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Martin Smith Statement

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So this Irishman Amaral was on the verge of interviewing ...

Post by honestbroker on Mon Dec 08, 2008 11:50 pm

Does anyone actually know who he is? Has he ever been identified? Has reference to him been released from the official files?

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Hi HB

Post by Tinkerbell43 on Tue Dec 09, 2008 1:40 am

I made a post concerning this witness. Please see page 5 on the thread "Can you help our campaign"

It was the best info I could find at the time.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Tue Dec 09, 2008 2:19 am

Tinkerbell43 wrote:I made a post concerning this witness. Please see page 5 on the thread "Can you help our campaign"

It was the best info I could find at the time.

Tinks.

Many thanks for that, Tinkerbell -- Martin Smith. Now here's something that might interest you from April this year and Sky News. Did Martin Smith positively identify Gerry, or did he merely eliminate Robert Murat?

http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/Sky-News-Archive/Article/20080641299179


An Irish tourist who saw someone carrying a child in a blanket on the night Madeleine McCann disappeared insists that the mystery man was not Robert Murat.





Robert Murat

Martin Smith, from Drogheda in Co Louth, was on holiday in Praia Da Luz with his family when they bumped into the man just before 10pm on May 3 last year.
The Smith family's suspicions were aroused because the man made no response when they asked if the barefoot child was asleep.
"He just put his head down and averted his eyes, which is very unusual in a tourist town at such a quiet time of the year," said Mr Smith.
Initially the Smith family thought nothing more of the encounter - and even the next day when the story broke they still didn't make the connection.
"We were home two weeks when my son rang me up and asked was he dreaming or did we meet a man carrying a child the night Madeleine was taken," said Mr Smith.
"We all remembered the same recollection, and I felt we should report it to the police.
"We've all been beating ourselves up that we should have made the link sooner, if only we'd remembered the next day.
"But the Portuguese police said you see these things on holiday all the time."
The Smiths did contact the Portuguese police once they had returned to Ireland, but say they have had no contact with the officers investigating the case since May last year.
"I rang the Portuguese police and they took a statement from me on the phone," said Mr Smith.
"They asked me to make a statement to the Gardai, which I did, and two days later Leicestershire police got on to us.
"My eldest son, Peter, my youngest daughter, Aoife, and I then flew to Luz to make a statement. They didn't seem to be the most efficient police you ever came across - and that was the last time we had any contact with the investigation.
"I don't know if this information will help the McCanns, but anything we can do to help try to solve it, we will.
"We were looking at all the commotion on Sky News and we really felt quite helpless. We had two grandchildren with us at the time and it had a terrible effect on them - they all wanted to sleep in the same room as us."
But Mr Smith is certain that the man he and his family saw that night was not Robert Murat, who is still officially an "arguido" in the Madeleine McCann investigation.
"I told police it was definitely not him because the man wasn't as big as Murat - I think I would have recognised him because I'd met him several times previously.
"He was wearing beige trousers and a darker top. We all put him in his early 40s and I didn't think he was Portuguese."
Mr Smith's sighting is similar to the one reported by Jane Tanner, a friend of the McCann family.
A spokesman for the McCanns said detectives from the Spanish agency hired to investigate the case are now hoping to speak to the Smiths.
Retired Mr Smith, 58, does not wish to appear on camera in order to protect his family from media intrusion.


//



//

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Mobira on Tue Dec 09, 2008 3:49 am

I have no doubt that Mr. Smith an honourable person and I sure that he actually saw SOMEBODY – but according to this http://diario.iol.pt/sociedade/maddie-mccann-caso-maddie-portugaldiario/979169-4071.html Mr. Smith was never more than 60 to 80 percent sure that the person he saw carrying a child towards the beach was Gerry, and the realisation only came “after seeing the images on television that livened his memory, on the 9th of September: when Gerry leaves the plane in the United Kingdom and turns his head down, M. Smith identifies the gesture as similar to what he saw in Praia da Luz four months earlier”.
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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:06 am

Mobira wrote:I have no doubt that Mr. Smith an honourable person and I sure that he actually saw SOMEBODY – but according to this http://diario.iol.pt/sociedade/maddie-mccann-caso-maddie-portugaldiario/979169-4071.html Mr. Smith was never more than 60 to 80 percent sure that the person he saw carrying a child towards the beach was Gerry, and the realisation only came “after seeing the images on television that livened his memory, on the 9th of September: when Gerry leaves the plane in the United Kingdom and turns his head down, M. Smith identifies the gesture as similar to what he saw in Praia da Luz four months earlier”.

You have me at a disadvantage, here, Mobira, because I can't read Portuguese (and am intensely jealous of you lot from elsewhere than Britain who write, and doubtless, speak, English so well!).

Can I ask whether the article you cite quotes Mr Smith's own words directly? My reason for asking is that the Sky article does, and specifically quotes Mr Smith as saying that he will do anything he can to help the McCanns. That would be a strange thing to say if he also thought he'd positively identified Gerry as the man carrying the child (which the Sky article doesn't remotely suggest he did).

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Mobira on Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:39 am

Honestbroker, no it doesn't quote Mr. Smith directly. Neither do they quote any sources but that is fairly normal. I tried to see if I could find and English translation (as I only really speak Spanish and French, which helps me understand most of what is written in Portuguese but not nearly enough to translate it correctly). I finally did, but only on the Joana Morais site, if you are interested to read a full translation, here is a link. http://joana-morais.blogspot.com/2008/08/mccanns-contacted-witness-that.html.

I was actually also about to add that the 60 to 80 percent "sure" has to be put into the context that recent studies have shown that even in cases where eye witnesses say they are 100 percent sure, they are in fact mistaken in over 50 percent of the cases!
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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:52 am

Mobira wrote:Honestbroker, no it doesn't quote Mr. Smith directly. Neither do they quote any sources but that is fairly normal. I tried to see if I could find and English translation (as I only really speak Spanish and French, which helps me understand most of what is written in Portuguese but not nearly enough to translate it correctly). I finally did, but only on the Joana Morais site, if you are interested to read a full translation, here is a link. http://joana-morais.blogspot.com/2008/08/mccanns-contacted-witness-that.html.

I was actually also about to add that the 60 to 80 percent "sure" has to be put into the context that recent studies have shown that even in cases where eye witnesses say they are 100 percent sure, they are in fact mistaken in over 50 percent of the cases!

Thank you again, Mobira.

I think this important because the core of Amaral's conspiracy theory that the establishment ganged up against and mugged him is that he was about to crack the case with this witness, Martin Smith. That seems to be an extreme stretch of the truth at most conservative.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Tinkerbell43 on Tue Dec 09, 2008 6:33 am

I brought this over from our other thread seeing as it is a point of discussion on here.



Sorry, 24 horrors was the best source I could find!

07.07.08. 24Horas - Translation.

Gonçalo Amaral placed a strong bet on this witness

Text: Carlos Tomas
July 07, 2008


When he was discharged, the former investigator of the Maddie Case was preparing to hear an Irishman, who was considered to be a very relevant witness. But the present investigators don't give him credibility

The statements from the Irish citizen who is considered to be a key witness in the Maddie case by Gonçalo Amaral, the man who lead the entire investigation, were not considered to be relevant by the investigators from the Polícia Judiciária who presently hold the process.

During the two depositions, both informal, the Irishman who is only known as "Smith" said that he saw the father of Madeleine McCann, Gerry, leaving the apartment in Praia da Luz, Lagos, Algarve, carrying a child on the day that the little girl disappeared. This, during the period of time between 6 and 10 p.m., precisely when Maddie disappeared.

"He was one of the witnesses that should be questioned within the rogatory letter that was sent to England. But, due to the fact that he is an Irish citizen, the authorities in Leicester, England, failed to contact him. The diligence was not deemed relevant, given the fact that he was informally heard at the beginning of the process and his depositions were highly contradictory", a senior officer who is connected to the investigations revealed to 24horas.

The same source specified: "First he said that he saw Maddie's father leaving the apartment carrying a child. But during a second hearing he said he was not certain that it was Gerry who carried the child. He even said he could not assert whether said person was actually carrying a human being. This type of witness is not admissible in court and they do not deserve credibility".

It is now up to prosecutor Magalhães e Meneses, who is analysing the process, to decide whether it is necessary to carry out further diligences, namely whether the hearing of the Irish citizen is necessary or not to reach a decision about the case, which apparently is to be archived concerning the suspicions of concealment of a cadaver and possible homicide that are pending on the McCanns.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Below is the report on the witness Mr. Smith, this can be found on page 34 of 57 from the official Police files. I couldnt copy and paste as the file is in PDF and that is too techincal for this dinosaur!


Further on the issue, the testimony of Martin Smith was considered pages 1606 and following, reporting the sighting of an individual, carrying a child in one of the streets that leads to the beach. It was said that the child could be Madeleine McCann, although it was never peremptorily stated. Sometime later, the witness alleged, that by its stance, the individual that carried the child could be Gerald McCann which was concluded when he see him descending the stairs from an aeroplane pages 2871, 3991 and following and 4135 and following. It was established that at the time this was mentioned, Gerald McCann was sitting at the table in the Tapas Restaurant.

Last edited by Tinkerbell43 on Wed Nov 19, 2008 10:50 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : grammer correction.)
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HB

Post by Tinkerbell43 on Tue Dec 09, 2008 6:56 am

Thanks for posting the Sky article.

So according to Amaral, prior to him being discharged he was preparing to hear an Irishman who was considered a relevant witness.

How come then according to Mr. Smith, his last contact with the police was in May 2007. If Amaral was preparing to meet Mr. Smith how come Mr. Smith didnt know anything about it.

LardyBoy is so bent he make a roundabout look straight.
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scent of death and Martin Smith's statement.

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 4:53 am

The two are not related, but I thought I'd lump them all in a single thread.

A number of anomlaies about scent of death. The most obvious one is that the scent was, apparently, detected on Kate's clothes but not Gerry's. Why? Particularly if, as Amaral would have us believe, Gerry buried Madeleine on the beach, that is quite startling. But it doesn't stop there. We know that Eddie alerted to the driver's side door of the Renault. Who did most of the driving? Why, Gerry! Of course you can't rule out that Kate drove the car, too, but then on all the occasions they were in the car together and Gerry was driving, Kate would have been in the passenger's seat. So why did not Kate transer the death scent to the front passenger's seat of the car?

Eddie is also alleged to have detected a death scent in the flower bed. The flower bed? Would the McCanns have completely dug up the flower bed, buried Madeleine, then rearranged it again? Surely not! How did a scent get there?

And so to Martin Smith's statement -- that smoking gun of Doctor Amaral's that was going to crack the case. Here is the statement from the official files:

Martin Smith: 2nd Statement 23/01/2008
HOLIDAY MAKER


<table class=tablebg id=table106 cellSpacing=1 width="100%"><tr class=row1><td vAlign=top><table id=table107 cellSpacing=5 width="100%"><tr><td>Main points

23/01/2008 Taken in County Louth by Garda (local police sergeant).

Letter from Sergeant:

Took another statement from Martin Smith as requested.
His wife did not want to make another statement.
Smith confirmed video clip that alerted him was BBC 10 o’clock news, 9th Sep 2007.
He (Smith) has been contacted by the press looking for stories.
He has been contacted by Brian Kennedy – to take part in photo-fit exercise.
He has given no stories and no photo-fit help.
His solicitor his written to 6 x press re misquoted material.
Evening Herald paid solicitor fees.
All papers printed an apology.
Photo appeared in another paper – action being taken.
Sergeant states he doesn’t believe Smith is courting the press. Believes he is genuine. Known locally. He’s a decent person.

Smith’s statement

Statement I made 26/05/2007 in Pt is correct.
Description of individual seen on May 3rd carrying a child:
Individual was alone. Average build, 5’10’’, short brown hair, about 40 yrs old. Beige trousers, dark top/jacket/blazer.
Saw Gerard [sic] McCann on the video clip going down plane steps carrying a child – struck me could have been same person. The way he turned his head down was similar to person I saw. Or may have been the way he was carrying the child.
60-80% sure Gerard McCann that we met carrying the child.
Contacted LP on 20th Sep 2007 with this info.
Spoke to all my family who were there that night – only one who felt the same was wife. Did not discuss until few days after seeing the video.


Don't be decieved, here. The second statement, transferred to the PJ via the Gardia Irish police, was simply to inform them that Mr Smith had been hassled by the British press. Mr Smith's initial (and important) statement, made on 26 May last year, is reproduced under the heading: Smith's statement.

Has anyone noticed the startling omission from the original statement? The time of the sighting is not given. Quite an important detail, I'd have thought. Amaral's smoking gun?
</TD></TR></TABLE></TD></TR></TABLE>


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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Pedro Silva on Fri Dec 19, 2008 6:11 am

More lies, more rubbish from Gonzo.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Guest on Fri Dec 19, 2008 6:42 am

Wasnt it established that Gerry was in actual fact at the Tapas restaurant when Martin Smith encountered this person carrying a child?
And witnesses besides the Tapas 7 verified this.
And Martin Smiths statement was ruled out?

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 7:25 am

Mulleena wrote:Wasnt it established that Gerry was in actual fact at the Tapas restaurant when Martin Smith encountered this person carrying a child?
And witnesses besides the Tapas 7 verified this.
And Martin Smiths statement was ruled out?

Apart from the files, I think pretty much the only thing established about Martin Smith's statement is that he complained about press coverage and received apologies from (according to the official files) six newspapers, who obviously withdrew their stories. It was probably from these that the report came about Gerry's alibi. I know, because I've seen it, that the Daily Mail is one of those papers.

What's interesting is that the Sky report I've given a link to before was not pulled and is still available to be read. That was filed (from memory) in April of this year, just a couple of months before the McCanns were officially cleared. That quotes Mr Smith direct. In that account, also, no time of the sighting is given. But it quotes Mr Smith as saying, simply, that the man he saw was not Murat. The only reference to Gerry and Kate is that he says he will be willing to help them in any way he can (an odd thing for him to say if he told the PJ he thought the man he saw was Gerry).

I'm wondering if the time of Mr Smith's sighting is proximal with Jane Tanner's. If that was so, that would be quite something. It would also give Gerry the added alibi of Jeremy Wilkins (with whom he was talking at that time, not in the tapas bar as originally reported).

But that's all guesswork, obviously. My main interest is why the timing of the siting is not given in the official files.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Guest on Fri Dec 19, 2008 7:52 am

I could only find one article in the Daily Mail re M.Smith and at no time did he say the man he saw resembled G.M Just that the man he saw matched Jane Tanners description.
Do we know if Tony Bennett has spoken to Mr Smith, isnt this one of his sickty reasons?
As for the death scent in the flower bed surely any number of reasons could of been possible, and none of them to do with death!!

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:00 am

Mulleena wrote:I could only find one article in the Daily Mail re M.Smith and at no time did he say the man he saw resembled G.M Just that the man he saw matched Jane Tanners description.

Is that one you've just found, Mulleena, or did you read it some time ago? The reason I ask is that I saw something on one site that gave just a few words (sufficient to establish that the paper was offering an apology to Mr Smith). For some reason, I'd have had to pay to read the full article. It wasn't the standard Mail site which is free.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Guest on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:09 am

There was no apology HB I just typed Martin Smith and Gerry McCann in the search engine.
It gave a short paragraph on Martin Smiths sighting being similar to Jane Tanners.
I never checked the date either DOH!!

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:14 am

Mulleena wrote:There was no apology HB I just typed Martin Smith and Gerry McCann in the search engine.
It gave a short paragraph on Martin Smiths sighting being similar to Jane Tanners.
I never checked the date either DOH!!

That answers my question, Mulleena. If the report is still on file, then clearly it's not been pulled and Mr Smith can't have had any objection to it. It's entirely feasible that they made an earlier report Mr Smith objected to and they pulled.

I'll see if I can find the link to the report I referred to earlier.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:21 am

Actually, the Sky report does give a time as just before 10.00 pm (2200) What was the time of Jane Tanner's sighting?

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by Guest on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:24 am

Thanks HB the article was dated 03/01/2008
It didnt give any times of sightings.

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by maria on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:32 am

HB

Smith sighting was 21:45ish, Jane's 21:15ish. No they do not coincide, never did.
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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:35 am

maria wrote:HB

Smith sighting was 21:45ish, Jane's 21:15ish. No they do not coincide, never did.

Thanks for that, Maria. But don't forget (unless you've seen different 'official files' from me) that the files don't give a time. All we are reliant on is press reports as to the time of the siting.

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A few things I noted about this

Post by dianeh on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:43 am

1. How is it that if the second report was made in Jan that Amoral knows about it before the files are opened, when it was covered under the secrecy act. This is proof that the law has been broken by Amoral and at least one other member of the PJ, as this information didnt just walk out of the station on its own.

2. Why did just Mr Smith and is wife think it was Gerry but not the rest of the family? And why did the wife fail to speak for herself. I think most likely because she was not convinced it was Gerry. If she really thought that, then she would have spoken to the police herself. And as an aside, it means nothing that Smith says his wife agreed with him. She might have just agreed it as a possibility and not as anything firm.

3. Gerry's face was very visible for much of the early part of the search for Madeleine. Mr Smith must have had some idea that it was Gerry early on. As far as I can see, the description he gives is very vague and could have been any one of a number of people, including Robert Murat who he rules out. Now, if he can be sure it wasnt Murat (perhaps he wasnt wearing glasses), then at the time he must have seen the person clearly enough to know if it was or wasnt Gerry.

4. And I am with HB on why is the time missing from the second report. Simply because it is irrelevant because it was already given. But since the first report by Smith contains the time, and it is confirmed that Gerry was in the Tapas bar at this time, then it means this second report is clearly just supposition by Smith. It needs to be remembered that Smith would not have been aware that it couldnt have been Gerry because he was in the Tapas bar. So that would mean the person who took the child, is similar in height, weight, age etc as Gerry. Smith would have made that report in good faith, and not to go after the McCanns. So if you remove the name Gerry from the report, he gives a more accurate description than previously. The thing is that after so long, he is most likely telling the police details from what he saw on the telly and from his imagination, not from his memory of that night.

Maria, are you sure about the times. Sadie, this means that you theories dont match. But I thought that the Smith's were not really certain of the time, so that would mean it could be within say a half hour window, which would make it between 9.30 and 10. If it were really closer to 9.30, then it does coincide with JT's sighting within 15 or 20 minutes. Perhaps the abductor hid out of site, waiting for the streets to clear, or maybe for further instructions before going further. As Sadie has said, the sighting of JT has the man going in a different direction than the Smith's sighting, so they cannot be at exactly the same time, they must be at least a few minutes (say 5 or 10) apart, just to cover the distance.

Maria, can you give confirmation of the time of Smith's sighting? Is a copy of Smith's original statement in the files?
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the time: the elephant in the room ...

Post by honestbroker on Fri Dec 19, 2008 7:36 pm

For our non-British friends, that is British idiom for an obvious but overlooked point.

The media does, in general, seem to have cottoned on to the timing as 2200 or just before. The Sky report, filed well after the other reports (May this year) quotes Mr Smith direct as saying all sorts of other things, but in reported speech says just before 10.00 (as the time of the sighting. Odds are that one reporter reported and the others copied it.

And the time 2200 does appear in the files, but not as the time of Mr Smith's sighting. Here it is:

Smith confirmed video clip that alerted him was BBC 10 o’clock news, 9th Sep 2007.

Have the press got the wrong end of the stick, somewhere, perhaps?

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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by maria on Sat Dec 20, 2008 8:10 am

HB, Diane

It was very clear since May last year the time when Mr. Smith met the man carrying the child. The exact time may not be in the files as it is true that PJ made sure that Gerry was at Tapas. Well, Gerry was not at Tapas when Jane saw her man. Hence, the reason I feel so sure that there is a gap between the sightings.
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Re: Martin Smith Statement

Post by honestbroker on Sat Dec 20, 2008 9:57 pm

maria wrote:HB, Diane

It was very clear since May last year the time when Mr. Smith met the man carrying the child. The exact time may not be in the files as it is true that PJ made sure that Gerry was at Tapas. Well, Gerry was not at Tapas when Jane saw her man. Hence, the reason I feel so sure that there is a gap between the sightings.

Well, Maria, it would be interesting to contrast the reports carried by our media about Mr Smith's sighting with the reports carried by your media. Ours didn't have Mr Smith identifying the man he saw as Gerry. My hunch is that at least some of your might have? Ordinarily, where there is descrepancy, you'd go to the official file for clarification. But (again, our press) reported that Mr Rebelo was absolutely appaled at the pot mess the records were in when he took over from Amaral.

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