The prime suspect in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance could be charged by Christmas, prosecutors say.
German authorities identified convicted sex offender Christian Brueckner, 44, as a prime suspect in Maddie’s case last year.
Officials have been working towards charging him and say they now have “strong new evidence” for a court date by Christmas.
Detectives at Scotland Yard were initially unsure whether Brueckner was their man.
But they now believe he was responsible for Maddie’s disappearance while on holiday with parents in Portugal in 2007, The Sun reports.
German prosecutor Hans Christian Walters told t he publication: “We have strong new evidence against the suspect.
“The investigation is proceeding well and we hope to have an update soon.
“I cannot say when for certain but we are working very hard to solve this case and others where he is a suspect.”
Brueckner has allegedly taunted police claiming they don’t have a “shred of evidence” against him over his alleged links to five sex crimes.
Brueckner, said detectives were “clutching at straws” as they tried to link him to five other sex crimes.
Last year he was named as the prime suspect in the Madeleine case, with the three-year-old disappearing in Portugal where her family were on holiday.
Prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters has also said that Brueckner is being investigated over several other sex attacks in a new book called My Search for Madeleine.
A source told The Sun the sex offender “is aware of the remarks and of the new allegations in this book. But he has been bragging how the police don’t have a shred of evidence.”
The source added: “He says the new book about him is no better than a comic and that the decision by cops to contribute to it just proves how much they are clutching at straws for new leads.”
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Brueckner’s confidence is based around the fact that the prosecution have not handed over the evidence they claim to have, said the source.
Brueckner continues to deny he had anything to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.
The convicted sex offender is allegedly linked to the the murder of a 16-year-old in Belgium and an attack of a girl aged 10.
Mr Wolters was quoted in My Search for Madeleine as saying there was a “good basis” to believe that he assaulted the ten-year-old.
That sex attack took place six miles away from where Madeleine disappeared in Praia da Luz a month later.