Madeleine McCann case: Police searching for suspect Christian Brueckner's 'partner in crime'

  • 14/03/2024

German police are looking for someone else in relation to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann 17 years ago.

Police believe Christian Brueckner's "partner in crime" - a man named Ralph H - may have information about the disappearance.

Brueckner, a convicted paedophile, is the main suspect in the case which has for years captured global headlines. 

He is currently serving a seven-year prison sentence in Germany for raping a 72-year-old woman in the Algarve region of Portugal in 2005 - the same area Madeleine went missing.

On May 3, 2007, Madeleine, aged three at the time, vanished from her apartment bedroom while holidaying with family at the Praia da Luz resort in Portugal. Her parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, were eating with friends nearby at the time.

Now, police want to speak with Ralph H "about his connection" to the case, according to The Sun.   

At least 10 armed officers raided a home just outside Braunschweig in Germany searching for the 56-year-old but he was gone, prompting a manhunt.

Christian Brueckner.
Christian Brueckner. Photo credit: Getty

He's admitted robbing homes with Brueckner, driving his getaway cars.

"We urgently need to speak to this man in connection to his relationship with Christian B," a detective with BKA - Germany's version of the FBI – told The Sun.

"We must find him to ask him about missing Madeleine McCann.

"He's not at home, he doesn't answer the phone, he's apparently disappeared."

Prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters added that "he's a neighbour who could be interesting to talk to, but we can't give out any details on operative matters".

A witness to the police raid, neighbour Anja, described the moment police swarmed the home shouting his name.

"It was quite frightening suddenly seeing them creep in with their helmets and bulletproof vests and jump over his fence."

But Anja said Ralph H hadn't been home for "nearly a week".

According to neighbours, Brueckner and Ralph H ran several "schemes" together.

One of them said "Ralph definitely knows everything about Brueckner's life" but warned "he has no intention of helping the police".