Katie Hopkins axed from Big Brother Australia following ‘reckless’ breach of quarantine rules

Australian Health Minister Greg Hunt said that the ‘strongest action should be taken’ against the far-right commentator

Katie Hopkins has been axed from the upcoming season of Australia’s Big Brother VIP after reportedly admitting to deliberately disobeying strict hotel quarantine rules.

The former Apprentice star turned far-right commentator arrived in Australia this week and was immediately placed into two weeks of quarantine in a government-mandated hotel.

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An investigation against Hopkins has been launched following her actions (Photo: Ian Forsyth/Getty Images)

Deliberately broke quarantine rules

On Saturday, the 46-year-old reportedly said in an Instagram live video she was deliberately disobeying quarantine rules by taunting guards and opening her hotel room door without a mask.

She later said in a post on the social media platform that she has “never broken quarantine”, adding that her “heart goes out to Australians and this brilliant country known for [its] sense of humour”.

Her actions quickly drew a wave of criticism and, on Sunday, the Seven Network – which airs the reality TV show – said she would not feature in the upcoming season.

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Hopkins branded ‘irresponsible and reckless’

It said in a statement: “Seven Network and Endemol Shine Australia confirm that Katie Hopkins is not part of Big Brother VIP.

“Seven and Endemol Shine strongly condemn her irresponsible and reckless comments in hotel quarantine.”

Earlier on Sunday, the country’s immigration minister Alex Hawke said the border force had launched an investigation.

Referring to a story on Hopkins’s actions, he said in a statement on Twitter: “With NSW & Victoria in lockdown, a reminder that temporary visa holders must obey public health orders.

“Australian Border Force is reviewing this matter. Where visa conditions are breached, individuals may face visa cancellation in accordance with the law.”

The NSW Police Force said it was aiding the border force review.

Australian visa given to Hopkins could be made invalid

A spokeswoman told the PA news agency: “The NSW Police Force is working closely with Australian Border Force to ascertain whether the visa to enter Australia provided to a 46-year-old woman from the United Kingdom remains valid.

“The NSW Police Force will assist with any operational requirements to assist the woman to return to her country of origin if it is deemed necessary.”

‘The strongest action should be taken’

Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Australia’s health minister Greg Hunt condemned Hopkins’s actions as “dangerous and irresponsible”.

He said: “These actions, if accurately reported, are dangerous, irresponsible and apparently deliberate.

“We know that at the moment the UK has the highest reported daily case numbers in the world and so this is a particularly dangerous and irresponsible action.

“Katie Hopkins has called it out herself, she’s boasted of this so last night I contacted the minister for home affairs Karen Andrews, but Karen had already referred the matter to the Australian Border Force. That was going to be my request but she was already onto this.

“Border Force is considering it right now. In my view, if the facts are borne out of deliberately exposing someone to potential contact with a person who has not completed quarantine, then the strongest action should be taken.

“My view is if the stories are accurate, instead of Big Brother watching Katie Hopkins, Katie Hopkins should be watching Big Brother from a long long way away.”

Additional reporting by PA

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