TW: Mentions of sexual abuse
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Madeleine McCann went missing in 2007 when she was on holiday in Portugal with her parents and two younger twin siblings. She disappeared on 3 May while her parents were at a nearby restaurant; they took turns to come and check on the kids, and at one stage Maddie was no longer anywhere to be found. Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry, launched a massive search for the toddler - who had a distinctive condition that made her recognisable - but neither the girl nor her body have ever been found.
Although Maddie’s parents were long considered suspects, Portuguese police recently apologised to the couple for their approach to the case. They acknowledged that their original claim - that someone had been ‘watching’ the family before choosing the time to attack - was probably correct. Christian Brückner was made a main suspect by prosecutors in Portugal 2022. New details have emerged about the convicted criminal, who is due in court on 16 February following five accusations of unrelated sexual assault offences.
Christian B’s pal said he confessed
Brückner has never been charged with Madeleine’s disappearance, and has always denied any involvement in the affair. However, an alleged former friend of the suspect has said that he admitted to swiping the child. Helge B met Brückner around the same time that the toddler went missing, and thought he was a ‘nice guy’.
He says he later found video evidence of Brückner performing various sexually abusive acts, including the r*pe of a woman in her 70s. Helge claims the pair went to a festival together and Brückner confessed after a few drinks that he had taken Maddie, bragging that ‘she didn’t even scream’.
New details about Christian B
Brückner, a German national, was officially named as a suspect in Maddie’s case in April 2022, after his campervan was reportedly seen near the Praia da Luz resort where the McCanns were staying when the child went missing. Police searched a location near Silves, which is located around 30 miles from the resort, that the criminal reportedly called his ‘little paradise’ in May 2003. Brückner denies he was in the area when Maddie went missing, but phone records show he received a 30-minute call on May 3 2007 near the Ocean Club of Praia da Luz.
Now, photos have emerged of the criminal, taken just weeks after Maddie vanished. They show Christian B celebrating his birthday with booze and pizza at his rented kiosk in Braunschweig, Germany. This was his last registered address, and sources say he regularly hosted parties there, with one guest stating he was the ‘life and soul’ of the party:
He would get everyone drunk with free booze and we would end up partying until two or 3am. His birthday was the same. It ended up being a really long night.
During the day, the source said ‘lots of young children’ would come to the kiosk for sweets - and Brückner would give them extra treats.
One of the photos showed Christian B hugging his dog on the floor, which is thought to be the same pet that was found buried in 2016 by police. Alongside it’s body, they found memory sticks containing child abuse videos.
DailyMail: Pictured: Madeleine McCann suspect Christian Brueckner partying with friends at his booze-fuelled birthday bash just weeks after he was first quizzed about the missing toddler
BBC News: McCann suspect to stay silent in unrelated German rape trial