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Kevin Donovan denies claims he isn't consulting victims for upcoming Ghomeshi book

05/15/2015 07:00 EDT | Updated 05/15/2016 05:59 EDT
Toronto Star investigative journalist Kevin Donovan says freelancer Jesse Brown's claims that he is not consulting the women he interviewed for his upcoming book on Jian Ghomeshi is wrong.  

Donovan spoke to the CBC on Thursday in an interview with On the Coast host Stephen Quinn.

Freelancer Jesse Brown, with whom you've shared a byline, has come out in the Guardian saying you've refused to consult with the woman who came forward. Can you give any assurance at all that those women won't be identified in the book?

"Oh absolutely. I've said that from the very start in the same way as the stories we've published in the Toronto Star  never identified anybody. We would never do that. I'm a career journalist, I've been doing this for 35 years. I've dealt with all sorts of sensitive cases with sources and you never identify them. You stick to your promises. He is wrong when he says that we are not consulting with people."

"We are doing our best to be as sensitive as we can, it is a very important issue. But also this story started a national conversation on issues of sexual violence and the troubles and issues with reporting it and the Toronto Star has done a great deal of work on this and I'm hoping to advance that a little bit in the book by getting more of the information out about why it is so difficult to report."

"But absolutely I would never, ever identify a source. That would just be wrong and people who know me know that."

But aren't there details in the book where someone who might be close to one of those people would be able to piece it together and say 'Oh, it's them we are talking about'?

"Well in the same way we did the stories, there are details that you could never include and I'm not going to say them on the air for obvious reasons. You just have to be very, very careful and I am taking great pains to do that."

"The book is not out yet. Jesse Brown made his comments without reading the book. It was quite interesting that someone would do that. But there we go back to the social media aspect and the bloggers and people not waiting to see the final product."

To hear the full interview with Kevin Donovan, listen to the audio labelled Concerns over upcoming book on Jian Ghomeshi

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