MADELEINE McCann’s parents are being bombarded with hate mail after the probe into their missing daughter was given an extra £300,000 in funding.
Kate and Gerry have branded their online tormenters “despicable” after being trolled over the extension of the 11.75m hunt to find their missing daughter.
Scotland Yard was given the fresh funding as hope grows detectives may finally be able to solve how Maddie vanished from her family’s holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal, in May 2007.
An official campaign website, set up to help find Maddie and endorsed by her parents, monitors and usually ignores the taunts.
But in a rare move the digitial co-ordinator, a close pal of the McCann’s, has hit back at the trolls.
In a stern warning she posted today: “Ha ha, so funny to play games on a missing child’s page. You play these despicable games, you will be banned.”
“I know we should ignore and we usually do. This is but a small sample of what we have to deal with from people on hate pages conspiring to disrupt our page.
“Please do not send these hateful people private messages. We are all better than these despicable people. Apparently, they can harass and torment an innocent family, but are crying because people are calling them out on their awful behaviour.”
A family pal added: “Kate and Gerry are angry and upset that people continue to spout malicious lies against them. Every time a positive story appears the trolls kick in with even more abuse. It’s been going on for more than 12 years
The Sun Online revealed last week that Scotland Yard had been given a fresh sum of £300,000 which gives the family renewed hope.
The couple’s spokesperson Clarence Mitchell said: “Kate and Gerry have expressed their gratitude to the police for all the work they have done and continue to do in the search for their daughter.
“They are greatly encouraged that the Metropolitan Police still believe there is active work left to be done and they remain incredibly grateful to the Home Office for providing an extra budget for the investigation.
“It shows that officers are still doing everything they can to get a resolution after all this time. And it gives them hope that one day they may finally find out what happened to Madeleine.”
Maddie’s heartbroken parents received a torrent of abuse back in March when streaming giant Netflix released a controversial documentary re-examining the facts of their daughter’s disappearance.
The McCann’s refused to take part in the programme saying it would “do absolutely nothing” to help the worldwide search to find her and could even hinder it.
Kate and Gerry have over the years been targeted by trolls – many sending hate messages at significant times when more funding from the public purse has been announced.
Last month, The Sun revealed a serial child killer dubbed the “masked man” has emerged as a key suspect in the search for Maddie.
German paedophile Martin Ney, 48, was jailed for life in 2012 for abducting and murdering three children, and sexually abusing dozens more.
Ney looks like a photofit of a man seen acting suspiciously before Madeleine vanished from her Portuguese holiday apartment 12 years ago.