Page last updated at 11:00 GMT, Sunday, 29 April 2007 12:00 UK

Big Brother police costs revealed

Shilpa Shetty
Shetty took 63% of the vote to win Celebrity Big Brother

Police investigations connected to the Big Brother television programme have cost about £350,000 over the last six years, it has been revealed.

And the inquiry into alleged racism in the latest Celebrity Big Brother series cost £14,503, Herts Police said.

But production company Endemol, which makes the show at Elstree Studios, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, is meeting the costs.

It follows a BBC News Freedom of Information request to Herts Police.

2002: £13,665
2003: £33,467
2004: £59,788
2005: £59,814
2006: £115,983
2007 (so far): £46,771

A police spokesperson told the BBC News website: "Shortly after the programme began, it was decided that, where it was appropriate, Hertfordshire Constabulary would recover the costs for any potential investigations arising from Big Brother in addition to the overall policing charges levied on Endemol."

The figures show that policing costs have risen from £13,655 in 2002 to £115,983 in 2006.

So far £46,771 has been spent on policing Big Brother in 2007.

In March, it was decided no criminal charges would be brought in connection with the Big Brother racism row. The Crown Prosecution Service decided that what occurred was "clearly offensive" but "not criminal".

The inquiry centred on a series of clashes between Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty and three other housemates - Jade Goody, Jo O'Meara and Danielle Lloyd.

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