A MAN dubbed "The Locator" claims to know where Madeleine McCann was taken after her apparent abduction.
South African ex-policeman Danie Krugel, who says he has invented a device for finding missing people, believes Maddie was not taken away from the area where she was abducted.
But he rates her chances of being alive as "very slim".
Krugel has scoured Pria da Luz in Portugal and the surrounding area for clues using hi-tech equipment he developed which uses a person's DNA to track them down.
Kate and Gerry McCann are believed to have called in Mr Krugel after hearing about several of his successes in finding people in South Africa.
They gave him a piece of Maddie's hair which was found on her clothing to use with the tracking device.
The university health and safety director refused to reveal how his hi-tech methods work, but said he was currently in negotiations with companies to develop the "matter orientation system machine" which is said to use satellite technology.
But he was reluctant to talk about his four-night search in Portugal.
"I don't want to interfere with this investigation. I think that she's still in the area because the possibility that she's alive is very slim," he said.
"I gave an area to the police for them to search and to the McCanns with maps and photographs of the area."
Mr Krugel is believed to have uncovered a "forensic route" from Maddie's holiday appartment along paths and roads to a nearby beach.
"The area is walking distance from Praia da Luz. I don't want to say exactly where because I don't want to interfere with this investigation. I don't want to give anyone the chance to destroy the prints," he said.
"If I look at the area, there is a very, very slight possibility that she could be alive.
"From the piece of hair I was able to conclude that she was in the area."
But the McCanns' spokesman Clarence Mitchell said that the McCanns have not hired Mr Krugel, and said: "We cannot comment on anything that goes to the very heart of the investigation.
"However, Kate and Gerry will never rule anything out which may have a degree of credibility behind it. Therefore they will try anything if there is a genuine chance of it helping to find Madeleine."
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