Royal hoax DJs 'unlikely to face charges'

  • AFP
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FM presenters Mel Greig (R) and Michael Christian.Photo: AFP
FM presenters Mel Greig (R) and Michael Christian.Photo: AFP

Two Australian DJs who made a hoax call to a hospital treating Prince William's pregnant wife Catherine are unlikely to face prosecution, police said Friday.

Indian-born nurse Jacintha Saldanha was found dead three days after transferring the call to a colleague this month at a London hospital who divulged details about Kate's recovery from severe morning sickness.

Britain's Scotland Yard sent a file to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to decide whether to pursue charges against 2Day FM presenters Mel Greig and Michael Christian.

But New South Wales state Deputy Police Commissioner Nick Kaldas said Scotland Yard had not asked for any further information or to interview the two hosts, who made tearful apologies on television.

"Nor do we expect there to be any requests," he was quoted as saying by News Limited newspapers, in comments confirmed by police officials.

"There was some initial contact after the death of Jacintha Saldanha but not a lot since and because of the passage of time we believe it is unlikely any charges will be laid."

In England, the CPS is responsible for deciding whether charges will proceed in criminal cases, while police are responsible for investigating and collecting evidence.

At the nurse's recent funeral in India, her widower Benedict Barboza and the couple's two teenage children said British police were investigating the tragedy "and they have assured us of a full and fair investigation".

Greig and Christian, who have received death threats, posed as Queen Elizabeth II and William's father Prince Charles during the prank call and obtained private details of Kate's medical condition.

The station has cancelled the DJs' show, suspended prank calls and pledged at least Aus$500,000 (US$520,000) to help the grieving family.

Australia's media watchdog has also opened an investigation into the call.AFP



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