Police and cadaver-hunting dogs are on the scene in a backyard in Hanover, Germany, where a secret sealed cellar has just been unearthed in the hunt for missing Briton Madeleine McCann. The cellar was once under a garden shed on property where German pedophile Christian Brueckner, the latest suspect in the missing-child case, once lived. The shed was torn down years ago, but neighbors said Brueckner once spent hours inside.
Police were seen Thursday carrying out a number of items from the cellar, including blue bags of forensic evidence and a child’s bucket.
McCann was just shy of her fourth birthday when she was snatched from her bed while her twin siblings slept nearby at a holiday rental in Portugal in 2007. Her parents, Gerry and Kate McCann, were dining with friends a few hundred yards away when she disappeared.
The case, which has been closed and reopened by Portuguese police several times, has now picked up steam after German authorities identified the convicted pedophile, who is also under investigation for raping a 72-year-old woman.
British police have never lost faith in finding out what happened, spending millions of pounds over the last 13 years on an investigation called Operation Grange, through which they have translated the Portuguese dossier and interviewed many key witnesses.
But it is German police who have so far advanced the search for the truth. Initially they said they were sure McCann was dead, but provided no clues to back up their line of thinking.
McCann’s parents have not commented on the latest development on the case, but are said to be watching closely in hopes of finally finding out what happened to their missing daughter.