The Archiving Summary - McCann/Mitchell Version
Oh really? The Standard Presents the Parents' View of the Summary
The City of London finished its work on behalf of the couple on July 21 2008, with the shelving of the Portuguese investigation and release of the parents from arguido status.
The true professionals had excelled themselves: the corporate lawyers had constructed the Madeleine Fund as an infinitely flexible funding tool, as requested; the accountants made sure the Fund structure was fine-tuned for optimum returns to the right people, as requested; criminal lawyers effortlessly dismembered the weak-to-non-existent case put forward by the Portuguese prosecutors; the libel lawyers put the media on notice of the defamation proceedings waiting for them. Finally, the less classy but still necessary PR and Reputation Management people, from Hanover Communications to the worm Mitchell, put these realities into a form suitable for the gullible public – lies.
For the City, a job well done; for Mitchell, a name well-made, even if it was at the expense of a child’s corpse. For the parents, a catastrophe – unless you believe that the McCanns are guilty of disposing of the child or her body. If you believe that, then fine, the donors’ money was well spent in keeping them out of prison for a while; if, on the other hand, you believe in the couple’s innocence, or the possibility of their innocence, then it is a horrible failure.
For what has it accomplished? Nothing. In the now well-known absence of evidence against the pair, a fifty quid an hour conveyancing solicitor from Halifax could have got them off in 2008, as long as they kept their traps shut. On the other hand, even if Goncalo Amaral’s claim had been proved and conviction in Portugal had followed, they would have been out of prison years ago. The public’s memory, especially when it comes to celebrities and their “mistakes”, is that of a gnat, their judgement of what redemption actually means, worthless.
Then, by the time their surviving children had come to awareness of their fate, after a few years, perhaps, of being looked after by relatives, they would have grown up, like so many, with a painful episode in the family past to overcome. Instead the twins and other relatives exist in a mercilessly transparent specimen-cage. After prison Emma Loach would no doubt have managed the occasional "soldiering on" piece on the pair in the Saturday Guardian. Instead they are a grotesque freak show, an occasional target of tabloid innuendo, put through the mincing machine of the internet world-wide twenty four hours a day. Few neutrals can bear to discuss them.
Now Why Would They Do That?
All the parents have ever done since 2007, for whatever reason, is buy time. The Archiving Summary put time near the centre of its conclusions, its “Reconstruction” section devoted purely to the unresolved (as yet) nature of the questions about the group. In 2013, despite all the efforts of the McCanns, the first answers to those questions began to emerge, with the invalidation of the Bundleman claim. Did the McCanns really think that those questions would just go away? They can never go away until they are answered. If they aren't answered in the couple's lifetimes as a result of police action then they will be fodder for a hundred books for a hundred years - already there is far more to chew on and speculate about than in the Jack the Ripper case. But Jack the Ripper has no known descendants or dependents.
Yet even after the shelving the McCanns, instead of settling for the relative freedom they’d been granted and walking away, tried to buy more time. They used their prior knowledge of the findings to misrepresent the entire Archiving Summary, in a manner so gross – and one that the Bureau alone has highlighted time and again over the years against not just McCann supporters, who don’t matter, but against Carter-Ruck's claims – that, finally, the assembled sages of the Portuguese Supreme Court told the world that what we'd maintained since 2010 was true and that, yet again, the McCanns (“Portuguese prosecutors mock their own police”) had lied through their teeth, this time about "exoneration".
The Ultimate Enemy
And so we come to Goncalo Amaral. Anyone who thinks that the six years expended on Grange is crazily long and must mask secret complications, should consider the fate of Amaral carefully. Despite his desperate need to free himself from their grasp, his unrivalled knowledge of the case and his continuing connections with the Portuguese police, it has taken him eight years to liberate himself from the clutches of the couple. At no time has he ever been able to produce, or call on, any judicially-acceptable evidence of the couple’s guilt that would have forced them to drop the case. That is how deep the evidential black hole surrounding the fact of her disappearance is.
Yet Amaral really is the couple's nemesis. Perhaps that is why Kate McCann, who said she'd had uneasy premonitions ahead of the Praia da Luz Trip - before denying the comment, as usual - also felt a sharp, mysterious and, as it turned out, totally justified, terror of the man's presence many years ago, enough to have made her clutch her hidden crucifix as he passed by. It's all there in coarse and debased soap-opera form in the McCann Affair, isn't it? Shakespeare, disaster foretold, magical amulets and Catholicism via Crossroads. Only death will part these three people.
It is no mere symbolic victory. More was revealed about the McCanns and the way they operate in the witness box than had ever come to light in the worthless staged interviews and puff-pieces of the MSM. Much of the money from a witless public that has sustained them is being taken away in costs, destroying the financial power of the couple to harm others, thank God. And unless other legal proceedings occur in the future – ah, who knows? – the Supreme Court libel case judgement is the final judicial word on the status of the McCanns: nobody has ever freed them from suspicion of involvement in the disappearance of the child, thus confirming the criminal case Archiving Summary’s original finding that “they lost the chance to demonstrate their innocence” when they failed to co-operate. Both complement the Leicester police case statement that “no evidence exists to demonstrate their non-involvement” in the disappearance of the child.
This unanimity from three separate corners of the law reflects the realities that the McCanns have fought for ten years to conceal or stifle and it does so in the clearest possible terms. The parents’ failure is a verdict on their own cunning but weird conception of life, one in which there is a blank where certain human feelings should be, as well as a judgement on the cynical opportunism of all those, like the worm Mitchell, who took their money in the equally naïve but fashionable belief that altering human perception, whether by lies or force, can alter reality itself.
Wrong. Reality itself is not malleable by anyone but waits silently for us all; the most you can do is delay the impact of reality for a time by deceiving others or, more commonly, yourself and that, as in this case, always makes things worse. All those worms that fed on the tiny coffin altered perceptions much less than the truth embodied in the passage of time itself. Look at them. "Bodies don't lie," as ex-lovers say ruefully, and nor does time or the burdensome truths it carries, as Shakespeare, again, knew. Quite suddenly the McCanns are an ageing and increasingly distant-looking couple, galaxies away from our own experiences, blurred photos from a soggy, ancient and, most of all, discarded, cinema poster.
If it weren't for the fate of Brenda Leyland, a genuine, recognizable human being, not an exhibition pair like these two, they'd be pitiable. As it is one just feels nothing at all, not even contempt.