The Daily Star was selling 400,000 when we bought it, it now sells around 800,000.
As this blog pointed out at the time, his figures weren't accurate. The Daily Star was actually selling 627,317 copies per day in November 2000, when he bought it. The October 2011 ABCs showed the figure was around 658,690 at the time he spoke.
In fact, the Daily Star's circulation hasn't been above 800,000 since September 2010.
When giving evidence to the Leveson Inquiry yesterday, Desmond admitted:
We see the figures daily
So surely he would be able to give Lord Leveson a more accurate picture of the Star's circulation? Not exactly:
We've invested more in the Daily Star than, you know -- just look at the product. It's fantastic. At the end of the day the reader decides, and 11 years ago we were selling about 400,000 copies a day and now we're selling 700, 800,000 copies a day in a mature newspaper market, shall we say. I think it's fantastic what we've done on the Daily Star, but the readers have decided, you know, they can't get enough of it.
If someone genuinely believes the Daily Star is 'fantastic', it's hard to take much else they say seriously.
Not unsurprisingly, he simply repeated the same incorrect figures he'd used before. If he does see the figures so often, how can he get them so wrong?
Moreover, the latest ABCs - released today - are even worse news for Desmond. They show that in December 2011, the Daily Star's circulation was 616,498 copies per day.
That means the Star is now selling, on average, 11,000 fewer copies per day than when Desmond acquired the paper just over eleven years ago.
I think it's fantastic what we've done on the Daily Star, but the readers have decided, you know, they can't get enough of it.
(Meanwhile the circulation of the Express has dropped from 985,253 in November 2000 to 596,415 in December 2011 while he's been owner.)
(More on Desmond's evidence from Steven Baxter and The Guardian, while Roy Greenslade looks at the media's reaction to it.)