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Maddie Case: Ex – Inspector’s Trial Begins With Questioning of McCann Witnesses



Original Source: TVI 4: Thursday 12 September 2013
By: Editors | 12/09/2013 20:33

Translated by Ines


Three witnesses chosen by the McCann couple were today heard at the beginning of the civil trial, for defamation, against ex – PJ inspector Gonçalo Amaral, following action brought by the parents of the English girl missing from the Algarve since 2007.


The information was given to the Lusa Press Agency by Isabel Duarte, lawyer for Madeleine McCann’s parents, on the first day of the trial during which the Judge Maria Emília Melo e Castro decided that there was no reason for the trial to be conducted behind closed doors, as had been requested by Gonçalo Amaral, who was present as an arguido in the Lisbon Civil Court.


Following the previous failure of the parties to reach an out of court settlement for the civil action, in which Madeleine McCann’s parents were requesting compensation of 1.2 million euros for alleged defamation by the PJ ex – inspector (who investigated the girl’s disappearance), the trial began with the questioning of three witnesses – a Canadian and two English persons -, “friends” of the McCann couple.


During this first session, the judge had to adapt the trial to the rules of the new Civil Court Code, a legal reform that entered into being on 1st September.


The trial continues on Friday with the questioning of five more witnesses for Madeleine’s parents, three of them being members of the McCann couple’s family.


In statements made to Lusa, Isabel Duarte says that, from the beginning, the McCann couple has always been open to an out of court settlement with Gonçalo Amaral, but that it was not possible to reach an agreement with the arguido.


However, she emphasised that the main objective of the McCann couple was that the investigation into the disappearance of the girl should be re-opened, which according to Duarte, has already been made concrete, without providing any details or other clues.


In a related case, the 7th Civil Court of Lisbon decided in January 2010, to uphold the ban on the sale of the book "Maddie: A Verdade da Mentira", written by Gonçalo Amaral, as well as the video with the same title, based upon documentary by TVI.


The ban of the book and the video, which present Amaral’s thesis about Kate and Gerry McCann’s involvement in their daughter’s disappearance with the hiding of her body, was ruled temporarily on 9th September 2009.


On 19th October 2010, the Lisbon Court of Appeal annulled the 7th Civil Court’s decision, after which the McCann couple appealed to the Supreme Court of Justice. In its decision of the 18th March 2011, the Supreme Court confirmed the decision of the Court of Appeal.


Madeleine McCann disappeared on 3rd may 2007, from an apartment in a resort in Praia da Luz, in the Algarve, where she was on holiday with her parents and twin siblings.


At the time of the disappearance, Gonçalo Amaral was the coordinator of the Criminal Investigation Department of the Portimão PJ.


Kate and Gerry McCann, who have always claimed that the girl was abducted, were made arguidos in September 2007.


The case was shelved due to lack of evidence in July 2008, the Public Ministry would allow the re-opening of the case if new facts about the girl’s disappearance emerge.





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