Comedian Al Porter has broken his silence for the first time since returning to the public eye since 2017.
Porter, whose real name is Alan Kavanagh, saw his career take a nose dive, following allegations of sexual misconduct in 2017. These allegations have subsequently turned out to be unproven.
Porter walked away from a court as a free man in 2019, after the charges were dropped. He has always denied the allegations.
Calling his recent time as a "wake up call", the Irish comedian has now resurfaced, and is now eyeing a return to comedy.
"In November 2017, a series of tweets making allegations against me snowballed into newspaper articles, and eventually more", Porter wrote. "I took these issues in my personal life very seriously and I decided to walk away from all my work commitments as I couldn’t possibly keep working and deal with everything else too".
"From the age of 19 my life had been a runaway train, I had been burning the candle at both ends, leaving me overwhelmed and unable to cope".
"At the time all I wanted to do was go home to my family, but I couldn’t even do that as the media were outside my Mam and Dad’s house. In the space of 48 hours, it felt like I’d lost everything".
Al Porter also revealed that despite contacting the Gardaí on several occasions, it took a full year before he discovered what he was being accused of. He also claimed that he received death threats online.
"It was another year before the Director of Public Prosecutions withdrew the charge against me. I wouldn’t wish those two years on anyone", Porter said.
"In that time, I've had death threats, ‘funny’ mocked up headlines saying I've committed suicide, that kind of thing…. this is actually something my family and I have had to get used to".
Despite protesting his innocence, Al Porter admitted that he behaved poorly, letting down the people closest to him, calling himself an "idiot". He also paid homage to his partner who "has been with me since before and through all this".
"Career wise, I was composed. But in my personal life I could be a mess, oblivious to the times I was obnoxious", Porter explained. "I wasn’t considerate enough of others because I was too busy thinking the world revolved around me".
"Not to put too fine a point on it, I was an idiot. I let my family and friends down".
He also added, "I let my community down, Tallaght, the comedy scene and the LGBTQ community".
"I let down the people I worked with. And I let down the people who came to my shows and have always supported me".
Porter has now revealed that he is living a "quiet life", having been a "long time sober".
Eyeing a return to comedy, Porter added, "Over the years there’ve been offers to go back on stage, but I just wasn't ready".
"I expected the time away to be shorter, and the lockdown years played their part too".
"Now, I’d like to make people laugh again. Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future".
"Mine starts now".