Sheffield’s Kerry Needham is hoping the new twist in the Madeleine McCann investigation will boost the search for her son Ben – missing for 22 years.
But Kerry,41, has slammed Prime Minister David Cameron claiming she has never had the help the McCanns have been given.
Kerry was happy that the Kate and Gerry McCann’s hopes of finding their daughter were given a huge boost with news that the Metropolitan Police were preparing to quiz 38 ‘people of interest’ over the disappearance.
But Kerry has made a heartfelt plea for the same help to track down Ben who was snatched from outside a farmhouse on the Greek island of Kos that was being renovated by Kerry’s parents in July 1991.
Since then Kerry, who has a daughter Leighanna ,20, and her family, from Sheffield, have had to finance the search themselves. Earlier this year she published a book ‘Ben’ to help continuing finance for her search.
Said Kerry: “If British police officers are investigating Madeleine’s disappearance and they are actually searching for her that’s brilliant but we expect the same. – they are no different.
“They are different cases obviously but at the end of the day they are two abducted children and what’s good enough for one family should be good enough for all, that’s my opinion.
“Basically we expect the same as the McCanns . There is no bitterness involved but they are two missing children , they are both British so we want the same treatment.
“If all the stops are being pulled out to find Madeleine, which is only right, then we should have the same help.
“We’ve had to do everything ourselves. We’ve had to physically get on aeroplanes and go and follow up sightings and things like that ourselves.
“The finances have been down to us, whereas millions of pounds have been thrown at the Madeleine McCann case . We haven’t had that . That was one of the reasons I needed to write my book to try and raise awareness and finances for us to continue the search.
“I know we are getting a lot of help from South Yorkshire Police now. I can’t complain about what they are doing but obviously it does come down to resources – they can only work with what they’ve got.
“We want South Yorkshire Police backed 100 per cent by the government and pull out all the stops to find Ben as well as Madeleine.”
When Kerry appealed directly to Prime Minister David Cameron to intervene, as he did in the McCann case, she was left upset and disappointed and binned his reply.
Said Kerry: “I wrote to David Cameron some time ago and eventually I did get a reply but I threw it in the bin. I’ve kept all the letters from the Foreign Office and other places but I threw that one in the bin.
“My letter to him was heartfelt from a mother begging for help. I’ve written to every Prime Minister since Ben disappeared.
“The last straw was when everything went into finding Madeleine and I wrote to him and begged him to help me saying what’s the difference between Ben and Madeleine?
“The reply was a very political letter full of jargon that meant nothing to me. It was a cold, blunt letter with no warmth at all. It wasn’t a letter from a father sympathising and empathising with a mother whose child has been missing for more than 20 years. It upset me.
“It wasn’t personal there were no feelings in it for me. I had asked what was the difference between my family and Madeleine’s family. I told him they were getting everything and I was getting nothing. I asked him why , as Prime Minister, he couldn’t step in and help me.
“The reply wasn’t what I wanted and not what I wanted to hear, it was just a bog standard letter.”I wanted him to step in and help and to push everything. I mean he’d had conversations with Kate and Gerry on the telephone and I was asking him what’s the difference between them and me?
“I’m very happy that the McCann’s are getting all the help but I want the same. South Yorkshire Police have been amazing but more can be done if there are more resources like the Madeleine McCann case has got .”