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The News Matrix: Tuesday 8 May 2012


'Female Brucie would be a bonus'

Frances Barber has lamented the disappearance of older women from our screens. The actress said she couldn't imagine Strictly Come Dancing being presented by a woman the same age as Sir Bruce Forsyth, 84.

Plan for attack on Bin Laden anniversary

The CIA thwarted an al-Qa'ida plot to destroy a US-bound airliner using a bomb hidden in a terrorist's underwear to coincide with the anniversary of Osama bin Laden's death. US officials say the Yemen-based plot involved an upgrade of the underwear bomb that failed to detonate aboard an airliner over Detroit on Christmas Day 2009. The weapon, which contained no metal, is suspected to have been made by Ibrahim al-Asiri, left, who constructed the first underwear bomb.

Cadbury heiress to make British chocs

The great-granddaughter of the founder of Cadbury, now owned by American firm Kraft, has sold her £30m Cotswolds mansion to start her own rival chocolate company. Felicity Loudon, who opposed the takeover in 2010, has said she wants the product to be "affordable" and "quirky". MORE

Clegg and Cameron show a united front

David Cameron and Nick Clegg will today put on a show of unity to convince voters the Coalition has not lost sight of its core mission to clear the deficit. However the effort to draw a line under its recent troubles was overshadowed by more infighting between their parties. MORE

Facebook honour for campsite death girl

Tributes have been paid to a girl killed in a campsite tragedy thought to have been caused by a disposable barbecue. Friends set up a Facebook page for Hannah Thomas-Jones, who died at a Shropshire campsite after suffering a cardiac arrest at around 10am on Sunday. MORE

'Concordia' owner confident of future

The chief executive of travel company Costa, which saw their ship the Costa Concordia wrecked off the coast of Italy four months ago leading to the death of 32 passengers, has claimed that consumer confidence has returned to the brand, and bookings are ahead of schedule. The claim was met with scepticism by senior travel-industry figures in the UK. MORE

Hundreds face trial over sit-in violence

Judges are sending 293 Egyptians to trial on charges of resisting authorities, damaging public property and carrying weapons during a protest last year. A sit-in outside the cabinet building turned violent when troops beat a protester. In four days, 14 people were killed and hundreds injured.

Back to prison for ex-Death Row inmate

A Scot who spent two decades on death row before his release is heading back to jail for threatening a judge. Kenny Richey was sentenced to three years in prison in Ohio yesterday. He had left threatening telephone messages for judge Randall Basinger, warning he was "coming to get him".

'Sham' elections held as country strikes

Syrians went to the polls in their first multi-party parliamentary elections in 50 years, as swathes of the country went on strike and barely a trickle of voters was reported in restive provinces. The vote has been billed by the regime as a milestone. MORE

Dentist fraud taking a bite out of NHS

Dentists cost the taxpayer tens of millions of pounds by creating "ghost patients" or exaggerating work being done for the NHS, according to an audit of 5,000 invoices by anti-fraud unit NHS Protect. The report suggests dentist fraud cost the NHS £73.1m in 2009-2010. MORE

Driver held after displaying testicles

A motorist has been ticketed in South Carolina for displaying a replica of testicles on a vehicle. A Spartanburg County sheriff's deputy stopped a truck on Sunday after noticing the display on the rear bumper. The driver was then arrested for driving without a licence.

Mountain rockslide kills six pilgrims

A boulder which fell from a mountain in Vietnam has killed six pilgrims. The rockslide in the southern An Giang province instantly killed four people in a tourist car and a motorbike driver, while three others were injured. One died on the way to hospital, while the two others are still being treated.

Zinc supplements may shorten a cold

Scientists have found that taking zinc tablets may shorten the duration of a cold in adults in a new trial of 2,100 patients, but if you do you are more likely to suffer side-effects such as nausea and diarrhoea, than those who take nothing. Larger trials are need to confirm the findings. MORE