Netizens outraged by clip of Mel B's butt being grabbed

Singer Mel B (above) was at an interview on a live TV show when the incident occcured.
Singer Mel B (above) was at an interview on a live TV show when the incident occcured.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

LONDON • Former Spice Girl member Mel B did not sit back and suffer in silence when she felt a hand caressing her buttock.

"Hold on a second. Why are you grabbing my butt?" she asked Louis Walsh sternly.

She was seated on a sofa with Walsh, a judge on the television reality show The X Factor UK, along with other judges Simon Cowell and Cheryl at an interview on a live TV show back in 2014.

In the video of that incident which has resurfaced and is now circulating online, Walsh is clearly seen patting her, reported the Daily Mail.

After she protested, Walsh merely told the group that "I was looking after Mel" and laughed.

The show's host, sensing a confrontation, said: "Louis. Hands where we can see them please."

Cowell, in an attempt to calm Mel B, told her: "Honestly, you're safe."

But she was not mollified, telling Walsh, 65, that what he had done was "inappropriate".

Netizens have lashed out at Walsh, with one person posting: "Why is he even laughing like that instead of apologising?"

Another outraged person noted: "If this is what happens on live TV, can you imagine what goes on behind closed doors?"

Others also lashed out at the other X Factor UK judges for not dumping Walsh from the show after the incident.

But last month, Walsh said that after 13 years on the show, he would not be back as a judge.

Mel B, 43, who is now a judge on the NBC television show America's Got Talent, is facing financial problems.

Various media reports said a portion of her pay is being deducted and forwarded to the American tax authorities to settle her overdue payments.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 11, 2018, with the headline 'Netizens outraged by clip of Mel B's butt being grabbed'. Print Edition | Subscribe