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BBC stars distance themselves from The Sun’s explicit photos story as minister hints at investigation

BBC

BBC presenters including Gary Lineker, Nicky Campbell, Rylan Clark and Jeremy Vine have moved to distance themselves from a Sun story claiming that a highly paid BBC personality paid a teenager for explicit photos.

Lineker, the BBC’s highest-paid presenter, was just one of many to take to social media distancing themselves from the story, Tweeting in his inimitable cheeky style “Hate to disappoint the haters but it’s not me.”

Twitter has become a predictably wild source of speculation since the story broke, with virtually everyone who has ever made an appearance on BBC TV or radio seemingly suggested as a likely candidate at some point on Sunday. Vine took to Twitter to dismiss his own name trending as “Lies”:

While Clarke pointed out that he’s currently in Italy and has not been relieved of any duties by the BBC:

The BBC has confirmed that it has suspended an unnamed male presenter following the allegations that he paid a teenager more than £35,000 for sexually explicit images.

BBC director-general Tim Davie said the corporation was investigating “swiftly and sensitively” into the “deeply concerning” claims following urgent talks with culture secreatry Lucy Frazer.

The Sun has not identified the alleged culprit, but claims they are a “household name” with a six-figure salary.

On Monday morning the justice secretary, Alex Chalk, urged the BBC to “get on with” its part in any investigation into claims the unnamed male presenter paid a vulnerable teenager for sexually explicit images.

Chalk said the public would “expect allegations of that nature to be dealt with very robustly and promptly”, telling Sky News that “it may be that, in the fullness of time, there will need to be an investigation about how this allegation was handled”.

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