Well, it has been a frustrating road to fight the legalities and jurisdictions of the legal system when it comes to libel and the UK. It took me a long time to find an attorney with a desire to support free speech (even the ACLU didn't show interest) because of public sympathy over an open missing child case and the spectacle of grieving parents. Most attorneys, because they didn't see easy money and worried about the media backlash from standing up to the McCanns, wouldn't touch the case. But, I feel very lucky that Anne Bremner was willing to take the case on and represent me. Unfortunately, after much research over the jurisdictional issues, it became clear that there was not much that could be done to fight the McCanns because of their residency in the UK and the libel laws at play over there. I will explain.
First of all, it isn't about Amazon, so even though they are an American company and are located in Seattle, Washington (right in Anne's home territory), it doesn't matter, because they are not the one's who are claiming my book, Profile of the Disappearance of Madeleine McCann, is libelous. They are simply refusing to sell it which is their right as a bookstore. They don't want to run the risk of being sued by the McCanns. Therefore, it is only the McCanns that can be the focus of a lawsuit. And they live in the UK which mucks things up.
Why? Two reasons. One, the UK libel laws are ridiculously anti-free speech and the case would be far more difficult to win there than in the US where a successful verdict in my favor would likely occur. Two, it costs a blazing fortune to sue someone in another country; one has to bring in attorneys that work there and pay for travel costs and all the likely charges for all the motions and delays, you name it... and I don't have the bucks for that. So, Anne did what was manageable under the circumstances with the letter to the McCanns emphasizing the lack of libel in the book and the right of free speech that should have them cease and desist in their threat to Amazon and myself. Their refusal to allow the book back on the Amazon market speaks volumes and that alone is worth illuminating. Interestingly, my book continues to sell at Barnes and Noble and Smashwords and the McCanns have not gotten it taken down from these venues nor have they sued me in the United States. It is likely they won't because they know they have a poor chance of winning here.
After a goodly period of time trying to decide what to do, it seemed best to force the McCanns' hand in the US rather than the UK. I decided that a book published in the United States with an American publisher puts the ball in my court. My literary agent and I are working to secure a publisher for a book which would be a collaboration between myself and Dr. Amaral bringing in all the issues of the case before a larger audience without the stranglehold the British press and Carter Ruck. I want the public worldwide to understand the truth about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann and the impact this case has had on the world of missing children.
Some of my detractors post commentary on my work on the McCann case, about my book really being libelous, and my fight against the McCanns is wrong. They mock my professional ability to analyze the case and deride my assertion that the Scotland Yard "review" is both cover-up and a fiasco and that the McCann's fund is nothing but a rip-off. If I pursue the case and speak out, I am an attention seeker and trying to make money off of Madeleine. If I am quiet for a while, they claim I have turned tail and run off, no longer finding enough monetary value in the case to continue bothering with it.
I quite frankly could care less what certain persons have to say about me, but I do think it is important to clarify certain points for people validly concerned with the case and how the world of profiling, investigation, and legal matters work. In a word, slowly. Agonizingly slowly. Legal matter take years, sometimes decades for actions to be taken. Sometimes they seem to be moving along quickly in the right direction and then it all comes to an abrupt halt and nothing is done for years. Very, very frustrating. Likewise, with investigations. Everything seems to be moving forward and then all goes quiet. The media? Everyone jumps on board, there is a flurry of articles and TV stories, and then, suddenly, no one gives a damn anymore. An election is now the headliner or a hurricane. Getting the media to pay attention to the deeper issues and spending real time on an area of concern, like the Madeleine McCann case, is near to impossible.
And, money. Money runs the media and politics and book publishing. If a book seems too risky, there will be no publication. If the book won't hit the bestseller list in the first week, no interest. If the story doesn't include hot sex scenes or gruesome mutilations, eh, no one will buy it, so no interest in the book. So many things affect trying to get the truth out that most people give up and this is totally understandable.
I have been dealing with the Madeleine McCann case for five years. It has cost me money and sent hate and stalkers my direction. I would let it go, but the case is extremely important to the future of missing children's investigations and how these missing children are represented in the media (and hopefully not just exploited). It is hard to let go because this particular case is one of the most bizarre cases of a missing child in history, far eclipsing any other case I can think of.
I will continue to pursue the truth in this case. I will look for avenues that allow for progress in understanding the issues and, hopefully, one day lead to justice for Maddie. I am not in this alone; so many others have put in tremendous amounts of time over the years and put themselves in the line of fire to see this case solved and prosecuted. I simply am trying to do what I can do. Sometimes I have a good opportunity to make progress; other times I can't make anything happen. And, in the meantime, I need to continue with my other profiling work and make a living, yes, imagine that! When I go quiet, it is because I have nothing to add to the case knowledge at that time or because I am overwhelmed with other matters of life and work.
I pray that Gonçalo Amaral will win his case and that Tony Bennett will also win his day in court. I will meanwhile hope to finally get the time to update my Profile of the Disappearance of Madeleine McCann and I hope I can get a new book published by a major publisher (one with some balls) that will illuminate this case to a larger audience. I will continue to watch closely all the other people, the many wonderful people online (too many to mention but I must at least thank Joana, Morais, John Blacksmith, and Hidedo for their nonstop efforts in the case) with great websites, insights, and information who refuse to let the case of Madeleine McCann fall into obscurity or fantasy. I must thank all who continue to fight the McCanns ongoing abuse of goodhearted people with their Carter-Ruck lawsuits and their siphoning of money from the pockets of naive people who want the best outcome for Madeleine.
Hopefully, justice for will one day prevail.
Criminal Profiler Pat Brown
September 8, 2012
(5 reviews) based on
Published: July 27, 2011
What really happened to Madeleine Beth McCann in Praia da Luz, Portugal in 2007? Was she abducted as the Gerry and Kate have claimed or did something happen to Madeleine on May 3 in the vacation apartment and the incident covered up? Criminal Profiler Pat Brown analyzes the evidence and takes the readers through the steps of profiling, developing a theory that is intriguing and controversial.