Madeleine McCann chief suspect Christian Brueckner did not kidnap the schoolgirl and his phone records will help prove it, his lawyer has insisted.
Friedrich Fulscher spoke out after returning from a fact-finding mission to Portugal, which he says left him convinced of Brueckner’s innocence.
Fulscher said witness accounts of the evening three-year-old Madeleine disappeared from Praia da Luz suggest there is a 90 second window when a kidnapping could have taken place.
German police say that phone records place Brueckner in the area of the resort at the time, but have not pinpointed a location.
Fulscher says he has measured the amount of time it would have taken for Brueckner to travel from various locations in the resort to the apartment, and concluded that he could not have done it without getting caught.
Christian Brueckner (left) could not have taken Madeleine McCann (right) from her parents’ holiday apartment and his phone records will help prove it, his lawyer has insisted
Speaking to the Daily Mirror, he insisted: ‘My client did not commit this crime.’
Brueckner, a 43-year-old convicted paedophile, is currently in jail in Germany over the rape of an American tourist in Praia da Luz in 2005.
As yet no charges have been brought against him over the toddler’s disappearance.
As well as insisting they have evidence that Brueckner is to blame, German prosecutors also claimed to have strong evidence that Madeleine is dead.
None of that evidence has yet been released to the public or to Madeleine’s family, but investigators insist that there is more which cannot be divulged yet.
Prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters was asked last month whether he has any evidence that places Brueckner inside the apartment where Madeleine vanished.
He replied: ‘I have an answer but we have decided not to divulge this information.
Friedrich Fulscher says Brueckner would not have had enough time to kidnap the girl without being seen by witnesses
‘I can’t say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ as that would bring a thousand other questions and I cannot go into details.
‘But you have to believe me when I say we have more evidence.
‘Here in Germany our Public Ministry only divulges things when they are solid.’
Mr Wolters added, however, that prosecutors were no nearer to identifying the person who made a half hour phone call to Brueckner on his mobile while he was near the Ocean Club complex shortly after Madeline disappeared.
The call came from a Portuguese mobile which detectives have been unable to trace, despite a large police appeal.
Mr Wolters said: ‘We have the number that called him but we haven’t managed to attribute that number to anyone at the moment.
‘We don’t know what the conversation was about and we don’t know the relationship between the people who spoke.
‘We are searching for a witness to establish the content of the conversation which lasted nearly half an hour and so was quite a long conversation.
‘We hope someone remembers that conversation. We don’t have any reason to believe that person could be involved in what happened that night to Madeleine.’
He added that there was no smoking gun evidence to link Brueckner to the crime but insisted that there was many pieces of the Madeline puzzle pointing towards the suspect.
The solicitor also said that prosecutors are sure that the British youngster is dead despite British police treating the case as a missing person inquiry.
He said: ‘Everything we have points to her being dead. We have no margin of manoeuvre.’
Mr Wolters also stressed that German police do not believe the chief Madeline McCann suspect had an accomplice and described his ex-girlfriend Nicole Fehlinger as a witness.
Madeline McCann’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann appeal for help finding their daughter
Portuguese police search for the missing toddler shortly after her disappearance
Brueckner’s lawyer Friedrich Fulscher has insisted his client, currently serving a 21-month drug sentence in prison in the German city of Kiel, has nothing to do with Madeleine’s disappearance.
Brueckner is also being probed in Germany over a 2004 Algarve rape and a sex attack on a beach near Praia da Luz a month before Madeleine vanished.
In Portugal prosecutors have reopened their investigation into a sex crime in a playground he was arrested over in 2017.
He was held on suspicion of exposing himself to young children at a playground in Sao Bartolomeu de Messines a 40-minute drive from Praia de Luz.
Police discovered after his detention that he was wanted in Germany on an international arrest warrant for child sex abuse and possession of child pornography.
He was extradited to his homeland and was never prosecuted in Portugal following his Algarve arrest.
The criminal probe was mothballed despite protests from the youngsters’ angry parents but reopened earlier this month.
On Thursday Brueckner was told he would remain in jail after losing a legal challenge against an earlier extradition from Italy to Germany which he insisted should lead to him being freed early.
The ruling means he will now stay in jail until 2024 at least.