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Almost half the pupils from some French primary schools were absent from class after the text messages were sent

Allison Benitez, 19, during the run-up to the Miss Roussillon contest

France gripped by disappearance of missing beauty queen and her mother following suicide of former legionnaire father

He made ‘I am innocent’ video plea then took life - but it emerged that his former Brazilian mistress disappeared in similar circumstances nine years ago

Strauss-Kahn has been accused of 'a material act of pimping'

Dominique Strauss-Kahn was ‘king of the party’ at sex soirées, claim French investigators

Disgraced former IMF chief has been charged with ‘aggravated pimping’, along with 12 other people

Queensland MP Peter Dowling steps down amid scandal over indecent images

Australian state lawmaker Peter Dowling has stepped down as the head of an ethics committee after being accused of sending raunchy pictures of himself to a woman, describing his actions as indefensible.

Present company excluded: Beyonce and Jay Z at a film screening; Paris and Nicky Hilton at a fashion show; David Furnish and Elton John at 2011's royal wedding

The rise of phubbing - aka phone snubbing

Practice has spawned an online backlash that has gone global

Magdelena Luczak and Mariusz Krezolek

Mother and partner who showed no remorse for murder of Daniel Pelka to serve at least 30 years in jail

Judge says four-year-old suffered incomprehensible brutality from Magdelena Luczak and Mariusz Krezolek

Paralysed motorbike stunt rider Eddie Kidd

Eddie Kidd's wife jailed for five months for assaulting the paralysed motorbike stuntman

Samantha Kidd pleaded guilty to four counts of assault

Magdelena Luczak and Mariusz Krezolek

Starved, beaten, poisoned: The tragic death of Daniel Pelka at hands of mother and partner

Mother and her partner ‘took relish’ in reign of torture that led to murder of four-year-old boy

Katy Perry has denied rumours of a relationship with Robert Pattinson.

Katy Perry denies romantic link to Robert Pattinson

Pop star Katy Perry has denied rumours that she dated British actor Robert Pattinson.

Madrid protests turn violent as Spanish PM Mariano Rajoy is accused of corruption

Thousands take to streets in Madrid and Barcelona amid calls for explanation from ruling People's Party

Postcard from... Brussels

Postcard from... Brussels

Britain isn’t the only country enjoying a welcome spell of balmy weather at the moment. In Belgium, too, the sun has come out after one of the most miserable springs on record, and people spent the weekend picking up some much-needed rays in gardens, parks and on beaches.

Mariano Rajoy, Spainish Prime Minister

Corrupt? I’m being blackmailed, says Spain’s embattled PM Mariano Rajoy in wake of slush fund allegations

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy rejected calls to quit on Monday after his party’s former treasurer said in court he was the author of documents leaked to the press last week, which alleged the premier was paid out of a slush fund.

George Zimmerman enters the courtroom in Florida

Zimmerman declines to testify in trial for murder of Trayvon Martin

The neighbourhood watch volunteer is accused of second degree murder for shooting an unarmed teenager

Briton wanted over drugs haul arrested in Athens pub

Police discovered more than £2m cash and drugs worth millions at a Fulham property in November

A Sumatran tiger. An animal taming rescue team has saved a group of men who were trapped up trees for five days by an angry family of Sumatran tigers

Five men trapped up trees by tigers rescued by animal tamers after five-day ordeal

Seven Sumatran tigers were angered when the foragers accidentally trapped a cub, and mauled one man to death

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 1 May 2015
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before