The News Matrix: Thursday 20 June 2013


'Abduction' teacher won't give evidence

A teacher who allegedly abducted a 15-year-old schoolgirl last year will not give evidence in his defence. The judge told the jurors they could make "any inferences as appear proper" regarding Mr Forrest's decision not to take the stand at Lewes Crown Court. The prosecution told the jury Mr Forrest could be considered a "paedophile" who "groomed" the pupil. Mr Forrest denies child abduction.

Teens approve of 'honour killings'

A generation of teenagers in Jordan believes "honour killings" to be justified, according to a Cambridge study of 15-year-olds in the capital Amman. Almost half of boys and one in five girls believe murdering a daughter, sister or wife who had dishonoured the family is justified.

Depression and anxiety hit one in five

Nearly a fifth of all people in the UK have experienced anxiety or depression, according to newly released figures. The Office for National Statistics said that a higher proportion of women than men reportedly suffered from the conditions.

Suicide attack kills electoral candidate

A suicide attack has killed an election candidate and four of his relatives in a northern province of Iraq. The bomber attacked a guesthouse owned by Younis al-Rammah, who was a candidate in provincial elections beginning today in Nineveh. Six others were wounded in the blast.

Bankers' bonuses rise after top tax cut

A tax break on bankers' bonuses, which leapt to record highs this year, caused anger in the Labour party.

MPs in the party accused David Cameron of giving a "massive tax cut" to millionaires at a time when many ordinary people are seeing their pay go down. MORE

Passport shock for easyJet customers

Holidaymakers could get a nasty surprise if they are planning to travel to Cyprus on easyJet with soon-to-expire passports. The low-cost airline has said that customers could be turned away if their passports have less than three months to run. MORE

Depp reveals he is blind in one eye

Johnny Depp has spoken publicly for the first time about his break-up with actress and singer Vanessa Paradis. "The last couple of years have been a bit bumpy," the 50-year-old actor told Rolling Stone in an interview to promote his new movie, The Lone Ranger. He also revealed he was born "basically blind as a bat" in his left eye. MORE

Alarm angers neighbours

A man has received a host of complaints from neighbours after he installed a high-pitched alarm system to deter loitering children. The alarm, which emits a high-frequency tone four times a second, is said to have made one neighbouring child "physically sick". MORE

Ayatollah tells the young to take hike

The supreme leader of Iran has published a Twitter paean to the benefits of exercise. A Twitter account believed to be maintained by the office of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei posted recent tweets in English recommending a hike in the mountains. MORE

Sollecito father fights back

Raffaele Sollecito, who faces a retrial with Amanda Knox for the murder of British student Meredith Kercher in Italy, has had to leave Switzerland after what his father called "a moral and social lynching". Swiss officials revoked his residence permit, saying he did not give them details of the pending retrial.

New Picasso record: vase sells for £1m

A vase by Pablo Picasso was today sold for almost £1m, setting a world record for the highest price paid for a ceramic object by the artist.

The 1950 Grand Vase aux Femmes Voiles was bought by an anonymous bidder at Christie's auction house in South Kensington, London. The piece reached £980,275 at the impressionist and modern art sale, despite a pre-auction estimate of just £250,000-£350,000.