I'm no paedophile, says French minister who had sex with boys

The French Culture minister, Frédéric Mitterrand, last night denied paying for sex with underage Asian boys and rejected accusations that he wrote a book justifying sex tourism.

Robert Harris: A writer close to the power elite

Robert Harris may have friends in high places – but that doesn't mean that the sharpness of his writing is blunted by compromise

Mitterrand fights for his job after rent boy admission

French minister's boasts of sex with young boys come back to haunt him

Polanski to remain in Swiss custody

Roman Polanski lost the first round yesterday in his battle to avoid extradition to the US for having sex with a 13-year-old girl in 1977.

Susan Atkins: Follower of Charles Manson who spent the rest of her life in jail after the Tate-LaBianca killings

Susan Atkins, who has died aged 61, was characterised by the former assistant Los Angeles district attorney Stephen Kay as "the scariest of the Manson girls", who as members of Charles Manson's "family" committed the Tate-LaBianca murders, traumatising Los Angeles and shocking the world. The image of Atkins, an X carved in her forehead in imitation of Manson, telling the sentencing judge, "you'd best lock your doors and watch your own kids" was the most chilling of a trial which brought to an end the short-lived hippie era of the Sixties.

DJ Taylor: Sing and you're winning

If Labour wants to retain power, it should back the singalong rather than fret about the press. Plus, Polanski's ridiculous friends, football's foulers, and the death of Lucy Vodden, inspiration to John Lennon

Joan Smith: We stereotype sexual predators, and we get it wrong

Vanessa, Colin and Angela: they sound like inoffensive neighbours whom you might invite round for a drink. In fact, they're three of the worst paedophiles ever convicted in this country.

Errors & Omissions: Meanings come and go, but some things never change

A blurb published in yesterday's Arts and Books section displayed a rare example of a common type of confusion: "After a four-year break from film, the actress who emanates a misfit's primal energy is back."

Letters: Changes to the compulsory retirement age

Decision day on retirement age must come soon

Prosecutor says he lied about Polanski's trial

Film director's appeal over conviction may be put in jeopardy by revelation

Decade of decadence: Nicholson, Polanski and Hollywood in the Seventies

The Roman Polanski case offers an insight into the strange world of Hollywood in the Seventies. Just how shocking was the behaviour of directors and producers when so many classic films were being made? Geoffrey Macnab looks behind closed doors

Letters: The Pilkington tragedy

How horrific abuse can be nobody's problem

France condemns 'sinister' arrest of Polanski

Foreign minister demands answers from US as Hollywood stars plead for release of director held over sex with 13-year-old

US tipped off by film festival website

In the end, Google succeeded where three decades of detective work and diplomatic endeavour failed, and LA's District Attorney's Office was finally able to nab the self-confessed child sex offender who'd been cocking a snook at them for so long.

Harvey Weinstein: Polanski has served his time and must be freed

It's a shocking way to treat a man who went through the Holocaust and his wife's murder
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Jeremy Paxman has admitted he is a 'one-nation Tory' and complained that Newsnight is made by idealistic '13-year-olds' who foolishly think they can 'change the world'.
peopleThe idea has been greeted enthusiastically by the party's MPs
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Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
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File: David Cameron offers a toast during a State Dinner in his honour March 14, 2012
voicesAnd nobody from Ukip said babies born to migrants should be classed as migrants, says Nigel Farage
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Avatar grossed $2.8bn at the box office after its release in 2009
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Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
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Arts and Entertainment
Stella Gibson is getting closer to catching her killer
tvReview: It's gripping edge-of-the-seat drama, so a curveball can be forgiven at such a late stage
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Brazilian football legend Pele pictured in 2011
peopleFans had feared the worst when it was announced the Brazil legand was in a 'special care' unit
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Brendan Rodgers seems more stressed than ever before as Liverpool manager
FOOTBALLI like Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game