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Probe into payoffs at the Beeb.

PUBLIC spending watchdogs are set to investigate the huge payoffs given to staff leaving the BBC.

It has emerged that almost 200 senior staff have walked away with redundancy packages of more than PS100,000 in the last three years.

And after an outcry from MPs over the "excessively generous" payoffs, the National Audit Office are to launch a probe.

The row came to a head after failed director general George Entwistle got a payoff of PS450,000 - double what he was entitled to - when he stepped down over the Jimmy Savile sex abuse scandal.

The BBC said it was worth spending the money to get Entwistle out quickly and without a legal battle.

But the Commons public accounts committee criticised the BBC's use of licence fee money as "cavalier" and "out of line with public expectations".

The National Audit Office confirmed that Entwistle's deal was behind their decision to investigate.

But they added that the BBC had asked them to take a wider look at their payoff policy.

A spokesman for the BBC said: "Staff who are made redundant receive what they are entitled to in their contract.

"While redundancies involve costs in the short term, in the long term they represent significant savings.

"We offer our full co-operation with the National Audit Office."

BEEB ADMIT FAKES: Page 29

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PS450,000 J For Entwistle
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Dec 27, 2012
Words:227
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