East 17 singer sacked for making ecstasy remarks

Lead singer Brian Harvey has been sacked by East 17 less than a day after making a full apology for his highly controversial statements on ecstasy. In a statement by the band's representatives his three colleagues said they could not condone the taking of ecstasy and Harvey's "unacceptable behaviour".

"His recent remarks about drugs to the media have forced the other three members to demand that Brian leaves the band. The remaining three members of East 17 under no circumstances can condone the taking of ecstasy or any other illegal substances. They want it known that these remarks made by Brian Harvey do not reflect the views of the three other members," the statement said.

Harvey's comments, in which he said he had taken 12 tablets in one night and then driven, caused a backlash, provoking John Major to condemn him in the Commons. The band has also been taken off the playlist by 11 radio stations.

Harvey apologised on Thursday night, saying he regretted what he had said and warning: "Never take ecstasy - it can kill you." But it was not enough to appease his colleagues nor did it quieten the public or media.

A spokesman for the Oxford-based radio station Fox FM said: "Brian Harvey is going to have to come up with something more than a partial apology, which we don't believe. He has to persuade us he is really anti-drugs."

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