Justice 4 ALL Madeleine McCann Family
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Another Travesty of Portuguese Justice

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Another Travesty of Portuguese Justice

Post by Tinkerbell43 on Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:09 am

I came across this article of another little girl that went missing in Portugal in 1990, not sure if any of you have read it before. In the 18 years since this little child initially disappeared it seems nothing much has changed. This is why there has to be a public inquiry into the investigation of Madeleine McCann.

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The abduction of a child by a stranger is, mercifully, a rare event: in Britain, there have been about seven cases a year since records were first kept in 1970. But it poses daunting challenges to investigators.

"In these circumstances, having close contacts in the community may be of limited help," said Mark Williams-Thomas, a former Surrey police detective and an expert in paedophile crime. "You need to progress scientifically. Above all, you must preserve the scene and every scrap of physical evidence."
It has been widely reported that in the hours and days after Madeleine went missing, the PJ failed to do this, reacting sluggishly to her disappearanceand allowing apartment 5A to become contaminated. It was not the first time the PJ has made such mistakes.

Thirty miles east of Praia da Luz lies the resort of Albufeira, where a collection of clifftop villas known as Val Novio was once a thriving development, favoured by British expats.
Now largely abandoned, it was there, on November 19, 1990, that Rachel Charles, aged nine, went missing.
Neil McKay, a Bafta-winning TV scriptwriter who has specialised in factual dramas about crime, was on holiday nearby with his father at the time. "We were sitting in a bar having a beer one evening," he recalled.
"This English guy came in, saying a little girl had disappeared two days earlier but the police were refusing to mount a proper search. He said her family wanted every British tourist or expat to meet on the beach at seven next morning to try to find her.
"so we went. There must have been more than 200 of us. Tragically, it didn't take long to find her body, hidden among some pines."
Len Port, now an Algarve publisher who covered the case for The Portugal News, said: "The police search was highly inefficient, as, frankly, was everything else about the case. The way the police handled it was desperately amateurish - and ultimately, a travesty of justice."
Just as they would later do with the McCanns, the PJ soon hit on a suspect who knew the victim and her family. But according to Port, who attended his trial, it had "no real evidence. It was an unjust trial".
The defendant was Michael Cook, a British expat businessman who had taken part in the search, and in 1992 he was convicted and sentenced to 19 years. Having protested his innocence, he was released in 2002. Last week, he told of his ordeal for the first time.
"This has ruined my life," he said. "I still carry the scars from the six times I was stabbed in prison; as for the times I had the s*** kicked out of me, I long ago lost count."
Following Cook's conviction, his then-Labour MP, Bob Spink, became involved in his campaign. In a Commons debate in 1992, he said: "The only hard evidence linking Cook to the murder was bogus" - a claim by an elderly gardener that he had seen Cook bundling Rachel into his car.
However, Spink said, the police had hidden the fact that tyre tracks left by Rachel's abductor "were of an entirely different type" from those that would have been made by Cook's vehicle.
The PJ, Spink told the Commons, claimed Cook confessed - something he has always denied - and that they had tortured him: "Cook appeared in court, with black eyes and a missing tooth, and he was deeply bruised.
"It is claimed that Cook was hung from an upstairs window by his feet, that his feet were beaten until he could not stand, that he was tied to a chair and beaten, that he was deprived of sleep and that a revolver was forced into his mouth and the trigger pulled in a mock execution."
The PJ also claimed Cook had a record as a paedophile, Spink went on. This, too, was "entirely bogus'. The trial judge had asked a PJ witness how he knew this: "The officer replied that someone, unnamed, had told him. The judge accepted that so-called 'evidence' as clear and unequivocal."
It emerged at the trial that while there was no forensic link between Rachel or her clothes and Cook's car, blood had been found under her fingernails - presumably that of her attacker. But when Cook's lawyers tried to obtain it to test it for DNA, they were told the samples had been "lost".
Cook told The Mail on Sunday: "I was with the PJ four days and they gave me no food nor let me go to the lavatory - I literally s*** myself and p****d myself. I was in that state when they first brought me to court.
"What I learnt about Portugal is that once convicted, you never get the chance to get it reversed, because they destroyed the evidence."
Spink, who is still MP for Castle Point, Essex, said yesterday that as the Madeleine case had unfolded, he had become increasingly concerned by the "disturbing parallels' between the way the PJ had dealt with Maddie and the murder of Rachel Charles.
"In both cases, there was incompetence at the outset. And then, having become convinced they had the right suspects, the police seem to have ignored other avenues of investigation - especially the possibility that both were abducted by a stranger."
After the death of Rachel Charles, it was not for a further 14 years that another girl went missing on the Algarve.
On September 12, 2004, Joana Cipriano, aged ten, failed to return to her home in Figueira, near Praia da Luz, from a shopping trip. The parallels with the McCann case are again disturbingly close.
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Hi Tinks

Post by Rosie on Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:22 am

This is spooky, just this morning when writing another couple of posts I was thinking about this case and wondering if I should include it in my posts.

To me there are so many unanswered questions about this case and how this man was convicted on circumstantial evidence, yet again. On one person who remained anonymous who gave testament that he saw this persons car in the vicinity and it turns out that tyre marks do NOT confirm that it was the perp's vehicle.

I am so glad you mentioned this!

The man convicted of murdering Rachel is now back in Britain and swears to this day he did NOT murder that dear little girl.

Removing from the equation "well he would say that", what is actually left? Again just highly speculative circumstantial evidence on which a conviction for such a heinous crime was given.

You are right Tinks, not an awful lot seems to have changed since the murder of Rachel.

I wonder how many 'suspect' convictions for this kind of crime there actually are in Portugal?

I am with you 100%, this is why there 'MUST' be a full and open public inquiry, into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

It may be the only way that the truth can be got at and as I have said, I really do not care who it brings down in the process, it can bring down, celebrity, police, judiciary, local businessmen, doctors, whoever, but the truth must be had.

If the antis really do want the truth to come out, then why are they not backing calls for a public inquiry?
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Re: Another Travesty of Portuguese Justice

Post by vee8 on Mon Nov 10, 2008 1:47 am

That made me sick, to the pit of my stomache.
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TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE

Post by Royal on Tue Nov 11, 2008 7:08 am

An interesting and well written post Tinks, What the hell is wrong with Portugal, if the police can't sort out their own stinking mess then it's time their government stepped in and cleansed the whole lot out!
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