Today, I'm going to look at two passages from the book, both of which deal with the attempts of the McCanns to get their hands on information to which they are not entitled.
The first one details events shortly before the case was shelved and took place with the McCanns out of the country, on holiday in Canada
While we were away, there was a hearing in the High Court relating to an application we had made on Madeleine’s behalf for access to all the information held by Leicestershire police relating to her case.Okay - let's stop there for a moment.
So what we have here is the two prime suspects, still arguidos, who hotfooted it back to Blighty faster than you could say "extradition treaty", taking the police to court to try to obtain information given to the police. This is information which includes witness statements and possibly information about which they have been questioned - the existence of a witness who states they saw K&G carrying a bag, for example. Or possibly a witness who says they were considering palming Madeleine off on a relative.
So let's have a little think about that.
Imagine you witness a crime and give a statement to the police. Months later the person you identified goes to court to try to get their mitts on your statement. And your address. And your phone number. Do you think you might be a bit miffed? Like, shitting through the eye of a needle, miffed? I bloody would be!
And let's not forget, Gerry wasn't slow to come forward - he contacted Martin Grime's boss, an act which I regard as both a fucking nerve and extreme folly. Kate too was known to ring up witnesses, clutching a peeled onion in her bony claws, and begging them to do whatever she had her mind set on.
So, what did the police say? Let's find out....
As nobody else was now searching for her, we wanted our own investigators to have the chance to check this material for any relevant leads.I bet you did.
Naively, I’d thought a court order would be seen by the police, who were always telling us their hands were tied, as a way of helping us without upsetting their Portuguese counterparts.Bullshit. This court hearing did not materialise from thin air, they had attempted to use the orders granted under the Hague Convention for an entirely different purpose
If they were required by law to pass us this information, surely the PJ would need to accept that? I couldn’t have been more wrong.Or "I couldn't have been more pissed off"
The UK authorities fought our application tooth and nail.Good. Good for them. It would have represented a betrayal of several fundamental tenets of British justice, and I am very glad you were told to go piss up a rope.
I was shocked by the force of their opposition and the lengths to which they seemed prepared to go to deny us this access in these circumstances.In which circumstances? The circumstances where you were the prime suspects?
The British police had their reasons, of course, among them the investigative primacy they were obliged to concede to the Portuguese and the concern that being in possession of information otherwise known only to the police and the perpetrator might compromise Gerry and me, since at this point we were still arguidos.No Shit, Sherlock. It might also compromise the brake pipes of any witness you didn't like the sound of.
All of this the assistant chief constable for Leicestershire made clear in a statement written for the court. He had come out to Portugal shortly after Madeleine’s abduction and had seen us at our most grief-stricken, and yet he felt able to comment of Gerry and me in this statement: ‘While one or both of them may be innocent, there is no clear evidence that eliminates them from involvement in Madeleine’s disappearance.’This is utter sophistry. Kate McCann is intelligent enough to know that regardless of his personal opinions, not that we know what they were, but regardless, no police officer could ever agree to such a step. In fact, it would make no difference if they were provably innocent; that information should never be made freely available to the victims, suspects or any other bugger.
We were completely staggered. No evidence to eliminate us?That is a statement of fact. There still is no evidence to eliminate you
Whether or not it was his intention, that line stuck in our heads as ‘guilty until proven innocent’.No it didn't.
Given the extreme opposition we faced, we realized this was a battle we weren’t going to win.Your barrister told you you were utterly fucked, like a horse in the Hebrides.
Reluctantly, we made a tactical decision to accept a smaller amount of information.Tactical decision my rosy arse. You had no choice
Having to withdraw was quite galling, especially as the eighty-one items disclosed to us included trivial details that our family had passed on to the police in the first place.Tough titties
Can you believe this pair?
The thing is, even with the information, what did they think they would be able to do with it that half the plods in Europe couldn't?
I would be very, very wary of any attempts by them to obtain information about people who had given evidence against them. Witness tampering is still a crime
Moving on a bit, we come to this passage towards the end of the book. Operation Grange is yet to commence, and they are bleating about a review
In November 2010 we started a petition to lobby the two governments to conduct an independent review. We are at a loss to understand why such a commonly used procedure isn’t an obvious option and why our request for such a review has gone unanswered.Maybe because you asked so nicely? "Give us a review or we'll say shitty things about you in the paper every day" tends to put people's backs up.
While awaiting a response we will endeavour to do all we can to find Madeleine.Sweet fuck all, basically
Our own search, however, has significant limitations.One of them being the fact that it has been conducted by a series of fuckwits
Crucially, we do not have access to all of the information that has come in to the inquiry. The Portuguese authorities possess a great deal of material that was not included in the police file released into the public domain.Uh oh - here we go again....
The British police, too, hold information we do not have.And are not going to have.
The more data we can acquire, the more complete the picture will be and the stronger our chances of finding our daughter.Bullshit.
If a review is declined, or indeed if no decision is ever made, we will be left with no alternative but to seek disclosure of all information possessed by the authorities relating to Madeleine’s disappearance.Can you believe it?
They have been told already that they can't have it, but no, they'll have another go. Because obviously a bony ex-GP will make a much better job of it than 30+ qualified and experienced detectives
In the absence of any other active investigation, it must surely be in Madeleine’s best interests that we and our team are given access to records that will otherwise just sit there gathering dust.
Read my lips: No. Fuck off.