News Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah and ex-wife Mariam Aziz, pictured in 1999

A former international badminton player who became a bodyguard and close friend to the ex-wife of the Sultan of Brunei abused her position to steal diamonds worth £11.6m from her “extremely wealthy” employer, a court heard yesterday.

Back on course: Tiger plans to return next month in Florida

Woods expected to announce his comeback today at Bay Hill tournament near his home in Orlando

Student jailed for G20 window smashing

A student who threw a computer monitor through a bank window as part of last year's G20 protests was jailed for two-and-a-half years today.

Professor A.G.H. Bachrach: Turner expert and doyen of English literary studies who translated Shakespeare into Dutch

Fred Bachrach, who died just over a week after his 95th birthday, was a Dutch doyen of English literary studies and Anglo-Dutch cultural relations of the 17th century; also, in later life, he was a notable contributor to the interpretation of J.M.W. Turner's work as a painter of marine and Dutch subjects.

US pilot admits drink charge

An American pilot today admitted turning up to fly out of Heathrow Airport while over the alcohol limit.

On the Front Foot: Swann is a phenomenon but he is playing to different rules

In Graeme Swann's dramatic rise to the top of his profession the role of leg before wicket has played the most prominent role. Of Swann's 62 wickets, no fewer than 26 have been lbw. At 42 per cent of the total, this is a considerably higher proportion than any other bowler in the game with more than 50 Test wickets. In second place on 34 per cent (that is 58 of his 170 wickets) is the Australian swinger Terry Alderman. Swann has been aided and abetted by a much more flexible interpretation of Law 36 (about time too), his ability to get drift and turn while attacking the stumps, and the decision review system which will play an increasingly significant part in the conduct and outcome of Tests. To compare Swann to other England slow bowlers is to conclude that they must have been playing to different rules. After 14 Tests he already has the third most lbw victims. Other off-spinners include Jim Laker, who had 32 lbw victims in his total of 193, Fred Titmus (23 from 153), John Emburey (16 from 147), Ray Illingworth (12 from 122) and David Allen (nine from 122). No fewer than 37, or 59.7 per cent, of Swann's victims have been left-handers. Benedict Bermange, the Sky Sports statistician, points out that no bowler with more than 40 wickets has dismissed left-handers for more than half of them. Small wonder that when England coach Andy Flower was asked if Swann would have got him out, he replied: "Yes, probably, and probably lbw."

MPs' expenses claims published online

MPs' second home expenses claims came under fresh scrutiny today as Commons authorities published hundreds of thousands of new receipts.

A very merry birthday: The festive season can leave those born on 25 December feeling short-changed

Christmas baby Joanna Biddolph offers a guide to celebrating with sensitivity

Woods delays police questioning over crash

Tiger Woods was facing police questions today after officers investigating the champion golfer's mysterious early morning car crash were denied an interview opportunity for the second day in a row.

Tiger Woods out of hospital following car crash

World number one golfer Tiger Woods has been released from hospital following a car crash, according to US reports tonight.



Osterley Park café, Jersey Road, Isleworth, Middlesex

All too often, the food on family days out is no picnic. Can the café at Osterley Park match its gorgeous grounds?

'Devil in a dog collar' jailed for child sex attacks

A Roman Catholic priest referred to as the "devil in a dog collar" was jailed for eight years today over a string of sex attacks on young boys.

Pair charged with attack on homeless man

Two people were charged today with slitting the throat of a homeless man in a horrific street attack.

Drug mule swallowed 106 cocaine packages

A man who swallowed 106 packages of cocaine to smuggle them into the UK was today starting a 10-year jail sentence.

Trio jailed for 'fraud factory' scam

An Indian solicitor and two women who both claim to be his wives were jailed today for the roles they played in the biggest visa scam ever seen in Britain.

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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

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War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
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Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

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The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

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Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?