Maddie anniversary brings shock new revelations
Days before the 7th anniversary of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, British detectives say they now know of at least one other child “abused in her bed while on holiday in the heart of Praia da Luz”.
The news comes just as the village is getting ready for a fun-loving community sports event designed to kick off the season and bolster spirits after countless years in the Maddie shadow.
But no matter how hard people try to move on, ‘revelations’ keep coming – particularly to coincide with the May 3 anniversary.
This latest – announced to newspapers and news services on Wednesday – focuses on the pot-bellied male intruder with noticeable odour that Operation Grange, the Met’s special Maddie task force, revealed it was looking for last month.
Originally, Grange boss Andy Redwood said his team had identified 12 break-ins between 2004 and 2010, four of which had involved the sexual assaults of five white British girls on holiday.
Releasing the information, DCI Redwood appealed to the public for information.
As a result, Operation Grange is reported to have received up to 500 calls. Among these they have learned of six further incidents in the Algarve during the same time frame, says Redwood: five of which involved sexual assaults on young British holidaymakers (all girls) and one of which was a ‘near miss’.
The fact that none of the assaults were made on children of Madeleine’s age – nor were any of the girls removed from their beds never to be seen again – has not dissuaded investigators from the theory that they could all be linked to the little girl’s disappearance in 2007.
“In this new tranche of information we have got one crime which is very clearly in the heart of Praia da Luz in 2005, on a young, white, 10-year-old girl”, Redwood told journalists.
“Clearly the fact that we’ve now got an assault that is in the heart of Praia da Luz, very close to where a previous matter had been reported, means that we are even more interested in this as part of the inquiry.”
According to BBC news: “The case involving the 10-year-old was not reported to police in either country until now.
“Overall, nine of the 18 break-ins involved alleged sexual assaults against British girls aged six to 12.
“Three took place in Praia da Luz, five in Carvoeiro, nine in Albufeira and one in Vilamoura”.
As news services scramble to send the revelations all over the globe, residents in Luz are shaking their heads in disbelief.
“When will this end?” One asked us, visibly crestfallen. “A NEW sexual assault on a child, in Luz? Why have we never heard about it until now? And why are we hearing about it just in time for the 7th anniversary of the disappearance?”
Others were more belligerent. “These latest revelations are simply beyond belief”, a former British policeman who has been actively following investigations told us.
“The totally Flat man – who managed to hide behind the door against the wall when Gerry (Madeleine’s father) entered the room to do his check (just before Madeleine went missing), and Tannerman who was of medium slim build, and Smithman, who was not potbellied, and the Heroin Blackman have all suddenly been dropped in favour of trying to trace potbellied Smellyman – a fat man who can leap in a single bound through a tiny window, and take a sleeping child, whilst sedating two others in a way unknown to modern medical science, and then leap out again and VANISH without leaving his distinctive smell.
“It is all too ridiculous to even try to take on board”…
But “take on board” has been the order of the day for years.
News services simply repeat verbatim news purportedly coming from Scotland Yard, and occasionally even news reported to have come from PJ police in Portugal. And, as the little village of Praia da Luz bravely continues to try and turn the page, it appears likely to remain this way.
The countdown has begun on a triathlon event that will bring together Portuguese and foreigners alike on Saturday.
Meantime, British police, journalists, Madeleine McCann’s parents, and even the former parish priest Haynes Hubbard – who befriended the couple when their little girl went missing – are all understood to be on their way back to Luz to focus attention once again on the world’s most famous missing person.