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Australian DJ in tragic Kate prank named 'Top Jock'

world Updated: Jun 05, 2013 18:58 IST

AFP
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An Australian DJ who prank-called a London hospital in a stunt which had tragic consequences when a nurse committed suicide has been named a "Top Jock" by his bosses.

Michael Christian's employer Southern Cross Austereo Tuesday said it was "thrilled" to crown the DJ, who now works on Melbourne's Fox FM mornings slot, as one of its top presenters.

Christian endured a global backlash, along with his then co-host Mel Greig, in December when their prank call to a hospital caring for the pregnant wife of British royal Prince William ended so badly.

Australian RJ Michael Christian. (AFP Photo)

Indian-born nurse Jacintha Saldanha transferred the hoax call from the DJs pretending to be Queen Elizabeth II and William's father Prince Charles to a colleague who divulged details of Kate Middleton's severe morning sickness.

Prank call victim Jacintha laid to rest

The broadcast of the call made global headlines and Saldanha was found hanged three days later.

Tearful radio hosts apologise to nurse’s family for Kate hoax call

Australia's Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said the award was in poor taste given the circumstances.

"I think there's a bit of bad taste involved there," he told Melbourne radio station 3AW on Wednesday.

A joke gone wrong

"There were some very serious consequences of what was a prank, and to be seen to be rewarding people so soon after such an event, I think, is just in bad taste."

Australian radio DJs were trained 'not to air any prank calls': report

Nurse Jacintha blamed radio DJs in her suicide note

Christian hinted at the incident in his acceptance of the prize, which comes with a trip to Los Angeles for a studio tour.

"From the start I felt like I had something to prove to myself," he said in a statement.

"That regardless of all that's happened in the past few months I'm still at the top of my game. So it felt good to see my name at the top of the final leader board."

Australian RJs Michael Christian, Mel Greig. (AFP Photo)