Coronation Street star Bill Roache has said he is "very sorry" over his comments on victims of paedophiles which seemed to suggest they were being punished for past sins.
Roache (80), who has played Ken Barlow in the ITV soap for more than 50 years, had told New Zealand's One News that the public should not be judgmental but be "totally forgiving" of people who have committed child sex crimes.
In a statement, the actor said: "I would like to say that I am very sorry for any offence that has been caused as a result of my comments.
"I would never say that victims of sexual offences are in any way responsible for the abuse they have suffered and I offer my deepest apologies.
"I had no intention of causing any kind of distress as a result of my interview and I offer my utmost sympathies to anyone affected by sexual offences and paedophilia."
The NSPCC called his original comments "bizarre".