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Noel Clarke: Sky halts work with actor after harassment allegations

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Sky TV has “halted” its work with actor Noel Clarke after allegations of sexual harassment were made against him by a number of women.

Clarke has starred in Sky’s crime drama Bulletproof, which had a fourth series commissioned in January.

“Effective immediately, we have halted Noel Clarke’s involvement in any future Sky productions,” the broadcaster said.

The Kidulthood and Doctor Who star, 45, has said he “vehemently” denies “any sexual misconduct or wrongdoing”.

In a statement on Thursday, he said he intended to “defend myself against these false allegations”.

The Guardian newspaper reported allegations from 20 women, all of whom knew Clarke in a professional capacity.

Noel Clarke collected his outstanding contribution Bafta Award on 10 April

In its statement on Friday, Sky added: “Sky stands against all forms of sexual harassment and bullying and takes any allegations of this nature extremely seriously.”

Bulletproof’s production company Vertigo Films also said: “Effective immediately, Noel Clarke is removed from any Vertigo Films production.”

A spokesperson for the company said it had “launched an urgent investigation to find out if any [alleged incidents] apply to any Vertigo Films productions”, but that “no issues have been flagged to us”.

The actor has been on screens all week as the star of ITV surveillance drama Viewpoint. The broadcaster has not confirmed whether the final episode will be transmitted later as planned.

Clarke has also been suspended by Bafta, weeks after he received one of the British film and TV academy’s top awards. He was given the outstanding British contribution to cinema prize at a ceremony on 10 April.

In a letter sent to its members on Friday, Bafta defended its decision to go ahead with the presentation despite having received emails about Clarke’s behaviour before the ceremony.

“These were either anonymous or second or third-hand accounts via intermediaries,” it said. “No first-hand allegations were sent to us. No names, times, dates, productions or other details were ever provided.

“Had the victims gone on record as they have with The Guardian, the award would have been suspended immediately. Noel Clarke’s counsel received a legal notice to this effect. It was always very clear what our intentions would be.”

Clarke’s police drama Viewpoint is scheduled to conclude on Friday night

The organisation described the allegations as “extremely serious” and said the alleged behaviour was “contrary to Bafta’s values and everything it stands for”.

“We completely understand why the individuals were extremely fearful to identify themselves to us, and we recognise how hard it is for victims to speak up,” it said. But Bafta added that it was “an arts charity that is not in a position to properly investigate such matters”.

The academy had been criticised by figures including Stella Creasy MP, who said the situation posed “very uncomfortable questions for Bafta”.

Shadow Northern Ireland minister Alex Davies Jones said: “If Bafta gave Noel Clarke an ‘outstanding contribution award’ despite knowing about the allegations against him then there are serious questions that need answering immediately.”

SourceBBC

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