Scotland Yard hunt six British cleaners driving a white van in search for missing Maddie
British cleaners and Portuguese manual workers are among new suspects
Many suspects worked at the complex where the three-year-old was staying
Scotland Yard have conducted a review of the Portuguese inquiry
Sources said ‘low-level’ workers have become the focus of interest.
By Ian Gallagher And Russell Myers
British cleaners and Portuguese
manual workers are among new suspects in the Madeleine McCann
investigation, The Mail on Sunday has learned.
Yard identified what they describe as ‘people of interest’ during a
review of the Portuguese inquiry into the three-year-old’s disappearance
in May, 2007.
are thought to number 12 – not 20 as has been reported – and include a
number of British cleaners who were working near the apartment complex
where Madeleine, twin siblings Sean and Amelie and parents Gerry and
Kate were staying.
Scotland Yard identified what they say are 'people of interest' in the kidnap of Madeleine McCann
Sources said ‘low-level’
workers – handymen, cleaners and gardeners – have become the focus of
interest. Some are thought to have been employed by the Ocean Club
complex on a casual basis and may have already been interviewed.
Police are said to be keen to trace
six British cleaners who were working in Praia da Luz when Madeleine
vanished and who didn’t appear in the Portuguese files.
are said to have used a white van and went from apartment to apartment
offering their services, chiefly concentrating on expats.
Gerry McCann and Kate McCann take their twins Sean and Amelie to the creche at the Ocean Club Resort in 2007
The Ocean Club in Praia da Luz where Maddie was disappeared. Portuguese police refuse to reopen the case
A source said: ‘There is quite a
culture of people drifting from door to door offering services from
everything from your garden to your roof or windows.’
well as the manual workers there are a number of more obvious suspects
who already appear in the Portuguese files but who British police feel
haven’t been ‘bottomed out’ properly and therefore warrant further
‘There are a
lot of people who could be explored further, if only to be eliminated,’
said Detective Chief Superintendent Hamish Campbell, head of Scotland
Yard’s Homicide and Serious Crime Command.
officers face having to break down Portuguese resistance to re-opening
the inquiry. Officials in Lisbon say they can reopen the case only if
there is new evidence. But it has been claimed that the new leads could,
if properly explored, result in new evidence and possibly solve the
Madeleine disappeared in 2007 when she was on holiday with her parents and brother and sister in Portugal
Kate and Gerry McCann have never given up hunting for their daughter
Detectives examining the
Portuguese files were alarmed that the original inquiry had not traced
and interviewed all the staff and holidaymakers who were at the Ocean
Club when Madeleine went missing.
year the Met said that it had identified 195 fresh leads that should
have been investigated either by conducting further witness interviews,
eliminating suspects or carrying out forensic tests that were missing
from the 2007 inquiry.
found unexplained gaps in the investigation timeline and that there had
been a complete lack of forensic examination of mobile phone activity
in the area on the night Madeleine disappeared.
Madeleine in an Everton football shirt before
she disappeared. British officers face difficulty in breaking down
resistance in Portugal to reopening the case