The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland has appointed a former BBC Northern Ireland Controller to investigate the RTÉ Prime Time Investigates programme ''Mission to Prey''.

Anna Carragher, who was previously editorially responsible for all BBC Northern Ireland output, will investigate the programme, which was aired on 23 May of this year.

The investigation will examine whether the programme segment dealing with Fr Kevin Reynolds breached the Broadcasting Act in terms of fairness, objectivity and impartiality.

Last month, Fr Reynolds was awarded undisclosed damages and received an apology after RTÉ wrongly accused him of sexually abusing a girl and fathering a child in Kenya.

RTÉ News & Current Affairs Managing Director Ed Mulhall has stepped aside from his role for the duration of the BAI inquiry, as has Editor of Current Affairs Ken O'Shea.

Director General Noel Curran and Chairman of the RTÉ Board Tom Savage have confirmed RTÉ's full co-operation with the investigation process specified by the BAI.

In a statement, RTÉ said it "acknowledges and notes the terms and scope published by the BAI and by Ms Carragher and will comply with all requirements as specified and timetabled".