Australia royal radio hoaxer back on air

2013-02-11 10:02
Michael Christian. (Southern Cross Austereo, AFP)

Michael Christian. (Southern Cross Austereo, AFP)

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Sydney - One of the Australian radio hosts at the centre of a royal hoax call controversy in which a nurse was found hanged returned to the airwaves on Monday.

Michael Christian, with Mel Greig, made the phone call to London's King Edward VII Hospital in December pretending to be Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles inquiring about the health of Prince William's pregnant wife Catherine.

Christian resumed work with Austereo station Fox FM in Melbourne.

"We are happy to have Michael back on air," said Austereo chief Rhys Holleran. "We have always supported our talent returning to work when appropriate and today marks that occasion for MC.

"We look forward to welcoming Mel Greig back when the time is right."

Earlier this month British prosecutors said the two Australian DJs would not face charges over the hoax call.

Global headlines

Christian and Greig's prank saw unsuspecting nurse Jacintha Saldanha put their call through to a nurse treating Catherine, resulting in details of her recovery from morning sickness being revealed on air.

The hoax made global headlines and Indian-born Saldanha was found hanged three days later, triggering a major backlash against the radio network and the hosts.

The Australian presenters' show was axed after the death and the pair appeared tearfully on national television to describe their devastation that their hoax could have contributed to Saldanha's death.

"If we played any involvement in her death then we're very sorry for that," Christian said late last year. Greig has not yet returned to work.

A British inquest found no suspicious circumstances over the death of Saldanha, a mother of two.

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