Madeleine McCann case investigators unearth new suspect and say they are 'near to knowing what happened'

The release of the police statement coincided with the 12th anniversary of Madeleine's disappearance from the holiday apartment while her parents were eating at a tapas restaurant nearby with friends


                            Madeleine McCann case investigators unearth new suspect and say they are 'near to knowing what happened'

Authorities who are investigating the 12-year-long case of toddler Madeleine McCann's disappearance are now looking into a new suspect, according to Portuguese media. The Policia Judiciaria is reportedly deploying more resources into the child's case. Madeleine was only three years old on May 3, 2007, when she vanished from a holiday rental apartment in Algarve where her family had been staying.

The Sun reported that Portuguese daily newspaper Correio da Manha claimed today, May 3: "Police are following new Maddie kidnap clues. More inspectors are advancing an investigation into a new suspect. A new clue and a new suspect, which the PJ are trying to keep an absolute secret, has led to new resources being put in place to investigate the little girl’s whereabouts."

In this handout photo, released on September 16, 2007, missing child Madeleine McCann smiles (Source: Handout/Getty Images)

The investigation into the toddler's disappearance was re-opened in Portugal in October 2013 after convicted burglar Euclides Monteiro was linked to the inquiry. Authorities in Porto are said to be the ones who are looking into the new information. The newspaper also said that the new line of inquiry did not focus on Kate and Gerry McCann, Madeleine's parents.

Officials have said that even though they may be closer to finding out what happened to Madeleine, there are still "many doubts" that she is still alive. The release of this statement coincided with the 12th anniversary of Madeleine's disappearance from the holiday apartment while her parents were eating at a tapas restaurant nearby with friends.

Candles light a photograph of Madeleine McCann inside the church of Praia da Luz, near Lagos, on May 3, 2017, during a mass ceremony marking the 10th anniversary of her disappearance (Source: STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images)

Kate and Gerry have vowed to keep looking for their daughter "for as long as it takes". They will be attending church close to their home in Rothley, Leicestershire, today to mark the anniversary of their daughter's disappearance. They have released a statement saying: "As much as we’d like to fast forward the first couple of weeks of May, there’s no getting around it."

The statement continued: "The months and years roll by too quickly. Madeleine will be sixteen this month. It’s impossible to put into words just how that makes us feel. There is comfort and reassurance though in knowing that the investigation continues and many people around the world remain vigilant."

Kate and Gerry McCann are seen during an interview with the BBC's Fiona Bruce at Prestwold Hall on April 28, 2017, in Loughborough, England. (Source: Joe Giddens - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Metropolitan Police chief Cressida Dick has also confirmed on May 2 that the force has applied for more money from the Home Office to continue its Operation Grange to look for Madeleine. She said: "We have active lines of inquiries and I think the public would expect us to see those through. A very small team continues to work on this case with Portuguese colleagues and we have put in an application to the Home Office for further funding."

MEA WorldWide (MEAWW) had previously reported that Kate was accused of being a secret MI5 agent at the time her daughter went missing, last month. Sparking fury within the family, the ridiculous allegation in the days leading up to the 12th anniversary of Maddie’s disappearance on May 3 is not the first time that the 51-year-old has been accused of being in UK's secret service.