Monday, 12 September 2011

Madeleine Cops In Portugal

 

They may not have welcomed the order from Downing Street to launch an investigation into Madeleine McCann's disappearance, but at least Scotland Yard detectives have made a first visit to Portugual. I can't imagine they were given a warm welcome by their Portuguese colleagues whose work (failure to solve the mystery) the Met team is reviewing. Still, it's a step in the right direction and officially the two groups met "with very good co-operation and liaison will continue." There are 30 Met officers - the equivalent of a murder squad - working on the review and I'm told that a senior officer is having to give regular spending updates to the Home Office which is funding an operation that will cost several millions and last many months. It's four months since the review was launched with great fanfare by the Prime Minister after a plea from Kate and Gerry McCann. The couple had long felt abandoned by the British and Portuguese authorities to hunt alone for their missing daughter. But it's difficult to get much information about the operation from the cops, No 10 or the Home Office. A recent Freedom of Information request for answers to a dozen of so questions has been held up by the Yard's FOI man while he considers if the info sought is in the public interest.

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