Duarte Levy..

Freelance journalist

Russell James O’Brien – Record Of Tape Recorded Interview II

1578    “Okay.  The time is eleven thirty-two am and that is on Thursday the tenth of April two thousand and eight.  We are in an interview room at Leicestershire Police Force Headquarters.  I am DC, one, five, seven, eight, Andrew GIERC from the Leicestershire Major Crime Unit.  Could you give me your full name and date of birth please?”
Reply    “Yeah, Russell James O’BRIEN, twenty-six, eleven, nineteen seventy”.
1578    “Thanks Russell.  As I have explained to you before you are here voluntarily as a significant witness to assist in the investigation by the Portuguese Authorities”.
Reply    “Yes”.
1578    “In the disappearance of Madeleine McCANN on the third of May two thousand and seven.  This is the second interview of today and we shall continue, if we may, with a draft statement for you to read through in respect of interviews conducted on the eighth of April this year in this block”.

Reply    “Uh hu.  (O’BRIEN read through the statement).  Okay.  Finish the rest of that page, erm”.
1578    “So we can go from?”
Reply    “’When Kate raised the alarm she’”.
1578    “’When Kate raised the alarm’?”
Reply    “Erm, she didn’t get to the table, I think, ‘It was all enclosed’, I don’t know what that means, it could be just deleted really”.
1578    “So ‘It was all enclosed’ to be deleted?”
Reply    “Yeah, and it just says ‘She was at the start of the path when she shouted across to us’, which is fine.  Erm, it’s fine then down to ‘and possibly Gerry’.  I think maybe just to clarify what ‘the cul-de-sac area’ means, that’s actually the passageway and gardens in front of the apartment blocks”.
1578    “’We searched the cul-de-sac area’?”
Reply    “Erm, which is actually the passageway, I think, erm, when I said ‘cul-de-sac’, erm, I was referring to the fact that, although we’d never been along it in that direction, you can’t get out at the other side of the complex from the passageway that separates the pool from patio sides of the apartments.  But we searched down there and we done the adjacent gardens”.
1578    “So we need to describe ‘the cul-de-sac area’ as?”
Reply    “As the ‘passage’, well there, there was, erm, ‘the passageway’.  Erm, and then the last bit says ‘Shopping Centre and tennis courts’ there, that was actually on the, the sort of second wave of searching that I did.  Erm, so after we searched immediately around the, the complex, erm, and we hadn’t found her, I then went, I think around the back, or the front really, where the car park and the apartments are, to the main road, dropping down into the, into the town centre, erm, I forget the name of it, and went down round the back of the tennis courts, looking in there, round the back of the Baptista Supermarket where there’s a car park area and a bit of derelict ground, erm, and then into the Shopping Centre, which is the bottom two or three floors of a of a relatively large building just down the hill.  Erm, so that is a separate, erm, sort of search, after coming back to the foot of the apartment and clarifying that, that Madeleine hadn’t been found in the immediate vicinity”.
1578    “So after coming back to the foot of the apartment?”
Reply    “Yeah, we then went on separate searches further from the apartment and mine involved the front, and by that, I mean the car park side of the apartment and then down the hill towards the town centre, erm, and along there looking through fences, into the complex and the tennis courts, the back of the Supermarket and the derelict ground adjacent to that and the shopping, the lower echelons of this building which is a small, a small precinct”.
1578    “Sorry, back of the tennis courts?”
Reply    “Uh hu”.
1578    “Back of?”
Reply    “The back of the Supermarket and then into the, the small, slightly old, erm, Shopping Centre, which goes over one or two floors”.
1578    “Yeah”.
Reply    “Erm, it’s actually the day I met, ‘On the way back from the Shopping Centre’, in the next paragraph, I met Dave and he was running down the hill with a, with, you know, sort of panic in his eyes, saying ‘This is really bad, this is bad, they haven’t found her’.  There was obviously, a number of minutes had passed by this point, while we were looking individually”.
1578    “So ‘I met Dave on the return’?”
Reply    “On the return”.
1578    “’On my return’?”
Reply    “Heading back towards the, the, erm, the Super, well near the Baptista Supermarket, just down from there, erm, met Dave and it was him that said to me ‘This is bad.  This is really bad.  They haven’t found her.  She’s missing’”.
1578    “And he said?”
Reply    “Yeah, ‘This is really’, you know, He said ‘This is really bad, they haven’t found her’’”.
1578    “’This is bad, this is really bad, they’ve not found her’?”
Reply    “Yeah, or, you know, sort of words very similar to that.  The, erm, the next bit is, erm, sort of correct but relatively brief compared to what we discussed yesterday.  Erm, it said, erm, there was then Dave, Matt and myself shortly after this point swept down the hill towards the beach”.
1578    “So ‘we’ needs to be changed with ‘Dave, Matt and?”
Reply    “’Dave, Matt and myself’, yeah”.
1578    “’Searched down towards the beach area towards the Ocean Club’?”
Reply    “Erm, well it’s, yeah, I mean, that’s, that’s sort of later, no, it’s a bit misleading really.  Erm, we actually dropped down, almost directly, as the roads would take you to the beach”.
1578    “So ‘We searched down towards the beach area’?”
Reply    “Yeah, you can remove ‘towards the Ocean Club’”.
1578    “And we can remove ‘towards the Ocean Club’?”
Reply    “And the addition there was what we described, that Matt searched the, the beach immediately in front of where we came down at, which would be the sort of west, yeah, the western end of the beach, as far as, erm, Matt and Dave came into, erm, the area in between, and I went over towards the eastern part of the beach, erm, predominantly walking down the, the beachfront away from”.
1578    “Sorry, just repeat that again for me please.  Matt searched?”
Reply    “Matt searched, yeah, well, what would be the sort of west, he, where, where we came out we were sort of the west end of the, the beach anyway and he stayed and searched the rocks and the, the surrounding immediately there”.
1578    “’Matt searched west end of beach’?”
Reply    “Yeah, Dave took a sort of central portion of it and I went right over towards the sort of the, the main sandy area of the beach, erm”.
1578    “’And I went over to’?”
Reply    “Sort of on the west, well the eastern part of the beach”.
1578    “’Main sandy part of beach’?”
Reply    “Yeah, and dropped down to the waterline because it was quite easy to see back towards the town, because it was, there was street lighting, erm, but you couldn’t, certainly from further in, you couldn’t see if, you couldn’t see the beachfront terribly well.  And there was quite a lot of beach in that direction, so I went a certain amount, I didn’t, I didn’t go all the way over to, erm, I think it’s called Black Rock, but I got to a certain point and thought, you know, it’s actually, you know, well away from the beach (inaudible), turned back and, erm, on the return journey, this was when I bumped into, erm, somebody who, who, who was already aware that someone was missing.  I think, I don’t, I don’t remember her necessarily being, erm, definitely somebody I recognised form MARK WARNER, but she was an English woman in her, in her early or mid-twenties, fair or blonde’ish sort of hair, erm, I’d asked her if she’d seen, erm, you know, a little girl wandering around and, you know, I can’t remember what she said, but she was already aware that somebody was missing, so clearly she’d either bumped into Dave or somebody else searching around higher up in the town.  Erm, and then, before we kind of rejoin here, I sort, I sort of zigzagged back up through some of the roads, such that you, I would have covered a sort of triangle, from the apartment down to the beach, along the beach a little bit, and then, and then sort of heading back up to the starting point, over, over a number of minutes, I mean, it was certainly not every road or every garden, but, you know, just, as I headed back I tried to take in a number of, a number of roads and entrances just to see if there was anything there.  And during the course of this I’d spoken to a few people, there weren’t, there weren’t masses of people around actually and, erm, you know, a couple of holidaymakers and I can, I can remember speaking to some relatively elderly, erm, Portuguese people who were just walking along near the front at one point, but, erm, and the only other person I spoke to was, I presume, a Bar owner in that, in the Shopping Centre, and there was just one other, erm, elderly Portuguese man in there having a drink, erm, and they just sort of shrugged and, so.  Those are the kind of people that we discussed the other day who I met during that search.  Erm, and then, then it picks up back here really, where it says ‘We went back to five ‘A’, it was clear that panic was setting in on Gerry’ and certainly, certainly this was my first, erm, experience of, of, erm, of the anguish that Gerry was in, you know”.
1578    “Yes”.
Reply    “So, I don’t know whether this, at this point here was where Gerry was on the phone, I, I had spoken to him at some point about what he was like on, on the patio, and he feels that this may have been a little bit later on, but, you know, it was around, it was around, erm, it was around here, erm, we certainly went back, erm, and whether this was immediately after I returned or perhaps a little bit later on, I’m not sure.  But the rest of this is, is absolutely correct, ‘He was speaking to somebody, a member of his family’.  And, you know, Gerry is, you know, a very determined, a very, a very strong guy, he doesn’t get flustered easily, he doesn’t, erm, he shrugs off the minor nuisances of life with consummate ease and he was just, as described here, erm, you know, just ‘like a’, ‘like a’, ‘like a sobbing child, absolutely hysterical’ and I just, erm, you know, stood, stood there pretty useless really, erm, you know, none of us knew, none of us knew what to say, so that is correct.  Erm, I think around this, huh, I think as I said yesterday, in terms of the recollection, and certainly at this point I had gone back to, to my flat or to the doors of five ‘D’.  I think I may well have actually gone back, erm, to speak to Jane briefly in between, erm, the, the searches as well, so I’m not, as you can imagine, it’s a little bit of a blur in what order some of this happened”.
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “But the detail here about when I went back to Jane is certainly true in terms of content, whether it occurred at the point we’re writing here or whether it occurred in between one of the other searches, I’m not sure, but”.
1578    “Right”.
Reply    “Erm, and some of it’s obviously a bit of a rant as well rather than the detail, but, erm, ‘Went round to Jane’.  Certainly she has been made, over the months, by what’s written in the papers, to, you know, to be extremely hurt and frustrated.  She’s been, you know, she’s been called, at best, my wording here was that ‘She’s been described’, ‘She’d been described, at best, a sympathetic witness and, at worst, a fantasist and a liar’, erm, and she, she certainly feels that the PJ”.
1578    “So do you want something introducing there?”
Reply    “Well I think Jane’s been made to feel, I mean, this is obviously content rather than, rather than chron, erm, rather than chronology.  But ‘She’s been made to feel very’, ‘She has felt very frustrated and has been described, at best, a sympathetic witness’”.
1578    “So ‘Jane has’?”
Reply    “’Has been frustrated’, ‘Has been very frustrated’”.
1578    “’Has been frustrated’?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “’Made to feel’ needs to come out doesn’t it?”
Reply    “Yeah, take that out, yeah, ‘Has been very frustrated and has been described’”.
1578    “’Jane has been very frustrated’”.
Reply    “’Has been described in’, ‘in the Press’, at least, ‘as, at best, a sympathetic witness and, at worst, a fantasist and a liar’, I think was the quote.  Erm, and this has been repeated over and over again, including yesterday for the last nine months”.
1578    “Sorry, ‘At best as’?”
Reply    “’At best, as a sympathetic witness’.  I mean, I, I’d never heard this term, but the implication being that she had come up with an adequate explanation for the situation, you know, in, in some misguided way of, of, erm, of, erm, of, of getting Kate and Gerry some answer.  ‘And, at worst’”.
1578    “’At best, a sympathetic witness and, at worst’?”
Reply    “’A fantasist or a liar’.  Erm, and, yeah, ‘Jane, she was with Rachael’, erm, ‘and possibly Fiona’, I don’t remember that too well, but she was standing in the doorway of five ‘D’.  Erm, and she said, I just, I hadn’t heard this up to this point and she was saying ‘Oh if I knew there was something’ or ‘I knew it was strange’ and, you know, then she just said I think ‘I saw someone carrying a child’, that’s fine, I think they’re the kind of words that she used.  But I think  the next bit is a bit ambiguous, what I actually said the other day was, erm, I think, huh, in her mind there was no doubt that, that, that, you know, when she heard the news that, erm, that Madeleine was missing, that what she saw, you know, forty minutes earlier or so, was absolutely, erm, that the two were, were definitely related, you know, it was a, this was an instantaneous reaction.  Erm, by what you’ve got here ‘She played it down’, I think, well, what, I think she was, she almost didn’t want to believe herself over the, over the next couple of hours and she’s been concerned that on the night, the PJ who arrived later on in the night, that she, that she kind of sort of tried to, you know, almost, almost say the opposite, she’s not clear, you know, she’s, I mean, she will have said this in her statement anyway, but she didn’t play it down to me, erm, you know, I think, erm”.
1578    “So ‘She played it down’ needs to come out?”
Reply    “Yeah, it needs to come out or, or, or, in the sense that, she was worried, but at a much later stage she’s, she’s kind of thought, you know, ‘Did they not take me seriously on the night and did I play it down’, she is concerned that she may have played it down, but it doesn’t stand there.  And where it says ‘She was very calm, composed and adamant’, I think this is a sort of fusion of me saying that Jane is naturally a very calm and pragmatic person, you know, she doesn’t, erm, she’s not distractible and doesn’t fall prey to hysterical outbursts, erm, you know, if there’s a problem she just shrugs her shoulders and gets on with it, erm, you know, no noise, no fuss, and that’s her character.  So her character is like that, so I think ‘Jane was calm and composed’ needs to be replaced with ‘Jane’s character is’, ‘is’, ‘is not’, ‘is not one of a hysterical nature’, erm”.
1578    “Okay.  ‘Jane’s character’?”
Reply    “’And despite being upset she was adamant that what she had saw was important’”.
1578    “Right.  So just run that by me again please, so ‘Jane’s character’”.
Reply    “So, you know, ‘She played it down’ can just go, that’s not really relevant”.
1578    “Yes”.
Reply    “’Jane’s character is’, ‘is’, ‘is calm and collected and she is not prone to hysteria’.  And I think then ‘Despite being upset, she was adamant that she had seen this man’ or ‘this person and felt that the two were related, that Madeleine’s disappearance and her mild’, kind of, ‘unease at seeing this person were related’”.
1578    “Okay.  ‘She was adamant that she had seen this man’?”
Reply    “And that it was, and that ‘There was a good chance that she may have witnessed Madeleine’s abduction’.  So, I mean, it’s, it’s sort of there, but I think I was talking about Jane’s character when I was talking about ‘calm and composed’ and she certainly wasn’t entirely calm and composed when I saw her.  Erm, okay, I know that ‘Kate and Gerry were not involved at all’.  ‘I saw Jane, she was shaking’, erm, I think it’s a bit rambling.  Erm, I mean, it wasn’t so much then, I mean, Jane had already had this realisation, erm, that, you know, so it may be better just to say that ‘She had had a terrible realisation that she may have seen Madeleine being taken away’, so rather than, it wasn’t then, and by the time I saw her she’d already, she’d already, you know, this was instantaneous”.
1578    “So the words ‘It was then’ need to be removed?”
Reply    “Yeah, yeah, ‘It was then we’, it was really ‘She had had’”.
1578    “And the word ‘we’ needs to be replaced by?”
Reply    “Removed.  ‘She had’, I think.  So ‘It was then we’ is replaced by ‘She had had a terrible realisation that she may have seen Madeleine being taken away’”.
1578    “Yeah”.
Reply    “Obviously the next couple of lines are just me waffling on, but, huh, but the content’s fine.  I’d certainly never seen Jane like, like it before, you know, she was, erm, completely, completely, erm, I mean, she was absolutely certain.  Erm, and I suppose, just ‘Nothing to gain by giving false evidence or creating false leads’ rather than just ‘false evidence’, ‘false leads’, ‘false evidence or and creating’”.
1578    “’We as a group have nothing to gain’?”
Reply    “’By giving false evidence or creating false leads’”.
1578    “So ‘or creating’ needs to go in there”.
Reply    “Erm, the next page, I’ll just read a section of it”.
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “Yeah, okay, the next page.  Erm, it starts off, I presume these are the individual questions from the, from the, erm, the PJ and we’ve covered some and, I suppose, if we’ve got to go through these again, I can just, erm, whiz through.  ‘Asked who I spoke to’, erm, ‘It was people in the Bar in the Shopping Centre’”.
1578    “’People in the Bar’?”
Reply    “But that was, erm, if I sort of clarify, that was presumably the owner and a man, an old man in the Bar in the Shopping Centre.  Erm, you know, I’d say ‘Some older Portuguese people near the front’.  And it says ‘a female member of staff from MARK WARNER’, I didn’t recognise, I didn’t know her at the time, she may well have been a MARK WARNER staff”.
1578    “Okay.  ‘Older groups of people near the front’?”
Reply    “’Near the front’.  As I say, there weren’t many, there was surprisingly few people around.  ‘A female member of staff possibly from MARK WARNER’ might be better, because I have to say, I didn’t recognise, I didn’t know, I don’t think I recognised her before that point”.
1578    “’And a female member of staff possibly from MARK WARNER’?”
Reply    “Yeah, she was certainly, yeah, she was, she was English, you know, clearly not a, not a local.  Erm, next it says ‘We tried to find a picture of Madeleine’, I mean, it wasn’t so much struggling to get the picture, it was struggling to find the means of printing it.  We had the cam, we had Kate’s camera, erm, the, what we were trying to do is find a picture that actually gave a good likeness, rather than just being any old shot it actually had, you know, a close-up of her, of her face.  There were a lot of pictures on the camera but they were, you know, just at home and on, you know, in profile and things like that”.
1578    “Yes”.
Reply    “So we had, we”.
1578    “So to the words ‘we were struggling’, ‘but we were struggling’ need to be removed?”
Reply    “Erm, yeah, ‘we tried to find’, I think, it’s fairly irrelevant, I think, you know”.
1578    “So?”
Reply    “’We were trying to find a picture but we’, you know, delete ‘but we were struggling’.  ‘Kate checked the camera’.  Erm, I don’t actually remember saying that Jane had taken the picture of Madeleine at the tennis lesson, in any case, it wasn’t that day it was the day before that Madeleine and Ella were in the group, erm, on a different day doing the tennis.  I think, you know, it’s fairly, I think it’s fairly irrelevant anyway, I don’t think Jane did have a picture from the tennis lesson.  So I think that that could all go, I think that ‘Jane had taken a picture of Madeleine at the tennis lesson that day’ could all go and then put, the main thing here was, erm, ‘We were searching for a printer and Kat, one of the Nannies, said she had a printer’.  I’m pretty sure it was Kat.  So this paragraph’s quite”.
1578    “So we keep in ‘We couldn’t print it off’?”
Reply    “’We needed to print it off’ that, that was the sticking issue, we had pictures but we needed to get in somewhere to print them and I think people had asked at, at, at the reception down at Ocean Club”.
1578    “So the pictures of Madeleine?”
Reply    “On a digital camera”.
1578    “That were printed off?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “Came from Kate’s camera”.
Reply    “From Kate’s camera as far as I can remember, yeah.  And the main issue was trying to find somewhere to print it”.
1578    “What about if we say ‘Kate checked her camera and found some pictures’?”
Reply    “Yeah, yeah, or ‘Kate’s camera was checked’, I don’t think Kate was in no, in no state whatsoever to check her camera”.
1578    “Okay.  So ‘We tried to find a picture of Madeleine’?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “’Kate’s camera was checked’?”
Reply    “Umm, ‘And Kat or one of the other Nannies went to their flat to retrieve a printer or something that would connect to a printer and then the pictures were printed in the office off the small reception portal’, there’s a little office in there”.
1578    “Okay.  But ‘Kate or one of the Nannies’?”
Reply    “Yeah, ‘Kat or one of the Nannies’, I mean, Kat was there and Leanne was there, but whether it was actually their printer or lead, I’m not sure.  The rest of that paragraph, erm, is fine.  Erm, I think Gerry, it was actually Rachael, where it says ‘I’m not sure who informed the Authorities or media about Madeleine’s disappearance’, it says ‘It may have been Gerry’, erm, oh I beg your pardon, it’s the Authorities there, it says ‘Authorities or media’.  I think, erm, Gerry and Matt, erm, were the people who, who actually tried to get the Ocean Club to phone the Police but it wasn’t the media, so maybe delete, if you delete ‘or media’, because the person on the media, I think that was, I think that was Rachael”.
1578    “So we need to delete ‘or media’?”
Reply    “Yeah, I think it was Gerry or Matt, one or both, who, who raise, who actually raised the alarm with the Police, I think”.
1578    “’It may have been Gerry or Matt’?”
Reply    “Yeah, I can just, you know.  Erm, the rest of that sentence is fine.  I think it’s ‘I loathe the media’ comma, just to make it, just to read.  Erm, ‘A very low opinion of them’, full-stop.  ‘David also’, ‘David was also keen to make use of the media and I think he may have conducted’, conducted, ‘may have sent an email but I’m not sure’, I think he was looking to do it but I don’t think, erm, I don’t think that actually happened”.
1578    “Would you say ‘I’m not sure whether that was actually sent’?”
Reply    “Yeah, yeah, that’s fine.  Searches well we’ve got more details where we’ve said it again (inaudible), I think that’s fine.  ‘Leaving doors and windows open’, ‘We didn’t leave doors and windows open.  We did sit outside Saturday on the patio, we wouldn’t have left it open once inside’, I don’t know what that means, I think we were saying that occasionally we would sit outside but we didn’t go away from the flat with the patio open.  I’m not quite, I don’t recall the”.
1578    “I think the question was something like ‘Had you left doors and windows open during the holiday’?”
Reply    “Yeah, and, and”.
1578    “And the reply is ‘We didn’t leave doors/windows open’”.
Reply    “’And occasionally’, say, ‘we would sit outside on the patio’, but I don’t know about Saturday.  I think it’s actually ‘We would sit outside on the patio’ so you can cross Saturday off ‘but we wouldn’t have left it open once away from the apartment’”.
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “So maybe ‘inside’ is just ‘once away’”.
1578    “I’m sorry, ‘inside’?”
Reply    “It says ‘We did sit outside Saturday’, cross it off because obviously it wasn’t just Saturday we sat outside, ‘but we wouldn’t have left it open once away’”.
1578    “So ‘Saturday’ is deleted?”
Reply    “And ‘away’ replaces ‘inside’”.
1578    “’And we wouldn’t have left it open once away’?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “So we delete ‘inside’?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “And we add ‘away’?”
Reply    “Umm, and then, erm, ‘Checks on children and how often’, I think that’s, that’s clear enough.  Erm, ‘Mobile phone number’, erm, I think that’s, erm, ‘Zero, six, seven, eight, eight, four, two, eight, zero, one’, that’s all fine.  ‘Landline number’, erm, yeah, I don’t know whether I made the call or they rang me again, but, yes, it was just an update on what was going on.  Erm, ‘(inaudible) Anthony NICHOLLS’, erm, I wonder whether you brought that one up, because he was in France at the time, I don’t know whether it’s worth saying he was there, he was away, perhaps a short one, but that’s fine.  Erm, it says ‘Only met them after they flew in following Madeleine’s disappearance’, erm, ‘had not previously met’, I had, I had met them at Madeleine’s birthday, but they hadn’t, I hadn’t been in contact with them prior to their arrival, so I didn’t speak to them on the phone, erm, either between Madeleine’s birthday the year before and them arriving, so I had no contact with them in that time”.
1578    “’I wish to clarify that he had not previously met’”.
Reply    “Well I had, I had previously met them, as I said, but”.
1578    “So we could delete the word ‘not’ couldn’t we?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “’I wish to clarify that’”.
Reply    “’Had previously met Sue and Brian HEALY at Madeleine’s birthday but only met them after they flew in’, erm, ‘only met them again after they flew in following Madeleine’s disappearance’.  I hadn’t seen them for, you know, erm, the best part of a year and I think that was the only occasion that we’d, we’d met.  I’m not quite sure what the last paragraph, it says, erm, ‘Route back from table, shutters, didn’t look at them’, it doesn’t really make a great deal of sense, this is just our description of how I walked back, erm, you asked me if I noticed anything suspicious or untoward and I said no to that, erm, I’m not quite sure, ‘I felt that it was a loaded question’, I don’t recall because I don’t remember what we were discussing there.  But, no, it doesn’t really read very well but there’s nothing, I don’t know if ‘felt that it was a loaded question’ was something I said or whether it’s something that’s just got jotted down.  It doesn’t seem to be relevant but I don’t know if it’s just worth just deleting ‘I felt that it was a loaded question’”.
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “And the rest of it’s, you know, in shorthand but accurate.  Yeah, I’ll go just down to there because it changes there.  Erm, just to clarify that you made the timeline, I’ve written it, it’s fine, all of that, I think that’s fine, the times are quite vague and I’m not sure really but they’ll do. I don’t know why it says ‘Control Risk’ in?”
1578    “That’s the company”.
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “I think that submitted, is this the company investigating on behalf of Gerry and Kate?”
Reply    “Yeah, yeah, but the time, the timeline was done by us and us alone, the one that you got out yesterday”.
1578    “Okay.  So ‘Control Risk’ needs to come out?”
Reply    “Yeah, so I don’t know whether we gave, we probably gave them a copy as well, although I don’t remember specifically, but, you know, Gerry, Gerry had a copy of the file just as, as we did, but Control Risk, I don’t think were even, were even there at that point”.
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “Erm, and so that was a timeline that was made purely by the nine of us, erm, and, yeah, so Control Risk, certainly Control Risk had no part of it.  Erm, it says it ‘Was written the first weekend after Madeleine’s disappearance’, ‘After the first weekend’, so I don’t think we did it on the Saturday or the Sunday, I think it was probably”.
1578    “So ‘Was written’?”
Reply    “’After the first weekend after Madeleine’s disappearance’, so I’m not entirely sure of, of which day we started, which day we completed on, but it certainly, well I don’t think it was as early as the Saturday or the Sunday, I think I said on, the other day that it was probably the sort of Monday or Tuesday of the next week, but I’m not entirely sure, but as I say, it wasn’t the Saturday or the Sunday, it wasn’t that quick.  Erm, and then up until ‘comments’, everything else I think is, erm, is fine.  Erm, it’s rather brief in terms of what I’ve written about, erm, Robert MURAT and then there’s a whole, my whole third statement is, is solely about our meetings, erm, so there, there is a vast amount of information that, that isn’t there, but obviously in my third statement is, is a sort of testimony for that.  I think what I’ve written here really is that, erm, we gave that statement, erm, within a few days of him being made aguido, certainly before, erm, any details of, of his movements, according to his statement, had been, had been leaked or had come out into the open.  Erm, we certainly, the three, you know, the three of us, all immediately thought, when we saw him on the television, that we recognised him and that he was there on the night and the statements that were given were given relatively soon after the event and at the time I had absolutely no doubt that that was, that those were accurate.  The reason I brought this back up here is because I cannot see what he stood to gain by not, by not being, well by saying he wasn’t there on the night when there was the potential for so many people to have seen him.  Erm, and it’s been a bit difficult, kind of, erm, you know, he was trying to knock a square peg into a round hole here, because I certainly had a great deal of faith in what I said at the time, you know, there was no, I didn’t have any doubts, was it the evening, sorry, was it the night, was it the next morning, but with him denying it, with no further evidence coming out, with no questions in here whatsoever that kind of led, that would, that sort of said, you know, ‘What about Robert MURAT’, I can only speculate that there’s, that there is no further evidence, erm, that kind will push, will push the case further on him.  Erm, and then I also got the information from the likes of Charlotte PENNINGTON and, and, erm, at least earlier on, Sylvia, erm, well sort of the Housekeeper, and Press reports saying that other people also placed him there on the night, that kind of made me think, well this is, that I, you know, that I am correct”.
1578    “So is there anything that you would like to add to that paragraph?”
Reply    “Well only that it’s, it’s out, out of the context of what I’ve just been saying again there”.
1578    “Is there anything you would like to add to improve?”
Reply    “I think at the end ‘that he would have an alibi’, erm, ‘Although’, ‘Although convinced of the accuracy of our statements at the time of’, erm, ‘of giving’”.
1578    “Okay.  ‘Although convinced’?”
Reply    “’Convinced of the accuracy of our statements at the time of giving’”.
1578    “Yeah?”
Reply    “’And further backed up by the testimony of Fiona, Rachael’ and potentially a number of other people if you believe the Press”.
1578    “’And further backed up’?”
Reply    “’By the testimony of Rachael, Fiona and other people’.  It not going to make sense this, after this, is it, it’s one of these long O’BRIEN sentences that don’t really end, erm”.
1578    “’Backed up by the testimony of Rachael, Fiona and others’ did you say?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “Yeah?”
Reply    “’I cannot understand why Robert MURAT would deny being there and I do not wish to change my statement but have’”.
1578    “Which statement?”
Reply    “Well ‘I do not wish to change’, you know, the”.
1578    “’My original statement’?”
Reply    “’The original kind of statement’”.
1578    “Yes?”
Reply    “’But have’, you know, ‘the niggle that unintentionally we have’, ‘that we have got a time wrong and that it was in the morning’”.
1578    “’A niggle that unintentionally’?”
Reply    “You know, ‘I may’, ‘I may have the time wrong’.  Erm, let you write that”.
1578    “Yes?”
Reply    “Erm, can I just see how that.  Erm, ‘However Rachael and Fiona report they only saw him once and it was on the night’”.
1578    “Sorry, ‘However’?”
Reply    “’However Rachael and Fiona said they’, you know, ‘they firmly place him there on the night’”.
4064    “(DC HOLLIDAY enters the interview room).  Can I borrow you a minute?”
1578    “Yes”.
DC GIERC leaves the interview room.
DC GIERC re-enters the interview room.
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “Should have just started from the start of the morning, ha ha”.
1578    “I have just had some clarification that in respect of Robert MURAT”.
Reply    “Uh hu”.
1578    “You will be given the opportunity in a short time to expand on”.
Reply    “To go over on film like we did the other day?”
1578    “Yes”.
Reply    “Okay”.
1578    “The idea of clarification of this statement, the content of this statement are the notes made by monitoring Officers”.
Reply    “Uh hu”.
1578    “And really”.
Reply    “So we just want to get through this?”
1578    “Yes”.
Reply    “Alright, fair enough.  Erm, all what I’ve added there was, was fine.  And I think I was just carrying on.  ‘Our statements were previously given in good faith and positive our statement was right at the time’, erm, I think just delete ‘at at the time’ because it implies that it’s not right now”.
1578    “I’m sorry?”
Reply    “It just says here ‘What I said in my statement was right at the time’, I think those statements were correct, it’s just with the passage of time and all the other news has made me doubt, has made me doubt whether I’ve got what I saw on the morning and the evening mixed, but I’ll come back to, I can come back to that”
1578    “Okay”.
Reply    “Erm, I don’t know if, erm, if that, I mean, you could probably just remove that, I mean, I’ve not, you know, proof of that at all, I think it’s just that, you know, the sort of watched, I mean, certainly reported on and, you know, that’s all true, but I haven’t had, I suppose, that’s”.
1578    “So take the word”.
Reply    “Well that’s by, by journalists anyway, but I think I’d rather that was removed”.
1578    “So you wish that to say ‘There were various websites set up’?”
Reply    “Yeah, ‘and reported our lives are no longer our own’”.
1578    “Okay.  So we will take out ‘we are watched’?”
Reply    “Umm.  Erm, that’s, that’s over doing it, Jane has not, ‘Jane is unwilling to go back’, she hasn’t got problems with her, that’s just, that’s overdoing it, she hasn’t got problems with her nerves, you know, she, I think she thinks that going back would certainly, erm, be, you know, be absolutely awful, erm, for the reasons in that paragraph, but”.
1578    “’Jane is unwilling to go back’?”
Reply    “Yeah, ‘Jane is (inaudible) to go back’ as well.  Erm, but”.
1578    “Yeah?”
Reply    “And I think ‘she’, I think ‘she’ would probably be better just put as ‘we’ because I think it applies equally to both of us”.
1578    “Did you mention this bit here ‘She has problems with her nerves’?”
Reply    “Yeah, that can just go out, that’s just, I mean, she’s, that implies that, erm, you know, it’s been, you know, clearly we’ve had a very, very, very unpleasant year, erm, I could never have imagined it, but it’s not that, you know, that makes it sound that she is under a, well I think”.
1578    “’And I don’t think she’d be able to cope with it’?”
Reply    “Well you can put ‘we’ really, I think we think it would be absolutely dreadful being out there”.
1578    “’And we’?”
Reply    “Yeah”.
1578    “’Don’t think’?”
Reply    “Well ‘We want to cope with it’, maybe just ‘want’, ‘we want to cope with it’”.  No, leave it, leave it, that’s fine.  Erm, yeah, that’s fine, the rest of it’s okay”.
1578    “Very good”.
Reply    “Okay.  We should have started from the top shouldn’t we, ha ha”.
1578    “Right.  Okay.  Are you okay for a comfort break?”
Reply    “I’ll break whenever you want to break, you know, if you want to have a conflab just about the best way of, of doing it”.
1578    “I’m ready to proceed but I just need to, erm, to go and take a quick comfort break myself”.
Reply    “Right, then I’ll have a comfort break, ha ha”.
1578    “After you”.
O’BRIEN left the interview room.
O’BRIEN re-entered the interview room.
1578    “Excuse me”.
Reply    “Okay”.
DC GIERC left the interview room.
DC GIERC re-entered the interview room.
1578    “Okay Russell, moving on”.
Reply    “Uh hu”.
1578    “I would like for you now, if you would please, to recall, to the best of your ability, again take yourself back if it helps, and recall everything that happened, that you witnessed, from the beach on the Thursday afternoon”.
Reply    “Okay”.
1578    “Let’s start with going to the beach and it was late afternoon I understand?”
Reply    “Well we, me and Matt had gone down to the beach to go on, as I say, Matt’s a good, quite a good sailor and we took one of the, the, erm, the catamarans out.  So we’d gone down, erm, just after lunch, probably after the kids had gone back to the Kids Club, so two, two o’clock, two or three o’clock, and had quite a long sail, erm, we were out for a long time, Matt sailed for a bit and then I sailed for a bit and he kind of gave me a bit of a lesson really.  Erm, as I said, he, he got bounced overboard and the kind of wire snapped and I had to learn quite quickly how to turn a catamaran round and not run someone over in the water with it.  So we pick, you know, we picked him back up, erm, a boat came back out and repaired, you know, kind of repaired the, the bit that had snapped, erm, it was the harness.  And then we came back to the shore and by the time we got back to the shore, and I think we’d noticed for some time before that the, a lot of the others had congregated down on the beach and were down by the, by the waterfront, pretty much at the end of the, the boardwalk from the Paradiso Restaurant.  So me and Matt got, dropped the boat off, came over, erm, lots of general laughter about Matt’s near death experience and, erm, I trying to, you know, play up the glory as much as possible of course.  Erm, the kids were playing there, erm, this was, I would imagine would be, you know, quarter past four, half four time, erm, when we probably finished sailing.  Erm, went for a swim.  The first real, you know, thing, from the point of the investigation, is that we saw Kate do her run, her run past at some stage and it was, the people who was there, it was all, you know, it was Dave and Fi, erm, Matt and Rachael, erm, myself and Jane and all, and all of our children.  I can’t off-hand remember whether Dianne was there or not, as I said before, I think she probably was.  Erm, and, you know, around the five or five fifteen, five twenty mark or somewhere round there, erm, Kate McCANN came running down, she didn’t, I don’t think she stopped to speak to us, as far as I recall, erm, and she carried on up on the hard sand, quite near to the water, away towards, towards I think what’s called Black Rock, it’s a big kind of cliff, just erm, just east of the beach, erm, gave a bit of a wave of acknowledgement, erm, and as we were discussing earlier, I think she had a fairly sort of standard running kit on her, a pair of, of, erm, of shorts that, erm, and a, and a, and a, either a very sort of light tee-shirt or maybe a kind of running vest, I don’t remember which way round, but I saw, I seem to remember one being grey and one being a kind of navy blue, but which way round that is, I’m not sure.  Anyway so she ran off and, erm, I don’t, I don’t remember her coming back, but as time went on, I think the kids were getting a little bit hungry, so we drifted back up the beach to the, the Paradiso Restaurant, I think it’s called, erm, and got some chairs there, ordered some, some food for the children, because they’d missed, they’d missed high tea.  I have missed something out, something out here, of course, is that, erm, around the five o’clock mark, erm, I had to pelt up to Ocean Club to get Ella out before the Nannies would have taken them up to high tea back at the Tapas.  So I went up there, collected Ella and brought her back to the beach.  You’ve already asked me whether I saw Madeleine there, I have to say, hand on heart, you know, a year later, I don’t remember whether Madeleine was there or not, but the routine would have been that none of us would have needed to pick, to pick them up, so I, I presume she was, but can no longer absolutely place her there when I picked Ella up.  So we came back to the beach and, you know, as it was getting, you know, we headed off with Ella, after a short play, up to the Paradiso Restaurant, they played on the frames in front of there while the food was being ordered and had food, all fairly uneventful.  Erm, around, around the six o’clock mark we were, we were having such a good time down there we were, we were half tempted to, for the men not to go back to what was planned up at the Tapas, erm, namely a sort of men’s social tennis round, you know, which I think was due to start at six.  And I think as it got around six we thought it’s not really fair, you know, three of us not going there, there might not be enough players, you know, there wasn’t a full resort, so me, Matt and Dave, erm, left everybody else down at the beach and headed back up to the, to the, erm, the apartments, well to the Tapas anyway.  And I think, from the best of my recollection, I think me and Matt went straight to the, the courts, Dave went off to his apartment and I believe, erm, to Gerry and Kate’s apartment as well.  Erm, we then went down to the tennis, erm, it had already started because we were a little late, erm, and, erm, there was Gerry, Dan and a number of other male guests, maybe just sort of another three, two or three people, whose name I may have known at the time but no longer do, I certainly didn’t know them terribly well.  And we started off playing doubles on both, both of the two courts, erm, sometimes changing, changing players”.
1578    “So there is Gerry, Dan, yourself and Matt?”
Reply    “And Dave and a couple of other guests”.
1578    “You said Dave went to the apartment?”
Reply    “Well he did, but only briefly and then, well he went, he went back there and then, and then joined us, so fairly rapidly there was the full kind of compliment of, erm, of, the male adults within the group were playing tennis.  And, erm, we played for, you know, a fair amount of time, I mean, in total, we were out there probably an hour and a half nearly, erm, you know, something between an hour and an hour and a half.  Erm, and at some point during that period, erm, all the, the people came back up from the beach, so the kids were up at the, I can remember them being up at the, erm, the netting looking down at the sunken courts.  Erm, I say, they may have come down onto the court briefly and, erm, well it’s the point we weren’t playing anything like competitive tennis anyway.  Erm, and at some stage Jane, I think, well the kids had had a fairly long day, it had been quite hot, erm, and all that week they were usually absolutely exhausted at the end of the day and ready for bed, erm, and Jane took our children back.  I think Matt took, erm, Grace took, sorry, Rachael took Grace.  And I think Gerry actually left the court because he had been playing for longer than us, I think he went back a little earlier than me, Matt and Dave.  Erm, and Dan, the tennis coach, had also left before we did, I think he’d been playing all day and it was quite a hot day so he’d had enough.  Erm, and the reason I mention that is that normally if you went, if they were still there when you finished, you could put all the balls and the rackets away in the pavilion, erm, within the grounds, erm, but we had to take all of the rackets and balls back with us, so, you know, it was relatively late.  And I’m not entirely sure what time I got back to, to the room, but, you know, well eventually, me, Matt and Dave all came back.  And it was probably the latest that we’d got back and Jane and the kids had been in there for some time.  Erm, I’d say it was probably coming up to, you know, not, not far shy of eight o’clock itself.  Erm, and I would have probably had a quick shower, helped with the, erm, you know, with the stories and getting ready for bedtime.  I know, I know our kids were pretty tired that, that evening, they’d been playing on the beach and had a really, a really busy.  But we were running a bit close to our half eight, erm, booking, so the kids were in bed, but they hadn’t been in for long.  So I think shortly after half eight, erm, maybe sort of twenty-five to or twenty to, Jane went down and I certainly can recall saying ‘Well you know what I like’, you know, we’d ordered, it was a very limited menu, we’d discussed what we liked each night, and I said, you know, ‘Just order the me the’, ‘Order the X, Y and Z and I’ll be down when I’m happy that the kids are definitely asleep’.  And I didn’t stay much longer, to be honest, they were, they were all fast asleep and there wasn’t a noise out of them at all.  So I headed down, you know, about quarter to or so, erm, to the Tapas, exiting through the main door on the car park, erm, and double locking it there, the patio was shut and everything down and didn’t see anything particularly remote on the way down, erm, and just arrived as normal.  The mood entirely normal at the table and I, on my arrival, the only people who weren’t there, erm, as we discussed, would have been the adults in five ‘H’, so Dave, Fi and Dianne, who were pretty routinely the last ones there, as, erm, you know, all week.  Erm, we kind of sat and, and, and talked, waiting for them.  And I can distinctly remember, from the position I was sitting, I was looking towards the apartment block and, erm, you, you could see the lights on in their, in their rooms, inside, and occasionally see people walking about.  So there were lots of jokes about the fact that they were still, still not there and probably if we didn’t get a move on they weren’t going to serve us.  So Matt, erm, around nine o’clock, give or take a few minutes, but around that sort of time, he got up and said ‘I’ll go and drag them out’ and I believe also had a listen outside of all of the rooms as well.  In any case, as he was walking back, he actually met them on the way down.  And so by the time they had sat down and Matt had come back from a brief listen at the windows of the bedrooms, we were all there.  Erm, I don’t know whether we’d ordered individually, I doubt we did, I think we probably put the order in altogether.  Erm, so we’d have ordered.  Erm, obviously we create, we sat down and created a timeline so I’m aware that the next person who got up was, was Gerry, not from a really clear recollection of him getting up necessarily, but, nonetheless, Gerry was away from the table for, erm, for five or ten minutes.  And during the time that he was away, erm, you know, we decided, me and Jane, that we’d do, we’d do a check on our room.  So Jane actually got up, erm, and went over and did a check, erm, and then came back.  And I don’t remember her saying anything about Gerry talking or, or, or, or any problems in the room or having seen anyone, I think she just, she just did the check and returned.  Erm, and, erm, I presume at some point, although I can’t picture it, you know, Gerry himself coming back.  We had, we had the starters.  And I think the next clear thing in my mind is actually that, erm, by the time the starters arrived, we’d eaten them and everything else, I thought it was probably about, you know, it was time we did a check and I also needed the toilet so rather than just go to the toilet, which was almost up to the portal, I got up and Matt, erm, said ‘Oh I’ll come and do a check as well’.  So me and Matt walked back to the, to the, erm, to the flats, erm, this would have been about, about kind of twenty-five past nine, I suppose.  Erm, and as we, you know, it will probably come back to, but as you asked me the other day, I didn’t certainly notice anything particularly strange or different, I didn’t see any cars parked or anyone standing around or loitering.  I don’t think we, we walked around the side of the building and I don’t recall making any particular look at the front of the building to notice any changes in the, in the shutters.  But we probably wouldn’t have bothered, you know, ‘a’ low suspicion anyway and ‘b’ we were going to go to each of the flats and just have a listen, so I don’t think we made any visual check of it first.  Got to my flat five ‘D’, erm, and as we, you know, got sort of quite close I could hear Evie murmuring, so she was, she was obviously awake.  So I went into five ‘D’, erm, I actually went to the toilet first.  Erm, and then Matt broke off at this point and he went over to his flat five ‘B’.  And I was just, just in the process really, after having a wee, of checking, erm, of checking Evie and had, you know, had established that she’d, erm, that she’d been, that she’d actually been sick in the cot.  Erm, I, you know, Matt returned, so this was only really a matter of a couple of minutes or so later, and, you know, he asked if everything was alright and I said, you know, ‘Well Evie’s obviously awake and I think she’s been sick’.  So he offered to help and stay if I needed it and I said ‘No, you go back, just let Jane know that Evie’s awake and she’s been sick and’, you know, ‘and whether she’d come back after she’s finished her dinner’.  Erm, so Matt then went away and, to the best of my knowledge, he then went round the back of the building and did a check of Kate and Gerry’s room via the patio door, before returning to the table.  Erm, within the flat, erm, you know, I got Evie out and she had some sick on her, on her, on her clothes and on her face, so I actually turned on the sort of shower taps and I got her out of her, erm, out of her kind of nightie that she was in, gave her a quick wash, erm, and then, at some stage, either then or later on, I also stripped the, stripped the cot, I think I must have done it at the time because I think that actually had more sick on it than anything and I just rinsed that off in the bath.  And then they went into the, erm, fully functioning, easily to operate by men, washing machine, that, erm, that MARK WARNER had, had, erm, provided, that was in the flat anyway.  Erm, and then I just sat really with Evie down near the patio door, erm, she was, you know, she was awake but otherwise, otherwise fairly happy, and just read a book, read a book to her I think.  Erm, and then Jane, you know, a number of minutes later, I mean, I would have thought his was probably around, round about the sort of twenty to mark, sort of ten minutes later from when I arrived, had come back having sort of eaten her main course.  We were in the flat together for a little while and I would imagine at this point probably put the washing on and, erm, you know, and then Jane, Jane said, you know, ‘They’ve made your main course, why don’t you go back down and get it’.  I’m not entirely sure which way out I went, I mean, ordinarily we would have always have gone out through the front door and deadlocked it.  Erm, I mean, you asked the other day whether I did go that way, I have to say there’s, there was nothing stopping me nipping out the quicker patio way and Jane was shutting the door, but I don’t recall which way I went back, but I certainly didn’t see anything untoward on the way back either, although, by this point, obviously, it was pretty, it was, it was dark.  Erm, I arrived back at the table, erm, everyone, there was, there was some hilarity in the fact that Jane had been dispatched, erm, to relieve me in the apartment, erm, and I kind of, erm, quickly picked up that that was what the, what the, the joke had been.  There was, there was some dialogue with the waiters, erm, of a humorous nature as well.  And I think my food was actually still there at the minute, but as I was starting to eat that, I mean, one came over and said ‘Oh no, don’t’, you know, ‘it’ll have gone a bit cold’, you know, ‘we’ll do you a fresh one’.  So I then waited for a period of time, you know, sort of five or ten minutes while they quickly, you know, it was sort of thin steak so I’d imagine quickly grilled or fried, erm, fried up a meal of that.  Erm, mood, identical, you know, a very good humoured night, I think it was probably the, out of all the days of the week it was the one where, I think, where everyone was really, you know, really had had a, you know, enjoyed the day, the weather had been great.  Erm, you asked the other day whether I specifically recall Kate getting up to leave, erm, I can’t picture her, her going, but obviously at some point she, she was the, the only person I think to, to go back to the room sort of after my return to the, the table, I think.  Erm, the, and the only real point of reference that we can, that I can remember now is that, is that somebody did ask what time it was at some point, probably while Kate was away, and Rachael, erm, sort of said that it was around the ten o’clock mark, so I think, you know, although we have to be a little bit, you know, there’s a bit of, erm, a bit of a guesstimate going on, on sort of the other times, there as certainly a time check that was announced, you know, around the ten o’clock mark.  Erm, my food had arrived, well my food had arrived I think by this point.  And, and then Kate, erm, erm, returned, erm, obviously Jane wasn’t there but the rest of us were still there, and she came through and, you know, into the portal, I didn’t see her arrive, but the first thing really we recall then is, erm, is, is Kate shouting across from the, from the reception area and perhaps she didn’t come particularly close, I don’t recall.  Erm, and as we discussed the, on the initial recording, erm, if I’m honest, I don’t recall her absolute words, only really the meaning that, erm, you know, that, that Madeleine, that Madeleine had gone.  Erm, and so, you know, at this point, you know, she, we all just got up and, erm, erm, and, and left with the exception of Dianne who, who I think stayed, who stayed at the chair.  We then got up to the foot of the, of the apartment and, erm, you know, clearly, you know, a state of, you know, growing, growing panic.  Erm, some people went directly into the flat initially, erm, included, including Gerry and, and Kate, others just stayed at the, at the, at the gate, erm, on the road leading down beside the apartment.  Erm, and you know it was, it was absolute, you know, bedlam, there was panic and, you know, I’m not, the, the order of how things were decided and what, and what we did is, is just a complete blur at this point, but, you know, nonetheless, I think people came back out and then, you know, she’s, she’s certainly not there.  And I recall, certainly me, erm, erm, Dave, Matt and I think initially at least Gerry, just said ‘Look, let’s just’, erm, ‘let’s just split up and find’, erm, you know, ‘see if we can find her, see if she’s just wandered out’.  So everyone did a little bit of a search just in the, in the immediate area and I went along the passageway which was in front of the patio, the patio entrances of, of the apartments, erm, round, all the way along that initially, I think, and unbeknown to me at this point, because we hadn’t really used this entrance a great deal, certainly not walked to the other end of it, it was actually a dead-end, so I then had a look in the, in the front gardens of, of the apartments on the ground floor that you could see, searched a little bit just in between the two apartments and obviously this was a fairly brief search and rapidly doubled back and, erm, you know, the, other people had just came back from the immediate vicinity as well and it was established obviously that no-one had, had found her.  I’m not entirely sure whether I went round to quickly see Jane at this point or whether it was after my next, erm, my next search, but while I’m talking about the searches I’ll just say that.  I think then we decided that we just needed to look a little bit further afield, erm, and I went round the, the front of the apartments, the high side of the apartments, had a look along there, erm, got to the, what I’m calling the main road that drops in from, erm, from the, from the motor, from the dual carriageway outside of town, and then looked, you know, down, you know, looked down the hill there, erm, towards the, the, erm, the western side of the tennis courts, erm, really looking, you know, either side of the road just to see if she was sort of wandering there, erm, and you could hear kind of ‘Madeleine’ being shouted pretty much everywhere around at this point.  Erm, that, the next, after I kind of moved down a bit to the left, there was the Supermarket quite some distance away, but there’s a, there’s a, there’s a road and I think it had a car park or a, well certainly a car park but there was an area of sort of rough that you could probably, you know, it’s not tarmaced or anything, had a look around there, couldn’t see her.  And then there’s, erm, there was an entrance into, erm, the building kind of opposite this, which is, is, which is like a Shopping Centre, erm, or at least the lower floors seemed to have a kind of a set of like a Curry House and a Bar and a few things and a swimming pool as well, and, huh, I can’t remember the layout in there very much, but I remember it being kind of split on, on at least sort of two levels, lots of little recesses around kind of, I think kind of shop windows and stuff.  So I didn’t really know where I was going, I’d never been in it before, but, nonetheless, sort of wandered around the lower floor and didn’t find anything.  I went up on, on, I think on the next floor up, as I came off the stairs and came round there was a, a small Coffee Bar or a Bar on the left and looked in there and asked, there was a, there was a, a man and a, erm, erm, presumably a barman in there, just, there was only a couple of people, and said, you know, ‘Have you seen a little girl’ and, I mean, I don’t know how much English they spoke, but they seemed to, they just sort of shrugged and said no.  So then just around that area.  And then, and then found my way out of the, the Shopping Centre and actually came out at the other end from where, well a different entrance, I didn’t come out the same way I don’t think, erm, and, erm, it was actually on the road that comes down in front of the Baptista Supermarket.  I don’t know whether I searched a little bit more around there, but not long thereafter I met Dave coming down the road in front of the Supermarket, erm, just looking terrible, just pale, erm, you know, sort of, you know, sort of fear in his eyes, saying, you know, ‘This is’, erm, ‘This is really bad.  This is bad’, you know, ‘No-one’s found her.  No-one’s found her’.  Erm, and I don’t know what happened at this point particularly, erm, whether we went around there, but at some point or other me, Matt and Dave found ourselves either back at the flat or, or, or, together somewhere nearby and decided that we would, erm, head down to the beach, I think that was just ‘a’, you know, you think ‘Oh there’s water down there it’s dangerous if she’s got that far’ and ‘b’  just, it was, it was desperation and gravity takes, you know, would take you that way.  So the three of us swept down through a number of roads, erm, and then came out down at the, you know, down on the beachfront and I think by this point we thought it, you know, it was fairly futile searching as a three so we split up and took sections of the beach and, as I’ve described before, I think Matt looked immediately around where we had come out on the beach, me and Dave kind of headed along towards where the majority of the beach was in the other direction and Dave started searching on that part of the beach and I got myself almost over to where this Café Paradiso or Restaurant Paradiso is, along the boardwalks and out to the, to the water edge, erm, and I found there that you could, if looking back, you, it wasn’t perfect, but you could see a fair amount of the beach and as well, and also be able to look at the waterline as well.  Erm, went along there for a bit towards Black Rock, erm, and then, and then at some point decided to turn, to turn back, I mean, I thought, I think it felt rather unlikely that, that Madeleine was going to have walked the distance that I was starting to go, I think, you know, there’s no, there’s no reason why she would have necessarily left the kind of the beach area and gone down there.  So I didn’t go all the way, turned back, as I came back, erm, you now, I bumped into the, the woman I described before, early twenties, fair hair, given the light, English, possibly a MARK WARNER employee, although I don’t, I don’t remember, I don’t know whether I’d seen her before, erm, or since, but she was certainly, you know, either, erm, tut, someone who worked out there because she wasn’t Portuguese, she seemed to be already aware that, that somebody was missing, either through bumping into Dave or, you know, having been higher up in the town recently.  Erm, and then did a, a, a comb through various streets, erm, not with any great, erm, plan but just to try and cover some area on the way back up to the, the apartments.  And then obviously got back up to the apartments and it was clear that, you know, the, erm, you know, that things were still, you know, very, very dire and no-one had found her.  I mean, right up until this point I, I thought some, you know, I did honestly think that this was just, that the patio was open and she, you know, and she had gone for, gone for a wander.  Erm, by the time we got back from this I think, you know, there was, there were other people were certainly starting to congregate and, in fact, I think some people were starting to search, mainly staff from MARK WARNER, who I think had been alerted fairly quickly.  Erm, and it’s a, and it’s a bit of a, it’s a bit of a blur as to, you know, what, what happened at this point.  As I said before, I think I probably went round to Jane before I’d done this, this sort of leg to the beach and back, but it may have been, it may have been that I actually went round at this point.  And, erm, I went round to the, you know, went round to the room, erm, and, from recollection, Jane was stood in the doorway, I think almost certainly with Rachael, possibly with Fiona as well.  Erm, and, you know, I went up and she was, you know, clearly very, very distressed, erm, just, erm, you know, phew, you know, almost, almost sort of shaking, and I, you know, I just thought it was just part of the, you know, the shock that we were all kind of experiencing, and I gave her a quick hug and she said, you know, ‘I think I saw someone.  I think I saw someone taking Madeleine away’ and she sort of told me what, erm, what, you know, what she, what she had witnessed when she’d done her check, but, you know, hadn’t put too much weight on it because you know, until, until your suspicions are raised, you know, why would you, why would you.  Erm, and as we discussed before, you know, there is no doubt in my mind, I mean, I’ve known Jane for twelve years, that she is, erm, she is calm, she is collected, she doesn’t make a fuss, she doesn’t, erm, she doesn’t get flustered by things, you know, if there’s a problem then she just gets on with it, she’s not neurotic, she’s not hysterical and, you know, from her recollection at the time, this wasn’t, this wasn’t something that dawned on her hours later, this was an instant, erm, visceral feeling, you know, right inside, that, that these two things were absolutely related, you know, as soon as she knew that Madeleine was missing then, then, erm, it was, it was absolutely clear as anything to her, you know.  I’ve said, I’ve said the other day on the other film, you know, that she has been treated abominably by the Press, erm, fantasist, liar, you know, sympathetic witness ,whatever you like, it’s been repeated over and over again, it’s gone unchallenged, it’s gone undefended, it hasn’t been, hasn’t been put to bed by a statement from the Police and, you know, this, Jane would not make this up, there is no question in my mind that she would fabricate this, there’s no, as I’ve said before, there’s no, there is no benefit for finding Madeleine by creating some random false lead off into the dark, you know, in a certain direction.  Erm, and Jane hasn’t been, you know, has never been more sure f something in her life, I mean, she didn’t see enough of this person to know exactly what they looked like, she didn’t see the child to know that it was definitely Madeleine, but something triggered her suspicion at the time, but because, you know, as far as she was concerned, all was well in the flats, you know, she didn’t really kind of think much more of it, but then, as soon as she knew Madeleine was gone, there was something odd about this chap, it wasn’t right, it wasn’t right the way, the speed, you know, and all the things that she’s, you know, undoubtedly described.  But, but she has been treated like shit for nine months in the Press, I mean, it’s been disgusting, it’s been absolutely appalling, you know, and I think, huh, I mean, none of, you know, you know, I’ve said earlier, I mean, I cannot abide the media and I think they’re, I think they’re an absolute disgrace at the best of times and had a fairly strong view of them beforehand and it’s only been made dramatically, dramatically worse by this, but, you know, they, they have poured scorn on what we consider and certainly Jane considers to be the fundamental sort of eye witness account of this and, you know, at every stage when she’s done her, you know, when the, the picture was commissioned, it’s been laughed at, scorned at, you know.  I don’t think there’s any doubt in Jane’s mind, erm, that this is, this is, this is what, this is the moment where Madeleine was being taken away and, you know, as a, as a statement, you know, a personal witness for her, she is not going to make this up and it’s not going to be, erm, huh, it’s not going to be some hysterical reaction to the circumstances, that is just not Jane’s personality and I think she’s demonstrated that during the year by, by, you know, when not reacting in a hysterical way to, you know, phew, national TV interviews and everything else.  So, anyway, I saw her at some point either after the initial searches or after this longer one.  Erm, then, erm, there’s a period of time where, where we didn’t search and, erm, we were trying to do things, you know, nearby, erm, one of the, one of the things we tried to do after the Police, the local GNR Police had arrived, was we tried to get, we tried to get the photograph, erm, Kate certainly had some on her camera, they were looking for one, you know, face on that was big enough rather than a, you know, a profile or something, so that took a little while, we then didn’t have any means of printing it and a lot of the MARK WARNER staff were around including John the Manager, I think it was Kat the Nanny, erm, but certainly one of the Nannies made, you know, certainly had found, found either a, well either a printer themselves that would print only from cameras or at least, erm, a connection to the printer that we could use for the card, I can’t remember what the equipment was in the end, but all of this took quite a, quite a while to get hold of.  Erm, you know, there was sort of pandemonium outside really, erm, attempts were made to, to get in touch with the Consulate, erm, and, erm, you know, there, and a lot of conversations between us together and also members of the, erm, members of the MARK WARNER staff and bystanders as well about what had happened and there was, there was quite a lot of people helping out in, in the sort of local searches as well around the adjacent blocks.  At some point in amongst this but before, probably before I, erm, you know, tried to get hold of the pictures, I actually ventured towards, in towards five, erm, five ‘A’ and, as I said the other day, I really did feel at a little bit of a loss and quite pathetic in terms of, you know, knowing what to, you know, how to support Kate and Gerry and I’ve always felt a little, I mean, we’ve all felt a little ashamed that, you know, were a bit powerless to, to, to really kind of, to help them and to support them, but, you know, my recollection of Gerry at some stage around this time was I came up the steps, I could certainly hear him, I mean, even earlier than this, you could hear wails of despair, erm, you know, almost sort of inhuman wails of despair from Kate inside the flat on, erm, erm, on a number, a number of occasions when we went back and, erm, but this was the first time I’d actually really seen or heard Gerry, he was on the phone to, erm, a member of his family, erm, curled up really on the floor just outside the sliding patio door just sobbing uncontrollably and in between sobs just saying ‘They’ve’, you know, ‘Someone’s taken her’ or ‘Somebody’s bloody got her’, you know, ‘She’s gone’ and absolutely erm, you know, you know, for such a strong man to see him on the floor broken he was, he was incapable of even standing up, he was just lying on the floor and just repeating himself, there was so little he could, you know, there was just nothing else in there.  Erm, and, erm, at this point, you know, there was, erm, you know, other conversations, you know, this is where I believe I had my first meeting and conversations with, with, with Robert MURAT, he’d helped break up a little bit of a, of a fracas between a couple of guests and the, and the Police, the couple of Police who were, who were there and were standing outside the apartment or just a little bit up from it, erm, and, erm, they weren’t, they weren’t visibly doing very much and I think a couple of the, either British ex-pats who live there or tourists, one of whom, they were both in kind of their fifties, if I remember rightly, they were getting quite, quite mouthy, they were quite, they had a very clear idea of what they thought that should be done and, erm, at one point they were, they were saying this quite loudly to, to, you know, a couple of members of the GNR whose English obviously wasn’t good enough to hear a, a shouted colloquial rant in English at them, erm, and I’ve a recollection of, of, of MURAT sort of saying, you know, ‘Hang on guys they can’t understand you’, you know, being actually very helpful and that is my recollection of him on the night, that he came across as concerned, like a lot of people, you know, said ‘I’ve got a daughter the same sort of age, this is terrible, this is terrible’, helping defuse the situation with, with the, erm, with the, erm, with a couple of members of the GNR.  I had another conversation, I mean, over, I’m not entirely sure what sort of timescale this is, I think my original statements said this was all around one am, but it’s all a little bit of a blur, erm, I had a few other conversations with him, erm, either round the back of the apartments, erm, I mean, he was saying that, you know, again, sort of console here, very consolatory kind of comments which were, which a lot of people were saying to anyone who they knew was part of the group, erm, and one thing he did make a mention of was, you know, it was something about Norfolk, which I believe is where he his, his, his wife and kid live and he said there was, you know, there was a case a few, a few years back, erm, of someone went missing and then they turned up, they may have turned up hundreds of miles away, but, you know, they were unharmed, they were safe.  Again, you know, the kind of thing that most people were quite happy to, happy to hear and, you know, I didn’t have any, any great sort of suspicion about him on the night, in fact, he didn’t feature in any of our statements on the first or the second attempt, erm, I know Fiona and Rachael have much more vehement views on what he was like, they found him a little, you know, different, but, from my point of view, he was, he was just helping like a number of other individuals and, erm, and being fluent in Portuguese was, was obviously a big help on such a night.  Erm, he also sort of gave the impression that he might have done some Police work before and, to be fair, I probably didn’t know at the time but now I don’t know whether he was referring to translation work that he’d done with the Portuguese Police here or whether he’d been involved in translating for, for Police in Britain, you know, in the opposite direction, but I’ve got this vague, vague now recollection of some kind of conversation on that, on that, erm, on that level.  Erm, the next, so, you know, at some point I think I felt, I was starting to feel sort of useless again, just hanging around the apartment, you know, there were a lot of people, you know, going around at this point, so I opted, after the pictures and after a period of time back in the flat and conversations to go away again, erm, and this time I searched over and on towards the Millennium Restaurant, so in a, in a completely different direction to where I had been before.  As I said, I don’t think the, although people, there was some coordination within small groups of individuals, there wasn’t really a systematic route to anyone being searched, so I may have been covering ground that had been done before, but, nonetheless, I chose somewhere that I hadn’t been before, erm, searched along those roads, there’s a few alleys that kind of, well alleys the wrong word, erm, roads that I presume higher up just sort of go, you know, lead out of town, that run parallel to the road that goes up past Millennium, erm, I went round a few of, erm, a couple of these with increasing futility really, and I think despite there being a bit of moonlight, I couldn’t really see very much, erm, there were sort of dog barks and you kind of think, you know, ‘I’m just going to walk into some field of rabid dogs’, so in the end I kind of double back.  And I think almost as I’d, you know, given up on walking up these roads, I went down and, as I said on Tuesday, erm, a car came up one of these roads with what I think was Dan the tennis coach inside and another, at least, I think at least one more occupant, I can’t remember whether he was driving or whether he was in the, in the passenger seat, but he certainly recognised, recognised me in the headlights and being as tall as I am it’s usually  fairly easily spotted, erm, and he, and I kind of said ‘Look, I’ve been up there, I can’t really see very much’, he said ‘Don’t worry, we’re driving up these with the headlights, we’ll have a good look’.  So I came back to the, the main, the main road, erm, that was leading over to the Millennium and then for a fair amount of time went round all of the individual flats there and looked, the ground floor, you know, they’re all, they’re all identical with walls running like this and gates and you can open the gate and you can look in on the ground floor at all of the gardens and there were a number of other people kind of searching around doing the same sort of thing.  Erm, and then at some stage I headed back to the apartment, that was, that was my final search of the night.  The, the next real recollection, I mean, I don’t know how much time we spent in our own flats and talking outside, but the next recollection really is, erm, being in the, in the flat, this was sort the first time I remember being in the flat with, with, erm, with, with Gerry, you know, around this point there, there were a lot more, I think, I think the PJ had arrived and certainly there were actually other, other members of the GNR around as well because there was, you know, a fair number of people milling around in the, in the  passageway going in through the, the, erm, the locked door, not, so not on the patio side, but there were a lot of people including Police around, around the exit there near the shutters and stuff.  Erm, and at some stage sort of quietened off and the, the PJ sat down with, you know, came in and sat down with Gerry, the recollections of what happened there are relatively dim now, but the only ones I can really recall was, although it was prompted by what you showed me on Tuesday, was that we were writing on the back of a piece of card, I thought it was a cereal box but obviously it was a children’s book, a very kind of, very, very, draft idea of what happened in the hour and, erm, and what state the windows and the shutters had been in and I think I, that was, that was written with me sat at the table in Kate and Gerry’s room.  Gerry by this point had certainly calmed down but was, his head was just on the table, you know, like that, he was just staring at the, at the table, very, very quiet and very, very low.  Dave PAYNE was in there at least at one point early on.  And I think possibly Sylvia this Housekeeper, I think she came in, I think she was offering to translate at some point.  But anyway Dave PAYNE said to, erm, there were two members of the PJ had arrived, there was a guy I remember being almost shaved bald head, quite dark complexion, and a second one who we kind of nicknamed ‘baby face’ who did our fingerprinting about a week later, erm, and those two were there and Dave was, was saying, you know, ‘Shouldn’t we’, you know, ‘Why are we sitting here, shouldn’t you be on the radio, shouldn’t there be more people here, shouldn’t there be’, you know, ‘this should be on the radio, it should be on the television’ and, erm, I recall ‘baby face’ or his colleague saying ‘No media’, and, you know, and that was full-stop and then turning round to me writing the timeline and saying ‘That’s what we want’, fair enough.  Erm, huh, and that’s really it.  At some point Jane came in, I think because Jane was in with our kids at this point, I didn’t hang around too, you know, too long and I went out, but Jane came in I think to give a brief statement to the, the, the PJ on the night, erm, and this is where she’s concerned that, she didn’t really want to believe what she had seen and she was worried that she had played it down to those staff on the, on the night, such that, that she was never taken seriously again by the PJ, erm, but, erm, that was, that, I mean, that was, you know, her concern about how she, how she pitched it at the time, but she desperately didn’t want to believe that what she saw was, was true and be the last person, you now, in the group to sort of see Madeleine.  Erm, and then I have to say that the rest of the evening is, is a bit of a blur, the PJ were at the flat I think for probably about an hour, but I’m guessing there.  At some stage they permitted or told, erm, erm, somebody, Kate and Gerry, that the, that the, that the twins could be taken upstairs, because certainly one of the next things I can recall is quite late on in the evening being upstairs, erm, in five ‘H’, the twins were , I think they’d been taken up there, I think they were still, I think they were still asleep, although at one point they, they did, did wake up and I think Kate and Gerry later on were, were cuddling them.  Erm, and we were all just stood there almost in, in silence or at best whispers, you know, absolutely dumbstruck by, you know, the, the, the turn of events.  Erm, and, you know, Kate and Gerry were sort of sat on, they were sat on the sofas there or on the edge of the sofa, erm, absolutely broken, just, just, you know, hugging each other and or just sat there, erm, and we were there, you know, well I was up there for a while, I’ve no idea what time this was really, erm, it seemed, well it seemed like we’d been up all night already but it was still dark and I think we went, we decided that we, you know, we weren’t going to, we weren’t going to search anymore, most of the, most of, by this point, most of MARK WARNER I think had largely decided as well that there was no obvious sign of her in the immediate vicinity and the fact that, you know, there was no-one outside at one point and when I went to bed everyone had gone, erm, clearly, well at least most of the GNR, I don’t know if there was anyone still there at all.  Erm, and had a very brief, erm, period of lying next to Ella, I think I went in one room with Ella and I think Evie had already been moved into our room and Jane slept with her in there and just lay there for an hour or so, certainly didn’t get any sleep.  Erm, and then, you know, we, we got up, I think it was probably in the first twinkling of light, and I don’t really remember anything, there was certainly no breakfast eaten, I mean, there was nothing like that.  My next real recollection is going back up to, to five ‘H’, you know, it’d be light by this point so it must have been, you know, seven, you know, seven o’clock, seven thirty or something, I remember it was light.  And, erm, you know, the situation was pretty much as I’d left it before and, you know, Kate and Gerry were there and, you know, I think they, I remember them telling us that they, you know, they, I think in the end they’d gone out searching on their own, you know, they were just depressed because they said, you know, there was no-one else there, you know, they were the only ones out, you know.  So just, just almost a, a muted silence, but the twins were there, I think they were, they were awake.  Erm, I think at some point, as I say, the phone call, questions on there, around the eight o’clock mark, particularly because Rachael at some stage, I can remember her being sat in our apartment and Rachael was talking to a colleague or a friend who worked at the BBC News Desk, I think it was, she was certainly on the phone, you know, on the phone to a colleague who, who either directly or indirectly worked for the BBC or knew somebody who did and, erm, but that was, that was, I’d missed that out, that was certainly earlier on, probably before we’d gone to bed.  Erm, and at some point we put the SKY News on the, on the TV in their room and, you know, it was breaking news and I thought I’d better ring my mum because, I’m not quite sure how specific, I forget how specific it was, but I thought, you know, mum needs to know what’s happened and also if it’s ‘a child has gone missing in Portugal’, my mum would probably go ‘Crikey, I hope that’s not one of ours’, so I had a very tearful conversation with my mum explaining what had happened and, erm, you know, and, you know, sort of saying well, you know, ‘Ella and’, you know, ‘Ella and Evie are safe, but it is, it’s Madeleine’ and, erm, erm, you know, as I say, she was pretty upset and, erm,  well it was only a brief call and didn’t really have a lot to say and, erm, you know, when my dad came back, you know, my mum was in a terrible state and he thought one of us was dead.  Erm, but, erm, I’m not really quite sure how the morning, earlier part of the morning like clumped together, obviously at some point the Police came back, erm, probably not, you know, around, you know, they were there maybe when I was making this phone call again and at some stage there was, we must have been, you know, we’re going to take, you know, some of you to the Station this morning, some this afternoon and we split up into pairs so somebody could stay, MARK WARNER had said, you know, ‘We’ll open the crèche and all of the children can stay at the Tapas irrespective of age and there’s more staff on there so’, you know, ‘if you do need to go to’, you know, ‘the Police it’s covered throughout the day’, but, erm, I don’t quite know where that, that sort of fitted into things.  At some stage, erm, Kate had asked for, erm, to find a Priest, I think this was not going to be, this was probably a little bit later on, it was not going to be much longer than before they actually went away with the Police to Portimão.  Erm, you know, I certainly saw Robert MURAT again on the morning and that’s the occasion, erm, on which I took his, his mobile number, erm, and I thought, you know, certainly with some of the translational difficulties with, you know, with the staff, that he appeared to be a very, a very kind of useful person to sort of be able to contact should we need him, as I say, I remember taking his details just on the corner of the apartment, we were outside, not, not on the road outside five ‘A’ but just at the junction of the two roads, he was walking off and going around there and I remember kind of catching him and saying, you know, ‘What’s your name’ and just putting Robert and his number into the phone.  Erm, I think that was before I then got the number of the Anglican Priest, sorry the Anglican, erm, Father, because Kate’s Catholic, and I was also given some numbers, I don’t, I don’t remember who gave me these, and I rang a couple of them which didn’t go through, so I went down to, at some point during the early part of the morning, I think this was probably after Kate and Jane and Dave and Matt had all gone to the Station, erm, and rang these numbers, I thought maybe it was my mobile not putting me through, I got in touch with the Father from the, from the, erm, from the Catholic Church there, he was out, difficult English between the two of us, but he was out of town but offered to see Kate, you know, on his return, and then when I came back up they said ‘Were you after the Priest’ and I remember, I said yeah, and I remember being directed and sat over there, but actually this was the outgoing, it was his last day in Portimão, erm, his last day in Praia Da Luz, and I had a chat with him poolside, you know, in fact, probably in the chairs we were sat in the night before and then he went off.  The kids at some stage here got put into the crèche and for a fair amount of the morning was spent in there, you know, we, we certainly didn’t really feel like being away from them for too long”.
1578    “No”.
Reply    “Made the phone call to Anthony NICHOLLS, which is the one you asked, he was on holiday in France and actually riding a bike at the time so he was no use anyway because I’d forgotten he was on holiday and I actually wanted to speak to someone at work saying, you know, ‘pending a minor miracle we are not going to be back on Saturday for work on Monday’, so I rang Tom WHITEHEAD from the balcony of the crèche and, you know, had quite a long conversation with him explaining what had happened”.
1578    “Okay.  I think we will leave it there for a short while”.
Reply    “Okay”.
1578    “Have a break, a bite to eat”.
Reply    “Uh hu.  Alright, thanks”.
1578    “The time is one twenty-two pm and this interview is ceasing”.

Filed under: Documents, Madeleine McCann, , , , , , , , , , , ,


January 2009


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