Friday, November 19, 2010

Abducted by a paedophile but no evidence he has harmed her

Relief for McCanns as judge backs ban on book claiming Madeleine is dead

By Vanessa Allen
Last updated at 12:23 AM on 22nd February 2010

Madeleine McCann
Missing: Madeleine McCann
Kate and Gerry McCann yesterday described their joy at winning their court case against a Portuguese detective - but said he had already damaged the search for their daughter.

The parents of missing Madeleine said they were 'pleased and relieved' that a judge had banned Goncalo Amaral from repeating slurs about them.

The 50-year-old detective had asked the court in Lisbon to lift an injunction stopping his book, Maddie: The Truth of the Lie, being sold.

But Judge Maria Gabriela Cunha Rodrigues ruled against him.

Mr and Mrs McCann, both 41, are expected to proceed with a £ 1.1million libel case against Mr Amaral.

They said: 'The court case has demonstrated, once again, that there is no evidence that Madeleine has come to any harm.

'It has also clearly shown that no police force is actively looking for Madeleine. The motives of those who have tried to convince the world that Madeleine is dead, and who've disgracefully and falsely tried to implicate us in her disappearance, need to be seriously questioned.'

Madeleine was three when she disappeared from her parents' rented holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, on May 3, 2007. Mr Amaral's book claimed she died in an accident and her parents faked her abduction to cover up the death.

But Judge Rodrigues said there was no evidence the McCanns were involved, adding:

'When the chief inspector's thesis says that she is dead, the ordinary citizen will be less likely to report new facts or leads.'

A further hearing will be held this year to decide if the injunction is permanent.

Meanwhile, former ' suspect' Robert Murat has made a criminal complaint to prosecutors about four of the McCanns' friends who reportedly claimed to have witnessed him at the scene.

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