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Rebuttal of "Fact" 47

Page history last edited by Chinagirl 12 years, 3 months ago

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47. All the main ‘private investigation’ agencies used by the McCanns had expertise in such areas as money-laundering, fraud, state security and intelligence - not in finding missing children. 


Verdict - False and Misleading.

Sources - Media Articles, Gerry McCann's blog, Kate McCann's book, Internet articles.




Summary of Verifiable Facts

  1. The main private investigation teams hired by the McCanns brought with them a variety of expertise.
  2. They did not all have expertise in "money-laundering, fraud, state security and intelligence". 
  3. The McCanns have been open about their reasons for choosing each team.
  4. The first firm of investigators they hired claimed to have re-untied 23 missing children and teenagers with their families.
  5. The second investigator they hired was subsequently arrested on charges of money-laundering and fraud.  This investigator came highly recommended and the McCanns hired him in good faith.  They cannot be held accountable for any subsequent wrongdoing on his part.
  6. The third and current investigators (hired October 2008) use "strategy advisors" and specialists from different fields of expertise as and when required. 




The McCanns have used several private investigators since Madeleine disappeared.  These are:


  1. Metodo 3.
  2. Oakley International.
  3. David Edgar and Arthur Crowley.



From Kate McCann's Book - a primary source

Metodo 3

Kate describes M3 as their "first" investigators - i.e. the first group of private detectives whose remit was to search for their daughter.  As private investigations are illegal in Portugal during an ongoing police investigation, this Spanish firm were selected for their knowledge of "local systems, culture and geography" and because they had links to the Spanish Police who likewise had "good connections with the Portuguese Police".


From The Telegraph:-


 Initially, the McCanns were impressed by Metodo 3's claims: Mr Marco insisted he had a '"100 per cent" success rate and had reunited 23 missing children and teenagers with their families.


"Controversial histories" - an MMRG claim about Metodo 3. 

In an article written by a member of the MMRG, a claim is made that "Many of those involved in running Metodo 3 have controversial histories.".  The justification given for this claim is that a Portuguese criminologist once described the head of M3 as "a crook".  Although no explanation is provided for this accusation, further justification is offered in the form of a comment by a Portuguese blogger indicating that she agrees with the criminologist. 


Despite numerous assertions of wrongdoing based upon various opinions and hearsay, the article concludes with an admission that no member of Metodo 3 has been convicted of any offence.


Misquotation by MMRG. 

The MMRG article claims that:-


 Yet on 29 November 2007, Dr Gerald McCann, on his blog, wrote that the ‘No Stone Unturned’ fund was paying the £50,000 a month fees. Both could not be right.


Actual quote by Gerry McCann. 

In fact, this is not what Gerry McCann said. The following is taken from his blog - a primary source:-


 The fund is also contributing £50,000 per month to support the private investigation.



Seemingly both can be right.

From the Daily Mail on 13th March 2008:-


The couple's multi-millionaire backer, double glazing tycoon Brian Kennedy, will continue to pay Metodo's 3 £8,000-a-month fee on a rolling month-to-month basis.


The Find Madeleine Fund will pick up the Barcelona-based firm's expenses, which have been averaging around £50,000 a month. 



Additional Information.

Further discussion about Metodo 3 including the likely reasons for the termination of their contract can be found in Rebuttal #45.



Oakley International.

This firm was run by Kevin Halligen and came highly recommended to the McCanns.  In her book however, Kate McCann describes the association as a "bad experience".  Kevin Halligen was later arrested on suspicion of fraud and is currently on remand at Belmarsh prison where he is fighting extradition to the US where he is wanted on charges for money-laundering and wire-fraud.


Legal proceedings against Kevin Halligen. 

From the Sunday Times on 25 November 2009:-


 A 48-year-old man wanted by the FBI who allegedly defrauded people across the world, including the Madeleine McCann fund, was arrested last night at a hotel in Oxford.


The McCanns hired Kevin Halligen in good faith and cannot be held accountable for any subsequent wrongdoings on his part. 


David Edgar and Arthur Crowley.

The current team have been working for the McCanns since October 2008.  Kate describes it as "spearheaded by a former police officer with input from strategy advisers and specialists in various fields as required".



Control Risks.

It has been claimed that the first firm of PIS which were hired by the McCanns was Control Risks Group.  This is a risk consultancy firm and Kate McCann makes it very clear in her book that they specialise in corporate security. 


Control Risks Group was provided by an anonymous benefactor, but do not appear to have provided detectives to actually search for Madeleine, but rather as an independent group of advisors to a couple dealing with law enforcement investigating a serious crime in a foreign country. 


According to Kate McCann's book, Control Risks Group 

  1. Set up meetings with "Hugh" - a former intelligence officer who was now a kidnap negotiator and counsellor
  2. Re-took the McCanns' statements as it was feared that parts of these might have been lost in translation/retranslation (this later proved to be the case)
  3. Arranged for forensic testing of the twins hair for the presence of drugs.
  4. Checked the McCanns' home for bugging devices.




Private Investigtors invariably acquire experience in a wide range of areas and given that missing children are a relatively rare occurence, it is natural that there will be few companies who would specialise only in this field.  In her book, Kate McCann tells us the reasons for choosing the various teams of investigators and of the reasons for discontinuing their contracts.  The only private detective to be legally implicated in fraud and money-laundering is Kevin Halligan - the dealings with whom Kate McCann describes as a "bad experience". 


Any wrongdoing by Kevin Halligen has nothing to do with the McCanns or the search for their daughter.


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