Madeleine McCann: parents’ risky libel case against Amaral begins in Portugal
The Daily Express lead with news:
“BRAVE MUM KATE FACES NEW ORDEAL IN PORTUGUESE COURT ROOM”
Lest “Brave” and “mum” not place the Express squarely on Kate McCann’s side in a legal spat, the paper adds:
Madeleine’s mother will face her police tormentor in court
This tormentor is called Goncalo Amaral, the Portuguese copper who investigated the child’s vanishing and then wrote a book about it.
The brave mother will face fresh agony in the Portuguese capital Lisbon, where she is launching a court bid to silence her tormentor Goncalo Amaral over allegations he made about the fate of the youngster. Former GP Kate and husband Gerry, both 45, are seeking £1million in damages from the former detective they say made their lives hell.
Amaral, 56, claims the couple lied about the events surrounding Madeleine’s disappearance.
He went on to write a book in which he alleged Madeleine died in the family’s holiday apartment and her parents covered up the tragedy.
Kate McCann and her husband Gerry deny that accusation. So. They want to silence Mr Amaral. One problem is that in Portugal freedom of speech is taken very seriously. It was not so very far back ion history that Portugal was a dictatorship. Freedom to way the unsayable has been had won.
As ever the Express reminds us that Mr McCann is a “heart consultant Gerry”, who will “remain at the couple’s home in Rothley, Leicestershire, to look after their eight-year-old twins Sean and Amelie”.
Michael Wright, the husband of Kate’s cousin Anne-Marie, will tell the Lisbon hearing that Amaral’s “poisonous lies” nearly destroyed the family. Kate agreed to attend court at the last moment on the advice of her Portuguese lawyer Isabel Duarte.
A source close to the McCanns said yesterday: “Kate’s lawyers felt that one of Madeleine’s parents should be there in person. Kate agreed to go while Gerry looks after the twins. “She is not expected to give evidence but will be sitting in the courtroom.”
The paper than quotes a “McCann source”, who cannot be named for reasons we are not told:
“They have been told that every word they have said against Mr Amaral, in response to his ludicrous claims, will be challenged. Lawyers on both sides tried to settle out of court but it was not to be.”
One person is named, however:
The McCann’s spokesman Clarence Mitchell said last night: “Kate and Gerry remain confident they will win. They have a very strong case.”
The Irish Independent leads with very different headline:
Maddie’s mum to face top detective in trial
Amaral is a top detective? Well, he was.
Kate McCann will come face to face with the former police chief she and her husband Gerry accuse of hampering the search for their missing daughter Madeleine when their libel case against him starts in Lisbon today.
Mrs McCann’s attendance in court is understood to be against the advice of Scotland Yard detectives who are attempting to begin their own investigation in the Algarve to solve the six-year mystery.
The couple are suing detective Goncalo Amaral for £1m (€750,000) over allegations he made about the fate of Madeleine, who disappeared from an apartment in Praia da Luz shortly before her fourth birthday in May 2007.
The Indy might want to look again at that exchange rate.
It is feared Mrs McCann’s presence in Portugal will provoke a media circus and further aggravate Portuguese authorities as the Scotland Yard team seeks co-operation to carry out their inquiries on Portuguese soil.
A source said: “Met police are worried it will create a bigger platform for Mr Amaral and his supporters to spout more bile and could damage their own inquiries in the country.”
This could go badly for the McCanns.
The Star says of Amaral:
KATE McCann will today come face-to-face with the disgraced police detective who accused her of covering up daughter Madeleine’s death.
The BBC sums up best:
Amaral, the detective who initially led the inquiry into Madeleine’s disappearance, is expected to argue that under Portuguese law he is entitled to make the claims published in The Truth Of The Lie. The former officer was removed from the Portuguese investigation in October 2007 after criticising British police.
READ: It’s a high-risk strategy in Portugal…