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The Maddy problem

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The Maddy problem

Post  Annabel on Fri 13 May - 14:08

http://www.politicshome.com/uk/article/27895/the_maddy_problem.html

The Maddy problem

The Prime Minister's decision to intervene in the case of Madeleine McCann could have political repercussions.

Although no one would have anything but sympathy for the McCanns' agonising plight, the decision of Downing Street and the Home Office to effectively direct the Met Police to get involved is causing some unease.

Some within Scotland Yard are uncomfortable at the way No.10 got involved and now politicians are expressing worries too.

I've just talked to Lord Toby Harris, an independent member of the Met Police Authority (and Labour peer) and he says:

“It raises very big questions about political direction of the police. Presumably, if a Police and Crime Commissioner gave such an instruction it would be in contravention of the protocol published this week [SEE HERE] by the Government? http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/media-centre/press-releases/crime-police-draft-protocol

“Of course it goes without saying that this is a very heart-breaking case, but what we are looking at is a case where the Met has no direct responsibility.

“There is clearly an issue about the resources being used and are they in effect saying that the Met is the default investigator for every case in the world involving a British citizen?

“It’s not just a question of direct costs, it’s a question of opportunity costs too. Our detective capacity is limited as it is.”

The Met had been examining the case but as recently as last week had largely ruled out any chance of making significant progress. The Home Office has agreed to meet the costs of the investigation but it appears only after the Met Police Authority and City Hall made clear it was unlikely to be able to approve the extra spending.



UPDATE: I just raised this at the morning Lobby briefing and the Prime Minister's official spokesman tried to draw a distinction between a 'request' from the Home Secretary and 'political direction' from the Home Secretary.

"It was done, yes, at the request of the Home Secretary, but it has been agreed by the Metropolitan Police Commissioner. It's not direction, it's a request," he said.

"It's quite an exceptional case. This is a very high profile case. It's clearly been going on for some time and there's a huge amount of public interest in this case. The Prime Minister has been very clear that he wants to do everything we can to support the family."

When asked if the PM was simply following a tabloid agenda in the hope of good headlines, the spokesman said: "We are responding to a request from the family in a particularly exceptional case".

I pointed out that if you are the Metropolitan Police Commissioner then a 'request' from the Home Secretary - especially about an operational matter like this - will feel very much like 'political direction', if not an order.

Lord Harris is not alone either. Senior Labour figures agree that it's right for him to raise the points he has.



FURTHER UPDATE. Lord Harris has gone further on his own blog HERE. http://www.lordtobyharris.org.uk/

On the Prime Minister's intervention, he states:

"This is in response to an open letter in The Sun and is entirely predictable in terms of the “pulling power” of News International on Government policy."

He says the intervention "drives a coach and horses" through the draft protocol. Lord Harris adds that the new probe:

"embroils their officers in a high profile investigation, where the chances of success are unclear, and which will divert limited investigative resources away from other matters."

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  tanszi on Fri 13 May - 15:34

Amen to that. Bring it on Lord Toby Harris, seems he has kahunas and is not afraid of anyone. I respect Lord Toby Harris.

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  Roasted Arizona on Fri 13 May - 15:36

and he says Madeleine's DEATH

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  Angelique on Fri 13 May - 15:40

RA

I expect that will be changed now you have mentioned it.

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  tanszi on Fri 13 May - 15:42

I know, but it shows his belief, as many do, that Madeleine is dead. ETA and maybe that was the PM's instruction, to investigate Madeleine's death. who knows?

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  dutchclogs on Fri 13 May - 16:08

Roasted Arizona wrote:and he says Madeleine's DEATH


Brave man

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  kitti on Fri 13 May - 16:12

Most people think she is dead even if she was abducted by paedophiles she wouldn't be able to withstand the abuse.

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  kitti on Fri 13 May - 16:14

Do you remember the baby that was stolen from a hospital and years down the line the child found the REAL mother, think it was in the USA recently....kate McCann mentioned that case too lol...I forget to mention it the other day..

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  Angelique on Fri 13 May - 16:38

kitti

Yes I remember that case - she knew she wasn't the daughter of her supposed Mother.

I am not surprised Kate has mentioned it - don't forget - "we have been working really hard".

ETA Carlina White - was this the one.


Last edited by Angelique on Fri 13 May - 16:45; edited 1 time in total

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  jinvta on Fri 13 May - 16:45

I am sure that Kate and Gerry would gladly pay for this review that that have been demanding for the past year. What better use of fund money could there possibly be? Come on Kate and Gerry, ante up, no stone unturned, eh?

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  kitti on Fri 13 May - 17:04

Guess what......the site has removed the 'death' word lol

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  kitti on Fri 13 May - 17:06

Angelique wrote:kitti

Yes I remember that case - she knew she wasn't the daughter of her supposed Mother.

I am not surprised Kate has mentioned it - don't forget - "we have been working really hard".

ETA Carlina White - was this the one.




Yes that's right.....kate mentioned her when talking about children being recovered years down the Line.

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Re: The Maddy problem

Post  Equinox on Fri 13 May - 17:18

These are this individuals personal views on this matter albeit they have now been made public. He is, of course, only saying what everybody else is thinking.

I do believe that extra resources - in terms of financial - will be made directly to the Met for this investigation from central Government. In the cases of murder enquiries the funding for them comes directly from central government regardless and not out the police forces set annual budget, because it is recognised that murder enquiries are both complex and financially draining on resources. My hunch is that they have probably classed this as a murder enquiry which would allow the funds to come from government to allow this investigation. I keep bringing up the point that Madeleine remains a WOC.

The Home Secretary has asked - not instructed - the Met to undertake a review. It is highly unlikely they would say no having been asked by both the Prime Minister and Theresa May, but the key point is they have asked and the Met have agreed to do so. The government have no authority to intervene in operational matters carried out by the police.

‘The Prime Minister and I have today agreed with Sir Paul Stephenson that the Metropolitan Police will bring its particular expertise to this case. Clearly, the detail of what that will entail will be a matter of operational judgment.’





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