Huw Edwards named as BBC presenter suspended over sexual images claim

Huw Edwards in the BBC News studio

Huw Edwards has been named as the BBC presenter at the centre of an ongoing scandal, with his wife confirming he has been hospitalised.

Edwards’ wife, Vicky Flind, issued a statement on his behalf on Wednesday (12 July).

She said that Edwards is currently in hospital seeking treatment for his mental health, following his “well documented” struggles with “severe depression”.

The Metropolitan Police has also announced that after assessment, it does not believe any crime has been committed by the BBC presenter.

Flind said: “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. 

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“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.”

The BBC said: “We have seen the statement from the police confirming they have completed their assessment and are not taking further action. We’re grateful to them for completing this work at speed.

“The police had previously asked us to pause our fact finding investigations and we will now move forward with that work, ensuring due process and a thorough assessment of the facts, whilst continuing to be mindful of our duty of care to all involved.”

BBC suspended Huw Edwards after The Sun published allegations

The BBC confirmed on Sunday (9 July) that it had suspended a male presenter, now known to be Huw Edwards, following since-undermined allegations he had paid a young person £35,000 over a three-year period for nude images.

The Sun broke the story on Friday (7 July), when it ran an interview with the young person’s mother. She claimed the money funded a debilitating addiction to crack cocaine, and that the transactions began when her child, now 20, was aged 17.

The young person, via a lawyer, subsequently called the story “rubbish”.

The BBC has confirmed that it became aware of a complaint about its presenter in May.

However, it allowed the presenter to remain on air until “new allegations… of a different nature” emerged on 6 July, the day before The Sun broke the story.

According to Flind, Edwards was informed of the allegations on Thursday.

Since then, three more people have come forward with allegations

One told BBC News they connected with the presenter on a dating app, and received abusive messages after suggesting they could name him online. Another told The Sun they had also received payment for explicit photos. PinkNews has not seen any of the evidence shared with either outlet.

The BBC and the media had, until now, declined to name the presenter, prompting intense speculation.

Rylan Clark and Gary Lineker were both forced to deny their involvement in the scandal following baseless claims on social media. BBC Radio 5 Live host Nicky Campbell opened his Monday morning show by saying it had been a “distressing weekend … for me and others falsely named”.

“Today, I’m having further conversations with the police in terms of malicious communications and with lawyers in terms of defamation,” he added.

Huw Edwards is one of the BBC’s most prominent news reporters, having served as lead anchor for its flagship News At Ten since 2003.

The Welsh journalist has led coverage of major royal events including the funerals of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, the coronation of King Charles and the weddings of the Prince and Princess of Wales and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

In 2019 he became the BBC’s lead host for general election coverage, succeeding David Dimbleby.

Edwards and Flind, a producer on ITV’s Peston, have five children together.

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