POLICE in Spain are being urged to re-open any unsolved rape or child abuse cases that could involve a foreigner over the past two decades.
It comes after dangerous paedophile Christian Brueckner was charged with five more serious sex crimes on the Algarve between 2000 and 2017.
The German rapist, who has been named as an official suspect in the disappearance of British toddler Madeleine McCann, spent long periods of time in Spain.
He criss-crossed the country on ‘dozens of occasions’, frequently staying in Granada, as well as Malaga, Almeria and Valencia, from 1995.
Expats and locals have now joined an Irish rape victim – allegedly attacked by Brueckner, 45, in 2004 – who believes there are ‘likely’ many more victims across the Iberian Peninsula.
Hazel Behan, 39, told the Olive Press this week: “Given what we know about Brueckner’s past, alongside the crimes he has recently been charged with, surely it makes sense to revisit all unsolved similar cases in areas where he was known to spend significant lengths of time.”
Behan, who was raped as a young holiday rep on the Algarve, is due to face her alleged attacker Brueckner in a German court in the Spring.
Waving her right to anonymity, the mother-of-three, from Dublin, added: “Victims and their families deserve answers and closure. If there is any indication that Brueckner could be connected to a crime, then this needs the full attention of the police and warrants, at the very least, further investigation.”
In addition to Behan, prosecutors in Germany have charged Brueckner with two further rapes, one of a teenage girl, around 15, as well as another woman in her ‘70s or 80s’.
All three rapes were filmed, after he had attacked and bound the victims.
He will also face two charges of assaulting young children as far apart as 2007 and 2017.
The Olive Press revealed in 2020 that Brueckner was a regular visitor to the Alpujarra region of Granada and stayed for many days at a time.
He was certainly in the Orgiva area for the Dragon music festival in March 2007 and 2008 and he was a regular visitor ‘until at least 2011’ revealed various former friends.
“He was here on dozens of occasions in many vehicles, including his Jaguar, the famous VW van and even his giant winnebago,” one confirmed to the paper this week.
“He was mostly coming here to buy and sell drugs, but who knows what else he got up to,” he added.
It was allegedly during a week-long visit to the Dragon bash in 2008 that he admitted to friends he was involved in the snatching of Maddie, then 3, on the Algarve, in May 2007.
One Orgiva resident, Jo Chipchase, a mother-of-two, is ‘horrified’ that he could be behind crimes in her area.
Chipchase, who attended the Dragon Festival and other parties at the time, added: “I often took my kids so it is horrifying to think that an international sexual predator was mingling among families using the itinerant and largely traveller community to hide within.
“I was completely unaware of the dark element that was clearly lurking, but it would be a perfect way to mask his sick activities.”
The former PR executive, 50, added: “I think there should be more cross-border control of sex offenders to protect the public from crimes like this and anything unsolved, involving any potential links to Brueckner must be reopened.”
Mayor of Orgiva, Raul Orellana, told the Olive Press: “I don’t think there are any ‘denuncias’ to corroborate crimes being committed by him during his time here.”
While Brueckner was first summoned to answer questions over the Maddie case a decade ago, detectives in Germany didn’t start properly probing him until 2016 and named him an official suspect in June 2020.
When police raided his secret box factory, in Saxony, then found hundreds of child porn films and photos – alongside dozens of other, as yet unnamed items – buried in a bag under the body of his dead dog.
Prosecutor Hans Christian Wolters, at Braunschweig Court, told the Olive Press Brueckner will face the five charges in ‘the Spring or early summer’.
Wolters, whose department has been probing Brueckner over Maddie since 2018, added: “We are also certain that he killed the British toddler.”
He would not speculate on any other crimes he might have committed in Spain, or other European countries, but confirmed his department would investigate any credible evidence.
The Guardia Civil was not able to provide any information as we went to press. “We are looking into it, but it will probably take some time,” said a spokesman in Madrid. “We can’t comment at this stage.”
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