(dpa) - The parents of Madeleine McCann were Wednesday awarded damages of 550,000 pounds (1.1 million dollars) by a British newspaper group for "false and defamatory" allegations in connection with the disappearance of the 4-year-old.
The Express group, which publishes the Daily Express and the Daily Star, as well as their Sunday equivalents, agreed to an out-of court settlement to prevent libel action threatened by the lawyers of Kate and Gerry McCann.
The money will be donated to the fund created to find Madeleine, who disappeared while on holiday with her parents in Praia da Luz, southern Portugal, on May 3, last year.
Kate and Gerry McCann said they were pleased Express Newspapers had admitted the "utter falsity" of articles suggesting they were responsible for the death of their daughter Madeleine.
There was no evidence that these allegations were true, just as there was no evidence that Madeleine was dead, they said in a statement.