Portuguese detectives from Porto are to carry out a review into the case of Madeleine McCann’s disappearance.
Scotland Yard officers have been carrying out their own review since May 2011 after a request from British Home Secretary Theresa May and support from Prime Minister David Cameron.
This investigation will now be assisted by a team of Judicial Police (PJ) headed by senior officer Helena Monteiro and it is believed that the group of detectives has been looking into the case for some weeks.
Madeleine McCann was almost four years old when she vanished from a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007.
The official investigation inquiry into her disappearance ended in 2008.
According to Portuguese daily newspaper Correio da Manhã, PJ officers will not formally reopen their investigation as they have not yet come across any new leads that shed light on Madeleine’s whereabouts.
Gerry and Kate McCann’s spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, said: ‘’Kate and Gerry obviously welcome the work being done by the PJ in Porto alongside that of the Met investigative team. They clearly hope that it will lead to the case being reopened in due course. There is good co-operation between the Met and the PJ, and Kate and Gerry remain grateful for the time and resources that have been put into the search for Madeleine.”
He added: “They will not be discussing any details whilst both the Met investigative review and the PJ work is continuing, but clearly it is a positive development.’’
Rogério Alves, the McCanns’ Portuguese lawyer, told the Daily Mirror: “It’s not certain, but what’s happening at the moment is that some of the information passed to the authorities could lead to a reopening of the case.
“There is something that aroused enough interest from the Portuguese and British police to warrant this review in search of new clues. The most plausible explanation is that information passed to or acquired by the Judicial Police has put them on the trail of something specific.”
Answers are needed
Portuguese crime expert Moita Flores, in his column in Correio da Manhã, commented on the fact that Scotland Yard had made a further £2 million available for the search of Madeleine.
He said: “I think it’s good. When answers are needed for a situation of such tragic dimensions, the authorities should invest whatever is necessary to solve these mysteries.
“We will all find some peace when we know what happened to Madeleine.”
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