A little girl dubbed to be a “blonde angel” has sparked a world-wide search for her biological parents. The little girl was taken into protective custody in Greece after she was found in a Roma camp and the people claiming to be her parents gave misleading information to police. NBC News shared the latest information on Oct. 21.
The young girl, whom authorities now believe is between five and six years old, has sparked international interest after her picture and story were picked up by media. More than 10,000 tips and inquiries have poured in regarding her true identity, but so far nothing concrete has been determined.
The blonde angel, as the Greek press has dubbed her, was called Maria by the family who had her. They have offered varying stories about how she came to be with them. Their extended family claims there was nothing at all sinister about the situation. Others aren't sure they believe that.
Authorities have determined via DNA testing that the blonde angel is not biologically related to the man and woman who claimed to be her parents. She was found during a police sweep of the neighborhood where authorities were investigating drug trafficking. The man and woman have been charged with abducting a minor, and police are trying to determine if she may be a child trafficking victim.
The couple's lawyer claims that Maria was given to the family by a poor Bulgarian woman, and that they did nothing wrong. Papers the couple had indicate they had as many as 14 children, six of whom supposedly were born to them within a 10 month period. They've been receiving about $3,800 a month in child benefits.
Many within the Roma community, often referred to as gypsies, are worried this incident will reinforce negative stereotypes many have about the community. Regardless of that issue, those following the story are anxious for the blonde angel's biological parents to be found. She is said to still be hospitalized right now, but is doing well.