admission, refused to answer 48 questions put by the police, and that both refused to co-operate further, to the point of concealing the existence of the Pool photo, and fleeing the country when the enquiry started to heat up.

PM: Kate and Gerry are loving parents; they tried so hard to have children. They had to undergo IVF; Kate had difficult pregnancies.

Kate reports that her first pregnancy was “Totally without complication. No sickness, no back pain, no bleeding, no swelling. I felt great.”

PM: Yes, I do think she's still alive. We have had no evidence contrary to that and as for cadaver dogs sniffing death on Kate; I mean, what is she? Lassie? Is she gonna speak to them and ask what they're smelling? Kate's a doctor - what does this mean? You know, they've been given a team that send her to go and sniff Kate's clothes and the dogs are told what to do. If they start barking, how are we supposed to interpret that? Except, perhaps, they're ‘barking’.
Yet another person who cares nothing for the reliability of cadaver and blood dogs.
(One wonders what her, and their collective, attitude is towards Cancer detection dogs, or drugs and explosive detection dogs, widely and increasingly used across the world.)

* * * * * * *
These are only some from the almost endless store of Philomena gibbering nonsense.
To sum up, the net effect of almost everything said by Philomena has been either wrong, distorted, or has drawn attention to facts - which are ALL against the ‘Official Story’.
Small wonder then that after a fairly short interval she was shut down, and has gone back into obscurity . . . except that her influence on the children of Ullapool is undiminished.

Ten years have now passed since Madeleine met her death.,
The same ten years have now passed between this

Philomena McCann
Don’t like her aggressive “I am right - don't question it attitude” ‘ 2007

and this
'A very sorry excuse for a teacher, I wonder how the Ullapool faculty staff has not investigated the “issues” brought up by me, and other parents. A thoroughly dishonest and morally corrupt individual.' 2017. (13 Thumbs up “likes”.)

Let us never forget the immortal words of Groucho Marx - and others
The opera ain’t over till the fat lady sings,”

When we add the evidence suggesting her link to the forgery and transporting of the Pool Photo, and the almost undoubted fact of her heavy involvement in the preparation of the Dossier of Death which led to the McCann’s orchestration of the hounding to her suicide of the late Brenda Leyland, we cannot help thinking that the epithet “morally corrupt individual” might be perceptive.