UK & World News
Madeleine Lookalike Sends DNA Sample To Police
A New Zealand girl repeatedly mistaken for missing Madeleine McCann has given police a sample of her DNA which will be sent to Scotland Yard.
The girl, who has not been named, is understood to have a similar eye defect to Madeleine, prompting members of the public to believe she is the missing child.
The DNA sample is a conclusive way of proving her identity, said Detective Senior Sergeant Kallum Croudis of Dunedin Police.
"The results of this process will not be known for some time," he told New Zealand newspaper The Southland Times.
On New Year's Eve police launched a five-day investigation when a retailer became suspicious of a man and a young girl, who bore a resemblance to Madeleine.
However, they said they were "absolutely satisfied" she was not Madeleine, and it was not the first time she had been mistaken for the missing girl.
Madeleine was nearly four when she vanished from her family's Portuguese holiday apartment in Praia da Luz in 2007 as her parents dined at a nearby restaurant with friends.
Madeleine's parents, Gerry and Kate McCann, have never abandoned their high-profile campaign to find their eldest daughter, who would now be nine.
Sightings have also been reported in Sweden, Belgium and Australia.
It is not the first time a child has been DNA-tested in relation to the case of the missing British girl.
In 2011, a young girl spotted in India with a Belgian man and French woman was tested and was also found not to be Madeleine.