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Crime News Missing Persons

Polish Woman Issues Apology To Madeleine McCann’s Parents After Claiming To Be Missing Girl

After several DNA tests concluded that Polish woman Julia Faustyna was not long-missing girl Madeleine McCann, the 21-year-old turned to social media to apologize to the McCann family.

By Kate Zincone
Madeleine McCann

The Polish woman who said she believed she could have been missing British girl Madeleine McCann has issued an apology to McCann's parents after her claim was disproven by DNA testing.

DNA evidence confirmed that Julia Faustyna, also known as Julia Wendell and Julia Wandelt, is not the missing daughter of Kate and Gerry McCann. The “@IamMadelineMcCann” Instagram account created by the 21-year-old who believed that photographic similarities indicated she might be Madeleine circulated throughout social media, the New York Post reported.  

RELATED: DNA Test Results Confirm Polish Woman Isn't Madeleine McCann

Madeleine went missing in 2007 at age 3 during a family vacation to Praia da Luz, Portugal. Her parents, who were initial suspects in her disappearance but were cleared by authorities in 2008, left her alone with her 2-year-old twin siblings while they dined at a nearby restaurant, according to previous Oxygen.com reporting.

Incarcerated German sex offender Christian Brückner became a person of interest in 2022, but has not been officially charged.  

Madeleine McCann

Faustyna sought out DNA testing, which found that her genetic roots were inconsistent with Madeleine. Tests showed that Faustyna was 100% Polish with ties to Lithuania and Russia, while Madeleine was British.

“We finally know the reality,Faustyna’s spokesperson Dr. Fia Johansson said after receiving the results. “Although it is impossible to tell for sure without the parents' DNA results on either side, the test results speak to the origins of Julia’s root.”

“It wasn’t my intention to bring sadness or any other negative emotion to anyone, especially to McCann’s family,” Faustyna noted in a 17-page social media statement on Tuesday.

Faustyna insists that she never claimed to be the missing toddler, now saying that she simply theorized that it was a possibility, the Post reported.  

“I don’t remember most of my memories, but I can remember some things and I never said that I am Madeleine McCann,” Faustyna said during an appearance on “Dr. Phil.” “It was my mistake and I know it and I apologize for that because I should use words ‘Am I Madeleine McCann?’ not ‘I Am.’”

Faustyna’s biological parents voiced their own opinions on the situation, noting in a written statement shared during the show that “it was obvious that Julia isn’t Maddie.”

They explained that Faustyna allegedly took her birth certificate, hospital records, and childhood photos, adding, “For us as a family it is obvious Julia is our daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, cousin, and step niece. We have memories, we have pictures,” according to the Post.

McCann’s parents have yet to comment on Faustyna’s claims and the DNA test results.