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CHRISTIAN B has been named an official suspect in the Madeleine McCann case – but he is refusing to co-operate with authorities.

Christian B, 43, was told he is now an ‘arguido’ in Portugal in his German prison cell on Thursday morning according to an insider.

The 44-year-old was handed a document informing him he was being made an arguido over the British youngster’s May 3 2007 disappearance from her Algarve holiday apartment.

He was then quizzed with a barrage of questions after Portuguese prosecutors made him a formal suspect in the unsolved crime

The convicted rapist was asked: “Where were you the night Madeleine McCann disappeared?”

He was asked to account for his whereabouts the night Madeleine vanished as her parents ate tapas nearby with friends, Portuguese sources said.

German authorities acting on behalf of Portuguese prosecutors also asked him: “If you weren’t by the apartment she disappeared from that night, where were you?”

Sources close to the case in Portugal also revealed the suspect answered none of the questions put to him during his jail interrogation, retaining the right to silence afforded him by his new ‘arguido’ status.

It is the first time he has faced a formal quiz over Madeleine McCann’s disappearance.

It comes after it was revealed the convicted rapist travelled between Praia da Luz and Germany in a camper van for several years before Madeleine vanished.

It is now understood that investigators are focusing their forensic work on the vehicle.

Read our Madeleine McCann blog below for the latest news and updates

  • Suspect could be flown to Algrave for formal questioning

    The Portuguese move paves the way for him to be flown from Germany to the Algarve for formal questioning but there are not thought to be any immediate plans to try to quiz him in Portugal.

    A spokesman for Portugal’s Attorney General’s Office, asked about the future of the probe led by a prosecutor based in the Algarve resort of Portimao, said: “The investigation is proceeding, with the inquiry not having a final conclusion yet.”

  • Official statement from the DIAP

    A written statement issued by the Portimao section of the Faro Department of Criminal Investigation and Prosecution (DIAP) said: “As part of the investigation into the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007, a person was made an arguido on Wednesday.

    “The person was made an arguido by the German authorities in execution of a request for international judicial cooperation issued by the Public Ministry of Portugal.

    “The investigation is led by the Portimao section of the DIAP in Faro with the assistance of the Policia Judiciaria police.

    “The investigation has been carried out with the cooperation of the English and German authorities.”

  • Forensic work on Christian B’s van

    It has been revealed that the convicted child rapist travelled between Praia da Luz and Germany in a camper van for several years before Madeleine vanished.

    It is now understood that investigators are focusing their forensic work on the vehicle.

  • Official statement from the DIAP

    A written statement issued by the Portimao section of the Faro Department of Criminal Investigation and Prosecution (DIAP) said: “As part of the investigation into the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007, a person was made an arguido on Wednesday.

    “The person was made an arguido by the German authorities in execution of a request for international judicial cooperation issued by the Public Ministry of Portugal.

    “The investigation is led by the Portimao section of the DIAP in Faro with the assistance of the Policia Judiciaria police.

    “The investigation has been carried out with the cooperation of the English and German authorities.”

  • How was the suspect identified?

    The prime suspect was already known to British and Portuguese police in relation to Madeleine’s disappearance in Praia da Luz.

    Yet, the information came from a witness who stepped forward following the appeal by the Met Police on the tenth anniversary in 2017.

    The suspect – who is 45 now – is believed to have been leading a “transient lifestyle” at the time, as he travelled between Portugal and Germany.

    It is believed he was living in the Iberian nation between 1995 and 2007 working in the food industry.

    The man is known to have been in the area at the time of Madeleine’s disappearance, having taken a 30-minute phone call an hour before she went missing.

  • Why is Christian B in prison in Germany?

    As of April 2022, Christian B is serving a prison sentence after being convicted of raping a 72-year old woman in 2005.

    The act happened in the same place where Madeleine went missing.

    The suspect is believed to have a total of 17 convictions, including burglary – with German Federal Crime Agency (BKA) director Christian Hoppe claiming he is known for stealing from hotels and holiday apartments.

    German police – who are treating the case as a murder inquiry – believe he initially planned to rob the holiday apartment before he “moved on to a sexual motive”.

    Scotland Yard also revealed that a 1980s VW T3 Westphalia white campervan has been linked to the suspect, and was seen in Praia da Luz days before she vanished.

  • ‘Reflects progress’

    Portugal has a 15-year hearing limit on murder charges – meaning that police would have a reduced risk of convicting a suspect after next month.

    The news comes after Portuguese police said they would continue to investigate Maddie’s disappearance as the Met Police ended its probe.

    Parents Gerry and Kate McCann left their three kids, including toddler twins Sean and Amelie, sleeping in their apartment while they dined at a tapas bar 120 metres away.

    When Kate returned to check on the kids at about 10pm that evening, she found Madeleine was not in her bed and was missing.

    In September of that year, Gerry and Kate, both doctors, were sensationally named as “arguidos” or “suspects” by Portuguese police.

    The following summer the McCanns were cleared by investigators in Portugal who declared they had exhausted all avenues in the case.

  • Madeleine’s parents Gerry & Kate release statement

    Welcoming the latest developments, Kate and Gerry McCann said they still hope to see Madeleine again – even though the “possibility may be slim“.

    Christian B, 44, was told earlier this week in his German prison cell that he is now an ‘arguido’ in Portugal.

    A full statement from Madeleine’s parents – signed “Kate & Gerry” – reads: “We welcome the news that the Portuguese authorities have declared a German man an ‘arguido’ in relation to the disappearance of our beloved daughter Madeleine.

    “This reflects progress in the investigation, being conducted by the Portuguese, German and British authorities. We are kept informed of developments by the Metropolitan Police.

    “It is important to note the ‘arguido’ has not yet been charged with any specific crime related to Madeleine’s disappearance.

    “Even though the possibility may be slim, we have not given up hope that Madeleine is still alive and we will be reunited with her.”

  • ‘Breakthrough could mean everything – or nothing’

    Jim Gamble, the former head of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (Ceop) who worked on the investigation into the child’s disappearance, told BBC Breakfast: “Well, this breakthrough could mean everything or it could mean nothing.

    “My own gut feeling on it – from the moment the Germans began to release information two years ago – was that this was the best fit.

    “You have proximity, you have opportunity, and you have a profile with regards to an offender that absolutely fits in a way that no others have.”

    He added: “This is all positive. And from my own position, and I wouldn’t be surprised if charges did follow.”

  • What is ‘arguido’ status in Portuguese law?

    In Portuguese law, an arguido status can be a preliminary move ahead of an arrest being made or charges brought.

    The Metropolitan Police continue to treat Madeleine’s disappearance as a missing persons inquiry.

  • Suspect could be flown to Algrave for formal questioning

    The Portuguese move paves the way for him to be flown from Germany to the Algarve for formal questioning but there are not thought to be any immediate plans to try to quiz him in Portugal.

    A spokesman for Portugal’s Attorney General’s Office, asked about the future of the probe led by a prosecutor based in the Algarve resort of Portimao, said: “The investigation is proceeding, with the inquiry not having a final conclusion yet.”

  • Official statement from the DIAP

    A written statement issued by the Portimao section of the Faro Department of Criminal Investigation and Prosecution (DIAP) said: “As part of the investigation into the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007, a person was made an arguido on Wednesday.

    “The person was made an arguido by the German authorities in execution of a request for international judicial cooperation issued by the Public Ministry of Portugal.

    “The investigation is led by the Portimao section of the DIAP in Faro with the assistance of the Policia Judiciaria police.

    “The investigation has been carried out with the cooperation of the English and German authorities.”

  • Forensic work on Christian B’s van

    It has been revealed that the convicted child rapist travelled between Praia da Luz and Germany in a camper van for several years before Madeleine vanished.

    It is now understood that investigators are focusing their forensic work on the vehicle.

  • What is an ‘arguido’?

    Christian B was told yesterday he was now an ‘arguido’ in Portugal in his German prison cell according to an insider.

    An “arguido” – normally translated as “named suspect” or “formal suspect” – is someone who is treated by Portuguese police as more than a witness but has not been arrested or charged.

    Detectives invoke arguido status on someone as a preliminary to an arrest being made or charges brought, but that does not mean arrests or charges automatically follow.

  • Christian B confirmed as official suspect

    PORTUGUESE detectives last night confirmed convicted child rapist Christian B as an official suspect in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

    The Portuguese prosecutor’s office confirmed “a defendant was appointed this Wednesday”.

    Christian B, 43, was told he is now an ‘arguido’ in Portugal in his German prison cell yesterday morning according to an insider.

    An “arguido” – normally translated as “named suspect” or “formal suspect” – is someone who is treated by Portuguese police as more than a witness but has not been arrested or charged.

    A Portuguese source added: “The legal grounds for making [Christian B] an arguido include the fact that he allegedly confessed to a friend he had snatched Madeleine and mobile phone records placed him in Praia da Luz the night she vanished.

  • Key pieces of evidence linking Christian B to Madeleine’s disappearance

    GERMAN prosecutors believe convicted paedophile Christian B snatched Madeleine McCann as he was named an official suspect in Portugal.

    Following a lengthy investigation by authorities in Portugal, Germany and the UK, there is now potentially crucial evidence that could solve the world’s most famous missing child mystery.

    As they search for the missing piece of the jigsaw, prosecutors are faced with a series of potential clues that link the German with the tot’s disappearance.

    1. Bombshell ‘alibi’
    2. ‘Russians in the frame’
    3. ‘Shocking new evidence’
    4. Madeleine ‘still alive’
    5. A five-year probe on the current suspect
    6. Christian B’s secret cellar and sinister factory
    7. Suspect Christian B facing other charges

    Read the article in full here.

  • Explained: Are Kate and Gerry still together?

    Shortly after Madeleine vanished, Kate said their marriage nearly broke down as she withdrew into herself.

    She stopped reading, playing music or even having sex with her husband Gerry.

    And the couple were gripped by the fear that a paedophile may have taken their daughter.

    Writing about that period in her autobiography, Kate said: “Tortured as I was by these images, it’s not surprising that even the thought of sex repulsed me.

    “I worried about Gerry and me. I worried that if I didn’t get our sex life on track our whole relationship would break down.”

    Kate went on to credit Gerry’s understanding and the couple’s resilience for the endurance of their marriage.

    They remain together to this day, despite the stresses of intense media scrutiny on their lives.

  • Who are Maddie’s parents, Kate and Gerry McCann?

    Madeleine’s parents Kate and Gerry are both practising Catholics who met in Glasgow in 1993.

    Kate became a GP after studying medicine at the University of Dundee while Gerry has been a consultant cardiologist since 2005.

    The couple got married in 1998 before having their first child, Madeleine, in 2003.

    They also have twin children, a boy and a girl, who were born in 2005 and live in Rothley, Leicestershire.

    Kate and Gerry had been married for nine years when Madeleine disappeared on the night of May 3, 2007.

    Kate and Gerry McCann being interviewed 10 years after their daughter Madeleine McCann went missingCredit: Press Association
    Kate and Gerry McCann being interviewed 10 years after their daughter Madeleine McCann went missingCredit: Press Association
  • Madeleine’s parents were once ‘arguidos’

    Parents Gerry and Kate McCann left their three kids, including toddler twins Sean and Amelie, sleeping in their apartment while they dined at a tapas bar 120 metres away.

    When Kate returned to check on the kids at about 10pm that evening, she found Madeleine was not in her bed and was missing.

    In September 2007, Gerry and Kate, both doctors, were sensationally named as “arguidos” or “suspects” by Portuguese police.

    The following summer (2008) the McCanns were cleared by investigators in Portugal who declared they had exhausted all avenues in the case.

  • 15 years since Madeleine disappeared 

    Maddie vanished in 2007 while on holiday with her family in Praia da Luz, Portugal – triggering the most high-profile missing persons case in history.

    On May 3 this year, it will be 15 years since Madeleine disappeared from her family holiday.

  • Christian B’s lawyers deny he’s charged

    CHRISTIAN B’s lawyers denied that he was charged in the Madeleine McCann case after detectives yesterday made him an official suspect. 

    The 44-year-old was named by German prosecutors as the man ‘responsible’ for Madeleine’s kidnap and murder in June 2020.

    The convicted rapist, 44, was yesterday classed as an ‘arguido’ or ‘formal suspect’ by Portuguese police.

    However, his lawyers denied that he was charged over her disappearance. 

    Friedrich Fuelscher, Christian B’s lawyer, said: “The step taken by the Portuguese authorities should not be overrated.

    “I assume that this measure is a procedural artifice to stop the statute of limitations threatening in a few days.”

    Portugal’s Policia Judiciaria and the Attorney General’s Office have yet to make any official comment. 

  • What are the key dates in Madeleine’s disappearance? (4/4)

    And now, last night Portuguese detectives confirmed convicted child rapist Christian B as an official suspect in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

  • What are the key dates in Madeleine’s disappearance? (3/4)

  • What are the key dates in Madeleine’s disappearance? (2/4)

    • July 4, 2013 – Two years into a review of the case, Scotland Yard launch its own investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance. They claim to have “genuinely new” lines of inquiry and identify 38 people of interest including 12 Britons.
    • October 24, 2013– Portuguese police reopen their case after new lines of inquiry are found.
    • November 27, 2013 – Met Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe called for British and Portuguese police to work together.
    • April 28, 2015 – Detective Goncalo Amaral is ordered to pay Kate and Gerry McCann £209,000 each in damages by a court in Lisbon over claims made in The Truth Of The Lie and bans further sales of the book.
    • October 28, 2015 – Scotland Yard reduces the number of officers working on Madeleine’s disappearance from 29 to four.
  • What are the key dates in Madeleine’s disappearance? (1/4)

    • May 3, 2007 – Kate and Gerry McCann leave their children asleep in their holiday apartments while they eat eat a nearby Tapas restaurant. At 10pm Kate finds Madeleine missing.
    • May 14, 2007 – Property developer Robert Murat is quizzed by cops and named an “arguido” or formal suspect.
    • August 31, 2007 – The McCanns launch libel action against Tal e Qual – a newspaper that claimed the couple killed Madeleine.
    • September 7, 2007 – Kate and Gerry McCann are made “arguidos”.
    • September 9, 2007– Madeleine’s parents return to England with their two-year-old twins, Sean and Amelie.
    • October 2, 2007– Lead detective Goncalo Amaral is taken off the case after criticising British police in a newspaper interview.
    • July 21, 2009 – Portuguese police lift the “arguido” status of  both Robert Murat and the McCanns, and shelve the investigation.
    • July 24, 2009 – Detective Goncalo Amaral alleges that Madeleine died in her family’s holiday flat the day she went missing in a book called The Truth Of The Lie. In a documentary for Portuguese television he claims there was no abduction and the McCanns had hidden her body.
    • May 12, 2011 – On Madeleine’s eighth birthday, Mrs McCann publishes a book about her disappearance. Scotland Yard launches a review into the case after a request from Home Secretary Theresa May, supported by Prime Minister David Cameron.
    • April 25, 2012 – Scotland Yard officers say they believe Madeleine McCann is still alive. A new picture is released, showing what she might look like as a 9-year-old, and they call on the Portuguese authorities to reopen the case, but Portuguese police say they have found no new material.

Source: thesun

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