“Top Gear” host Jeremy Clarkson, who has been suspended from the BBC for allegedly punching a producer, will be summoned to a hotel in London in the next few days to explain his side of the story, the Daily Mail reports.
According to the Mail, the BBC has set up a disciplinary panel to discuss the Clarkson case. Oisin Tymon, the producer who was supposedly hit, could also be asked to give his version of the story.
Clarkson apparently took his anger out on Tymon after the TV host was served a cold platter of meat and cheese for dinner, instead of a sirloin steak, following a long day of filming last weekend in Yorkshire Dales.
Radio Times reports that the panel will be chaired by Ken McQuarrie, the current Director of BBC Scotland. In 2009, McQuarrie lead the investigation of another popular BBC programme, Newsnight, which falsely linked a Tory peer to a child abuse scandal in North Wales. Alongside McQuarrie will be Orla Tierney, a barrister who works in the BBC HR department.
According to the Mail, Clarkson will receive a summoning letter today and the investigation will proceed quickly, with the hearings set for tomorrow or Saturday.
According to the Mail, when approached yesterday at a football match about the possibility of being sacked, Clarkson responded “Well, it is coming, isn’t it?“
Clarkson’s relationship with senior executives at the BBC was strained even before the latest scandal and he was was on a “final warning.”
The Daily Mail reports that BBC director of TV, Danny Cohen, has wanted to fire Clarkson for a long time, but never proceeded because of Clarkson’s popularity.
Clarkson is currently the highest paid presenter at the BBC and it is broadcast to 214 foreign territories. Revenues from the programme are supposed to bring £150 million to the commercial arm of the BBC, according to the Telegraph.
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