Sunday, October 17, 2010


Madeleine McCann is a 4 year old girl who went missing from her parents’ holiday hotel room in Portugal 5 months ago. Danie Krugel is an ex-policeman in South Africa who believes he can pinpoint the location of missing people anywhere in the world.

He does this using his special magic box, which works by something to do with “quantum physics”, “complex and secret science techniques”, a secret energy source which nobody is allowed to know about, and a strand of the missing person’s hair or some other source of DNA. His secret method can miraculously pinpoint the missing person’s location anywhere in the world on a map, using their DNA and international GPS technology, so he says.

This might sound ridiculous to you, but today Krugel is featured in a completely serious news story in the Observer newspaper about the hunt for Madeleine McCann, where they report – in all earnestness – that he has found traces of her body on a beach in Portugal. This is not a quirky story about an optimistic eccentric. There is no mention of his top secret quantum technology; instead they explain that “forensic DNA tests” by Krugel have revealed traces of Madeleine’s body in a specific location.

To avoid any ambiguity I’ve reposted their article in full below, because as we know from their recent and entirely bogus front page MMR scare, news stories like this can sometimes disappear from the Observer archives, unannounced and without trace.

Psychics telling your future at the fairground are fine. When it comes to newspapers printing horoscopes, I couldn’t care less. But exploitative misreporting of this scale on this subject is contemptible. You’re as capable as I am of reading about Krugel’s work, and so are the Observer, but still this reputable UK newspaper is presenting magic quantum box tomfoolery as serious DNA evidence on the whereabouts on a little girl who has disappeared and may well be murdered.

Or maybe Krugel’s onto something – I’m perfectly prepared to be convinced – in which case perhaps the Observer could run us through the evidence for his magic quantum box. And while they’re getting that piece together, maybe Krugel would like to apply for James Randi’s excellently passive aggressive one million dollar prize for anyone who can prove their paranormal abilities.

Okay, to be fair, a friend of mine who works as king geek in a forensic science lab points out that the Observer have at least led the field in being unbonkers on the “real” “McCann DNA evidence” “story” a month ago.,,2165453,00.html
And more than that, it seems the Observer are in excellent company.
Here’s another totally straight faced piece in the Telegraph:
And the tabloids have picked it up too, although at such length that you can at least tell, with their coverage, that there is something fishy about the Krugel device. Even so, according to The Sun “Krugel has scoured Pria da Luz in Portugal and the surrounding area for clues using hi-tech equipment he developed which uses a person’s DNA to track them down.”

In The People Krugel says: “The technology I use picks up a trace using DNA and complex and secret science techniques. The trace was strongest in one area. The machine was highlighting the same co-ordinate and it kept drawing me back there. It left me convinced Madeleine was there. I’m convinced Madeleine’s body is in Praia da Luz. Too much time has been spent accusing Kate and Gerry and not enough searching for Madeleine.”
According to the News of the World “his method uses DNA fragments and Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite technology to find missing persons, alive and dead.” The story also appears in the Daily Mail.
Here’s your man Danie Krugel.
And here he is discussing his invention in a South African documentary on his work. “If you get a signature sample of something… let’s call it organic or non-organic… a very small sample. I have developed a method to use that small sample and to create data that I use to search for its origin. So you transmit and you receive.” [Interviewer]: “Is there anything metaphysical involved? Are you psychic?” Krugel: “I‘m a Christian and I put it clearly… this is science, science, science! That is what is so fantastic about it. It is tied to the science we hear but people didn’t realise it… it’s just science. That’s it.”
Science, science, science! That is what is so fantastic about it.