26 Aug 2011

Journalists lose jobs over fake news report

7:57 pm on 26 August 2011

Four television journalists in Australia have been sacked or resigned over the faking of reports about the search for a teenage boy's remains.

The journalists twice pretended they were reporting live from a Channel Nine helicopter hovering over the search site in Queensland.

The newsreader and on-screen captions also gave the impression the reporters were live from the news helicopter near the search site when in reality they were 90km away.

Channel Nine management sacked the reporters involved, Melissa Mallett and Cameron Price, and producer Aaron Wakely.

Queensland news director Lee Anderson also tended his resignation.

In a joint statement, Nine Queensland managing director Kylie Blucher and Nine's director of news and current affairs Mark Calvert, said, "our primary consideration was always Nine News' commitment to accuracy. This is critical not only to our charter but to maintaining the trust we have developed in our audience."

The search for Daniel Morcombe's remains has made headlines in Australia, and earlier this month a 41-year-old man was charged with his murder.

The 13-year-old went missing in 2003 while waiting on a bus.

The News Director of Channel Nine's rival Channel Seven in Brisbane - Rob Raschke was instrumental in the discovery of the fake Nine crosses, ordering his cameras to monitor the rival station's helipad at the weekend.