Is Search For Madeleine McCann Jeopardizing The U.K.?

Madeleine McCann is still missing, and the search for her is under intense scrutiny by more than just a suspicious public. The chief of a top policing union, according to the Daily Express, wants the attention being given to the little girl’s case to shift elsewhere — to keeping the U.K. safe. With more than £10 million spent in the search for the missing child, the case is apparently becoming a burden on a system that is becoming increasingly financially vulnerable.

Police unions in the U.K. are facing potential budget cuts as high as £600 million. Meanwhile, at least 63 different police service stations are going to be closed in London. Metro Police Chairman John Tully commented that the resources available to investigating cases outside of London are dwindling.

“The Met has long been seen as the last resort for investigations others have struggled with elsewhere, but we have made £600m of cuts. We have closed 63 police stations across London. Another £800m of cutbacks are anticipated over the next four years.”

The disappearance of Madeleine McCann occurred in Portugal while the child was on a family vacation in 2007. There have been several persons of interest, but her parents were officially declared suspects early in the search by detectives in Portugal. However, they are reportedly no longer suspects, even though Goncalo Amaral — a former detective on the case — believes that both Kate and Gerry McCann are behind the child’s disappearance.

The Telegraph reports that nothing has ever proven what happened to Madeleine when she vanished close to eight years ago. And out of all of the suspects that have come up over the course of the investigation, no arrests have been made. The Operation Grange team have tried for years to find proof that Madeleine McCann was kidnapped from her parents’ vacation rental, but they’ve never been able to find her and they’ve never found any kidnappers.

This is a highly polarizing case that has people divided on whether or not they believe the parents or the detectives that initially declared them as suspects in their daughter’s disappearance. The #McCann hashtag on Twitter and Facebook features debate between both sides. Currently, the debate has touched on whether or not Operation Grange should simply shelf the Madeleine McCann case and move on to other tasks that keep their homeland safe. However, the heated discussions frequently fall back on whether or not you believe Madeleine’s parents.

If the search for Madeleine McCann is shelved permanently by Scotland Yard, does that mean the search will end entirely? The answer to that question will only be evident by what happens next among Scotland Yard’s top brass.

[Photo: Wikimedia Commons]