David Cameron is willing to help the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann if the British inquiry is held up by delays in the Portuguese legal system, the Prime Minister's official spokesman has said.
Speaking after a new police appeal into the four-year-old's 2007 disappearance, following information about a "lone intruder" who abused girls in the Algarve, he said Mr Cameron would be willing "to make further representations to the Portuguese government...if that would be helpful."
Police investigating the disappearance of Leicestershire girl Madeleine McCann have taken more than 250 calls from members of the public after a second Crimewatch appeal, last night.
Officers revealed they were looking for a lone intruder who sexually abused four girls during a series of break-ins at holiday homes in the Algarve, Portugal between 2004 and 2010.
DCI Andy Redwood said last night: “While some of these offences have been in the public domain before, following our appeal in October three more were reported to us as a direct result of that appeal. One of those reports we believe is the first in the potential series."
Police say they will now review the information they have received
The Metropolitan Police's DCI Andy Redwood said that binmen were heard by witnesses in two sex attack cases police believe could be linked to the 2007 disappearance of Madeleine McCann, in a new appeal for information today.
Police have appealed for anyone else who may have been a victim of the man who they are now investigating in the Madeleine McCann case to come forward.
– DCI Andy Redwood
If you have been a victim of a similar crime please come forward even if you reported the incident to police in Portugal, or anywhere else, please do not assume we have been made aware of it.
While some of these offences have been in the public domain before, following our appeal in October three more were reported to us as a direct result of that appeal.
One of those reports we believe is the first in the potential series.
Numbers for victims to call:
- In the UK: 0800 0961011
- Non-UK residents: +44 207 1580 126
- Those wishing to remain anonymous: Crimestoppers - 0800 555 111
The Metropolitan Police have released a computer generated image of the distinctive burgundy long sleeve top worn by a man that detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are looking for.
The new suspect in the search for Madeleine McCann broke into homes when parents were asleep between 2am and 5am in 12 known incidents between 2004 and 2010.
Ten of the cases were reported to Portuguese police, however detectives in the UK were not aware of them until three British families came forward following an appeal in October last year.
Describing the events as “grim” Det Supt Redwood said that police would be able to rule out anyone named in terms of the most serious incident - suggesting DNA is available for at least one case.
– Det Supt Redwood
In the most serious case we have the ability to eliminate the person named.
We need the public to carefully consider what we’re saying and if they have anyinformation that may be similar we need to know about it.
We need to know if there are any similar cases. Last time three families came forward so we need to know if there are any others.
Detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann have released details about the man they are looking for:
- Dark, tanned skin, with short dark unkept hair
- Speaks in English with a foreign accent
- Slow, slurred speech and a calm demeanour
- An unusual smell – either tobacco or aftershave
- Two families say he was wearing a distinctive burgundy round-neck top with a white circle on the back
Detectives investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are looking for a lone intruder who sexually abused five girls during break-ins at holiday homes
Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood said tracing the tanned, dark-haired man man, said to have "an unhealthy interest in young white female children", is one of his priority lines of inquiry.
The man is suspected of breaking in to 12 properties where British families were staying in the Algarve, Portugal between 2004 and 2010.
In the incidents girls aged between seven and 10 years of age were sexually assaulted.
These attacks happened between 2004 and 2006, before Madeleine vanished in 2007.
His team currently have 38 people classed as "persons of interest" to the inquiry, and are also sifting through details of 530 known sex offenders whose whereabouts they cannot account for.
Of those 59 are classed as high priority, and some of those are British.
Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann are looking for a lone intruder who sexually abused four girls during a series of break-ins at holiday homes in the Algarve, Portugal between 2004 and 2010, Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood said today