German suspect in Madeleine McCann case

in News · 12-06-2020 01:00:00 · 0 Comments

British detectives leading inquiries into the 2007 disappearance of Madeleine McCann have made a new public appeal for information.

Met detectives working with German authorities have identified a man currently imprisoned in Germany as a suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance.

This man is described as white and in 2007 is believed to have had short blond hair, possibly fair. He was about 6ft in height with a slim build. He is 43-years-old, but in 2007 may have looked between 25 to early 30’s.

The prosecutor’s office in Stendal, Germany, has also confirmed that it is “trying to confirm the possible connection” between the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007 and a similar crime in 2015, involving the same suspect.

“At this point, we can only say that we are trying to prove the possible connection between the ‘Madeleine’ and ‘Inga’ cases [a child who disappeared in 2015], here in Germany, and to understand the extent to which this can lead to sustaining suspicions, there in Portugal, against the accused”, explained the attorney general of the city of Stendal.

The German prosecutor’s office also confirmed that it opened a new investigation into the 43-year-old man suspected of being involved in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, following an alleged link to a similar crime in Germany.

According to prosecutors in the city of Stendal, about 100 kilometres west of Berlin, the man, identified as Christian Bruckner, may be associated with the disappearance in 2015 of a five-year-old girl.

Christian Bruckner is detained in Germany for sexual abuse of minors, among other crimes and, according to British and German police, is suspected of involvement in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in the Algarve in 2007.

Meanwhile, PJ police have stressed that in 2012 the British police received the elements of the Judicial Police process about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in which there were hundreds of people, including the German now announced as a suspect.

“At least since 2012, when Operation Orange started, the English police received from the Judiciary Police all the elements that were in our possession regarding the case of the child’s disappearance. If Christian Bruckner was there, as hundreds of people were there, and if the suspicions about that person were so evident, he would have been the target of diligences requested by the English, and which have always been authorised in Portugal, but were never requested,” said the PJ.

Faced with criticisms of the PJ’s performance published by some British media, Carlos Farinha from the PJ said that “the lack of relevance that is attributed to the PJ in relation to Bruckner is the same that can be attributed to Scotland Yard or the Metropolitan Police, at least since 2012, because the data about the citizen was also known to them”.

The suspicions of the involvement of a German citizen in the disappearance of the three-year-old English child in Praia da Luz, in the Algarve, only increased in 2017 when another German citizen provided information to Scotland Yard.

For Carlos Farinha, “in theory, everything could have been different”, but “in 2007 and in 2012 it was not known what was known in 2017 and the subsequent developments were also the result of the crossing of information with the PJ. There were also testimonies obtained in Germany and Portugal”.

Christian Bruckner is believed to have lived in the Algarve between 1995 and 2007 and telephone records put him in the Praia da Luz area on the day that Madeleine McCann disappeared.

According to the Associated Press (AP), the suspect’s description corresponds to that of a 43-year-old man who was convicted in December in the city of Braunschweig for the 2005 rape of a 72-year-old American woman in his apartment in Portugal, based, largely on DNA evidence. The suspect denied the charges during his trial and appealed the conviction.

According to a copy of the verdict, sent by the Braunschweig court in response to an AP request, the man was a criminal with several previous convictions, regularly entering and leaving prison.

His crimes include sexual abuse of a child in 1994, when he was about 17 years old, for which he was tried in a juvenile court, as well as a case in 2016, in which he was convicted of abuse of another child and possession of child pornography. Other convictions also include charges of drug trafficking, theft and gun possession violations.

Madeleine McCann disappeared on 3 May, 2007, a few days before she turned four, from the room where she slept, in an apartment in Praia da Luz.
British police first formed a team in 2011 to review all available information, opening a formal inquiry the following year, having so far spent close to £12 million (€14 million) in the process.


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