Kobe Bryant has returned to the Lakers after traveling to Germany last week for routine medical treatment on his knee.Bryant received a standing ovation as he walked on to the floor in sweats during Tuesday night’s Los Angeles Lakers preseason game against the Denver Nuggets. The all-star, who is also recovering from a torn Achilles tendon he suffered last NBA season, spoke about the progress of his injuries in a television interview.“It’s going well,” Bryant said. “I feel good. Obviously, I feel like I’m ahead of schedule. It’s about trying to get that range of motion back where I feel like I can run comfortably. The last stage is really the explosiveness and the muscle endurance, and that will come.”There is no firm return date for Bryant’s return, but he has been making light jogging runs and set shooting in the Laker’s training camp practice.“Just keep grinding. Keep working hard and getting better,” Bryant said. “I gotta get in shape, too. I’ve been sitting on my butt now for a while. I gotta get up and get moving.”
DeMarco Murray, formerly of the Dallas Cowboys, in a game against the Philadelphia Eagles at AT&T Stadium on Nov. 27 in Arlington, Texas. Tom Pennington / Getty Images Walt: If you think back to that playoff run two years back, how many of those players — besides Riley Cooper, the platonic ideal of a Philadelphian — are still with Philly? Not a lot! And with Mark Sanchez to fall back on, Kelly is definitely opening his team up to some risk here, right?Neil: Sanchez backers might point out that he had by far the best year of his career in Kelly’s system last season. But that’s also kind of the point: Sanchez broke new ground by barely being above average and then parlayed it into $5.5 million guaranteed over two years — a pretty rich deal by backup standards. And now that they have Bradford, the Eagles have managed to collect the league’s two least-efficient starting QBs over the past five seasons by yards gained per pass attempt.Ben, what’s the Skeptical Football take on these guys?Ben: Foles, I love. He plays the position with the kind of aggressive win-maximizing abandon that I endorse, takes risks and throws deep when he needs to, and it has paid off with a fair amount of team success. However, it’s still unclear to me whether he actually has the skills to be a great quarterback in this league or has been running on scrappiness and good fortune alone. Take his much-maligned deep ball: Foles completed only 34 percent of his deep passes (more than 15 yards downfield) in 2014 but completed enough big plays that he gained an average of 0.23 expected points per attempt on them overall. (In fact, this was the main source of his value added for the season, as he just about broke even on short attempts.) Shrewd gambler though he may be, that combination isn’t sustainable.While Bradford has been extremely inefficient (like Neil says), it should also be noted that his career so far falls in the extremely common category of heralded quarterbacks put into a terrible situation who were serviceable but failed to turn it around single-handedly. When it comes to evaluating the first few years of a QB’s career, that’s just about the least informative scenario. If you have faith in Bradford’s skills for whatever reasons (including old-fashioned ones like scouting), your belief at least hasn’t yet been disproved. In a whole new situation like this, his trajectory is unpredictable. It won’t surprise me if he’s an all-star in a few years or if he’s out of the league entirely.If there’s a method to Kelly’s madness here, I think it’s that, given the totality of circumstances, Bradford regressing to his own personal mean would probably mean better production, while Foles regressing would probably mean worse production.As an empirical matter, this trade has me excited. How often do you get such a great opportunity to cross-compare like this? It’s two chances to see how the texture of a quarterback’s performance changes when he switches environments AND two chances to see how a team’s production changes when it’s led by different quarterbacks. No matter what happens, it’ll be an empirical coup. We should learn a lot about a lot more than just these QBs.Neil: Of course, all this assumes that Kelly is telling the truth when he says he won’t trade up in the draft to snag his former Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota as the team’s long-term future at the position. And if there’s anything we’ve learned from the first few months of Kelly’s tenure as grocery-shopper (in addition to cook), it’s to expect the unexpected.Walt: The only thing less trustworthy than an Eagles fan is an Eagles coach. Quarterback Sam Bradford, formerly of the St. Louis Rams, watches a game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on Nov. 9 in Glendale, Arizona. Christian Petersen / Getty Images Tuesday marked the beginning of a new year on the NFL calendar, and the Philadelphia Eagles apparently decided to celebrate the occasion with a flurry of major transactions. In response, we summoned a special FiveThirtyEight NFL roundtable, wherein Ben Morris, Neil Paine and Walt Hickey discuss the big moves, continue to debate Chip Kelly’s mad genius and ponder what all this roster reshuffling amounts to.Neil Paine: Walt, when last we convened to discuss NFL transactions, you hailed Rex Ryan for grabbing LeSean McCoy but also gave some credit to Chip Kelly for smartly freeing up cap space. Now we have the news that Kelly — in the wake of being spurned by Frank Gore — has essentially executed an old-school challenge trade at the game’s most important position, dealing Nick Foles to St. Louis for Sam Bradford. Have you embraced Kelly’s madness?Walt Hickey: As I understand it — which is barely — Kelly is either making a dramatic short in the Philadelphia jersey market, destroying the value of essentially any fan’s merchandise purchased two or more years ago, or winning the Kobayashi Maru while the rest of the league is playing Snakes and Ladders. Both situations are troubling. As a Giants fan, my only thought is: What’s his play?Ben Morris: I like to imagine that Chip Kelly and Les Snead were just chillin’ and Kelly was like, “Dude, crazy hypothetical that just popped into my head: What would happen if we just right out and switched quarterbacks? I mean, neither of us is in love with who we have, and people always say that kind of thing: ‘What would happen if you put Brady on the Broncos and Manning on the Patriots?’ Honestly, I have no idea what would happen, but could you imagine?” And then after a lengthy chortle, a tiny uncomfortable silence took over before they nearly simultaneously grinned and went, “[expletive] it.”Neil: The swap is a bit puzzling, I admit. Foles was inconsistent when healthy last season, and his staggeringly efficient 2013 campaign was driven in part by a freakishly low interception rate. But for all of Foles’s up-and-down play, he still has a far better statistical track record than Bradford, who — let’s also point out — missed all of last season with a knee injury. In fairness, Bradford was saddled with a terrible supporting cast in St. Louis, and he still carries the prestige of a former No. 1 overall draft pick. So if you squint, Kelly kind of turned a former third-round QB into the highest of first-rounders. But both of these guys have been out of college so long that it’s a real stretch to make that argument. Neil: Let’s shift gears to Thursday’s news that Kelly’s Eagles inked former Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray to a five-year, $42 million contract (with $21 million guaranteed). Ben, you wrote about Murray several times last season — what are your thoughts on Philly picking him up?Ben: The main thing to like about the Eagles signing DeMarco Murray is that they didn’t absolutely break the bank to do it. While $42 million over five years with $21 million guaranteed is a fair amount for a running back, it’s comparable to what LeSean McCoy got from Buffalo. While it likely isn’t a huge value move, the important part is that it isn’t Adrian Peterson money.The two main Murray knocks are 1) that he played behind a supposedly stellar offensive line in Dallas and 2) that he has had some fumbling problems that have negated much of his would-be Win Percentage Added over the past few seasons. These are both legitimate concerns, and — assuming it’s true that the Cowboys were only willing to offer Murray $5 million per year — it would seem his former employers took them seriously.Yet, again, the deal seems to have a fairly high upside. Both of the Murray knocks are in the “reasonable doubt” category — they’re not outright proof that Murray isn’t the real deal. And if he is, the Eagles may be getting the “ideal running back” at a reasonable price.Neil: Like you said, though, Murray’s contract ended up being only slightly cheaper than the deal given to McCoy after Kelly abruptly traded him to the Bills a little over a week ago. In addition, Murray will be 27 years old next season — the same age as McCoy (at a position where peak production comes at age 26, I might add) — and the two players have practically identical per-carry and per-game stats over the past four seasons.Walt, what keeps this from being a lateral move for the Eagles? And if so, doesn’t that just reinforce the notion that Kelly the GM is flying by the seat of his pants this offseason with no discernible plan? (Which seems especially likely in the case of Murray’s signing, since Kelly inked Ryan Mathews, another RB, earlier in the week.)Walt: This is totally a lateral move for the Eagles! But it’s a rather brilliant one. The de facto result of the past several weeks is that Kelly traded McCoy for Kiko Alonso, Murray and extra cap space. Which, honestly, seems nice. If you’re obsessed with ages and their relationship to productivity in interchangeable running backs, Neil, that’s not a terrible move, provided it was planned.Naturally, I hope this week is terrible for Philadelphia and its citizens. But these moves are exciting and matter. Looking at the 2013 roster, there’s very little continuity at skill positions — Brent Celek, Riley Cooper, Jeff Maehl and Chris Polk. That’s a lot of turnover! But I think Eagles fans just have to go for the ride here.Neil: As our colleague (and Philly sports aficionado) Jody Avirgan tweeted, being an Eagles fan is suddenly a bit like working a low-level job on the Manhattan Project: You have no idea what the master plan is — or if one even exists — but you have to trust that the smart guys at the top know what they’re doing.I do wonder how long this fan base’s patience will last if these machinations don’t quickly lead to wins. But maybe that’s how you build a winner in the NFL, by taking these kinds of chances.Ben: You can kind of see Kelly’s meta-strategy coming together: He’s going to either build a contender or crash and burn. As a gambler, I like it: He’s setting up a parlay, no doubt — but one that seems like it could pay off big if it hits.
OSU sophomore Nicolas Szerszen (9) prepares to spike the ball during a match against George Mason on Jan. 15. OSU won 3-0.Credit: Courtesy of OSUThe No. 5 Ohio State men’s volleyball team (15-3, 9-1) protected its home court at St. John Arena with a pair of big wins over No. 11 Loyola University (11-5, 6-3) and No. 13 Lewis University (11-8, 6-5) over the weekend.The Buckeyes captured the win over the Ramblers in three sets (25-20, 25-21, 25-22) Friday night. They continued their successful weekend with a hard-fought win over the Flyers in four sets (25-22, 25-14, 26-28, 25-22) the following evening.“I thought (Friday) night’s game we were really sharp in terms of our serving and our offense ran at a really high level. (Saturday) it was more of a struggle,” OSU coach Pete Hanson said. “So, one clean, nice, pretty win and one not so pretty win.”The Buckeyes kicked the weekend off with an important matchup against the two-time defending national champion Ramblers, who the Buckeyes already took care of in straight sets earlier in the year.The first set started off with strong back-and-forth scoring from each team. As the set moved along, the squads matched each other point for point. Midway through the set, however, the Scarlet and Gray took control and eventually reached the 25-point plateau. The second set began differently than the first. OSU stepped hard on the gas and flew ahead straight from the outset. The Buckeyes maintained control and held off the advances of the Ramblers to take the second consecutive set.Feeling the pressure to push the match to another set, the Ramblers came out quickly in the third frame, grabbing a lead and holding off the Buckeyes for a while. The perseverance of the Scarlet and Gray proved to be the difference, though, as they pulled themselves out of the early deficit and eventually grabbed the third set to complete the sweep.An impressive defensive performance by the Buckeyes held the Ramblers to only a .188 attack rate. Sophomore outside hitter Nicolas Szerszen, junior outside hitter Miles Johnson and senior outside hitter Christian Franceschi all contributed double-digit points for OSU. With the victory, the Buckeyes have now won all six sets they have played against the Ramblers this season.Saturday night’s matchup was another difficult test for OSU against the Flyers.In the first set, the Buckeyes jumped out to an early lead, but the Flyers wouldn’t go down easy. The Scarlet and Gray dug in, however, fending off the Flyers to go up 1-0.The second set started with an OSU surge, resulting in a solid, early lead. The tone was set for the match as the Buckeyes went on to take another set and force the Flyers into desperation mode.With their backs against the wall, the visitors were aggressive in the third set. The teams pushed back and forth, but the Flyers held off the Buckeyes and gained a two-point advantage to win the set and force a fourth frame. The final set remained just as competitive as the third. The score stayed close as the teams tried to enforce their will. Eventually, the Buckeyes were too much for Dayton to continue to fend off, and OSU grabbed the set to win the match.The Buckeyes had a .256 attack rate on the night while holding the Flyers to .225. Individually, Johnson added 21 points, Szerszen had 19 and junior setter Christy Blough contributed 43 assist on the night.“I really think they were great wins for us. Those are two good teams at the top of our conference (and) we need those,” Blough said. “I thought they were both good team wins, and I think everyone contributed both nights.”The Buckeyes are next set to travel to Long Beach, California, to take on UC Irvine on Thursday. The match is scheduled for an 8 p.m. start.
Now a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, Kurt is glad the team has continued to participate after his departure. “It’s been going for about four years strong and it’s continuing to develop,” Coleman said. “It’s got a lot of youth to it, a lot of growth and a lot of room to grow.” Though he has moved on, Coleman has influenced the chapter’s leadership. “Kurt is a guy I can always call, on and off the field, for advice,” said Donnie Evege, defensive back and chapter president. “I think he set a great example for myself and everyone else on the football team.” That example was most crucial in Coleman’s final year when Evege served as vice president. “Kurt showed me how to do it his last year here,” Evege said. “I followed in his footsteps, and when he was gone, I kind of had a smooth transition into it.” Despite remaining in contact with Uplifting Athletes, Coleman does not want to dictate its decision-making. “I don’t want to tell them what disease they should be trying to raise money for,” he said. “The whole fun for me was that I got to choose which rare disease to raise money for so I felt like I had done something.” Influencing decisions or not, Coleman has done something to make a name for the organization in Columbus. “Since Kurt was actually the one to start the chapter of Uplifting Athletes … he has certainly left his mark,” Duffy said. “He has done some great work there.” Former Buckeye safety Kurt Coleman has left an enduring legacy off the field. Coleman is a founding member of the Ohio State chapter of Uplifting Athletes, a nonprofit organization that raises money for rare diseases. Coleman’s work establishing the athlete-run organization was recently spotlighted by the Big Ten Network’s Give Big program. “When we did outreach to Ohio State University we kept hearing about Kurt Coleman’s fantastic work that he had done with Uplifting Athletes,” Give Big program consultant Jeanette Duffy said. “So it just seemed like a no-brainer once we spoke to Kurt himself.” Coleman and then-OSU fullback Matt Daniels started the campus chapter more than three years ago. “How I kind of came about it is my roommate Matt Daniels and I … our dads both had cancer,” Coleman said. “We wanted to try to do something for those diseases as well as other diseases (and) … we figured that it was a great opportunity to branch out and start our own chapter at Ohio State.” When remembering his time with the organization, Coleman talks about his contributions and the fun he had helping the community. “My (most fun) time was last year when I was able to take over the whole process myself,” he said. “We had an event at Damon’s (restaurant) … to raise awareness of CMT (Charcot-Marie-Tooth) disease, which (quarterback) Terrelle (Pryor’s) father and aunt have.” One focus of the organization is to include as many members of the football team as possible. “Coach (Jim) Tressel and all the guys, they rally behind all these type of ideas,” Coleman said. “It’s nothing new to them … people are very willing to follow and participate.”
Dr Tomasz Fryzlewicz, 56, a Polish heart doctor who had worked in the NHS since 2006 was the first to face restrictions under the new rules after failing the language test three times.But Britain was banned from testing European doctors for their clinical language skills because UK doctors do not have to face similar tests.The Patients Association said it was concerned that poor communication was leading to mistakes and misunderstandings between patients and medics.Katherine Murphy, chief executive of the Patients Association, said: “We hear from patients via our helpline that there are real issues with healthcare professionals from other countries, including problems with communication and a lack of understanding of processes and procedures.“If the NHS employs healthcare professionals from other countries, it must ensure that they are fully qualified and competent to carry out their duties and that they are competent enough in English to safely and effectively communicate with patients.“We are concerned that poor English skills may lead to mistakes and misunderstandings between healthcare colleagues or when patients are trying to explain their problems.” The RCS also said it was disappointing that the General Dental Council and Nursing and Midwifery Council had lower requirements for language proficiency than the GMC and has called for them to raise the bar.Dr Nigel Carter, of the Oral Health Foundation, said: “There are many excellent dental professionals coming to work in the UK from the EEA but some are hindered by an initial misunderstanding of clinical English language skills which could lead to communication issues and misinformation in the dentist/patient relationship.“These could develop into more serious problems if they are allowed to propagate and I support the RCS in their call for discussion about this while there is the opportunity for change following the recent referendum result.”A Department of Health spokesman said: “Patient safety is of the utmost importance, and we expect all healthcare professionals working in the UK to have a good command of the English language.”That is why we have tough rules, allowing the GMC and individual employers to test employees at and beyond the initial point of employment – and these cases represent just 0.002% of NHS staff.” However, those from outside Europe must pass the Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board (PLAB) to demonstrate they know medical terms, are clear about consent, can adequately describe a procedure and are aware of treatment side effects.“The number of EEA doctors and dentists facing allegations relating to their communication skills is an issue we think the Government should be taking very seriously,” said Professor Nigel Hunt, Dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons.“Currently EU law makes it impossible to insist applicants demonstrate their English skills in a clinical setting. However, post-Brexit negotiations offer an excellent opportunity to change this and ensure that testing is vigorous enough to ensure patient safety.“While the professional regulators are able to require proof of the clinical language skills of non-EU applicants, the same checks do not apply to EEA applicants and our fear is that this could be putting patients at risk.“We want the same rules to apply to all non-UK professionals, regardless of where in the world they come from.”Data from the General Dental Council also showed that one quarter of complaints made about poor communication related to European dentists even though they account for just 16 per cent of the workforce. Just 4.7 per cent related to practitioners from the rest of the world, who make up 11.5 per cent of dentists.Since basic language testing came into force in 2014, the GMC said more than 1,000 European doctors seeking registration in the UK have not satisfied their English language requirements. Dr Tomasz Fryzlewicz, 56, a Polish heart doctor faced restrictions after failing an English test three times European doctors are three times more likely to face disciplinary proceedings for poor English than those from further afield because they are exempt from stringent language tests under EU law, the Royal College of Surgeons has warned.The RCS claims that the safety of patients is at risk from medics who cannot communicate properly and is calling for the rules to be changed during Brexit negotiations.Freedom of Information data from the General Medical Council showed that 29 doctors from the European Economic Area (EEA) faced allegations relating to ‘inadequate knowledge of the English language’ during 2014 and 2015.Four doctors have since been suspended or had restrictions placed on their practice with a number of cases still to be decided by the GMC.By comparison just 10 doctors from outside Europe faced similar allegations even though they make up more than double the number of doctors, nurses or dentists as those from the continent – 26 per cent compared with 11 per cent.Under rules which came into force in 2014 doctors applying to the NHS from Europe only need to score 7.5 on the International English Language Testing System, which equates to basic conversational skills. Nurses and dentists still do not have to pass the same English language qualifications as doctors Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
He added: “That’s just wrong. You have to get it out, especially over the Christmas period. That’s just nasty.“I definitely won’t be going back there again.” Media outlets suggested the rat, filmed by a stunned Martin Peaple, was ‘running amok’ inside the Primark branch after-hours.The 28-year-old, from Bexley, posted the footage on social media, explaining: “Rat running loose in Primark, Bexleyheath, and turns out that staff [knew] it was there and just left it.”He joked that others should “check their shopping” as they “might find a surprise”.Mr Peaple told This Is Local London he was enjoying a Christmas drink with friends in a pub opposite the store when he went outside for a cigarette and saw the rat.“In the pub we heard there was a giant rat outside in Primark,” he said.“So we went and there it was, running up and down. The shop was shut and it was there all night.” A rat was spotted inside Primark Credit:Reuters Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. A rat apparently decided on a spot of last-minute Christmas shopping after it was spotted running around a Primark store in south-east London.The bargain-hunting rodent was seen scurrying around a window display after the budget retailer had apparently locked its doors in Bexleyheath on Christmas Eve. Facebook user Connie Smith responded to the video: “That rat looks very ill and will obviously be very stressed and scared in that situation. Perhaps people should have a little sympathy for the animal as there’s blatantly something wrong with it.”Another wrote: “A wild rat should run away, not with you. I think it’s someone’s pet that has got out.”A spokesperson for Primark said: “We can confirm that pest control were called on-site and following an investigation, have stated this was an isolate incident which has now been dealt with.”Meanwhile, this McDonald’s customer was left horrified about what he allegedly found at the bottom of his coffee.
The number of people dead and missing presumed dead after the Grenfell Tower disaster has risen to 79, police have revealed.Five of those people have so far been formally identified, said Metropolitan Police Commander Stuart Cundy.He told reporters the “awful reality” was that it might not be possible to identify all the victims. Some families have lost more than one member, he added.The announcement was followed by a minute’s silence at 11am across all Government buildings to remember the people who lost their lives and all those affected by the fire in north Kensington last week.His latest statement comes after police released new images from inside the burnt-out building. In a statement, residents criticised Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation for its reaction to the disaster.The group said: “In our meeting at Downing Street, we explained to the Prime Minister the anger of all residents towards the management of the estate over a long period of time, paving the way to this tragedy.”With the exception of very few junior officers, the estate managers have been invisible in the aftermath of the tragedy.”Mr Khan said the local community was “frustrated” and “angry” in the wake of the blaze after he attended a church service near the tower block in west London. His remarks came as Nick Paget-Brown, the Tory leader of Kensington and Chelsea council, insisted officials were on the ground “very soon” after the fire broke out following criticism from Mrs May, who said the support given to residents was “not good enough”.He also sidestepped questions over whether he felt guilty about the tragedy, telling BBC Radio 4’s The World At One: “I feel terrible about the whole position we find ourselves in. All I’m keen to say is there is an effective, co-ordinated relief effort on the ground and I’m sorry if people haven’t seen that.” Speaking outside St Clement’s Church, Mr Khan said: “There is a feeling from the community that they have been treated badly because some of them are poor.”The tragedy we’re seeing is because of the consequences of mistakes and neglect from politicians, from the council and from the Government.” The pictures show the damage inside the buildingCredit:Metropolitan Police He said it had been “incredibly emotional working in there”, adding: “On Saturday I went in myself and went to the top floor.”And it is incredibly hard to describe the devastation in some parts of that building.” Releasing a tranche of footage showing the aftermath of the blaze, Mr Cundy said: “Police teams continue their support to families, and make enquiries to cross check the number of those missing.”The news came as the Government announced those left homeless by the fire will be given at least £5,500 from an emergency fund.Residents will be given £500 in cash followed by a bank payment for the rest from Monday and will come from the £5 million fund announced by Theresa May on Friday. The pictures show the extent of the fireCredit:Metropolitan Police The Prime Minister insisted the Government was doing everything possible to help those caught up in the tragedy.Residents who met Mrs May in Downing Street over the weekend said while they welcomed the funding they had not been consulted before the announcement was made.They said: “We naturally welcome funds for those in need, though this does show once more the tendency to sideline residents’ views. New pictures have been released from the buildingCredit:Metropolitan Police The pictures were captured by a specialist police recovery teamCredit:Metropolitan Police Video footage inside the flats showed the charred remains of a kitchenCredit:PA / Metropolitan Police The move came as the official response to the crisis drew fresh condemnation from residents and London Mayor Sadiq Khan. Police have released new pictures from inside the towerCredit:Metropolitan Police Five people who had been reported missing after the disaster have been found safe and well, he added. Meanwhile, a company involved in the renovation of the tower was forced to deny cladding on the building was banned in the UK after comments made by Chancellor Philip Hammond.It was reported that the material used in the cladding covering Grenfell was Reynobond PE – a cheaper, more flammable version of two available options.Appearing on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Mr Hammond said: “My understanding is the cladding in question, this flammable cladding which is banned in Europe and the US, is also banned here.”John Cowley, managing director of CEP Architectural Facades, which produced rainscreen panels and windows for Grenfell Tower’s cladding sub-contractor Harley Facades Ltd, said: “Reynobond PE is not banned in the UK.”Current building regulations allow its use in both low-rise and high-rise structures.”The key question now is whether the overall design of the building’s complete exterior was properly tested and subsequently signed off by the relevant authorities including the fire officer, building compliance officer and architect before commencement of the project.” Mr Cundy said the death toll may still change, but not as significantly as it has in recent days.He fought back tears as he told reporters about the scene inside the 24-storey tower in north Kensington.Footage from inside the gutted building has been released, showing the extent of the damage caused by the blaze. “At No 10 yesterday, the Prime Minister assured the group that from now on residents would be consulted on a coordinated relief effort. This has not happened with these funds.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
The Rottweiler hounding Mrs Smith’s horseCredit:Caters She said: “A horse’s reaction is to flee danger and that’s what Ella’s was trying to do. There was nothing that could be done because we usually stop and stand to let dogs pass, but because it was at the horse’s legs, it wouldn’t stand still.“These incidents happen quite often where dogs are out-of-control near the horses. It was scary for my daughter. As soon as the dog got close, her horse was up in the air on two legs.”Mrs Smith, 40, has been a victim of a similar previous incident when a dog ran at her horse causing her to fall and leaving her with broken ribs.During the Rottweiler incident, which Mrs Smith filmed, she says the dog’s owner couldn’t hear her screams as their horses were harassed. Mrs Smith added: “It’s a worry for horse riders when you come across dogs off-lead because you never know how they or the horses are going to behave. I usually shout ‘the horse will kick’ and give the owner time to put their dog on a lead while we stop and stand.” A mother has shared footage of the terrifying moment her daughter was accosted by a snarling Rottweiler while out horse riding.Tracy Smith can be heard desperately screaming for the dog’s owner to control the pet as her daughter Ella clung on during the three-minute ordeal in Oxford.Fortunately Ella, 14, is an experienced rider and was able to stay mounted. However Mrs Smith has called for dog-owners to be more responsible when their pets are around horses. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Dog-owners are advised to train a reliable recall for their pets or keep them on a lead when a horse is nearby. 14-year-old Ella chased by ‘out of control’ Rottweiler Credit:Caters
Scotland Yard is carrying out an “urgent assessment” after a rape prosecution collapsed due to the late disclosure of evidence which undermined the case.The trial of Liam Allan, 22, was halted at Croydon Crown Court on Thursday, and the judge called for a review of disclosure of evidence by the Metropolitan Police, as well as an inquiry at the Crown Prosecution Service, The Times reported.Police are understood to have looked at thousands of phone messages when reviewing evidence but it was not until the prosecution was close to trial that Met officers disclosed messages between the complainant and her friends which cast doubt on the case against Mr Allan.The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said they offered no evidence in the case on Thursday, as it was decided “there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction”.Speaking outside court, Mr Allan told The Times: “I can’t explain the mental torture of the past two years. I feel betrayed by the system which I had believed would do the right thing – the system I want to work in.” “The CPS are under terrible pressure, as are the police. Both work hard but are badly under-resourced.”Crown court trials only work because of the co-operation and goodwill of advocates and the bench – but time pressures are making this increasingly difficult.”Because of the swingeing cuts that the Treasury continuously imposes, the system is not just creaking, it is about to croak.”A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “We are aware of this case being dismissed from court and are carrying out an urgent assessment to establish the circumstances which led to this action being taken.”We are working closely with the Crown Prosecution Service and keeping in close contact with the victim whilst this process takes place.”A spokesman for the CPS said: “A charge can only be brought if a prosecutor is satisfied that both stages of the Full Code test in the Code for Crown Prosecutors are met, that is, that there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction and that a prosecution is required in the public interest.”All prosecutions are kept under continuous review and prosecutors are required to take account of any change in circumstances as the case develops.”In November 2017, the police provided more material in the case of Liam Allan. Upon a review of that material, it was decided that there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction. Writing in the paper, prosecuting barrister and former Conservative MP Jerry Hayes said: “I told the judge that this was the most appalling failure of disclosure that I have ever encountered. “Therefore we offered no evidence in the case against Liam Allan at a hearing on December 14 2017.”We will now be conducting a management review together with the Metropolitan Police to examine the way in which this case was handled.” I can’t explain the mental torture of the past two years. I feel betrayed by the system which I had believed would do the right thingLiam Allen Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
A computer programmer has revealed how he was able to hack into Tinder accounts using just a phone number. Anand Prakash exposed a vulnerability in software which allows users of the dating app to conveniently log in to their accounts without entering a password. The 24-year-old said hackers could gain access to a Tinder account “within seconds” if they knew the mobile phone number the victim used to log in to the app via Facebook’s Account Kit. “If the hacker knew the victim’s phone number used to sign in they could have… Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. He said the hacker would have “full control over the victim’s account”, gaining access to their private chats, personal information and allow them to interact with other users.
A man was also treated at the scene for shock.A Health and Safety Executive spokesman said: “Inspectors have attended the site and are making ongoing inquiries in conjunction with the Metropolitan Police to investigate the circumstances of the incident.”As the investigation is ongoing we are unable to comment further at this time.” Photo shows bricks scattered across the pavement where they fell from a craneCredit:Phil Harris “Our thoughts are with Matthew and his family at this time. Any donations to assist them would be gratefully received.”Within a matter of hours more than £3,000 of a £20,000 target had been reached.Officers from the Met Police attended the scene at 9.38am on Tuesday, where bystanders were helping the woman who had been spotted lying in a pile of rubble and broken wood. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. A woman has died after being hit by a pallet of bricks that fell from a building site crane.The 29-year-old, named locally as Michaela Boor, died in hospital on Thursday as a result of her injuries after she was hit by debris after bricks fell from a building site crane in Burdett Road, Tower Hamlets, on Tuesday morning.A fund set up to raise money for the family of the young mother has received thousands in donations.Claire Thomas, from Matrix Construction where Michaela’s dad Matthew Boor works, set up the JustGiving page to help the family.Writing on the page, she said: “One of our employees Matthew Boor was called away from work yesterday, following the tragic accident at Mile End – His work colleagues have asked us to start this page to help him and his family at this difficult time.
A mother of four left paralysed after being “catapulted” from her bed while having sex is suing the manufacturer for seven-figure damages at the High Court.Claire Busby suffered life-changing damage to her spine after she toppled off the end of the “defective” bed while switching positions during intercourse. The 46-year-old from Maidenhead, Berks, appeared at the High Court in a wheelchair yesterday, where she is taking legal action against Berkshire Bed Company, trading as Beds Are Uzzz.The court heard the bed was one of five delivered to Ms Busby’s then home in August 2013 when she was renovating the property in Theresa May’s constituency. Ms Busby, a successful businesswoman in the property industry, was injured just a week after the bed’s delivery.She told the court that she was kneeling in the middle of the bed performing a sexual act on her partner, John Marshall, when she decided to move position and “swung her legs” from underneath her, before laying back on the bed.At that point, she said the bed gave way and she fell off the end, landing dangerously on her head.“I was positioned kneeling over him,” she told Judge Barry Cotter QC. “I was kneeling over him and my right hand was touching him, maybe my left hand was touching his leg. I was half way down the bed. “I spun around, I put my hand down and then I felt like I was catapulted off the back of the bed,” Ms Busby told the court.”My head hit the floor, I fell to the side and then I heard like a spring in my body snap,” she added.Ms Busby claims the two halves of the divan bed, which made up the base, were not properly fastened together and two “gliders” – or feet – were missing from the end of the bed, creating a height difference between one end and the other.Her barrister Winston Hunter QC said she expected the mattress to support her weight as she lay back on the bed, but that it failed to do so and she continued moving “backwards and downwards”.He told the court: “It is the claimant’s case that the point at which she left the bed is precisely the location where the different height of the two divans was at its maximum. “It represented the area where the mattress was most likely to ‘fall away’ due to the fact that it was partially unsupported.”Mr Hunter said it was “accepted that the particular circumstances of the accident are unusual”, but it was enough for there to have been “some foresight of some loss of balance in the use of the bed” for the firm to be found liable. Berkshire Bed Company denies culpability for Ms Busby’s injuries, with its lawyers arguing the bed was properly assembled at the time of delivery. They also said that even if the two gliders were missing by the time of the accident, that would not have caused the bed to lose balance in the way suggested by Ms Busby.Neil Block QC, for the firm, said: “It is overwhelmingly likely that, whatever her actions, they were too close to the edge of the bed and she simply lost balance and toppled backwards.”The firm sells super king-size divan bed bases for as much as £1,500 online, with the cheapest costing £147. The hearing at the High Court continues. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
Shoplifting costs the retail industry millions of pounds each year It was hoped the threshold would save the courts time and money on cases, but it is feared that it has led to the effective decriminalisation of shoplifting.Organised gangs of shoplifters are thought to be exploiting the system by travelling around the country and hitting multiple stores, while always remaining careful to stay under the £200 threshold.But the cost to the businesses is often passed onto shoppers in the form of rising prices.James Martin, crime and security adviser to the British Retail Consortium, said: “These figures indicate that, despite the best efforts of our members, criminals are increasingly targeting supermarkets.”Ultimately, the costs are borne by everyday shoppers and those who rely on retail for their livelihoods.”We acknowledge the difficult resourcing and prioritisation decisions which police forces face, but it is clearly time that every police force gives retail crime the strategic priority it deserves.”Association of Convenience Stores chief executive James Lowman said: “The numbers of reported thefts pale in comparison to the reality of retail crime. In total, we estimated over 950,000 incidents of theft in convenience stores last year.“In the convenience sector, more than half of thefts are now not reported due to frustration with police forces not investigating or prosecuting thieves. Some police forces have introduced arbitrary thresholds below which they no longer investigate thefts, ranging from £100 to £200. Shoplifting offences are on the rise following the introduction a £200 threshold before criminals are pursued.Figures obtained from 25 police forces across England and Wales suggest there has been at least a seven per cent increase in the number of offences reported by supermarkets over the past four years.Officers were called to investigate more than 78,000 shoplifting incidents in 2017, up from just over 72,000 in 2014.The figures also suggested a rise in the number of pick-pocketing incidents at supermarkets, where shoppers have their purses and wallets stolen by opportunistic thieves.But the true scale of the problem is thought to be hidden because many smaller stores do not bother to report shoplifting offences because they have no faith that anything will be done.Last year the Telegraph reported how retailers were angry at the introduction of a £200 threshold for shoplifting offences. “Adopting these thresholds effectively prices small stores out of receiving any response to thefts against them, and publicising these policies encourages more theft and gives the impression of these offences being decriminalised. “Challenging offenders in store often leads to violent incidents which have a huge personal impact on retailers and shopworkers. Only Government action can break the cycle of more theft, violence, inadequate police response and ineffective sanctions.”John Apter, chairman of the Police Federation acknowledged that shoplifting was not a priority crime for stretched forces.He said: “These figures mirror the increase seen in many other types of crime. And, although they may not be considered the most serious of offences, it is important those responsible are not allowed to do as they wish without the fear of being caught.”The reality is that officers can be tied up, sometimes for hours dealing with shoplifters, preventing them from answering other 999 calls which may be more urgent. It’s all about priorities.”He went on: “The sad fact is that as forces struggle to meet 999-call demand, incidents such as these are increasingly likely not to be attended by officers at all which, as a serving police constable with 26 years’ service, I find quite shocking.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Most hard pressed police forces will only now dispatch an officer to investigate if there has been a threat of violence against a member of staff.The £200 threshold was introduced as part of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 and means anyone accused of “low value shoplifting” no longer has to attend court and can plead guilty by post in the same way as a speeding motorist.
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Chief Master Matthew Marsh, the High Court judge who made the ruling, was told that Mrs Ninian had tried to dissuade her husband from taking his own life, had contacted the police and helped with their inquiries, and had not been prosecuted. The retired businessman had been diagnosed with progressive supranuclear palsy in 2013. He had difficulty swallowing, could not move his eyes, had poor mobility and rarely spoke. He had instructed lawyers to prepare a statement in which he said his wife had been opposed to his decision, had not pressurised him to make it and only accompanied him to Zurich because he could not travel there unaided.The couple, who married in 1983, lived in London together and had no children.Mrs Ninian told the judge: “A few months before his death, I asked him if he got any enjoyment out of life at all and he gave me the thumbs down.”I spent a year trying to get Alex to change his mind but he was solid in his decision that he wanted to be dignified to the end, which is why he chose to end his life. He faced a future that he did not want.”Alex was my soulmate for 40 years and it is very hard to cope with losing him. Everything that I did for him I did because he asked me to, and because I loved and cared for him too much to refuse.” A woman who accompanied her husband to Dignitas can claim his £1.8 million estate, a High Court judge has ruled in a test case.Sarah Ninian, 63, travelled with her husband Alex, 84, to the famous Switzerland clinic in November 2017 after he was diagnosed with a progressive incurable disease and was unable to get there by himself.Mrs Ninian, who was named as the sole beneficiary in her husband’s will, could have been blocked access to his estate, worth an estimated £1.8 million, because of laws barring inheritance when a beneficiary has been involved in a person’s “unlawful killing”.But at a High Court hearing today she successfully applied for the so-called “forfeiture rule” to be waived or modified in her case.Solicitor Gary Rycroft, from Lancaster-based firm Joseph A. Jones & Co, told The Telegraph that it could be a test case which will lead to greater transparency when people accompany their relatives to suicide clinics but are not charged with any offences.”It could reassure people that they can come forward and not worry that they will be cut out of their loved-ones’ inheritance,” he said.
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Bafta voters chose as best live event the coverage of the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance, rather than the BBC’s coverage of the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! was named best reality show for a series in which Holly Willoughby stood in for Ant McPartlin, who took time off after admitting to drink driving and addiction problems.Louis Theroux won his first Bafta since winning the Richard Dimbleby Award for presenting in 2002, this time for his Altered States documentary. Fiona Shaw won best supporting actress for her role as spy chief Carolyn Martens in Killing Eve, her first Bafta nomination. She called the job “probably the greatest pleasure of my life” and thankedWaller-Bridge for her “glass-shattering genius and wayward imagination”. Patrick Melrose, the Sky Atlantic drama based on the novels of Edward St Aubyn and starring Benedict Cumberbatch, beat A Very English Scandal in the best mini-series category and Cumberbatch beat Hugh Grant to best actor.“I’m used to being a bridesmaid, not the bride,” Cumberbatch said.But Ben Whishaw won best supporting actor for his performance in the latter as Norman Scott, lover of the Liberal leader Jeremy Thorpe.Best single drama went to Killed By My Debt, a BBC Three drama based on the life of Jerome Rogers, a 20-year-old motorcycle courier who killed himself after two unpaid £65 traffic fines spiralled to £1,000. If the past 12 months have also seen women promoted to top presenting jobs at the BBC, the Bafta host, Graham Norton, was on hand to poke fun at the corporation’s gender pay gap. Referring to the all-female line-up of Newsnight and Fiona Bruce hosting Question Time, Norton quipped: “It’s not only great for equality, but it saves the BBC a fortune.”Ruth Wilson, whose mini-series Mrs Wilson was among the nominees, said Britain still lags behind the US when it comes to strong female roles.“I think that American TV has had women at the forefront of their TV shows for a long time. We just need to catch up here,” she said. Ruth Wilson criticised the lack of female roles in British TV roles, saying the UK is lagging behind the USCredit:David Fisher/BAFTA/REX/REX Show more In a category dominated by women, Julia Davis won the best scripted comedy category for Sally4Ever. Lucy Worsley won the specialist factual award for her documentary on the Suffragettes, and Baroness Bakewell was honoured with the Bafta Fellowship.Virgin Media’s Must-See Moment, the only Bafta category chosen by the public, went to the scene in Bodyguard where Keeley Hawes’ character, Home Secretary Julia Montague, was assassinated. A Doctor Who episode re-telling the story of Rosa Parks was a runner-up. But Hawes said: “I have noticed a change, I think we all have. In terms of content, so much more is being made and so much more is being made with women in mind. They’ve been hugely successful shows, which goes to show it’s what people want.” It was the year that women dominated television, from the first female Doctor Who to Killing Eve and the killing off of Keeley Hawes in Bodyguard.The Bafta TV awards stuck to the script, with Killing Eve winning best drama, accepted by its creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge, and Bodyguard’s most heart-stopping scene being named the year’s must-see moment.Bafta bent its rules to allow its inclusion, as the drama category is usually restricted to shows that have their premiere in the UK and Killing Eve was first broadcast in the US.The best actress award went to Jodie Comer as Killing Eve’s assassin, beating her co-star Sandra Oh and Hawes.A tearful Comer dedicated the award to her grandmother, who died before the show began. “She never got to see Villanelle but she was the life and soul of everything when she was here. She used to say ‘You get it off me, you know.’ Nana Frances, you were absolutely right all along.” Jodie Comer, who starred in the hit TV series Killing Eve, won the award for best actress at the Bafta TV awards 2019Credit:Grant Pollard/Invision
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. A GCSE English examiner has warned that marking guidance is so poor that students face being given the wrong grades in the subject.They claimed that fellow examiners for the exam board AQA were left “shocked” and “horrified” by the scripts chosen as guides for marking.In a series of now deleted messages on Twitter, the anonymous examiner alleged that “the standardisation scripts are all over the place” for this year’s English language GCSE.AQA cautioned that these were “personal opinions” adding that they do not “reflect the overall picture”.But the examiner’s claims will add to students’ fears that they will be left disappointed with their results in August. The whistle-blowing examiner said that there was “no debate at pre-standardisation among the senior examiners”.They added: “That means that the meeting where the standard is evaluated and agreed was a farce. We had examiners horrified at the standard.”Problems in the standards were flagged by the number of markers failing to spot elements supposed to ensure consistent standards.In one, the pupil was given 14 out of 40 when the “correct” score should have been 21, and in another a pupil was awarded 26 marks when a more senior examiner deemed the “correct” mark to be 40.They told the Times Education Supplement magazine that some examiners were so unhappy with this year’s standardisation materials they used those for 2018 instead.Claire Thomson, AQA’s director of operations, said: “These personal opinions, which the user has now deleted, don’t reflect the overall picture.“Getting students the results they deserve is our top priority and we have very effective quality assurance measures in place to make sure examiners mark to a high standard.”Ofqual, the exams watchdog, uses a system called “comparable outcomes” to ensure that roughly the same proportion of pupils get similar grades each year, and those who are the first to take the new, reformed courses are not at a disadvantage compared to other cohorts. This summer is the second year that students are taking revamped GCSEs in a raft of subjects, and the third year of the new English literature, English language and maths exams.The new courses were part of a package of reforms by Michael Gove, the former education secretary, designed to toughen up syllabuses, make courses more linear, and cut down on the number of students getting A*s.Last month, the head of exams watchdog warned schools to be braced for “more variation than usual” in this year’s GCSE and A-level results, as reforms take their toll.
“Anyone wanting to play their part in helping our planet amid the current climate change challenge we’re all facing should buy British, locally produced beef reared to some of the highest and environmentally sustainable standards in the world.”Goldsmiths is the latest university to alter its menu in an attempt to cut its carbon footprint. Cambridge University’s catering services has not served any beef or lamb since 2016 is instead “promoting the consumption of more vegetarian and vegan foods”.Meanwhile, Ulster University, the University of East Anglia and a number of colleges at Oxford and Cambridge have introduced “meat free Mondays”. Dave Gorman, director of sustainability at Edinburgh University, said that currently 40 per cent of the menu options in campus cafes are vegetarian or vegan and they aim to increase this to 50 per cent.Westminster University has a “part time carnivore loyalty card”, whereby students who have purchased four vegetarian meals in the canteen get a free vegetarian meal. Earlier this year, an Oxford college president demanded that octopus is removed from the menu as part of a drive to make disadvantaged students feel more “comfortable”. Baroness Jan Royall, head of Somerville, said she wants to “change the culture” of the college to make sure it is “welcoming for all”. They were once regarded as staples of the students’ canteen. But now burgers, lasagne, chilli and tacos have been taken off the menu at a London university which has banned beef as part of its efforts to fight climate change.From next month, Goldsmiths, University of London has said it will remove all beef product from its campus shops and cafes. Students will also face a 10p levy on bottles of water and single-use plastic cups when the academic year starts to discourage use of the products.It is part of a new drive by the university to become carbon neutral by 2025, which involves building more solar panels and switching to a “clean” energy supplier.Academic courses will also be reviewed to give students more opportunities to study climate change as part of their degree.Professor Frances Corner, the new Warden of Goldsmiths said that “declaring a climate emergency cannot be empty words”. The beef ban is the first announcement she has made since taking over as the head of the university earlier this month.Prof Corner, who used to be head of the London College of Fashion, has championed ethical designs and describes herself as a “fashion activist”. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Goldsmiths, University of London has said it will remove all beef product from its campus shops and cafes She has previously warned of the dangers of wearing fake fur, arguing that it makes wearing real fur “culturally acceptable”. Prof Corner said: “The growing global call for organisations to take seriously their responsibilities for halting climate change is impossible to ignore. “Though I have only just arrived at Goldsmiths, it is immediately obvious that our staff and students care passionately about the future of our environment and that they are determined to help deliver the step change we need to cut our carbon footprint drastically and as quickly as possible.”The beef ban was praised by climate change activists but elsewhere it was criticised as an “an overly simplistic approach”.Stuart Roberts, vice president of the National Farmers’ Union, said there was a “lack of understanding or recognition between British beef and beef produced elsewhere”.He said that the union has been encouraging public institutions such as schools and universities to back British farming and source locally-produced food.”Tackling climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time but singling out one food product is clearly an overly simplistic approach,” he said.”Our standards of beef production in the UK are among the most efficient in the world, with British livestock grazing in extensive, grass-based systems – meaning a greenhouse gas footprint 2.5 times smaller than the global average.
– says respondents would be in breach if project continuesFormer Attorney General Anil NandlallIn spite of an ‘order nisi certiorari’ being issued by Chief Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards against them, Mayor Patricia Chase-Green and Town Clerk Royston King have committed to ensuring that paid parking is re-implemented in Georgetown from today. This announcement has raised eyebrows among legal experts and stakeholders alike, and according to former Attorney General Anil Nandlall, that ‘order nisi certiorari’ has placed a hold on paid parking until the High Court hearing, scheduled for February 27, before Justice Brassington Reynolds.In an interview on Sunday, the Attorney noted that if the city were to continue implementing the project or force anyone to pay for parking before the hearing, this would be tantamount to violating a court order.“A writ of certiorari is one of the prerogative remedies which is granted to quash decisions made by public officers, public authorities or statutory tribunals. The order is granted, firstly by an order nisi being issued calling upon the other side to show cause why a particular decision should not be quashed.”“When that order nisi is issued, it puts that particular decision, which it imputes, upon hold until the (respondents) show or does not show cause. If the other side succeeds in showing cause why the order should not be made absolute, then the order nisi is discharged.”From left: Public Relations consultant Kit Nascimento, Town Clerk Royston King, Mayor Patricia Chase Green and Head of Smart City Solutions Amir Oren during the press briefing at National Communications Network obn FridayHe noted that if the respondents do fail to show cause, then the order nisi is upheld and made absolute, thus quashing the decision.“What that means, therefore, is that until the case is concluded, the decision (in this case) the parking meter contract and its implementation has been put on hold by the order nisi.”In violationNandlall observed that if vehicular clamping were to resume today, then they would be violating a court order. Flouting a High Court order, Nandlall observed, was a serious matter.“And therefore, the Chief Justice should be requested to summon (respondents) before her to answer for violating the court order. Because a court order (would) be violated and that is not a matter that should be treated lightly.”The High Court order was granted on Thursday last after an application for judicial review was made by Attorney Kamal Ramkarran, on behalf of Mohendra Arjune. Georgetown Mayor Patricia Chase Green, Town Clerk Royston King and unspecified City Councillors were named as the respondents.The writ had stated that, “an order nisi of certiorari be and is hereby granted to quash the decision of the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown to enter into an agreement on or around 13 May, 2016”.In addition, the order prohibited the respondents from making “any amendments thereto for the establishment of parking meters in Georgetown with (Smart City Solutions – SCSI) and all acts and things thereafter which flowed from that decision”.The order also curtails the power of the Town Clerk. According to the High Court order, “this court orders that an order nisi of certiorari be and is hereby granted to quash the decision of the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown and the Town Clerk empowering and authorising the Town Clerk to sign and operationalise contracts with (SCSI) for the establishment of parking meters in Georgetown and all acts and things done or caused to be done thereafter flowing from that decision”.It also revoked “the decision of the Mayor and Councillors and anyone acting by or through them or under their directions or instructions or on their behalf to exempt persons or categories of persons from paying fees for parking in the City of Georgetown and being subject to penalties for parking in Georgetown”.The respondents also have to show cause against all the orders made by the Chief Justice to quash their decision to enter into the contract, which has already caused weekly mass protests in front of City Hall.Their day in court is set for February 27, 2017, before Justice Brassington Reynolds. Should they fail to comply, the document noted, they will be held in contempt of court.UnfazedSince the implementation of the order, however, the Mayor and Town Clerk have remained unfazed.During a pre-recorded press conference at National Communications Network (NCN) on Saturday, Mayor Chase Green was quoted as saying that “as of Monday next, we will resume the implementation of the parking meter project.”The statements have been heavily criticised, with lawyers from the lobby group Movement Against Parking Meters expressing consternation during a town hall meeting on Saturday.The issue is a hot topic among citizens, in particular on social media platforms. Already, there have been weekly mass protests outside of City Hall.There is another court order concerning the parking meters in the High Court, scheduled to be deliberated on by Justice Reynolds today . This one, which was brought by New Building Society (NBS), features the Town Clerk and Communities Minister, Ronald Bulkan as respondents.In that writ, the respondents have to “show cause why a writ of certiorari should not be issued to quash his approval/decision to approve the Parking Meter By-Laws made under the Municipal and District Councils Act, Chapter 28:01 made on or about the 23rd day of January, 2017, in that the said approval or decision to approve was of no legal effect and was made unlawfully and in breach of statute.” (Guyana Times) Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedM&CC flouts court order, clamps vehiclesFebruary 22, 2017In “Business”M&CC shows ‘gross disrespect’ for Chief Justice’s Court OrderFebruary 18, 2017In “latest news”Justice Reynolds denies ‘stay’ to put on hold M&CC’s paid parking projectMarch 6, 2017In “Court”,– says respondents would be in breach if project continuesFormer Attorney General Anil NandlallIn spite of an ‘order nisi certiorari’ being issued by Chief Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards against them, Mayor Patricia Chase-Green and Town Clerk Royston King have committed to ensuring that paid parking is re-implemented in Georgetown from today. This announcement has raised eyebrows among legal experts and stakeholders alike, and according to former Attorney General Anil Nandlall, that ‘order nisi certiorari’ has placed a hold on paid parking until the High Court hearing, scheduled for February 27, before Justice Brassington Reynolds.In an interview on Sunday, the Attorney noted that if the city were to continue implementing the project or force anyone to pay for parking before the hearing, this would be tantamount to violating a court order.“A writ of certiorari is one of the prerogative remedies which is granted to quash decisions made by public officers, public authorities or statutory tribunals. The order is granted, firstly by an order nisi being issued calling upon the other side to show cause why a particular decision should not be quashed.”“When that order nisi is issued, it puts that particular decision, which it imputes, upon hold until the (respondents) show or does not show cause. If the other side succeeds in showing cause why the order should not be made absolute, then the order nisi is discharged.”From left: Public Relations consultant Kit Nascimento, Town Clerk Royston King, Mayor Patricia Chase Green and Head of Smart City Solutions Amir Oren during the press briefing at National Communications Network obn FridayHe noted that if the respondents do fail to show cause, then the order nisi is upheld and made absolute, thus quashing the decision.“What that means, therefore, is that until the case is concluded, the decision (in this case) the parking meter contract and its implementation has been put on hold by the order nisi.”In violationNandlall observed that if vehicular clamping were to resume today, then they would be violating a court order. Flouting a High Court order, Nandlall observed, was a serious matter.“And therefore, the Chief Justice should be requested to summon (respondents) before her to answer for violating the court order. Because a court order (would) be violated and that is not a matter that should be treated lightly.”The High Court order was granted on Thursday last after an application for judicial review was made by Attorney Kamal Ramkarran, on behalf of Mohendra Arjune. Georgetown Mayor Patricia Chase Green, Town Clerk Royston King and unspecified City Councillors were named as the respondents.The writ had stated that, “an order nisi of certiorari be and is hereby granted to quash the decision of the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown to enter into an agreement on or around 13 May, 2016”.In addition, the order prohibited the respondents from making “any amendments thereto for the establishment of parking meters in Georgetown with (Smart City Solutions – SCSI) and all acts and things thereafter which flowed from that decision”.The order also curtails the power of the Town Clerk. According to the High Court order, “this court orders that an order nisi of certiorari be and is hereby granted to quash the decision of the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown and the Town Clerk empowering and authorising the Town Clerk to sign and operationalise contracts with (SCSI) for the establishment of parking meters in Georgetown and all acts and things done or caused to be done thereafter flowing from that decision”.It also revoked “the decision of the Mayor and Councillors and anyone acting by or through them or under their directions or instructions or on their behalf to exempt persons or categories of persons from paying fees for parking in the City of Georgetown and being subject to penalties for parking in Georgetown”.The respondents also have to show cause against all the orders made by the Chief Justice to quash their decision to enter into the contract, which has already caused weekly mass protests in front of City Hall.Their day in court is set for February 27, 2017, before Justice Brassington Reynolds. Should they fail to comply, the document noted, they will be held in contempt of court.UnfazedSince the implementation of the order, however, the Mayor and Town Clerk have remained unfazed.During a pre-recorded press conference at National Communications Network (NCN) on Saturday, Mayor Chase Green was quoted as saying that “as of Monday next, we will resume the implementation of the parking meter project.”The statements have been heavily criticised, with lawyers from the lobby group Movement Against Parking Meters expressing consternation during a town hall meeting on Saturday.The issue is a hot topic among citizens, in particular on social media platforms. Already, there have been weekly mass protests outside of City Hall.There is another court order concerning the parking meters in the High Court, scheduled to be deliberated on by Justice Reynolds today . This one, which was brought by New Building Society (NBS), features the Town Clerk and Communities Minister, Ronald Bulkan as respondents.In that writ, the respondents have to “show cause why a writ of certiorari should not be issued to quash his approval/decision to approve the Parking Meter By-Laws made under the Municipal and District Councils Act, Chapter 28:01 made on or about the 23rd day of January, 2017, in that the said approval or decision to approve was of no legal effect and was made unlawfully and in breach of statute.” (Guyana Times)
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedFormer GRDB GM, Deputy GM arraigned for 34 fraud related chargesOctober 20, 2017In “Court”Former GRDB Accountant slapped with 39 fraud charges, remandedMarch 6, 2019In “Court”Hassan’s fate on GRDB to be decided by board later this weekNovember 9, 2016In “Crime” Former accountant of the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB), Peter Ramcharran was on Tuesday arrested in Canada.Arrested : Peter RamcharranThis was confirmed by Head of the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) Sydney James in other sections of the media.An arrest warrant was issued for Ramcharran by Chief Magistrate Ann Mc Lennan after he was absent when several fraud charges were read against him earlier this month.The charges filed against Ramcharran were in relation to falsification of accounts while he was employed at that entity from 2011 to 2015.This publication understands that the warrant for Ramcharran’s arrest was forwarded to the Canadian authorities who managed to find the former accountant after checks were made based on immigration and other records.It is expected that the Canadian authorities will initiate proceedings for Ramcharran to return to Guyana.In May of this year, six former members of the Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) were arrested and subsequently charged with fraudulent omission.Charged and placed on $500,000 bail were People’s Progressive Party Members of Parliament Dharamkumar Seeraj and Nigel Dharamlall; former Deputy General Manager of GRDB, Ricky Ramraj; former GRDB General Manager Jagnarine Singh; former GRDB Board member Badrie Persaud; and former Deputy Permanent Secretary (Finance) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Prema Roopnarine.The charges alleged that in 2011, the defendants omitted to enter some $52 million in the GRDB ledger; while the second charge stated that the then board members omitted to enter a sum of $77.3 million into the said ledger.Other charges read that between the years 2014 and 2015, the sums of $130 million, $9.7 million and $145 million were respectively omitted from the GRDB register.They were represented by a team of attorneys comprising Priya Manickchand, Anil Nandlall, Sase Gunraj and Glenn Hanoman.Nandlall had contended that the charges should not have been instituted because there allegedly is no evidence to support them.