Kate and Gerry McCann are seen posing with a computer
generated image of how their missing daughter Madeleine
might look, during a news conference in London in this May
2012 file photograph. REUTERS/Andrew Winning/Files
Portuguese prosecutors have ordered the reopening of the
investigation into the 2007 disappearance of British girl
Madeleine McCann, saying new leads had emerged in the case.
The decision comes after British police began an inquiry in
July, saying they believed she might still be alive.
Madeleine went missing aged three from her room at the Praia
da Luz holiday resort in the Algarve in May 2007 while her
parents were dining with friends at a nearby restaurant,
leading to a global search that gripped the world's media.
Portuguese police closed their investigation in 2008.
In a statement, the country's public prosecutor's office said
there were potential new elements in the case, without
They said the investigation would be subject to a legal
clause that meant no information in the case would be made
British police welcomed their decision.
"But both sides of the investigation are at relatively early
stages, with much work remaining to be done," said Mark
Rowley, assistant commissioner for Specialist Crime and
Operations at London's Metropolitan Police.
"This new momentum is encouraging, but we still have a way to
go, and as with all major investigations, not all lines of
enquiry that look promising will yield results," said Rowley.
British police said this month they had received hundreds of
calls following a new television appeal that suggested
Madeleine was snatched in a planned abduction and that they
wanted to trace a number of men, including some thought to be
either Scandinavian or German.