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Disappearance of Madeleine McCann: Portuguese police have no plans to reopen case, official says

This undated composite image shows photos of then 3-year-old missing child Madeleine McCann (left) and a projected computer generated image of her at age 9.
AP Photo/London Metropolitan Police/Teri Blythe

(CBS/AP) LISBON, Portugal - Portuguese police have not yet found any new evidence to merit reopening the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, a senior police official said Thursday.

The comments from deputy national police chief Pedro do Carmo followed a request from U.K. police that Portugal reopen the case of the missing British girl, who vanished during a family vacation in southern Portugal in May 2007 shortly before her fourth birthday.

Portuguese police closed the case the following year after failing to find out what happened to her.

British police now say their review of the case has identified almost 200 possible leads to be followed up.

Do Carmo did not definitively rule out ever reopening the case. But he told The Associated Press that detectives currently sifting through evidence gathered during the initial investigation have yet to find a reason to do so.

"So far, no new element has been found that might provide the basis for a reopening of the investigation" into the girl's disappearance, he said.

Do Carmo refused to comment on the British police's request, but said any new leads had to be "credible" for police to ask the Public Prosecutor to reopen the case. He declined to elaborate.

The Portuguese detectives are liaising with British police, but the Portuguese operation is "independent" and "autonomous," Do Carmo said.

48 Hours Mystery, Feb. 11, 2009:  Where's Maddy?

Complete coverage of Madeleine McCann on Crimesider

  • Crimesider Staff

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