Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Madeleine McCann: Hey Clarence, leave those kids alone

Juan Jose Cortes, the father of missing Mari Luz Cortes, the little girl the McCanns have tried to hijack as a tool in their "Protect The McCanns And Their Protectors" campaign, is considering taking legal action after his daughter's photo was used without his permission.

Enter Clarence Mitchell, a man with an impressive resume - at least on paper.

Former BBC correspondent, all round media journeyman involved in coverage of some of the biggest crime stories in recent British history, deeply involved in coverage of the post-Diana era and the death of the Queen Mother and let's not forget, Director of the government's Media Monitoring Unit.

A man it would be safe to assume would be acquainted with all aspects of media and publicity campaigns.

Not the sort of man one would expect to defend the unauthorised use of a child's image by claiming they had permission because a friend of Kate's had spoken to the family. That however, is exactly what he did.

Is this mysterious friend, (why are so many people and organisations cited by the McCann's never actually named?) an authorised representative of the family? Do you have the customary written permission on file ready to produce if required?

The truth is Clarence, Team McCann thought they could ride roughshod over a family in less fortunate circumstances than the McCanns. "They would not dare not say anything old chap" was the real reasoning behind this shameful episode.

Clarence, just how many lives do you and the rest of the tacky, rag-tag army of protectors and hangers on, intend to intrude upon in your quest to present the McCanns as something they never have been? How many more children are to become unwilling players in The Betrayal of Madeleine McCann?

It has been reported in the Portuguese press that you said the reactions of the family of Mari Luz were, "surprising and shameful."

I guess to you and your clients a man trying to protect his daughter would be surprising - after all, Kate and Gerry hardly went out of their way to protect Madeleine. They were even quite happy for the twins faces to be shown until after they arrived back in the UK - as long as it suited their purposes.

As for shameful, what can be more shameful than those with wealth, position and power, attempting to use a grieving family for the sole purpose of presenting themselves in a positive, touchy-feely light?

Sorry - I should have realised you wouldn't know the answer to that one. If you did, you wouldn't be working for your new chums.