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.

Rower Alex Partridge and hockey star Hannah Macleod took to social networking site Twitter to appeal for information to find their Olympic bronze medals

Olympians make desperate pleas after London 2012 medals are stolen during party

Two of Britain's Olympic winners have reportedly had their medals stolen, only hours after the Queen hosted a glittering Buckingham Palace event to celebrate London 2012 athletes.

The Fashion Audit: Varsity blues, dangerous nails and Marios Schwab

What we love, we're not sure about, we're buying and can't wait for...

One to Watch: William Foyle, Painter, 19

"I paint every day, without exception. I become absorbed in my paintings, and I find myself captivated by my next painting at every stroke of my current one."

Fortnum & Mason 'linked to cruel foie gras footage'

Covert footage of a farmer apparently allowing his dog to torment a goose used in foie gras production has raised new questions about the welfare of animals supplied to the upmarket department store Fortnum & Mason.

The interior of the planet 55 Cancri e - an extremely hot planet with a surface of mostly graphite surrounding a thick layer of diamond

Newly discovered 'super-Earth' is made of diamonds, say scientists

It may not twinkle like a star but it is still a diamond in the sky according to astronomers who have found a rocky planet similar to Earth but made of the precious gemstone.

Phil Ivey has career winnings of £9m as a professional poker player

Professional poker player under scrutiny after extraordinary run of success at game of chance

Britain's oldest casino has refused to pay out £7.3m to a world-beating poker star and has launched a probe into how he took on the house at a skill-free game of chance, and won.

Police investigating death of model Laura Pahomova

Police are investigating the death of a young woman who plunged nine floors to her death from an apartment balcony.

London's Piccadilly Lights mark National Poetry Day

London's Piccadilly Lights are being emblazoned with lines of poetry in a first for the world-famous landmark.

Spurs owner buys TV share

Joe Lewis, the owner of Tottenham Hotspur, has won the battle to buy Timeweave, the Aim-listed firm that owns half of Turf TV.

I'm penniless, Asil Nadir tells court

Former fugitive business tycoon Asil Nadir, convicted of stealing nearly £29 million, today claimed to be penniless.

Mary Dejevsky: What the court battles of the oligarchs say about Britain

Today is the day when English justice delivers its verdict on the oligarchs. After seven months spent poring over the evidence, Mrs Justice Gloster returns to London's Commercial Court to hand down her judgment in the case of Berezovsky v Abramovich – Boris Berezovsky being a one-time Kremlin adviser now in exile in Britain; Roman Abramovich being the owner of Chelsea Football Club. Berezovsky claimed Abramovich cheated him in a share deal, and demanded £3bn in damages. Abramovich said he did nothing of the kind.

Asil Nadir guilty of 10 theft charges

Former fugitive tycoon Asil Nadir has been found guilty of 10 counts of stealing £28.6 million.

Former Polly Peck tycoon Asil Nadir, 71, is facing jail after he was convicted of theft between 1987 and 1990

Asil Nadir faces jail after being found guilty of plundering millions of pounds from his own Polly Peck business empire

After 17 years of self-imposed exile in Northern Cyprus, the former fugitive Asil Nadir is facing jail after he was convicted of plundering millions of pounds from his own business empire.

Jury retires in Asil Nadir Polly Peck trial

Jurors in the eight-month trial of former tycoon Asil Nadir for allegedly stealing millions from the Polly Peck business empire today retired to consider their verdicts.

Reform Social and Grill, Mandeville Hotel, Mandeville Place, London W1

Did you think that gentleman's-club dining – Brown Windsor soup, game-heavy main courses, "savoury puddings" like Welsh rarebit, a "roast" that's carved, table-side, from a carcass on a silver trolley by a chap who expects a tip – had gone the way of the bowler hat and the maiden aunt? You'd be wrong. While Jeremy King and Chris Corbin are reintroducing the Mitteleuropean grand café concept to London (with the Wolseley, the Delaunay and now Brasserie Zédel) others – from Mike Robinson to Mark Hix – are breathing life into traditional club grub.

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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
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there