In a Dec. 28 story, The Associated Press, relying on information from Van Morrison's Hollywood-based publicist and his official Web site, reported erroneously that the Irish singer had a new baby boy with a woman identified as "his wife, GiGi."
Morrison said Thursday in a statement through his Dublin public relations firm that the report was "utterly without foundation" and planted by an unknown hacker. Morrison said he remains "very happily married" to former Miss Ireland Michelle Rocca, with whom he has two children, aged 3 and 2.
An e-mail sent to the AP on Thursday by the office of Morrison's Hollywood publicist, Phil Lobel, said the publicist's Dec. 28 announcement of the birth was based on information from Morrison's hacked Web site and that "all those with Van Morrison regret any confusion this may have caused."
Morrison's statement, issued by the Dublin branch of the U.S.-based public relations firm Fleishman-Hillard Inc., said his Web site has been hacked at least twice in recent months. The statement was issued by John Saunders, senior partner of the firm in Europe, who confirmed to the AP the authenticity of Thursday's statement.
(This version CORRECTS Corrects spelling of Rocca in 2nd graf. Editors who used BC-US--People-Van Morrison, sent Dec. 28 under a Los Angeles dateline, are asked to use the following story. Moving on general news and entertainment services.)