Brit, German and Portuguese cops hold ‘secret Madeleine McCann meeting’

Scotland Yard detectives have held a “secret” meeting with German and Portuguese police in Lisbon to “find Madeleine McCann”.

The aim of the meeting was to fine-tune suspect Christian Brueckner’s profile to try to work out where Madeleine’s body had been buried after she was kidnapped, respected Portuguese daily Correio da Manha reported.

The meeting is said to have taken place “recently” at the Lisbon HQ of the Policia Judiciaria, the police force heading the Portuguese probe into the youngster’s May 3 2007 disappearance.

The PJ handed over information relating to searches that had been carried out at locations in the Algarve but turned up nothing, Correio da Manha said.

It added: “Wells and ditches have been looked at with a fine tooth comb, but no signs of the remains of the missing girl have been found.

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“Portuguese, British and German authorities haven’t given up and are continuing to try to gather information about the suspect’s past.

“They regard it as essential to work out his routine in 2007, when Madeleine disappeared and Christian Brueckner was living near the Ocean Club where she vanished from.”

On Monday it was claimed German police want to return to the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz as part of a “final roll of the dice” in their investigation into convicted paedophile Brueckner.

The claim followed German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters’ admission that without new clues, the German 43-year-old will never be quizzed over missing Madeleine.

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Mr Wolters told podcast They’ve Taken Her he was “hopeful” evidence would be found for police to charge and quiz Brueckner, but added: “At the moment our evidence is not so strong we are sure he will be sentenced by the court.

“Maybe we need more witnesses or photos or video, one witness who can tell us the things we don’t know.”

Three wells near Praia da Luz are known to have been searched in July but police and firefighters failed to find any trace of Madeleine.

German authorities are treating the case as a murder inquiry and say they have concrete evidence the missing youngster is dead.

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The abandoned wells are a 15 minute drive from Brueckner’s rented cottage on the outskirts of Praia de Luz, on a narrow road leading down to a beach where the paedophile used to park his VW camper van.

Brueckner is also being probed in Germany over a 2004 Algarve rape and a sex attack on a beach near Praia da Luz a month before Madeleine vanished.

In Portugal prosecutors have reopened their investigation into a sex crime in a playground he was arrested over in 2017.

He was held on suspicion of exposing himself to young children at a playground in Sao Bartolomeu de Messines a 40-minute drive from Praia de Luz.

Police discovered after his detention he was wanted by Germany on an international arrest warrant for child sex abuse and possession of child pornography.

He was extradited to his homeland and was never prosecuted in Portugal following his Algarve arrest.

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The criminal probe was mothballed despite protests from the youngsters’ angry parents but reopened last month.

Brueckner's lawyer Friedrich Fulscher has insisted his client, currently serving a 21-month drug sentence in prison in the German city of Kiel, has nothing to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.

Last month the German drifter, convicted last year in his homeland of raping an American OAP in 2005 in Praia da Luz, was told he would remain in jail after losing a legal challenge against an earlier extradition from Italy to Germany.

He had insisted the “flawed” extradition should lead to him being freed early.

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Madeleine McCann latest

  • Suspect's dark past
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  • Who is Christian Brueckner?
  • The ruling means he will now stay in jail until 2024 at least.

    There has not yet been any official comment from police to the Correio da Manha reports about the recent Lisbon meeting between officials from the three countries involved in the Madeleine McCann probe.

    A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said: "We do not provide a running commentary on this investigation, which remains a missing person enquiry."

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