Holiday parents sue for libel over 'drunk' reports

A Northern Ireland couple who had their children taken into care on holiday amid reports they were too drunk to look after them have hired a top libel lawyer to seek damages over media coverage of the incident.

Belfast-based solicitor Paul Tweed, who has represented Hollywood stars such as Harrison Ford, Britney Spears and Jennifer Lopez, today confirmed he has been consulted by Eamon and Antoinette McGuckin from Maghera.

The couple have vigorously refuted claims they were intoxicated when their three young children were temporarily placed in care in Portugal earlier this month.

Instead, McGuckin says he asked staff at the Aparthotel Mourabel in Vilamoura on the Algarve to look after his children while he took his wife, who had become violently ill, to hospital.

The couple have been angered by reports in some media outlets that they were drunk and had passed out.

With the alleged incident happening in Portugal on the first anniversary of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, the story attracted nationwide coverage.

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