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BAI 'dismay' at leak of Prime Time Investigates report

The authority says it will begin a review to find out how details of an ongoing investigation “entered the public domain”.

Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

THE BROADCASTING AUTHORITY of Ireland has joined RTÉ in expressing “dismay” at how details of its investigation into RTÉ’s Prime Time Investigates documentary, ‘A Mission to Prey’, was made public.

In a brief statement this afternoon the authority expressed “dismay and deep disappointment” that details of the report, which were published in this morning’s Irish Times, had entered the public domain.

“The BAI will review the matter to seek to ascertain how such information was made available,” it said.

The authority added that the statutory investigation into the documentary, which made libellous allegations against Fr Kevin Reynolds, was still ongoing, and that RTÉ had ten days to respond to the BAI’s initial notification.

RTÉ had earlier expressed its disappointment that the report had been leaked “in circumstances where it prejudices RTÉ’s response to the investigation, within an ongoing process, and prejudices the response of the programme-makers as named individuals”.

It also added that the regulatory process required RTÉ to make a submission to the BAI, and that this process had been “undermined” by the newspaper report.

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The Irish Times’ Patsy McGarry and Carl O’Brien this morning said the BAI report had ‘heavily criticised’ the standards of journalism involved, and condemned among other things the poor standards of note-taking in researching the programme.

Read: RTÉ ‘disappointed’ at leak of BAI’s Prime Time criticism

Previously: RTÉ decides to axe Prime Time investigates

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Gavan Reilly

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