The Theft Factor?
The Times' Dan Sabbagh reports (see ITV checks if phone votes were ignored in The X-Factor) that ITV is facing more problems after chief Michael Grade found ITV had stolen 8 million from viewers.
ITV now has new phone-in fraud allegations over the early series (2004) of the X Factor "talent" programme: once again viewer votes were ignored
A spokesman for ITV told the Times that they had "a number of issues we are considering".
Simon Cowell is not only "creator" of The X Factor, but his company (Syco TV) is co-producer of X-Factor.
Michael Grade tried last week to distract attention from the systematic fraud by reinstating the News at Ten, so his acceptance of "assurances from producers of the programmes" of ITV independently produced shows with premium rate lines will make his investigations look even shakier.