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Convicted sex offender to front BBC youth show, Paisley claims

Ian Paisley has claimed a convicted sex offender recently released from jail has been appointed to front a BBC youth talent show

THE BBC has hired a convicted sex offender recently released from jail to host a children's talent show, Ian Paisley has claimed.

The DUP politician made the allegation in the Commons yesterday, claiming that the unnamed presenter will "front a prime-time youth talent show on the BBC".

The North Antrim MP, the party's culture, media, and sport spokesman, criticised the corporation for failing to learn from the "mistakes of the past".

Speaking to Culture Secretary John Whittingdale, Mr Paisley said: "The BBC promised us that they were going to learn from the mistakes of the past.

"Have you had any opportunity to assess or question the logic of those BBC bosses who have decided to appoint a recently released from jail sex offender to front a prime-time youth talent show on the BBC?

"What were they thinking in that appointment?"

Mr Whittingdale urged him to express his concerns directly to the BBC.

"I hear what you say," he said.

"It is of course a matter of editorial judgment for the BBC but obviously the BBC has a duty to set an example and behave responsibly and I would simply say that I'm sure that the senior editorial management of the BBC will have heard what you have said, and I'd encourage you - if you have concerns - to express them directly to the BBC."

It remained unclear last night if the show has any connection to Northern Ireland. The BBC said it had no comment to make on the allegations.

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