Madeleine latest: Met wants to “sweep Luz shop for clues”

As Met detectives wound up their latest round of interrogations in Faro – with a police source affirming the Madeleine investigation was “back to where it was seven years ago” – news broke that a shop in Praia da Luz is poised to be swept for clues.
SIC notícias broke the story this morning. It was quickly seized by British media which announced that the Met was prepared to “battle for a Portuguese court order” so that the shop could be searched by Welsh sniffer dogs.
The shop was apparently visited by a ‘suspect’ seen with a young child on the night Madeleine disappeared from her parents’ holiday apartment on the nearby Ocean Club complex.
So far, no further details of its whereabouts have been given.
According to the Daily Mirror, “Met officers in the Algarve hope the business owner will open his doors to their search dogs, rather than launch a long court battle”.
Locals on the scene are understandably baffled.
“The Met seems to have discounted the reaction of sniffer dogs that sensed death and blood in the apartment during the original investigation – but seven years later they are running about all over the place with these dogs”, said one.
Today’s developments follow renewed interrogation of witnesses and four “arguidos” in Faro this week – all of whom deny any involvement in the long-running mystery, as they did seven years ago.
Also splashed across British media today were the comments in a leader article in Correio da Manhã by former Portuguese minister Rui Pereira – now a university lecturer and occasional leader writer.
Calling his column published on Thursday an “astonishing attack on the UK police”, the Daily Mirror went on to quote Pereira – who complained about the Portuguese authorities being “used and abused” by their British counterparts.
Pereira maintains that Portuguese police have been used as outsource workers, claimed the Mirror, adding that he has blasted the Met’s operation for being “absurd”.
What Pereira did say was that the situation of British police running a parallel investigation in Portugal “shows a large dose of subservience” on the part of Portuguese authorities.
“From chartered Air Force helicopter flights (to unveil graves dug seven years ago) to the return of the famous sniffer dogs and interrogation of “arguidos” and witnesses… Can this all be justified”, he queried. “Of course not”.
Perhaps the Portuguese investigation was reopened here, in order to “facilitate the cooperation of the Portuguese police at the service of the British”, he wondered.
“If that is true, then there was manipulation of the case” – which compromises Portugal’s penal sovereignty”.
Rui Pereira was Minister for Internal Administration between 2009-2011 in the Socialist government under José Sócrates