Portuguese reservoir to be searched by police for the Madeleine McCann case

Madeleine McCann, age 3, disappeared from a Portuguese vacation apartment 16 years ago.

In the intervening years, the majority of Europe has been the scene of a massive, expensive police operation. A search of a reservoir in Portugal will be conducted by Portuguese police as part of their investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. The search of the Arade dam will begin on Tuesday and will be located approximately 50 kilometers from where the toddler was last seen in Praia da Luz in 2007.

In 2022, Portuguese prosecutors designated Christian Brueckner, then 45 years old, as an official suspect. The search was authorized by the German authorities since Brueckner had been in the area around the time Madeleine, who was three years old at the time, went missing.

Madeleine, from Rothley, Leicestershire, went missing on May 3, 2007 while on vacation with her family in Portugal's Algarve. The Portuguese police stated in a press release that they are coordinating investigations in the Algarve with British officers over the next few days.

Hans Christian Wolters, the German state prosecutor in Braunschweig, informed the sources that the German authorities would release a brief statement of confirmation on Tuesday morning. On Monday around noon, the police cordoned off a portion of the promontory that extends into the reservoir.

It is anticipated that the search will occur on Tuesday and Wednesday. Twenty police officers have been assigned to the search, and blue tents have been erected and roads leading to the man-made dam have been closed. Mr. Wolters treats Brueckner as the primary suspect in the McCann case, despite the fact that he has never been prosecuted in connection with Madeleine's disappearance and has denied involvement.

The state prosecutor stated that a growing body of evidence linked Brueckner to the case, including his mobile phone records indicating he was in the Praia de Luz region during Madeleine's disappearance. German national Brueckner is presently incarcerated in Germany for the 2005 rape of a 72-year-old woman in the same area where Madeleine McCann disappeared.

Between 2000 and 2017, he resided close to the Praia da Luz resort when the McCann family was on vacation there. Not for the first time has the reservoir been combed as part of the investigation. In 2008, Portuguese attorney Marcos Aragao Correia allegedly received information from criminal sources that Madeleine's corpse was in the reservoir, prompting him to pay for specialized divers to examine the waterway.

The most recent search in Portugal related to Madeleine's disappearance occurred in 2014, when British police were granted permission to investigate scrubland close to where she disappeared.

Kate and Gerry, Madeleine's parents, conducted a vigil earlier this month to commemorate the sixteenth anniversary of their daughter's disappearance. In May, they also celebrated their daughter's 20th birthday and vowed to "never give up" on locating her.

"Happy birthday Madeleine. Still missing.  Still greatly missed. Still searching. For as long as it takes," they wrote on the Find Madeleine Campaign's official Facebook page. "We love you and are awaiting your arrival. We shall never surrender."