Woman Claiming To Be Madeleine McCann Drops New DNA Bombshell

The woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann has now dropped a new DNA bombshell. 
Credit: Alamy & Julia Wendell

The woman claiming to be Madeleine McCann has just dropped a new DNA bombshell. 

Three-year-old Madeleine mysteriously vanished from her holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, 17 years ago and her case remains unsolved to this day.

Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry, have vowed to keep searching for their daughter until they find answers.

On the 17th anniversary of her disappearance, her family took to social media and shared a heartbreaking update.

Kate and Gerry McCann.
Kate and Gerry McCann didn’t appear at their daughter’s 17th vigil. Credit: Alamy

Kate and Gerry said on the Find Madeleine website: “It’s 17 years since Madeleine was taken from us.

“It’s hard to even say that number without shaking our heads in disbelief.

“Whilst we are fortunate in many ways and able to live a relatively normal and enjoyable life now, the ‘living in limbo’ is still very unsettling. And the absence still aches.”

Kate and Gerry were not present at the recent prayer vigil in honour of their child.

But the woman claiming to be their missing daughter was…

Madeleine McCann
Madeleine McCann has been missing for 17 years. Credit: Alamy

Julia Wendell, who also goes by the name Julia Wandelt, made headlines last year when she took to social media and alleged she was the missing girl.

The 22-year-old detailed in many posts why she believed she could be Madeleine – she has the same rare eye abnormality known as coloboma – it’s where a part of the tissue that makes up the eye is missing.

Wendell even appeared on Dr. Phil, where she recalled one of her earliest memories: “It was the beach and water, like sea or ocean, and there were turtles and children…

“And I remembered light-coloured buildings, like white or very light colours, sunlight on these buildings.”

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Following the viral attention, Wendell would say she regretted the false claim, insisting she never meant to hurt anyone.

She told the BBC: “I never meant to hurt anyone – including [the] McCanns. I really wanted to know who I am.”

Wendell added that she regretted the social media profile claiming to be Madeleine too, commenting: “I would never go on social media. It can destroy you.”

She told the BBC that she had the right to question who she really was and she believed she could help the McCanns find their missing daughter.

However, it appears that Wendell has backtracked on these words – she was reported to be at Madeleine’s vigil.

Julia Wendell
Julia Wendell claimed to be Madeleine McCann and even appeared on Dr. Phil. Credit: CBS

The 22-year-old reportedly travelled from Poland to attend. It’s believed she wanted to speak to Kate and Gerry.

Accompanied by a friend, Wendell apparently clutched a letter she wanted to show Madeleine’s parents – she is said to have been ‘disappointed’ by their snub.

Following the service, Wendell claimed (via Metro): “I am Madeleine McCann. I have never stopped believing it and I have come here because I want to ask Kate and Gerry to do a DNA test.

“They haven’t done one to prove I am not their daughter.”

She added: “No, I am not crazy. I am not a liar.”

Madeleine McCann
A further grant into the investigation of Madeleine McCann’s disappearance has been announced. Credit: Alamy

This comes after Wendell’s DNA results disproved she was Madeleine last year.

It actually found that the 22-year-old is from Poland, with some Lithuanian and Romanian heritage, as per the Mirror.

Amid the 17th anniversary of Madeleine’s disappearance, it has been announced that a further £192,000 has been granted by the Home Office for the investigation into the girl’s disappearance, per ITV.

The Metropolitan Police is said to have already spent £13.2 million as of March 2024 investigating the high-profile case.

The prime suspect in Madeleine’s case, known only as Christian B, is currently on trial in Germany charged with unrelated s** offences, which were allegedly committed in Portugal between 2000 and 2017.

He is currently serving a seven-year prison sentence in Germany for the r*** of an elderly woman in 2005.

Christian B has denied all the charges against him and any involvement in Madeleine’s disappearance.

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Written by Aimee Walker

Aimee is a senior content editor at IGV who specialises in finding the best original stories, trending topics and entertainment news. She graduated from Birmingham City University with a degree in Media and Communications.