BRAZILIAN POLICE ARE investigating allegations of sexual assault aired on the country’s Big Brother reality TV show, a spokeswoman for Rio’s police department said Tuesday.
Police inspector Antonio Ricardo L Nunes said he questioned show participants a day after the wildly popular programme announced that contestant Daniel Echaniz was being thrown out over suspicions of “gravely inadequate” behavior.
Nunes would provide no details on the questioning.
Echaniz, a 31-year-old male model, was booted off the show after allegations emerged that he had engaged in sexual behaviour with contestant Monique Amin after she had fallen asleep.
The incident allegedly took place following a Saturday night party involving alcohol. Grainy program footage shows the two in a bed, the sheets moving as Amin lies inert.
Speaking on Monday night’s show, Big Brother Brazil presenter Pedro Bial said, “We analysed images that show a violation of the rules of the programme. Following careful study, the program’s management found that the behavior of the participant … was gravely inadequate.”
The incident has been the subject of intense debate in Brazil, sparking questions about what exactly entails sexual assault.
Concerns were raised by members of the public who viewed the grainy, black-and-white footage appeared on the pay-per-view version of the show. However, the young woman involved has not reportedly made an official complaint.
The BBC reports quotes police spokesperson Edileide Macedo as saying: “The young woman denies she was raped and has not pressed charges… We continue to investigate the case because it is a public matter.”