The lawyer for the prime suspect in the Madeleine McCann case Christian Brueckner has said that he does not believe the German will ever be charged in the case.
Friedrich Fulscher has said that the main witness against Brueckner, 43, is a criminal who swapped information for police favours.
German Brueckner, a convicted paedophile, is currently in prison in Kiel, Germany on a drugs conviction and police are gathering evidence to charge him within the next two months.
The lawyer told Sky News that the informant who claimed suspect Brueckner – a German drifter – confessed his guilt to him in a bar may have done so as a cry for help in 2017 and ‘is the worst witness you can get.’
It is believed that the unnamed witness told detectives that the German said that he knew what had happened to Madeline McCann, who famously disappeared in 2007 from a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal.
Fulscher, however, believes that the police informant may have got an early release from a sentence he was serving in a foreign country in return for the information.
‘If this is the same person, I think it’s the worst witness you can get,’ Fulsner said in an interview with Sky News. ‘A human who has spent his whole life cheating people for his own benefit is never a reliable witness.’
Prime suspect Christian Brueckner’s lawyer says that his client will ever be charged in relation to the case, saying the key witness is unreliable
Speaking to Sky News (pictured) Brueckner’s lawyer Friedrich Fulscher said that the main witness against Brueckner is a criminal who swapped information for police favours
Brueckner is currently the target of Hans Christian Wolters – a German prosecuter – who has said he believes Brueckner abducted and killed Madeline, but he has so far not gathered enough evidence to charge him.
Wolters said he would not allow the case to drag on and would announce any decision to drop it, but Fulscher said that even dropping the case would be too late to restore his client’s reputation.
Many people, he said, would always consider Brueckner responsible for the British girl’s, even if he is found to innocent.
‘If you pee in the same place long enough it will stink,’ he said. ‘And that’s definitely what’s happening in the Christian B case. He won’t be able to lead a normal life at any point, without being recognised and facing hostility.
‘A prosecutor who goes public (during an investigation) knows that. He can destroy a reputation and it was taken very lightly in this case.’
He went on to say that a prosecutor is aware of the potential reputational damage to a suspect if the prosecutor goes public, saying that the decision to do so was ‘taken very lightly in this case.’
Madeleine McCann (pictured) went missing from her parents holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in Portugal in 2007
Earlier in the week, the lawyer also spoke to The Sun about the case, saying: ‘Where is the evidence? Why has the prosecution not revealed it? There won’t be a trial for my client for Madeleine McCann. I am certain.’
However, Fulscher said if the case ever did get to trial, Christian Brueckner would face the court ‘serenely and calmly… he has nothing to hide’.
Investigators in the Madeleine McCann case breathed a sigh of relief last week after the EU’s top court moved to block Bruekner’s bid for release.
The 43-year-old tried to overturn his conviction and seven-year jail term for the 2005 rape of a 72-year-old American woman in Praia da Luz.
He argued that he had been extradited from Portugal to Germany in 2017 on the basis of a drugs charge, not the rape, making the case against him invalid.
But the European Court of Justice’s Advocate General today gave legal advice that Bruekner’s argument should be dismissed.
Legal expert Michal Bobek said that Brueckner had left Germany to travel to Italy in 2018, after he had been extradited from the Algarve the previous year.
Police use rakes to search an allotment in Hanover on July 28 as part of the Madeleine investigation
He was then arrested in Milan and extradited to Germany a second time, under a different warrant that allowed him to be prosecuted for the rape of the pensioner.
It means that the child abuser, who has been convicted several times, is unlikely to be released on 7 January 2021, buying Madeleine McCann detectives valuable time to build the case against him.
While the opinion is not binding on ECJ judges, they usually follow the assessment of the Advocate General.
The Advocate General at the Luxembourg-based Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) gave a non-binding opinion that Brueckner’s extradition was unlawful, raising fears that he would be freed.
Brueckner is currently serving a sentence for drug dealing in the prison in Kiel in the north of Germany but could have been freed immediately, as he had already served two-thirds of his sentence.
This now looks unlikely, which will boost hopes that enough evidence can be gathered to allow the 43-year-old to be charged with the murder of Madeleine McCann.
Brueckner was extradited from Portugal to Germany in 2017 where he was jailed for sex offences against children.
He was released in August 2018 but was put under ‘surveillance’ and required to meet with a probation officer once a month.
Madeleine’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann have endured 13 years of heartbreak following their daughter’s disappearance
But he fled the country – first to the Netherlands and then on to Italy – and was arrested in Milan and extradited back to Germany and jailed for drug offences dating back to 2011.
His lawyer told the court last month he had simply ‘gone on holiday’ and that there had been no requirement for him to inform the authorities he was leaving the country.
He said: ‘In the framework of the supervision order he was not required to remain on German territory.’
Last month, German police named the serial sex offender as their prime suspect in the kidnap and murder of three-year-old Madeleine who vanished on May 3rd 2007 while on holiday in Praia da Luz with parents Kate and Gerry McCann.
Mobile phone data showed Brueckner was in Praia da Luz when the little girl – who was just days away from turning four – was taken.
German investigators also allege that records show he received a 30-minute phone call on the night of the crime.
Detectives in northern Germany have spent months making desperate appeals for information to link Brueckner to the youngster’s abduction but have not so far secured the vital evidence they need.
Wolters, who is leading the investigation, has told the McCanns they have concrete evidence that Madeleine is dead, in the biggest break-through in the 13-year-old case.
He said he hoped to be able to charge Brueckner within the next two months – but has added that their investigation will not drag on forever.
Wolters has said the outcome of the ECJ hearing could result in Brueckner’s rape conviction being quashed.