Jonathan Ross in controversial return to BBC Radio 2 despite Sachsgate past

Andrew Sachs’ wife calls news ‘a slap in the face’

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The Independent Culture

The BBC has confirmed that Jonathan Ross is to return to present on Radio 2, six years after the Sachsgate scandal caused him and then presenter Russell Brand to be suspended from the station.

Ross, who had appeared as a guest on Brand's show, was suspended without pay from all BBC shows for three months in 2008 following the row caused by his and Brand’s actions.

The pair had left a series of lewd messages on the answerphone of actor Andrew Sachs regarding his granddaughter Georgina Baillie, alleging that Brand had had sexual relations her, with Ross swearing in one of the messages.

Brand resigned from his role, as did the channel’s controller Lesley Douglas, and Ross returned to the station for another 18 months.

The BBC has said Ross’s return will be a “one-off” stint and that there are no plans for him to return permanently.

But Sachs’s wife Melody said the news was “a slap in the face”, adding that the BBC’s decision was “very sad and thoughtless and disrespectful”, the Daily Mail reports.

A BBC spokesperson said: "Jonathan apologised for his mistake at the time and returned to Radio 2 for a year after the incident, before leaving in 2010."

"He is an experienced and talented broadcaster who presented on Radio 2 for 10 years and was very popular with our audience.

"He is standing in for Steve Wright while he is on holiday and we hope listeners will enjoy listening to him on the network for these few days."