Ulster-born telly star Eamonn Holmes has had thousands of pounds stolen in a burglary in Portugal — and he has slammed the local police investigation.
Sky TV’s morning anchorman had his room at a luxury hotel in the Villa Moura resort ransacked by thieves last month.
One pal said he believed Holmes lost £10,000 in the raid.
The 48-year-old, who was holidaying with his partner Ruth Langsford and his four children, was out of the room when the gang struck.
The burglars forced their way into the room before smashing the safe and making off with the money.
We understand the telly star had been playing golf with pals from Northern Ireland.
The former UTV man hit out at the Portuguese police investigation into the burglary and expressed sympathy for the parents of missing toddler Maddie McCann.
He said: “Like Kate and Gerry McCann, I’ve had dealings with the Portuguese police.
“But unlike Kate and Gerry, I was only trying to report a burglary — not the theft of my child.
“One of the things obvious to anyone dealing with the police on the Algarve is the sorry fact that no matter what you have lost, there simply isn’t enough of them to begin tracking it down.
“That may be one of the worst twists of fate in what happened to Madeleine — that tragically, she went missing in the wrong place.”
A pal of the presenter told how Holmes had been left “stunned” by the robbery.
Added the pal: “Eamonn was looking forward to his holiday and can’t believe this has happened to him.
“The only reason he brought so much cash is because he didn’t want to use his credit card every time the kids’ needed some money.
“He’s not very happy because he was staying a top quality hotel and his family could quite easily
have been in the room. It may have been an inside job and someone may have recognised him because of his role with Sky.
“It put a real dampener on his holiday.”
Police in Faro are continuing to search for the missing cash and have appealed for information.
Said a spokesman: “Police are investigating a burglary in the Villa Moura area and enquiries are continuing.”
The burglary comes after a group of teenagers from Co Down also lost thousands after they were robbed in the Vale Do Lobo resort.
The victims were forced to hand over their valuables after they were threatened by a masked man.
One of the victims, Lauren Rodgers from Holywood, spoke exclusively to Sunday Life about her terrifying experience.
She said: “We never expected anything like this to happen. It was awful.
“Not only was our dream holiday ruined but this man made off with valuables which were of sentimental value.