Madeleine McCann's parents share heartbreaking message on 17th anniversary of disappearance

Madeleine McCann's parents share heartbreaking message on 17th anniversary of disappearance

Madeleine McCann: Christian Brueckner has 'no alibi' prosecutors claim

Holly Bishop

By Holly Bishop

Published: 03/05/2024

- 22:31

Kate and Gerry McCann said their daughter's 'absence still aches'

The parents of Madeleine McCann have shared a heartbreaking message on the 17th anniversary of her disappearance.

Madeleine was three years old when she vanished from a holiday apartment in the Algarve Portugal, on May 3, 2007.

Kate and Gerry McCann have said that their daughter’s “absence still aches” in a statement released on their Find Madeleine website.

They said: “It's 17 years since Madeleine was taken from us.

\u200bKate and Gerry McCann Kate and Gerry McCann share heartbreaking message on 17th anniversary of their daughter's disappearancePA

“It's hard to even say that number without shaking our heads in disbelief.

“Whilst we are fortunate in many ways and able to live a relatively normal and enjoyable life now, the 'living in limbo' is still very unsettling. And the absence still aches.”

The couple added: “Your support continues to encourage us and bolsters our strength to keep going. We know the love and hope for Madeleine and the will to find her, even after so many years, remains, and we are truly thankful for that.

“Thank you again for remembering Madeleine and all missing children.”


McCann family handout photo taken at 2.29pm on May 3 - the day Madeleine McCann (right) went missing from the family's holiday apartment

​A photo taken of Madeleine on the day of her disappearance 


Madeleine vanished whilst on holiday with her parents in Parai da Luz, Portugal, after the McCanns left the three-year-old alone with her two younger siblings whilst they went out for dinner with friends.

May 12 also marks her 21st birthday.

Earlier this week, Home Office Minister Lord Sharpe of Epsom announced a fresh cash injection of up to £192,000 into the investigation.

He also revealed that the Metropolitan Police had spent £13.2million investigating the high-profile case.

Madeleine McCannMadeleine McCann disappeared during a family holiday in 2007PA
Christian BruecknerChristian Brueckner is suspected of abducting the missing British toddler Madeleine McCannGetty

Responding to a parliamentary written question by Conservative peer Lord Black of Brentwood, Lord Sharpe said: “For the year 2024-25 the Home Office has agreed to provide up to £192,000 to the Metropolitan Police Service through special grant funding for Operation Grange, the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

“At March 31 2024, the total cost of the investigation was £13.2million.”

He added: “Operation Grange’s special grant budget currently funds a team of three police officers and one member of police staff, all of whom operate on a part-time basis.

“Special grant funding is reviewed annually by the Home Office. The department also liaises regularly with the Operation Grange investigation team to assess progress and challenge the use of funds as necessary.”

Christian Brueckner, the prime suspect in the disappearance of the three-year-old, is currently facing trial in the German city of Braunschweig for offences unrelated to Madeleine.

The convicted sex offender is on trial for the rape of a woman in her 70s in her home in the Algarve and the rape and sexual assault of a teenage girl.

Brueckner has consistently denied any involvement in Maddie's disappearance.

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