Neil Berry – the good, the bad and the ugly

On the stats page on my blog I get what I would call ‘washed’ information. That is, I get some details of where readers come from and some vague details of why they have arrived at my blog.

Neil Berry has been on top of the pile for the reasons for visitors for about 2 to 3 weeks. I don’t get enough information to be sure why this is the case.

For the last few days the uppermost reason for people finding my blog has been ‘neil berry sex offender liverpool’. Since I don’t think I have ever mentioned Liverpool, and since I don’t recall talking about paedophiles other than as one line to be investigated in the Madeleine McCann case, and since I have never portrayed Neil Berry as implicated in the Madeleine McCann case, I think we are talking about the ugly.

If you look at Neil Berry in the PJ files, from a point of view about finding out about the man, you get very little information. Married, 2 kids, visited Luz in April/May 2007, got in the company of Rajinder Balu, was in England when interviewed by Leicestershire Police on 23 Apr 2008. Oh, and he drinks and he watches football. His home address was in Sutton in Greater London, therefore not connected to Liverpool.

There is a Dr Neil Berry in the Chemistry department of the University of Liverpool. He looks vaguely like the Neil Berry of Madeleine fame, except for a significant amount of hair recession, a larger nose and a much larger chin.

So, cut to the chase. Neil Berry as interviewed in Luz re Madeleine McCann. Neil Berry, University of Liverpool. Neil Berry, sex offender in Michigan, USA. Three photos, three quite different Neil Berry’s.

Neil Berry in Luz

Neil Berry 2007

Neil Berry, chemistry department, University of Liverpool

Neil Berry U o L

Neil Berry, United States.

Neil Berry sex offender

Moving on to the bad, I have already written about whether laundryman Mario Marreiros saw anything significant or not. On 8th May 2007 he gave a statement that he had not. Sometime after that it appears the media has him saying there was a suspicious person lurking in the stairwell of block 5 on 2nd May 2007 around 8pm, despite the fact that Mario worked until 6pm. The PJ rogatory questions to Neil Berry concern a laundryman inside the stairwell of block 5 at 6pm on 3rd May. Quite how Mario came to ID Neil Berry as the person he claims to have seen is a mystery. However, Neil stated that he had not been in the stairwell of block 5, had not been in a stairwell with a lift and had not bumped into a laundryman. Neil was in block 6 and block 6 does not have lifts.

Here is the good in the good, the bad and the ugly. If you cross-reference Neil Berry’s PJ statement against other statements and other entries in the PJ files, the match works out pretty well.

If you have checked out earlier posts on planned abductions, you will be able to work out why Neil Berry and Rajinder Balu were bit players on whatever happened on 3rd May 2007. They were close by, just not involved. Their sole ‘crime’ was being in Luz when Madeleine disappeared.

Here is a comparison between the Neil Berry statement , dated 23 Apr 2008, and other relevant statements. Warning! It is very dry, and a simple summary is along the lines that I have written above. These are statements that have a reasonably good fit, with Neil Berry and Rajinder Balu simply being on holiday in Luz.

Neil made two previous statements, the first on 7 May 2007, the second on 8 Jan 2008. The PJ files have one statement only, and Neil was allowed to read a single statement on 23 Apr 2008. Therefore the 7 May 2007 one is possibly an informal statement given while he was in Portugal, though he was supposed to have returned to the UK before then. Why the 8th Jan 2008 statement does not appear in the files is unclear.

3rd May 2007

Neil was with wife and two children at the Tapas Bar around 4pm, when they had drinks with Raj Balu, Jayne Jensen and Anne Wiltshire. {Jayne Jensen and Annie Wiltshire are sisters, were in their mid-50s, were in Luz for a fortnight’s holiday and rose to prominence around Dec 2007 when newspapers said they claimed they had seen Robert Murat near 5A on the night Madeleine went missing. Neither seem to have given statements, though media reports said they had an exhaustive interview with British police. They are also the source of the report that two men were seen around 5C.}

Neil’s wife and children went back to their apartment around 5pm. {Balu – Neil, Neil’s wife and Raj’s wife were having a drink around 5:30, complete with children. Then the wives/children went back.} The four others stayed on. {Balu – Jayne, Anne, Neil and Raj stayed on.}

Neil left around 5:30. Jayne and Anne remained at the bar. Neil cannot remember if Raj remained at the bar. {Balu puts Berry and himself at the bar until after 6pm. He cannot remember if they went back together or separately.}

Neil tried to book dinner at the Tapas restaurant, could not, so he and Raj obtained a meal from the restaurant and dined together. {Balu – decided to get a takeaway and eat with Neil’s family.}

Neil is not sure where he was at 6pm. {Balu thinks it was after 6 when they left the bar.}

To get back to his apartment, Neil crossed the stairs of block 4. {He was actually in 606 and block 6 has 2 stairwells. He had to pass the first stairs to get to the second, the one that led to 606.}

Neil does not remember a lift in any block. {Block 4 and block 5 both both have lifts in a single, central stairwell. Block 6 has two stairwells, neither of which has a lift.}

He was not in block 5, but had to pass it to get back. {He had to use the hill that runs from block 5 to the Tapas reception to get to block 6.}

He thinks he might have been on the opposite side of the road from block 5. {Block 6 is on the opposite side of the road from block 5.}

He does not remember seeing anyone collecting laundry around this time. {He was asked if he was in the stairwell of block 5 when the laundry worker was picking up laundry.}

His children were in bed when Raj and his family arrived around 7pm. {Balu – he and his family arrived around 7pm.}

Raj had a travel cot for his child, which they could not put up. {Balu – A travel cot had been arranged, and Neil was having trouble putting it up.}

Neil went to get an Ocean Club employee, whose name he cannot remember, but she went with them and the cot was assembled. {Balu – Neil and Raj went to get someone from Mark Warner.}

About 8pm, he and Raj went to the Tapas restaurant to place an order, and waited around half an hour for it. {Balu. Between 7:45 and 8pm, he and Neil went for a takeaway, at the Tapas restaurant. It took about half an hour to get served and return.} {Carpenter – a man, or men, were on the esplanade waiting for a takeaway. Stephen Carpenter would meet Neil and Raj on 4th May. His statement says he did not know their names at that point. It stops short of naming them as Neil and Raj.}

They may have had a drink while they waited. {Balu. They had a drink while they waited.} {Carpenter – the man/men had a drink while waiting.}

He cannot remember the meal other than it had red cabbage. {Braised red cabbage seems to be associated with roasts, but perhaps it was a salad.} {Balu is asked what he had, and can remember his food and drink. He is not asked what anyone else ate.}

When they left the Tapas area they took the same route back to his apartment, crossing the road. {To get to block 4 you do not cross any road. To get to block 6, you have to cross the road between block 5 and block 6.}

He thinks his apartment was 4G. {It was 606. Apartment 4G became famous as the McCanns resided there from 4 May 2007 to 2 or 3 Jul 2007.}

The McCanns were not yet in the Tapas restaurant when he and Raj left.

Once back at his apartment, they had dinner and remained there. From 10pm, everything that he did is in his 7 May 2007 statement, and he has nothing to add to that. {Balu. They were still on the balcony after 10. They heard a din below them. They asked what was going on and were told a child had gone missing.}

Stephen Carpenter’s wife Carolyn gave a statement in Britain. It is not in the PJ files. It appears to be very short, as the entry is noted as being two pages long.

In summary, Neil Berry got a takeaway that night and ate it on the balcony of 606 with Rajinder Balu and their families. His only significant connection to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann is that he helped in the searches. He is not the Neil Berry from the University of Liverpool. Neither of these is the Neil Berry on record as a sex offender in the US.

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