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'Take Me Out' star Aaron Withers 'convicted of assault, worked as escort'

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Paddy McGuinness presents Take Me Out

© ITV

A male contestant on Take Me Out has allegedly been revealed to have an assault conviction and worked as an escort.

Aaron Withers, who appeared on the ITV dating show on Saturday (January 7), pleaded guilty to attacking a man and his girlfriend at a pub in Somerset last year.

He was fined £200 and told to pay £50 compensation to both victims - who had apparently mocked the 28-year-old's height.

The Mirror also claims to have found Withers advertising his services on a website for escort agency Platinum Select, charging £50 an hour, £500 for an overnight visit or £1,500 for an entire weekend.

"It seemed like easy money to fund surf trips when I first came to London, just a bit of fun," he told the publication. "I was really skint and needed to earn cash. I certainly didn't offer any more than [a date]."

A Take Me Out spokesperson said: "Aaron signed up to the Platinum Select website in 2006, for a six-month period to try and make some money. He did not declare it to us when he applied to the series."

ITV said it was "disappointed" that Talkback Thames failed to discover Withers's past during background checks, while the production company itself confirmed it would "review procedures".

"During the application process we ask contestants to declare any convictions, and background checks are carried out on each individual, in line with industry practice," a talkbackThames spokesperson said.

"Aaron's criminal record did not come to light. We will be reviewing procedures going forward."

> 'Take Me Out' returns with 4.9m
> Paddy McGuinness: 'New Take Me Out girls are the best yet'

Watch host Paddy McGuinness discuss Take Me Out with Digital Spy below:

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