German prosecutors take up rape allegation against Madeleine McCann suspect that Portuguese police refused to reopen: Investigators believe Christian Brueckner may have attacked Irish mother Hazel Behan on the Algarve in 2004
- Christian Brueckner, 43, is prime suspect in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance
- Investigators believe he may have attacked Hazel Behan in Algarve in 2004
- German authorities have now agreed to open an investigation into the attack
Investigators believe Christian Brueckner, 43, (pictured) may have attacked Hazel Behan in her Algarve apartment in 2004
The prime suspect in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann is now facing another investigation over the alleged rape of an Irish holiday rep in Portugal 16 years ago.
Investigators believe Christian Brueckner, 43, who is already in prison in Germany on a rape charge, may have attacked Hazel Behan in her Algarve apartment in 2004, when she was aged 20.
Three months ago, Mrs Behan demanded police reopen her case after discovering it had striking similarities with the rape of an American woman for which Brueckner was convicted last year.
German authorities have now agreed to open an investigation, prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters confirmed on Tuesday.
Ms Behan, who waived her right to anonymity last month, was working as a holiday rep in Praia da Rocha on the Algarve coast in April 2004.
She recently revealed details of the attack which saw a masked man climb over the balcony to her apartment in the early hours of the morning.
He is said to have held a knife to her throat, tied and gagged her before raping her repeatedly.
The assailant then threatened to kill her before fleeing over the balcony and leaving her bleeding.
Irish woman Hazel Behan, 37, (pictured), waived her right to anonymity last month to share details of the attack which saw a masked man climb over the balcony to her apartment in the early hours of the morning
In June, Brueckner was identified the German man as a suspect in the case of Madeleine McCann (pictured), who disappeared from an apartment in 2007 while her family was on holiday in the resort of Praia da Luz, Portugal
Ms Behan contacted Scotland Yard after Brueckner was named as the main suspect in the Madeleine case with details emerging about his conviction for raping an American woman in similar circumstances.
In June, Brueckner was identified the German man as a suspect in the case of Madeleine, who disappeared from an apartment in 2007 while her family was on holiday in the resort of Praia da Luz, Portugal.
He has two previous convictions for ‘sexual contact with girls’, authorities say, but they do not have enough evidence to hold him in prison on the strength of the McCann case alone.
Mr Wolters said there is ‘no new situation’ regarding the evidence on the McCann case and would not give further details or elaborate on the nature of the evidence.
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