BBC News has defended ignoring the Telford Abuse scandal last week and said that the Russia spy story was more important.
The Beeb received HUNDREDS of complaints about the corporation ignoring Telford and James Stephenson, who is the Editor of BBC News appeared on the BBC’s NewsWatch programme and said that because of a “busy news period” relating to the Russian spy poisoning and the death of Stephen Hawkins, the story was forced down their agenda.
“So, there was a story on the website on Monday and that was on the England index. There were various developments in the story as the week has gone on. I’m sure you’ve seen and the viewers have seen how the story has developed.” Said Stephenson.
He also defended that the BBC took until Wednesday last week to air a report on Television about the events in Telford and said that “We had a breif report on BBC News at Ten on Tuesday” That was, in fact, a 15-second mention.
FACT CHECK: The BBC did not put the story on their England index until it was found that the BBC was excluding the story from the England Index and the Shropshire index. They also hid the story between a story about Crufts and Council Tax.
His excuse for ignoring Telford was that ONE Russian was more important than ONE THOUSAND girls being raped and killed by Muslim men.
“It’s probably worth saying, to address your point directly, that we’re in the middle of this huge spy drama and scandal, the poisoning scandal in Salisbury, and that’s consumed a huge amount of our airtime, as has the death of Ken Dodd, and then later in the week Stephen Hawking.” Said Stephenson.
Stephenson even suggested that the Sunday Mirror story had holes in it and said: “The initial suggestion was that possibly 1,000 victims, and that was based not on hard information, but on an extrapolation based on work with an academic.”
When Stephenson was questioned about the criticism of the BBC’s coverage of Pakistani Muslim grooming gangs, in general, he said: “No, I think we are doing the right thing, and I think we are very determined to get to these terrible and dark and difficult stories.”