Police chief is now free

Police chief is now free
01 July 2008

See The McCann Files archive:  Gonçalo Amaral - The Interviews (July '08)

Gonçalo Amaral retired since midnight, to "savour freedom of expression"
Tuesday 01 July 2008
Thanks to 'astro' for translation

The controversial coordinator, who was removed from the Maddie case, says he "leaves proud" and that he is not "hurt". His last action was delivering the service mobile phone

The PJ's coordinator, Gonçalo Amaral, who was removed from the Maddie case over an opinion offence, is, from today onwards, a free man. At midnight, he went into retirement and, according to what he told 24horas yesterday, his first day "is going to be beautiful, with plenty to do and the ability to savour the plenitude of his freedom of expression".

Just enigmatic enough, Gonçalo Amaral, aged 49, had his last day at the PJ yesterday, "a perfectly normal day". He arrived early, finished the operation into the process that lead, over the weekend, to the apprehension of two and a half tons of hashish and the detention of six traffickers, and dispatched a few more cases. Before lunch, which lasted from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m., the controversial coordinator of criminal investigation delivered his duty pistol, his badge and his card at the Faro Directory. At the end of the day, around 5.30 p.m., he delivered his service mobile phone.

In the evening, he hosted an "intimate dinner, with two colleagues that came from Lisbon into the Algarve on purpose".

In the investigation

In a statement to 24horas, Gonçalo Amaral revealed that the future includes "continuing to work in the area of criminal investigation, maybe as a consultant". "But not as a detective", he guaranteed. At the same time, the coordinator who is now retired from the PJ is going to carry out a stay at an Algarvian law office, in order to "maybe exercise [law]" within a year.

Gonçalo Amaral is also going to take advantage of his retirement to "dedicate more time to his wife and children" and assured that, despite everything, he does not leave the PJ with hurt feelings, because the institution and its servants deserve him "the utmost respect". "I leave, proud of having served the PJ and of having worked with very good people, excellent professionals that still remain here".

This, despite him confiding to 24horas, in a reference to the controversial Maddie case, that "many people remained upset" with him in Portimão.

Maddie book "is ready"

Gonçalo Amaral, who spent 28 years at the Polícia Judiciária, which he entered as an agent in 1981, having passed through many different departments, revealed to 24horas that the book about the Maddie case "is ready". It was written during his brief holidays, before he returned to the PJ in May, to leave now into retirement. But the publication depends on the "judicial secrecy" which was not lifted yet. The book promises fabulous sales figures, both in Portugal and abroad, mainly in Great Britain.

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