11 Dec 2007

BETTY - THANKS FOR THOSE LOVELY WORDS

"Viv had a passion for Madeleine and for the right to know the truth, that is what I liked about her. As we all do, I know, but my experience of Viv was that she had, yes, passion and a humour and even if i disagreed with her she was gracious about it"

A passsion for little Madeleine, and all defenceless little children, the truth, a good sense of humour and treating those who demonstrate respect to me in a similar way are all things I try to aspire to. Your kind words really touched me. Thanks!

I really miss my conversations with you and many other wonderful people on the DE forum.

Laughter is essential to tbe business of living, and being fit enough mentally to fight a just cause - wihout it we become vicious, depressed and unpleasant. Those who decry it should really try learning to laugh sometimes.

Kind Regards
Viv

4 comments:

CKH_formerly_of_DE-forum said said...

Hey Viv -

I was wondering if the rest of the anti- gang had seen the following post from the Mirror Forum by a member who calls himself "theAuthor" -- here's the link: http://forums.mirror.co.uk/viewtopic.php?t=31392&highlight= The comment is regarding the phone/text messages between Gerry and OBrien in June where the poster outlines his hypothesis I've what happened and where everyone was. It seems to be a more thoughtful post than many of the theories/opinions we've read because this guy actually created a "bibliography" to document the source of his info. I found theAuthor's theory quite fascinating and I wanted to share the link in case y'all might have missed it. The post is hellish long, but definitely worth reading.

Cheers!
CKH

felicity said...

Hiya CKH

Really sorry about the delay in replying only just noticed your post when checking my emails to make sure I didnt miss any and I flipping did - sorry!

Well I just had a look and it is a real essay so I nicked it! Going to bed min because hosp tomorrow early am so will have a good read and respond tomorrow afternoon/eve Some people sure do work hard on this case - dont think I made that much effort for uni essays!

kind regards viv and thanks for referring me to such good piece of work

Here it is :
--------------------------------
theAuthor: Madeleine - A DOCTOR CALLS AND DARKNESS FALLS
Goto page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 Next




Posted: Mon Dec 10, 2007 11:28 pm Post subject: theAuthor: Madeleine - A DOCTOR CALLS AND DARKNESS FALLS

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Another Post: Monday 10 December 2007, as midnight beckons. Being six months to the day that a certain phone call was made

Greetings Gentle Reader



A DOCTOR CALLS AND DARKNESS FALLS


INTRODUCTION

This post is concerned with the mobile phone call between Dr McCann and Dr O’Brien that is reported to have taken place on 10 June, together with related matters.

The reader may recall that in the past, the author has proposed that almanac or similar information was used to determine the timing of the abduction (whether staged or not) and also to fix the timing of the “last photo”.

Given that successful elements in an MO are often repeated, how suitable was 10 June for the undertaking of clandestine activities? The following questions suggest themselves:

1. Do periods of extreme darkness (dark slots) occur during the night?

2. Could a person with access to almanac type information easily identify such slots?

3. How might these slots relate to events from 9-11 June?

The author will seek to answer these points later in the post.

But first let us look at the elements of the story.


OF PHONE CALLS AND BARNS

It was the Sunday Express of 2 December that first broke the news in two separate articles:


First:

“Gerry and Friend Face Quiz on 'Mystery' Call”

-From Matt Drake in Praia Da Luz and James Murray [1]

(extract)

“A CLOSE friend of Kate and Gerry McCann who was holidaying with them when Madeleine vanished will be questioned by Portuguese police this week over a "mystery" phone call.

“Dr Russell O'Brien, 36, has come under investigation after a team of telephone surveillance officers highlighted a mobile phone call made to the missing four-year-old's father just over a month after she disappeared.

“Portuguese detectives now believe that a phone call between Gerry McCann, 39, and Dr O'Brien is the missing link in Madeleine's disappearance and could help find her body.

“Investigators are focusing on the exact whereabouts of Dr O'Brien when the call was made on June 10.

“Last night it was unclear exactly what was said during the debated call but it is understood that key words aroused police suspicions.” (…)

“The Sunday Express has learned Mr McCann told police the call, 38 days after Madeleine vanished, was made within 4km of the Mark Warner resort in Praia da Luz where the party were staying but technicians working on the mobile phone network have dismissed his claim after examining records.

“It has also emerged that each member of the "Tapas Nine" was placed under surveillance after British communications experts arrived in the Algarve at the end of May. (…)” [1]


And second:

“Blood on Towel May Be from Madeleine”

-From Matt Drake in Praia Da Luz and James Murray [2]

(extract)

“THE hunt for Madeleine McCann was last night centred on a disused barn near Praia da Luz, where police found a towel possibly stained with the fouryear-old's blood.

“Fibres found on the towel allegedly match fibres from the hire car rented by Maddie's parents, Kate and Gerry McCann.

“Portuguese detectives discussed the breakthrough when they met police and a Crown Prosecution Service official last week in Leicester.

“Today, for the first time, the Sunday Express can shed light on the new avenue police are pursuing in the hope of a breakthrough in the baffling case.

“Based on fresh information from a mobile phone surveillance, police began a search of an area in the south east of the resort.

“They came across a towel, with an Aztec design, by a disused barn in a remote area near Praia da Luz.

“Portuguese sources say forensic scientists used a substance called luminol to look for blood deposits and found three sites on the edges of the towel.

“From the sites they tested the blood deposits to see if there was a match with Madeleine McCann's DNA.

“Although the samples were not good quality the scientists were able to do what is called low copy analysis which showed there was "moderate" support to suggest the deposits matched Madeleine's blood.

“The results were not conclusive and are not regarded as being strong enough to be presented as evidence in any court case.

But close analysis of the towel revealed fibres which were not made of the towel material.

“The fibre fragments were microscopically examined against fibres found in the boot of the Renault Scenic car hired by the McCanns 25 days after Maddie vanished.

“Portuguese police sources say there was "strong support" that the fibres found on the towel matched fibres from the boot of the car.

“One possibility being considered by the Portuguese detectives was that the towel had at some point been in the boot of the Renault Scenic car, which would explain how fibres had got on it. (…)”


THE STORY DRIBBLES OUT

Over the next few days, a piece at a time, further information appeared in the press. This has not always been helpful to the reader, and, at the time of writing, the story to emerge remains hazy, and incomplete, not to mention self-contradictory.

For example, try the following quiz:

1. In relation to the mobile phone call, did:

a. Dr O’Brien call Dr McCann [1], or did

b. Dr McCann call Dr O’Brien? [5, 6]


2. Dr McCann and Dr O’Brien, we are told, are 25 km apart [3, 4], but was Dr McCann:

a. 28 km from Praia da Luz [5, 7], or

b. at least 28 km from Praia da Luz [8]

c. 40 km from Praia da Luz? [6]


3. Are the Police primarily interested in the location of:

a. Dr O’Brien? [1], or

b. Dr McCann [4, 5, 6, 7,]


4. The barn, we are told, is located in a remote area. But is it:

a. Near (or close) to Praia da Luz [2, 7]

b. some distance from Praia da Luz? [5]


5. And where is the barn? Is it :

a. SE of Praia da Luz – placing it in the sea [2]

b. In an unspecified direction [1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8a & 8b]

c. neither of the above?


Links to the above:

[1] Sunday Express, 2 December 2007, Matt Drake and James Murray:
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/pub.....isRss=true

[2] Sunday Express, 2 December 2007 (separate article by) James Drake and James Murray:
http://www6.lexisnexis.com/pub.....isRss=true

[3] Sun, 3 December 2007, Veronica Lorraine and Neil Syson:
http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/ho.....535992.ece

[4] El Mundo, 3 December 2007, Duarte Levy (as posted by Paulo Reis in his Gazeta Digital blog of 5 December):
http://gazetadigitalmadeleinecase.blogspot.com/

[5] Daily Star, 7 December 2007, Jerry Lawton:
http://www.dailystar.co.uk/new.....bile-clue/

[6] Daily Mail, 7 December 2007, anon:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pag.....ge_id=1770

[7] Daily Express, 7 December 2007, David Pilditch:
http://www.express.co.uk/posts.....-to-friend

[8a] Correio da Manhã, 8 December 2007, Ângela Lopes com PM:
http://www.correiomanha.pt/not.....&p=200

[8b] Li’s post giving translation for the above:
http://forums.mirror.co.uk/vie.....072#786072


WHAT TO MAKE OF THIS?

Seemingly, the information has been drip-fed to the media over the last week. It is certainly about police activity. We cannot be certain as to whether it originated from an official, if ‘off the record’ police source, but this seems likely.

Initially, the story about the barn was presented as if only semi-linked to the one about the phone call [1, 2]. Later, they become more firmly related. Drop-by-drop, more information emerges. Much seems incomprehensible. The barn cannot be 25 km south east of Praia da Luz – at least, not unless Noah’s Ark has been re-commissioned. Some facts, apparently incompatible, may not be. For example, Dr McCann could be both 28 km and 40 km from Praia da Luz if the first was “as the crow flies” (almost said “on a line of sight”) and the second the distance by road.

Some of the reports [e.g. 6] refer to “conversation”, but could this just be an assumption that the earlier reports of “key words” referred to a voice-call rather than text.

Some of the contradictions, such as who made the call, may be an artefact of transmission - as the information was passed from source to journalist, Perhaps difficulties in translation played a part. On the other hand, someone may be playing games. It’s reminiscent of other episodes, for example, the ‘missing time’ reported for the afternoon and evening of 3 May – this has been a flexible measure, ranging from several hours to a few minutes.

One is tempted to suppose that this might be a new game for Christmas. Could it be a little gift from the PJ? Perhaps one intended to revive the jaded palate of those surfeited with ‘Musical Chairs in the Tapas’, ‘Pass the Bundle’, and ‘Buggy Racing’. If so, what should we call it? How about ‘Spin the Bottle’ – given the dearth of information - as good a way as any of barn hunting, one might think.

Perhaps not – the author merely jests.


POLICE TACTICS

Working on the assumption that this information originates from the police, it seems much more likely that the drip-feed is carefully targeted on one or more of the Tapas 9. Perhaps it is Dr O’Brien that the PJ have in their sights. Possibly they think that some of the others have gone (or may go) wobbly. But we cannot know this.

If this slow release of information is about rattling the T9 cage prior to re-questioning, it starts to make sense.

Let us set Dr O’Brien and other of the Tapas Nine aside for one moment. Look at a trickle-down approach from the standpoint of anyone with something to hide:

- They (the police) know A, and B - but have they made a connection between them yet?

- They’ve got C completely wrong

- Buth they seem to know D

- They’ve got C right after all!

- What do they know about Z, that’s the big question?

- Am I going to end up taking the rap for Q?

Not very subtle perhaps, but for someone already fearful about other matters, the additional pressure might cause a tipping point to be reached.


A SECRET MEETING

The timing is of interest. Was the information released to coincide with a meeting of some or all of the Tapas Nine and their advisors? While there is (as yet) no hard evidence of such a meeting, as many posters have pointed out a potential opportunity existed with the McCanns - as reported by the Liverpool Daily Post [9a] - away from home, visiting relatives.

Now, the author wrote the above paragraph before the Mail published the story about the Tapas Nine’s secret meeting secret appeared in today’s Mail (10 December).

“The McCanns and the friends they were dining with when Madeleine vanished have met for the first time since that night seven months ago, it has been revealed.

“The Tapas Nine had a highly emotional and ‘deeply sad’ reunion at a hotel near Kate and Gerry's home in Rothley, Leicestershire.

“The willingness of the friends to meet dispels claims that some of them had fallen out with the couple and wanted to change their witness statements given to Portuguese police. (…)

“A source close to the McCanns said the meeting, which took place last month, was kept secret because of the huge interest it would have generated.

“It was a show of solidarity under police claims that one or two had wanted to change their stories," said a source. (…)”. [9b]


It seems highly likely that the PJ knew about the meeting in advance, wished to advise the group of this, and at the same time take the opportunity to open up any perceived lines of fracture within the group.

By way of example only, let us develop one possibility. The reports imply is that the call /barn axis is a new development. Yet, clearly, this cannot be taken literally. For Dr McCann to make wrong claims about the location of the call, he must have been asked about this. Likewise, it follows that the PJ must have had reason to ask. It is difficult to see how the questioning could have occurred later than Saturday, 8 September, the outcome of which led to his designation as arguido.

It appears that Dr McCann found those questions an ordeal [10a]. Is it possible that when he originally briefed the other members of the party about the questioning, and (by implication therefore) the extent of Police knowledge, his account was less than complete? If the PJ know or suspect this, they might very well consider this to be a fault-line worth jemmying.

Was anyone’s cage rattled? How did the secret meeting go? Again, we do not know. But if the photograph of Dr Kate McCann published in to-day’s Mail (10 December) is anything to go by, the answer is “Not very well”. Quite frankly, she looks shattered. [10b]


[9a] Link to Liverpool Daily Post article:
http://www.liverpooldailypost......-20192795/

[9b] Link to Daily Mail article:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pag.....ge_id=1770

[10a] Link to photographs of Dr McCann before and after questioning, see day 128 of this link:
http://www.mccannfiles.com/id29.html

[10b] Link to Daily Mail photograph of Dr McCann:
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/.....ives+will+'go+too+easy'+on+the+McCanns,+claim+Portuguese+police/article.do


WHAT WAS THE PHONE CALL ABOUT?

The article in the Sunday Express cited above [1] refers to the content of the phone call only in a hazy way:

“Portuguese detectives now believe that a phone call between Gerry McCann, 39, and Dr O'Brien is the missing link in Madeleine's disappearance and could help find her body.

“Last night it was unclear exactly what was said during the debated call but it is understood that key words aroused police suspicions.”

Assuming the article is accurate in this, and taking the above as whole, it seems reasonable to infer that the PJ believe that some kind of information concerning Madeleine passed from one party to the other. But whether this touches upon a place (for example her whereabouts), or an activity (her disinterment, transportation, burial, disposal, or final destruction), we cannot know. In fact, of course, the call may not refer directly to Madeleine as such. It could refer to clothes or other artefacts connected with her in some way; it could refer to third party involvement. There are many possibilities.


THE TIME FRAME

Now, a telephone call can refer to the now, the past, or the yet to come. Let us seek to develop this.

We are given the date of the call (10 June) but no hint as to its timing. A telephone call, described as having taken place on 10 June, could have occurred at any time between midnight, 9 June and midnight 10 June. The Sunday Express article [1] points to ‘key words’ as alerting the PJ. But a phone call at an unusual time might also arouse suspicion.

Was the call made at night?

How about the dead of night - on a very dark and moonless night?

Of course, we cannot confirm this as we do not know the time of the call, but it’s worth further thought. However, before developing this idea, there are two other pieces of information relating to location that we should consider.


THE DIARY FOR 9 AND 10 JUNE

Extracts from Dr McCann’s blog [11] inform us:

09 June

“Kate and I had a slightly busier day on the media front than expected. We did a short press interview for the Irish Sunday papers, mainly to thank the Irish for their fantastic level of support. We followed that with one for the British Sundays …

“After this we headed down to Sagres which is the very most southwestern tip of Portugal. There is a very nice beach and we had lunch with the family.

“After returning from the beach we did the Irish version of Crimewatch-‘Crimecall’. (…)“


10 June

“(…) We drove up to Lisbon late this afternoon to catch a flight to Casablanca where embassy officials will meet us. We were surprised to learn that a 20 seat propeller plane was sent instead of the larger aircraft. Luckily Kate, Clarence and I got squeezed on (…)“

[11] Link to Dr McCann’s blog entry:
http://www.mccannfiles.com/id13.html

The reference to Sagres on 9 June rings bells. It is the southwest corner not only of the Algarve, but also Portugal, and for that matter mainland Europe. It is about 20-21 km from Praia da Luz. However, if one expands the location to - let’s call it - the “Sagres area”, it is possible to get about 25km from Praia da Luz. And, of course, if one measures the distance to a location, say, 4 km to the east of Praia da Luz, it’s quite easy to get the distance to extend to 28 km.

Having said that, we should avoid jumping to conclusions. The distances may be relevant, they may not be. The trip could be perfectly innocent; it could be part of an illusion - a deliberate false trail.

Turning to 10 June, the Drs McCann drove to Lisbon to catch a flight to Casablanca, Morocco. According to the blog they left late afternoon. Quite compatibly, Correio da Manhã has them leaving Luz “by 4.30 pm” [8a, 8b]. They are reported as arriving at Casablanca on 10 June, although interestingly enough, we don’t know whether this is 10 June (Portugal) or 10 June (Morocco) – Morocco being an hour behind Portuguese local time.

Photographs [12] purport to show them filling in the police record upon their arrival in Casablanca on June 10th, 2007. Admittedly, they seem to be doing this at some sort of customer-service survey desk, but we’ll let that pass – perhaps they didn’t have a pen between the three of them. Yes, that must be it. Otherwise they would have completed the form on the plane like the rest of us. Wouldn’t they?

And what a funny thing to photograph! Do the readers of this post record such things for posterity? But let’s not labour the point. It undoubtedly establishes an alibi, should one ever come in handy. But why on earth should it?

[12] Link to one such photo (move pointer over photo, or click, for caption): http://www.daylife.com/photo/0.....casablanca

For the author, there have always been questions about the flight to Casablanca, particularly in terms of timing and itinerary. He does not speculate that the received information is wrong (although it has to be said that in this case, almost anything seems possible). It’s more that it all seems so inconvenient. First there’s a long drive to Lisbon, then an evening flight to Casablanca. The author has not been able to retrieve details of the flight, but assuming that they did arrive on the 10th, they cannot have arrived much before midnight (whether referring to Portugal or Morocco time). Then of course, they would have had to reach whatever accommodation had been arranged, and settle in, if only for bed. Even with an extra hour’s lie-in because of the time difference (Morocco being one hour behind Portugal [13] on the date in question), one would not have thought this the best start to an important foreign visit.

It’s almost as though Casablanca was chosen because it involved flying via Lisbon, and Lisbon places the Drs McCann (by road) about 187miles (301 km) or 3 – 3.5 hours away from the Algarve before nightfall. If we are talking of around midnight on 10 June, then, of course, Casablanca places them (as the crow flies) some 250 miles (400 km) and 7al hours away. [14, 15]

[13] Link to time zone:
http://www.timeanddate.com/wor.....&p2=60


[14] Distance and time by road (PdL to Lisbon):
http://routeplanner.rac.co.uk/.....1e89d277b7

[15] Distance, direct line, (Faro to Lisbon):
http://www.mapcrow.info/cgi-bi.....43640%2C04


UNDER COVER OF DARKNESS

Let us now return to our speculation about the time of the call

It is worth exploring whether the call was made at night, or whether the conversation related to things happening (in the past, present, or future), or, in deed both.

The broad drift of the reports in the press is that Dr McCann has claimed to the police that the relative locations of him and Dr O’Brien, during the call, were other than they actually were. It is, of course, possible that Dr McCann holds this view sincerely, but is mistaken.

However, the newspapers report that the PJ believe that there are questions to answer in relation to the call, and that they are encouraged in this view by key words.

Now, if people have reason to conceal or create confusion about their real whereabouts, they may feel it desirable for there to be no witnesses. A “remote” (maybe “isolated” would be a better descriptor) location is a plus, but it is not without risks. In such a place, if you are observed, you are not only conspicuous, but also noteworthy, and possibly memorable. A solution, perhaps the obvious one, is to go about your clandestine activity at night, preferably a night with no moon.


TWO DARK SLOTS

It helps if we think of 10 June in terms of its 24-hour clock. Then of course we can see that it has two periods of night. These are from 00.00 hrs to sunrise, and from sunset to 24.00 hrs. The timing of the call and /or its substance could reference to these periods.

In this case, the nights of 9-10 June and 10-11 June are excellent for clandestine activity. Two time slots offer themselves as immediate candidates (for the event /activity, that is, not necessarily the telephone call). These are periods when, discounting any artificial lighting, it was totally dark, i.e. no twilight, and no moon – only starlight. Many forum members are city dwellers, and may forget just how dark an unlit, isolated spot can be on a moonless night. The author rarely asks readers to take his word on trust (why should they believe him?), but for once he will break his rule. Believe the author – it’s dark!

The two dark slots are:

1. 09.59 pm, 9 June to 02.33 am 10 June (some 4.5 hours)

2. 10.00 pm 10 June to 03.02 am 11 June (some 5 hours)

If you wish to go about unseen, then the nights of 9-10 June and 10-11 June commend themselves as very good times for this.

Strictly speaking, the above times relate to Faro, the regional centre of the Algarve. For Faro, this type of information, and that given in the illumination timeline in the appendix, is readily available, either online, or via an almanacs, tide-tables or similar. If you want the times for Praia da Luz or Sagres, add two or three minutes.


A CONJECTURE

We must always bear in mind the following:

- The whole story may be a fabrication

- The reports may be more-or-less accurate, but of no consequence

- The reports may be more-or-less accurate, but the events described are only of consequence as an illusion.


The above, notwithstanding, various scenarios could be envisioned as being reasonably consistent with the received facts - at least, insofar as the latter is possible. One such follows:

1. On 9 June, the Drs McCann visit Sagres. We are told, “we had lunch with the family”. But whether other people were there as well we cannot tell.

Could the underlying reason have been to reconnoitre the area, (the barn possibly), prior to some activity planned for 10 June?

Alternatively, was the visit could undertaken so as to place the Drs McCann at some distance from some other reconnoitre or activity – perhaps something happening the other side of Praia da Luz?

2. Possibly sometime, on the night of 9-10 June, a dress rehearsal takes place to see if the barn (via rough tracks etc) can be accessed in the dark.

In relation to the phone call, it’s difficult to pinpoint the timing or even to be sure whether it happened during this period. But, making an informed guess, how about roughly 2 am, 10 June?

3. Actual activity at the barn takes place on the night of 10-11 June, between 10 pm and 3 pm. The Drs McCann are either in Lisbon, airborne, or in Casablanca.

4. The Drs McCann are photographed as they fill in their police identification information form on arrival at Casablanca Airport


The author would not claim to be strongly attached to the above. He is aware that there are many other possibilities. No doubt members of the forum have their own ideas.

But for the present gentle reader, as ever, the author leaves you to your thoughts


Your - author

Sebastien said...

I have never read such crap as is on your rubbish blog. Unbelievable how you have taken things out of context and changed them to mean what you want them to mean.

Have you got nothing better to do than to run people down who arent of the same opinion as yourself?

Absolutely pathetic.

felicity said...

Hi Sebastian

Unfortunately your list of adjectives "crap, rubbish and pathetic" does not explain to me what you have a problem with. It just demonstrates you do not have the capacity to argue a point. Only the capacity to be rude and offensive. This is trait many of us note in those who seek to support Kate and Gerry McCann and reflects very badly on them.

If you would care to try and properly set out any points you may have then I would of course be happy to answer you. However if you simply post more of the same I will simply delete it - given it adds nothing to the debate.

As the DE would say "personal abuse will not be tolerated".

Viv