Parents of the woman who claims to be Madeleine McCann reveal the truth behind recent viral news

By Charlie Sawyer

Published Feb 23, 2023 at 11:29 AM

Reading time: 2 minutes

There’s been an update in what’s quickly becoming the most bizarre story of 2023. A few days ago a 21-year-old Polish woman named Julia Wandelt created an Instagram page named @iammadeleinemccan and began posting frantic images and captions claiming that she was the British girl who’d gone missing in Portugal in 2007.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Help me, I need to talk with Kate and Gerry McCann (@iammadeleinemccan)

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Help me, I need to talk with Kate and Gerry McCann (@iammadeleinemccan)

As the story began to unfold we learned a number of worrying details about Wandelt, including the fact that she may have been abused as a child. Over the course of four days, the Instagram page has managed to rack up over a million followers—and the news coverage of Wandelt has skyrocketed. It’s even been confirmed that the McCann parents have agreed to do a DNA test.

More recently, following the initial upsurge, Wandelt’s account has slightly shifted in content. While the page first focused solely on posting pictures comparing her childhood face to that of Madeleines—seemingly in an attempt to convince audiences that she being truthful—it’s now become what can only be described as a promotional account for Wandelt’s spokesperson, a woman who goes by the name: Persian Medium.

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A post shared by Help me, I need to talk with Kate and Gerry McCann (@iammadeleinemccan)

In a recent video posted on the account, the medium (who’s real name is Dr Fia Johansson) states: “To everyone interested in Julia’s search for answers, please understand we are in the middle of an investigation. This is a vulnerable woman seeking answers about her identity and her life. Regardless of your opinions, she is a human being who deserves respect. When everything is done in the investigation in a few weeks, you can learn more, but more now, please respect this woman’s privacy.

It concludes: “Her background was challenging and messy. There is no need to spew hatred, judgement, and especially threats towards a person in need. This is unacceptable and needs to stop.”

When Johansson mentioned a “challenging” and “messy” background, we can assume she is referring to a recent statement released by Wandelt’s parents. 

On 22 February, relaying the message through the facebook page of Polish charity Zaginieni przed laty, Wandelt’s parents wrote: “We would like to take a stance on Julia’s case, which has spread the Internet and media in many countries in recent days. 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.”

The statement continued: “Julia also has these photos, because she took them from the family home with the birth certificate, as well as numerous hospital discharges. We always tried to understand all the situations that happened with Julia. Numerous therapies, medicines, psychologists and psychiatrists—Julia had it all guaranteed. She wasn’t left alone.”

The family go on to note that Wandelt has refused to take medication or attend treatment facilities in Poland. They also claim that she’s always “wanted to be popular” and now she’s succeeded. The family also confirms that “it’s obvious that Julia isn’t Maddie.”

SCREENSHOT did reach out to both Wandelt and her spokesperson Dr Fia Johansson for a comment.

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