German police in Madeleine McCann probe give update as cops search reservoir

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    German police have issued a statement after a new probe into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann was launched 16 years after her disappearance.

    A statement today from the prosecutor's office in the German state of Braunschweig gave an update on the fresh search today (Tuesday, May 23) stating: "As part of the investigation into the case of Madeleine McCann there are currently measures related to the criminal process taking place in Portugal.

    "The measures are being implemented… by the Portuguese law enforcement authorities with the support of officers of the [German] Federal Criminal Police Office.

    "Further information on the background will not be released at this time."

    Another statement made on Monday by the Policia Judiciaria in Portugal announced they would be co-ordinating searches in the Algarve in the presence of British officers.

    As part of the search, police divers were spotted entering the water this morning (Tuesday, May 23) at the Barragem do Arade reservoir, about 30 miles from Praia da Luz, where the missing Brit vanished on May 3, 2007.

    The search comes amid reports that the prime suspect in the disappearance, Christian Brueckner, spent time in the area between 2000 and 2017.

    Convicted sex offender Brueckner, 45, was identified as a suspect by police in Portugal in June 2020, with investigators believing he killed the child after abducting her.

    Brueckner, who is currently in jail for the September 2005 rape of an American woman, has denied involvement in the three-year-old's disappearance.

    He is also facing charges in Germany relating to a number of separate sex offences alleged to have been committed in Portugal.

    He has not faced formal accusations over the disappearance of Madeleine.

    And this isn't the first time this reservoir has been searched in connection with Madeleine's disappearance.

    In 2008, Portuguese lawyer Marcos Aragao Correia had specialist divers search the area after he claimed to have received a tip-off by criminal contacts that Madeleine's body was hidden there.

    The most recent search came in 2014 when British police examined the scrubland near the tot's last known location.

    The new probe comes shortly after the 16th anniversary of the child's disappearance.

    Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry McCann posted a short statement on their Find Madeleine Campaign website on May 3 to mark the tragic day.

    "Today marks the 16th anniversary of Madeleine's abduction," they wrote.

    "Still missing… still very much missed.

    "It is hard to find the words to convey how we feel.

    "The police investigation continues, and we await a breakthrough."

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