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Latest Madeleine McCann Portugal search ends with potential evidence

The most recent search for missing British toddler Madeleine McCann has ended.

Authorities from Portugal, Britain and Germany descended on a reservoir in southern Portugal earlier this week, not far from where McCann was last seen alive as a 3-year-old in 2007.

Potential evidence from the search will be sent to Germany for police to examine. The search “resulted in the collection of some material that will be subject to competent expertise,” Portuguese authorities said.

McCann’s parents were on vacation at the Praia da Luz resort in southern Portugal with their three young children when McCann was snatched from a hotel room on May 3, 2007. Her twin siblings were not taken. The parents were initially suspects in the case but later cleared.

After the first search in 2007 came up empty, authorities resumed intense probes in 2013 and 2014 in Portugal, and in 2020 in Germany.

Kate and Gerry McCann pose for the media with a missing poster showing a computer-generated image of what Madeleine may have looked like in 2012.

A German man, Christian Brueckner, has been named as a suspect in the case, but authorities have not compiled enough evidence to charge him with a crime.

Brueckner, 45, is currently jailed in Germany after being convicted in a different case. In 2019, he was found guilty of raping an American tourist in Portugal while she visited in 2005. He was sentenced to seven years in prison.

Investigators said Brueckner has not cooperated in the McCann case; he has claimed he was miles away when the girl was snatched.

Christian Brueckner is pictured after he was arrested in a different case in 2018.

Police said that Brueckner regularly visited the Arade reservoir where authorities searched this week, calling it his “little paradise.” An ongoing drought in Spain and Portugal dropped the reservoir below its normal water line, allowing investigators to launch their newest search.

The McCann case has captivated people worldwide since her disappearance. Earlier this year, a Polish woman claimed she was McCann before DNA evidence proved she was lying.

With News Wire Services

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