The baffling case of little Daniel Abreu, who went missing for three days in Madeira, has taken new twists today (January 23) as the 18-month-old baby remains in hospital, and PJ police are apparently suspecting parental involvement in an attempt to sell their child.
“The PJ believe Daniel was kidnapped in order to be sold,” writes Correio da Manhã. The kidnappers would have “had links to the family”, but for various reasons (perhaps related to the fact that ports and airports were on high alert) decided to abandon the child early yesterday morning, not far from the house from which he went missing, reports the newspaper.
It’s a theory that has been greeted with indignation by Daniel’s father, Carlos, who had already spoken out against the general police attitude during the time his son was missing.
The initial search was ‘called off’ less than 24-hours after having begun, and inquiries were focusing on parental involvement before the little boy turned up, apparently safe and well.
Here too, the situation remains confused. When Daniel was found on Wednesday morning, near an irrigation canal, news reports suggested he was in perfect health.
Now, the Hospital de Funchal where he was taken has announced that they will be keeping Daniel another night because tests have shown “muscular suffering”.
“The child will not leave hospital today because tests have shown a degree of muscular suffering which we suspect has to do with his exposure to the cold,” president of the region’s health service Miguel Ferreira told Público newspaper.
In all, Daniel was missing for three nights. Experts are all unanimous: a baby his age, not well-wrapped up against the elements, and incapable of caring for himself, could simply not have survived.
Thus the unanswered questions continue: who was looking after little Daniel for what amounted to almost 70 hours, and why did they take him?
Meantime, Público reports that Madeira’s Calheta town council have stepped in to help the family, who live in ‘precarious’ conditions in the house of relatives as both parents are unemployed.
Daniel’s parents have another child, an elder sister, aged three.
Madeira’s missing baby found alive and well – http://portugalresident.com/madeira%E2%80%99s-missing-baby-found-alive-and-well
Toddler ‘vanishes’ just yards from parents – http://portugalresident.com/toddler-%E2%80%98vanishes%E2%80%99-just-yards-from-parents-0