Just as the Scotland Yard was preparing to wind up Operation Grange and the search for Madeleine McCann, a new injection of funds has been made available so the team of detectives can pursue a new lead backing up the theory that Madeleine was kidnapped by a gang of traffickers.
Madeline’s disappearance in 2007 led to high profile searches involving Portuguese police and a team from Scotland Yard whose dedicated officers have come up with zero in terms of clues, evidence and viable leads, perhaps until now.
The additional funding has been allocated to the Metropolitan Police to pursue a line on inquiry that suggests that the British girl was kidnapped by ‘European traffickers.’
The new development is being referred to by senior police as the 'last throw of the dice' in an inquiry that has produced theory after theory, accusation after accusation, missing funds, books, court cases but no evidence.
This new lead, about which Scotland Yard is being super-cagey, is being treated with the utmost importance.
Met Police commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe announced in May this year that Operation Grange would come to an end after one last line of inquiry was looked into. At the time, the then-Home Secretary Theresa May granted the team £95,000 to keep the investigation going.
Government now has released sufficient further funds for the already scaled down Operation Grange to run until April 2017, and the hope is, as ever, that Madeline is alive if abducted from the Ocean Club in Praia da Luz, rather than murdered. If she is alive, Madeline is 13-years-old.
New theories fed to the media by ‘sources close to the case' include the assertion that a gang of spotters was operating in the Praia da Luz in May 2007, looking for children and taking photos of them on the beach.
The truth is that the new line of inquiry is a last ditch attempt and until the police report their findings, speculation is all that the press have to feed on.