Newsnight: BBC defends decision to invite an actor on as ‘genuine participant’

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A “vicar” who has appeared on Newsnight to voice support for Theresa May also works as an actress and served as an extra in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, it has emerged.

Lynn Hayter, who performs on screen using her middle name, Marina, has spoken out in favour of Brexit and the Prime Minister on the BBC’s flagship news and current affairs programme sporting a dog collar. Now theories are circulating online that she was paid to support Mrs May.

Now theories are circulating online that she was paid to support Mrs May.

Ms Hayter is a minister for the self-styled church, Seeds for Wealth, which claims it will take congregations to “a higher level that will release you into your financial freedom”.

Newsnight denial

Some social media users have claimed that Ms Hayter was being paid by the Government or other forces to sell Theresa May’s deal to the public, a Guardian journalist, Jim Waterson, observed on Thursday in a Twitter post.

Lynn Hayter appears on Newsnight.

Lynn Hayter appears on Newsnight.

This caused speculation to mount further and prompted Newsnight to defend its decision to have Ms Hayter on the show.

Newsnight denied the allegations, saying in a statement: “Claims that Lynn appeared on Newsnight as a paid actor are false.”

The Newsnight statement added: “Lynn is a pastor and was a genuine participant of our Brexit debate. She carries out work as an extra using her middle name but this is not relevant to the capacity in which she appeared.”

This story first appeared on the i.