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The Daily Mail, 13/11/2007

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The Daily Mail, 13/11/2007

Post  Annabel on Mon 16 Jan - 11:05


The Daily Mail, 13/11/2007

A friend of Kate and Gerry McCann wants to "reveal the whole truth" about the case but is frightened of the couple‘s political allies, a lawyer claimed yesterday.

One of the so–called Tapas Nine wants to help Portuguese police with the six–month investigation but "feels obliged to keep silent", according to the unnamed legal source.

The lawyer attacked the intervention of "certain politicians" in the case and said they had prejudiced the hunt to discover what really happened to Madeleine McCann.
... Pressure?: Kate and Gerry McCann are said to be pressuring their friends to keep silent, according to reports Read more...

Revealed: First picture INSIDE the Portuguese holiday apartment where Madeleine vanished Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Foreign Secretary David Miliband both spoke to the couple directly before the McCanns were made official suspects in the case.

Direct contact stopped when they were made arguidos in September but the Premier has been briefed on the case since then and raised it with his Portuguese counterpart last month.

The unnamed lawyer, who claimed to represent one of the Tapas Nine, told the respected Spanish newspaper El Mundo: "My client feels obliged to keep silent about what he can do to help the investigation, and not because of the Portuguese secrecy laws.

"It‘s not that he is scared of the McCanns, but the economic and political lobby surrounding the couple is truly frightening to anybody.

"What my client wants is to reveal the whole truth, but he does not mean to accuse or blame anyone, as that is the job of the police.

"The only thing he wants is to help the police discover the truth about what happened before, during and after that dinner on May 3." McCann family spokesman Clarence Mitchell branded the report "utter rubbish" and insisted there was no rift between the couple and any of their friends.

He said the seven friends who dined with the McCanns that night only had one lawyer between them, and said he had not made any of the comments.

Scroll down for more ... Four of the Tapas Nine: (clockwise from top left) Fiona Payne, Jane Tanner, Russell O‘ Brien, Rachael Oldfield. Not pictured are Matthew Oldfield, David Payne, and Dianne Webster But the legal source said one friend had broken ranks and consulted his own lawyer without telling the others.

The lawyer said: "If you take into account all of the pressure that has been placed on my client and on other people, it is perfectly natural and understandable that my client has not told Clarence Mitchell of his decision to hire his own lawyer to co–operate more closely with the police." He went on to attack the advisers surrounding the McCanns, who have led a worldwide campaign to find their missing daughter.

The London–based lawyer said: "I understand perfectly that our Government is legally obliged to help the McCanns. What I can‘t understand is that they have received help which goes far beyond what would be considered normal in a case like this.

"It‘s not my job to have to explain why and how certain politicians have intervened in this case, but I‘m afraid these interventions have been prejudicial not only to my client but also for determining the truth." He went on: "I don‘t want to accuse anyone, but there are people very close to the McCanns who are not helping them at all.

"The intention of my client is to bring to light the truth of this sad story, without any concern for who might be implicated." Last week El Mundo reported that two of the Tapas Nine had contacted Portuguese police to ask to "correct" parts of their statements.

The claim followed speculation that contradictions and inconsistencies in the statements meant that police were about to make four of the group formal suspects in the case.

But it was denied by Mr Mitchell and individually by all of the members of the group contacted by the Daily Mail.

The lawyer was said to have been hired by one of the group in September, and repeated claims that the McCanns did not call the police on May 3 until the group discussed the possible implications of admitting they had all left their children alone while they ate dinner.

Scroll down for more ... Missing: And, at the centre of it all, four–year–old Madeleine McCann, who has been missing for six months He said: "The police were only informed after the group in question analysed the problems they could face for having left the children alone." If true that a male member of the group has hired his own lawyer then it could only be Russell O‘Brien, David Payne or Matthew Oldfield.

All three were named as among the four who could be made arguidos, along with Dr O‘Brien‘s partner Jane Tanner, but they have all denied that they want to change their police statements.

Mr Mitchell said: "All of Kate and Gerry‘s friends speak as one, they have one lawyer and he has certainly not put out any statements on their behalf.

"None of the group have asked to change their stories and none have expressed any worries about being suppressed.

"To suggest that there is some kind of political pressure on the group to stay quiet is outrageous." A friend added: "It‘s particularly disgusting to suggest that Kate and Gerry did not contact the police because they were worried about their childcare arrangements.

"Within five minutes of Kate raising the alarm one of the group had run to the Ocean Club reception to ask someone to call the police." Meanwhile, in Portugal, police were said to be considering whether contradictions in the group‘s statements could have come from mis–translations from English to Portuguese.

The other official suspect in the case, Robert Murat, was among the translators used by police in the first days of the investigation.

The Portuguese newspaper 24 Horas said police suspected he might have "manipulated" statements made by the McCanns and their friends. His lawyer denied the claim.

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Re: The Daily Mail, 13/11/2007

Post  gillyspot on Mon 16 Jan - 22:08

This is the natural article to follow on from yours and is dated 11th December 2007.

Note they met up "a few weeks ago"

"Kate and Gerry McCann held a secret meeting with the rest of the "Tapas Nine" amid reports that Portuguese police are coming to Britain to re-interview them, it was revealed yesterday.

The friends met last month for the first time since the McCanns' four-year-old daughter Madeleine vanished in Portugal seven months ago.

They were all dining with the couple in a tapas bar near the holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, where Madeleine was sleeping with two-year-old twin brother and sister Sean and Amelie.

Portuguese police were furious about the meeting. A source close to the investigation claimed it was "highly suspicious" that they had met up to "talk tactics".

Detectives are said to be awaiting formal clearance to come to Britain and question the nine again about alleged discrepancies in their statements.

But the couple's spokesman Clarence Mitchell denied that the nine had gathered to square their accounts before a police visit.

He said the emotional reunion "a few weeks ago" at a hotel near the couple's home in Rothley, Leics "was just to discuss the overall situation.

"They weren't comparing notes or doing anything untoward. It was an operational meeting to discuss what might be coming up in the next few weeks.

"They are in touch all the time by phone and emails anyway but decided to meet face to face. They were together for a few hours and discussed the overall position. They wanted to see each other because they hadn't done so for some time."

He added: "It was a private meeting and I therefore don't want to say more about it."

The other seven members of the party are heart specialist Dr David Payne, 41, his doctor wife Fiona, 34, hospital consultant Dr Russell O'Brien, 36, his partner Jane Tanner, 37, endocrinologist Dr Matthew Oldfield, 37, and wife Rachael, 36, and Dr Payne's mother Dianne Webster."


A cynical person might think that the McCanns wanted to keep their "friends" silent so called them all together so they couldn't speak out individually.
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Re: The Daily Mail, 13/11/2007

Post  matthew on Mon 16 Jan - 22:46

They all share one lawyer? & they couldn't arrange a reconstruction?
if one 'friend' broke rank...better late than never...still time

After the leveson inquiry any bad press the mccanns & co had was obviously piffle
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Re: The Daily Mail, 13/11/2007

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