THE official Find Madeleine Campaign Facebook page has been taken off line after being inundated with trolls.
In a distressing post shared to its followers, the administrator of the page wrote they needed to “take a break” from the online world, with trolls and false stories “taking a toll” in the search for Madeleine McCann.
The official Find Madeleine Campaign is endorsed by Kate and heart doctor husband Gerry McCann. All posts by the site’s un-named web chief, a mum who runs the site with a group of fellow supporters, are approved by the couple.
But the distressed webmaster appears to have posted a message on the page before pulling it down, writing: “Our page isn’t gone, just unpublished for a few days.
“Need to take a break and clear my head.”
Gerry and Kate McCann haven’t given up the search for their daughter
The post then added: “The trolls and the media encouraging them with false stories are taking a toll o n my mental health. Be back in a few days.”
It is not clear if there was a specific incident that sparked the Facebook page to be pulled.
It is not the first time that the Facebook page has had to be pulled down, with the Sun Online revealing that it was temporarily closed down after a surge of false “leads” flooded the website three months ago.
Maddie’s heartbroken parents were left “distressed” at sick gifts being offered for sale online, including T-shirts for the fictitious “McCann’s Gym,” featuring the slogan “Unfit for parents.”
At the time the Webmaster posted: “Some of you may have noticed our page not being available these past few days. Due to an increase of fabricated so called ‘leads’, I’ve been turning the page off to keep people from posting/spreading false information.
“It’s imperative the public keep looking for Madeleine, but we need to make sure false information is not being given over true leads.”
A McCann source said: “It’s upsetting and distressing for Kate and Gerry and they have advised the website organisers to be vigilant and act if anything inappropriate is posted.”
It comes after Kate and husband Gerry’s hasty decision 17 months ago to shut down an online Twitter account after being abused by “toxic” supporters, including some followers of tragic Ben Needham’s family.
It was revealed earlier this month that Madeleine McCann’s parents were hit by 150 vile tweets a day from online trolls.
They were earlier forced to hit back at a foul-mouthed Twitter rant by Marco Pierre White Junior, slamming his “unjustified” taunts.
Interest in Maddie’s case has increased in the past couple of months as the agonising 10th anniversary milestone of her disappearance nears.
The three-year-old had vanished from a holiday apartment in Portugal’s Praia da Luz in May 2007 while her parents were dining nearby with pals.
The couple have since been forced to confront rumours around their daughter’s disappearance, with the couple vowing to fight “tooth and nail” if they are ever prosecuted over leaving their kids alone.
Madeleine vanished on May 3, 2007, when her family, from Leicestershire, were holidaying in the Algarve.
Parents Gerry and Kate left their three children – including toddler twins Sean and Amelie – sleeping in their apartment while they dined at a nearby tapas bar.
When Kate returned to check on the kids at around 10pm that evening she discovered that Maddie was not in her bed and was missing.
But the search has been mired in controversy, with parents of other missing children criticising the attention heaped on the little girl and not on others.
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