A London councillor who appeared as a contestant on The Apprentice has said a gay dating profile with his picture on it is a hoax.

Ben Stanberry is a Conservative councillor in Richmond-upon-Thames. He suspects the fake profile was posted by a disgruntled former student.

In the last series of BBC reality show The Apprentice Mr Stanberry was the first contestant to be fired by Sir Alan Sugar.

The profile describes him as “young, handsome and gay,” and contains detailed descriptions of sexual practices.

He told the Richmond Twickenham Times:

“It’s stupid, it’s a nuisance, it means I have got to spend time tracking down the owners of the website.” He will ask them to remove the profile.

“This sort of thing happens to lots of people, it’s identity theft and it’s a huge issue,” he added.

“It’s identity theft to somehow try and harm or hurt your reputation.”