Australian prank DJ to attend suicide nurse's inquest in London

SYDNEY (AFP) - An Australian radio DJ linked to the suicide of a British nurse after a royal prank call said Monday she would attend the London inquest and answer any questions.

Radio jockey Mel Greig issued a statement through her lawyers after The Sunday Times reported that nurse Jacintha Saldanha left a suicide note blaming her and fellow 2Day FM host Michael Christian.

Ms Greig has been granted permission to appear as an individual at the inquest into Saldanha's death, the statement said.

Lawyers Slater & Gordon said Ms Greig's thoughts had been with Ms Saldanha's family ever since her death.

"Ms Greig fully understands their need for answers, which is why she has taken this step to appear as an individual at the inquest.

"She is determined to address any questions surrounding her role in these tragic events as part of the inquest.

"Ms Greig wants the family to know she will answer any questions the coroner or the family's lawyers may have at the inquest."

The Indian-born nurse was found hanged from a scarf three days after falling victim to the prank radio call targeting Prince William's pregnant wife Catherine.

The Sunday Times said a handwritten note from Ms Saldanha was addressed to her managers at the private King Edward VII's Hospital in London, where Catherine was being treated for acute morning sickness in December.

"Please accept my apologies. I am truly sorry. Thank you for all your support. I hold the Radio Australians Mel Greig and Michael Christian responsible for this act. Please make them pay my mortgage. I am sorry," Ms Saldanha reportedly wrote.

At an initial hearing in December, the inquest into the 46-year-old's death heard that Ms Saldanha was found dead in hospital staff accommodation three days after the hoax call.

Ms Saldanha had accepted the DJs' call pretending to be Queen Elizabeth II and William's father Prince Charles, before passing it onto a colleague who divulged details of Kate's morning sickness.

The prank made global headlines and her death triggered a major backlash against the radio network and the hosts.

The inquest was scheduled to resume on Thursday amid reports it may be delayed.

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