Crisis talks over hoax call on Kate

Mel Greig and Michael Christian of Australian radio station 2Day FM, with Jacintha Saldanha, right. Photo / Supplied
Mel Greig and Michael Christian of Australian radio station 2Day FM, with Jacintha Saldanha, right. Photo / Supplied

Directors of the Australian radio station behind a prank call to the Duchess of Cambridge's hospital held a crisis meeting last night as global condemnation of the hoax continued.

The Southern Cross Austereo board was expected to discuss a stinging letter from the London hospital where British nurse Jacintha Saldanha worked before she died in a suspected suicide.

She had answered the phone at King Edward VII Hospital when 2Day FM hosts Mel Greig and Michael Christian rang, pretending to be the Queen and Prince Charles asking for an update on Kate's condition. She put them through to another nurse, who gave out sensitive information.

The radio duo are now in hiding and receiving counselling, having been confronted with a barrage of abuse via social media.

Southern Cross Austereo is expected to release a statement today on the directors' meeting.

In the letter to the firm, hospital chairman Lord Glenarthur said: "King Edward VII's Hospital cares for sick people, and it was extremely foolish of your presenters even to consider trying to lie their way through to one of our patients, let alone actually make the call."

A radio spokeswoman said Greig and Christian will speak to the media, but the timing will depend on their state of mind as they are both described as fragile.

In a video message on the Austereo website, CEO Rhys Holleran said there were no current plans for the duo to return to the air. They were "incredibly distraught".

- AAP

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