News Dr Jose Manuel Mireles (third left), one of the leaders of the Michoacan vigilante group pictured with him. He has since been injured in an aircrash that could have been an attempt on his life

A vigilante militia is marching on the stronghold of The Knights Templar cartel in Michoacan, and attacking the police they accuse of protecting the gang. Can they rescue the failing state?

Landlords are increasing the size of their portfolios

Terraced houses remain the first choice for landlords as London rents continue to rise

Police given more time to quiz Derby house fire parents as public provide 'useful' information

Several people have come forward with “extremely useful” information about an arson attack that killed six children, as police were given extra time to question their parents.

Mick Philpott and his wife Mairead appeal for information after the fatal house fire in Derby earlier this month

Parents arrested on suspicion of murder after Derby house fire that killed six of their children

Mr Philpott was earlier praised by police for his 'valiant' attempts to rescuehis sleeping children

Nick Hendrix's bellboy gets to grips with Samantha Bond in Orton's <i>What the Butler Saw</i>

What the Butler Saw, Vaudeville Theatre, London
The Sunshine Boys, Savoy Theatre, London
Detroit, NT Cottesloe, London

Joe Orton's famous sex farce is the latest addition to theatreland's retro craze. Despite being funny and well acted, it's jokes are showing their age

Mick Philpott and his wife, Mairead, break down as they speak to the media yesterday. They thanked emergency services and rescuers for their help

Police confirm Derby house fire was caused by someone pouring 'substantial' amount of petrol through letter box

A fatal fire that killed six children from the same family was deliberately started by someone pouring a "substantial" amount of petrol through the letter box and lighting it, police said today.

The house in Allenton, Derbyshire where Mick Philpott and his children died in the fire

Two arrested on suspicion of murder after fire kills five children

Father of 17 had allegedly received death threats and had been vilified by tabloids for his lifestyle

The 10 Best running events

Not quite up to this month’s London Marathon? Try one of the shorter – or sillier – races in our selection

Real Estate, Sebright Arms, London

Tonight; a low-ceilinged, Lilliputian basement in a pub off Hackney Road. Tomorrow night; a high-ceilinged, velvet-clad hyper-venue in Mornington Crescent with a capacity nearing 2,500.

In Basildon, Royal Court, London

David Eldridge's In Basildon is a gloriously rich, humorous, agonising and politically provocative play, but it has been staged by the Royal Court's artistic director, Dominic Cooke, in a bafflingly peculiar, not to say, counterproductive way.

Canary Wharf spreads its wings to grow by a third

The landlord of Canary Wharf ushered in a new phase in the evolution of its sprawling estate today with a land deal which could eventually bring another 20,000 workers to London's Docklands.

Gun laws in spotlight as man kills family with licensed arms

A taxi driver who murdered his partner, her sister and her sister's daughter before shooting himself in a New Year's Day killing spree at the family home held licences for six weapons and had been known to police for three years after he threatened to harm himself.

Peterlee gunman held firearms licence

A man who shot himself after killing three women on New Year's Day was a licensed holder of firearms, it has emerged.

St Paul's camp decision reserved

The High Court has reserved its decision on the City of London Corporation's bid to evict anti-capitalist protesters from outside St Paul's Cathedral.

Sacked policeman kills his wife and daughter

A sacked police inspector killed his wife and six-year-old daughter and seriously injured his two other children in a frenzied knife attack before killing himself.

For sale: futurologist JG Ballard's old home. In need of modernisation

JG Ballard's rather drab semi-detached home in Shepperton is inextricably linked with the life of one of post-war fiction's greatest talents. Many of the country's best writers, often Ballard's disciples, visited the author during the 49 years that he lived in this sleepy suburb, where he crafted the dystopian thrillers Crash and Cocaine Nights.

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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