Huw Edwards named by wife as BBC presenter accused of paying teen for explicit photos
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The wife of Huw Edwards has named him as the BBC presenter who was suspended following claims he paid a teenager for explicit photos.
In a statement released to the PA, Vicky Flind said: “In light of the recent reporting regarding the ‘BBC Presenter’ I am making this statement on behalf of my husband Huw Edwards, after what have been five extremely difficult days for our family. I am doing this primarily out of concern for his mental well-being and to protect our children.
“Huw is suffering from serious mental health issues. As is well documented, he has been treated for severe depression in recent years. The events of the last few days have greatly worsened matters, he has suffered another serious episode and is now receiving in-patient hospital care where he’ll stay for the foreseeable future.
“Once well enough to do so, he intends to respond to the stories that have been published. To be clear Huw was first told that there were allegations being made against him last Thursday.
“In the circumstances and given Huw’s condition I would like to ask that the privacy of my family and everyone else caught up in these upsetting events is respected. I know that Huw is deeply sorry that so many colleagues have been impacted by the recent media speculation. We hope this statement will bring that to an end.”
The allegations were first reported by The Sun newspaper, with a mum claiming the well-known BBC presenter paid her child, said to have been 17 when the payments began, £35,000 in exchange for the pictures.
The teenager’s mother told The Sun she saw a picture of the presenter on her child’s phone 'sitting on a sofa in his house in his underwear'.
In response to the allegations, a BBC spokesman said: “The BBC first became aware of a complaint in May.
“New allegations were put to us on Thursday of a different nature and, in addition to our own inquiries, we have also been in touch with external authorities, in line with our protocols.
“We can also confirm a male member of staff has been suspended.
“We expect to be in a position to provide a further update in the coming days as the process continues. The BBC board will continue to be kept up to date.”
The statement added that the corporation has 'robust internal processes in place to proactively deal with such allegations'.
“This is a complex and fast-moving set of circumstances and the BBC is working as quickly as possible to establish the facts in order to properly inform appropriate next steps,” the BBC said.
“It is important that these matters are handled fairly and with care.
“We have been clear that if - at any point - new information comes to light or is provided to us, this will be acted upon appropriately and actively followed up.”
The Metropolitan Police has said that no criminal offence has been committed by the BBC presenter and no formal allegations against him have been made.
The family of the teenager were said to have complained to the BBC on 19 May, but allegedly became frustrated that the star remained on air.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues and want to speak to someone in confidence regarding the welfare of a child, contact the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000, 10am-2pm Monday to Friday. If you are a child seeking advice and support, call Childline for free on 0800 1111.