The News Matrix: Monday 24 February 2014


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The Independent Online

Extradition row over captured drugs lord

A row has broken out between Mexico and the US over Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman Loera, one of the world’s biggest drug lords, arrested on Saturday after 13 years on the run. America wants to hold him,  citing better security. Mexico says he should be tried on home soil. MORE

14 tons of cigarettes washed ashore

Police are patrolling a beach in Devon after a shipping container carrying millions of cigarettes washed ashore. The container  is believed to be carrying around 14 tons of cigarettes. Police and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency have issued a warning to treasure hunters.

Killer goes on run after day out of jail

A convicted killer is on the run after absconding while on day release from jail. Paul Maxwell, 49, disappeared while visiting Rochdale town centre on Friday with prison staff. He was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1996 for the murder of 85-year-old Joe Smales.

Milan residents adopt 400 infants

Some 400 local infants have been “adopted” in the past six months, a Milan-based charity has revealed. A spokesman for Aiutare i bambini (Help the Children) said: “Unfortunately Italy is one of the European countries in which levels of child poverty are highest.” MORE

Fairtrade says low prices are bananas

Price wars are keeping the cost of bananas so low that farmers risk going bust, the Fairtrade Foundation says. UK supermarket prices have halved in the past decade while the growers’ costs have doubled.

‘Prosecute blue-chip firms that spy on us’

Blue-chip companies accused of using private investigators to obtain information illegally about members of the public should be brought before the crown courts, the information commissioner has said. But Christopher Graham warned MPs that he must not be rushed in his investigation because the companies had “good lawyers” to dispute the accusations. MORE

Last beret-maker struggles to survive

A 174-year-old beret-maker is fighting to keep the classic headgear French. Laulhère is the country’s sole maker of the traditional hats but cheap knock-offs from abroad have presented a challenge. Mark Saunders, the head of sales, said: “Only our traditional beret doesn’t retain odours.” MORE

Queen’s manor is the most polluted in UK

The Queen lives in the most polluted part of Britain, new figures show.  Air pollution in Grosvenor Place, which is near Buckingham Palace, is four times worse than the EU legal limit. The average annual level of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) is 152  micrograms per cubic metre of air. The European Union limit is 40.

First view of River’s last performance

The last performance by the actor River Phoenix, who died in 1993, aged 23, while shooting Dark Blood, will finally be screened during the Glasgow Film Festival. The film has been assembled by director George Sluizer, 81. MORE

Swearing fans delay screening of match

Foul language from the crowd at the match between Ross County and  St Mirren that was picked up by the microphones forced BBC Alba, the Scottish gaelic channel, to delay broadcasting the game until after the watershed on Saturday night.

Last Sound of Music family member dies

Maria von Trapp, the final member of the Trapp Family Singers who inspired The Sound of Music, has died aged 99 at her home in Vermont, US. MORE

Praise for gay basketball player

Gay rights charity Stonewall has praised gay basketball player Jason Collins and his team, the Brooklyn Nets, after Collins became the first openly gay player in NBA history.