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Wife names BBC veteran Huw Edwards as man behind sex images row

BBC’s veteran news anchor, Huw Edwards.

BBC’s veteran news anchor, Huw Edwards, was named by his wife on Wednesday as the person who was suspended by the UK’s top media organisation following allegations over payments for sexually explicit images.

Edward’s has covered some of the biggest stories in the UK in recent years, including the death of Queen Elizabeth II, royal weddings, the country’s elections and the 2012 Summer Olympics.

Edwards’ wife, Vicky Flind, said he was being treated in hospital for “serious mental health issues,” and she was issuing the statement on his behalf after days of speculation “primarily out of concern for his mental well-being and to protect our children,” BBC News reported.

The statement came soon after London’s Metropolitan Police said that there was no indication that a criminal offense had been committed.

“Huw is suffering from serious mental health issues. As is well documented, he has been treated for severe depression in recent years,” Flind said. “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.”

Flind said that she hoped the statement would bring an end to recent media speculation about other BBC presenters. Several of BBC staffers had gone on social media to clarify that they were not involved in the unsavoury controversy.

The furore has dominated front-page news and leading radio and television news bulletins in British media after The Sun newspaper first broke the story on Friday.  The news report stated that a mother had accused an unnamed BBC presenter of paying for sexually explicit photographs from her teenage child, who was 17 when contact was first made, and who is now 20.

The incident comes as a major embarrassment for the publicly funded BBC, which was rocked in recent years by scandals that saw some of their biggest names revealed as serial sex offenders, according to a Reuters report.