More women come forward to accuse Russell Brand after sex allegations as BBC launches 'urgent' probe and Channel 4 pulls shows featuring the comedian with Netflix urged to follow
- Russell Brand has been accused of rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse
- Broadcasters C4 and the BBC are looking to separate allegations of predatory behaviour towards staff and audience members while working for them
After Russell Brand was hit with accusations of rape and sexual assault, more women have come forward with allegations about how he has treated them, it has emerged.
The Times and Sunday Times claim 'several women' have come forward with undisclosed allegations about Brand's behaviour during the early 2000s in wake of their joint investigation with Channel 4 which was published on Saturday.
The latest allegations - which the newspaper says have not been investigated, but will now be 'rigorously checked' - follow accusations from four women, including one who claims she was sexually assaulted by Brand during a three-month relationship with him when she was 16 and still at school.
The BBC is now also facing 'urgent questions' after it was claimed that Brand, 48, used his company-provided car service to pick the girl up from school.
It comes as both BBC and Channel 4 have launched internal investigations into separate accusations of predatory behaviour by Brand towards staff and audience members during the time of his employment.
Channel 4 has since removed all programmes linked to Brand from its website, including episodes of The Great British Bake Off and Big Brother's Big Mouth in which he was featured, The Daily Telegraph reported.
Netflix has since been urged to remove his comedy special, titled Re:Birth, from its streaming catalogue.
The maverick actor and stand-up comic has strenuously denied any wrongdoing and blamed the ‘mainstream media’ for the ‘litany of astonishing rather baroque attacks’.
Russell Brand is alleged to have asked staff on the Big Brother shows he was hosting to ask female audience members for their numbers. Pictured: Russell Brand hosting Big Brother's Little Brother in May 2006
Former staffers on the show claimed they felt Brand had got them to 'act like pimps' with his requests. Pictured: Brand on Celebrity Great British Bake Off
Russell Brand pictured with his wife Laura Gallacher
Alice (pictured) alleges that Russell Brand sexually assaulted her when she was 16 years old. She claims he would send a car to pick her up secondary school lessons, which she has since claimed was a 'BBC car'
The comedian released a video last week refuting all the allegations against him. Pictured: Brand leaving the Troubabour Wembley Park theatre after a gig on Saturday night
BBC chiefs launched an investigation into Brand last night after the comedian was accused of rape.
Their probe was announced minutes before Scotland Yard piled on the pressure by announcing that detectives would like to speak to the comedian’s alleged victims.
Brand, a former star of the BBC and Channel 4, faces bombshell claims from women alleging sexual assaults, abuse and predatory behaviour – including one who was a 16-year-old schoolgirl.
EXECUTIVES WITH QUESTIONS TO ANSWER
THE RADIO BOSS
Radio 2 controller Lesley Douglas gave Russell Brand his own BBC show, firstly at the digital station 6 Music then in a short space of time at Radio 2 itself.
She was regarded as the presenter’s biggest champion at the corporation. But it was because of Brand and Jonathan Ross that she was forced to resign in 2008 after the pair left a series of lewd phone messages to Fawlty Towers star Andrew Sachs claiming Brand had had sex with his granddaughter.
Among the latest allegations against Brand are that Ms Douglas had received complaints about his behaviour, but that nothing resulted. After leaving the BBC, Ms Douglas joined Universal Music. She is now thought to be running her own production company.
The Mail was unable to contact her, but a statement on Dispatches read: ‘Ms Douglas did not at any time encourage, enable, and/or fail herself to take any adequate steps within her power with regard to the conduct of Mr Brand of which she was aware.’
BRAND’S agent John Noel is the man who turned him into a huge star. Representing him at his company John Noel Management from 2002 to 2017, he appeared to be willing to go the extra mile to dig his client out of any crises, support which helped Brand land a plum role presenting E4’s Big Brother spin-off show Big Brother’s Big Mouth in 2004.
Noel’s son Nik Linnen was even best man at Brand’s wedding to Katy Perry. The Mail has contacted Noel. A company spokesman said they were unable to respond to the allegations for legal reasons.
THE TV EXECUTIVE
Sir Peter Bazalgette – the man who brought Big Brother to our screens – was a senior executive at the show’s production company Endemol at the time some of Brand’s alleged actions were said to have taken place.
While Sir Peter is not thought to have had any direct role in producing the shows, there have been questions about how much Endemol managers knew about Brand. Endemol said that it has no record about these issues being ‘formally raised’. Sir Peter has been contacted for comment.
But the claims from one businesswoman – who alleged Brand raped her when she refused a threesome – and another who said she was 16 when he choked her during a sexual act, prompted a firestorm yesterday.
Among the complaints raised in the investigation were allegations by a woman, referred to as Alice to protect her identity, who claims she was sexually assaulted by Brand as a 16-year-old.
She alleges he took her virginity, was 'preoccupied' with her being 'innocent and pure', and often referred to her as 'The Child'.
Alice described his behaviour towards her as 'grooming' as Brand would allegedly provide her with scripts on how to deceive her parents into allowing her to visit him. She also claimed he would send his 'BBC car' to her secondary school to pick her up.
'The first time I used it, he told me it was booked to take him to his radio show but he had a friend taking him instead so I should use that car,' she told The Times.
She claimed the chauffeur once took her from Brand's home to her grandmother's house and that on a separate occasion the same car 'picked me up from school'.
Alice added: 'It was the same car...I knew that that was a BBC car.'
The BBC did not initially commit to an inquiry but amid the growing outcry, it shifted its position last night and a spokesman said it was ‘urgently looking into the issues’.
In a statement, a BBC spokesman said: 'The documentary and associated reports contained serious allegations, spanning a number of years.
'Russell Brand worked on BBC radio programmes between 2006 and 2008 and we are urgently looking into the issues raised.'
The broadcaster yesterday launched an internal investigation into what was known about Brand's alleged behaviour following claims that at least one senior executive was aware of complaints against the comedian and seemingly dismissed them.
Banijay UK, which produced Big Brother's EForum and Big Brother's Big Mouth in the early 2000s, revealed it had also 'launched an urgent investigation' into the 'very serious' allegations from former staff who worked alongside Brand when he hosted the programmes between 2004 and 2006.
The ex-staffers have claimed that Brand got them to 'act like pimps' by getting the numbers of women in the audience and passing notes to them from the presenter.
Channel 4 has also said it is conducting its own internal investigation following allegations of predatory behaviour against Brand.
They said: 'We have asked the production company who produced the programmes for Channel 4 to investigate these allegations and report their findings properly and satisfactorily to us.
'Channel 4 is also conducting its own internal investigation, and we would encourage anyone who is aware of such behaviour to contact us directly.'
The statement added: 'We will be writing to all our current suppliers reminding them of their responsibilities under our Code of Conduct, as we are committed to ensuring our industry has safe, inclusive and professional working environments.'
The network also confirmed to the Telegraph that it has 'taken down all content featuring Russell Brand while we look into the matter'.
MailOnline has approached the BBC, Channel 4 and Netflix for comment.
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Screen grab taken from Channel 4 Dispatches trailer of Nadia - or an actress playing Nadia - speaking about her harrowing experience
The Metropolitan Police have begun enquiries into allegations of sexual assault published in The Sunday Times and on Channel 4's Dispatches.
The show saw multiple women accusing him of abusive and predatory behaviour, including rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse, between 2006 and 2013.
Officers have spoken to The Sunday Times following the report and have now encouraged any potential victims to come forwards. At this time, the force has 'not received any reports in relation' to the allegations of sexual assault detailed in the article or documentary.
Met Police intends to further speak with the newspaper and broadcaster in a bid to 'ensure that any victims of crime who they have spoken with are aware of how they may report any criminal allegations to police'.
The force said in a statement: 'We are aware of media reporting of a series of allegations of sexual assault. At this time, we have not received any reports in relation to this.
'We spoke with the Sunday Times on Saturday, September 16. We will be making further approaches to the Sunday Times and Channel 4 to ensure that any victims of crime who they have spoken with are aware of how they may report any criminal allegations to police.'
The Times today reported that more women have come forward to detail allegations of Brand's alleged treatment of them. Those claims have yet to be investigated.
But one alleged victim whose story was featured in the documentary says she is relieved that other women's allegations are being heard.
The woman, referred to as Nadia in the investigation, told The Times last night: 'I'm super-proud of all the women who have come forward. I know how hard it is - thinking "I'm the only one" and "Who is going to believe me".
'It was all very hard to read and to watch but I think it's very necessary - because he needs to be stopped.'
Nadia, who claims Brand raped her in his Los Angeles home in 2012, added that he 'cannot hurt me any more' and said she hopes that he will 'not hurt anybody else'.
Brand was dropped by a charity working to end violence against women in light of the accusations. However, he has received support from some public figures, with the likes of Elon Musk, Andrew Tate and Laurence Fox all appearing to back the comedian as he claimed to be the victim of a 'co-ordinated media attack'.
Billionaire tech mogul Musk, self-proclaimed misogynist Tate and actor-turned-political activist Fox threw their weight behind Brand, fellow comedians such as Jo Caulfield, Sofie Hagen and Daniel Sloss appeared to turn their backs on him.
Russell Brand pictured on Saturday evening leaving the Troubabour Wembley Park theatre in north-west London after performing a comedy set
Two of the women in Channel 4's Dispatches which aired on Saturday night said they felt production companies had 'enabled' Brand's behaviour.
Production runner, Rachel, 24, worked alongside Brand on Big Brother's EForum, later Big Mouth. Weeks after she started the role, Brand is said to have focused his attention on her.
Rachel said: 'It's difficult to say when the line was crossed.' She added that producers often asked her to deliver unfavourable news to Brand to 'soften the blow'.
She said the pair went on to have sex, which he told her was a breach of his contract.
Rachel said: 'He made clear to me I couldn't tell anyone else on the crew because he had it written into his contract that he wasn't allowed to have any sexual contact with anyone working on Big Brother.
READ MORE HERE: The Brand backers: From Elon Musk to Laurence Fox and Andrew Tate... who is standing up for rape-accused British comic after Dispatches documentary?
'It sounds slightly dramatic but with hindsight and now as an older woman I can say with clarity that, you know, I felt like I was groomed, for sex.
'Production companies enabled him to exist in these environments where he was able to take advantage of who he was.'
Three staff who worked on Big Brother told Dispatches about Brand.
One said: 'My role was to recruit audience members for the live show. We used to go out flyering out by the universities, find university students who would come be on the show.'
Another said: 'Russell is pointing out audience members and asking the runner to get phone numbers.'
A third said they would be handed paper sometimes telling which hotel Brand was in.
The production staff said they received tearful phone calls the next day from those that had been to see the comedian.
One said: 'It was like we were taking lambs into slaughter. We were basically acting like pimps to Russell Brand's needs.'
A researcher claimed concerns about his behaviour while working on the shows were reported to production managers at Endemol, which was bought by Banijay UK in 2020.
A statement from Banijay UK, which bought Endemol in 2020, said: 'In light of the very serious allegations raised by Dispatches and The Times/Sunday Times investigation relating to the alleged serious misconduct of Russell Brand while presenting shows produced by Endemol in 2004 and 2005, Banijay UK has launched an urgent internal investigation and will co-operate with any requests for information from broadcast partners and external agencies.
'We also encourage anybody who feels that they were affected by Brand's behaviour while working on these productions to contact us in confidence.'
Banijay UK, which produced Big Brother's EForum and Big Brother's Big Mouth in the early 2000s, said it had 'launched an urgent investigation' into his alleged behaviour. Pictured: Russell Brand standing with Davina McCall during filming for Big Brother in 2005
Comedian Russell Brand was accused of rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse of four women following a bombshell investigation. Pictured: Brand leaving Troubadour Wembley Park theatre in north London following a live performance of his show
In a statement, Channel 4 said: 'Channel 4 is appalled to learn of these deeply troubling allegations, including behaviour alleged to have taken place on programmes made for Channel 4 between 2004 and 2007.
'We are determined to understand the full nature of what went on. We have carried out extensive document searches and have found no evidence to suggest the alleged incidents were brought to the attention of Channel 4. We will continue to review this in light of any further information we receive, including the accounts of those affected individuals.
'We will be asking the production company who produced the programmes for Channel 4 to investigate these allegations and report their findings properly and satisfactorily to us.
'In the many years since the alleged incidents took place, there has obviously been extensive change in Channel 4's management and commissioning teams. Today, Channel 4 has a zero-tolerance approach to unacceptable behaviour and has a robust Code of Conduct. We require all suppliers to have in place rigorous safeguarding policies and provide whistle-blowing support, including Channel 4's Speak Up facility.
'We are committed to ensuring our industry has safe, inclusive and professional working environments.'
Andrew Tate took to X, posting a cartoon meme of a knight preparing for battle, captioned: 'On my way to fight the crazy b***h allegations'
In a separate Tweet responding to Brand's video he called the allegations made against the comedian a 'Matrix attack'
Responding to the Tweet, tech mogul Elon Musk told Brand: 'Of course. They don't like competition'
Smooth Radio presenter Kirsty Gallacher shared Brand's video on her Instagram story with a large red love heart, however, a few hours later and after the investigation was published in full at 4pm BST, the post vanished from her Instagram stories, suggesting she had deleted it
While TV bosses investigate the claims made by Brand's accusers, the comic has received support online from the likes of Andrew Tate, Elon Musk, Laurence Fox and his sister-in-law Kirsty Gallacher.
Appearing to support Brand, Tate said 'Welcome to the club Russell Brand' accompanied by a cartoon meme of a knight preparing for battle, captioned: 'On my way to fight the crazy b***h allegations'.
Tate, who is currently facing charges of rape and human trafficking - which he has denied - in a separate Tweet responded to Brand's video calling it a 'Matrix attack'.
Meanwhile, Tesla and X owner Musk, also appeared to back the under fire star's comments on the media. He said: 'Of course. They don't like competition.'
READ MORE HERE: So what IS Katy Perry's big secret about Russell Brand? How pop star said she knew the 'real truth' about her ex-husband but was keeping it 'locked in my safe for a rainy day' as she maintains her silence in wake of rape allegations
In a video questioning the allegations against Brand, Fox said: 'It's fascinating to see some parts of the legacy media talking about Russell Brand like we are going to believe anything they say about anything.
'Whatever Russell Brand got up to, and I can guarantee it because I was around, everything he would have done, would have been sort of acceptable.
'Because otherwise his producers would have called him out and fired him.
'Now that may be an uncomfortable thing to deal with for people but that's how the world was then.'
His sister-in-law, model and TV star Kirsty Gallacher, initially appeared to be in support of Brand, who is married to her younger sister Laura.
She shared his video to her Instagram story with a huge red love heart - but just a few hours after the full investigation was published the post, which remains up for 24 hours, had disappeared.
However, famous names from the British comedy circuit appeared to distance themselves from Brand.
Mock of the Week presenter Jo Caulfield took to X this morning, writing: 'In whatever industry you work in, keep speaking out.
'Predatory behaviour and abuse is wrong.... It's a tragic and age old story and it has to stop.'
Meanwhile, British comedian Sofie Hagen also spoke out against alleged lurid behaviour within the industry.
She wrote: 'In my current show, I briefly talk about a comedian who was once preying on a 16 year old girl AND IT WASN'T EVEN RUSSELL BRAND. It was ANOTHER ONE.
'The internet is flooded with statistics and examples of what happens to victims who report sexual assault or people that speak out against predators, so if it bugs you that we all keep talking about unnamed predators, then know, it probably bugs us too that they're unnamed.'
And comic Dom Joly wrote: 'The amount of people defending Russell Brand, slagging off the women involved and believing that this is all because Brand is some 'threat to the Matrix' is pure Trumpism and deeply, deeply depressing...'
Following Channel 4's Dispatches investigation into the alleged abuse, Trevi - a charity that supports vulnerable women and children - have cut all ties with Brand
On Brand's charity Stay Free, he lists several organisations he donates too. Trevi said it had cut ties with Brand, however,, the Treasures Foundation said it was not making a decision at this time
Earlier yesterday Trevi, a women's charity that Brand has worked with for more than a year, said they had 'ended their association' with him.
The organisation that helps vulnerable women and children said it had been 'deeply saddened and upset' by the alleged victim's stories adding its priority remains protecting the 'safety and well-being of all women and girls'.
A photo of Brand still remains on the charity's homepage, however, along with an article about how he is raising funds for Trevi at his new live show Bipolarisation in Plymouth on Tuesday.
In a statement posted to its Instagram just hours after the shocking documentary was released Trevi said: 'We are deeply saddened and upset by the stories reported on this evening's Channel 4 Dispatches programme regarding Russell Brand.
READ MORE HERE: TV bosses 'said female crew would be taken off show fronted by Russell Brand because of fear they'd be assaulted or harassed' alleged victim says
'Russell became aware of our charity in 2022 after hearing about some of the incredible mothers we have helped to become drug-free over the years. He wanted to support our cause and raise money through his Stay Free Foundation.
'Today's media revelations have been difficult to process but our priority remains and continues to be the safety and well-being of all women and girls now and in the future.
'We have ended our association with Russell Brand and the Stay Free Foundation.
'As a charity whose values put women's voices at the heart of what we do, we always prioritise supporting women affected by violence and abuse and empower them to live without violence and fear.'
It added that it understood how the allegations could be triggering for some women and urged those who need support to contact The Survivor Pathway.
In the investigations, one woman alleged Brand raped her against the wall in his Los Angeles home when she was in her 30s. Another – whom he referred to as 'the child' – told how the presenter targeted her when was 16 years old and still at school, and he was aged 30.
The Met Police said it had been made 'aware' of media reports about 'a series of allegations of sexual assault' and urged any alleged victims to come forward.
But in an extra-ordinary preemptive fightback, Brand took to social media ahead of the 90-minute Dispatches documentary to the social media to 'absolutely deny' a string of 'very serious criminal allegations'.
The comedian is also a supporter of several other organisations, including the Friendly House - an organisation in Los Angeles that provides women seeking recovery from alcohol and other substance use.
One of the charities Brand supports is the Friendly House in Los Angeles, California. He remains on their homepage and is set to host a lunch in October
Brand is also a supporter of the BAC O'Connor Centre, which helps provide rehabilitation for recovering addicts
The comedian's charity Stay Free, which helps those with addiction, also donates money to the Treasure Foundation.
The foundation which helps women suffering from drug abuse in East London, however, told MailOnline that it would not be cutting any ties with the comedian at present, adding that the women it supports were the priority.
It said that many of the people supported by the foundation have 'been through sexual trauma' and some have even 'been perpetrators', adding that part of the program includes practicing forgiveness.
A spokeswoman said: 'At Treasures Foundation we only know Russell Brand in the capacity of him wanting to make amends and give back to women, hence the desire of his to give to our charity.
READ MORE HERE: Rhian Sugden says Russell Brand joined 'no more Page 3' campaign after failing to 's**g his way through' its list of models as she discusses their short-lived fling amid allegations of rape and sexual assault
'We are part of a program that practices forgiveness and making amends. Many of us have been through sexual trauma and some of us have been perpetrators.
'We need to take this time to process what is going on, we are talking to the women we support and will be issuing feedback from them, as as always the voice of the women we support is of the upmost importance.
'We cant make an opinion on what has come out right now. We just know him for the good that he does now.'
The comedian, who has insisted that during his 'time of promiscuity the relationships I had were absolutely always consensual', also supports the BAC O'Connor Centre, in Staffordshire.
The organisation helps rehabilitate those recovering from drug and alcohol addiction.
A video of Brand, who is been open about his own struggles with addiction in the past, explaining why those suffering should choose the organisation.
MailOnline has contacted Trevi, the Friendly House and BAC O'Connor.
Just hours after the allegations first came to light, Brand took centre stage at Wembley Park Theatre in front of a crowd of 2,000 people.
He told fans as he continued his tour: 'I really appreciate your support. I love you.
'I've got a lot to talk to you about. There are obviously some things I absolutely cannot talk about and I appreciate that you will understand.'
The married father-of-two, whose wife Laura is expecting their third child, has also said that while he had been 'very, very promiscuous' in the past, the 'relationships I had were absolutely always consensual'.
There was no sign of him yesterday at the family's £3million riverside home in Oxfordshire.
It is not the first time Brand has been accused of inappropriate behaviour.
Jordan Martin, a former girlfriend, claimed he had sexually assaulted her and 'made me brush my teeth so hard my gums bled so I would taste 'anonymous' to him'.
Russell Brand's comments in full:
Hello there you awakening wonders. Now this is not the usual type of video we make on this channel where we critique, attack and undermine the news in all its corruption because in this story I am the news.
I have received two extremely disturbing letters - or a letter and an email - one from a mainstream media TV company, one from a newspaper listing a litany of extremely egregious and aggressive attacks, as well as some pretty stupid stuff, like my community festival should be stopped and I shouldn't be able to attack mainstream media narratives on this channel.
But amidst this litany of astonishing rather baroque attacks are some very serious allegations that I absolutely refute. These allegations pertain to a time when I was in the mainstream, when I was in the newspapers all the time, when I was in the movies, and as I've written about extensively in my books I was very, very promiscuous.
During that time of promiscuity the relationships I had were absolutely always consensual. I was always transparent about that then, almost too transparent, and I am being transparent about it now as well.
And to see that transparency metastasized into something criminal that I absolutely deny makes me question is there another agenda at play.
Particularly when we have seen coordinated media attacks before, like Joe Rogan where he dared to take a medicine the mainstream media didn't approve of and we saw a spate of headlines of media outlets around the world using the same language.
I am aware that you guys in the comments have been for a while saying 'watch out Russell, they're coming for you,' 'you are getting too close to the truth', 'Russell Brand did not kill himself'.'
I know a year ago there was a spate of articles: Russell Brand is a conspiracy theorists; Russell Brand is right wing.
I am aware of newspapers making phone calls, sending letters to people I know. For ages and ages, it's been clear to me or at least feels to be there's a serious and consorted agenda to control these kinds of spaces and these kind of voices.
I need my voice along with your voice. I don't mind them using my books and my stand up to talk about my promiscuous sexual conduct in the past. What I seriously refute are these very, very serious, criminal allegations.
Also its worth mentioning that there are witnesses whose evidence directly contradicts the narratives that these two mainstream media outlets are trying to construct, apparently in what seems to be to me a coordinated attack.
Now, I don't want to get into this any further because of the serious nature of the allegations but I feel like I'm being attacked and plainly they are working very closely together.
We are obviously going to look into this matter because it is very, very serious.
In the meantime, I want you to stay close, stay awake but more importantly than any of that, if you can stay free.
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