THE hair is
longer, the face less “puppy fat” chubby and the mouth and nose
slightly wider but those innocent wide eyes are unmistakable.
This is how
experts believe Madeleine McCann might look today, almost two
years after she went missing.
remarkable image was created for the Sunday Express by forensic
computer specialist Jovey Mae Hayes, using techniques she has
employed in scores of kidnapping and missing persons cases for
the FBI and police in America.
vanished on Thursday, May 3, 2007, just days before her fourth
birthday, while on a family holiday in Praia da Luz, Portugal.
appearance would have altered significantly, with a two-year
growth spurt, according to Ms Hayes.
Michigan-based company Age Progression spent hours studying the
“missing poster” of Madeleine as well as photos of her parents
Kate and Gerry to create the image.
are to appear on a one-hour television special in the US with
Oprah Winfrey, whose team is getting its own image from the
National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children in Washington
on Madeleine’s striking resemblance to her mother, Ms Hayes
said: “That resemblance will almost certainly grow stronger as
she gets older.
“She has her
mother’s cheeks and chin. She is at an age where the structure
of her face is discernibly changing. This will give it a
slightly longer appearance, with less of the chubbiness of two
years ago. Her cheeks and mouth will, however, look fuller, with
teeth –coming through.
also, will appear wider. The cartilage growing will possibly
make her slightly ‘gummier’.
“Her hair, if
allowed to grow naturally, would be very noticeably longer. This
would make her face appear even longer and possibly contribute
to the illusion that her eyes are smaller.
“There is a
slight two-tone pigment–ation in her right eye, which, from her
photo, looks blue/brown. Sometimes this pigmentation issue can
vanish with age but some people, like singer David Bowie for
example, retain it all their lives.”
kidnappers try to alter their victims’ appearance during the
intense, early days of a search.
Madeleine’s case, the most logical step would have been to cut
short her long blonde hair and dye it dark.
But after all
this time the kidnapper may feel safe enough now to allow her a
Sunday Express image will be followed by Oprah unveiling fresh
clues during her TV special.
unearthed in Portuguese police files will be revealed during the
The new clues
were found by lawyers who spent eight months sifting through
volumes of legal documents.
specialist Gerry, 40, and GP Kate, 41, will be interviewed by
Oprah in front of a –studio audience.
the McCanns at home in Rothley, Leicestershire, with Sean and
Amelie, who bears a striking resemblance to her sister at the
same age, will also be shown.
Gerry are not being paid for the interview.
reconstruction of Madeleine’s disappearance will be shown on
Channel 4 on May 7.
said she created her image of Maddie with an enigmatic hint of a
smile, adding: “Even in the worst possible circumstances, it
would be impossible to imagine that her life today is totally
bereft of even slight happiness.
least, may be of some comfort to her loved ones.”