Madeleine McCann search finally ends as ‘material’ is sent for inspection
| Last updated
The search for Madeleine McCann in the Arade reservoir in the Algarve has come to an end as ‘material’ is sent for inspection.
Portuguese authorities said the material would be sent for analysis following the three-day search of the area.
Authorities were looking in the area for evidence to link the British toddler’s disappearance to Christian Brueckner, a German national who is currently in prison in Germany for the rape of a woman in Praia da Luz in 2005, and is suspected of further rapes and child sexual abuse committed in the area between 2000 and 2017.
He was made a formal suspect by Portuguese prosecutors in 2022.
The search at the Arade reservoir near Silves was part of the investigation and a statement from Portugal’s national police agency today said the ‘collected material’ from the scene will be delivered to the German authorities for further inspection.
It is not clear what the 'material' collected consists of.
German authorities have not explained what triggered the now-ended search operation however state prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters said they were acting based on ‘certain tips’.
He told German public broadcaster NDR that they were searching the area because there were ‘indications’ they would find evidence there.
"We have indications that we could find evidence there. I don't want to say what that is exactly, and I also don't want to say where these indications come from,” he said.
"The only thing that I would clarify is that it doesn't come from the suspect - so we don't have a confession or anything similar now, or an indication from the suspect of where it would make sense to search."
Police removed a number of bags from the man-made dam since the search commenced this week, while investigators continued their search for any sign of the missing British girl, who disappeared at just three years old back in May 2007.
Police photographed the excavation site near the banks of a remote reservoir in Portugal as the fresh McCann search entered its third day.
Investigators previously said they believed McCann was 'alive for two or three days' after she was taken.
The digging operation commenced Wednesday afternoon (24 May) for which authorities used heavy machinery to cut through vast undergrowth at the site, while a mixture of uniformed and plain-clothed officers raked the ground located around 30 miles from where McCann first went missing in 2007.
Officers used shovels to excavate the area alongside sniffer dogs and pickaxes which have also been deployed over the course of the searches.