Police tip-off hints Maddie linked to Belgian paedophile ring
An informant says a paedophile ring in Belgium made an order for a young girl three days before British toddler Madeleine McCann went missing.11 August 2008
LONDON - British toddler Madeleine McCann could have been abducted "to order" for a Belgian paedophile ring, Portuguese police files now published on the case suggest.
Reports in Britain said Thursday that Scotland Yard passed on a report from an informant who said a photograph of the child on holiday in Portugal was taken and passed to a "purchaser" in Belgium days before she vanished on 3 May 2007.
The information was contained in an e-mail from Scotland Yard, and Portuguese police pursued the lead with Interpol, which gathered further reports from Belgium, Britain, Finland and Germany.
But Portuguese chief detective Paulo Rebelo, head of the Madeleine inquiry, ruled that all but the German intelligence showed a "lack of credibility" and ordered that the tip-off should be filed.
"Intelligence suggests that a paedophile ring in Belgium made an order for a young girl three days before Madeleine McCann was taken," the e-mail said.
"The purchaser agreed that the girl was suitable and Maddie was taken," it added.
[dpa / Expatica]