Woman who claimed she was Madeleine McCann launches fundraising drive after DNA tests proved she was not missing girl

11 April 2023, 13:02 | Updated: 11 April 2023, 13:20

Julia Wendell (L) who thought she was Madeleine McCann (inset) has launched a fundraiser after staying with Dr Fia Johansson (r)
Julia Wendell (L) who thought she was Madeleine McCann (inset) has launched a fundraiser after staying with Dr Fia Johansson (r). Picture: social media/alamy

By StephenRigley

The woman who claimed she was Madeleine McCann has launched a fundraising drive to pay for a lawyer and therapy sessions after DNA tests prove she was not the missing girl.

Julia Wendell, 21, has made a "shameful" plea to her followers to help her "get back on her feet" after returning to her native Poland after staying with US private and celebrity psychic Dr Fia Johansson.

Sharing a screenshot of the fundraiser to her Instagram account, Julia wrote: "I feel so shameful for asking you for this kind of help but I need to find a good lawyer, therapist.

"I really need your help but if you don't want to help I will understand. I created this fundraiser because many kind people wrote me that I should do this because it's a possibility for me to pay for lawyer and therapy.

"Thank you and please, don't be rude I always refused taking money but I know that many of you want to help me."

Julia Wandell
Julia Wandell. Picture: social media

Read More: Mother of fake Madeleine McCann 'mortified' over ‘fresh grief’ for Gerry and Kate

Read More: 'She's trying to scare me': Woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann slams private investigator who 'never wanted to help'

Her fundraiser has currently raised €‎621.

Julia has claimed that she was "coerced" into a trip to the United States and "isolated" from those around her.

She said now she is home she needs help to return to a "normal life" saying "I need to get back on my feet, I need to be able to get myself to a place where I can return to the work force and thrive in the career I choose. In order to do that I need support around me such as lawyers and professionals."

Julia made headlines when she claimed to be Madeleine, who vanished on holiday in Portugal in 2007.Julia believed she was the missing child, but underwent DNA tests that proved she is “absolutely 100 per cent from Poland.”

Dr Fia Johansson
Dr Fia Johansson. Picture: social media
Madeleine McCann who went missing in 2007
Madeleine McCann who went missing in 2007. Picture: Alamy

Read More: Madeleine McCann's parents hit back after DNA tests prove Polish woman isn't their missing daughter

Read More: Woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann receives DNA test results - with full heritage revealed

Private investigator and celebrity medium Dr Johansson took her to California after she received death threats in Poland. She had been given power of attorney over the 21-year-old and appeared alongside her on US talk show Dr Phil.

Dr Johansson and Julia have been locked in a war of words since the DNA results were published.

Madeleine vanished on a family holiday to Portugal in 2007 aged three.

Scotland Yard cops investigating what happened are set to be given another £300,000 to keep the case going.

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