Pages 233 to 238
Jeronimo Tomas Rodrigues Salcedas
Occupation: Barman / Waiter
Place of Work: Ocean Club
He is the son of Portuguese immigrants who have been living
in England for the past 15 years, they live in the city of
Swindon, near Bristol. His father works for the English
Consulate and his mother is a teaching assistant.
As regards the witness' professional qualifications, he
completed a professional course in hotel and tourism and can
also carry out ludical activities with children as an
'animator' and has worked in these kind of activities for
four years with groups of children aged three (during the
first year) and aged three to five (during the following
years). After this kind of work he dedicated himself to the
automobile sector and worked for Honda for a very short
time, about three weeks, as he could not adapt to this kind
of work. After a stay in England during which time he did
not find work, about three weeks, he decided to come to
Portugal to work in tourism, having contacted a cousin of
his who works in the Algarve, Miguel Coelho who is Head Chef
at the OC, who helped him be taken on immediately as barman.
He began work at the club on 2nd April.
When asked for the reason that he changed professions
(children - automobiles) he said that he did this because he
had simply reached saturation point. He says that ever since
he has been working this has always been the case. He never
stays in the same kind of work for a long time. However,
when asked he says that it was always positive, that he
likes to work with children. He never had any problem in
this activity or in carrying out his profession. He
remembers that the name of the establishment where he worked
was called 'Sixpenny' in Swindon.
When asked, he says that he currently lives with his cousin,
Miguel Coelho aged twenty two, in an apartment in Luz, near
to the beach.
The witness earns 550 Euros a month plus tips. He pays 350
Euros as monthly rent as well as domestic costs which he
shares in equal part with his cousin.
Currently, and for the last three or four weeks he has
worked the night shift, from 16.00 to 24.00. He sometimes
exchanges shifts with a colleague and in these cases works
from 09.30 to 17.30.
When asked if he is aware of Madeleine's disappearance, he
replies yes and says that it is a very delicate situation
and that nothing else has been spoken about since she
disappeared. In spite of having already observed many photos
of Madeleine he claims that he could not state with any
certainty that he had seen her at any moment, the same goes
for whom he now knows to be her twin siblings. The specifics
of his work do not leave him with much time to focus his
attention on the children that were around, although as he
has stated previously he worked with children of Madeleine's
approximate age for almost four years.
When asked, he says that many children would be present
around the Tapas restaurant during the day, as just outside
the restaurant there is a small playground, near to the
pool. The presence of children would reduce significantly at
night time, also because there were fewer people dining in
the restaurant, about 20 - 30 meals were served.
With regard to the group Madeleine's family belonged to, he
remembers there were nine adults, he does not know how many
children were associated with them as they brought them to
dinner. He think the group arrived at the club on 28th April
(Saturday), a day when the Tapas restaurant does not serve
dinner because it closes at 19.00.
In this order of ideas he thinks that the group in question
dined at the Tapas restaurant for the first time on Sunday
(29th May). He does not know if they had lunch as he was not
on duty at that time.
Of the whole group Madeleine's father was without doubt the
most noticeable person as he was the most talkative, very
pleasant and with a nice manner. In this respect the whole
group showed a pleasant friendliness.
They would arrive for dinner according to daily bookings
which they did themselves at the reception, he remembers the
bookings were always made for 20.30 or 21.00. This booking
could be made on the same day until 16.00, it was necessary
to show proof of accommodation as well as the number of
persons included in the booking. He says that the group
arrived in phases but no long delays occurred.
When asked, he said that they would normally stay at the
restaurant until 23.30 - 24.00, although some of them would
leave earlier, at about 23.00. They were people who showed
their satisfaction with the food and would consume on
average 8 bottles of wine (4 red, 4 white) between the nine
of them, which he considered to be normal consumption for a
group of such a number.
They did not drink coffee and as regards after dinner drinks
(digestivos) they only consumed these once on 2nd May.
He noticed, because it was obvious, that some of the members
of the group would regularly leave the restaurant to do
something, which he gradually came to realise was
'controlling' the children. Even so, he was always convinced
that the children were in some place belonging to the Ocean
Club, under the care of a Mark Warner company associated to
This company provides child care services until 18.00,
however if there was a request these hours could be extended
to the evening period, from 20.00 to 23.00, paid as an
Referring to the day of 3rd May when Madeleine disappeared,
the witness says that he was working.
At that time, at about 22.20 - 22.30 he noticed that there
was only one person sitting at the group's table, the oldest
of them and he asked her jokingly whether they had left her
The person in question said that the others had gone to the
apartment to look for a girl who had disappeared. Seconds
later Madeleine's father appeared, greatly agitated, looking
for his daughter everywhere, obviously and immediately
heading towards the pool and surrounding areas.
Shortly afterwards Luz Ocean Club was in a state of absolute
commotion. Everyone was trying to help in the search for
Madeleine which was multiplied in numerous search actions
over a large perimeter. The witness immediately perceived
the seriousness of the situation. Madeleine's mother was
shouting desperately for her daughter. The witness told
another chef at the Millenium restaurant so that he would
also help in the searches.
He was part of a team together with one of the other MW
employees, Leanne, of English nationality, with whom he
searched for the girl until 05.00. He remembers that during
the early morning hours there were about 50 - 60 people
searching who covered all the access routes to the club, the
village of Luz, beach, amongst others. The search was
fruitless. Madeleine was not and still has not been found.
Considering his previous profession and using the
sensitivity that he had from working with children, the
witness said that there was no situation with him or with
third parties that he had noticed that caused him to have
any doubts that such a situation could occur. Even forcing
his memory he has no idea of anything that could help locate
When asked he says that he was working at the OC and has no
idea whether situations of theft from the apartments were
No more is said.
Reads, ratifies, signs.