British Media Headlines and quotations

McCann case dominates Portuguese press, United Kingdom
Sympathy and suspicion — the case so
Times Online, UK
UK press shocked as McCanns named suspects
Melbourne Herald Sun, Australia
Family rallies to support McCanns
The Herald, UK
Cops tie mom and dad to missing British girl's death
New York Daily News, NY
McCanns 'to remain in Portugal'
The Press Association
Madeleine parents 'will fight on'
BBC News, UK
Missing British girl's mother questioned again by Portugal police
Xinhua, China
Experts Stymied by Latest McCann Twist
The Associated Press
Could Kate McCann Be a Murderer?
Madeleine's mother 'named as suspect'
CNN International
Mother accused of killing Madeleine
The Press Association
Police identify new suspect in Madeleine case, France
Portuguese police name new suspect in Madeleine case
Police announce formal suspect in Maddie case
Portuguese police name Madeleine parents suspects
Kate's shocked family and friends: This is a set-up
Daily Mail
The three crucial hours before the alarm was raised that Madeleine was missing
Daily Mail
The 17 key questions detectives may have asked Madeleine's mother
Daily Mail
Kate McCann: The claims and case for defence
The Telegraph
How couple helped to build ‘brand McCann’ into global phenomenon
The Times


The Christian Post
By Eric Young Christian Post Reporter
Fri, Sep. 07 2007 05:45 PM ET

Madeleine’s aunt said police suggested the missing girl might have been killed accidentally rather than kidnapped, as has been believed since Madeleine disappeared from her family’s holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, a resort town in the southern Algarve region of Portugal, while her parents were dining at a nearby restaurant.

"They tried to get her to confess to having accidentally killed Madeleine by offering her a deal through her lawyer — 'If you say you killed Madeleine by accident and then hid her and disposed of the body, then we can guarantee you a two-year jail sentence or even less,'" Gerry McCann's sister, Philomena, told ITV news.


Daily Mail
A haunting question for all of Kate's supporters
Amanda Platell
00:42am 8th September 2007

As so often in this terrible case, it's the pictures that stick most keenly in the memory. Madeleine, bright-eyed and smiling, clutching two tennis balls to her chest in one of the last photos taken of her... Her parents, weighed-down by exhaustion and grief as they walked by the sea shore... Madeleine's pink "cuddle cat" held tight in her mother's hands as she attended mass each Sunday.

Now we have an even more haunting image: Kate McCann walking into the Portuguese police station for a second day of questioning, to be branded a formal suspect in her daughter's disappearance.

One can only speculate what mental torment she must be going through. But there are now surely two horrible possibilities. Kate could be being set up by a Portuguese police force, humiliated by its inability to find a single solid lead in Madeleine's disappearance. If that is indeed the case - as her friends fervently believe - or if she is simply the victim of yet more police incompetence, then it is surely appalling.

Despite their mishandling of the case so far, are the Portuguese police really so stupid and callous as to put Kate through this latest ordeal unless there remained questions only she could answer?

For Kate McCann's sake - and for those of us who have identified with her - we can only hope so.


The Telegraph
Kate McCann: The claims and case for defence
By Gordon Rayner, Chief Reporter
Last Updated: 10:51pm BST 07/09/2007

Salacious reports of blood spots, intercepted phone calls and child sedation so far have been dismissed as nothing more than libellous slurs by the McCann family.

Now there is the very real prospect that Kate McCann be charged and tried over Madeleine's disappearance.

races of dried blood, said to be Madeleine's, have allegedly been found in a car hired by the McCanns 25 days after Madeleine's disappearance.

The blood is said to have been found in the boot of the Renault Scenic hire car after sniffer dogs were brought in by British police as part of a review of the investigation.

Tests by the Forensic Science Service in Birmingham are thought to have indicated the blood may be Madeleine's.

Then last month there were speculative claims that the McCanns, both doctors, may have 'doped' Madeleine to get her off to sleep before they set off for dinner at a tapas bar near the apartment.

There were reports today that the police were questioning Mrs McCann about giving Madeleine a dose of a sedative.

Mrs McCann's lawyers will already have identified several huge holes in the theory that she could have killed Madeleine.

How, for example, could she have killed her daughter, removed her body from the apartment and hidden it while her friends sat just yards away in a tapas bar?

And how, four weeks later, was one of the most watched women in the world able to bundle a body into a hire car and dispose of it under the noses of her family, police liaison officers and the world's press?

The McCanns were among a party of nine people on the day Madeleine disappeared, in a resort full of tourists, and were never away from their friends for more than a few minutes at a time.

It would surely have been impossible for Mrs McCann to kill her daughter and hide the body in such a short space of time without being seen, not to mention returning to the restaurant as if nothing had happened.

The only other window of opportunity would have been in the two and half hours between the time when Madeleine was last seen alive and when the couple met their friends for dinner.

Most implausible of all, perhaps, is the suggestion that Mrs McCann returned to the place where she had hidden the body a month later, put it in the boot of her hire car and driven somewhere to dispose of the body.

Ever since Madeleine's disappearance the McCanns have been surrounded by friends and family, police officers and the media - are we to believe that she somehow gave them all the slip and buried her daughter or threw her out to sea?

Furthermore, could she really have gone through 127 days of constant interviews and media exposure without once showing any signs of guilt?

On a procedural level, a catalogue of blunders by the police, who failed to seal off the crime scene, would be likely to render any forensic evidence unreliable.


The Times
September 8, 2007
How couple helped to build ‘brand McCann’ into global phenomenon
Skilful media handlers recruited celebrities and world leaders to a campaign driven by parents’ acceptance of the press as partners
Dominic Kennedy and David Brown

If the Portuguese police were sluggish about starting to search for the missing girl, nobody could accuse British spin-doctors and reporters of being slow off the mark in their hunt for headlines.

The McCanns dominated the news quickly. As doctors and young parents living a quiet provincial life, they had no experience of dealing with the media.

Fortunately, the Mark Warner organisation that runs the holiday camp where Madeleine disappeared was represented by one of the best PRs in the business.

Alex Woolfall is crisis management head at Bell Pottinger, the public relations outfit headed by the original sultan of spin, Lord Bell. Mr Woolfall’s main clients have included that other global brand Coca-Cola.

For the first fortnight after Madeleine disappeared, he was on the spot in Praia da Luz, acting as gobetween for the family and the growing pack of journalists.

In an unprecedented move, the Government took over news-handling on behalf of the McCanns. Sheree Dodd, a former Daily Mirror journalist and long-serving senior spokeswoman for the Government, was dispatched to Portugal. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office announced that she was being deployed as “press officer responsible to act as media liaison officer for the McCann family”.

After a couple of weeks, she was replaced by an even more prominent political figure. Clarence Mitchell, a former BBC News presenter now working as a senior government spin-doctor, became the voice of the McCanns. He was described formally as providing “consular support in exceptional circumstances”. His costs came to just over £6,000, and Ms Dodd’s are likely to be similar.

Justine McGuinness, a public relations expert, has been recruited, with the help of a headhunter, to become the McCanns’ private spokeswoman in Praia da Luz.

It’s not surprising, then, that the Daily Express has put Madeleine’s picture on its front page almost every day. Its previous favourite cover girl was that other British blonde who came to grief mysteriously in foreign parts: Diana, Princess of Wales.

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