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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 September 2007, 23:50 GMT 00:50 UK
Madeleine's Fund statement in full
The board of Madeleine's Fund: Leaving No Stone Unturned Limited issued a statement on Wednesday on its decision not to use the funds to pay for Madeleine McCann's parents' legal costs.

The fund would like to thank everyone for their kindness, support and generosity.

Madeleine's Fund was set up to find Madeleine, support the family and bring the abductor or abductors to justice, and subject to that to help other missing children.

With the sudden dramatic and unexpected turn of events at the weekend the directors had to consider whether legal defence costs could be paid for by the fund.

The board has taken advice from (solicitors) Bates Wells & Braithwaite London LLP and Christopher McCall QC.

The board has been advised that payment of Gerry and Kate's legal defence costs would be legally permissible subject to conditions about repayment in the event of a guilty conviction.

The directors of the fund discussed this today.

The two family directors, Brian Kennedy and John McCann, withdrew from the meeting when the decision was made. I chaired the meeting.

The fund directors realise that there is not only a legal answer and recognise the spirit which underlies the generous donations to Madeleine's Fund, which it is the directors' responsibility to steer.

For this reason the fund directors have decided not to pay for Gerry and Kate's legal defence costs.

We stress that Gerry and Kate have not asked for these costs to be paid.

However, people have already called in offering their financial support.

Any such fund to pay legal defence costs would have to be separately set up and administered.

At the heart of this campaign and fund is a little girl confused, lonely and in need of her parents.

This fund's money will be focused on finding that little girl and leaving no stone unturned.

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