MADELEINE McCann suspect Christian B was able to walk free four years ago after a baffling “catalogue of errors”, it’s reported.
The German paedo was recently named as a suspect in the infamous case of the missing Brit child, who vanished from her family’s Portugal holiday apartment in 2007.
The 43-year-old is suspected of involvement in Madeleine McCann’s disappearance[/caption]
The 43-year-old is currently banged up in Germany’s Kiel prison for rape and drugs offences.
But bungling authorities missed the chance to put him behind bars four years ago, according to The Mirror.
He was able to walk free after being cleared of downloading sick child abuse images – despite a higher court ordering a retrial, it’s reported.
He is said to have been let go until the court re-run, when he was convicted and jailed for one year and three months.
But he fled to Portugal and only began his sentence in 2017 when he was extradited, Bild reports.
It is not clear what he did in the meantime, and the missing period is said to have caused trouble for investigators now trying to pin down his movements.
‘CATALOGUE OF ERRORS’
A German legal source said: “This just sums up the catalogue of errors surrounding Christian B.
“He simply slipped through the cracks of the system on several occasions.”
Christian B has been able to benefit from a series of blunders by authorities over the years to evade justice.
He could have been nailed two years before Madeleine vanished — but Portuguese police blundered over evidence in a rape case.
Clothes and rope from a villa where Christian B raped a US woman in 2005 were not DNA tested, so he was not caught until 2017.
The villa is a short stroll from the Praia da Luz apartment where Madeleine was snatched in May 2007.
Christian B used to live in this house in Lagos, southern Portugal[/caption]
German cops search a garden plot in Hannover, northern Germany, last month in relation to Christian B[/caption]
The case was mothballed amid a string of gaffes by Portuguese police with the attacker still at large.
Christian B could also have dodged a police probe seven years ago after a tip to German cops identifying him was ignored.
Officers received the tip-off he could have snatched the youngster from her bed in 2007 after an appeal by Brit cops on German TV in 2013.
A report was prepared for the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) — Germany’s FBI equivalent — by local police in his home town of Braunschweig after the call was made.
‘USED OPEN BORDERS’
But it is unclear whether the crucial tip ever reached British detectives investigating Madeleine’s disappearance, the Mail on Sunday reported.
And he used the EU’s open borders to dodge investigators, lawyers for the German government – arguing against his early prison release – said in July.
Felix Halabi told the court: “He flouted the rules. Despite the requirement to stay in the national territory (Germany) he did not stay, he left for Italy.
“In the case we are looking at the suspect made the most of open European borders.”
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German prosecutor Hans Christian Wolter has publicly said he believes Christian abducted and killed Madeleine, but does have enough evidence to charge him.
Christian B has a list of previous convictions including rape, child sex offences, theft and dishonesty.
He denies any involvement in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
Brit cops conduct a finger-tip search in 2014 of an area near where Madeleine vanished[/caption]
Madeleine’s parents Kate and Gerry hold up a pic of what she might look like five years after her disappearance[/caption]