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By Associated Press
BERLIN — A German journalist who was found to have fabricated numerous articles is being stripped of two awards he received in 2014 from CNN International, the broadcaster said Thursday.
In a statement to The Associated Press, CNN International said the independent panel of judges who awarded Claas Relotius the Journalist of the Year and Print Journalist of the Year awards four years ago decided unanimously to remove them following revelations about his fraud.
German magazine Der Spiegel, where Relotius worked as a freelancer and later full-time, said Wednesday that he had fabricated interviews and facts in at least 14 articles.
The publication, one of Germany’s leading news outlets, said the 33-year-old had committed journalistic fraud “on a grand scale” over a number of years, including fabricating elements of an article about an American woman who he said volunteered to witness the executions of death row inmates.
The publication said concerns were first raised in November by a fellow reporter who worked with Relotius on a story about a border militia in Arizona and discovered that supposed interviews had never taken place.
The German weekly said the fraud “marks a low point in the 70-year history of Der Spiegel.”
Relotius did not respond to a request for comment.