Madeline McCann: Karsten Mayer is the Media’s victim of the moment
ONE day all the men and women linked in print to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann will form a therapy group. Karsten Mayer is the current poor sod in the news. We heard that he and his family were staying on a campsite in southern Spain, a few days after the child went missing in Portugal. A “witness” says she saw a child who looked “identical” to Madeleine on the site. The witness was suspicious that the child wore the same clothes a whopping two day’s running. Karen Sisson, the apparent witness, says the child looked “groggy” and “alienated” from the rest of the group.
The Sun published this as being a “new clue” to Maddie. Sisson, we were told, was a “mum of two” and British. Twice we are told that the people with the identikit Maddie are Germans.
A witness said the groggy-looking child seemed alienated from the German family she was staying with in a caravan.
Below a photo of the docket for a campsite booking, the Sun wrote:
Clue 2 … records show the family paid out to bring one more child than expected
The campsite says it does keep records for children under 2 who go free.
The Daily Express painted an intriguing picture of life on the “sprawling” campsite:
The couple with the children are believed to have checked in for their near-two-week stay under the name Karsten Meyer. Mr Meyer is thought to be German and was reported to be driving a blue Mercedes Vito people carrier with a number plate starting with BE, letters which went out of official use 38 years ago.
It has sparked concern that the number plate may have been fake because Vitos were first produced much later, in 1996.
Campsite records show someone using the name Karsten Meyer checked in on May 6 and stayed until May 18 with his wife and a child, not three youngsters.
This chap is using the name Karsten Meyer because it is, er, his name. Mr Mayer is 41. The Mail says he’s a Swiss national. Bild says he’s a German who lives in Switerland. Mr Meyer is Swiss, born and bred. The car’s plates are registered in Bern (BE). He has never met the missing child in his life. The child he was seen with was his daughter. With his name plonked on the news cycle, Mayer tells Blick newspaper in Switzerland:
“I am turning myself over to police before these media reports get me arrested.”
Nice one, British tabloid media. Even today the Sun produces the suggestive headline: “Maddie lookalike driver in cop quiz.”
Back to Mr Mayer:
“I did have a girl around about Maddie’s age in the car – she was my own daughter who also happens to have blonde coloured hair and was about the same age as Maddie at the time…I was at the camping ground with my family. It is really unbelievable that I am some kind of suspect because we read about Maddie’s disappearance on a notice at the campsite. We were shocked and we felt for the parents. It is quite possible that my daughter appeared distant. She was tired after a very long road trip.”
“We spent 12 days at the camping ground we journeyed further around Portugal. I don’t think a kidnapper would have done that.”