Madeleine McCann suspect ‘will not face trial on separate sex charges this year’

The prime suspect in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann will not face trial before next year, following rape and child sexual abuse charges

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On Tuesday, convicted sex offender, Christian Brueckner, was accused of five offences between 2000 and 2017 in Portugal – three counts of rape and two counts of child sexual abuse.

According to the public prosecutor’s office in Braunschweig, Germany, the charges are unrelated to the McCann case.

Police investigators suggest the 45-year-old killed Madeleine McCann, who was three years old at the time, after abducting her from a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, on May 3rd 2007.

Brueckner was identified as a murder suspect in the McCann case by Portuguese officials in June 2020, but has reportedly denied any involvement in the child’s disappearance.

The Braunschweig state court said the initiation of any trial should not be expected in 2022 due to other cases on its schedule. It will decide whether to send the case to trial after the defence have had the opportunity to respond to the charges and raise possible objections.

Brueckner is accused of filming himself raping a woman in her 70s in a holiday apartment. He also allegedly raped a 20-year-old Irish woman in Praia da Rocha; and allegedly filmed himself raping a teenage girl in her Praia da Luz home.

The suspect is also accused of exposing himself to a 10-year-old German girl on Salema beach in Faro and an 11-year-old Portuguese girl in Sao Bartolomeu de Messines while she was sitting on a playground swing.

Kate and Gerry McCann, from Rothley, Leicestershire, left their children asleep in their holiday apartment in southern Portugal while they dined with friends at a nearby restaurant.

Nothing was amiss when Mr McCann checked on the youngsters just after 9pm, but when his wife went back at about 10pm she found Madeleine missing. One of the friends dining with the McCanns, reports having seen a man carrying a child earlier that night.

Exactly 100 days after Madeleine disappeared, investigating officers publicly acknowledged for the first time that she could be dead.

Brueckner is serving a seven-year sentence for rape in Portugal in 2005.

Prosecutors said the investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance continues despite the charges.