Portugal police resume search for Madeleine McCann

Portuguese police, assisted by German and British agents, resumed the search Tuesday for Madeleine McCann, the British girl who went missing in the Algarve, a tourist region in the south of the country, 16 years ago.

Between 20 and 30 police officers, some of them in uniform, were seen in the area of ​​the Arade reservoir, some 50 kilometers (30 miles) from Praia da Luz, the place where the girl, then 3 years old, was seen with life for the last time in 2007.

The Portuguese police set up a blue tent and cordoned off the area. Eyewitnesses said that the agents began the search shortly before 08:00 in the morning in an area a few kilometers (miles) from the store. More than a dozen police cars and trucks could be seen arriving at the scene.

The Portuguese authorities explained in a statement on Monday that the search was resumed at the request of Germany and with the collaboration of Great Britain.

The prosecutor’s office in Braunschweig, Germany, said in a statement on Tuesday that “criminal proceedings are underway in Portugal as part of the investigation into the Madeleine McCann case.”

“The measures are being applied through mutual legal assistance by the Portuguese prosecutor’s office with the support of agents from the Federal Criminal Police Office,” the note added.

According to the statement, the authorities are not disclosing “more detailed background information (…) for investigative tactical reasons.”

In mid-2020, the German police identified Christian Brueckner, a 45-year-old German who was in the Algarve in 2007, as a suspect in the case. Brueckner has denied any involvement.

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Brueckner is serving a seven-year prison sentence in Germany for a rape he committed in Portugal in 2005.

The suspect is under investigation on suspicion of murder in the McCann case, but has not been charged. He spent many years in Portugal, including in Praia da Luz at the time of Madeleine’s disappearance.

Madeleine’s disappearance has sparked worldwide interest for years, with public claims to have seen her as far away as Australia, and has spawned a host of books and television documentaries.

The reward for information leading to the finding of Madeleine, who would now be 20 years old, already reaches several million dollars.

British, Portuguese and German police are still piecing together what happened when the girl disappeared from her bed in the southern Portuguese resort on May 3, 2007. She was in the same room as her 2-year-old twin brother and sister while her parents They dined with friends at a nearby restaurant.

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