A website offering holiday discount vouchers has been caught using a photograph of Madeleine McCann to promote a £20 discount deal on trips to Portugal.
The photograph used features Madeleine just hours before her disappearance from her family’s Praia da Luz holiday apartment in 2007.
With the photo caption “Best Value”, Madeleine is seen smiling on VoucherDigg, where £20 off bookings on a minimum €400 spend at lowcostholidays.com.
Below her photograph, the page urges visitors to “Hurry up for the time is limited. Take the ones you love and enjoy your life.”
Parents Gerry and Kate McCann have branded the use of the photograph “appallingly insensitive”.
Their spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, told the Daily Star: “This is an appalling use of Madeleine’s picture and whether it is a result of hacking or a mistake it must be removed immediately.
“Kate and Gerry are fully aware of this and are horrified. We understand it had been on the website for 24 hours.”
Although VoucherDigg has not provided response to any press requests, Lawrence Hunt, Chief Operating Officer at lowcostholidays.com, said: “We have no contract with VoucherDigg to advertise their holidays and we are doing all that we can to contact the website to get this picture removed.”
It was added by Hunt that when they discovered the “vile material” on the site, all links were immediately broke to lowcostholidays.com and lawyers were contacted.
“We apologise for any distress this may of caused,” he concluded. S.M.