Joshua Pascoe leaving EastEnders

Joshua Pascoe is leaving his role as Ben Mitchell in 'EastEnders' when his current storyline comes to an end

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Joshua Pascoe

Joshua Pascoe

Joshua Pascoe is leaving 'EastEnders'.

The 16-year-old actor will depart his role as Ben Mitchell later this year at the end of his current storyline, which has seen him trying to cover up his killing of Heather Trott (Cheryl Fergison).

However, it is not believed the actor's exit is connected with his recent arrest in connection with an alleged sexual assault.

A source told the Daily Star Sunday newspaper: "Joshua was always going to leave at the end of his current contract due to his storyline.

"There was no way Ben could stay on the Square long-term after killing Heather. But how it all comes out is a closely guarded secret.

"The big exit was only finalised last week and everyone has been sworn to secrecy as to how he gets found out.

"But they are confident it will be the outcome everyone has been longing for."

A show spokesperson confirmed that Joshua - who replaced Charley Jones as Ben in 2010 - is leaving the soap.

They said: "It will come as no surprise to the viewers of 'EastEnders' that the character of Ben will be departing Walford when the truth finally emerges."

Viewers saw Ben leaving Heather's flat dripping in blood after killing her, but after no-one on Albert Square spotted him, his hardman dad Phil (Steve McFadden) destroyed the evidence by faking a burglary at Heather's home and taking away all evidence which linked the murder to Ben.

He came up with an alibi for the teen and told him to burn his clothes while the frame - which contained a picture of Heather and her pal Shirley - was dumped in the canal.

However, the strain of keeping the secret has got to Ben and he recently made an emotional confession to his horrified half-brother Ian Beale (Adam Woodyatt), who urged him to tell police.

It was revealed yesterday (26.05.12) that the actor was questioned by police at Wimbledon Police Station in South London on Thursday (24.05.12) over the alleged attack before being released on bail.

The exact details of the incident have not been released.

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