Madeleine search fund could run out by end of year

The fund to help find Madeleine McCann is likely to run dry by the end of the year, her father has said.

Money for the international search operation is dwindling, Gerry McCann said.

“There’s still money in it. I can’t give you the exact figure, but we have spent – and continue to spend – a lot of money with the aim of trying to enhance the chance of finding her,” he told The Portugal News.

“It won’t dry up in the next few months, but probably by the end of the year, at the rate we are running.”

The fund is believed to have received about £2.5m since Madeleine disappeared from Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007.

Mr McCann, 40, gave the interview to the English language newspaper after returning to Portugal to help in a reconstruction being filmed for a Channel Four 'Cutting Edge' documentary.

Earlier this year, accounts lodged with Companies House showed nearly £2m was raised in the first 10 months after the little girl went missing.

By March 31 last year the official fund had fallen to £600,000 after an initial surge of donations dried up.

More than £815,000 from the fund was spent on efforts to trace Madeleine.

This included £250,000 for search fees, including the bill for Spanish private detectives Metodo 3, £111,522 for legal costs and £123,573 for campaign management.

Mr McCann was reportedly heckled by a small group of locals after going back to the Algarve last week.

The Ocean Club, where the McCanns stayed, recently laid off staff and some blame the redundancies on the impact of the disappearance on tourism.

He said: “I can totally understand that people want to move on. They don’t want the media intrusion and the negative association with Madeleine’s abduction.”

He said he was sorry for any harm caused to the resort.

He continued: “The reason we are doing this documentary is that it should be about Madeleine. I can understand why people don’t like it or that our level of child care was not to their standard, but the focus should be on an innocent child and that someone has taken her.”

He added that there was no evidence to suggest his daughter was dead.

“It’s a possibility we might never see her again, but until we have absolute definitive evidence of what happened to Madeleine, we can’t stop searching.”

Mr McCann said his wife Kate would love to return to the resort but would not be going back for the anniversary of the disappearance.

He highlighted the difficulty caused by the intense media spotlight.

Asked about their relationship, he said: “We are united in our search for Madeleine and we are very strong in our relationship.”

And he said their twins, Sean and Amelie, knew Madeleine was missing, understood she had been taken, but talked about her coming home.

The documentary, being made by Mentorn Media, will be aired on May 7, five days before the youngster’s sixth birthday.

More on this topic

Portuguese detectives have ‘new suspect’ in Madeleine McCann disappearancePortuguese detectives have ‘new suspect’ in Madeleine McCann disappearance

Madeleine McCann: Scotland Yard apply for more funding as local police reportedly have 'new suspect'Madeleine McCann: Scotland Yard apply for more funding as local police reportedly have 'new suspect'

Authors in Madeleine McCann documentary living in Waterford believe 'her abduction was planned'Authors in Madeleine McCann documentary living in Waterford believe 'her abduction was planned'

Madeleine McCann parents speak out against rumoured Netflix documentaryMadeleine McCann parents speak out against rumoured Netflix documentary

More in this Section

Police and protesters clash in Catalonia for third nightPolice and protesters clash in Catalonia for third night

Commuters fight back after Extinction Rebellion protesters climb on top of TubeCommuters fight back after Extinction Rebellion protesters climb on top of Tube

Hong Kong assembly session halted by new opposition protestHong Kong assembly session halted by new opposition protest

Obama endorses Trudeau in unprecedented moveObama endorses Trudeau in unprecedented move


Lifestyle

Experts on bedroom style reveal their top tips to Gabrielle Fagan, so you can create your perfect sleeping space.Let’s go to bed: How to create the cosy winter retreat you’ve always dreamed of

Sink your teeth into our top tips for Halloween dental care.Dental shock: Save your child's teeth from the ‘horrors’ of Halloween

More From The Irish Examiner