Helen Flanagan asks for respect for Stuart Hall

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Everyone's favourite celebrity dimwit Helen Flanagan has been adding to her reputation as the most intellectually-challenged bit-part actress on the circuit. The former Coronation Street star, recently acclaimed as FHM's sexiest woman in the UK, has suggested that everybody show a little "respect" to serial sex abuser Stuart Hall.

Flanagan, never one to think before she tweets, issued her less-than-profound observations on the Hall case. "I just think, that's an 83 year-old man, you could give him a heart attack. Have some respect." If her motivations seemed kind-hearted, her wording could have been smarter. Flanagan's spokesperson suggested that the actress wasn't aware that Hall had been convicted of the charges.

It adds to the litany of gaffes that confirm that Flanagan is even more ditzy than her soap character Rosie Webster. She apologised for issuing a publicity picture of herself with a gun to her head days after the Sandy Hook massacre in the USA. In March she posted on Instagram that she liked pictures of emaciated girls. When she was still with footballer Scott Sinclair, Flanagan tweeted how much she was bored of living in Wales, which was unfortunate as Sinclair was playing for Swansea at the time.

She has since split with Sinclair and the bust-up seems to have coincided with a remorseless campaign of appearing in the tabloids and lads' magazines in ever-more-revealing lingerie in what seems like an attempt to lure him back. Friends suggest the couple are likely to get back together, although Sinclair may have been exasperated with Flanagan's scatty ways - like calling the police to report an intruder when it was just her boyfriend coming home.

Flanagan's defence of Hall might have had other connotations. She recently spoke out in defence of Michael Le Vell, who played her father Kevin in Coronation Street. Le Vell faces child sex charges in September, and Flanagan issued a loyal statement of support.

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