SHANE Richie has been forced to apologise after he sparked fury by branding the Thomas Cook collapse “karma”.
The EastEnders star made the shocking remark just hours after the travel giant went bust, leaving up to 150,000 Brits stranded abroad and 21,000 workers jobless.
Richie, 54, had threatened to sue the travel giants before they went bust after he suffered a holiday from hell in June.
But he has now performed a U-turn and apologised for the tweet.
The actor wrote: “My comment was a dig at faceless management and not the thousands of employees who are sadly losing their jobs due to mismanagement .
“My thoughts are with the shop/ground staff who I’ve only admiration for ..there the ones who suffer today ..apologies if it read any other way xx”.
‘SHOCKING HUMAN BEING’
Richie was slammed on social media for his “disgusting” karma tweet yesterday as 150,000 Brits were left stranded abroad.
One woman tweeted: “What a nice thing to say, my husband is one of the thousands of people who have lost their jobs you p**** and by the way you’re a s*** actor.”
Another wrote: “What a complete c***womble you are. What a totally nasty and cruel thing to say. How many families now have to worry about finances, putting food on the table?”
And another raged: “Not nice have a thought for all the staff who have lost their jobs shame on you.”
One woman said: “Yeah, 20,000 people losing their jobs is karma cos your entitled a*** didn’t get a holiday you wanted. What a shocking human being you are.”
One person branded him a ‘shocking human being’[/caption]
Around 150,000 stranded Brits are being flown home from 53 destinations in 17 countries in the rescue mission costing £100 million.
A fleet of 40 aircraft has been charted by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to lead the repatriation mission – an operation twice as big as that launched two years ago when Monarch Airlines collapsed – using jets from as far away as Malaysia.
It is expected to last two weeks and free flights will be offered to the majority of Thomas Cook’s 150,000 passengers currently abroad.
All future Thomas Cook bookings have been cancelled, affecting around one million people, with the rescue mission expected to cost the taxpayer up to £600 million.
The company’s 21,000 employees, including 9,000 in the UK, have been made redundant.
Speaking to The Sun in June, Richie, who plays Alfie Moon on the BBC1 soap, revealed he was suing the high street firm after booking Mexico’s five-star Moon Palace Resort for a two-week family holiday with his in-laws.
‘HOLIDAY FROM HELL’
The dad of five said: “It was a holiday from hell. I was recommended the five-star resort. It cost thousands. It was supposed to be a holiday of a lifetime. I was taking my in-laws for 17 nights. It was my worst nightmare. It was f***ing horrendous. I got spanked by them.”
Complaining about the party atmosphere he ranted: “At just 10.30am in the morning we were all sat by the luxury pool and there was a DJ on with drum and bass. They didn’t mention that in the programme when we were booking it. Loads of things happened.”
Shane added that he even shortened his return to the BBC1 soap because of his commitments to the trip.
It was a holiday from hell. I was recommended the five-star resort. It cost thousands. It was supposed to be a holiday of a lifetime
He added: “I had the holiday booked and the dates were clashing. The day after I filmed I left the country to go to Mexico. ”
Today, Thomas Cook staff were seen hugging each other in tears at the company’s headquarters in Cambridgeshire this morning.
Many looked tearful as they arrived at the headquarters, which employs around 1,000 people.
The 178-year-old British travel firm had until 11.59pm last night to pay the £200million it owed its creditors or else they’d go under.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson described the liquidation of Thomas Cook as a “very difficult situation” and vowed his Government would do its “level best” to get Brit holidaymakers home.
Only those booked on package holidays are officially protected under the Air Travel Organisers’ Licence (Atol) scheme.
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Those travelling on “flight only” breaks would normally be expected to find and pay for their own return flights.
Speaking in June, a source close to Thomas Cook said: “Shane complained about holidaymakers taking pictures of him, having to get up at 5.30am to put towels on sunbeds, loud music by the pool and queuing to get eggs in the morning.”
Thomas Cook insisted staff had tried to make Richie’s stay more comfortable.
Richie plays Alfie Moon on the BBC1 soap EastEnders[/caption]
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