Friday, October 29, 2010

Madeleine: The seven friends who have stayed loyal

Last updated at 16:33 14 September 2007

The seven friends who dined with the McCanns on the night Madeleine disappeared are nearly all doctors or other professionals and all have vigorously protested the couple's innocence.
Jane Tanner, 36: She provided the most crucial evidence, saying she saw a man carry a child from the apartment wrapped in a blanket at 9.15pm. She thought nothing of it until the alarm was raised an hour later. Her description of the child ' s pyjamas matched Madeleine's.
Dr Russell O'Brien, 36: Ms Tanner's partner, he lived near the McCanns in Leicester before moving to Devon. He left the dining table for 25 minutes to look after his young daughter, who was ill. Last month he had to defend himself against "untrue" reports in Portuguese newspapers that he was to be named as a suspect.
Dr Matthew Oldfield, 37: An endocrinologist at Kingston Hospital, he worked with Gerry McCann in Leicester before moving to London with his wife Rachael. He checked on the McCann children at 9.30pm, but did not look to see if Madeleine was in her bed.
Rachael Oldfield, 36: Recruitment-consultant and mother of a 22-month-old daughter. She spoke for the first time last month to dismiss "hurtful and ludicrous'' reports which suggested police had intercepted phone calls and emails between the McCanns and their friends which contradicted earlier statements they had given. She said: "They are throwing mud and we are not able to defend ourselves."
David Payne, 41: A senior research fellow in cardiovascular sciences at Leicester University, he helped run the Find Madeleine campaign. Last week he spoke for the first time to say: "We know they didn't do it. One of our party saw Madeleine being abducted. We were waiting for something to happen but didn't in our worst nightmare think it would be this."
Dr Fiona Payne, 34: The mother of two and her husband are the only couple in the group reported to have used a baby monitor that night. The Paynes stayed in the Algarve to support the McCanns after Madeleine's disappearance.
Dianne Webster: Fiona Payne's mother. She told police that on the night of Madeleine's disappearance each couple was responsible for looking after their own children. She has given no interviews

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