Gerry McCann attacks media ‘storm’

Madeleine McCann's dad tells MPs that extreme media attention put family at risk

Madeleine McCann’s father Gerry McCann yesterday told MPs on the Culture Media and Sport Committee that his family had been put in danger by ‘some of the most sensationalist, untruthful, irresponsible and damaging reporting in the history of the press.’

McCann was talking to the Committee’s inquiry into press standards, privacy and libel.

Insinuations that Madeleine’s parents were to blame after they reported her missing from the family’s Portuguese holiday apartment in May 2007, had led to hate mail and concern for their safety, McCann told the group.

He said that although elements of the media coverage had ‘undoubtedly been helpful’ in the ongoing search for Madeleine, in general they were more interested in writing about him and his wife – what he called the ‘Kate and Gerry show’ – than about the search.

Their daughter was used as ‘a commodity’ by the British press, he said, and with ‘profits to be made’, there was pressure ‘particularly on journalists to produce stories when really there was nothing much to report.

He said the resulting pressure was so bad that it could have ‘resulted in the complete destruction of our family.

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