Police investigating the disappearance of Madeleine McCann have been granted more money to continue the search. More than £11m has been spent on the Metropolitan Police inquiry, known as Operation Grange, but funding was due to run out at the end of the month. A Home Office spokesperson said the government was 'committed' to the investigation into the 2007 disappearance of Madeleine in Portugal.
Madeleine's parents Kate and Gerry McCann, of Rothley, Leicestershire, had appealed for the search to continue for their daughter, who was three when she vanished from the family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in Portugal in May 2007. Detectives investigating the disappearance said last year that a 'critical line of inquiry' is being pursued and that with this additional funding they feel they are close to a final breakthrough.
Government funding for the investigation has been agreed every six months, with £154,000 granted from October 2017 until the end of March this year. The Met's Operation Grange was introduced by former Prime Minister David Cameron when asked the force to 'bring their expertise' to the search after please from Kate and Gerry McCann.
Four people became suspects in 2013, but no further action was taken after they were interviewed by Portuguese officers and the Met Police, who visited the holiday resort in 2014. On the 10th anniversary of Madeleine's disappearance in May last year, police said around 40,000 documents had been reviewed and 600 individuals had been investigated.
Kate and Gerry McCann are 'incredibly grateful' to the Home Office for the latest cash injection despite Government austerity, family spokesman Clarence Mitchell said: "They are very encouraged that the Met Police still believe there is work left to be done and they are incredibly grateful to the Home Office for providing an extra budget for the investigation,' he said. It gives them hope that one day they may finally find out what happened to their daughter."
Madeleine would have been 15 now.