A German man has been identified as a suspect in the case of then-3-year-old Madeleine McCann who disappeared 13 years ago while on a family holiday in Portugal. File picture: AP
A German man has been identified as a suspect in the case of then-3-year-old Madeleine McCann who disappeared 13 years ago while on a family holiday in Portugal. File picture: AP

Madeleine McCann case: Lawyer for German suspect mum as probe continues

By Paul Carrel And Catarina Demony Time of article published Jun 6, 2020

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Berlin/Praia da Luz, Portugal - A lawyer

representing the German man suspected of murdering Madeleine

McCann, a British girl who disappeared in Portugal in 2007 aged

3, said on Saturday he had no comment on the case.

Germany is investigating a 43-year-old German national on

suspicion of murder, the Braunschweig state prosecutor said on

Thursday.

Lawyer Jan-Christian Hochmann confirmed he was representing

the suspect, Christian B.. He declined to confirm the suspect's

surname in full.

"It is correct that I and my colleague David Volke are

representing him, but we are not making any comment at the

moment," Hochmann told Reuters by phone.

McCann vanished from her bedroom on May 3, 2007 while her

parents were dining with friends nearby during a family vacation

in the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz.

A woman exercises in Praia da Luz, the town with the resort in which three-year-old Madeleine McCann disappeared in 2007. Picture: Rafael Marchante/Reuters

The disappearance sparked an international search, with

missing posters of the little girl's face papered across the

world and celebrity appeals for information that could help

track her down and bring her abductors to justice.

No body has ever been found.

Braunschweig state prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters said on

Thursday: "We assume that the girl is dead."

The family and their supporters have always held out the

hope that she might be alive somewhere.

Kate and Gerry McCann pose for the media in 2012 with a missing poster depicting an age progression computer-generated image of their daughter Madeleine at nine years of age, to mark her birthday and the 5th anniversary of her disappearance during a family vacation in southern Portugal in May 2007. File picture: Sang Tan/AP

Wolters said on Thursday the suspect is a sex offender with

multiple convictions, including for sexual abuse of children.

He lived in the Algarve between 1995 and 2007 and worked in

the catering industry, burgled hotels and holiday flats as well

as trading drugs, German police said. He is currently in

detention over a different matter.

Joaquim Braz, 50, who lives in Monte Judeu, around 10 km (6

miles) from Praia da Luz, said he remembered the suspect.

An exterior view of the prison in Kiel, Germany. British police said a German man has been identified as a suspect in the case of 3-year-old British girl Madeleine McCann, who disappeared 13 years ago while on holiday in Portugal. Police from Britain, Germany and Portugal launched a new joint appeal for information in the case Wednesday. Picture: Carsten Rehder/dpa via AP

"I didn't like him very much. I remember him very well but

he kept to himself," said Braz.

In Praia da Luz itself, some foreign residents headed to the

seaside on Saturday as Portugal's beach season officially kicked

off.

"The most important thing is they get to the bottom of what

happened," said Danny Townsend, 53, who moved to Praia da Luz

permanently 18 months ago from England but bought his holiday

home in the resort in 2007, the year McCann vanished.

"It's a nice place and it would be great if we could get to

the point it's resolved and people can move on but in the

meantime we have to live with it I guess," added Townsend. 

Reuters

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