‘I’m 100% certain it was him’: Former friend of prime Madeleine McCann suspect says he is now confident Christian Brueckner took the three-year-old girl in 2007 – now that he knows about his ‘paedophile past’
- Christian Post, 54, believes Christian Brueckner snatched Madeleine during one of his burgling ‘night crawls’ while she slept in Portuguese resort Praia da Luz
- Post claimed Brueckner, 45, would boast to him about stealing from holiday flats and amassing a haul of around 100 passports
- It was only when Post became aware of Brueckner’s conviction for child sex offences that he was convinced he took Madeleine
- Brueckner is currently serving a seven-year jail sentence in Germany for raping a 72-year-old woman
A former friend of the prime suspect in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance is ‘100% certain’ he abucted the three-year-old girl in 2007.
Christian Post, 54, believes Christian Brueckner snatched Madeleine during one of his burgling ‘night crawls’ while she slept in the Portuguese resort Praia da Luz.
Post, a musician and IT expert, claimed Brueckner, 45, would boast to him about stealing from holiday flats and amassing a haul of around 100 passports.
It was only when Post became aware of Brueckner’s conviction for child sex offences that he became convinced he took Madeleine.
Brueckner is currently serving a seven-year jail sentence in Germany for raping a 72-year-old woman.
Post told The Mirror from his home in Cambodia: ‘Now I know about his paedophile past, his rapist past. I’m 100% certain it was him. I think he found [Madeleine] by chance and just took her on the spur of the moment.
A former friend of the prime suspect in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance is ‘100% certain’ he abucted the three-year-old girl in 2007. Christian Post, 54, believes Christian Brueckner (pictured) snatched Madeleine during one of his burgling ‘night crawls’ while she slept in the Portuguese resort Praia da Luz
‘I think once you are a paedophile, there is a switch in your brain that cannot be turned off.
‘If he saw a little girl asleep, alone in her apartment, he would definitely have taken her.’
Brueckner was twice extradited from Portugal for sex crimes against children but detectives investigating the three-year-old Briton’s disappearance never considered he could be involved.
The serial sex attacker was first sent back to Germany in 1999 after he had spent four years on the run in the Algarve and served a two-year sentence in youth custody for sexually abusing a child.
It was only when Post became aware of Brueckner’s conviction for child sex offences that he became convinced he took Madeleine
Post said he regrets not tipping off police about Brueckner’s burglary crimes but insisted he is willing to try to help bring him to justice. Madeleine disappeared from an apartment building (above) where she was staying with her family
He was sent back to Germany a second time in 2017 to serve a 15-month prison sentence for sexually abusing a child and possession of child pornography.
Post added that he regrets not tipping off police about Brueckner’s burglary crimes – but insisted he is willing to try to help bring him to justice.
The revelation comes as Scotland Yard is set to wind up its investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance, according to reports.
The Sun claimed last month that funding for the Operation Grange inquiry – launched four years after the Portuguese police began their unsuccessful search for the youngster in 2007 – will end later this year unless new lines of inquiry emerge.
A source quoted by the newspaper said: ‘The end of the road for Operation Grange is now in sight. The team’s work is expected to be completed by autumn.
‘There are currently no plans to take the inquiry any further.’
Detectives are said to be frustrated by the failure to compile sufficient evidence to prosecute Brueckner, who was named two years ago by German police as the prime suspect for Madeleine’s abduction.
He has denied any involvement in the disappearance of the youngster.
Operation Grange, overseen by the Metropolitan Police, is estimated to have cost £13 million.
The Sun said it was understood that Madeleine’s parents, Gerry and Kate, both 54, are aware of the impending closure but have vowed to continue their search.
The Operation Grange team has in recent years been pared down from 40 officers to just four detectives working under Detective Chief Inspector Mark Cranwell.
His team also liaises with Madeleine’s parents, of Rothley, Leicsestershire.
In June 2020, police in Britain and Germany launched a renewed appeal for witnesses after disclosing they had a new suspect, who was later revealed to be Brueckner.
In May last year, Kate and Gerry McCann (pictured) restated they still believed Madeleine could be alive. A statement that month said: ‘The Covid pandemic has made this year even more difficult for many reasons but thankfully the investigation to find Madeleine and her abductor has continued’
German prosecutors remain convinced he was responsible for the youngster’s disappearance but despite an intensive investigation have not brought any charges.
Brueckner also is alleged to have admitted abducting Madeleine to a friend – and the German team of investigators, led by public prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters, said they were certain he had killed the three-year-old.
It is now highly unlikely that he will be charged over her disappearance.
Wolters went as far as holding a press conference where he addressed Madeleine’s parents Kate and Gerry over the air.
He insisted: ‘We are confident we have the man who took and killed your daughter. All I can do is ask for your patience.’
But claims German detectives had sent multiple notes to Madeleine’s family were rubbished within days.
And the Met itself released a pointed statement correcting the allegations about the correspondence.
It said last year: ‘The Met received one letter from the BKA [Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany] on June 12, which was passed to the family.
‘The letter did not state that there was evidence or proof that Madeleine is dead, the MPS continues to investigate Madeleine’s disappearance as a missing person investigation. No letter has been received by the Met from the German prosecutor.’
In fact in May last year, Kate and Gerry restated they still believed she could be alive.
A statement that month said: ‘The Covid pandemic has made this year even more difficult for many reasons but thankfully the investigation to find Madeleine and her abductor has continued.
‘We hang on to the hope, however small, that we will see Madeleine again. As we have said repeatedly, we need to know what has happened to our lovely daughter, no matter what. We are very grateful to the police for their continued efforts.’
Brueckner is also currently serving a prison sentence for drug trafficking and is expected to remain behind bars until 2026 after losing a bid to overturn a rape conviction.
He was last year found guilty of the 2005 rape of a 72-year-old American woman in the same Portuguese resort from which Madeleine vanished and sentenced to seven years in jail, at a court in Brunswick, Lower Saxony.
Brueckner was in Praia da Luz when Madeleine went missing on the night of May 3, 2007, pinpointed there by a mobile phone call.
Madeleine – then aged three – disappeared from an apartment where she was staying with her family.
Kate and Gerry, had been dining with friends in a nearby restaurant and periodically checking on Madeleine and her two siblings – Sean and Amelie – as they slept.
Around 9pm, Gerry went to check on the children and found them sleeping. At 9.30pm, a family friend went to the apartment and heard no noise, but did not check far enough into the room to see if Madeleine was there.
At 10pm, Kate went to check on the children and found Maddie was gone.
The disappearance was reported immediately and a search party launched the same evening including officers from the Guarda Nacional Republicana and the Polícia Judiciária, which launched an investigation.
Amaral was brought in to head that investigation and ran it for several months, infamously naming both Kate and Gerry as suspects.
He was sacked shortly after launching a public attack on British detectives – accusing them of only pursuing investigative lines given to them by the McCanns.
He has since published a book and appeared in a documentary called ‘The Truth of the Lie’ in which he repeated his claims against the McCanns.
The family won a libel suit against him in 2015, and were awarded £500,000 in damages.
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