The News Matrix: Thursday 10 January 2013


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The Independent Online

Stephen Lawrence's brother sues police

Stephen Lawrence's brother has taken legal action against Scotland Yard, saying he has been stopped up to 25 times because of his skin colour. Stuart Lawrence, 35, said he had been targeted in a sustained campaign of harassment and one officer told him he was "naturally suspicious" of him. The force has called on the independent police watchdog to consider the case. MORE

Delay in new aircraft 'hindering the RAF'

There are "critical gaps" in the armed forces' air operations, according to a report from the Whitehall spending watchdog. The National Audit Office blamed delays in delivering new aircraft for problems in the RAF's ability to carry out crucial tasks. MORE

Christopher Tappin jailed for 33 months

British businessman Christopher Tappin was sentenced to 33 months in a US jail yesterday. The 66-year-old struck a plea bargain with American prosecutors last year over allegations that he sold air defence missile batteries that he believed were destined for Iran. MORE

Alleged torture victims get payout

More than 70 Iraqi prisoners, who allege they were tortured in Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, are being paid £3.6m by the subsidiary of a US defence contractor accused of conspiring to torture. It is the first time that prisoners have received money in such a case.

Sri Lankan maid beheaded for crime

Saudi Arabia beheaded a young Sri Lankan housemaid yesterday despite appeals by her home country. Rizana Nafeek was sentenced to death for the killing of a baby left in her care in 2005. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa had asked for clemency. MORE

Marr in hospital after suffering stroke

Andrew Marr, the TV presenter and journalist, has had a stroke, the BBC said yesterday. The 53-year-old presenter of the Andrew Marr show was taken to hospital where doctors said he was responding to treatment.

Ferry collision leaves 50 injured

At least 50 people were injured when a commuter ferry hit a dock in New York's financial district yesterday morning. Two passengers were left critically injured when a corner of the ferry was ripped open and people fell on top of one another screaming and crying.

Obama appoints new Treasury Secretary

President Barack Obama is set to appoint Jack Lew, the current White House Chief of Staff, as the new Treasury Secretary. He will replace Tim Geithner, who has held the job since 2009. The appointment will put Mr Lew at the centre of the debate on raising the federal debt ceiling.

Bowie disqualified from singles chart

The first new track from David Bowie in a decade is not eligible for the UK singles chart. The Official Charts Company said it cannot distinguish people who bought "Where Are We Now?" from those who got it free by ordering his new album.

Mourning for former Director-General

The former BBC Director-General Alasdair Milne has died at the age of 82. Mr Milne led the corporation between 1982 and 1987 after a 28-year BBC career as the producer of shows such as Tonight and That Was The Week That Was.

Secret penguin colony discovered

A hidden 9,000-strong colony of emperor penguins has received its first human visitors. Scientists from the British Antarctic Survey discovered the colony of 1m tall penguins from satellite images. The birds' toilet habits gave away their location as they left faecal stains on the ice.

Gun groups plan inauguration protest

Conservative groups have planned a "Gun Appreciation Day" to coincide with President Barack Obama's inauguration on 21 January, just a month after the Sandy Hook school shooting. Citizens are being urged to go to their local gun store armed with copies of the Constitution.

Anteater becomes a mum again

A rare giant anteater at Chester zoo has given birth to a second baby. A zoo spokesman said the new arrival, born on 23 December, was "good news for the species". It was the second specimen born as part of an international breeding programme for the vulnerable animal.

Spielberg wins 10 nominations

Steven Spielberg's biopic of Abraham Lincoln led the field with 10 Bafta nominations announced yesterday. Les Miserables and Life of Pi received nine each, while Skyfall secured eight, with Dame Judi Dench and Javier Bardem nominated for their supporting roles. MORE

No reprieve for TB 'death row' elephants

François Hollande has refused to "pardon" two zoo elephants whose death sentence has provoked the actress Brigitte Bardot to threaten to move to Russia. The animals were diagnosed with TB and must be put down by Friday. The French President said he could not intervene.

WW2 soldier reunited with kit

A US soldier who served in France during the Second World War has been reunited with his army duffel bag nearly seven decades after it went missing. The package was found by a 16-year-old French boy, who tracked down 92-year-old William Kadar to return the kit.

Half of the world's food is thrown away

Up to half of all the food produced in the world ends up being thrown away, a new report by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers claims. The waste, weighing two billion tonnes, is caused by poor infrastructure and storage facilities, over-strict sell-by dates and "get-one-free" offers.

Thrillseeker dies after zorb accident

A man has died after what was supposed to be a thrilling ride inside a giant inflatable ball. Another man was badly injured when the pair's "zorb" ball bounced down the mountainside. The ride, in Russia's Caucasus mountains, has prompted demands for a safety crackdown.

Vomiting bug is new norovirus strain

A new strain of norovirus has been responsible for the majority of cases of the winter vomiting bug, health experts said. The new variant of the bug, called Sydney 2012, has become the "dominant strain" and will have caused many of the cases of the recent outbreak, officials said.