Simon Cowell Condemns Sexual Assault on Former ‘X Factor’ Contestant as ‘Terrible and Heartbreaking’

Simon Cowell

Simon Cowell expresses deep sadness and sympathy for a former “X Factor” contestant who experienced a sexual assault, calling it a terrible and heartbreaking incident. Lucy Spraggan, the contestant, revealed in an interview with The Guardian that she was raped by a hotel porter while participating in the show. She criticized the support provided by the show’s producers following the assault.

Lucy Spraggan, known for performing her own songs on “The X Factor,” withdrew from the show, citing illness. However, she later revealed that the true reason for her departure was the rape incident, which occurred after a night out with fellow contestant Rylan Clark and the show’s producers.

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Spraggan recounted waking up the next day feeling immense dread and confusion, realizing that she had been raped but struggling to process the trauma. Despite the ordeal, she put on a brave face and carried on. The hotel porter responsible for the assault was later prosecuted and imprisoned.

Fremantle, the production company behind “The X Factor,” expressed deep regret and apologized for Spraggan’s ordeal. They mentioned that they have made efforts to learn from such incidents and improve their aftercare processes.

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Spraggan, who has chosen to waive her right to anonymity, spoke out about the lack of support she received from the show’s producers after the trial. She wrote to the production company seeking an explanation. Simon Cowell personally reached out to Spraggan, expressing his apologies and remorse for what she had been through.

Cowell, who was not involved with “The X Factor” during the year of the assault, released a statement acknowledging his sympathy and apologizing for Spraggan’s experience. He emphasized that he had thought about her many times over the years and expressed his deep regret.

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“The X Factor” has faced criticism from other former contestants in the UK regarding their treatment. Several lawsuits, including one from Katie Waissel, are reportedly in progress. The network that broadcasts the show, ITV, has expressed compassion for Spraggan and commended her resilience and bravery. They noted that Thames, a part of Fremantle, and Syco, Simon Cowell’s production company, had primary responsibility for the duty of care toward program contributors.