MADELEINE MCCANN SEARCH LIVE: German and Portuguese police ‘looking for rags and pink pyjamas’ continue their search for signs of the missing child at Algarve reservoir

This is MailOnline’s live blog following the second day of searches being carried out by Portuguese and German police in the Algarve for signs of Madeleine McCann. The hunt underway at the Barragem do Arade reservoir – around 30 miles from Praia da Luz where the three-year-old went missing in 2007.

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The disappearance of Madeleine McCann from the popular holiday resort in Portugal’s Algarve has confounded detectives for more than 16 years.

No one has ever been charged in connection with the disappearance of Maddie, who would now be almost 20. However, German prosecutors believe they have an answer to the 16-year-old mystery: convicted paedophile Christian Brueckner.

The suspect lived in the Algarve between 1995 and 2007 and burgled hotels and holiday flats as well as trading drugs. He had been jailed for seven years in 2019 for raping and robbing a 72-year-old American woman in her home in the Algarve.

In April last year, he was formally identified by Portuguese police as an official suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance.

But last month, a court in the German city of Braunschweig threw out unrelated rape and sexual offences against Brueckner. His lawyer Friedrich Fuelscher said the decision meant legal authorities there had no jurisdiction over the McCann case.

Brueckner is currently in prison for the unrelated rape of a 72-year-old woman in Praia da Luz – the same resort Maddie went missing from. He has not been charged with any crime relating to her.

Read MailOnline’s full explainer on Cristian Brueckner here:

According to reports overnight, detectives scouring the reservoir in Portugal are searching for pyjamas worn by Madeleine McCann on the night she vanished in 2007.

Last night a Portuguese source close to the investigation told The Sun: ‘The search is being taken very seriously and is being controlled totally by the Germans.

‘They asked Portuguese officers assisting them to look for any evidence – but especially rags.’

The Times reported that Madeleine’s pyjamas, which were pink and decorated with images of Eeyore from Winnie The Pooh, were a focus of the hunt.

Maddie’s parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, held up a similar pair of pyjamas during a press conference in 2007 – in the weeks after their daughter went missing in the Praia da Luz resort in Portugal.

Yesterday, officers were spotted removing bags from the scene. It was not clear what they contained.

Pictures are coming through from the Barragem do Arade reservoir today, where investigators will soon begin the second day of searching for signs of Maddie.

According to reports in Portugal, the water level in the reservoir is currently lower than is typical for this time of year. This could be one reason why the operation is being carried out now.

Pictures from the scene show another clear day for the search. There are no clouds to be seen over the mirror-like surface of the lake. Officers from Portugal’s National Republican Guard (GNR) appear to be the first to arrive at the basecamp that has been set up for the search.

Good morning and welcome to MailOnline’s live blog, following the second day of searches being carried out in Portugal for signs of the missing British toddler, Madeleine McCann.

The youngster vanished in 2007 from Praia da Luz, around 30 miles from the Barragem do Arade reservoir that is currently being scoured by German and Portuguese police.

The first major search for Madeleine in nine years comes after German police discovered photos of prime suspect Christian Brueckner at his self-described ‘little paradise’ in the Portuguese region.

It is understood that detectives are scouring the lake for the pink pyjamas the British girl was wearing when she vanished 16 years ago, sources close to the investigation revealed last night.

Reports said officers, who are acting on ‘credible information’, are seeking any fragments of clothing and old rags that could be related to her disappearance.

Read our full report below, and follow the live blog for further updates:

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