In Brief

Madeleine McCann: Scotland Yard identify 12 new leads

Suspects include Brit cleaners who worked near holiday complex where toddler went missing

Madeleine McCann

SCOTLAND YARD has identified 12 new people of interest as part of its review into the 2007 disappearance of Madeleine McCann in Portugal.

The Daily Mail reports the suspects include six British cleaners who were working near the holiday apartment complex in the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz where the three-year-old went missing while her family were on holiday.

The news comes after Scotland Yard launched Operation Grange, a £2m review of all known evidence in the case. Last year detectives claimed there were 195 new leads.

Detective Chief Superintendent Hamish Campbell, head of Scotland Yard’s Homicide and Serious Crime Command, said there were “quite a few” people who could be investigated further “if only to be eliminated”.

Campbell said it was “perfectly possible” the evidence which could lead to the person responsible for her disappearance is already in Portuguese files. Police have hopes that Madeleine, who went missing just days before her fourth birthday, could still be rescued or reappear, as in the case of the Cleveland kidnappings.

Campbell said: “You only have to look at the case in Cleveland, Ohio, and the European cases. Of course there is a possibility she is alive. But the key is to investigate the case and, alive or dead, we should be able to try and discern what happened.”

A spokesperson for Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry McCann said the couple has "been encouraged from the moment the review started and are now greatly encouraged that police have drawn up a shortlist of people who they believe are of interest to the inquiry."

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