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Coronation Street star suspended over masked rap video

image captionFountain said the videos had been made "over a year ago"

Coronation Street actor Chris Fountain has been suspended by the soap after being exposed as a masked rapper who posted strongly worded videos online.

The YouTube clips purportedly showed him rapping about raping women and committing violent acts in the guise of his alter-ego 'The Phantom'.

An ITV spokesperson said the content was "totally unacceptable", adding that the 25-year-old had been suspended.

In a statement, Fountain apologised for any offence he had caused.

"I am deeply ashamed by the lyrics and very much regret my behaviour," said the actor, who plays Tommy Duckworth on the show.

"The videos were made over a year ago when I was experimenting with music and I've not done anything like it since, nor will I."

The clips, which are no longer available to view, featured Fountain wearing a Halloween mask, miming stabbing motions and claiming he was "bored with fame".

His involvement in the videos was revealed in Friday's edition of The Sun, which claimed it had brought them to the attention of his employers.

"ITV find both the language used and the views expressed in this video totally unacceptable," said the ITV spokesperson.

"Chris Fountain has been suspended pending further inquiries into this matter."

Previously seen as Justin Burton in Hollyoaks, Bradford-born Fountain joined Coronation Street in 2011.

In an interview with the Daily Star earlier this month, the actor expressed uncertainty regarding his future on the programme.

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