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Stories contained fabricated material; reporter dismissed

Published 5:27 pm, Friday, June 22, 2012
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A New Canaan News reporter has been dismissed after some of his stories were found to contain fabricated quotations and sources.

"We have found 25 stories written by Paresh Jha over the last year and a half that contain quotes from nonexistent sources," David McCumber, editorial director of the Hearst Connecticut Media Group, said Friday.

The problem was discovered when unusually spelled names were fact-checked by the editing staff. "When confronted, Jha admitted that he had fabricated the names and the quotes," McCumber said.

Every story Jha wrote during his 22-month tenure at the News is being checked for the validity of its sources, McCumber added.

The stories found to contain fabricated material have been removed from the newspaper's web site.

"We apologize to our readers," McCumber said. "A newspaper's credibility is its most important asset. This is a gross violation of our standards, and of the New Canaan News' well-earned reputation."