In a case of “second time proved right” former PJ coordinator Gonçalo Amaral has seen a national court take his side in the long-running civil action taken out by the parents of Madeleine McCann.
The Supreme Court convened on Tuesday to consider the case. SIC television was the first media source to report that judges decided to dismiss it.
This means that Supreme Court judges do not consider there are grounds to appeal against the decision given in April last year by Lisbon’s Appellate Court which ruled that Amaral was well within his rights of freedom of expression when he wrote the book: “Madeleine: The Truth of the Lie” (click here).
SIC’s report says the McCanns have now “lost the case against Gonçalo Amaral” as “there are no further opportunities to reverse the decision” of the Appellate Court.
Whether this is true remains to be seen. The McCanns lawyer Isabel Duarte has intimated to British press that the couple could take the case to the European Court of Human Rights if they lost in Portugal.
The Supreme Court’s full judgement will be published later this week, and is expected to award all costs against the McCanns.
British tabloid journalists on their way to Portugal for the reading of the decision have told the Resident that this will be “devastating” for the couple who initiated the case against Amaral almost a decade ago. At the time, damages sought for the thesis that Madeleine had died in a tragic accident which her parents had subsequently concealed were set at over €1 million.
For now, Amaral is keeping the silence he has always said was so necessary for justice to be allowed to work. The Projecto Justiça Gonçalo Amaral website, which has kept supporters up to date with his battle for vindication has posted two announcements since the breaking news on Tuesday.
The first said simply “Justice has prevailed”, the second: “Thank you”.
“This is the culmination of a costly, difficult process that caused a lot of pain and distress, not only to the persons directly involved, but also to many who refused to be silenced, both on the internet and ‘offline’, said the second post, published on Wednesday.
“Nonetheless, it also brought out the very best in so many people who have shown their support, both morally and materially, over so many years. It has been tremendously encouraging and heartening, and it must unequivocally be stated that without you, it would simply not have been possible to walk this road towards Justice.
“We await the publication of the Court’s decision and will update you soon with relevant information.
“In the meantime, there are simply no words that even remotely match the strength and the tenacity that you have dedicated to this process.
“So a mere “Thank you” will have to do”.