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*I’m not expecting her to emerge from the mist. I realize that title might seem a little insensitive and that’s not my intention.

Because Julia Wandelt is not it


I could be wrong but I’m 75% sure I’m not.

Over the last several months there’s been speculation that a young woman from Poland named Julia Wandelt (or Wendell or Faustyna) could be missing the Madeleine McCann.

Who is Madeleine McCann

In May 2007, three year old Madeleine was on vacation in Portugal with her parents and twin siblings. Her mother and father left her and her two year old siblings sleeping in their apartment to go to dinner, about 180 feet away. Around 10pm her mother, after having checked on the children multiple times, discovered Madeleine missing.

At one point her mother and father were suspected of covering up her accidental death after some DNA evidence was misinterpreted. Her parents were later cleared of any wrongdoing, and the girl, who would be 20 now, has never been found.

There are multiple theories as to what happened to the then three year old, most notably that a man previously convicted of abducting and murdering another child might have had something to do with her disappearance.

To be honest, there’s a lot about the case that doesn’t make a ton of sense, but that’s not why we’re here right now.

Who is Julia Wandelt

Julia Wandelt (aka Julia Wendell or Julia Faustyna) is a 21 year old Polish woman claiming that she could be the missing Madeleine McCann. She began sharing “evidence” that she was McCann on her YouTube, Facebook, and Tik Tok accounts. Those accounts have since been deleted as she has faced criticism and threats.

She began with a plea to the parents of Madeleine, asking for DNA testing and to get in contact with them. As far as I know she has not spoken to them. Wandelt had traveled to the United States with a woman named Dr Fia Johansson a private investigator and self professed medium.

Why tho?

Why is it Julia Wandelt believes she is Madeleine McCann?

Madeleine McCann had a very distinctive eye defect, affecting the appearance of her iris and pupil. this condition is fairly rare, only affecting about one in ten thousand people. The unique characteristic was quite obvious in images that circulated of the little girl after she went missing.

This defect, called a coloboma, which Wandelt had, is one of the reasons why people might think she is McCann.

Coloboma in Madeline McCann’s eye. Image.
Julia Wandelt (left) Madeleine McCann (right) Image

There are a number of other pieces of “evidence” given as to why she might be the lost little girl, including other facial features.

Why do I think Julia Wandelt is not Madeline McCann?

I think, with close to 8 billion people on earth, the chances that two people look eerily similar, enough that one might be the older version of a missing person, is highly likely. There are tiktok videos that people stitch asking the original poster who their parents are. We all have a doppelgänger somewhere.

One of the things that tells me that it is unlikely that Wandelt is McCann all grown up is the placement of that rare condition that causes the deformation of the pupil. Yes, it is rare, but that doesn’t mean that two different people can’t have it.

And if you look at images comparing their faces, Wandelt’s defect appears to be straight, while McCann’s radiates away from the center of the eye or the pupil, at an angle. McCann’s coloboma is also more distinct. I’ve found no pictures of Wandelt that show it as prominent as McCann’s.

Based on my limited knowledge of facial features, there seem to be discrepancies between the two that might show differences as opposed to similarities. Wandelt’s fuller lip, brow bones, jawline, and other features just do not scream to me, “I’m a grown up McCann.”

There is also the fact that Wandelt and this Johansson woman decided it was important for the case to travel to Los Angeles, California. In the United States. One continent that is NOT a part of the case. If she wanted her DNA compared to that of McCann, would she not do so in a country closer to where she’s from or where she went missing?


I believe that Julia Wandelt had ulterior motives. I do not claim to know anything about her childhood (which she claims to not remember because she was trafficked by the same or similar looking German man believed to be involved in McCann’s disappearance) or her life at all.

I do believe in possibilities. Specifically ones that include her having made the claims initially believing they’d get little attention, and it because something bigger. In the day and age of “going viral” it’s not hard to convince people of something. Perhaps it was a hole she dug too deep and now she’s going all in?

Or perhaps she was convinced by someone *cough cough* johansson *cough cough* that she could be the missing girl, and they are looking for some sort of fame from the act, perhaps to free Wandelt from a not ideal life she was living?

Why else would they go to LA thr publicity capital of the world?

Like I said, all speculation.


Madeleine McCann is or was a human and it’s an absolute tragedy what happened to her at such a young age. But Julia Wandelt is as well, regardless of what happened to her and what is going on now. And Wandelt has apparently suffered from death threats and harassment over the whole thing.

It is wrong and inappropriate to harass or threaten anyone, regardless of the reason. Treat others the way you’d want to be treated and all that.

But I also think that the parents of McCann are not holding out any hope that Wandelt is their missing child. I think after si king, I wouldn’t blame them. But it must be hard for them to go through this ordeal. Like losing her all over again.

But I am almost certain, like 74%, that these two are not the same person. And if I’m wrong, I will eat my words.

In conclusion

While I’m sure her mother and father would be absolutely thrilled to know her child is alive, Madeleine McCann is still missing, and last I heard, presumed dead.

One can only hope that Julia Wandelt (and her would be guardian and mentor Dr Fia Johansson) is not insisting that she is the missing McCann, solely for the publicity.