UK

Karen Matthews Blasts Madeleine McCann’s Mother: ‘At Least Shannon Wasn’t Left Alone!’

She also called Madeleine's parent a 'dreadful mother'.

01/03/2017 10:47 GMT | Updated 01/03/2017 11:16 GMT

A woman who faked the kidnap of her own daughter in a bid to collect reward money has branded Kate McCann a “dreadful mother.”

Karen Matthews was jailed after nine-year-old Shannon was found drugged and tethered in the base of a divan bed 24 days after going missing.

Released in 2012 after serving half of her eight-year sentence, Matthews has been thrust back into the public eye after the BBC aired The Moorside, a two-part drama series about the hoax abduction.

PA
Karen Matthews has branded Kate McCann a 'dreadful mother' 

Now it has emerged that Matthews ranted about the parents of missing Madeleine McCann, claiming: “At least my daughter was never left alone!”

Matthews reportedly made the comments in prison during a visit from her former best friend, Julie Bushby.

Bushby, who coordinated the search for missing Shannon, told the Huddersfield Daily Examiner Matthews had raged: “We’re too lower class for them”, adding “it’s one rule for them and another for us, but she [Kate McCann] was a dreadful mum.”

Fotonoticias via Getty Images
Kate McCann's daughter Madeleine (below) disappeared in 2007
Ho New / Reuters

Matthews added: “She left one, two, three babies alone while she was out eating and drinking with her mates. My Shannon was kept away from her family but she was never alone.”

Madeleine was nearly four when she vanished in 2007 from her family’s holiday apartment in Praia da Luz as her parents dined with friends at a tapas bar nearby. The McCanns have spoken of their bitter regret about leaving her and two-year-old twins Sean and Amelie alone. The missing girl would now be a teenager. The family has never given up the search for their daughter and remain hopeful she is alive.

PA
Shannon Matthews was found drugged and tethered in the base of a divan bed 

Matthews’ reported outburst came ahead of a Channel 5 documentary in which Bushby claimed she was certain her former friend and accomplice Michael Donovan did not act alone.

PC Steve Kinchin, the neighbourhood policing team officer for Dewsbury Moor, backed up Bushby’s claims, admitting: “I would say on the balance of probabilities, yeah, there was others involved.” 

He is adamant Matthews was motivated by money: “I can only believe why that particular event took place was purely financial and it was purely down to some type of financial reward. That’s the only thing I can put it down to. So it’s probably greed more than anything.” 

Channel 5
Julie Bushby believes Matthews and Donovan did not act alone