12 October 2007
The Sun
With Clodagh Hartley/Antonella Lazzeri in Rothley
Angry Gerry slams cop rumours

The parents of Maddie McCann reacted with fury yesterday after reports in Portugal claimed Gerry was not the tot's natural father. Police sources say IVF baby Maddie, four, has a different biological dad. They claim it means that if DNA evidence said to have been found in the couple's hire car is proved to be Maddie's, it cannot be explained away as being the twins'.

But a close family friend said the claim had left Kate and Gerry "horrified and distressed". The friend said: "Gerry IS the father. And he damn well knew, because of the IVF process, that he was 100 per cent the father."

Kate and Gerry - both GPs aged 39 - had IVF treatment for Maddie in Leicestershire. They had IVF for two-year-old twins Sean and Amelie in Amsterdam, Holland.

The outrageous new allegation came from police sources and were printed in the Portuguese daily 24 Horas. The paper even claims that enquiries at a sperm bank in England had identified the true biological father. It said UK officials visited the sperm bank to verify paternity. The article claimed: "The English found the biological father and concluded he had nothing to do with Maddie's disappearance."


The Portuguese police sources say Maddie's paternity is "very significant", adding: "It explains why Madeleine's DNA profile is so different from her twin siblings." The paper claimed this means samples of hair and bodily fluids taken from the McCann's hire car and their holiday apartment in Praia da Luz must be Maddie's. It went on: "There is absolutely no chance her paternal profile could be confused with her twin siblings." Kate and Gerry hired the car three weeks after Maddie vanished on May 3. The paper added: "For the police the key to knowing whether Maddie was transported already dead in the car is the little girl's hair."

Forensic scientists in Birmingham are still trying to determine if the hairs have come from a corpse. The results of the final tests are expected to be returned to Portugal on Monday.

Sources believe cops also want to find if sedatives can be detected in the hair. Leaks have this week made outrageous claims that the McCann children were drugged. This has been furiously denied.


On the latest allegation, McCanns' spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: "Due to further unwarranted, unsubstantiated and totally inaccurate speculation in the Portuguese press, Gerry and Kate have authorised me to make the following statement. "For the record Gerry McCann is the biological father of his daughter Madeleine. A report suggesting otherwise is nothing short of lies. It is indeed an absolutely untrue fabrication."

Mr Mitchell said the couple planned to sue the paper as soon as their official suspect status is lifted.

He said: "We have up to a year to sue and we will do." A close family friend said: "They are extremely upset by this. "They knew this rumour had been doing the rounds but to have it published is a terrible shock."

Gerry's mum Eileen McCann slammed the report as "utterly ridiculous". Eileen, 67, said: "These allegations are totally unfounded. They are pure speculation."

Police in Portugal have been working on the theory that Kate and Gerry were responsible for their daughter's death and hid her body. Yesterday, the co editor of 24 Horas stood by his story.

Luis Fontes claimed it was confirmed by Portuguese and British pathology sources as well as Leicestershire and Portuguese police. Mr Fontes said: "Our sources are rock solid. If they think they can sue us, bring it on."

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