Royal Hoax DJs Escape Criminal Charges
The embattled Australian radio hosts who pranked the hospital treating pregnant Kate Middleton just days before the nurse who answered the hoax call, Jacintha Saldanha, committed suicide will not face criminal charges, Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) officials announced on Friday.
“Having carefully reviewed the evidence currently available we have concluded that there is no evidence to support a charge of manslaughter,” said Malcolm McHaffie, Deputy Head of Special Crime at CPS, according to The Guardian. “Although there is some evidence to warrant further investigation of [other] offenses, no further investigation is required because any potential prosecution would not be in the public interest.”
For over a month, British prosecutors have been deciding whether to bring charges against 2Day FM radio hosts Michael Christian and Mel Greig in connection the suicide of Jacintha Saldanha, 46, one of the nurses on hand at King Edward VII Hospital while Prince William’s expectant wife was was being treated for acute morning sickness in early December.
Saldanha transferred the call from the DJs pretending to be Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles to the ward where the Duchess of Cambridge was receiving treatment. Another nurse gave them details of her condition. Just three days later, on Dec. 7, Indian-born Saldanha, 46, a mother-of-two, was found hanged in her hospital lodgings in London.
apparent suicide notes, the late nurse reportedly accused Greig and Christian for her taking her own life, according to the U.K.’s Daily Mail. Saldanha also took aim at the senior management at London’s King Edward VII hospital for their actions during the aftermath of the hoax, refuting initial statements that the staff had been supportive throughout the controversy.
After coming under fire following Saldanha’s death, the DJs remain on leave from 2Day FM, where their “Hot 30″ program — on which they hosted the hoax — has been formerly canceled. As they were widely condemned in the weeks following the controversy, Greig and Christian admitted they were “shattered, gutted (and) heartbroken” during a televised interview with the Nine Network in Australia. “There’s not a minute that goes by where we don’t think about her family and what they must be going through,” Greig said on the program A Current Affair. “The thought we may have played a part in that is gut-wrenching.”
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