Frankie Cocozza was axed from The X Factor for boasting about taking cocaine, according to reports.
The Sun claims that the reality show contestant broke one of the show’s ‘golden rules’ by discussing his use of Class A drugs in front of production staff.
Cocozza, who had previously been lectured by the show’s bosses for his reported all-night partying sessions and womanising, said:
I would like to apologise to Gary [Barlow], my fellow contestants and everyone who has voted for me, but, as of today, I will no longer be in The X Factor. My life during the show has gone out of control and my behaviour off stage has over-stepped the rules of the competition. I no longer deserve my place in the show, so I am therefore leaving.
He went on to add: “I would like to thank everyone who has supported me.”
His former mentor, Take That singer Barlow, said: “Frankie has apologised publicly as well as personally to me and the producers for his actions that led to him leaving the show. I’m hugely disappointed that he’s thrown away an opportunity like this after working so hard to get here.
“I’m sorry to see him go as we’ve been through a lot together in such a short time. I hope Frankie continues to look to me as a friend and supporter and works it all out, picks himself up and somehow tries to turn this into a positive.”
Earlier, a source from the show had insisted that Cocozza “only himself had to blame” for his exit and had left the producers “no option but to axe him”.
Senior staff on The X Factor are reportedly “paralysed with fear” due to the show’s slide in ratings, and are said to be discussing switching around the judge’s categories to boost viewing figures.