A Polish woman who made headlines earlier this year by claiming to be Madeleine McCann has been reported to the police over allegations of explicit images of children found on her phone.
Julia Wandelt, who gained attention on Instagram for her assertion that she is the British girl who went missing in Praia da Luz in 2007, has since taken a DNA test that proved she is not the missing Brit. However, she still maintains that she could be Madeleine.
Reports emerged on Tuesday that police had seized Wandelt’s phone. It has now been revealed that Dr. Fia Johnson, a private investigator and self-titled “Persian medium” who has been representing Wandelt, filed a report alleging that a phone left behind in California following the DNA test appeared to contain explicit images of children. Dr. Johnson stated, “Police are taking this very seriously and have assured me that a full investigation will be done.” She further added that Orange County police have informed her that the phone would be handed over to law enforcement in Germany and Poland.
Wandelt, however, denies the claims and stated that she has already spoken to police in Poland about the issue. She told The Sun, “I didn’t have child p*rnography on my phone. I am not a paedophile. I am a victim of a paedophile.” It has been reported that Wandelt’s phone was seized by police as part of a search and seizure, and that the 21-year-old had voluntarily handed it over.
The case has now sparked a global probe, with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department contacting Polish police for further investigation. Department Spokesman Sergeant Mike Woodroof told RadarOnline.com, “We are not going to make any comments about the case. Our investigation is taking a deep look into it, and we’re going to let them do their investigative duties and then from that point let the judicial system take over – if it needs to.”
Since returning to Poland, Wandelt has stated that she plans to take another DNA test, as she does not believe the outcome of the first test, which suggested that she was mostly of Polish heritage with some Lithuanian and Russian ancestry. When she first announced her claim to be Madeleine, Wandelt posted evidence on social media that included freckles on her leg, an eye defect, and missing pages from her medical records. She has also claimed that she was abused by someone who resembles a suspect in Madeleine’s disappearance, and that she has no records from her childhood.
However, Polish police have disputed Wandelt’s claims, and her parents have repeatedly asked her to stop making them, stating that she is unwell. Last week, Wandelt issued a 17-page statement apologising to the McCanns, where she also stated that she may still be the missing girl. She claimed that she never explicitly said she was Madeleine, but rather that she believed she was. She also apologised for creating an Instagram account with the nickname “I Am Madeleine McCann” and expressed regret for not phrasing it as “Am I?” instead.