– Expectation and disappointment regarding two cases of missing children
Machado, Helena, Santos, Filipe (2011)
Les chiens n'ont pas été appelés spécifiquement pour faire des recherches dans la maison de RM. Mark Harrison, appelé par Guilhermino Encarnaçao, a recommandé de faire venir ces chiens pour effectuer des recherches globales et a lui-même recommandé de commencer les opérations à l'endroit où MMC avait été vue pour la dernière fois, l'appartement G5A.
However, the dogs would
On 7 September 2007, after an interrogation by the Polícia Judiciária, the Ministério Público (Public Prosecution) decided to make Madeleine McCann’s parents arguidos on the grounds of
Ce n'est pas vrai, il suffit de lire le rapport intermédiaire de Tavares de Almeida, la PJ suspecte une mort accidentelle, même pas un homicide involontaire et le recel de cadavre pour des raisons carriéristes.
On the 9th of the same month, the couple and their other two children returned to England, stating their intention to keep on searching for their missing daughter. After their departure, the news speculated about the possibility of arranging further interrogations as the police waited for the final reports on the traces sent to the Forensic Science Service.
Il n'y a aucun rapport du FSS en décembre ou janvier dans les PJFiles.
On 19 March 2008, after the McCanns threatened the media with defamation lawsuits, they were given a monetary compensation and public apologies by several British newspapers belonging to the Express Newspapers group.
The PJ [Polícia Judiciária] decided to search the whole house looking for traces of the child, resorting to the Laboratory of Scientific Police. Although the dwellings had been cleaned, the experts, through the use of reagents, managed to detect blood traces on the floor, namely in a mark of some dimension, as well as in a mop. The PJ gathered these with other data that they already possessed and concluded: Joana was murdered by her mother and uncle. (Correio da Manhã 28 October 2004).
According to our sources, the elements of the Scientific Police, who wore white overalls and latex gloves, left nothing unexamined inside the small house. (Correio da Manhã 23 October 2004).
I’m convinced that Leonor and João Cipriano are guilty. But what the heck...Couldn’t they have managed any tiny piece of evidence that would leave me with a clear conscience? (Correio da Manhã 12 November 2005).
Trois quarts d'heure se sont écoulés entre la découverte de la disparition et l'appel à la GNR par le réceptionniste de l'OC, à la demande du gérant. Les parents avaient, chacun, un téléphone cellulaire et étaient, chacun, convaincus que leur fille avait été enlevée.
Le premier pollueur de la scène du crime a été le père de la disparue, qui a expérimenté l'ouverture du volet roulant de l'extérieur. L'altération de la scène du crime par des témoins est prévue dans le CPP, et sanctionné.
In the Joana case the collection of evidence in the supposed scene of the crime may have happened more than ten days after she was reported missing and the house remained inhabited by her stepfather and another man. In the Maddie case, the McCanns’ holiday apartment was searched on the following day to the child’s disappearance,
La police scientifique était sur place 3 heures après la disparition.
but it wasn’t until almost three months later, when the British trained dogs were brought in, that the minute specs of blood and bodily fluids were said to be detected in the apartment and rented car.
Le motif invoqué a été de ne pas risquer des contestations britanniques quant aux résultats, un effet direct du courant hostile vis-à-vis d'une police jugée incompétente, qui se développait dans les médias, orchestré par le spin doctor.
The Forensic Science Service was then described as “Europe’s most sophisticated laboratory” (Correio da Manhã 10 August 2007), or “one of the most sophisticated in the world” (Correio da Manhã 16 August 2007), as an implicit way of asserting the competence of the laboratory and the trustworthiness of the results they would eventually achieve. As a safeguard of the Portuguese scientific ‘competence’, the same newspaper states that a forensic molecular biology named Low Copy Number (LCN) is also possible to perform in Portugal, although admitting that there are contingencies in the use of the technique:
In Portugal England and the USA already apply the technique on a daily basis but the necessary logistics demands a large budget. In Portugal, the greatest difficulty relies on the lack of genetic databases and the inexistence of exclusively reserved areas to perform this type of analysis (Correio da Manhã 24 August 2007).
This technique, popularized by the ‘CSI’ television series, allows genetic identification from very small traces (...) The Low Copy Number technique came to enable the identification of individuals from trace amounts of latent fingerprints, left by the mere contact between the skin and paper, knives, pens, ropes, strings or weapons. The collection of these samples, invisible to the naked eye, is a powerful mean of forensic identification but its analysis is more complex than most. (Correio da Manhã 26 October 2007).
Although they weren’t completely conclusive (there is a 78.95% correspondence with Maddie’s genetic profile concerning the blood traces found in the car used by the McCanns), the truth is that the probability of the girl’s body or any of her clothes have been in the rented car after the disappearance has now increased. (Correio da Manhã 9 September 2007).
Il serait honnête de dire que l'invention provient de Martin Brunt (Sky News) ou a été concoctée avec lui....it revealed an exact correspondence to Madeleine McCann’s DNA” (Correio da Manhã 10 September 2007); “in the rented Renault Scenic there were blood traces compatible in almost 100% with the missing girl’s. (Correio da Manhã 16 September 2007).
Un rideau de fumée, oui.
Unlike Joana’s mother and uncle, the McCanns were both well-off, highly educated professionals, with connections inside the British government and media, who received substantial financial donations, thus affording the most expensive British and Portuguese lawyers.
Un peu beaucoup simpliste. Les MC sont manifestement des gens ordinaires qui sont devenus des célébrités contre leur gré. Mais, s'il fallait en passer par là pour être considérés comme innocents, ils étaient prêts, car le jeu en valait la chandelle. Non, ils n'étaient pas riches, non ils n'étaient pas des professionnels époustouflants, non ils ne cpnnaissaient pas de ministre, oui ils ont reçu de l'argent, beaucoup d'argent, grâce à un effet "challenge" et une bonne part de cette argent est venue de gens simples qui ont été très nombreux à envoyer une petite obole. L'argent de Madeleine's Fund leur a permis de s'offrir les meilleurs avocats et PR, oui.
Hence, since the interrogations produced no ‘confessions’ like in the Joana case, the prosecution became completely dependent on the analysis’ results from the British laboratory, as duly noted by the Correio da Manhã which stressed their importance:
In the absence of material evidence and confessions by the arguidos, the investigators are forced to rely on scientific evidence, the only ones that could actually defy the parents’ theory. (Correio da Manhã 29 November 2007).
The samples, besides being microscopic, were very contaminated and not even the resort to the most modern technology allowed the decoding of every DNA element. (Correio da Manhã 4 November 2007).
For many detectives, the evidence appears to be enough, but the truth is that it may raise doubts in court. And in a case such as this one, where much of our authorities’ credibility is at stake, one cannot be overcautious. (Correio da Manhã 2 February 2008).
Media interpretations are consequential. Beyond providing entertainment, the media serve as a form of pedagogy. Through popular narratives and repeated images, people learn how to deal with social dilemmas. (Nelkin, 1994: 29).
Encore très simpliste, il faudrait mettre en regard de nombreux facteurs, outre l'effet CSI, qui a bon dos. Le public a considéré que cette affaire avait bénéficié d'un traitement spécial, "avec des pincettes". Maints policiers et magistrats ont dit que si des Portugais avaient laissé seuls, sans surveillance, des petits enfants, ils auraient été sanctionnés. Personne surtout n'a compris qu'une mère ne réponde pas aux questions d'enquêteurs à la recherche de son enfant et de qui a pu arriver. Ce n'est pas le moindre mystère de cette affaire.
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