Crime

The family of girl claiming to be Madeleine McCann speak out

“She refuses treatment…”
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For 16 years Kate and Gerry McCann have tirelessly searched for their missing daughter, Madeleine.

Maddie was just 3 when she vanished from her bed in a holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal on the evening of May 3, 2007.

WATCH: The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann Netflix trailer

Now, in a shocking twist, a young Polish woman has come forward with ‘evidence’ to support her claim that she might be the missing British child – allegedly prompting the McCanns to agree to a DNA test.

“I think I can be Madeleine,” Julia Faustyna, who also goes by Julia Wendell and Julia Wandelt, wrote on Facebook.

“I have a defect in my eye, in the same eye, the kind of defect Madeleine had. Except that in my case it’s faded more and more every year,” she shared online.

Julia, who quickly amassed over a million Instagram followers, says she began wondering if she was Maddie “a few months ago” after hearing “something” from her grandma. She is 21 years old but believes her age could be wrong.

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Julia (pictured right) claims that she’s Madeleine (left). (Credit: Supplied)

If alive today, little Maddie would now be 19.

Insisting she has no recollection of most details from her childhood, Julia shared a series of photographs she claims proves her likeness to the little girl, as well as her parents Kate and Gerry.

“I have asked for pictures of when my mum was pregnant with me, other medical records and any pictures from my childhood and she never shows them, she just always tells me I’m crazy,” Julia wrote on Instagram.

“After all this confusion I began to do my own research, I discovered what had happened to Madeleine McCann and started to piece together the similarities we shared.

WATCH: 10 years without Madeleine: Kate and Gerry McCann speak to the BBC

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“It has been so stressful trying to get people to listen to me.”

It’s believed Julia’s claims have caught the attention of the McCanns.

Julia says a member of the McCann family has asked her to take a DNA test. This has not yet been confirmed though.

However, sources told The Sun that Julia’s allegations are distressing the McCanns.

julia
Julia is now 21 but thinks her age could be wrong (Madeleine, if alive, would be 19 now). (Credit: Supplied)

“It causes unnecessary pain for Kate and Gerry,” said the source.

“So many false claims have been made over the years and they don’t need any more.”

Former detective Francisco Marco is also not convinced by the shock claims. Francisco was hired by Kate and Gerry to lead the hunt for Maddie after her disappearance. He says Julia’s story is lacking conclusive evidence.

“Without knowing the details in depth, it doesn’t add up to me,” he told a Spanish newspaper. “I don’t think it’s her.”

WATCH: Police plea for Maddie McCann search

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Following the worldwide media attention, Julia’s family released a statement online stating they are “devastated” by her claims.

“It is obvious Julia isn’t Maddie,” they wrote, adding Julia has had numerous therapies, psychologists and psychiatrists.

“She refuses treatment, doesn’t take medicines regularly … we are devastated at the current situation.”

The McCanns are yet to issue a formal statement about the claims.

For more, pick up the latest issue of New Idea!

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