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Yard will hunt missing clues/Met review is 'a waste'

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Yard will hunt missing clues/Met review is 'a waste'

Post  Annabel on Sat 14 May - 7:24

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/3580138/Former-top-cop-John-OConnor-backs-Madeleine-McCann-probe.html

Maddie: Yard will hunt missing clues

By MIKE SULLIVAN, Crime Editor and GRANT ROLLINGS

Published: Today
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THE Metropolitan Police was last night setting up its special squad to review the Madeleine McCann case - as a former top cop said: "If something's been missed they will find it."

A team from the Homicide and Serious Crime Command is being assembled under a senior investigating officer expected to be appointed today.

Initially around ten officers will work on the review - rising dramatically if new evidence is found.



It is expected a scenes-of-crime officer and a forensic scientist will be among them.

The team will review witness statements, make a fresh appeal for information and carefully re-check alibis given after three-year-old Madeleine was abducted on holiday in Praia da Luz, Portugal, on May 3, 2007.

John O'Connor, former Commander of the Flying Squad at New Scotland Yard, said: "They will be looking for something that has been overlooked or not developed which could lead to a fresh line of enquiry.

"A sighting, a tip-off, something that didn't ring bells at the time but could be vital.


"It is not inconceivable that something major could have been missed in an investigation of this size and complexity.

"I firmly believe that if there is something to be found this Scotland Yard review will uncover it."

Portuguese police have pledged to co-operate after lobbying by Joanna Kuenssberg O'Sullivan, Chargé d'Affaires at the British Embassy in capital Lisbon.

The ball started rolling after Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry wrote a heartfelt open letter to PM David Cameron in Thursday's Sun to request a review of the case.


Request ... Theresa May

It prompted Mr Cameron and Home Secretary Theresa May to ask Met Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson to use his force's expertise on the case.

The team will meet Kate, 43, and Gerry, 42, from Rothley, Leics.

A senior Met source said: "They'll be gently told not to raise their hopes too much - four years have elapsed since she vanished and the trail has long gone cold. But the team will promise them they will do all they can to move things on."

The team will then visit officers in Leicestershire - the UK liaison force in the hunt - before flying to Portugal next week. The source said: "Our role will be to assist the Portuguese police. They'll take the lead because Madeleine disappeared there."


Mr O'Connor added: "It's imperative the two sides work well together. Attending the crime scene and re-examining forensic exhibits will be a delicate task to be handled with diplomacy.

"They cannot afford to give the impression they are showing the Portuguese how it should be done - that could be catastrophic."

He added: "One can sense the relief in the McCanns that something positive is happening at last.

"There can be no closure for them until they know exactly what happened. Please God this will put an end to their ordeal."

m.sullivan@the-sun.co.uk
Blast for peer who says
Met review is 'a waste'
By TOM NEWTON DUNN, Political Editor

A LABOUR peer sparked fury yesterday - by branding the Met case review a waste of money.

Lord Harris also said David Cameron's request was political interference with police business.



He said: "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."

Harris, a member of the Metropolitan Police Authority, added: "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."

No10 hit back at the claim the PM was interfering in police business.

His official spokesman said he made "a request, not a direction" for a review.

Asked why other families with missing children were not offered the same treatment, he replied: "It's quite an exceptional case. It's been going on for some time and there's a huge amount of public interest.

"The Prime Minister has been very clear that he wants to do everything we can to support the family."

The Met confirmed Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson was asked, not told, "to provide expertise".

A spokesman said: "He took the decision it was the right thing to do."

There were suggestions yesterday that the review could take millions away from fighting crime.

But Home Secretary Theresa May has agreed to foot the bill from her department's excess budget.

Labour yesterday insisted Lord Harris's opinion was not shared by the party.

Leader Ed Miliband's spokesman said: "Lord Harris does not represent the party's view."

Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper added: "We fully back Kate and Gerry McCann's request for information to be reviewed. Any overlooked piece of this jigsaw could be important."


[b]

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Re: Yard will hunt missing clues/Met review is 'a waste'

Post  dutchclogs on Sat 14 May - 9:25

I wonder what John Stalker thinks of all this ?

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Re: Yard will hunt missing clues/Met review is 'a waste'

Post  Dimsie on Sat 14 May - 10:59

The source said: "Our role will be to assist the Portuguese police. They'll take the lead because Madeleine disappeared there."


Mr O'Connor added: "It's imperative the two sides work well together. Attending the crime scene and re-examining forensic exhibits will be a delicate task to be handled with diplomacy.

"They cannot afford to give the impression they are showing the Portuguese how it should be done - that could be catastrophic."


If for once we decide to believe the Sun and someone actually did say this, then of course they're quite right - it IS a Portuguese case, it always will be, the British will only ever be able to assist the Portuguese, they can never take over the investigation. As for not trying to give the impression they're showing the Portuguese how it should be done - I don't think Scotland Yard needs to be told how to act professionally, how no police force of any standing would ever act in an insulting way towards another police force.

If the two sides end up working together, that would be very interesting, and of course Dr Amaral would need to be involved since he was the co-ordinator at a crucial time in the investigation. The fact that he has since resigned from the police doesn't mean his input wouldn't be extremely valuable, but I'm sure I don't need to do tell Scotland Yard how it should be done (the Sun might have to reprimand me if I tried doing that. )

Very interesting times ahead, I hope.

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Re: Yard will hunt missing clues/Met review is 'a waste'

Post  weary on Sat 14 May - 16:23

The Sun forgot to mention that the Child Abuse Protection Unit would be part of the investigation. Funny, that. Do they know something we don't? You'd think they'd be called in if needed, not from day 1.

I suppose it's reasonable to meet with the McCanns. I wonder if Scotland Yard will be as comforting as this article claims? The Sun is sunnily pro-Kate and Gerry, having just excerpted the book. The McCanns blat endlessly about their leads not being followed up. Well, cough up, Kate and Gerry. The Sun and Scotland Yard are not going to tell us if the visit is also going to involve a subpoena of all the leads and of the accounts of all the PIs, medical records, cell phone records, and so on. Then SY zip over to talk to the Leicestershire police, who developed evidence against the McCanns, according to wikileaks.

A police force isn't usually happen if a force thought to be more expert suddenly lands on them, according to my father; as an FBI agent frequently called in when a local force couldn't cope with a federal crime, he has lots of experience of that kind of understandable resentment. The LP may feel that way, but I hope not. The PJ is a force with its own dignity and capacities, and I hope they will not feel that SY thinks it's a superior force. I'm hoping that they have some good memories of working with the British.

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Re: Yard will hunt missing clues/Met review is 'a waste'

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