Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson has been slammed for a joke about a plane crash just as the Malaysian government announced that it was likely that all passengers aboard missing flight MH370 had died.
The 53-year-old presenter provoked controversy with the tweet:
His poorly timed message came as family members of the missing 239 passengers were told by prime minster Najib Razak: "[We] have to assume beyond reasonable doubt that none of those on board survived."
Fans quickly took to social media to round on Clarkson:
An unrepentant Clarkson retorted: "We all knew it was lost several weeks ago.
But when his arch-nemesis Piers Morgan tweeted "Utterly shameful" an irate Clarkson responded:
FLIGHT MH370 FACTBOX
Flight MH370 took off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport en route to Beijing at 00:41 on Saturday 8 March (16:41 GMT Friday).
About 50 minutes later, the aircraft lost contact with air traffic control.
No distress call was made.
On board, there were 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers from 14 countries. That included 153 Chinese and 38 Malaysians.
Two Iranian male passengers, Pouria Nour Mohammad Mahread and Delavar Syed Mohammad Reza, were travelling on fake passports. Neither had any apparent links to terrorist groups.
No debris from the plane has been found in the international search.
Last confirmed communication with Indian Ocean satellite occurred at 08:11am, meaning plane continued to fly for seven hours after radar signal was lost.
At least 25 countries, including China, the US and Singapore, have now joined in the search for the missing plane.