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Police are close to identifying the caller whom Madeleine McCann suspected spoke to the night she disappeared

German police investigating Madeleine McCann prime suspect Christian Brueckner are reportedly “almost on the trail” of a mysterious caller he spoke to the night the British teenager disappeared from Praia da Luz.

Officers are reportedly following 16 leads from the audience after relying on a German TV show – similar to CrimeWatch – according to the show’s presenter Rudi Cerne.

According to the presenter, the police described one of the tips as ‘useful’. Apparently it is in the region of Bavaria where Brueckner once lived.

But there is still no sign of convincing evidence, said Mr. Cerne, who is presenting the Aktenzeichen XY crime show.

It comes as MailOnline revealed yesterday that Madeleine’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann would be hugely ‘disappointed but not entirely surprised’ if the German investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance was halted in 2007 due to lack of evidence.

Detectives in Northern Germany have desperately requested information for six weeks to link prime suspect Christian Brueckner to the three-year-old kidnapping, but have not gathered the essential evidence they need.

German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters told the McCanns they had concrete evidence that Madeleine was dead during the biggest breakthrough in the 13-year-old case and said he hoped they could sue Brueckner over the next two months – but added that their investigation will not continue forever.

Madeleine McCann's photo went missing in May 2007 at her family's holiday accommodation in Praia Da Luz on the Algarve

German authorities believe that Christian Brueckner in the photo is responsible for Madeleine's disappearance

German authorities believe that Christian Brueckner in the photo is responsible for Madeleine's disappearance

Madeleine McCann, pictured left, went missing in May 2007 at her family’s holiday home in Praia Da Luz on the Algarve. German authorities believe that Christian Brueckner, pictured right, is responsible for Madeleine’s disappearance.

Kate and Gerry McCann, pictured in April 2007 after a church service in Praia Da Luz, Algarve, will be informed of the investigation by German authorities, who are expected to respond further this week

Kate and Gerry McCann, pictured in April 2007 after a church service in Praia Da Luz, Algarve, will be informed of the investigation by German authorities, who are expected to respond further this week

Kate and Gerry McCann, pictured in April 2007 after a church service in Praia Da Luz, Algarve, will be informed of the investigation by German authorities, who are expected to respond further this week

Lawyers for Brueckner must come before the European Court tomorrow (Thursday) with the allegation that a rape conviction against him in 2005 is unsafe and that he should be released from prison within days.

Mr. and Mrs. McCann, of Rothley in Lesicestershire, had raised their hopes but are now preparing for the worst.

A friend of the McCanns told MailOnline: “It seems that the last suspect can be excluded because there is not enough evidence to charge him, which would be a huge shame to the German authorities and very disappointing but not a total surprise to Kate and Gerry.

At first it seemed such a vital and solid lead and the breakthrough they had been dreaming of, but there doesn’t seem to be any real evidence.

Kate and Gerry have so many times aroused and broken their hopes. All they want is answers and to find out what happened to their daughter after more than 13 years. ‘

“It’s a very frustrating and difficult time for them.”

Brueckner, who is currently in a German prison for drug offenses and is serving a seven-year sentence for raping an American tourist, hopes to be released this week on legal grounds. His appeal will be heard at the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.

Mr. Wolters had told the world that he was convinced that Maddie, who disappeared from a holiday apartment in Portugal in May 2007, had been murdered in May 2007. He said he even knew how she died, but had no idea where her body was.

He has now warned that his team has no plans to “drag this out unnecessarily” and said they would “draw a line” under the investigation at some point.

Time is running out as the joint investigation of three nations, which has become embroiled in public spats, is looking for enough evidence to accuse Brueckner of Maddie’s kidnapping.

McCann’s source said, “If investigations into this suspect are halted due to lack of evidence, Kate and Gerry know that at least the police have tried to realize that they cannot keep it up indefinitely.”

Former family doctor turned medical worker Kate and heart doctor Gerry into a glimmer of hope that their daughter could still be alive. She would now be 17 years old.

The couple, both 52, from Rothley, Leicestershire, had welcomed the high-profile joint call by the British and German police in early June to have witnesses come forward after naming 43-year-old Breuckner.

German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters told the McCanns that they had concrete evidence that Madeleine was dead during the biggest breakthrough in the 13-year-old case and said he hoped they could sue Brueckner over the next two months - but added that their investigation will not continue forever

German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters told the McCanns that they had concrete evidence that Madeleine was dead during the biggest breakthrough in the 13-year-old case and said he hoped they could sue Brueckner over the next two months - but added that their investigation will not continue forever

German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters told the McCanns that they had concrete evidence that Madeleine was dead during the biggest breakthrough in the 13-year-old case and said he hoped they could sue Brueckner over the next two months – but added that their investigation will not continue forever

They said in a statement, “We would like to thank the police forces involved for their continued efforts in the search for Madeleine. All we’ve ever wanted is to find her, discover the truth, and bring those responsible to justice. We will never give up hope of finding Madeleine alive, but whatever the outcome, we need to know if we need to find peace. ‘

When the German authorities put their questions to the last suspect, the McCanns are delighted to know that Scotland Yard continues the search for Maddie. Their nine-year Operation Grange probe will receive new Home Office funding to keep it running until at least next spring.

A Force spokesman said, “The investigation remains open and is continuing, but we cannot comment on it in progress.”

A Interior Ministry spokesman, who is about to formally approve the police’s new request for more money, said: “We do not foresee a problem and often grants, in special cases like this, are granted retroactively while the work is not yet completed. is undertaken. ‘

So far, Op Grange has cost the taxpayer £ 12 million.

The McCanns friend added: “Kate and Gerry have always held a high regard for British police and have placed their full trust in them in search of their daughter. They are relieved and very grateful that a British force is still actively involved in the search for Madeleine. ‘

Portuguese police continue their search for secluded wells near Praia da Luz, from which Maddie disappeared, in the grim hunt for her body. Three have already been investigated, and another 20 are expected to arrive in the coming days.

The McCanns have remained ‘on tenthooks’ after hearing about the latest police activity in the Algarve. The source said, “It’s been a period of long-lasting pain. They still have absolutely no idea what evidence the police have and have no idea whether their daughter is dead or alive. They remain on tension hooks during this time. ‘

Former family spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: “Kate and Gerry want to answer and while the Met still considers Madeleine’s kidnapping as a missing person rather than a murder investigation, it gives a glimmer of hope. They will continue to hope until there is irrefutable evidence to prove that Madeleine is dead. ‘

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