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Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 August 2005, 15:04 GMT 16:04 UK
Extras episode is leaked online
Samuel L Jackson (c) stars in the latest episode of Extras
The BBC is to investigate an internet leak of an episode of sitcom Extras starring Samuel L Jackson.

The episode of the Ricky Gervais comedy, due to air on Thursday, was discovered on a Swedish website where people could download it.

The show is still available via two websites, although the BBC said it had asked for it to be removed.

A spokeswoman said the BBC took any infringement of copyright "seriously" and was now investigating the matter.

Extras is Gervais' second sitcom, along with co-creator Stephen Merchant, and follows their success with The Office.

Largely thanks to his double Golden Globe win in 2004, Gervais was able to secure Hollywood actors including Jackson and Ben Stiller to appear in his new series as exaggerated versions of themselves.

Kate Winslet and British comedian Les Dennis have also taken part in the series, with their episodes already screened.

While the problem of music being leaked online has been a problem for some years, it is a fairly new phenomenon for TV programmes to make their way on to the internet ahead of broadcast.

The BBC was forced to investigate when the first in the new series of Doctor Who reached the internet three weeks before it launched on BBC One.

A man was tracked down by the BBC's partner in the show, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and sacked from his job.

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