MERRY CHRISTMAS to all of our supporters.
Once again we have been amazed this year by the support we continue to have for our search for Madeleine - and opening the hundreds of Christmas cards has once again been a truly humbling experience. The warmth, kindness and commitment to never forget has precipitated more than a few happy tears! Thank you.
It's hard to ignore that 'here we are again' feeling at this time of year, still with no idea where our daughter is or of what's happened. What we can say is that our resolve to find out, as well as the hope which has always been present, has not lessened. In addition it's very apparent that the determination of the Metropolitan Police remains steadfast, in spite of the persistent challenges they face.
No matter where she is, Madeleine will, as always, be very much with us and our family this Christmas.
Thank you for holding her in your hearts too.
Kate and Gerry
11 June, 2014 - Statement from Gerry and Kate
We are very pleased that significant activity has taken place in Praia da Luz over the last 8 days with police officers and support teams from the UK working closely with the Policia Judicial and the Guarda Nacional Republicana. We are further encouraged that, despite the intensive searches, no trace of Madeleine has been found and this reinforces our belief that she could still be alive. As parents of a missing child, we have always wanted all reasonable lines of enquiry to be followed and it is gratifying to know that a substantial amount of work will take place over the coming months with close cooperation of the British and Portuguese authorities. We would like to thank all those involved for their efforts and the members of the public who have come forward with information.
Gerry and Kate
11 June, 2014 - Update from Operation Grange
Operation Grange officers working alongside experts in their field from around the UK, the Policia Judicial and the Guarda Nacional Republicana today, Wednesday 11 June completed an eight day period of work searching specific areas of land in Praia da Luz.
At this time no evidence relating to Madeleine McCann has been identified. However it has given us an essential understanding of the activity on and people that have used this piece of land.
This was the first phase of this major investigation which has been agreed with the Portuguese following the four International Letters of Request submitted to date. More activity has been agreed and we expect that to commence shortly. In addition further requests are being compiled and will be submitted in due course.
The decision to search the “horse shoe” shaped piece of waste ground to the west of Praia da Luz and other sites was as a specific result of the UK’s investigation work to date.
The total area of land searched and surveyed was of approximately 60,000 sq metres and included all utilities, drainage channels and derelict buildings. 41 ground anomalies were identified initially by both aerial survey and ground analysis which were then investigated fully. These included three outside of the original area.
This deployment which was the largest ever undertaken by UK police overseas in a case of this type, highlighted the effective nature of the assistance given by the Portuguese authorities, for which the investigation team and family are very grateful.
The media’s understanding and co-operation following Assistant Commissioner Rowley’s pre deployment briefing has also been noted and appreciated.
There is still a substantial amount of work yet to be completed in the coming weeks and months, which again should be viewed as no more than normal operational activity in a case of this size and complexity. This recent work is part of ensuring that all lines of enquiry are progressed in a systematic manner and covers just the one hypothesis that she was killed and buried locally. This is the same as would be done in the UK for a murder or high risk missing person enquiry. The scientific support staff involved were there to provide the highest level of assurance that this area was searched to the highest possible standards.
7th of May 2014 - Media Interference
We are dismayed with the way the media has behaved over the last couple of days in relation to our daughter’s case. There is an on-going, already challenging, police investigation taking place and media interference in this way not only makes the work of the police more difficult, it can potentially damage and destroy the investigation altogether – and hence the chances of us finding Madeleine and discovering what has happened to her. As Madeleine’s parents, this just compounds our distress. We urge the media to let the police get on with their work and please show some respect and consideration to Madeleine and all our family.
Gerry and Kate
3rd May 2014 - Seventh Anniversary Since Madeleine’s Abduction
Seven years without our daughter, seven years without a big sister for Sean and Amelie. Sometimes we feel totally stuck for words. A lot of the time there are no words. Our situation seems as unbelievable as it did that very first night without Madeleine.
Whenever I find myself becoming paralysed with disbelief, unease, frustration or sadness, I have to refocus my mind on the positives, of which there are many.
The Metropolitan Police force continue to make encouraging progress in their investigation with new evidence being uncovered, fresh information coming in to the inquiry following appeals and subsequently, links being made between people and events. We are hugely grateful to the general public for continuing to support the investigation, especially those who have found the courage to come forward with information despite difficult circumstances. Whilst the MPS are cautiously optimistic of beginning enquiries on the ground in Portugal in the near future, we really hope that this will turn into a concerted effort from the Portuguese authorities as we know there is still a lot to do. Working together is key to the progress of the investigation and a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) could provide a more streamlined way of working with less bureaucracy. It may be seven years since we last saw Madeleine but the passing of further weeks and months as a result of unnecessary delays and barriers are not only frustrating, they are incredibly distressing. Each day without Madeleine and each day of not knowing is another day too many, regardless of how much time has already gone by.
May is an important month for all missing children and their families worldwide with May 25th being International Missing Children’s Day. This May is particularly special in the UK as a new enhanced Child Rescue Alert (CRA) system (to help find abducted and missing children in serious danger) is to be launched by the charity Missing People and the National Crime Agency. This system (based on the highly effective ‘Amber Alert’ in the USA) I believe, will help to save the lives of abducted children and ease the suffering faced by their families. It’s a very exciting step forward.
Throughout the whole month, the charity Missing People are running a ‘Forget-Me-Not’ campaign with several different ways for the public to get involved to help find missing children. One really important and simple way you can get on board is by signing up to the Child Rescue Alert. By registering, you will receive an alert with relevant information, by text or email, when a child is abducted in your area. This way you can join the search immediately and play a vital role in helping to find a child in danger. Please take a minute to visit www.childrescuealert.org.uk and sign up today. There are several other ways to help too – Take a look on www.missingpeople.org.uk.
It goes without saying, but needs to be said….We are grateful beyond words for the continued and unwavering commitment, help and love from all our faithful supporters. Thank you SO much for keeping Madeleine in your hearts.
Thursday, 24 October 2013
We are very pleased that the investigation to find our missing daughter Madeleine has officially been reopened in Portugal. We hope that this will finally lead to her being found and the discovery of who is responsible for this crime.
We once again urge any member of the public who may have information relating to Madeleine's abduction to contact the police in Portugal or the UK.
Please be patient and respect the work of the police as they endeavour to find the answers we so desperately need. In particular, we request that the media consider carefully Madeleine’s safety and the integrity of the investigation in their reporting.
Thank you for your understanding and support.
Gerry and Kate
Gerry and Kate will not be giving any comments regarding the progress of the investigation unless there is a significant breakthrough.
Thursday, 2 May, 2013
SIX YEARS. I don't think we are the only ones who find this hard to believe.
It's difficult to know what to write as each year passes, still without news of Madeleine. In many ways, nothing's changed. We still worry about her, we miss her as much as we ever did, we remain as determined as ever to find her and to know what has happened.
The one thing that has progressed significantly over the last year is the work of the Metropolitan Police. We remain greatly encouraged by their work and the many things they have managed to uncover so far. Their commitment and increasing determination parallels our own and brings us great comfort and reassurance. We continue to hope and pray that the Met working with the Portuguese Authorities will lead to a significant breakthrough. We need to find Madeleine and bring some peace to our family.
In the early days, Gerry remarked that we weren't sure whether this journey would be a sprint or a marathon. It's been much, much more than a marathon (I'm qualified to say that now!) We really appreciate how lucky we have been to be surrounded by such fabulous support for so long. Thank you to all our supporters for being there alongside us and for never forgetting about Madeleine. We're here for the long haul, for as long as it takes. Thank you for being there too.
And finally, a special 'thank you' to everybody who sponsored me to run the London marathon recently. Your kind donations, which have now amounted to more than £21,000 (fantastic!) will allow the charity, Missing People, to continue the search for many missing children and vulnerable adults, as well as provide essential support for their families. Your compassion and generosity will help to ease the suffering of many people. Thank you.
As we approach the end of another year, we'd like to thank everyone again for their amazing support. It is both heart-warming and reassuring to know that after all this time Madeleine still remains in so many people's hearts and minds. This solidarity and commitment gives us great hope. Thank you.
The Metropolitan Police Review of all the material in the inquiry has been underway for over eighteen months. We have been really impressed and greatly encouraged by the work which has been done and its findings to date which are revealing there are definitely many stones yet to turn. We continue to wait and hope that the Portuguese authorities will agree to reopen the case so that the many lines of enquiry can be investigated. As Madeleine's parents, we won't be able to rest until we know that all that can be feasibly done to find her, and the person who took her, has been done.
In the meantime, we will continue to do all that we can to aid the search for our daughter and assist the Review process.
This year, Madeleine's Fund has paid for:
1. A 24 hour, 7 day a week telephone line to receive and capture information from around the world which may assist the investigation
2. A small investigation team, including a Portuguese speaker to help with the above and with campaign activities.
Since March 2012 independent `physical' investigation of lines of enquiry by our team has been put on hold whilst the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) Review progresses. This has been to avoid duplication (and thereby unnecessary expenditure) and to prevent the risk of compromising any work, albeit unintentionally, carried out by the MPS. The private investigation team employed by the Fund continue to cooperate and work with the Metropolitan Police as and when necessary.
3. Part-time administrative support to aid the investigation and campaign to find Madeleine (campaign coordinator and media liaison)
4. The awareness-raising campaign to ensure that Madeleine is not forgotten and to encourage the general public to remain vigilant. This has included the running of the Find Madeleine website.
5. Assistance from a specialist Portuguese communications agency to ensure that our message is communicated as widely and accurately as possible in Portugal, where support and help to find Madeleine is especially needed.
We are very aware that without public help it will be virtually impossible to find Madeleine. It would have been incredibly difficult for us to have maintained a search for her this long without such support, including donations to the Fund. Due to the sales of my book, `Madeleine', the financial position of the Fund has significantly improved from a year and a half ago so we would like to reiterate our gratitude to everybody who bought the book. This has helped the search in more ways than one. Whilst fund expenditure has decreased over the past six months (due to a reduction in investigation spending as outlined in point 2) the Directors feel it is important that the fund maintains reasonable reserves so that the search for Madeleine can be resumed quickly should the MPS review not lead to a reopening of the case in Portugal. We desperately hope of course that the official investigation to find Madeleine will be reopened – and soon – as we still believe this is probably our best chance of finding our little girl.
Despite becoming stronger in ourselves and being able to create as special a Christmas as possible for our children, this time of year will never be as it should without Madeleine. Whilst Gerry and I think it constantly, Sean and Amelie now vocalise it, especially when doing something really nice like putting up the decorations….”If only Madeleine was here too…”
If you know what has happened to Madeleine, or where she might be now, please, please do the right thing: Find the compassion and courage and let us know. Thank you.
This past weekend we sat and opened the many, many Christmas cards which have been sent to us, at what is now our sixth Christmas without Madeleine. The majority were from people we have never met. It was once again a very humbling yet totally uplifting experience. We are deeply touched by the thoughtfulness and compassion which we continue to experience and for the love and hope which shine through for Madeleine. Thank you so much. It means such a lot - and helps us immensely.
MERRY CHRISTMAS to all of our supporters. We wish you a festive period full of laughter, warmth and friendship – and hope for a special 2013.