The parents of Madeleine McCann have issued a heartbreaking statement on what would have been her 20th birthday.
Maddie went missing when she was three years old while on holiday in Praia da Luz, Portugal, on May 3, 2007.
Maddie and her sister had been left asleep on the ground floor of an apartment while their parents had dinner at the Ocean Club’s open-air tapas restaurant about 50m away.
They checked on the children periodically through the night and Maddie was discovered missing at 10 pm.
No one has ever been charged over the toddler’s disappearance.
To mark her birthday, her parents Kate and Gerry wrote on Facebook: “Happy birthday Madeleine! We love you and we’re waiting for you. We’re never going to give up.”
They added: “She’s still missing, still missed and we are never going to give up trying to find her.”
Maddie’s parents have had a tough year after German prosecutors announced they were dropping charges against Christian Brueckner, the main suspect in the case, as they do not have jurisdiction over him.
Brueckner, 45, is a convicted sex offender currently serving a seven-year sentence in Germany over the rape of a pensioner in Praia da Luz.
He was known to be camping in Praia da Luz at the same time Maddie went missing.
Brueckner had been charged with three counts of aggravated rape and two counts of sexually abusing children in Portugal around the time Maddie went missing but the charges have now been dropped.
He has never faced charges relating to Maddie.
In another blow to the McCann’s a woman drew worldwide media attention after claiming she was Maddie.
A DNA test later proved that Julia Wandelt was Polish.
Wandelt has apologized to the McCanns before being embroiled in a police investigation over allegations of indecent images being found on her phone.
Kate and Gerry issued a statement after the DNA tests proved Wendelt wasn’t Maddie, stating: “There isn’t anything to report at this time. If and when there is, it will come from The Metropolitan Police.”
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