Prosecutor investigating Madeleine McCann’s disappearance says ‘nothing’ suggests she is still alive

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German authorities say there are 'many pieces' of the Madeleine McCann 'puzzle' pointing towards suspect Christian Brueckner (pictured)

German authorities say there are ‘many pieces’ of the Madeleine McCann ‘puzzle’ pointing towards suspect Christian Brueckner (pictured)

German authorities say there are ‘many pieces’ of the Madeleine McCann ‘puzzle’ pointing towards suspect Christian Brueckner.

Prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters admitted there still was no ‘smoking gun’ evidence enabling charges to be brought against the 43-year-old paedophile over the British youngster’s disappearance.

But he insisted in an interview on Portuguese state broadcaster RTP, referring to Brueckner only by his first name and initial of his surname: ‘All I can say is this is like a puzzle and there are many pieces that lead us to believe Christian B is responsible.

‘One of the pieces is the signal from the mobile phone he was using at the time Madeleine McCann disappeared and has been shown to have been in the area of the Ocean Club resort where she was staying.’

Making his strongest assertion yet to justify the German decision to treat her disappearance as a murder case and not a missing persons’ inquiry, Mr Wolters added: ‘The result of our investigation does not point in any way to the possibility the suspect might have kept Madeleine alive.

‘We have nothing to indicate she could be alive.

‘Everything we have points to her being dead. We have no margin of manoeuvre.’

He also rubbished reports earlier this week that German police believed the chief Madeleine McCann suspect had an accomplice, and addressed earlier accusations made on Portuguese TV Brueckner’s ‘ex’ girlfriend Nicole Fehlinger was involved in an Algarve burglary he was linked to.

The Braunschweig-based prosecutor said: ‘Naturally we investigate everyone known to us to see if they had something to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.

‘This woman was the suspect’s ex-girlfriend and she is classed as a witness but we don’t have any reason to believe she is linked to this crime.

Prosecutor investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann (pictured) say there is 'nothing' suggesting she is still alive

Prosecutor investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann (pictured) say there is ‘nothing’ suggesting she is still alive

‘She is not a suspect for us. We are only investigating Christian B, nobody else.

‘At this stage we believe he acted alone in this case.’

He also rebutted claims made by disgraced former police officer Goncalo Amaral, who met with Brueckner’s defence lawyer Friedrich Fulscher last week in Portugal, that the German was being ‘scapegoated.’

The controversial ex-cop, who was removed from the initial Madeleine McCann investigation for criticising British police, is involved in an ongoing legal battle with her parents Kate and Gerry over his insistence she died by accident in their apartment and they covered it up.

He told the RTP channel’s Sexta as 9 show: ‘I know this former inspector speaks a lot and comments on our work.

‘We’re not going to get into a war of words. All I will say is that we have carried out a very serious investigation and there is no indication whatsoever Madeleine McCann’s parents are linked to her disappearance.

‘On the other hand we have a lot of evidence pointing to Christian B killing her.

‘Goncalo Amaral knows how he reaches his conclusions and that’s not up to us to judge.’

His comments came as Brueckner’s lawyer dramatically declined an opportunity to rule out his client’s involvement in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance, and appeared to accept he had funded his nomadic Algarve lifestyle through house break-ins.

Mr Fulscher has always insisted Brueckner was not involved in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance and claimed prosecutors are basing their case on information from dubious witnesses.

But asked on Friday night by investigative reporter and Sexta as 9 presenter Sandra Felgueiras if Brueckner had told him he had ‘nothing’ to do with the May 3 2007 disappearance, he paused for several seconds before responding: ‘Everything that’s said between a client and his lawyer is protected by confidentiality and therefore I cannot say what he tells me.

‘But you can be sure that doesn’t mean he has something to hide.’

Quizzed about reports Breuckner used to live off the proceeds of burglaries he committed on the Algarve, he admitted: ‘It’s not something that surprises me.

‘As his lawyer it wouldn’t surprise me if he was convicted for these burglaries.’

Mr Wolters revealed earlier this month German authorities had asked Portuguese police to investigate ‘more sexual abuse and rapes’ they believe Brueckner could have carried out on the Algarve.

He has already been linked to a sex offence on a beach near Praia da Luz a month before Madeleine vanished and has been confirmed as an ‘official suspect’ in the 2004 rape of Irish tour rep Hazel Behan.

Ms Behan waived her right to anonymity in June to say she believed the masked man who targeted her in her Algarve apartment could have been Brueckner. 

His lawyer has insisted he has nothing to do with the horrific sex attack.

Brueckner is currently in Germany’s Kiel Prison for drugs offences and is due to start a seven-year sentence for the 2005 rape in Praia da Luz of an American OAP.

He was convicted of the horrific sex crime late last year in Germany.

A former girlfriend spoke out last month to reveal he had sexually assaulted her five-year-old daughter and would also launch violent attacks against her during their nine-month relationship in the northern Germany city of Braunschweig.

The crimes, which sparked a European Arrest Warrant and his 2017 extradition to Portugal, ended up with him receiving a 15-month prison sentence.

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