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Anorak | Madeleine McCann: The Tabloid Dog Pack, Kate McCann’s Diary And Shannon Matthews

Madeleine McCann: The Tabloid Dog Pack, Kate McCann’s Diary And Shannon Matthews

by | 28th, July 2008

MADDIE WATCH – Anorak’s at-a-glance guide to press coverage of Madeleine McCann, Kate McCann, Gerry McCann and Robert Murat

PRESS GAZETTE: “Furious lawyer attacks tabloids’ ‘pack-dog’ mentality over stories”

Read all about it in the Star, Sun, Mirror etc.

Louis Charalambous represented Robert Murat in his libel action against eleven tabloid newspapers. Two other claimants in the same case, Sergey Malinka and Michaela Walczuch, were awarded apologies and a “substantial six-figure settlement”.

Charalambous tells the Press Gazette:

“Having to capitulate, apologise and pay up is not the end of it. The trust in those titles ebbs away among their combined readership of 15 million. In particular, readers of The Sun, Mirror, Express and Star were told lie after lie about my clients. It brings into question how much more of their paper’s news coverage they can rely on…

“There was a pack-dog mentality here and my clients and their families were the prey. The children of Robert and Michaela, little girls, one not much older than Madeleine, were hounded and had to go in and out of their homes with coats over their heads.

“I’d like to invite the editors of the worst of these titles to have tea and cake with them and explain why they let their journalists and photographers harass them. They are now recovering but the effects are long-lasting.”

Tea with lawyers? Take care. Bring a tape recorder and a copy of the invitation. Leave wallet at home. But what about the story, the single-thread story? What about our Maddy?

“Journalistically this was a story without legs: child goes missing, no idea of her fate and foreign coppers not leaking to their trusted hacks in the time-honoured way. Reporters then developed lines of the story and ‘creatively’ adopted the rubbish coming out of the Portuguese tabloid press.”

Case closed. What what about Murat?

Max Clifford, no longer representing Murat, says:

“If you think that the McCanns got £500,000 from one newspaper group, he went after 11 newspapers – and they were far more vicious to him than they were to the McCanns.”

Maybe Murat wasn’t after the money, just closure? Maybe the papers got of lightly?

“If you want people to believe you are innocent you can forget about it. He and his family are going to have to live with this for the rest of their lives.”

So says a professional PR not in the least bit bitter about being dropped by Murat.

THE SUN: “Kate’s Maddie diaries leaked”

EXCERPTS from Kate McCann’s diary covering the first agonising weeks after daughter Maddie vanished have emerged.

Did you see them? In case you didn’t, here they are:

They show that the desperate mum left messages asking PM Gordon Brown to “increase political pressure” to aid the search. After he phoned 40-year-old Kate and husband Gerry, she noted that Mr Brown was “nice and supportive” — but that she “felt a bit emotional after”.

DAILY MIRROR: “Kate and Gerry McCann: Portuguese cops’ hunt for Maddie ‘pathetic’”

Portuguese police knocked on just 443 doors in the failed hunt for missing Madeleine McCann.

That a lot?

There are 7,000 homes in Praia da Luz…

No door unknocked…

In stark contrast, British police probing the disappearance of Shannon Matthews earlier this year knocked on 5,000 doors and searched 2,000 houses. Nine-year-old Shannon was found in 24 days, whereas Portuguese police have stopped looking for Madeleine after 14 months.

But the police door knocking wasn’t what found Shannon Matthews. The rozzers responded to a tip off from a neighbour of one Paul Donovan.

Also, Shannon Matthews’ mother, Karen Matthews, is under arrest for her alleged part in her daughters’ disappearance. Kate McCann is innocent. So what do the two matters have in common? Or is this Tabloid Bingo?

A friend of the McCanns said: “The 443 doors would barely cover 500 yards from the apartment where Madeleine was taken. That is shocking and unacceptable.”

Is it?

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Posted: 28th, July 2008 | In: Broadsheets, Madeleine McCann, Tabloids Comments (325) | TrackBack | Permalink