UK news reporter Ellie Costello reveals a year of stalking hell at the hands of ex-airline star Leo Jones

A GB News presenter says she went through a year of hell after being stalked by a former airline star who guest-starred on her show.

Ellie Costello feared for her safety and suffered “panic attacks” after Leo Jones flooded her with spooky messages.

Miss Costello bravely revealed her ordeal after Jones, who rose to fame on ITV reality show Airline before reinventing himself as a “travel expert”, was given a five-year restraining order today.

The 41-year-old was also given a suspended sentence in St Albans Magistrates’ Court over her year-long campaign which left her in “constant stress” and “sleepless nights”.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, the 29-year-old said she never met the father-of-two in person – having interviewed him via Zoom – before he started showing up at her filming locations.

He once made it to her studio at 5am, but luckily she wasn’t at work that day.

GB news presenter Ellie Costello on the set. Miss Costello says she went through a year of hell after being stalked by a former guest on her show

GB news presenter Ellie Costello on the set. Miss Costello says she went through a year of hell after being stalked by a former guest on her show

Leo Jones outside St Albans Magistrates' Court. The 42-year-old has been given a five-year restraining order prohibiting him from contacting Miss Costello

Leo Jones outside St Albans Magistrates’ Court. The 42-year-old has been given a five-year restraining order prohibiting him from contacting Miss Costello

Jones, a self-proclaimed'travel expert', appeared on GB News where he was interviewed by Miss Costello (pictured).

Jones, a self-proclaimed ‘travel expert’, appeared on GB News where he was interviewed by Miss Costello (pictured).

“I cried in the witness room before I came into court today, it took everything in my body to do it, but I wanted to hear in court personally, in my own words, what this did to me,” she said.

Jones rose to fame in Airline, which ran for eight years through 2006, which followed the lives of EasyJet workers through the ups and downs of airport drama and turned them into minor stars.

Most recently, he presented himself as a “travel expert”, analyzing the industry under Covid-19 travel restrictions and was first interviewed by Miss Costello in GB News in August 2021.

After the broadcast, the two exchanged messages thanking each other but nothing more.

He was interviewed again by Miss Costello in October of that year, after which he suggested they present a travel show together, before later telling her, “Love seeing you in the morning X.”

When she didn’t respond, he followed with “You take my breath away,” and then, over the next three days, “You motivate me beyond words,” “I love seeing you,” and “You are my sunshine, I love you.” .” .

When Jones then asked, “How long do I have to wait to see you, is that driving me insane,” Miss Costello finally replied, telling him, “Please stop texting me, it’s beyond inappropriate.”

But the court heard the news broke for just three months before Jones, using a separate Instagram account, said: “I know I’m not supposed to message you but thank you for everything you do for the travel industry ‘ followed by ‘No one will ever come near you’.

Miss Costello then blocked all of his social media accounts from contacting hers.

In June of that year, Jones showed up at GB News’ Paddington studio and asked if she was available, before later sending flowers with a message: “Something to say a good morning from Leo X.”

Miss Costello says she received creepy messages from Jones that continued even after she told him to stop

Miss Costello says she received creepy messages from Jones that continued even after she told him to stop

Miss Costello also received an email from Mr Jones via her website which read: “Ellie I don’t want to be like a stalker. I have feelings for you, you were pivotal in my journey.”

On the day of the Queen’s funeral, as she broadcast from crowds on the Long Walk in Windsor, the reporter saw Jones “with his hands in his pockets, laughing and walking towards her”.

Desperate, she called the police but couldn’t get her words out, only stuttering “Stalker” as a panic attack set in. When the police calmed them down, he was gone.

Speaking bravely from behind a curtain before St Albans Magistrates Court yesterday, Miss Costello described the harrowing impact Jones had on her life and work, including being given a bodyguard.

Describing the incident on the day of the Queen’s funeral, Miss Costello said: “I was devastated after Leo Jones got so close to me.

“I was having a panic attack, I couldn’t breathe or speak, when I realized he had gotten so close to me I really freaked out. He must have followed me after watching my show that morning.

“It made me nervous getting out of cars and going to places by myself. In my job it’s impossible not to say where I am, I have a security officer who makes sure I feel safe at work.

Leo Jones rose to fame after appearing on the ITV reality show Airline, which followed easyJet staff

Leo Jones rose to fame after appearing on the ITV reality show Airline, which followed easyJet staff

“The security officer taught me how to contribute to my own security, wear less bright colors, tie my hair, position myself in relation to a street, look outward to see threats coming. I had to change my behavior at work and in everyday life.

“I don’t wish that on anyone. I just want to feel safe and secure at work.

“The last 16 months of my life have been one of constant worry, stress and strain.

“The thought of seeing his face makes me cry. I’m frustrated with myself for letting it go for so long.

She later told the Mail: “Some men watch reporters and think they know you. He clearly felt as he watched me that he knew me very well and that we were in a relationship.

“I felt like he was very delusional, even though we never met in person, he acted like we were in a relationship.

Jones pleaded guilty to causing the presenter serious distress, distress and mental distress and was sentenced to 26 weeks in prison suspended for two years and a five-year restraining order.

He is now his elderly father’s carer, the court heard.

Miss Costello added: “All I wanted was a restraining order because then I can feel safe. The fact that I’ve had one for five years is fantastic.”

https://www.soundhealthandlastingwealth.com/health/gb-news-reporter-ellie-costello-reveals-year-of-stalking-hell-at-hands-of-ex-airline-star-leo-jones/ UK news reporter Ellie Costello reveals a year of stalking hell at the hands of ex-airline star Leo Jones

Brian Ashcraft

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