MPs described Phillip Schofield’s ambush as a “silly stunt” (ITV)
MPs described Phillip Schofield’s ambush as a “silly stunt” (ITV)

ITV's This Morning could face a possible investigation from a media watchdog after presenter Phillip Schofield handed David Cameron a list of alleged Tory paedophiles he found on the internet.

Broadcasting regulator Ofcom confirmed receipt of "around 100" complaints from viewers after Schofield handed Cameron a list of alleged paedophiles based on "about three minutes" of internet research.

Ofcom said it will look into the complaints and a decision on whether a investigation will be launched will be made at a later date.

The presenter was forced to apologise after the list of names was briefly visible live on air when he passed it over to the Prime Minister, putting the incident down to a "misjudged camera angle".

One of the people who made a complaint to Ofcom was Conservative MP Rob Wilson, who reported the ITV programme for failing to give individuals a right to respond before subjecting them to serious allegations.

Schofield was widely condemned for the "silly stunt", with Home Office minister Damian Green describing the ambush as "pretty tasteless" and Tory Stuart Andrew describing it as "completely irresponsible and outrageous".

Cameron did not look at or comment on the list handed to him, and said there is a risk an investigation into child abuse could turn into a "witch-hunt against people who are gay."

His response was criticised by gay rights campaigners who believed Cameron should not have spoken about paedophilia in the same way as homosexuality.

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell said: "There is no reason why he should link the current scandals with gay people or warn of an anti-gay witch-hunt.

"The current investigations concern paedophilia, not homosexuality."

Speaking on BBC's Question Time, Green condemned Schofield's actions but defended Cameron's witch-hunt comment.

He said: "I think the stunt that Phillip Schofield pulled of presenting a list of names he had taken off the internet to the Prime Minister live on television was a tasteless and silly stunt and he should not have done it.

"What the Prime Minister was warning about is that if we just start plastering names all over the place, of people against whom there may be no evidence, it may well turn into a witch-hunt and clearly because of the attitudes towards gay people at the time, in the 80s, many of them are likely to be on it."