A British tabloid is claiming to have exposed the secrets of what it has dubbed ‘Santa’s sweat shop’, in article alleging that elves are being forced to work for less than minimum wage in horrendous conditions while Santa himself enjoys a playboy lifestyle. “This Christmas, just bear in mind that those gifts you are enjoying were produced by a workforce enduring slave labour conditions,” Lester Dentine – who allegedly infiltrated Santa’s North Pole factory – claimed in The Shite this week. “Not only are the elves there paid a pittance, but they are constantly monitored – if their productivity slips they can find themselves being severely whipped by the overseers!” Persistent offenders might even find themselves dragged, naked, through the snow by one of Santa’s reindeer or, worse, tied up in his sack, dipped into freezing arctic water through a hole in the ice, before being beaten with a Christmas tree. “It’s a brutal regime,” Dentine – who claims to have secured a position on the production line through a well known UK employment agency – claims. “Toilet breaks aren’t allowed – if you can’t manage to relieve yourself during your ten minute lunch break, then you have to go at your post. It’s bloody disgusting – elves are being forced to work standing in heaps of their own excrement!”

Health and safety at the factory is also non-existent, Dentine alleges. “Hardly a day goes by without some poor bastard falling into the automatic wrapping machine and being strangled with ribbons or suffocated with wrapping paper, or being gored on the antlers of a rampaging reindeer,” he says. “There are no guard rails around the machinery, so elvish beards are always getting caught in it, with usually fatal consequences.” The factory is also an extreme fire hazard, being full of highly combustible materials. “One stray spark or dropped cigarette and the whole place would go go up like a tinderbox,” Dentine rages. “While I was there one of the storerooms, full of cheap plastic toys, caught fire after an accident with a flaming Christmas pudding – there were blazing elves running all over the place, screaming in agony and igniting secondary fires throughout the factory!” According to Dentine, there are, shockingly, no proper fire precautions in place. “There aren’t even any fire extinguishers, not even strategically placed buckets of water,” he says. “When all those elves caught fire in the storeroom, they just threw snowballs at them to try and put them out!” Worse still, no proper medical treatment is offered to those workers injured in accidents. “Sure, they say that they are taking them to the sick bay,” Dentine says. “But the injured are never seen again. Management say that they have been given medical retirement – in reality, they’ve dumped them outside in the snow. If they aren’t eaten by polar bears or don’t freeze to death, then the factory ‘nurse’ goes out and strangles them with tinsel.”

But while his elves are slaving away, Santa himself is enjoying a life of luxury in his penthouse, far above the factory floor. “It’s just one long orgy for him,” says Dentine. “He only works one day a year – the rest of it, he’s living the rock and roll lifestyle – all women, drugs and decadence.” The seasonal icon apparently regularly has top class hookers flown in by sleigh, with copious amounts of drugs similarly shipped in. “The sick old bastard thinks it is funny to have his cocaine delivered in boxes wrapped like Christmas presents and likes to sprinkle it on top of mince pies like sugar, before snorting it off,” a disgusted Dentine told the tabloid. “As for the way he uses the ornaments from his tree as sex toys – well, it’s just a deplorable debasement of the symbols of Christmas. I’m just glad that all those kiddies who worship him never see him crawling around his penthouse in disarray, bedraggled beard full of cocaine and vomit, no trousers and groping hookers – it would destroy all of their illusions!” Santa’s depravities aren’t confined to his penthouse, though. “After he’s done his rounds every Christmas, he goes off to some top hotel for a month,” reveals Dentine. “He rents a whole floor, runs up huge bills and trashes the whole place. I’ve heard some horrendous stories of reindeer running amok, shitting all over presidential suites, armies of naked hookers with miniature bells clamped to their nipples playing Christmas tunes by jiggling their tits and toilets blown to bits with high explosive crackers, just for kicks! He’s been banned from over twenty top hotels globally!”

Dentine alleges that Santa isn’t just decadent, but also idle. “Despite only working one day a year, often even that seems too much for the lazy bastard,” he says. “One year he just couldn’t be arsed to deliver any presents, so he faked his own death with a crashed sleigh on the slopes of Mount Snowden. Kids all over the world were traumatised when a charred body in a Santa suit was found in the blazing wreck!” In several countries the military had to be mobilised to deliver presents in order to stave off riots, before it emerged, on New Year’s Eve, that the body wasn’t Santa’s. “He realised that he couldn’t keep up the deception, so he claimed that that he’d been mugged, hit over the head and stripped of his costume and his sleigh stolen,” explains Dentine. “He claimed to have had amnesia for a week. To this day, nobody knows who the body in the burning sleigh really was – probably some tramp he murdered and stuck in the wreck.” Dentine has also heard rumours that this year Santa is considering outsourcing his Christmas deliveries to courier firms. “Which means that nobody will get their presents as it will all be left to the likes of Hermes or Yodel,” he opines. “If they are lucky, they might get their gifts thrown over their back fence or left in the bins, but most likely the bastards supposed to be delivering them will just drink the brandy left for Santa, eat the mince pies, take a dump on their living room carpets and sell the presents on eBay.”

Dentine’s story has been called into doubt on several grounds, most notably that most of the goods given as Christmas gifts are clearly produced in factories in China and bought either through regular stores or Amazon, rather than coming direct from Santa’s alleged factory. “Obviously, I’m not talking about stuff like Playstations and mobile phones,” Dentine angrily retorts. “The stuff he produces is all the cheap tat you find at the bottom of your stocking, bought as an afterthought to pad it out!” The very existence of Santa’s factory has also been called into question, with sceptics pointing out that satellite imagery of the North Pole area shows no evidence of any such structures. “Well, duh!” says Dentine. “Of course it won’t show up – it’s magic, for God’s sake!” Finally, sceptics have expressed incredulity at the idea that Dentine, who stands over six feet tall, could have infiltrated the factory, if it even existed, disguised as an elf. “Look, these people are just stereotyping elves by assuming that they are short,” he says. “Besides, I wore a set of rubber pointed ears.”