Robert Murat - an apology

ON 15 MAY 2007 an article about Robert Murat headed "Madeleine: He jokes of being 'No.1 suspect'" was published in which we reported a number of defamatory allegations about Mr Murat in connection with the abduction of Madeleine McCann.

The article wrongly accused him of "hanging around" the scene in a manner which recalled the Soham murders. Likening his behaviour in this way to that of Soham murderer, Ian Huntley, suggested that he was involved in the abduction of Madeleine McCann.

It was a seriously defamatory allegation and wholly untrue.

We also wrongly implied that he had been unfeeling and insensitive about Madeleine McCann's disappearance and had lied about his role in the police investigation. That was not our intention.

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We accept that Mr Murat was assisting the police investigation into Madeleine McCann's disappearance and that his behaviour was entirely proper throughout, and we are happy to make that clear.

We apologise to Mr Murat for the hurt, distress and damage to his reputation caused by the article.