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Gerry McCann Statement - 10th May 2007

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Gerry McCann Statement - 10th May 2007 Empty Gerry McCann Statement - 10th May 2007

Post  Susan Sun 27 Sep - 20:57

Courtesy of Maddie Case Files Team

Volume IV, pages 891-903

Witness statement of Gerald Patrick McCann, on the 10th of May 2007, at 3.20 p.m.
Location: CID Portimão

The witness is heard as a victim, being the father of the minor. Of British nationality, he has no command of the Portuguese language, spoken or written. Thus, the interview is
done in the presence of an interpreter, Alice Dias Homem de Gouveia Avakoff.

That he fully confirms the statements made previously at this police department on 4 May 2007, being available to provide any further clarifications.

Asked, he clarifies that, apart from the personal photos already delivered by him to the police authorities after the disappearance of his daughter MADELEINE, he has no others in his possession. He adds that it is his wife KATE who usually takes pictures, he does not recall taking any pictures during this holiday, at night.

As he was asked, he mentions that in January 2003 he went to Lanzarote, in Spain, with Fiona and David Payne, where they spent a week's holiday not having any children at that time. At that time, despite having no children yet, KATE was 6 months pregnant with MADELEINE, a pregnancy that resulted from IVF. Still in 2003, in September, he went to Umbria, in Italy, with his wife KATE, and the couples MATHEW and RACHEL, and RUSSEL and JANE, for a week's holiday where they attended FIONA and DAVID's wedding. The deponent clarifies that the trip to Lanzarote was organised by himself as he had been there the previous year with KATE and they had enjoyed it very much, whereas the trip to Italy was arranged by FIONA and DAVID, given that it was for their wedding.

Concerning the events in Portugal, as already stated in his previous statements, he arrived at Faro airport on 28 April 2007 at around 12h30, having travelled immediately to the OCEAN CLUB in an airport mini-bus where he arrived at around 14h20/14h30.

That he headed for the OCEAN CLUB reception where he presented his documents, those of KATE and of his three children, for check-in. He was then given the key to apartment A5, the choice of that apartment having been made at random by the OCEAN CLUB management, given that, as he understood it, David Payne, who had dealt directly with the reservations, had not been given a choice.

He adds that the only stipulation by the group was that the apartments had to be close to one another because, contrary to what the trip brochure announced, the resort did not provide a "baby listening" service, that is, a service in which a group of employees would “watch over” the children that are asleep in their apartments while the parents are away. He doesn't know exactly how that surveillance works in practice, given the fact that he never used it, but he knows that other MARK WARNER resorts provide this service, and some members of his group had access to it on previous holidays, though he does not know exactly who. He mentions that, for this reason, David Payne decided to use the personal listening devices to monitor his children, though he had never used them on previous holidays that they had spent together.

That, on the first day, given that they arrived at lunch time, they ate only sandwiches both on the plane and on the bus during the journey from the airport to the OCEAN CLUB. After completing the check-in at the main reception, where they were dropped off by the mini-bus, which lasted until 15h00, they went to the apartment where they unpacked their bags, which lasted 16h45. Pointing out that after check-in, the trip with the bags to the apartment was made on a mini-bus that belonged to the resort.

Subsequently, at around 17h00, the whole group, including children, went to the TAPAS restaurant, located at the back of the apartment, next to the pool, to attend a welcoming committee arranged by MARK WARNER, where they met the tennis and sailing instructors, and other resort employees, which ended at around 18h30, several glasses of sangria having been served to them.

That that was the first time they all walked together inside and around the resort. They left by the front door, which he locked with the key, he walked around the existing wall and turned right, going down the resort’s side road up to the secondary reception, where they entered without difficulty , although they had an access card, which was not requested from them and that they had been given during Check-in.

After they passed through the secondary reception, they went to the TAPAS restaurant, next to one of the swimming pools, the adults having sat down in a covered area outside, while the children stayed next to the small pool playing on the playground that was there. That during this time all the adults stood up and went to watch the children near where they were. The deponent and his wife took turns watching.

When the reception committee was over, the nine adults and eight children walked to the MILLENIUM restaurant. They went back to the secondary reception, turned left and, at the top of the road, turned right, then left again, then right again, up to the main street that leads to the restaurant. Because it was a long way, at some point in time the deponent and his wife KATE had to carry the twins in their arms, but not MADELEINE, who was always on foot.

They arrived at their destination between 18h50 and 19h00, having sat at a large table where they all had dinner, including the children who were seated among the adults, never leaving the place, except for one of the twins who went to the toilet with the deponent. About an hour later they finished dinner, and returned, equally walking, by the same route, though going wrong in one of the streets where they should have turned left, ending up only turning only at the next street. He adds that, as they were all very tired they went directly to the apartment, where they arrived at around 20h10/20h15, the route back having been slightly faster given that the twins were carried all the way.

In the apartment, they bathed the children and gave them a glass of milk, putting them to bed at exactly 20h45, he remembers that time because it was exactly one hour later than their usual bedtime. After putting the children to bed, the deponent and his wife took a bath, then settled down in the living room to watch television. He points out that at the moment they arrived at the residence, David Payne invited them to go for a glass of wine after putting down the children, but they turned down the offer as they were extremely tired. He thinks that nobody left their apartments on the first night. Asked, he said that in England, when not on holiday, the deponent and his wife would go to bed at 22h30/23h00, the twins at 19h00 and MADELEINE at 19H30.

The following day (Sunday), the children woke up at 08h00, the deponent and his wife having woken up at around 07h30. They got dressed and at about 08h40 they left the apartment going to the MILLENIUM restaurant, once more on foot and by the same route as on the previous night, but without the mistake referred to previously, arriving there at 08h45/09h00. The group did not all arrive at the same time, rather in a phased manner, therefore they were not all seated at the same table.

He thinks that MATHEW and his wife RACHEL did not take breakfast due to the former having spent a bad night with vomiting and diarrhoea. At breakfast the children again sat at the same table among the adults, and it finished at around 09h25.

The deponent, his wife KATE and their three children went to the OCEAN CLUB by the same route, where they arrived at 09h40, the deponent having entered the apartment by the main door, which was locked, collecting a bag with clothing and creams for the children, then going inside the resort area. The twins stayed at the crèche next to the TAPAS, which was for children aged between one and two, and then he and KATE took MADELEINE to the other crèche for older children, which is located on the 1st floor at the resort’s main reception, where they arrived at around 09h50. Besides MADELEINE, from the group, only Ella, the daughter of JANE and RUSSEL, went to the same crèche. The remaining children, being very young, stayed at the crèche next to the TAPAS.

Again he went on foot, leaving the secondary reception he turned right, went down the street passing the “BATISTA” supermarket, turned left passing the main reception. After putting the children in their crèches they went to the “BATISTA” supermarket where they bought items for the following lunch and breakfast.

At around 12H30, the deponent and KATE first went to pick up MADELEINE and then the twins, going to the apartment. On this day, Sunday, they had lunch on the balcony of David Payne's apartment with the whole group, including children, except for MATHEW, who was ill and at that moment was sleeping on the balcony of his apartment that was below and to the left in relation to where they were having lunch.

They took the children to the play area next to the pool, where the playground is located, at 14H15, having stayed there until about 14H20. After that time they left the twins in the crèche at TAPAS, and either the deponent or KATE, he doesn't know who, took MADELEINE to the crèche above the main reception, following the previously described route. He clarifies that the children’s drop-off and collection times were recorded at each crèche along with the contact number and location of the respective parents.

At around 17h00 the OCEAN CLUB nannies conducted MADELEINE and the other children from the crèche on the 1st floor of the main reception to the area next to the TAPAS, under awnings, where they had dinner under the supervision of the employees and, at times, of their own parents. Dinner ended at around 17h30, the time at which the employees’ supervision ended and the parents took over watching the children in the ”TAPAS” play area until 18h30. Then they returned to the apartment, the deponent opened the main door with his key and, then, the back door through which KATE and the children entered.

After doing the hygiene, the children were put to bed about 19h30, and the deponent and KATE left for dinner at the TAPAS at around 20h30. Between 19h30 and 20h30 they took a bath and drank wine, Portuguese or New Zealand, and a beer.

They left the house through the main door, that he was sure he locked, and the back door was also closed and locked. They were the first to arrive at the TAPAS where everyone showed up except only for MATHEW, who was still ill. Nevertheless, his wife RACHEL showed up for dinner. Except for the situation described above, that occurred during lunch, he did not see MATHEW during the whole of Sunday.

Dinner ended at around 23h00, and during this period, every half-hour, the deponent and KATE went, alternately, to the apartment to confirm that all was well with the children. On that day, only the deponent and his wife entered the apartment. He is sure that they always entered through the front door, not knowing if they locked it upon leaving. Usually they entered the apartment, in which one of the living room lights was on, went to the children's bedroom door, which was ajar, and only peeped inside, trying to hear if the children were crying. The shutters were closed with only two or three slats open, the window was closed though he is not totally sure if it was locked, and the curtains drawn closed. Ten minutes after dinner ended they made their way to the apartment, going to bed right away.

On the following days they always took breakfast at home, shopping on the day before, generally maintaining the daily routine described above. When the children were at the crèches they had tennis classes, KATE at 09h15, the deponent an hour later, from Monday to Thursday.

From memory, on Tuesday, 1 May 2007, by indication from RUSSEL, he went to pick up MADELEINE at the crèche using a short-cut that began at the car park opposite the secondary reception and went between the buildings, which he used to fetch and take his daughter from then on.

Concerning the routine, on Tuesday there was a slight change given that after lunch, at 13h30, the deponent and KATE decided to take the three children to Praia da Luz, having gone on foot, taking only the twins in baby buggies. They all left by the main door because of the buggies, went around to the right, down the street of the “BATISTA” supermarket and went to the beach along a road directly ahead.

They were at the beach for about 20 minutes, the deponent and MADELEINE having put their feet in the water. During this time the weather changed with a cloudy sky and cold, therefore they went to a terrace at a café near the beach, on the left, where they bought five ice-creams and two drinks. Asked, he said that at that place there was an individual playing latin music on a guitar, to whom he intended to give some coins, but having none at the time, he didn't. That the individual had a neglected and careless appearance, unshaven and somewhat raggedy. He was Caucasian, 175cm tall, thin, 70 to 75kg in weight, dark, short hair, almost shaven-headed with grey sides, and not wearing glasses. Wearing a light brown-coloured sports jacket, with a hood at the back, and dark denim trousers, not noticing the footwear. He said that he never behaved strangely, nor approached or looked at the children in an ostensive manner. On returning they left the children at their crèches, as usual, the deponent and his wife having gone to play tennis or jogging.

On the day that MADELEINE disappeared, Thursday, 3 May 2007, they all woke up at the same time, between 07H30 and 08H00. When they were having breakfast, MADELEINE addressed her mother and asked her “why didn't you come last night when SEAN and I were crying?” (SIC). That he thought this comment very strange given that MADELEINE had never spoken like this and, the night before, they had maintained the same system of checking on the children, not having detected anything abnormal. When he questioned her about the comment, she left without any explanation.

On Wednesday night, 2 May 2007, apart from the deponent and his wife, he thinks that DAVID PAYNE also went to his apartment to check that his children were well, not having reported to him any abnormal situation with the children. On this day, the deponent and KATE had already left the back door closed, but not locked, to allow entrance by their group colleagues to check on the children. He clarifies that the main door was always closed but not necessarily locked with the key. He does not know if the window next to the front door, and that gave access to the children's bedroom, was locked, given that he assumed that the shutters could not be opened from the outside. Still on this night, KATE slept in the children's bedroom, in the bed next to the window, because the deponent was snoring.

He cannot say exactly, but he thinks that on Monday or Tuesday MADELEINE had slept for some time in his bedroom, with KATE, as she had told him that one or both twins were crying, making much noise.

Back to Thursday, after breakfast, about 09h00, KATE and the children left by the back door, the deponent having left by the front door, which he locked with the key, having also closed and locked the back door from the inside.

They made their way on foot down the usual route to the crèche next to the TAPAS, where they left the twins, and, while KATE stayed to play tennis, the deponent took MADELEINE to her crèche, through the short-cut, where they arrived at 09h15, and , since it was obligatory, he signed the child's attendance register. On returning, not by the short-cut, he went to the “BATISTA” supermarket where he bought milk, he presumes, making his way to his apartment, entering through the front door, which was locked by key, at around 09H40/09H45.

He remained at home for about 15 minutes, putting on tennis clothes, left by the front door, that he did not lock, and made his way to the tennis courts down the usual route, they being next to the TAPAS. He played tennis for an hour with the instructor and other students, among whom was an individual he had met during this holiday, called "JEZ", and with whom he had established not quite a friendship, but rather a simple acquaintance. "JEZ" has two small children whose exact age he does not know. As to his wife, he had seen her next to the pool but had never spoken with her.

The tennis class finished at 11H15, he stayed in the pool area talking with his wife and other people, whom he does not remember. At 12H00, he agreed with KATE, as he recalls it, that she would make lunch and the deponent would pick up MADELEINE. He thinks that it was KATE who took the twins home. Since it was he who went to collect MADELEINE, he is sure he used the short-cut.

At 12h30 they started lunch, the meal having lasted an hour, until 13h30. After that time they made their way to the resort play area, the deponent having left through the front door and the rest of the family through the back door that, once again, he shut and locked from the inside. As for the front door, he does not know exactly if he locked it.

They stayed in the play area for approximately an hour, until 14H30/14H35. After that, they left the twins at the crèche near the TAPAS, they signed the register, and the three of them (deponent, KATE and MADELEINE) made their way to the crèche at the main reception, where they arrived at 14H50 and delivered MADELEINE, not being able to say precisely who signed the register.

The deponent and KATE returned to the OCEAN CLUB by the short-cut and at the secondary reception they asked the lady employee if there was a vacant tennis court they could reserve. They were told there was a vacancy between 14H30 and 15H30. As it was already 15h00, they began to play immediately. At 15H30, the tennis instructor arrived, who taught them a class until 16H30.

They stayed there, talking, until 16H45, at which time the twins went to the meal area. At 17h00, as usual, MADELEINE arrived accompanied by the nannies and the other children. After her arrival, MADELEINE dined, having finished at 17H30.

After 17H30 they went to the apartment, the deponent having entered by the main door, which he did not lock while he was inside the residence. KATE and the children entered by the back door, after this had been opened from the inside by the deponent.

They bathed the children, the deponent having left at 18H00 for a tennis game only for men, which was attended by: DAN, the tennis instructor; JULIAN, with whom he had played tennis several times; and CURTIS, with whom he had also played before.

During the afternoon of that day, the rest of the group, including the children, were at the beach, having returned at 18H30, the time at which he saw DAVID PAYNE next to the tennis court. DAVID went to visit KATE and the children and returned close to 19H00, trying to convince the deponent to continue to play tennis, which he refused, as he had already been plying for about an hour and had to go back to his wife. Nevertheless, RUSSEL, DAVID and MATHEW stayed to play.

At around 19H00, he made his way to the apartment, finding KATE and the children playing on the sofa. About 10 to 15 minutes later, they took the children to the bedroom and they all sat on MADELEINE's bed to read a story. At 19H30, the twins were already in their respective cots and MADELEINE in the bed next to the bedroom door. He does not know if they were asleep but from the silence he presumed that they were. As it was still early he took a bath, he thinks that KATE had already done so, they talked a little and drank wine or beer.

At 20H35, they left the apartment towards the “TAPAS”. Before they left, and because the children's bedroom door was ajar as always, he opened it a little more, listening from the outside and, as there was complete silence, he did not even enter, returning the door to its previous position, with a space of about 10cm.

He is certain that, before leaving home, the children's bedroom was totally dark, with the window closed, but he does not know it was locked, the shutters closed but with some slats open, and the curtains also drawn closed. Asked, he mentions that during the night the artificial light coming in from the outside is very weak, therefore, without a light being lit in the living room or in the kitchen, the visibility inside the bedroom is much reduced. Despite what he said in his previous statements, he states now and with certainty, that he left with KATE through the back door which he consequently closed but did not lock, given that that is only possible from the inside. Concerning the front door, although he is certain that it was closed, it is unlikely that it was locked, because they left through the back door.

They took the usual route to the “TAPAS”, where they arrived a little after 20H35, not having passed on the route anyone known nor detected anything abnormal. Asked, he said that the dinner bookings were made since Monday, it was already the intention of the group to take their meals there. They were the first of the group to arrive, seating themselves at the biggest table, as usual, which is located in the middle between other tables, under an awning with a transparent plastic surface at the front. He mentions that they were seated at the table, in a position that allowed the deponent to see almost the entire back door of his apartment, through which they left and entered and which gave access to the living room.

He adds that, among other people whom he does not recall, at one of the small tables was the CARPENTER couple, whom he also met playing tennis and with whom they spoke until the other group members began to arrive. He does not recall the order of arrival but he has the idea that MATHEW and RACHEL were the first to arrive after the deponent. As time went by, the rest of the group arrived until all nine adults were there. At around 21H00, MATHEW stood up from the table, saying that he was going to check on the children. Nevertheless, he did not say that he would go to check on the deponent’s children, and it was only after the disappearance of MADELEINE that he told him that at 21h00 the shutters of the children's bedroom window were closed. At 21H05, MATHEW returned, the time at which the deponent left the table to go check on his children.

He walked the normal route up to the back door, which being open he only had to slide, and while he was entering the living room, he noticed that the children's bedroom door was not ajar as he had left it but half-way open, which he thought was strange, having then thought that possibly MADELEINE had got up to go to sleep in his bedroom, so as to avoid the noise produced by her siblings. Therefore, he entered the children's bedroom and established visual contact with each of them, checking and he is certain of this, that the three were deeply asleep. He left the children's bedroom returning to place the door how he had already previously described, then went to the bathroom. Everything else was normal, the shutters, curtains and windows closed, very dark, there only being the light that came from the living room.

He adds that he did not enter any other part of the residence, where he was for only two or three minutes, leaving yet again through the back door, that he closed but did not lock. He clarifies that he returned without checking any other couple’s children, even because he had not been asked to do so.

After leaving through the side gate, and while on his way to the secondary reception entrance, less than 10 metres from the gate, he saw “JEZ” walking up the street on the opposite pavement, bringing with him a baby buggy with his youngest child. He crossed the road in JEZ's direction who was walking up on the right-hand side, in the ascending direction, both having chatted for 3 to 4 minutes, about tennis, holidays and children. While talking with JEZ, he saw no-one from the group, nor detected any suspicious individual or vehicle. Because he was specifically asked, he relates that during this period of time he did certainly not see JANE passing that location, although he clarifies that he was speaking facing JEZ, with his back to the other pathway, where his apartment is situated. He also mentions that JEZ never told him that he had seen anyone, given that he was in front.

He then returned to the TAPAS, between 21h10 and 21h15, dinner having gone as normal. As the movement of people at the table was frequent, he does not know if, when he returned, anyone else was absent, namely JANE. At around 21h30 he drew KATE's attention to the fact that it was time for her to go to see the children, MATHEW having immediately volunteered to substitute her, given the fact that she was chatting. Three to four minutes later MATHEW returned, saying only "all is quiet" (SIC), he having entered through the back door, given that he did not have the key and it was usual for them to enter in that way.

After MATHEW arrived and before KATE left, he does not recall if anyone else was absent, although it was very probable that such had happened. He thinks that, on that night, none of the adults nor children were ill. Asked, he mentions that the daughter of RUSSEL and FIONA would have been ill on Tuesday.

Half and hour later, without anything to remark, it being 22h03, he again alerted KATE that it was time to check the children. She immediately made her way to the apartment by the usual path, having entered through the back door. About 10 minutes later, he started to worry about her taking so long, and, at the moment the deponent prepared to get up and to check why she was taking so long, KATE appeared running, completely distraught and crying, saying that MADELEINE had disappeared and that she was sure because she had looked throughout the entire house.

The deponent ran into the apartment accompanied by the rest of the group who, at the time, were seated at the table. When he arrived at the bedroom he first noticed that the door was completely open, the window was also open to one side, the shutters almost fully raised, the curtains drawn back, MADELEINE's bed was empty but the twins continued sleeping in their cots. He clarifies that according to what KATE told him, that was the scenario that she found when she entered the apartment.

Then he closed the shutters, made his way to the outside and tried to open them, which he managed to do, much to his surprise given that he thought that that was only possible from the inside. They continued with searches outside, around the various apartment blocks, the deponent having asked MATHEW to go to the secondary reception in order to communicate the fact to the local police, since he had no doubt that his daughter had been abducted. He refutes, peremptorily, the possibility that MADELEINE could have left the apartment by her own means.

The deponent had had the wrong idea that MATHEW had seen the bedroom shutters closed when he was there at 21H30, and therefore he thought the disappearance would have taken place between 21h30 and 22h00, but presently he is fully convinced that the abduction took place during the period of time between his check at 21h05 and MATHEW's visit at 21H30. It was not until about 01h00 on 4 May 2007 that he learned through RUSSEL that his partner, JANE, at around 21h10, saw a man crossing the top of the road with a child in his arms, that may or may not have been his daughter MADELEINE. Asked, he mentions that he does not recall describing the exact type of pyjamas (colour, designs, etc.) that MADELEINE was wearing at the time she disappeared. The photo of his daughter MADELEINE, after having printed several at the hotel reception, was delivered this police’s agents on location, as well as to other persons who were there.

Asked, he stated that apart from her own apartment, MADELEINE only ever entered DAVID and FIONA’s apartment, although it was common that they frequented each others' apartments.

That, between Monday and Wednesday, not knowing the precise date, when they were leaving the residence through the main door, to place the children in the respective crèches, MADELEINE left running to the left, to the extreme opposite of the residential blocks where they were lodged, playing with the twins. That they walked down next to the most remote end of one of those blocks, not knowing exactly which one, and the three children got into one of the gardens at the back. Then they walked down the inside alley at the back, next to the hedges, up to the street that led to the secondary reception.

He peremptorily denies that anyone in the group mat be directly or indirectly involved in the disappearance of his daughter. He presumes that, when his wife alerted him about her disappearance, all the group members were seated at the table. He mentions that, also during the dinner, none of the members complained about being ill or manifested any strange behaviour; there was a relaxed atmosphere.

During the holidays he did not hire or borrow any motor vehicle, nor did he used a taxi or any other form of transport. He further clarifies that the only time MADELEINE accompanied them to the beach was the one described above, although she went to the beach in Luz three more times, one of those to go sailing, but always in the company of crèche nannies. Two of these trips took place after the date on which she was there with her parents. That, with respect to those episodes, MADELEINE never mentioned to him that anything strange had happened.

Asked, he mentions that on Thursday, 3 May 2007, there was nobody from outside of the group seated at the table, nor does he know any person with the name IRWIN.

Concerning the bed where his daughter was on the night she disappeared, he says that she slept uncovered, as usual when it was hot, with the bedclothes folded down. Concerning the other bed next to the window in the children's bedroom, he says that it showed no signs that anyone had put their feet on it, namely, dirt or shoe prints.

Concerning the half-hourly checking of the children, it had been inspired by the MARK WARNER system called "baby listening", as referred to previously. On the night of the events, he ate fish at dinner, and sausages and potatoes as a starter, drinking white wine. Usually, between 20h30 and the end of dinner, they would drink more or less a bottle of wine per person.

Asked, he says that KATE never told him anything about her having "a bad presentiment" concerning this trip.

He has no suspicion whatsoever, nor has he any enemies, something that applies equally to his wife, KATE. That, in the course of his profession, he never made any error, nor was he guilty of anything, except one time in 2000, when an unknown man entered the hospital where he worked, making incoherent threats without justification and calling out his name.

Reads, confirms, ratifies and signs.

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