Jon Sopel apologises for ‘getting it wrong’ over Coutts account closure
Jon Sopel has apologised for mocking Nigel Farage over the closure of his Coutts account, adding to pressure on the BBC to address its handling of the story.
Mr Sopel, who was the corporation’s North America editor until 2021, said earlier this month Mr Farage “must feel like a bit of a Charlie” after the BBC reported his account was closed for financial, rather than political, reasons.
But after The Telegraph revealed Coutts gave differing “values” as a reason for the account closures, Mr Sopel wrote: “Dear Nigel, [I] always believed when I get things wrong, I own up to it.
“I got it wrong. Sorry. That will teach me to trust reporting of my old employer. If your political views were even part of the reason why account was suspended from Coutts that is totally reprehensible.”
Mr Farage replied: “Jon, Thank you so very much for those words. I fully accept the apology and wish you well. As broadcasters we now have a duty to fight for free speech for our viewers and listeners.”
It will add to pressure on the BBC to address its handling of the story after it published an exclusive on July 4 headlined “Nigel Farage bank account shut for falling below wealth limit”, quoting “people familiar with Coutts’ move” and claiming that it had been a “commercial” decision.
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