Lifestyle & Belief

BBC filmmaker Jason Roberts accused of disturbing polar bears



Alan D. Wilson

A filmmaker behind a BBC documentary is accused of disturbing polar bears. In a documentary, "The Polar Bear Family and Me" shown on BBC2, host Gordon Buchanan spent 40 minutes hanging out with a group of polar bears in Norway. How did he avoid getting eaten? By remaining inside a plexi-glass box, the Sun reported.

The polar bears did not like this. In the film, a bear is seen trying to claw its way into the box.

That "ice cube" however broke the region's environmental regulations, the Independent reported. Svalbard Deputy Governor Lars Erik Alfheim explains that polar bears are protected by the government, but killed if they attack humans. If the polar had broken into the fake ice cube, it would have had to be killed. 

More from GlobalPost: Polar bear population healthy

 "When you make a cage with a man inside and a polar bear attacks it, that is a disturbance," Alfheim told the Independent.

Alfheim sent a letter to  Roberts informing him that he could be fined up to £5,700. BBC has so far not addressed the allegations. "We are aware of these concerns, but as they refer to on-going discussions between the parties in Norway it would not be appropriate to comment further at this stage," a BBC spokesperson said in a statement

Roberts has denied any wrongdoing. "I love them and have never bothered, disturbed or injured bears," he told Aftenposten