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British Girl Kidnapped in Portugal Turns Four

Reuters
May 12, 2007

There has been an outpouring of public sentiment in Britain after a four-year-old girl was kidnapped from her holiday home. (Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
There has been an outpouring of public sentiment in Britain after a four-year-old girl was kidnapped from her holiday home. (Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)


PRAIA DA LUZ—A British girl kidnapped in Portugal spent her fourth birthday still missing on Saturday, prompting a call from her parents for redoubled efforts to find her.

Madeleine McCann disappeared nine days earlier from her bed in a resort hotel where she had been on holiday with her parents in the Algarve. Police say all evidence points to an abduction.

"Today is our daughter Madeleines fourth birthday," said Alex Woolfall, a representative for the holiday company used by parents Gerry and Kate McCann, speaking on their behalf. Photo

"We would like to mark it by asking people to redouble their efforts to help find Madeleine."

Police ended a physical search for Madeleine in the area immediately around the Praia da Luz resort this week but hundreds of investigators are still working on the case.

Portuguese daily Correio de Manha reported that police are now looking for two men and a woman who were filmed on security cameras with a young girl at a petrol station not far from the resort where Madeleine disappeared.

Newspapers and television have reported the same trio may have been at the same beach as the McCanns a few days before the kidnapping, taking pictures of Madeleine. One witness near the beach had reportedly complained of his child being photographed.

On Friday, David Beckham made a televised appeal for her release, and a British millionaire has offered 1 million pounds to anyone who finds Madeleine.

Woolfall said such offers had given the McCanns hope.



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