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It’s been almost 12 years since Madeleine McCann, then just 3 years old, vanished from her British family’s vacation villa in the Algarve region of Portugal.
The circumstances surrounding Madeleine’s disappearance were any parent’s worst nightmare. And the ensuing years have only compounded the anguish of Madeleine’s physician parents, Gerry and Kate McCann, who faced suspicion and intense media scrutiny after their daughter first went missing in May 2007.
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In September of that year, Portuguese authorities even named the parents as suspectsthis link opens in a new tab in the girl’s disappearance. The couple later won a libel suitthis link opens in a new tab against a Portuguese detective who wrote a book claiming the McCanns were involved in her vanishing act.
A new 8-part Netflix docuseries, The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann, released today, reexamines the high-profile case with fresh eyes. The documentary is directed by Chris Smith of the recently released Fyrethis link opens in a new tab, about the 2017 Fyre Music Festival.
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Was Madeleine Sold Into a Trafficking Ring?
On May 3, 2007, Madeleine; her twin 2-year-old siblings, Sean and Amelie; and her parents were enjoying a family vacation at a Portugese resort called Praia da Luz.
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Madeleine’s parents left their three kids asleep in their room so the couple could go to dinner with friends at a nearby tapas restaurant, a mere 80 yards away. They took turns checking on the three children every 20-30 minutes, but when Kate McCann went to check on the kids around 9:30 pm, the film says, she noticed an open window — and that Madeleine was missing from her bed.
Though the girl’s parents were an early target of suspicion, this subsided over the years.
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The film advances the theory that Madeleine was abducted and potentially sold into a trafficking ring. Though it’s a disturbing idea,...
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