Portugal-MissingGirl- 1stLd-Writethru 09-07

Gerry McCann, the father of missing British girl Madeleine McCann, arrives at the police station in Portimao for questioning Friday.

Parents named as suspects

For four months, the world watched in horror and grim anticipation as police pursued the presumed abductor of wide-eyed British 4-year-old Madeleine McCann. Then, authorities dramatically turned the tables, naming the girl’s parents as suspects.

Suddenly, a couple who had been the beneficiary of so much sympathy and so many prayers — meeting with Pope Benedict XVI and getting support from celebrities like J.K. Rowling and David Beckham — found themselves in the crosshairs.

Most of the suspicion has focused on Madeleine’s mother, Kate, long praised for her strength amid an unimaginable ordeal. The girl’s aunt said police suggested Madeleine might have been killed accidentally and offered the mother a plea deal if she confessed.


Kate McCann was questioned for more than four hours Friday in a second straight day of interrogation into the disappearance of Madeleine in southern Portugal.

Her husband, Gerry McCann, followed her into the police station in the southern Portuguese town of Portimao for a separate round of questioning.

Both were named suspects, their lawyer, Carlos Pinto Abreu told reporters. "They have not been charged, and the investigation continues," he said without elaborating.

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