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.

Petra Ecclestone had jewellery worth £450,000 stolen

Burglar posing as oligarch stole jewels from Petra Ecclestone mansion

A burglar who stole jewellery from the £32m home of Petra Ecclestone while posing as a wealthy Russian buyer has been jailed for eight years for a string of similar burglaries at upmarket homes in London and the Home Counties.

Everton have the financial strength not to part with their midfielder Ross Barkley next month

Everton will not let Ross Barkley go the same way as Wayne Rooney - even if they receive an £85m offer in January

Roberto Martinez says the Toffees wouldn't be tempted to part with the youngster even if they received a 'Gareth Bale-sized valuation'

iPhone case, from £40, DVF.com

Style File: Access all areas - designer stocking fillers

Fashion’s new democratic bent means there are small-but-stylish designer gifts to suit all pockets, says Alexander Fury

The News Matrix: Monday 16 December 2013

Mandela buried in ancestral village

The Audit: Sofa spas and KStew couture

We love…

Sofa spas

Nokia Asha 503 review: a gem of smartphone with a battery that lasts weeks

David Phelan takes Nokia’s latest affordable phone for a spin

Nigella Lawson used drugs every three days at family home, former assistant tells court

Nigella Lawson was today accused in court of failing to tell the truth in the witness box about her cocaine habit.

Universal specifics: Hadas Yaron in 'Fill the Void'

Fill The Void, film review: 'An insider's view on Orthodox Hassidic life'

A delicately directed drama with themes recognisable to any audience

Elephant Appeal: No more deaths on the savannah... politicians must act

It’s not too late to do something, but it will be soon

Ronnie Wood for the Elephant Appeal: No more deaths on the savannah... politicians must act

I’m lucky, in a way. I’ve seen the devastation with my own eyes. The rotting carcasses with their heads removed, and the little orphaned babies. When crocodiles and lions kill elephants, they go for the babies, which is heartbreaking to watch when you see it on television. But poachers go for the biggest ones they can, and that means orphans.

Kenyan politician Mike Sonko left red-faced after photoshopping himself next to Nelson Mandela

From Tony Blair to the Spice Girls, everyone wanted to be pictured with Nelson Mandela.

Woodland creatures: The best nature-inspired jewellery

Clockwise from top: Butterfly pendant in black opalescent, white gold and black diamond £3,500, Stephen Webster at Harrods 020-7730 1234

The Gem of Tanzania, which is now thought to be a forgery

Crossing the ruby con: Failing firm valued £8,000 gem at £11m

Two company directors have been disqualified from business after using a falsely valued ruby to inflate their failing company’s accounts.

A court ruled this week that the lover of the Arpels diamond heiress would have to return money he was left

French big business and the art of the family feud

From usurped diamond inheritances to boards stuffed with rowing cousins, the source of stress in Paris is all relative

News
Ben Little, right, is a Labour supporter while Jonathan Rogers supports the Green Party
general election 2015
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The 91st Hakone Ekiden Qualifier at Showa Kinen Park, Tokyo, 2014
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Life and Style
Former helicopter pilot Major Tim Peake will become the first UK astronaut in space for over 20 years
food + drinkNothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
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Kim Wilde began gardening in the 1990s when she moved to the countryside
peopleThe singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
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Alexis Sanchez celebrates scoring a second for Arsenal against Reading
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An easy-peel potato; Dave Hax has come up with an ingenious method in food preparation
voicesDave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
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Japan's population is projected to fall dramatically in the next 50 years (Wikimedia)
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Buyers of secondhand cars are searching out shades last seen in cop show ‘The Sweeney’
motoringFlares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
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NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own