He's rich and well-connected. But Michael Skakel's case deserves close examination

Books: Molls and mobsters

Rupert Cornwell asks if Clinton is paying for JFK's scandals

Skiing is among safest of sports despite deaths of celebrities

Sonny Bono, the American pop singer-turned-congressman who has been killed in a skiing accident at an American resort, is the second celebrity to die on the slopes in less than a week. Nevertheless, as Kathy Marks reports, skiing remains one of the least dangerous sports.

Curse of the Kennedys claims its latest victim

Yet again, tragedy has struck at America's version of royalty, with the death in a skiing accident in Colorado of Michael Kennedy, son of the assassinated Senator Robert Kennedy. Rupert Cornwell looks at a family beset by fame and disaster in equal measure

Kennedy says `alcoholism in is the family genes'

Robert Kennedy Junior, the environmental activist son of the United States senator shot dead in 1968, said in a television interview that he feels "in many ways I was born alcoholic", and believes that alcoholism is in the genes of the Kennedy family.

LBJ thought Cuba had Kennedy killed

Did Fidel Castro have anything to do with the assassination of John F Kennedy? JFK's successor, Lyndon B Johnson, was convinced he did, but feared that if he blamed the Cuban president, the outraged US public would demand retaliation, writes Phil Davison. That could "check us into a war that can kill 40 million Americans in an hour", LBJ said, according to a book to be published in the US this week.

Scandals force Joe Kennedy to pull out of state elections

In an announcement that could mark the beginning of the end of the Kennedy clan's legendary influence in American politics, the late President Kennedy's nephew, Joe Kennedy, said that he would be not standing for the governership of Massachussetts in state elections this autumn.

JFK Jr scorns the black sheep of the Kennedy clan

John F Kennedy Jr has shown once more that no one understands the commercial draw of his name better than himself.

Kennedy 'rape' case dropped

Norfolk County District Attorney Jeffrey Locke yesterday abandoned an investigation into whether Michael Kennedy had sex with an under-age baby sitter, saying the teenager had refused to co-operate.

Archer blueprint to take on Labour

The blueprint for a tough shake-up of the Conservative Party to enable it to snatch back power was laid out by Lord Archer of Weston- super-Mare in a lecture last night.

Heseltine warns of the exile factor

Michael Heseltine warned his party yesterday that it faced "a serious risk" of recreating the rifts and splits that left Labour out of office for 18 years.

Babysitter sex charge casts fresh cloud over Kennedys

Just when it seemed a popular member of America's most famous political dynasty might be heading for a governorship, the family jinx has struck again, reports David Usborne

Obituary: Jack Kent Cooke

In a place of politicians, lawyers and bureaucrats mostly painted varying shades of grey, Jack Kent Cooke stood out like the Washington monument in a dime store. One reason was his ownership of the Washington Redskins football team, the one successful and universally loved institution in a city riven by failure and racial segregation. More important, though, he brought unpredictability, flamboyance and excitement wherever he went.

The state of the Union

The juvenile, the complacent and the snobbish cavort in shallow debates, and Oxford's students love it, says Peter Popham, after hearing the case for blondes. Where has all the politics gone?

Lords approve Firearms Bill

The Government comfortably fought off opposing bids to defeat it in the House of Lords last night over the Firearms Bill it introduced in the wake of the Dunblane massacre.

Dunblane parents reinforce gun message

Fears that the House of Lords could water down plans to restrict the use of handguns brought a renewed effort yesterday by anti-gun protesters to maintain pressure on the Government.
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'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
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Tim Walker checks in and checks out a four-hour journey with a difference
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Voting, mutual back-scratching, coups and charismatic leaders - it's everywhere in the animal world
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Crisp sales are in decline

As a nation we're filling up on popcorn and pitta chips and forsaking their potato-based predecessors
Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

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A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
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Explosive batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Martin Guptill has smashed early runs for Derbyshire and tells Richard Edwards to expect more from the 'freakish' Brendon McCullum and his buoyant team during their tour of England
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