Pictured: Maddie suspect’s ‘dungeon’ under his house where convicted paedophile told a friend he wanted a basement with soundproof walls ‘like the guy in Austria’
- New pictures show the 10ft deep ‘dungeon’ Madeleine McCann suspect Christian Brueckner dug in his home
- The convicted paedophile stayed at the allotment on the outskirts of Braunschweig while he worked at a kiosk
- The owners of the adjoining gardens last year said the plot where Brueckner used to work should be searched
- Comes after investigators did a two-day search in Hanover and covered the allotment with sand July last year
New images show the entrance to a 10ft deep ‘dungeon’ hidden under the house where Madeleine McCann’s suspected kidnapper Christian Brueckner lived in central Germany.
Police have searched the Braunschweig site – where the convicted paedophile told a friend he wanted a basement with soundproof walls ‘like the guy in Austria’ in reference to Josef Fritzl who help his daughter Elisabeth captive in a cellar for 24 years – after they were tipped off by the current tenant last year.
New images show two small holes leading down underneath the dilapidated building from the house’s wooden floor under slats which appear to have been nailed down and covered.
New resident Sabine Selig, 36, phoned police after learning Brueckner, who lived in the house between 2013 and 2016 while he ran a kiosk in the Braunschweig, 40 miles from Hanover, was the prime suspect in the case.
Selig bought the dilapidated building off Brueckner in 2016, as he went on the run after being convicted of sexually abusing a young girl in Germany, and quickly noticed the 10ft deep basement but did not think it significant.
But when she learned Brueckner was the prime suspect in the Madeleine McCann case, she contacted police and encouraged officers to come and search the plot, saying: ‘I worry that I could be sleeping on top of the body of Madeleine McCann.’
New images show the entrance to a 10ft deep ‘dungeon’ hidden under the house where Madeleine McCann’s suspected kidnapper Christian Brueckner lived in central Germany
Police have searched the Braunschweig site – where the convicted paedophile told a friend he wanted a basement with soundproof walls ‘like the guy in Austria’ in reference to Josef Fritzl who help his daughter Elisabeth captive in a cellar for 24 years – after they were tipped off by the current tenant last year
Christian Brueckner (right) is prime suspect in the kidnap and murder of three-year-old Madeleine (left) in 2007 while she was on holiday in Praia da Luz
Selig described Brueckner as ‘grubby’ and said he was surprisingly keen to hand off the place, even joking about moving to Italy, where he was eventually captured in Milan in 2018.
‘If I had known what kind of guy he was, I never would have moved here’, she told the Mirror. ‘he wanted to give up his little house, his allotment quickly – as quickly as possible. He wanted to run away to Italy.’
Selig paid Brueckner only 800 Euros to take over the garden and that she primarily liked the property because ‘the garden was big, you could make something out of the hut. And I needed the space and Brueckner was under stress’.
The hut was equipped with a wood-fueled stove and kitchen, installed by Brueckner, but still ‘looked like a rubbish dump, not like a flat’ and was filled with ‘creepy’ wooden dolls and fairy-lights more akin to a children’s book than a single man’s home.
New images show two small holes leading down underneath the dilapidated building from the house’s wooden floor under slats which appear to have been nailed down and covered
The hut was equipped with a wood-fueled stove and kitchen, installed by Brueckner, but still ‘looked like a rubbish dump, not like a flat’ and was filled with ‘creepy’ wooden dolls and fairy-lights more akin to a children’s book than a single man’s home
Current resident Sabine Selig paid Brueckner only 800 Euros to take over the garden and that she primarily liked the property because ‘the garden was big, you could make something out of the hut. And I needed the space and Brueckner was under stress’
Selig described Brueckner has ‘nervous’ and ‘short-tempered’. He was always wearing a dirty jacket and always had a beer in his hand.
‘He had a fixed gaze, he stared at you almost motionless. There was something unpleasant and opaque about him. Today I can explain it, it seems to be the Maddie McCann case.’
Owners of the adjoining gardens in Braunschweig said last year believe that the plot where Brueckner used to work in a shed should be probed as part of the Madeleine investigation.
Manfred Richter, 80, said: ‘Brueckner excavated the floor of the house. He took out the rocks and the earth. He dug a big hole. It was 10ft deep and 20ft wide. He carried out the rocks and earth by hand and dumped it out by the front of the house.
‘He put put planks of wood over the top of the hole. It took him two months to complete. He started in the morning and worked until evening. Doing this work got him in trouble with the authorities in charge of the gardens.’
Another neighbour said Brueckner had never done any gardening in Braunschweig but would visit the allotment with his girlfriend and work in his shed, before he left the plot abruptly and was never seen again.
Sellig told local media in June last year that she had called the police following the original appeal for information about Brueckner.
She told the police: ‘Please come and search my house. I have a bad feeling about the place. I bought the plot from Christian Brueckner. There is something wrong about the house.
Neighbour Juergen Krumstroh said: ‘I believe the police will come soon and start digging up the garden to for traces of Madeleine McCann, just like they did in Hanover.
‘I used to see Brueckner sitting in the garden. Sometimes he used to come with his young girlfriend. He did not grow any vegetables or plants. But I know that he built something inside the shed because I could hear him working.
‘Brueckner was a strange man. I was not close to him. Although I would drink a beer with him occasionally. Then one day he gave me a letter saying he wanted to give up the allotment and he left the next day.’
The Braunschweig garden is one of dozens of council-run plots rented out to city dwellers, and a small wooden house now stands at the entrance to the green space.
Garden owners are not supposed to live at the sites permanently but they are allowed to build simple houses and occasionally overnight.
Christian Brueckner lived at this allotment in Braunschweig, 40 miles from the vegetable garden which was searched by police this week – meaning it could be the next target of the Madeleine investigation
The allotment in Braunschweig which neighbours say could be searched by police after Brueckner occupied it between 2013 and 2016 and spent some time living there
Manfred Richter (pictured), a neighbour of Christian Brueckner in Braunschweig, said the Madeleine suspect had dug a 10ft cellar underneath his allotment shed
Owners of the adjoining gardens in Braunschweig believe that the garden where Brueckner used to work in a shed will soon be probed as part of the Madeleine investigation
Christian Brueckner’s former allotment in Germany was covered in a layer of sand after detectives finished their two-day search in the Madeleine McCann investigation yesterday
Items including a blue bucket were loaded into a skip after they were found at the search site where detectives found a hidden cellar underneath a long-demolished building
Police officers were seen carrying large blue bags away from a German allotment where kidnapping suspect Christian Brueckner allegedly lived in 2007
The allotment has now been covered in sand with samples of mud and soil sent away for analysis by German investigators
Police officers fill up a skip during their search of Christian Brueckner’s former allotment near Hanover, which ended in July last year after a two-day investigation
Police finished their operation yesterday and the allotment has now been cleared except for a line of police tape
Slabs of building materials are removed from the allotment garden in Germany which is being dug up by investigators – where Christian Brueckner allegedly lived in the same year that Madeleine McCann vanished
Brueckner is believed to have visited the garden numerous times between 2013 and 2016 when he ran a kiosk in Braunschweig, usually at weekends with his young girlfriend Nakscije Miftari.
She had an 18-month relationship with Brueckner while she was a teenager and it is alleged by her family that he beat up and did ‘horrible things to her’.
The plot is now covered with a lawn, bushes, plants, fruit trees and flowers. Old bikes and tools were propped up against the house today, while a lawn-mower is at the foot of the garden path.
Another neighbour added: ‘This is a strange situation because a woman bought the allotment from Brueckner and she has no idea what he may have done.’
Prosecutors in Braunschweig – who are handling the case because Brueckner’s last known address was there – would not comment on whether the second allotment would be searched like the Hanover one.
The sudden interest in Brueckner’s Braunschweig allotment comes after investigators ended their two-day search of the garden near Hanover.
Samples of mud and soil have been sent away for analysis while a trove of items were loaded into a skip after excavators dug up the plot.
The allotment has now been cleared and covered in a layer of sand, with fencing removed except for a line of police tape, but prosecutors are refusing to reveal what they were looking for or whether they found it.
The search team discovered dozens of items in a secret cellar under a long-demolished shed, including a blue bucket, a plant pot, tarpaulin, a string bag, bags of gravel, corrugated iron, wooden floor boards, iron bars, plastic piping, a laundry bag, plastic covering and a tree trunk.
The potential evidence was loaded into a skip by a German police search team and taken away on a truck last night.
The police cordon as it looked after investigators left the scene, covering the area in sand to stop anyone entering the cellar
One official looked as if she was wiping a tear from her eye as the team of police officers dug up an allotment near Hanover
An excavator on the plot of land near Hanover where Brueckner’s former neighbour says there used to be a shed and cellar
A police officer uses a detection dog while digging at an allotment as police continue to search the area in relation to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann
Police work at the site where a cellar was discovered in the foundations of a building which neighbours say was demolished in 2007 or 2008
A map showing the location of Brueckner’s apartment block in Hanover and of the vegetable garden which is being searched in northern Germany
German police work during a search in an allotment near Hanover. Brueckner’s plot of land was originally owned by someone else before it was passed onto the convicted rapist
A police officer with a sniffer dog arrive to search the allotment. Wolfgang Kossack, 73, who owns the plot next to Brueckner’s former allotment, told MailOnline that Brueckner had lived off-grid at the site in 2007 and talked about planning his return to southern Europe
A police officer stands guard at the site of the search at a garden plot where a basement was discovered near Hanover
German police work next to a skip during a search in the garden allotment near Hanover. Brueckner’s plot of land was originally owned by someone else before it was passed onto the convicted rapist
Mr Kossack, a retired electrician, said he remembered Brueckner took over the plot (pictured) in 2007 because the allotments had only been handed out by the local authorities the year before
Brueckner’s former neighbours say he set up camp at the Hanover allotment in 2007 – the year Madeleine vanished – before the buildings on his plot were demolished in late 2007 or 2008, leaving the hidden basement.
Brueckner – who is currently in jail in northern Germany – is suspected of killing Madeleine after she vanished in May 2007.
Wolfgang Kossack, 73, who owns the plot next to Brueckner’s Hanover allotment, told MailOnline yesterday that Brueckner had lived off-grid at the site in 2007 and talked about planning his return to southern Europe.
Mr Kossack said he only realised the link to Brueckner this week when police started digging up the allotment, saying: ‘I remembered his face from the pictures in the news. And I remember his van and his dogs. I had completely forgotten about him up until then.’
Asked by Bild about Brueckner’s connection to the allotment, the suspect’s lawyer Friedrich Fuelscher said he could not comment on the police operation.
Pressed on why the allotment was being searched, Fuelscher told the newspaper that ‘I think we’ll find out the reason soon’.
The allotment is only a short drive away from an apartment block where Brueckner is known to have stayed while living in Hanover, and the ‘Havana Club’ bar which he is thought to have frequented is also nearby.
Later, Brueckner lived in Braunschweig where he owned the second allotment from 2013 to 2016 after taking on a plot which the previous owner had left in disrepair.
Last month a former friend of Brueckner reportedly claimed the kidnap suspect told him he had a cellar at a different property which he wanted to line with metal sheets ‘like Josef Fritzl’s’.
Madeleine’s kidnapper would have had little difficulty driving her 1,700 miles from Portugal to Germany because of the continent’s open borders.
If Brueckner kidnapped Madeleine, he would have had to drive through Portugal, Spain, France and possibly the Benelux countries to reach Germany – all of which been members of the Schengen open-borders agreement since it was created in 1995.
Other German borders were opened later in 2007, including those with the Czech Republic and Poland.
The 2019 Netflix documentary The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann showed footage of cars crossing the border into Spain just hours after Madeleine vanished – driving right past a police patrol which was meant to be checking them.
Even a van with blacked-out windows was allowed to cross the border and leave Portugal without having its contents inspected.
Ernie Allen, the former president of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, said in the documentary that Portuguese police had been ‘slow’ to impose checks.
Speaking to MailOnline, neigbour Mr Kossack said: ‘Christian Brueckner had the garden next to mine. He arrived in 2007 and left within a year. He told me that he was living off the grid, that he had not registered with the authorities – no one knew he was there.
‘He never did any gardening. He did not plant anything or try to grow anything. He just sat around drinking beer.
‘At the time there was a building on the garden. It was a small wooden structure with only one room to keep tools and other things but it had a kitchen.
‘The building was not really a house, you might call it a shed. But it had a cellar and underneath there would be foundations. This building was destroyed in 2008.’
Mr Kossack, a retired electrician, said he remembered Brueckner took it over in 2007 because the allotments had only been handed out by the local authorities the year before.
Brueckner’s plot of land was originally owned by someone else before it was passed onto the convicted rapist.
Mr Kossack, who has tended his own parcel of land since 2006, said Brueckner disappeared in 2008 and he never saw him again.
‘Sometimes a young woman would be there with him,’ he said. ‘She seemed to be his girlfriend. ‘He had two dogs – a big one and a small one – who were quite annoying. They would come into my garden to do their business.
‘I remember he called the small dog, Frau Muller [a German nickname for a housewife].’
Before Brueckner left, he talked about his time outside of Germany. ‘Brueckner said he preferred southern Europe because he liked the warm weather and said he would go back there,’ his neighbour said.
‘He did not say which country. He had a VW Transporter van and parked it next to the allotment and lived in the vehicle.
‘The van was registered in Hanover but Brueckner had not paid the tax on the vehicle.
‘I asked Bruecker what he did for a job. He said he was a car mechanic. I asked him why he didn’t repair his own van because it was always leaking diesel onto the ground. He said he would get around to it sometime.’
He added: ‘I feel so sorry for the parents of Madeleine McCann. I hope they can find out what happened to their daughter.’
The Euro Hobbywerkstatt car mechanics workshop where Christian Brueckner rented a space. Brueckner rented a space at the mechanics workshop in Hanover where he worked on numerous different cars and vans
Police began a second day of searching an allotment garden near Hanover as part of their Madeleine McCann investigation, close to where suspect Christian Brueckner allegedly once lived
The Hobbywerkstatt mechanics workshop in the Hanover-Linden district of the city is one a dozen independent car garages in the area. The garage is a short drive from the flat where Brueckner lived from 2010 after returning from Portugal
A piece of specialist equipment carried by German police who discovered a hidden cellar in the allotment garden
Up to 100 officers using small diggers and sniffer dogs were continuing to excavate the vegetable garden outside Hanover, where Brueckner lived after the three-year-old vanished in 2007
A digger was at work during the search, which was largely obscured from the eyes of the public by fences and trees
Specialist search dogs that look for dead bodies and computer equipment are being used as part of the huge investigation that is currently scouring the vegetable garden for a second day
Investigators arrive with their equipment with a police van behind them as the search continues at an allotment linked to Madeleine kidnapping suspect Christian Brueckner in Germany
Brueckner’s last known address in Hanover was at this apartment block, around three miles from the allotment which is being searched by German police
British police questioned garage owner about Madeleine
British detectives searching for Madeleine McCann questioned a garage owner in Germany and took away documents and materials relating to prime suspect Christian Brueckner, MailOnline can reveal.
Brueckner rented a space at the Euro Hobbywerkstatt car mechanics workshop in Hanover where he worked on numerous different cars and vans.
The owner of the garage has told how Brueckner would spend hours repairing vehicles but revealed nothing of his criminal past.
He told MailOnline: ‘I know Christian Brueckner because he rented a space at the workshop. He did not work for me.
‘British police and the German police have come here to talk to me and I told them everything I know about him.
‘The detectives took away everything to do with him.
‘A lot of people have been asking me questions about this. But the police must be able to able to do their work.
‘I am very sad for the family of Madeleine McCann. I feel very sorry for her parents.’
The mechanics workshop in the Hanover-Linden district of the city is one a dozen independent car garages in the area.
The garage is a short drive from the flat where Brueckner lived from 2010 after returning from Portugal.
Up to 100 officers using small diggers and sniffer dogs were involved in excavating the vegetable garden outside Hanover, where Brueckner lived after the three-year-old vanished in 2007.
A man on a neighbouring plot told German media that the garden had not been used for at least the past two years.
The sky above the plot was declared a no-fly zone, according to the local Hannoversche Allgemeine newspaper.
A tent was erected on the plot concealing the exact nature of the search, and a wide cordon with wire netting was been up around the allotment.
Two small tents were set up in a field opposite the main dig site, while a fleet of German police vehicles lined the side of the small country road while commuter traffic drove past.
The search was being carried out by officials from the prosecutors’ office in Braunschweig, where Brueckner was convicted of rape in 2019, and the German federal police.
German authorities have released few details about the allotment search, beyond confirming that it was part of the Madeleine investigation.
The investigators left on Wednesday evening, a spokeswoman for the Braunschweig prosecutor’s office said, but she did not give any further details on the specific motive for the search or whether police found anything related to their investigation.
Brueckner is currently in prison in Kiel for drug offences and had launched legal proceedings for an early release after serving two-thirds of his sentence.
The two-thirds benchmark passed on June 7, leading to fears he could be released and subsequently disappear before the Maddie case was resolved.
However, he has now dropped his bid, though he is still appealing against a conviction for the 2005 rape of a 72-year-old woman in Praia da Luz where Madeleine vanished in 2007.
The drugs conviction is due to keep him behind bars until shortly before the end of January next year and, after that, a seven year jail term for the rape will kick in unless he wins his appeal.
Brueckner is thought to have worked in a car repair shop while living in Hanover, and his last known address in Germany was 40 miles away in Braunschweig.
German media says he received at least two criminal convictions from a Hanover court, one for forging documents in 2010 and another for theft in 2013.
He split his time between Germany and Portugal from 2013 to 2015, prosecutors in Hanover have said.
At the end of 2012, he reportedly opened a small shop in Braunschweig with his then girlfriend. After they split up, he continued to run the shop alone until he gave it up 18 months later, along with the adjacent apartment.
An excavator at the allotment where police are searching for a second day but have not revealed what they are expecting to find
A police car stands in a grain field near the garden allotment in northern Germany which is by the side of a canal
Journalists report from outside the allotment which police have been searching for two days in the latest twist to the long-running Madeleine McCann case
Police put up a screen at the allotment near Hanover which is the site of a major search by German authorities
A tent was set up at the search site, where police are said to have uncovered a cellar underneath a long-demolished gazebo
A man operates a digger behind fencing at the allotment in northern Germany, close to where the suspect once lived
Detectives have been bagging up pieces of evidence and yesterday discovered a cellar underneath a long-demolished gazebo as they scour for clues that could link Brueckner to Madeleine’s disappearance
A German police officer stands chest-deep in a hole while a sniffer dog watches on at an allotment near Hanover where authorities are digging up a garden in their search for Madeleine McCann
1976: Christian Brueckner is born in Würzburg under a different name. He was adopted by the Brueckner family and took their surname.
1992: Brueckner is arrested on suspicion of burglary in his hometown of Wurzburg, Bavaria.
1994: He is given a two-year youth jail sentence for ‘abusing a child’ and ‘performing sex acts in front of a child’.
1995: Brueckner arrives in Portugal as an 18-year-old backpacker and begins working in catering in the seaside resorts of Lagos and Praia da Luz. But friends say he became involved with a criminal syndicate trafficking drugs into the Algarve.
September 2005: He dons a mask and breaks into an apartment where he rapes a 72-year-old American tourist.
The victim was bound, gagged, blindfolded and whipped with a metal cane before being raped for 15 minutes. She said afterwards that he had clearly enjoyed ‘torturing’ her before the rape.
April 2007: He moves out of a farmhouse and into a campervan now linked to the crime. The farmhouse is cleaned and a bag of wigs and ‘exotic clothes’ is found.
May 3, 2007: Madeleine McCann is snatched at around 10pm from her bed as her parents eat tapas with friends yards away. Brueckner’s mobile phone places him in the area that night. He returns to his native Germany shortly after that.
October 2011: He is sentenced to 21 months for ‘dealing narcotics’ in Niebüll, in northern Germany.
2014: He moves to Braunschweig where he starts running a town-centre kiosk. He then goes back to Portugal with a girlfriend.
2016: He is back in Germany. He is given 15 months in prison for ‘sexual abuse of a child in the act of creating and possessing child pornographic material’.
May 3, 2017: Brueckner is said to be in a bar with a friend when a ten-year anniversary appeal following Madeleine’s disappearance is shown on German television. He is said to have told him in a bar that he ‘knew all about’ what happened to her. The friend apparently went to police.
June 2017: He heads back to Portugal and is extradited again to Germany to face 15 months’ imprisonment for the sexual abuse of a child.
August 2018: After his release from prison he lives on the streets. But he was jailed again for drug offences.
September 2018: Brueckner is arrested in Milan and extradited to Germany and to face trial for raping the American tourist after a DNA match to hair found at the scene.
July 2019: He is jailed for 21 months for drug dealing in the northern German resort of Sylt.
August 2019: Brueckner is charged with the rape of the American tourist in Praia da Luz in 2005.
December 2019: He is convicted of rape raping the tourist based on DNA evidence. He is given a seven year sentence, but has not yet started it because of an ongoing appeal.
June 4, 2020: Brueckner is named by German media as the prime suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance.
Brueckner, a career criminal, was identified as the new lead suspect in June after German police released a trove of new evidence including details of his cars and phone numbers, urging people to come forward with new tip-offs.
Investigators in Germany said at the time that Madeleine was assumed to be dead, going further than British police who are still treating the toddler’s disappearance as a missing-person case.
In June last year, Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, denied receiving a letter from German investigators stating that ‘there is evidence or proof’ Madeleine is dead.
German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters, who is leading the German investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance, said that a letter had been written to the couple, but would not reveal what it said.
Mr Wolters said prosecutors have ‘concrete evidence’, but not ‘forensic evidence’ that Madeleine was killed by the suspect and may ‘know more’ than Scotland Yard, who are still treating the case as a missing person investigation.
The Metropolitan Police maintain their active investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance, Operation Grange, is a missing person inquiry as there is no ‘definitive evidence whether Madeleine is alive or dead’.
In the days after the renewed appeal, Scotland Yard said they received hundreds of tips to their Operation Grange team.
Portuguese authorities are also continuing their investigation and earlier this month searched a series of wells in the Algarve region.
Police and divers in the Algarve region examined a series disused wells in Vila do Bispo, around 10 miles from Praia da Luz.
Multiple investigators were at the scene with specialist diving equipment to examine the wells, with the largest thought to be more than 40ft deep.
Brueckner is known to have lived on the Algarve coast and his Portuguese mobile phone received a half-hour phone call in Praia da Luz around an hour before Madeleine went missing 13 years ago – a key piece of evidence in the German investigation.
Police hope to track down the person who placed the call, regarding them as a crucial witness to Brueckner’s movements on the night of Madeleine’s disappearance.
Brueckner made a living doing odd jobs in the area where Madeleine disappeared, and was also known to have burgled hotel rooms and holiday flats.
He has not yet spoken to investigators, who say they are convinced that he has committed other sex attacks.
Madeleine went missing from her family’s holiday apartment in the Portuguese holiday resort of Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007, a few days before her fourth birthday, as her parents dined with friends at a nearby tapas bar.
Despite a huge international manhunt, no trace of her has been found, nor has anyone been charged over her disappearance.
In September 2007, Gerry and Kate McCann were questioned by police as formal suspects. The following July, the Portuguese police dropped their investigation because of a lack of evidence and cleared the McCanns of any involvement.
The UK government has continued to fund Scotland Yard’s investigation despite increasing doubts over whether the case would ever be solved.
The McCanns’ lawyer Rogerio Alves said police have only 22 more months to nail down the case because of a 15-year statute of limitations in Portugal.
Speaking on McCann: The Hunt for the Prime Suspect on ITV, Alves said: ‘We have a 15 years time barrier, even to manslaughter, to homicide, to certain sexual offences — and even to the most serious kind of kidnapping.
‘So we are still on time. But time is getting short now.’
Kate and Gerry McCann (pictured together) discovered their daughter Madeleine missing in Praia da Luz in May 2007
Brueckner’s name has also been mentioned in connection with other missing children, some of whom vanished in similar circumstances to Madeleine.
In one case, five-year-old Inga Gehricke vanished from a forest in Saxony-Anhalt in 2015 and prosecutors confirmed they were probing possible connections to the McCann case, while saying that Brueckner was not currently a suspect.
He reportedly had a property in the town of Neuwegersleben, around 60 miles south-west of Stendal when Inga went missing.
Separately, the family of German six-year-old René Hasse, who went missing in the Algarve in 1996, revealed that police are re-investigating the case for the first time in 20 years.
Dutch police have also prepared a dossier for German police to look for a possible link to the disappearance of seven-year-old Jair Soares in 2005.
Jair went missing when he went to buy chips near the town of Monster in the South Holland province of the country on August 4, 1995.
A spokesman for police in The Hague confirmed that after announcing their intention to exchange information they have now presented the case and ‘were in talks’.
He said: ‘Presenting the case means that we look if there are any similarities between the cases. So we look for clues that connect them.’
How the disappearance of three-year-old Madeleine McCann unfolded over 13 years
May 3: Gerry and Kate McCann leave their three children, including Maddie, asleep in their hotel apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, as they eat with friends in a nearby restaurant. When they return, they find Maddie missing from her bed
May 4: A friend of the McCanns reports of seeing a man carrying a child away in the night. Meanwhile, airports and borders are put on high alert as search gets underway
May 14: Robert Murat, a property developer who lives a few yards from the hotel, is made a suspect by Portuguese police
May 30: The McCanns meet the Pope in Rome in a bid to bring worldwide attention to the search
August 11: Police in Portugal acknowledge for the first time in the investigation that Maddie might be dead.
September 7: Spanish police make the McCanns official suspects in the disappearance. Two days later the family flies back to England
July 21: Spanish police remove the McCanns and Mr Mural as official suspects as the case is shelved
May 1: A computer-generated image of what Maddie could look like two years after she disappeared is released by the McCanns
May 12: A review into the disappearance is launched by Scotland Yard, following a plea from then-Home Secretary Theresa May
April 25: After a year of reviewing the case, Scotland Yard announce they belief that Maddie could be alive and call on police in Portugal to reopen the case, but it falls on deaf ears amid ‘a lack of new evidence’
Kate and Gerry McCann mark the fourth anniversary of the disappearance of their daughter Madeleine with the publication of the book written by her mother in 2011
July 4: Scotland Yard opens new investigation and claim to have identified 38 ‘people of interest’
October 24: A review into the investigation is opened by Portuguese police and new lines of inquiry are discovered, forcing them to reopen the case
January 29: British officers arrive in Portugal as a detailed investigation takes place. During the year, several locations are searched, including an area of scrubland near the resort
October 28: British police announce that team investigating Maddie’s disappearance is reduced from 29 officers to just four, as it is also revealed that the investigation has cost £10million
April 3: Operation Grange is handed an additional £95,000 by Theresa May to keep the investigation alive for another six months
March 11: Cash is once again pumped into keeping the investigation alive, with £85,000 granted to keep it running until September, when it is extended once again until April next year
March 27: The Home Office reveals it has allocated further funds to Operation Grange. The new fund is believed to be as large as £150,000
September 11: Parents fear as police hunt into daughter’s disappearance could be shelved within three weeks by the new Home Secretary amid funding cuts
September 26: Fresh hope in the search for Madeleine McCann as it emerges the Home Office is considering allocating more cash for the police to find her
April: Controversial new Netflix documentary re-examining Maddie’s kidnap is released, triggering a barrage of online abuse against Kate and Gerry by heartless trolls. They pair, who refused to take part in the eight hour programme series, slammed it for ‘potentially hindering’ the search for their daughter while an active police hunt is ongoing
June 5: The Home Office gives the Metropolitan Police enough funding to investigate for another year
June 22: Detectives say they are ‘closer than ever’ to solving the disappearance as they look into a new suspect. A joint effort by British and Portuguese police narrowed in on a ‘foreign’ man who was in the Algarve when she went missing in 2007
December 7: Paulo Pereira Cristovao, a long-time critic of Maddie’s parents who angered them with a controversial book about the mystery disappearance, was convicted of participating in the planning of two violent break-ins at properties in Lisbon and the nearby resort of Cascais. He is jailed for seven and a half years
December 11: Maddie’s parents revealed a touching list of what they miss most about their daughter as they spent their 13th Christmas without her
February 22: Scotland Yard detectives questioned a British expat about her German ex-boyfriend. Carol Hickman, 59, claims police entered her bar in Praia da Luz, Portugal to ask questions about her former partner
March 27: Detectives requested extra money to continue their investigation into the disappearance of the toddler in Portugal back in 2007, with funds for the operation set to run out at the end of the month
June 3: Police reveal that a 43-year-old German prisoner has been identified as a suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance.
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