Madeleine McCann: Investigators say she could have been ‘sold’

Investigators say Madeleine McCann may have been sold to child traffickers

The German lawyer leading the case said he was “certain” that Christian Brueckner “murdered” Madeleine McCann (Pictures: PA)

Prosecutors have admitted Madeleine McCann was “possibly” killed after she was kidnapped and sold to a child trafficking gang.

Hans Christian Wolters, the German lawyer leading the criminal investigation into her disappearance, made the revelation during an interview broadcast on Portuguese television.

Convicted sex offender Christian Brueckner was named a suspect by police in Potugal last month and has been under investigation by officials in Germany for the past two years.

They built a case against him during that time, but Mr Wolters conceded Bruckner would not be charged any time soon – although he said this week his team had found “new evidence”.

The prosecutor told journalist Sandra Felgueiras during the interview that aired on Friday: “We are sure that he is the murderer of Madeleine McCann.”

But his answers to other questions prompted fresh speculation about whether the former drifter might have had an accomplice or the boy was “sold” before he was killed.

When asked if he was sure Brueckner kidnapped and killed Madeleine, Mr Wolters simply replied: “We are sure he killed Madeleine McCann.”

Undated handout file photo of Madeleine McCann, whose parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, have said they welcome the news that Portuguese authorities have declared a German man a formal suspect in her disappearance. It comes a day after convicted sex offender Christian Brueckner, 44, was declared an official suspect by Portuguese authorities. Issue date: Friday April 22, 2022. PA Photo. See PA Story POLICE Portugal. Photo credit should read: PA Wire

Madeleine was three years old when she disappeared while on holiday in Portugal on May 3, 2007 (Image: PA)

rex features ltd claims no copyrights or licenses for the attached image. Mandatory Credit: Photo by REX/Shutterstock (10669866a) Christian Brueckner, 43, a German convicted pedophile who has been named as the man suspected of kidnapping and murdering Madeleine McCann. He is currently serving a prison sentence for raping a 72-year-old American woman at Praia da Luz in Portugal in September 2005, where Madeleine disappeared when she was three years old. Brueckner, who was also convicted of child molestation, is suspected of abducting Madeleine from the family's holiday home in Praia da Luz on the night of May 3, 2007. German police have confirmed that a man serving seven years in Germany's prison who is a convicted child molester is the new prime suspect in Madeleine's kidnapping and possible murder. New suspect in Madeleine McCann case - 04.06.2020

Christian Brueckner has been under investigation by officials in Germany for two years (Image: Rex/Shutterstock)

He went on to admit that he “didn’t know” if Madeleine could have been kidnapped by anyone with no help or inside information on the McCanns’ holiday moves, adding, “All I can say is that we have a suspicious person at the moment, and This is Christian B

“There is no other person for us who is suspicious.”

But he later conceded there was a “possibility” that the youngster had been “sold”.

After first insisting, “I’m not allowed to talk about those details,” he then added, “Maybe it’s a possibility.”

First prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters addresses the media during a press conference on the Madeleine McCann case at the Braunschweig public prosecutor's office on Thursday, June 4, 2020. A German man has been named as a suspect in the case of a 3-year-old British girl who disappeared 13 years ago while on a family holiday in Portugal. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters (Image: AP)

Five years ago, former Scotland Yard officer Colin Sutton suggested that a “kidnapping on command” was the most likely and credible scenario for Madeleine’s disappearance.

Speculation that a child trafficking gang was behind the unsolved crime has never translated into hard evidence.

Madeleine was three years old when she disappeared on May 3, 2007 while on vacation in Portugal.

Brueckner, who was identified as a murder suspect by German prosecutors in June 2020, has reportedly denied any involvement in the case and has not been charged.

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Justin Scacco

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