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Last updated: 10:23 AM

From Press Association


Police swoop on web designer's home

Press Association
Wednesday May 16, 2007 8:48 PM

Police are investigating a web designer linked to the key suspect in the Madeleine McCann investigation.

Detectives swooped on the home of 22-year-old Sergey Malinka, who designed a website for suspect Robert Murat, in Praia da Luz.

After spending two hours inside, the plain clothes officers emerged carrying two hard drives, a laptop and a black bin bag full of items.

Mr Malinka, who neighbours said was Russian and lived in the town for around seven years, was brought out by the detectives and driven off.

During the search a courtyard surrounding the entrance to his apartment where he was believed to live with his parents, was sealed off.

The search followed the announcement on Tuesday by Portugal's Policia Judiciaria that they now had a suspect.

Mr Murat, who strenuously denies any involvement in Madeleine's abduction, was taken in for questioning by the PJ two nights ago before being released.

While he was being questioned, police were searching his mother's house just a short distance from where Madeleine was snatched. Among items said to have been removed was a computer and other communications equipment.

Although police say they do not have enough evidence to charge or even formally arrest Mr Murat, he is the first person they have formally cast as a "Arguido" - suspect.

The latest twist in the case came on the day that relatives of the McCanns launched a fighting fund to pay for international efforts aimed at bringing Madeleine home safely.

© Copyright Press Association Ltd 2007, All Rights Reserved.

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