Journalist says 'sorry if I have caused distress' about Boyzone-related article

Daily Mail writer Jan Moir has issued an apology of sorts for offending the family of the late Boyzone singer Stephen Gately.

Moir wrote an article published the day before Gately’s funeral (October 16), writing that his death was not a “natural one”. The article was branded homophobic by some fans, while Boyzone’s record label, Polydor, complained to the Press Complaints Commission about it.

Today (October 23) in another Daily Mail article Moir addressed the complaints. “To them [Gately‘s family], I would like to say sorry if I have caused distress by the insensitive timing of the column, published so close to the funeral,” she wrote.

She went on to deny that she was homophobic. “Absolutely none of this had anything to do with his sexuality,” she wrote. “If he had been a heterosexual member of a boy band, I would have written exactly the same article.

“Yet despite this, many have interpreted my words as a ‘bigoted rant’ and suggested that my motive was to insinuate that Stephen died ‘because he was gay’. Anyone who knows me will vouch that I have never held such poisonous views.”

Over 25,000 members of the public have lodged complaints about the article.