Mad rant that got Maddie cop sacked

Mad rant that got Maddie cop sacked
3 October 2007
The Sun
Clodagh Hartley and Nick Parker in Portimao

Amaral claims Brit detectives duped by family

THE top cop removed from the Madeleine probe yesterday had accused British police of being duped by the McCanns.

Chief Inspector Goncalo Amaral -in charge of the day-to-day running of the case - made the astonishing claim in a Portuguese newspaper.

In a totally unprecedented attack, Amaral alleged Kate and Gerry were being allowed to call the shots -and said British detectives appeared to have forgotten they are official suspects.

Amaral went on to accuse police in Leicestershire, where the couple live, of only following up leads the McCanns gave them.


His shocking comments left Portugal's Justice Minister Alberto Costa in a rage.

He hit back: "We need to concentrate on the job and on the case...and not on the commentary."

Amaral's bosses then reacted too, demoting the Chief Inspector and removing him from the Departamento de Investigacao Criminal, Portugal's CID, in Portimao. He has led a team of 30 officers there since Maddie vanished on May 3, shortly before her fourth birthday.

He will now be based at an HQ in Faro.

A Policia Judiciaria spokesman said: "Goncalo Amaral has been removed from DIC and all the cases that it is dealing with." Clarence Mitchell, speaking for the McCanns, said: "I can confirm that Kate and Gerry are aware of this development but we cannot make any comment." But a lawyer working for the McCanns in Portugal said the comments were "in very poor taste" and "unhelpful".

And a family friend said: "Maybe the police can get back to what they are supposed to be doing -finding Maddie."

The attack by Amaral, 48, had specifically attacked a decision by British cops to investigate a lead sent by email to Prince Charles's website. It claimed Maddie was taken by a disgruntled former employee of the Ocean Club in Praia da Luz.

Amaral ranted: "This story about abduction for revenge is another lead being worked on for the McCanns. That situation has been completely put aside having no credibility whatsoever. The Ocean Club is in Praia da Luz, not London, which means everything said by employees, current or former, has already been investigated by the Policia Judiciaria.

"British police have only worked on what the McCann couple want them to work on.

"They have only investigated tips and information developed and worked on for the McCanns, forgetting that the couple are suspects in the death of their daughter Madeleine."

Another senior officer, Carlos Anjos, also waded into the row yesterday accusing Gerry and Kate, both 39-year-old doctors, of running a campaign to discredit Portuguese police.

Mr Anjos, president of Portugal's Police Federation, said the couple put out "daily announcements of a new fact in order to distract and hinder the investigation."

Amaral had already come under heavy criticism.

Some sources claimed he works 4 1/2-hour days, enjoys "boozy lunches" and has reportedly failed to investigate many tip-offs his officers receive.

Last month it also emerged that he is one of five men charged over an alleged attack on the mother of another missing girl.

Read all the daft Portuguese detective theories at

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