UK spending watchdog to investigate severance payouts at BBC

LONDON – Britain’s public spending watchdog says it will investigate severance packages at the BBC in the wake of a highly-criticized payout to the broadcaster’s former director general.

The probe comes after a group of British lawmakers accused the BBC of being cavalier with taxpayers’ money by paying 450,000 pounds ($730,000) in severance to George Entwistle — double the amount he was entitled to — when he quit last month over the BBC’s disastrous handling of fallout from the Jimmy Savile sex abuse scandal.

Barry Lester, a spokesman for the National Audit Office, said Wednesday the watchdog had written to the BBC saying it wanted to look at Entwistle’s payout and that the broadcaster had responded by asking the NAO to undertake a wider study in 2013 on its severance packages.




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