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The Independent Culture
Sibling rivalry

A Chinese 15-year-old was reported in the Yangcheng Evening News to have confessed to the murder of his 14-year-old brother and 11-year-old sister. The boy believed that his parents were too poor to afford to educate all their children. "If my parents only have to send one child to school, I'll be able to attend university," he was quoted as saying.

E-male

A woman in Little Rock, Arkansas, called police to complain that her husband had attacked her after she had erased an Internet communications program from his computer. She had discovered that he was using it to send sexually explicit messages to a virtual lover in Canada.

Great shoe robbery

In Nicaragua, 25 peasants in a truck had their shoes stolen by four armed men. The truck tyres were also shot out, forcing the victims to go barefoot for help.

Imprudence

A case opened in the High Court concerning a 15-year-old boy who had bought a scratch card for his mother, who subsequently collected the pounds 10,000 prize. Camelot brought the case to decide whether the sale was lawful. The judge admitted he did not know what a scratch card looked like. The mother's name was Prudence.

Privatised privies

The city of Fuyang in China has auctioned management contracts for 18 public toilets in a bid to boost lavatorial standards. Dramatic improvements have already been reported. "People wanting to spend a penny in China have been given the chance of a lifetime," an official report said.

Islamic lenience

An Iranian man had four fingers cut off after 12 convictions for theft.

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