Chris Hughes has claimed that his altercation with a photographer after the National Television Awards was “self-defence” after pictures showed him clashing with a paparazzi.
In a statement posted on his Instagram story, Hughes, 27, said that a paparazzi called him names and “physically tr[ied]” to start a brawl, prompting him to retaliate “badly.”
“I want to address last night’s altercation,” he wrote. “I was having an amazing night celebrating the award my girlfriend deservedly won.
“After coming out of our hotel a particular paparazzi decided to repeatedly call me a name I wouldn’t call my worst enemy, and physically try and start an altercation.
“As everyone can see I retaliated back badly to this which I totally regret. I’m human. No different to anyone else.”
He went on to stress that the row was “only in self defence” and shared his hope that the “people I care about, including my followers, family and friends can understand and forgive me.”
He went on to apologise for distracting from Nelson’s successful night, adding: “This night was about Jesy’s win and I am sorry if I distracted anyone from this.
“Ultimately, I’m the proudest boyfriend ever and want to congratulate my amazing girlfriend for a deserving win. I am so proud of you.”
After winning her first NTA, Nelson, 28, tearfully thanked Hughes in her acceptance speech for “bringing me up every day and making me feel confident.”
Her documentary, which aired in September on BBC Three, became the channel’s most-watched factual title since it moved online in 2016.