Madeleine McCann’s investigation focused on Portuguese reservoirs for the first time in 16 years


Police are preparing to search a reservoir for the body of Madeleine McCann, who went missing in the Algarve, Portugal in May 2007. May 23, 2023 in Silves, Portugal. (Luis Ferreira/Reuters)

SILVES, Portugal—On Wednesday, police led sniffer dogs at a remote Portuguese reservoir to uncover evidence that may link the disappearance of British infant Madeleine McCann 16 years ago to a German suspect. I asked and resumed my search.

Emergency crews with brush cutters arrived early Wednesday morning at a makeshift camp set up on the shores of the Arade Reservoir to clear the search area.

Portuguese police, with the help of Germany and Britain, focused their search on the shoreline of the reservoir on Tuesday, but it is unclear if the search will continue on Wednesday or if divers will be used to search the waters.

McCann was three years old when he disappeared in May 2007 from the bedroom of his family’s apartment at the Praia da Luz resort on the Algarve coast. The reservoir is located approximately 50 kilometers (31 miles) inland from the resort.

Madeline McCann
File photo Madeline McCann. (AP photo)

German prosecutors last year named Christian Bruckner, a German man, as the official suspect in McCann’s disappearance. The convicted child abuser and drug trafficker is jailed in Germany for raping a 72-year-old woman in the same Algarve region where McCann disappeared.

The McCann case remains a mystery as it has remained unsolved for the past 16 years and no body has been found. This sparked a media frenzy in the UK, with press outlets around the world following the development, with celebrities joining the call to find Madeleine.