Madeleine McCann disappearance timeline

Six years on from her disappearance, Portuguese police are set to re-open the case into missing Leicestershire girl Madeleine McCann.

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Pc gave 'misleading' statements to Plebgate probe

Pc Gillian Weatherley has been dismissed from the Metropolitan Police without notice after she was found guilty of gross misconduct.

Andrew Mitchell arriving for a Cabinet meeting at No 10 Downing Street. Credit: Press Association

She was on duty in Downing Street on the day of the confrontation between then-chief whip Andrew Mitchell and fellow constable Toby Rowland in September 2012.

The next day, Weatherley sent a photograph of an email that Rowland had sent to his bosses about the row to another officer, James Glanville. He was later sacked for leaking the information to the Sun newspaper.

The force said she had given "inaccurate and misleading" statements to officers investigating the aftermath of the row, and had been suspended from duty since her arrest in February last year. Prosecutors have already decided not to press charges.

PC sacked over 'plebgate' scandal

Andrew Mitchell resigned as Chief Whip following the scandal Credit: PA Wire

A police constable has been sacked over leaks to the press linked to the Plebgate row, Scotland Yard said.

Gillian Weatherley was found to have breached standards of professional behaviour in relation to honesty and integrity; orders and instructions; confidentiality; discreditable conduct and challenging and reporting improper conduct in a three-day misconduct hearing.

She was on duty in Downing Street on the day of the confrontation between then-chief whip Andrew Mitchell and fellow constable Toby Rowland in September 2012.

The next day, Gillian Weatherley sent a photograph of an email that Rowland had sent to his bosses about the row to another officer, James Glanville. He was later sacked for leaking the information to the Sun newspaper.

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Police will be in Portugal regularly over Madeleine case

Officers have said that they will travel regularly to Portugal as part of the UK investigation, following a meeting with Portuguese police, the Met Police said in a statement.

Assistance Commander Mark Rowley, specialist crime and operations, said: "The meeting was very positive, and we and the Policia Judiciara have a shared determination to do everything possible to discover what happened to Madeleine.

Portuguese prosecutors have reopened the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. Credit: PA Wire

"Colleagues in Portugal fully shared with us the developments in their review, and the fact that they were taking the significant step of applying for the investigation to be formally reopened.

"From the near future, MPS detectives from Operation Grange will travel regularly to Portugal under the terms of the ILOR in relation to the UK investigation."

Read: Madeleine case reopened

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Madeleine officers focusing on foreign sex offenders

by - Europe Correspondent

This is a very significant development in the search for Madeleine, for an investigation to be re-opened there has to be a substantial amount of new evidence and it is clear that the Attorney General feels that the review which has been going on in Portugal has generated that information.

This is also completely separate from the investigation by the British police, so it is quite significant that we have two investigations both finding new things that need to be looked at.

We understand that already police officers from this Portuguese review are on the Algarve, starting to work out a plan of action, who they wish to speak to, what questions they want to put to them.

Amongst that group we think there are a number of men who were though to be in the area at the time who have been on various sex offenders registers both in Portugal and abroad.

Madeleine McCann disappeared from the Ocean Club in Luz in the Algarve, Portugal.
Madeleine McCann disappeared from the Ocean Club in Luz in the Algarve, Portugal. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

What is important about this is it seems to suggest they are moving towards the thought that Madeleine may have been taken by a foreign group of paedophiles.

The investigation team who have been working on this are all specialists in child abduction. Child abduction is not something the Portuguese were absolutely sure had taken place in the early days of this investigation, so it is quite telling that they have shifted their focus that way.

Maddy's parents welcome Portuguese involvement

Madeleine McCann's parents Kate and Gerry said today they are "very pleased" that Portuguese authorities plan to re-open their investigation into her disappearance.

They have said they hope that it will uncover "the answers we so desperately need".

Kate and Gerry McCann have welcomed the Portuguese reopening of the investigation
Kate and Gerry McCann have welcomed the Portuguese reopening of the investigation Credit: Niall Carson/PA

According to the Metropolitan Police, who will be working with the Portuguese investigators on the case, "new lines of enquiry" have opened up which warranted the investigation being re-opened.

National

Met & Portuguese Madeleine inquiries to run in parallel

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Portuguese investigation will run in parallel with Met's Operation Grange #McCann

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AC Rowley: "This is a welcome development but both investigations at relatively early stages, with much work remaining to be done" #McCann

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