July 11 (Bloomberg) -- London police asked their Australian counterparts to review whether any of the nation’s laws were broken when a Sydney radio station made a prank phone call to the U.K. hospital where the Duchess of Cambridge was staying.
The Australian Federal Police and New South Wales police have received a referral from the Metropolitan Police Service regarding the hoax call, the AFP said in an e-mailed statement today. A nurse at London’s King Edward VII’s Hospital, who took the call, committed suicide after the incident last December.
Radio hosts at Southern Cross Media Group Ltd., Mel Greig and Michael Christian, impersonated Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles in the call seeking details about the health of Kate Middleton, the pregnant wife of Charles’s son William, second in line to the British throne.
In February, prosecutors decided not to press charges against Greig and Christian in the U.K. following an investigation by the MPS.
“However misguided, the telephone call was intended as a harmless prank,” Malcolm McHaffie, Crown Prosecution Service deputy head of special crime, said at the time. “The consequences in this case were very sad.”
The presenters never expected to be put through, according to an interview broadcast Dec. 10 on Nine Entertainment Co.’s “A Current Affair.”
“There’s not a minute that goes by where we don’t think about her family and what they must be going through,” Greig said, according to the transcript. “The thought we may have played a part in that is gut wrenching.”
Greig has filed a claim against Southern Cross with Fair Work Australia, the nation’s workplace tribunal, saying it failed to provide a safe workplace, the Sydney Morning Herald reported today.
The AFP and New South Wales police with evaluate the referral from the Metropolitan Police to determine if any offences can be identified, AFP said today. The departments will make no further comment while the evaluation process is ongoing, it said.
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