Two Sydney radio jocks who prank-called a London hospital
where Prince William's pregnant wife was being treated have
been taken off the air after the death of a nurse at the
centre of the hoax.
Sydney 2Day FM presenters Mel Greig and Michael Christian
have been told not to comment on the matter which made
international news and has been linked to the death of
respected nurse and mother Jacintha Saldanha, 46.
A statement from 2Day FM's parent company, Southern Cross
Austereo (SCA), said it is "deeply saddened by the tragic
"Chief executive officer Rhys Holleran has spoken with the
presenters, they are both deeply shocked and at this time we
have agreed that they not comment about the circumstances,"
the statement said.
"SCA and the hosts have decided that they will not return to
their radio show until further notice out of respect for what
can only be described as a tragedy."
Police are not treating Ms Saldanha's death as suspicious and
numerous British media outlets have labelled it a suicide.
She was unable to be revived after being found unconscious at
nursing staff accommodation near London's exclusive King
Edward VII Hospital at 9.35am (local time) on Friday.
Ms Saldanha earlier this week answered a call to the hospital
from Greig and Christian posing as the Queen and Prince
Charles. She was taken in and passed the call to the ward
The pair were given confidential details on the condition of
the Duchess of Cambridge, who was being treated for acute
"We can confirm that Jacintha was recently the victim of a
hoax call ...," hospital chief executive John Lofthouse told
reporters on Friday afternoon, confirming her death.
Earlier in the week, Mr Lofthouse described the prank as
"foolish" and said the hospital would review its telephone
protocol as a result. Ms Saldanha was not disciplined over
He described Ms Saldanha, married and with two children, as a
"first-class nurse who cared diligently for hundreds of
"Everyone is shocked by the loss of a much-loved and valued
colleague. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with her
family and her friends," he said.
A brief statement from relatives said Ms Saldanha's family
was "deeply saddened by the loss of our beloved Jacintha" and
asked for "privacy at this difficult time".
News of Ms Saldanha's death was acknowledged by the royal
"Their royal highnesses were looked after so wonderfully well
at all times by everybody at King Edward VII Hospital, and
their thoughts and prayers are with Jacintha Saldanha's
family, friends and colleagues at this very sad time," said a
statement issued by St James's Palace.
A royal aide confirmed to Sky News that no complaint was
lodged with the hospital following the prank.
Greig and Christian apologised for their "lighthearted"
prank, but have been bombarded with online abuse for their
stunt and have since disabled their Twitter accounts.