The News Matrix: Wednesday 22 August 2012


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The Independent Online

Thief in Prince Harry phone drama jailed

A thief has been sentenced to two years in prison after snatching the mobile phone belonging to an old school friend of Prince Harry. Winful Taylor, 27, of Stockwell, South London, grabbed Thomas van Straubenzee's phone as he was talking to the prince.

Athletes held for indecent assault

Three members of the Jordanian Paralympic squad have been questioned by police in Northern Ireland on suspicion of indecent assault. The three men were detained in Antrim, where several Paralympic teams are finishing preparations for the start of the Games next week.

Hollande under fire on return from hols

President François Hollande has returned from holiday to face fierce criticism from his own camp. Mr Hollande will chair a cabinet meeting in Paris today as centre-left media denounced his allegedly "halting" and "mediocre" response to the economic problems facing France and the EU. MORE

Prime Minister Zenawi dead, at 57

The death of Ethiopia's long-standing Prime Minister Meles Zenawi at the age of 57 was confirmed yesterday. Although official explanation was a "sudden infection", reliable sources reported that Mr Meles had been in Belgium undergoing treatment for a brain tumour. MORE

Girl and grandfather drown at beach

A five-year-old British girl and her grandfather drowned on a Portuguese beach yesterday, despite rescue workers attempting to resuscitate the child for almost an hour. The girl's grandmother survived after being rescued.

Unions unhappy with pay reform

National teacher pay scales mean state school pupils in the country's most affluent areas get lower GCSE grades, research claims. Unions have warned of industrial action over Michael Gove's proposals for regional pay, but a Bristol University study found that schools in areas with a high cost of living struggle to attract top quality teachers. MORE

Romney censures Akin over rape row

The Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney called on Congressman Todd Akin to quit the US Senate race in Missouri after opining controversially about the link between pregnancy and rape. Ignoring calls to retreat, Akin released a new TV ad apologising for his inflammatory remarks about rape. MORE

Pathologist found guilty of misconduct

Dr Freddy Patel, who conducted the first post-mortem on Ian Tomlinson in 2009, has been found guilty of misconduct. The tribunal said Dr Patel had "brought the profession into disrepute". Tomlinson was struck to the ground during the G20 protest, but Dr Patel claimed he had died of coronary heart disease. MORE

Old Nokia phone goes the distance

A Finnish teenager has won a mobile phone throwing contest by hurling his old Nokia 101.46m (332ft). The annual contest is one of many offbeat events such as wife-carrying that the Finns engage in during the warmer months.

Binge-drivers to be shamed into sobriety

Drunken party-goers who stumble into clinics after a night out could be shown footage of themselves in a bid to crack down on binge drinking. Health officials in Wales hope that if drinkers see their behaviour they will be shamed into sobriety. The pilot scheme will be evaluated by academics to determine its effectiveness.

Following in Shades of Grey's footsteps

Following the success of "50 Shades of Grey", another self-published erotic hit has found a major publisher. St Martin's Press has acquired Sara Fawkes' "Anything He Wants (Dominated by the Billionaire)", on the best-seller lists of and USA Today since the first of five planned e-instalments came out in May.

Ennis The Menace

Heptathlon gold medal winner Jessica Ennis stars in a special edition of the famous comic celebrating the success of British athletes at London 2012. Ennis is featured in the "Menace Heptathlon". It goes on sale tomorrow.