Sunday, 20 May 2007

Madeleine hunt moves to Africa after ‘sighting’

Sunday Herald
John Bynorth
Police say £2.5m reward hinders search as they check out Norwegian woman’s claim on CCTV

POLICE INVOLVED in the hunt for Madeleine McCann have widened their investigation from Europe to north Africa after a tourist reportedly saw the four-year-old with a mystery man in Morocco.

Portuguese detectives are liaising with Interpol after a Norwegian woman told newspapers she saw a "sad" looking girl fitting Madeleine's description with a 35 to 40-year-old male at a petrol station on the outskirts of Marrakech.

Although there have been a string of unconfirmed "sightings" in Spain and Portugal, and one other in the former Moroccan capital since Madeleine's disappearance 17 days ago, investigators hope CCTV footage will provide conclusive evidence about the latest report.

Marie Olli, 45, said the blonde girl was with an "anonymous" man who could be from Britain. She claimed the pair didn't seem related and she became suspicious when the child asked the man: "Can I see mummy soon?"

However, it wasn't until she returned home to Fuengirola in Spain after the May 9 sighting, six days after Madeleine was snatched from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz on the Algarve, that she saw TV coverage of her disappearance.

The Guardian
In chatrooms and message boards, Madeleine hysteria grips the world

The Independent
Madeleine 'sightings' mount as the agony goes on and on

Sunday Express
Maddy alibi shock

A Police Website Dedicated to Finding Missing and Abducted Children

National Missing Persons Helpline