THE picture below may clear
Robert Murat, the first suspect
in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
ANGUS SYMINGTON &
On the left is
Praia da Luz estate agent Angus Symington, 37,
and on the right Mr Murat, 34.
Their resemblance shows that witnesses who claim they saw Mr
Murat outside the McCanns' apartment on the night Madeleine
vanished may have named the wrong man.
Expatriate Mr Murat has always insisted he was with his mother.
Now many in Praia da Luz believe that the eight witnesses who
say they saw Mr Murat could have confused him with Mr Symington.
Was Murat, right, confused with Symington'
The resemblance has emerged just two weeks after police revealed
that one of the McCanns' friends, 41-year-old medical researcher
David Payne, could also have been mistaken for
Mr Murat when
The lookalikes could force police into a total rethink of their
Mr Symington, who is about the same height as Mr Murat, is a
father-of-two who runs the Ocean Country Real Estate office at
Ocean Club complex where the McCanns were staying in Praia da Luz.
I'm amazed by the likeness, The hairline and the nose, it
could be me
When shown his picture, Mr Murat said: 'I'm amazed by the
likeness, The hairline and the nose, it could be me. Just the
chin is different.
'This guy has every reason to be at the Ocean Club. Remember '
people work. I wouldn't want what happened to me to happen to
Mr Murat said he intended to give the new evidence to his lawyer
so that it could be forwarded to
investigators in nearby Portimao. Later, Mr Murat's uncle
Eveleigh was shown Mr Symington's picture and said: 'b****y hell
' it's Robert. They are very similar.'
Mr Murat has always said he spent the fateful night at home in
the villa he shares with his mother Jennifer, 72, fewer than 150
yards from the McCanns' apartment.
But a series of witnesses have given statements claiming to have
seen him around the Ocean Club in the hours after Kate McCann
raised the alarm. They include three friends of the McCanns '
Russell O'Brien, Fiona Payne and Rachel Oldfield.
There is no suggestion that Mr Symington had anything to do with
the tragedy. He insisted that he was at home with his family six
miles away when Madeleine vanished.
He said last night: 'I had been away in England for 10 days and
came back the day before Madeleine went missing. I was here on
the day, and for a few days following, but then I left again for
'I categorically wasn't around on the night she vanished. I left
Praia da Luz at close of business at 6pm to go home. It couldn't
have been me. The first I was aware of the story was when I
arrived at work the next day.'