Much and more has been said over the past few days about the Polish woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann.
The story has now taken another twist after a private detective who led the hunt for the missing British girl carried out an analysis which he says gives a definitive answer to the possibility.
Earlier this week, 21-year-old Julia Wendell went viral after starting an Instagram account through which she asserted that she was Madeleine, the girl whose sudden disappearance from a holiday apartment in Portugal in 2007 sparked an international manhunt. The case has yet to be conclusively solved, which is perhaps why Wendell’s claim has garnered so much traction online.
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Through a series of photo and video posts, Wendell says she can prove that she is Madeleine, offering a deal of “evidence” including physical similarities and the fact that she remembers very little of her childhood. Among said “evidence” is Wendell’s claim that she has a freckle on her leg in the same place as Madeline, as well as the rare marking in her eye.
The 21-year-old, from Poland, said she began to wonder if she was Maddie “a few months ago” after hearing something from her grandma. Maddeleine was born in May, 2003, meaning she would now be 19. Wendell says her own age (21) may be wrong.
The young woman has staunchly defended her statements since, and seeking the chance to do a DNA test to prove once and for all that she is the missing daughter of Kate and Gerry McCann. The parents, who were having dinner at a restaurant close by their holiday apartment when their daughter was taken, have not officially commented on the matter, though speculation insists that they may agree to the test as they are willing to explore all avenues.
According to the Daily Mirror, though, a private detective who worked on Maddie’s case, Francisco Marco, claims to have undertaken an analysis which proves Wendell wrong.
Speaking to Spanish network RAC1, Marco said: “I have done a biometric search and there is no resemblance to Madeleine’s features.”
Marco, who is the former director of the Metodo 3 detective agency, went on to express his disbelief that Wendell went public with her assertions before reaching out to Madeleine’s family privately.
“I can think it’s a fraud, but I can’t say without evidence,” he said.
“This girl contacted the police and no one paid attention to her, and she later opened the Instagram account where she now has thousands of followers when she had very few before.”
Offering an update on her Instagram, which at the time of writing has amassed some 1.1 million followers in a matter of days, Wendell said: “I talked with someone from Madeleine’s family and I will have a possibility to talk with Madeleine’s parents tomorrow and DNA test will be done soon.”
Backing up her claim, Wendell said she has no recollection of most of her childhood: “I mean, I don’t remember almost my entire childhood.”
In statements made to the Daily Star, Wendell said:
“I have lived a very hard life and suffered a lot of trauma, my abuser was a German paedophile who was a suspect in the Madeleine McCann investigation,” she said.
“I had not heard of this case until I started asking my parents questions about my childhood as I have little to no memory of it. The memories are all very blurry and when I have had conversations with my parents, things don’t seem to add up and they always try to change the subject.”
As per reports, the woman’s family have turned their backs on her and said she is “horrible” for giving false hope to the McCanns.
The search for Madeleine saw a dramatic revival after the naming of German prisoner Christian Brueckner as a potential suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance in 2020, and the subsequent confirmation in 2022.
As per reports, Brueckner is a prolific burglar with previous convictions for sex crimes against young girls. At the time of writing, he is in prison for the rape of a 72-year-old woman, and has been further charged with multiple sex offenses alleged to have taken place between 2000 and 2007.
My heart bleeds for the loved ones of Madeleine McCann. I only hope the case can be solved soon so that they can get some measure of closure and peace.
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