drug baron claims Maddie was stolen to order.”
MADDIE McCann was
a “mail-order kid” snatched by a scarfaced North African crime lord,
acc-ording to explosive new claims revealed today.
Police are now
hunting an Algerian mafia boss who allegedly bragged to British
associates in Portugal just weeks after the child’s disappearance.
He told them he
had snatched Madeleine in a £100,000 “steal-to- order” kidnap plot.
And the Daily
Star Sunday can reveal that police are set to quiz two jailed
British gangsters believed to have heard his shock claims.
After a tip-off
from underworld sources, detectives want to quiz Liverpool drug
Paul Bennett, 45 – behind bars
for perverting justice after going on the run for eight years in the
They are also
keen to talk to James Neil, 40, a business partner of Bennett and an
associate of caged Notts drug baron
Both men and our
source – who is also a top-level gangster – were running a lucrative
entertainment protection racket in Portugal.
Algerian, who went by the names Younis and Tariq and was staying in
Albufeira, allegedly tried to muscle in with his Moroccan-based mob.
Our source, who
was based just 15 minutes from the Praia da Luz resort from where
two-year-old Maddie was abducted in May 2007, said: “This fella
heard what Bennett was doing and wanted a slice.
“He was a nasty
piece of work – a heavy-hitter drug dealer who also talked about
“The kids were
nicked to order – snatched and delivered to wealthy people for big
Jamie thought they could negotiate with this guy but he was just
looking at them thinking that they were a couple of big, roast
chickens and he was going to gobble the lot up.
“In one meeting,
before Maddie vanished, the Algerian said he’d taken kids from other
parts of Europe and sold them on to rich families in Morocco.
“After Maddie was
gone, we had another business meeting and he just came right out
with it and said he and his team had done Maddie.
said Maddie had been taken away by ferry and joked about mail-order
“I don’t think he
was bothered whether she was sold to paedophiles or just a family.
“He was only
interested in the money. It was around 100 grand.”
The Algerian –
black, with cropped hair and facial scars – is “known to police in
Last night a
police spokesman in Leicestershire where the McCanns live, said: “We
have no comment to make