Is this woman really Madeleine McCann? Latest on Julia Wendell claims and DNA test

23 March 2023, 16:12 | Updated: 6 April 2023, 12:17

Julia Wendell alongside young Madeleine McCan
Julia Wendell has made claims she could be Madeleine McCan. Picture: Instagram/Alamy

By Zoe Adams

Who is the girl claiming to be missing Madeleine McCann? And why does she believe she's her? Here's everything you need to know about Julia Wendell and her DNA test claims.

A young girl sent the internet crazy when she claimed she could be missing Madeleine McCann.

The famous case made headlines in 2007 when young Madeleine went missing, aged 3, while on holiday in Portugal with her family, including parents Kate and Gerry McCann.

Now, 21-year-old Julia Wendall from Poland, has claimed she could be that missing girl and has requested a DNA test following her troubled childhood.

Read More: Woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann says she suffered emotional breakdown after fleeing Poland due to death threats

So who is Julia Wendell? Why does she believe she's Madeleine McCann? And what's the latest with the DNA results? Here's the most recent news and updates.

Dr Fia Johansson and Julia Wendell in Instagram video
Dr Fia Johansson and Julia Wendell have been sharing many Instagram updates. Picture: Dr Fia Johansson/Instagram
Gerry and Kate McCann holding a picture of missing Madeleine
Gerry and Kate McCann have been searching for their daughter since 2007. Picture: Alamy

Read more: Woman who believes she is Madeleine McCann 'will get answers by the end of the week'

Read more: 'You can't hide anymore': Private detective challenges family of woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann

Who is the girl claiming to be Madeleine McCann?

From Poland, Julia said she began to wonder about her identity following a comment from her grandmother and because she says she was sexually abused by a man she believes was a suspect in the McCann case.

She's also identified she has moles in similar positions to that of Madeleine and also has the famous mark in her eye, similar to the missing tot.

Julia had set up an Instagram page for her claims, which gained nearly one million followers, where she listed evidence of her suspicions.

Currently, Julia is living in LA with private investigator and medium Dr Fia Johansson, who is helping her discover her true identity.

Sadly, she is also struggling with her health with a doctor stating she “has bad asthma" and "suffers lots of pain in her bones".

They added: "She is booked in for a CT and MRI scan because of the pain in her bones. Her blood work is also abnormal so my doctor here in the US is investigating whether she could have leukaemia so we are awaiting the results of that."

Madeleine McCann's parents 'welcome the news' of suspect

What's the latest with the McCann DNA test?

Julia's parents, who dismiss the claims she is Madeleine McCann are so far refusing to do a DNA.

In the latest news and speaking to RadarOnline, Dr Johansson said Julia has sent off three DNA samples for forensic analysis as well as a genetic test to establish her ancestry.

Dr Johansson said: "If the results come back that she’s British or from that area then we are going to continue our investigation into Madeleine McCann and communicate with the detectives in Portugal. We have a lot of evidence right now that shows Julia was definitely trafficked to Poland."

Dr Johansson told The Sun: "We have asked her family for a DNA test but her mother blocked her and they refused to even take our calls. We can't get a court order to force them to because there is a law against it in Poland."

Addressing the claims, Julia's family gave a statement via a Polish Missing Persons charity which said: "For us as a family it is obvious that Julia is our daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, cousin and step niece. We have memories, we have pictures.

"Julia also has these photos, because she took them from the family home with the birth certificate, as well as numerous hospital discharges. We are devastated at this current situation."

Gerry and Kate McCann are yet to comment on the claims.

Also, Ava-X, a facial recognition firm in Switzerland, say their face recognition software found that Julia is extremely unlikely to be Madeleine, giving a verdict of 90 per cent.

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