Police are searching a plot of land in Hannover, in northern Germany, as part of the investigation into Madeleine McCann’s disappearance, German prosecutors told the BBC.
They confirmed that the action is related to the investigation of the main suspect in the case: Christian B, a sexual predator imprisoned in Germany. He is already serving a prison sentence for another crime. It is believed that he was in the same region as Madeleine, in Portugal, the night the girl disappeared in 2007. She was on vacation with her family.
Work began on the site on Monday (27) and is expected to continue until Wednesday (29).
The three-year-old girl disappeared from an apartment in Praia da Luz on the night of May 3, 2007, while her parents were with friends at a nearby bar.
Her disappearance sparked a massive police search operation across much of Europe.
Christian B, 43, was named as the prime suspect in the case in June, when German and British police made a new request for help with information about two vehicles the suspect used, 13 years after Madeleine disappeared.
The police said the suspect was living regularly in the Algarve between 1995 and 2007 and was working in the region, in the food sector, but also committed thefts in hotels and trafficked drugs.
German prosecutors said earlier that they had evidence that leads them to believe that Christian B killed Madeleine – but it would not be strong enough to put him on trial.
In June, the Metropolitan Police said the case was still classified as a “missing person” investigation in the United Kingdom, because there was no “definitive evidence” to indicate whether Madeleine was alive or not.
However, German investigators said they are working with the scenario that Madeleine is dead.
After the latest police appeal, Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, said: “We will never give up hope of finding Madeleine alive, but whatever the outcome of the investigation, we need to know to be at peace.”
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