A message circulating rapidly on Facebook claims that a girl found in New Zealand has been reported as being identical in appearance to missing British child Madeleine McCann. According to the message, which circulates in the form of a graphic that includes images of Madeleine, DNA testing is being carried out on the New Zealand girl in the chance that she really is the missing British child.
The nearly six-year search for Madeleine McCann must continue as DNA tests proved that a New Zealand lookalike is not long missing British girl.
McCann was 3 years old when she vanished during a family vacation in Portugal in 2007. Her parents returned from eating in a tapas restaurant with friends to their Praia da Luz rental to discover their daughter was gone.
The New Zealand girl was mistaken twice for McCann last year. On New Year's Eve, a retailer became suspicious that the child shopping with her father might be McCann, the Daily Mail reported.
A Fairfax NZ News article from the same date, further notes:
Some recipients of the above message have mistakenly concluded that the second picture depicts Madeleine's New Zealand lookalike. However, this is not the case. The picture is a computer generated image that shows what Madeleine may look like now at age 9 and was released by the police to the media in 2012.
A DNA sample has confirmed that a girl mistaken as missing British girl Madeleine McCann on New Year's Eve in Queenstown was not Madeleine.
Southern police sent the DNA profile of the girl to British police carrying out a review of Madeleine's disappearance.
Madeleine was last seen at the Ocean Club complex in Praia da Luz, Portugal, in 2007 just before her fourth birthday.
At the time of the mistaken Queenstown New Year's Eve sighting, thorough inquiries had been made and investigators had been completely satisfied the girl was not Madeleine, police said.
Last updated: April 16, 2013
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