Monthly Archives: September 2019

Cardinals Levi Brown Traded To Steelers

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Arizona Cardinals’ Levi Brown, 29, is leaving the team for the Pittsburgh Steelers according to The Associated Press.An anonymous source with knowledge of the deal says Brown is being traded for a conditional draft pick. Once Brown passes a physical, the deal should be final.Brown was the fifth overall pick in the 2007 draft by the Cardinals, but failed to live up to expectations. After being moved to different positions; missing all of 2012 season with a torn tricep; and giving up three sacks in their season opener, head coach Bruce Arians lost all faith in the big man.The Associated Press reports that he will be replaced by Bradley Sowell, claimed off waivers from the Indianapolis Colts on Sept. 1. Sowell played in 10 games for Indianapolis as an undrafted rookie last season while Arians was offensive coordinator, then interim head coach.The Steelers’ next game will take place in New York  against the Jets on October 13. read more

We Put Bryce Harper And Manny Machado On A Bunch Of Different

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We are now less than a week away from almost all pitchers and catchers reporting, and the two biggest free agents on the market — Manny Machado and Bryce Harper — have yet to sign. The rumor mill around them continues to swirl, but we’re tired of not knowing for sure where these two will play this year. So we thought we’d take matters into our own hands, instead of simply waiting around for the latest hot-stove updates.To that end, we called on our friends at Out of the Park Baseball (OOTP), a strategic simulation game that allows players to put on their general manager hats and run their own teams. We asked them to simulate out the careers of Harper and Machado a bunch of times under scenarios where they sign with a bunch of different teams. Think of it as the multiverse of MLB possibilities that still could play out, depending on where these two superstars end up signing.It’s important to note that this is all guided by the game’s artificial intelligence, so it’s based on a simulation engine primarily intended for fun gameplay.1Though it can be a pretty serious simulation, as far as these things go. Perhaps you’ve heard of the soccer sim Football Manager and its notoriously addictive qualities? OOTP is essentially the same game, except for baseball. Having said all that, in the true spirit of J. Henry Waugh’s Universal Baseball Association, what if …… Machado signs with the White Sox?Frequency: 80 percent of simulations2OOTP ran 25 sample offseasons for us, tracking how often each player signed with which team.Average contract: Eight years for $198 millionSix-year team wins: 78.7 per seasonSix-year WAR: 6.0 per seasonBest playoff result: Loses divisional series in 2021Machado is one of the brightest stars in the OOTP universe, with an overall rating of 77 out of 80 (using the traditional 20-80 scouting scale). If he were to sign with the White Sox, one of his most frequently rumored suitors in real life, OOTP sees him having a tremendous individual debut in Chicago, putting together an All-Star season worth 6.5 wins above replacement. But the White Sox would have to wait until 2020 to improve as a team, leaping from 63 wins in 2019 to 92 in 2020, with Machado once again having a strong 5.8-WAR season. Chicago would average 92 wins per season in 2020 and ’21, making the playoffs both years, but they would top out with a tough five-game loss in the American League Division Series in 2021, then drop down to 80 wins in 2022 as Machado’s teammates regress.He would average 5.7 WAR per season over the next two years, but the Sox would miss the playoffs both seasons, with Machado opting out of his contract to join the New York Mets on a five-year, $197.5 million deal before the 2025 season. (Chicago would be fine without him, making the American League Championship Series in 2025 and 2026.) In New York, Machado’s individual numbers would decline to an average of 4.1 WAR per season, but he would help the 2028 Mets reach the World Series — where, in classic Mets fashion, they would lose to the Astros in seven games. After bouncing to the Nationals and Rockies in the early 2030s, Machado would retire in October 2032 with a JAWS score of 63.4, which should easily earn him a place in the Hall of Fame.… Machado signs with the Padres?Frequency: 20 percent of simulationsAverage contract: Eight years for $212 millionSix-year team wins: 83.3 per seasonSix-year WAR: 5.0 per seasonBest playoff result: Loses league championship series in 2024If Machado were to sign with San Diego, OOTP’s AI thinks that he would make about $14 million more over an eight-year contract than he would with the White Sox. But how would his Padres do on the field? In this universe, Machado would have an incredible initial campaign in Southern California, putting up 7.5 WAR and winning the National League’s MVP in 2019. His team, though, would only improve from 66 to 76 wins, good for third place in the NL West, and Machado would later struggle to repeat his amazing debut season. The simulations have him averaging just 4.1 WAR per season in 2020-21, with the Padres winning only 71 games a year. But in 2022, Machado would bounce back with 5.2 WAR, and San Diego would win 95 games, making the divisional series. It’s part of a three-year playoff surge for the Padres, peaking with 100 wins in 2024 — but that team is projected to crash out of the playoffs with a disappointing five-game NLCS loss to the Dodgers.That offseason, Machado would opt out of his initial contract and sign a five-year, $157.5 million deal with the expansion Memphis Scouts — which are a thing in this universe! — where he would spend the next five seasons playing reasonably well (4.2 WAR per year), but losing so many ballgames would surely give him flashbacks to the horrid 2018 Orioles. The best season of Machado’s final years is forecast to be an out-of-nowhere 4.3-WAR season with the 101-win Cincinnati Reds in 2032, but that team would ultimately lose in the divisional series. In September 2035, Machado would retire from pro baseball as a probable Hall of Famer.… Machado signs somewhere else?While OOTP’s AI thinks Chicago and San Diego are the destinations most likely for Machado, it also forced him onto the Phillies, Yankees and Twins for the sake of the full multiverse. The first two outcomes are about a wash individually, with Machado nearing 7 WAR in his best simulated season for each team and producing roughly the same total WAR (33.9 in New York, 32.6 in Philly). He would also stay longer in each city: seven years with the Phillies before opting out to join the Giants and the full eight-year contract span with the Yankees. But in terms of team performance, Machado wouldn’t win a World Series in either Philadelphia or New York, coming closest with a seven-game ALCS loss in 2022 as part of his Yankees timeline. It’s kind of a sad set of outcomes for a pair of teams that you’d think would offer Machado the greatest chance of team success. As for the Twins, they would be very successful with Machado, winning 90.2 games per season in his five years in Minnesota, including a World Series berth in 2021. But he would also opt out of that contract as early as possible, moving on to sign a massive deal with the Giants. Such is the way of Minnesota sports. So where should each star sign? If these OOTP simulations are any indication, it looks like Harper and the Cardinals would be best off with him playing right field in St. Louis, and Machado should lean toward manning the hot corner for the Padres. But those are but two options in the multiverse of possible outcomes. The only thing that we are 100 percent certain about is that at least one of these teams should sign these guys now. Stars like Machado and Harper shouldn’t still be going into spring training without a deal in place — for their own sake and for the sake of fan bases whose teams can use them to compete this season.Special thanks to Richard Grisham and Out of the Park Developments for their help with this story. Let’s move on to Harper, whose future is more difficult to read than Machado’s. OOTP’s AI predicted that he’d sign with any of four teams — the Giants (64 percent), Cardinals (20 percent), Padres (12 percent) and Dodgers (4 percent) — and that’s not even the full spate of his commonly rumored options. But let’s peer into OOTP’s crystal ball anyway. What if …… Harper signs with the Giants?Frequency: 64 percent of simulationsAverage contract: Seven years for $175 millionSix-year team wins: 82.1 per seasonSix-year WAR: 3.3 per seasonBest playoff result: No playoffsThe Giants are a weird team that won 73 games last season despite trying to contend, and they do have the need for a corner outfielder like Harper if they want to try it again in 2019. According to OOTP, San Francisco would pay about $15 million to $20 million more over a seven-year deal than Harper’s other potential suitors, and they wouldn’t get much postseason success out of it. They are projected to average 85.5 wins per season over the first four years of Harper’s deal, finishing second in the NL West (and out of the playoffs) each year. They would also get classic inconsistent Bryce: 5.7 WAR in Year 1, followed by 2.2 and 2.9 WAR (both seasons riddled with injuries), then 4.4, and then 0.6 in a terrible 2023 season during which Harper would hit .209, with the Giants crashing to 74 wins.After six up-and-down seasons by the Bay, Harper would sign a four-year, $116.8 million deal with the Brewers. He is projected for a strong season on a playoff-bound Milwaukee team in 2025 but then just 2.1 WAR per year over the next two seasons before opting out early yet again to join … yes, the Yankees. During his inevitable run in pinstripes, Harper would boast an .821 OPS as his Yanks make (and lose) the ALCS in 2028, but he would put up negative WAR over the next two seasons. He would retire at age 38 after being released by New York (and briefly rejoining the Giants). Harper’s final JAWS score of 49.9 would put him right on the edge of the Hall of Fame relative to other right fielders.… Harper signs with the Cardinals?Frequency: 20 percent of simulationsAverage contract: Seven years for $151 millionSix-year team wins: 87.2 per seasonSix-year WAR: 4.9 per seasonBest playoff result: Loses World Series in 2027 and 2030This is one of the most successful universes either star free agent had in our OOTP simulations. In this world, the Cardinals would grab Harper for the bargain-bin price of $151 million, and he would stay with them for a total of 12 seasons thanks to another midcareer contract extension. St. Louis would be mostly competitive throughout Harper’s dozen seasons there, averaging 87 wins per year and making the playoffs nine times, including two pennant-winning runs. Harper is projected for 53.4 total WAR in a Cardinals uniform (which would actually rank him just below Ozzie Smith for fifth on the franchise’s all-time leaderboard), winning the 2023 NL MVP with a 1.033 OPS and 7.4 WAR. In Harper’s final season as a Cardinal at age 37, OOTP sees St. Louis losing the 2030 World Series to (Machado’s?) White Sox in a heartbreaking seventh game.After leaving St. Louis, Harper would sign a three-year, $62 million deal with the Mets, but a fractured knee would cost him 88 games in his first New York season, and he wouldn’t be the same player afterward, averaging just 1.1 WAR/year in 2032-33. Following an ineffective 51-game stint with the Giants in 2034, Harper would retire as a surefire Hall of Famer with a JAWS score of 69.2.… Harper signs somewhere else?Harper has been linked to so many teams, it’s tough to keep track sometimes. So we asked OOTP to look at the other teams its own AI saw Harper signing with (the Padres and Dodgers), plus the Phillies, White Sox and Harper’s erstwhile team, the Nationals. Of those, the Dodgers easily offer the greatest amount of team glory — in fact, they would basically become a dynasty with Bryce on board, winning the 2020, 2021, 2023 and 2024 World Series and losing it in 2025 (as Harper would put up 44.3 WAR during seven seasons in L.A.).3Just for good measure, Harper would return to Washington in this Dodgers simulation, after a four-season stint with the Mariners, and would also win the 2030 World Series with the Nats in his age-37 season. Individually, Harper would finish with 98.3 WAR in that universe, edging out his 93.2 WAR in the Cardinals simulation for the best of the options we looked at. The rest offer varying degrees of lesser success from both a team and personal perspective, with the Phillies, Nats and Padres projected to make the playoffs a few times on Harper’s first contract (he would re-up with the Padres and Nationals for the long-term in those simulations) and Harper accumulating just shy of 80 career WAR in each universe. read more

Ohio State womens volleyball team to take on two undefeated teams in

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Members of OSU womens volleyball team celebrate after a play during a game against Florida State on September 6 at St. John’s Arena. Credit: Ashley Roudebush / For The LanternThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team is looking to capture its second tournament win in a row this weekend as it heads to Brooklyn, New York, for the Blackbird Invitational.OSU (5-1) is set to take on host Long Island University Brooklyn (0-4) on Friday at 7 p.m. to kick off the tournament. The No. 15 Buckeyes are then scheduled to take on two currently undefeated teams on Saturday, playing Syracuse (5-0) at 10 a.m. and No. 13 Arizona (6-0) at 5 p.m.The Buckeyes are riding a five-match winning streak and are coming off a tournament win on their home floor at St. John Arena, defeating then-No. 14 Florida State twice and Northern Illinois once.Coach Geoff Carlston was happy with the way his team stayed steady and worked together, and said he hopes it carries over to this weekend.“I thought we really played well as a unit this weekend,” he said. “Everyone impacted our team and our wins. In that sense, I think we feel really good about the culture we’ve created.”Carlston said his team has confidence after sweeping the Sports Imports D.C. Koehl Classic tournament, but his players are trying to remain grounded as they prepare for conference play.“We really try to stay so in the moment because you’re going to have big wins and big losses in the Big Ten,” he said. “Then the next day, you have to be playing another top 25 team.”Sophomore outside hitter Luisa Schirmer echoed the sentiments of her coach when she described the team as confident but focused as it heads into another important set of games.“Two undefeated teams are coming into the tournament, so we’re going to have to play our best again,” Schirmer said. “We can’t let our confidence overcloud how hard we’re going to have to work.”Keys to victoryHeading into the Blackbird Invitational, senior outside hitter Katie Mitchell said the key will be the intensity of the back-row defenders.“I thought our back-row defenders did a great job of scrapping,” she said. “I mean, they picked up everything that you could possibly throw at them.”In the D.C. Koehl Classic, junior libero Valeria León had 58 digs en route to a second straight all-tournament performance, while sophomore defensive specialist Kalisha Goree added 24.Mitchell also said the presence of the team’s middle blockers was huge for the OSU offense last weekend and she hoped they continue their high level of play.“Having the middles as a constant presence makes the other teams worry about them a little bit more than they usually do, and that opens up our offense,” she said.Sandbothe earns more honorsOne of the middle blockers to whom Mitchell was referring is junior Taylor Sandbothe, who was named a Big Ten co-player of the week alongside sophomore middle blocker Haleigh Washington of Penn State.“She played at another level this weekend and that’s what I talked to her about,” Carlston said. “And it wasn’t just the game, it was her persona, her personality, how she played the game.”Sandbothe was also named the D.C. Koehl Classic tournament MVP after picking up 42 kills on a .521 attack percentage, along with 16 blocks and three aces.What’s next?OSU will wrap up its nonconference schedule by playing in the Golden Grizzlies Invitational in Rochester, Michigan, on Sept. 18 and 19. read more

Football Ohio State remains at No 9 in latest College Football Playoff

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Ohio State Billy Price prepares to snap the ball to J.T. Barrett in the first half in the game against Illinois on Nov. 18. Ohio State won 52-14. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorOhio State (9-2, 7-1 Big Ten) stood still at No. 9 in the College Football Playoff rankings after thumping Illinois (2-9, 0-8 Big Ten) 52-14 on Saturday.The other Big Ten teams in the rankings are No. 5 Wisconsin, No. 10 Penn State, No. 16 Michigan State and No. 22 Northwestern. Michigan dropped out of the rankings from No. 24 after losing to Wisconsin 24-10. The Buckeyes will play the Wolverines at noon Saturday.The Buckeyes and the Badgers will face off on Dec. 2 in the Big Ten Championship Game with Ohio State representing the East and Wisconsin the West.The top four in the rankings consists of No. 1 Alabama, No. 2 Miami (FL.), No. 3 Clemson and No. 4 Oklahoma. Wisconsin and No. 6 Auburn are the first two out. Here are the full rankings. Alabama Miami (FL.) Clemson Oklahoma Wisconsin Auburn Georgia Notre Dame Ohio State Penn State USC TCU Washington State Mississippi State Central Florida Michigan State Washington LSU Oklahoma State Memphis Stanford Northwestern Boise State South Carolina Virginia Tech read more

Womens Basketball Ohio State opens season against No 22 South Florida

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Ohio State redshirt junior forward Makayla Waterman (24) looks to pass to a teammate in the fourth quarter of the Buckeyes’ semifinal game against Rutgers on March 2 at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Ohio State beat Rutgers 82-57. Credit: Alyssia Graves | Assistant Sports DirectorThe Ohio State women’s basketball team starts its regular season with a matchup against No. 22 South Florida on Tuesday in the Schottenstein Center, the first of six preseason ranked Top 25 matchups. The Buckeyes, who come into the season unranked, have a lot to prove after losing over 90 percent of their scoring output from last year with the departures of guard Kelsey Mitchell, forward Stephanie Mavunga and guard Linnae Harper, among others. Finding a new reliable scoring threat will be one of many things the new-look Buckeyes hope to figure out as the season progresses, with Tuesday’s opener as the first official test of a fresh roster. Head coach Kevin McGuff acknowledges there are questions that need answers in regard to the new team, but said he sees it as an opportunity for more players to get involved to help the team win.“We’re still just kind of trying to gel and get things to come together, but we’re going to have to be a really balanced team and we don’t have necessarily that one player that can just go get points,” McGuff said. “We’re going to have to execute well and spread the ball around.” The Buckeyes were able to spread the ball around during their preseason win over IUP Sunday with a 72-50 victory that saw four separate players score double digits: freshman forward Dorka Juhasz, 14, redshirt senior guard Carly Santoro, 14, freshman guard Janai Crooms, 12 and freshman forward Aaliyah Patty, 12. A healthy dose of freshman scoring is a good sign for the young team still trying to find its identity. While Ohio State wasn’t entirely consistent all the way through, the young players made their mark on both sides of the ball, with two big steals and a block from Crooms in the second quarter that began to take the life out of IUP. There was also a mixture of older help with the scoring outbreak from Santoro, who hit three 3-pointers within three minutes in the third quarter to keep the momentum in favor of Ohio State. The most ideal situation, McGuff said, is to get all players contributing to the team and ready to make an impact for the best chance at winning, which he saw glimpses of against IUP.Getting another chance to breed chemistry will do the team some good as the season progresses. Santoro believes the team is beginning to work well together. “I think we’re gelling really well,” Santoro said. “We’re friends outside of basketball, and basketball we all work really well together. We all want the best for each other.” This theory will be put to the test against USF, which found itself making an early exit in the first round of the NCAA Tournament last season to an upset against No. 11 Buffalo. Shortly after the battle against USF, the Buckeyes will face Detroit Mercy Nov. 9 at home, followed by a trip to Storrs, Connecticut, to face off against t No. 2 UConn, which has gone to 11 straight Final Fours and has won six of them, on Nov. 11. The tests of the season begin heavy with two of the first three matchups against highly-ranked opponents, so the fresh-faced Buckeyes will have to learn fast and work together to show what they are made of. read more

Lariam gave my son depression and I would not take it myself

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first_imgA former head of the Army has admitted he would not take a controversial anti-malarial drug as he revealed his son had suffered severe depression while prescribed Lariam.Lord Dannatt said side effects of the drug could be “pretty catastrophic” and he apologised to troops who had taken it while he was Chief of the General Staff.He urged the Ministry of Defence to show “generosity” when reaching compensation settlements with hundreds of personnel alleged to have suffered mental health problems after being given the drug during deployments to malaria hotspots. Lord Dannatt Lord Dannatt also suggested the MoD was afraid of opening the “floodgates” to “very expensive” compensation claims if it admitted the drug had harmed troops.Philippa Tuckman, a military claims lawyer at Hilary Meredith, said thousands of personnel had been harmed.She said: “I hope we will hear that the MoD has finally accepted that Lariam should only be administered in very restricted cases, though it will have taken them far too long to get even to this point.“It is now time for the MoD to accept its past failings and to co-operate with the servicemen and women who have suffered and desperately need help and support to put their lives back together.”Ahmed Al-Nahhas, a lawyer representing veterans at Bolt Burdon Kemp, said: “Lord Dannatt’s apology is welcome and obviously stems from personal experience of the damaging effects of this drug on his immediate family.“Unfortunately, for many service personnel that apology will not be enough. Many continue to suffer with serious mental health conditions as a result of the MoD’s failures to safeguard their health.”An MoD spokeswoman said: “The vast majority of deployed personnel already receive alternatives to Lariam and, where it is used, it is only prescribed after an individual risk assessment.”But we have a duty to protect our personnel from malaria and, as the last defence committee report concluded, in some cases, Lariam will be the most effective way of doing that.”It continues to be recommended as safe by Public Health England and the World Health Organisation.”The drug’s manufacturers, Roche, told the BBC it “will continue to work with the Ministry of Defence to ensure that they have all the relevant information to ensure Lariam is prescribed appropriately”. MPs earlier this year criticised the Ministry of Defence for showing “lamentable weakness” in its duty to protect soldiers, sailors and airmen, by ignoring stringent precautions for handing it out.While Lariam is not the main anti-malarial drug used by the armed forces, at least 17,368 personnel were prescribed it at least once between the start of April 2007 and the end of March 2015, according to official MoD figures.Lord Dannatt, who was Chief of the General staff between 2006 and 2009, told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme his son’s experiences had put him off taking the drug. Because Bertie had that effect, whenever I’ve needed anti-malarial drugs, I’ve said, ‘I’ll take anything, but I’m not taking Lariam’,Lord Dannatt Lord Dannatt was head of the Army from 2006 to 2009Credit:David Moir/Reuters British Army officer (L) from the Integrated Military and Advisory Training Team (IMATT) training a new Sierra Leone recruit (R) at Benguema outside Freetown, Sierra Leone 25 May 2007 British personnel have regularly been given the drug to deploy to malaria regions such as Sierra LeoneCredit:Tugela Ridley/EPA Lawyers are representing hundreds of former personnel who claim they were wrongly given the drug because they were not given individual risk assessments or warned of side effects.Lord Dannatt said he was “quite content to say sorry” to those troops who had taken Lariam while he was head of the Army.The focus on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, which were not malarial areas, meant that evaluating the drug had “slipped off the mainstream radar” and been put on the “backburner”, he suggested. Bertie Dannatt became ill after taking two doses of Lariam to visit Africa as a civilian in the late 1990s.Bertie was not in the Armed Forces at the time but had been prescribed the drug by his father’s Army doctor.Lord Dannatt said if his son had been left untreated “who knows where it would have gone”.He said: “He became extremely depressed, not the person that he would normally be, normally a very bubbly personable individual.“He got very withdrawn and we got very worried about him.”He went on: “Because Bertie had that effect, whenever I’ve needed anti-malarial drugs, I’ve said, ‘I’ll take anything, but I’m not taking Lariam’,” 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.last_img read more

Christopher Marlowe given credit as Shakespeare collaborator

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first_imgHe has long been classed as one of William Shakespeare’s major rivals and influences, but scholars now believe Christopher Marlowe’s links with the Bard run even deeper.The Elizabethan playwright is to be given credit as a co-writer of the Henry VI plays in a new Oxford University Press edition of Shakespeare’s work.Marlowe, who is famed for penning Doctor Faustus, was suspected to have been involved in writing the three parts of Henry VI as early as the 18th century. Shakespeare  However until now he has not received joint credit for the plays in an edition of Shakespeare’s collected works.The forthcoming edition of the New Oxford Shakespeare reflects research by academics using modern computerised tools, which suggest that Shakespeare worked alongside other writers more often than previously thought.The research, by 23 scholars, identified 17 of 44 Shakespeare plays as being co-written by other authors. In contrast, in 1986 the collected works suggested eight of 39 plays were collaborative. The New Oxford Shakespeare is published 27 October, £295 for full set. https://t.co/mGFPZ3ePgm Via @OUPAcademic pic.twitter.com/LQ4OtjMeMZ— Shakespeare Magazine (@UKShakespeare) July 19, 2016 The four volumes of the New Oxford Shakespeare will be published between the the end of October and December. center_img Shakespeare shares credit for his work with other writers in the new edition 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. Dr Gary Taylor, one of the edition’s general editors, said that in the 1980s the suggestion that Shakespeare partnered with other writers prompted outrage, but now there is “empirical evidence” for collaboration.“We have been able to verify Marlowe’s presence in those three plays strongly and clearly enough,” he told the Guardian.“We can now be confident that they didn’t just influence each other, but they worked with each other. Rivals sometimes collaborate.”last_img read more

Magistrate disciplined after Facebook comments on case he oversaw

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first_imgA magistrate has been reprimanded after posting a Facebook message about a court case he had overseen.David King, who sits in courts in Portsmouth, south-east Hampshire, was investigated by a watchdog after a complaint.A Judicial Conduct Investigations Office spokesman said judicial heads had concluded that Mr King’s behaviour “fell below the standard expected of a magistrate”.The spokesman said Mr King had been issued with a reprimand.Detail has emerged in a statement posted on the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office website.The statement gave no indication what Mr King’s message had 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.last_img

Hedge fund husband told disabled wife to leave her crutches behind to

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first_imgAlicia confided in her GP on July 23 last year and Mitchinson was arrested and questioned. “He said she was intoxicated during the theatre outing and she threw the glass at him and he had to restrain her.”Miss Paul told the jury: “He sought to control her whole life, her work, her sleep pattern her social life. She was, in effect, her husband’s prisoner.”Mitchinson, of Holmdale Road, West Hampstead has pleaded not guilty to one count of controlling or coercive behaviour between January 1 and July 23 2016.He also denies three counts of assaulting Ms Vidler at their home address on dates between January 10 and July 16 2016.He said the demise of Castilium prompted Alicia’s police complaint, which is “fabricated and exaggerated.”The trial continues. Guy Mitchinson She told the trial: “He’d tell me before business meetings: ‘You’re going to have to get through this. You’re probably going to be crippled for life so you have to make this work.'”Guy did not like me being seen with crutches or a walking stick and I’d leave them at reception. Flying makes it much worse, it’s very painful on the plane.”The couple married in July, 2014, but Alicia said there were problems from the start.”He hated me seeing my friends,” she said, “he started asking for the passwords to every electronic device I had.””It terrified me, it gave me no privacy. I felt I was being monitored, my personal thoughts are on them, my bank account details.”I couldn’t get away from him, I couldn’t think straight. It scared me in the end and made me feel incredibly stressed.” Guy MitchinsonCredit:Tony Palmer Caroline Paul, prosecuting, told the jury: “This trial is about a man systematically bullying his wife in order to control her and he became more controlling and violent between January and July, last year.”His wife became his virtual prisoner and he began to interfere with her medical care, forcing her into taking a course of medication when the the side effects were severe.”Ms Vidler was an equity derivatives trader with Deutsche Bank in Sydney before moving to the UK, where she studied for a PhD in mathematics at Imperial College.She was privately-educated at Sydney’s Ascham school and co-founded Mayfair’s Castilium Capital with her husband in January 2012.Mitchinson claims her allegations are invented and simply a way of getting out of the marriage and failing business partnership.However, recalling one row, Ms Vidler told he court: “He smashed a glass on my head and it smashed everywhere, it was the crown of my head and there was glass in my hair and I could feel blood on my head.”I made a run for it and got the front door open and saw the beautiful blue sky and houses, but he got me by the hand and swung me back into the house.”I spent the next five hours trying to get past him, that’s what I was fixated on,” she added. “He said: ‘I’ll not let you do this to our marriage.'”He said: ‘No one is coming to rescue you.’ I begged twenty or thirty times to go to hospital and thought about climbing out the bathroom window, but there is an eighteen foot drop.” A hedge fund boss told his disabled wife to leave her crutches behind to stop them losing clients, a court heard has heard, as he is accused of systematic abuse.Former Deutsche Bank derivatives expert Guy Mitchinson, 38, ran Castilium Capital with wife Alicia Vidler, an ex-Merrill Lynch trader, who says she was a prisoner of her violent husband.The 37-year-old claimed her husband, who denies “systematically bullying” his wife at their Knightsbridge home, smashed a glass over her head during a row.The hedge fund manager ignored his wife’s painful arthritic condition as she rested at their £3.4m home, beating her with a pillow as she rolled herself into a ball, Isleworth Crown Court heard. 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.last_img read more

Meltdown on A2 as lorry laden with chocolate bursts into flames

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first_imgFirefighters managed to extinguish the blaze, which was concentrated in the lorry’s cab, and efforts were being made to move the HGV, fire officials said.Highways England said the lorry’s load had melted on to the carriageway and they urged drivers to allow extra time for their journeys.A Kent Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said there were no reports of injuries and the cause of the fire was unknown. Avoid the #A2 north bound there has been a lorry fire and massive tailbacks from greenhithe to Medway bridge! pic.twitter.com/PXSt70nGyH— E&M Waste Clearance (@EMWasteClearanc) July 20, 2017 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.center_img Traffic is choc-a-block on the A2 this morning after a lorry believed to be laden with chocolate bars went up in flames.Three out of the four lanes on the London-bound A2 near Bluewater shopping centre in Kent were closed on Thursday morning while fire crews made the scene safe.last_img read more

Men should say menopause three times a day to show solidarity with

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In February menopause cafes were launched as a meeting once every month giving colleagues a place to meet in an informal, social setting to allow male and female colleagues to discuss the menopause over a drink.Dr Davies said the cafes allow women and men to feel more confident about discussing the menopause.She said: “People share tips on how they are managing menopause symptoms at work and at home.”A recent share I really liked was to have a menopause book on the work desk. This is a place to write lists and say how her menopause was today.”She wrote things herself but also encouraged her work colleagues to do the same. This has really helped her not to forget things – that can happen – if you experience intermittent forgetfulness, or what we call menopause brain fog.” Male academics should say the word ‘menopause’ at least three times a day in solidarity with their female colleagues, according to a fellow scholar. Staff at the University of Leicester are being encouraged to open up and talk about the taboo subject in a bid to normalise conversation on the topic.Dr Andrea Davies, from the university’s School of Business, has argued that all staff should be able to talk about menopause openly and without embarrassment and that saying the word three times a day would help.In a bid to open up the conversation she has organised the monthly Leicester Menopause Café, where male and female colleagues are encouraged to come together and chat about the middle-aged phenomena.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––”We have been arguing to avoid any closeted words or acronyms and just say menopause – preferably three times a day to make it unremarkable”, she said.“We set out that menopause should not be a women’s only issue.” Dr Davies has also launched a menopause roadshow at the university and says workplaces need to become more menopause-friendly.Since trying to promote the conversation on menopause Dr Davies said male colleagues were “keen to know more to support their family and female colleagues.” There are around 4.3 million working women aged 50 or over – the biggest increase in employment rates since 1994.The menopause occurs at the age of 51 years on average, so many women now undergo the change at work.On average, most symptoms last about four years from the last period.However, about one in every 10 women experiences them for up to 12 years.A report by the Government Equalities Office released in 2017 recommended that employers provide desk fans to help menopausal women manage their symptoms.They should also provide cold water fountains, places to rest, special absence policies and ensure uniforms are made from non-synthetic materials. In the workplace symptoms which can be experienced include headaches, hot flushes, depression and excessive tiredness. 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. She added: “Confidence to talk about menopause is growing. We are removing the taboo – menopause is visible and in the everyday.”Last year, the university became the first in the UK to introduce a menopause policy.Similar schemes have since been rolled out at the University of Manchester, Severn Trent Water and Nottinghamshire Police, as employers look to support older female colleagues. read more

BBC develops system to turn household objects like fridges into surround sound

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BBC programmes could be revolutionised by a new pilot project to turn everyday devices like smartphones and iPads into an instant surround sound systems at home. The corporation’s research and development arm is working on new technology which will give a similar effect to being at the cinema or a live concert.It could allow horror movie viewers to hear the sound of footsteps creeping up behind them, or nature lovers experience the sound of an animal running past on a documentary. Or it could even switch a programme to less scary sounds if a child is in the room. Although surround sound systems already exist for television, they are expensive and the BBC wanted to see if it was possible to mimic the effect using speakers already in household objects.The system could tap into audio enabled fridges, or electronic assistants like Alexa. It could even make lightbulbs flicker to simulate a storm. 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. “I think some of the soundscapes that you get on Doctor Who would lend itself well. “We have each character coming from a different speaker so it sounds more like a real conversation in a room, you can imagine that for a panel show or a comedy.”The project is partly funded by the government’s research council and is a joint venture with the University of Surrey.Dr Philip Jackson of Surrey said it could also improve traditional audio dramas like The Archers.“Some of the things we are doing is with ambient sounds so if you happen to be out in the fields, or inside the dairy of the pub, you can help to create that atmosphere and you have the option to put spot effects, like the bleat of a sheep, or birds. “Sound has the power to draw you inside a story, to envelope you and to move you. “Without telling you to buy a load of new loudspeakers or how you should set out your living room, we’ve combined new audio technologies to make it easier for you to have more immersive experience at home.”The new technology can be trialled at https://www.bbc.co.uk/taster/pilots/vostok The technology could work well with Doctor Who, the BBC said Credit:Sophie Mutevelian/PA Wire Dr Jon Francombe, of the BBC’s R&D department said: “This project is about giving people excellent sound experiences that are immersive [and] transportive in their living rooms.“If you look in most people’s living rooms there are lots of devices with loudspeakers, your telly has two built in, your mobile phone, your tablet, maybe there is a smart speaker in the corner, and games consoles and they are likely to be connected to the internet which means we can get a signal to them. “So we have spent a couple of years thinking about how can we harness the devices in the living room so we can use them to produce something better than the telly.“We’re adding to the immersive experience which you can’t get with just a pair or loud speakers in front of you.”Under the new scheme, viewers are able to pair their smartphone or tablet to a programme using a QR code and the technology then tells them where to place the device.The researchers say it will go one stage further than traditional surround sound by adding new noises or even commentary which would not be on the original programme. Users would also no longer need to be sitting directly in arc of speakers to get the best effect. “Wind and weather noises could be more surrounding, then we also use it for spot effects that we can position in the room and extra content,” added Dr Francombe. The first audio drama using the new technology – called The Vostok-K Incident – was launched at the British Science Festival which can be trialled on the BBC’s website using up to 20 devices at a time. If successful, the BBC wants to create new programmes using the technology and even retrofit old dramas. Jodie Whittaker as The Doctor (centre), Bradley Walsh as Graham (second right) and Mandip Gill as Yaz (first right) read more

Man nicknamed Snake let 4ft crocodile roam free in rented Essex house

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Essex Police said the reptiles included cobras, copperheads, pythons and a Madagascar giant hognose.Seven of the snakes died and had been left to decompose, with the survivors taken into the care of the RSPCA.During police interview Thompson claimed the animals were his pets and he had no intention of selling them but he admitted neglecting them.An Essex Police spokesman said: “Thompson kept wild animals in appalling conditions, ultimately causing 17 to die.”Not only did he keep them without a licence but showed no care for their well-being or their survival.”Thompson, of King Edward Road, Laindon, Essex, was jailed for four months and was fined £115 in his absence. He was arrested at an address in Napier Close, Basildon and on the same day officers found a menagerie of exotic animals at a house he rented in Burdett Avenue in Westcliff.The 4ft caiman was found at the property, along with 23 snakes and fat-tailed scorpion had no food, water or heat source and the snakes were in poorly-ventilated plastic boxes. 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. Lee ThompsonCredit:Essex Live/BPM Media A man who let a 4ft crocodile roam roam around the bedroom of a rented house in Essex has been jailed for a string of animal offences. Lee Thompson, 36, who is known as “Snake” because of a tattoo on his neck which includes the word “snake”, also kept 23 snakes in “appalling” conditions as well a host of other exotic animals. He was convicted at Basildon Magistrates’ Court in August of two counts of breaching a ban on keeping a dangerous wild animal, two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal and two counts of keeping a dangerous wild animal without a licence.Police arrested him in Wallingford, Oxfordshire, on September 11 and he was sentenced at Basildon Crown Court last Wednesday, Essex Police said.The force said Thompson had been on their radar since 2015 when they found 45 exotic animals, including spiders, a lizard and a snapping turtle, at a unit he rented in Basildon.Some of the animals, which had been left without water, food and heat, died, and the survivors were taken into the care of the RSPCA and specially trained handlers.Efforts to find Thompson, who was not at the unit at the time, were unsuccessful and he remained on the run until January 2018. Lee Thompson read more

Bouncy castles and inflatables should be banned after slide injured eight children

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Bouncy castles and inflatables should be banned in the wake of a slide collapse that injured eight children, a senior MP has said.Robert Halfon, a former minister and Conservative MP for Harlow, has called on the government to issue a temporary ban until regulations can be updated.His intervention comes after eight children fell from an inflatable slide at a fireworks display in Woking Park in Surrey on Saturday evening.Seven have since been discharged from hospital but one remained on Sunday for observation. However, police said the child’s injures were “not believed to be significant”.Mr Halfon’s intervention comes after a series of tragedies involving inflatable rides, raising questions over their safety.Earlier this year a three-year-old girl died after being thrown from an inflatable trampoline in Norfolk, and in 2016 a seven-year-old girl died after a bouncy castle broke free in high winds in Harlow.Mr Halfon told BBC 5Live: “I reiterate my urge to the government that they should have a temporary ban on inflatables and bouncy castles in public places until all the regulations we know have been updated. Robert Halfon, a former minister and Conservative MP for Harlow 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. “Twenty injures since 2011, we’ve had two tragic deaths – the time for just looking at it is over. “The government have got to have possibly a temporary ban on these things until we know for sure that they’re safe and no parent has to ever worry again”.The park was evacuated shortly after the incident on Saturday and a major incident declared by Surrey police.A helicopter and several ambulances attended that evening and on Sunday the funfair remained under police cordon as the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) began its investigation.One witness said he was concerned earlier that evening when he saw dozens of children playing on the “flimsy” slide at once.Andy Datson, 23, said he saw up to 40 children playing on the slide, which he estimated was about 30ft tall at its highest point.”We had been walking past the slide earlier in the night and said it looked unsafe. It looked pretty flimsy to say the least,” he said.”There were far too many kids on it. It didn’t look like it could hold that many people.” Just one child remains in hospitalCredit:Andrew Matthews/PA Robert Halfon, a former minister and Conservative MP for HarlowCredit:Julian Simmonds Just one child remains in hospital David Munro, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey, said the incident “could have been so much worse” and that inflatable experts would be attending the scene.He said: “We will not just be looking at the incident itself, but also the events leading up to it. A HSE spokesman said: “HSE is aware of the incident and inspectors are attending the site to support the police.”   “Was it down to the ride safety precautions or too many people on the ride?”Michael Holden, of Woking District Rotary Club, who organised the event, estimated around 5,000 people were in the park when it happened.He said: “We don’t still know yet what exactly happened but eight children appear to have come off near the top of the slide and landed on the floor alongside it.”We have used this funfair operator for a number of years. We have never had any problems before. [The operator] is as upset as we are.””We are very shocked and distressed by the whole thing.”Joe Mercer, general secretary of the Showmen’s Guild, told the BBC: “This slide has up-to-date test certificates and insurance documents, these have been provided to police. “Our members are fully co-operating with the authorities; no arrests have been made.”In a statement issued on Sunday, Surrey police said: “Following last night’s evacuation of Woking Park after children fell from an inflatable slide, we are pleased to update that seven of the eight victims were discharged overnight.“The eighth victim was kept in overnight for observations, but his injuries are not thought to be significant.“The investigation will now sit with the Health and Safety Executive.” read more

GP convicted of running transgender clinic for children without licence

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Following a “snowballing” of interest on the transgender treatment, she decided to open a new website GenderGP.com.Mr Davies said: “Here was a doctor who was providing care, information and advice that was very much needed. But her business was not registered.”It was never anticipated by Webberley that the registration of the company would be in any way controversial.”She didn’t appreciate that the company needed registration until it was pointed out to her.”Webberley always followed the international guidelines for transgender care, but what she didn’t do was to state how many patients there were, how old they were and what treatment was included.”It is regrettable that she didn’t provide that information. She didn’t provide it due to confidentiality and that was misplaced.”She was a very caring practitioner who never developed the company for financial gain. She was only motivated by the care of her patients.”Webberley was convicted of illegally providing healthcare services after the court ruled that she and her company broke the Care Standards Act.District Judge Neil Thomas ordered her to pay a £12,000 fine as well as a £2,000 fine issued to her GenderGP busness.Dr Webberley was also told to pay £11,307 costs. Dr Helen Webberley outside Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates court Judge Thomas said: “In this case there seems to be a clear refusal to follow the law and that is a significant aggravating factor.”Webberley was a doctor of considerable experience.”The court has to regard this offence as serious.”Dr Kate Chamberlain, HIW chief executive, welcomed the guilty verdict.She said: “Unregistered healthcare services pose a risk to patient safety as they are not subject to the same level of scrutiny as registered services.”Webberley said in a statement that she was “stunned” and “devastated” by the court’s decision.She said: “The needs of this minority group of people must be recognised. We as a country can do better. The NHS waiting time of up to four years for a first appointment is unconstitutional.“Better interim care options must be provided and I urge regulators to take a more collaborative approach.” 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. Dr Helen Webberley outside Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates courtCredit:WALES NEWS SERVICE Russell Davies, defending, said she continued to run the company after being ordered to cease her practice because she did not want to risk suddenly stopping treatments.He said: “Due to the number of patients under her care she was concerned that the cessation of the website would be harmful.”The continuation was never because of financial greed.”Webberley set up the company in 2014 after working as a GP, initially launching MyWebDoc.com. A GP has been convicted of running an illegal transgender clinic, providing hormones to children as young as 12 despite being refused a licence by the NHS regulator.Dr Helen Webberley, 49, ran the clinic from her home, treating children who wanted to change sex, charging between £75 and £150 an hour.She also provided online advice, calling herself the Gender GP, prescribing children and teenagers who had been denied treatment on the NHS.Webberley’s clinic was last year refused a license to operate by watchdog Healthcare Inspectorate Wales (HIW), Merthyr Tydfil Magistrates Court heard.But her firm continued to operate between March 2017 and February 2018.Webberley, from Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, insisted she was innocent and warned that closing down her service meant that patients could come to harm. read more

Deaths of up to 250 patients reviewed at toxic heart unit

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The deaths of up to 250 patients who died following heart surgery at an NHS hospital are to be reviewed.All the patients underwent surgery at St George’s Hospital in Tooting, south London, between April 2013 and September 2018.The review, commissioned by NHS Improvement, comes after the hospital suspended complex heart surgery last year to improve services.A leaked report previously suggested that poor relationships at the cardiac unit contributed to a higher mortality rate.The trust said families of cardiac surgery patients who died during the review period will be contacted if the panel identifies “any significant concerns about their care”.Jacqueline Totterdell, chief executive at St George’s, said: “It is absolutely essential that patients and their families have full confidence in the care our cardiac surgery team provide – and this review of past deaths will be a key part of that process.”The review only applies to cardiac surgery at St George’s, and does not include other associated specialities – for example, cardiology.The panel will examine the safety and quality of care that patients who died during or after cardiac surgery at St George’s received during the review period.They will do this by reviewing the medical records of deceased cardiac surgery patients, as well as any investigations conducted by the Trust at the time of the patients’ deaths. The panel is likely to review between 200-250 deaths as part of this process, which will take place between six and 12 months to complete.The period between April 2013 and March 2017 has been identified as a time when the trust had a statistically higher mortality rate compared with the other 31 cardiac surgery centres in the UK.The panel will also review deaths between April 2017 and 1 September 2018, when improvements were being made.Last summer a leaked report  warned that a “toxic” feud between two rival camps at the unit left staff feeling a high death rate was inevitable.St George’s Hospital heart unit was consumed by a “dark force” and patients were put at risk, the investigation concluded. The damning review was written by former NHS England deputy medical director Mike Bewick in response to higher mortality rates at the hospital.He found the south London facility had a cardiac surgery death rate of 3.7 per cent – above the national 2 per cent average, reports said.Internal scrutiny was said to be “inadequate” and the department was riven between “two camps” exhibiting “tribal-like activity”.Professor Bewick’s review was quoted as saying: “Some felt that there was a persistent toxic atmosphere and stated that there was a ‘dark force’ in the unit.” 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. Conversations with 39 members of staff revealed they were shocked by the death rate, but “most felt that poor performance was inevitable due to the pervading atmosphere”.The independent reviewer examined “disturbing and often difficult information”, concluding an “existential threat” was posed to the unit because staff and patients would go elsewhere if problems persisted. read more

Over 300000 toddlers have never been read a nursery rhyme by their

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Over 300,000 toddlers have never been read a nursery rhyme by their parents, a Government survey suggests.Eight per cent of children aged under five in England have never learnt songs, poems or nursery rhymes, according to a Department for Education (DfE) poll of 2,685 mothers and fathers.  Meanwhile, 12 per cent of youngsters in the same age group have never learnt numbers or how to count and 14 per cent – 574,928 children – have never learnt the alphabet or how to recognise words.Ministers will launch a public information campaign later this year urging parents to “Chat, Play, Read” with their children before they start school.The Education Secretary has said that children being sent to school unable to speak in sentences is a “persistent scandal” and that parents failing to teach their children how to talk is the “last taboo” in education.  More than a quarter of four-and-five-year-olds lack the early communication and literacy skills expected by the end of reception year.The ‘expected level’ includes a child having the words and understanding to talk about events that have happened or are going to happen in the future.A separate study shows that children with poor vocabulary at age five are more than twice as likely to be unemployed at age 34 as children with good vocabulary.The head of Ofsted has previously warned that more and more children are starting school without being able to communicate properly or even use the toilet. Amanda Spielman described how some “lucky” children are given bedtime stories or taught the alphabet by their families, while others are not so fortunate.She has previously urged nursery staff to spend time teaching pre-school children new language skills – whether through songs, nursery rhymes or “time-honoured classics” such as Hans Christian Andersen or Dr Seuss.Earlier this year, the DfE announced that Clarks employees will be trained to speak to children as part of a drive to improve early language skills. Staff at the shoe shop will be taught to strike up conversation with toddlers while they try on shoes, so they can practise talking and responding to questions.Training will take place over the summer so that Clarks staff are able to talk to children who are bought to the shop by their parents to buy school shoes ahead of the new academic year. 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. read more

Police watchdog investigates officers over claims of racism misogyny steroid abuse and

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The Met has said it takes the allegations seriously and is cooperating fully with the IOPC investigation An investigation that was launched into claims that a police officer had sex with a member of the public at a police station has now widened and is looking allegations of bullying, violence, racism, misogyny and the illegal use of steroids among officers.The police watchdog began an inquiry last year following claims of inappropriate behaviour by an officer based at Charing Cross Police Station in central London.The officer had allegedly had sex with a vulnerable member of the public in the station in February 2016.But the incident only came to light when text messages were discovered during an internal Scotland Yard probe into another matter.The Independent Office for Police Conduct was called in and also began examining whether some of the officer’s colleagues had been aware of the incident at the time but had failed to report it.However the investigation has been dramatically expanded amid claims of a string of further serious and wide ranging allegations.These include bullying, inappropriate behaviour towards other officers, violence towards women, taking advantage of vulnerable people and the use of controlled substances including steroids. Eight police constables and two police sergeants who served with a unit based in central London are under investigation and some of the officers have undergone drug testing due to the allegations about steroid use.IOPC Regional Director, Sal Naseem said: “These are very serious allegations and it is vital for public confidence that these are independently investigated.We are committed to using our enforcement powers to root out officers whose conduct undermines the public’s confidence in policing and who should not be wearing the uniform.”There is no indication this is part of any wider teams within the station but our overarching report will consider the wider culture and team.“We would also like to hear from other officers at Charing Cross station, or the wider public, who may be able to provide valuable information to our investigation.”A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “The MPS takes all allegations of wrong-doing extremely seriously and is fully cooperating with the IOPC investigation.” Investigators from the IOPC are also looking at claims that officers used racist, misogynistic and discriminatory language and perverting the course of justice by deleting messages that were relevant to the criminal investigation. 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 Met has said it takes the allegations seriously and is cooperating fully with the IOPC investigation read more

Legal luminaries dub charges against Singh Brassington unconstitutional

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Senior Counsel and former Speaker of the National Assembly Ralph Ramkarran, in his weekly column, expounded that the charges against former Finance Minister Ashni Singh and former National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) Executive Director Winston Brassington may be unconstitutional on the basis that they are not “public officers” in accordance with the Constitution.Former Speaker of the National Assembly, Ralph Ramkarran, SCSingh and Brassington have been jointly charged by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) on three charges, using a UK common law application: “Misconduct in Public Office: Contrary to the Common Law.”According to Ramkarran, “Questions have arisen as to who is a public officer. In England, which does not have a written constitution, or apparently any applicable statutory definition, case law developed. In R v Whittaker (1914), the court defined a “public office holder” as “an officer who discharges any duty in the discharge of which the public are interested, more clearly if he is paid out of a fund provided by the public.” More recently, in R v Dytham (1979), Chief Justice Lord Widgery referred to a public officer as one “who has an obligation to perform a duty”.Ramkarran referred to the Guyana Constitution by stating that in Guyana, however, the Constitution defines a “public officer” as “the holder of a public office”. A “public office” is defined as “an office of emolument in the public service.” And the public service excludes “the Office of the President, [and] Minister.….” and it also excludes “the office of a member of any board, committee or other similar body (whether incorporate or not) established by any law in force in Guyana.”Various lawyers have also recently outlined that using the definitions of “public officer”, “public office,” and “public service” as defined in Article 232 of the Guyana’s Constitution would exclude both Singh and Brassington, from the charges of “Misconduct in Public Office: Contrary to the Common Law.”Further buttressing their arguments, legal scholars point to a 2006 Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) case (“Griffith vs [Guyana Revenue Authority] GRA, AG”), where the Court found that while the GRA was a “public authority”, its employees were not and cannot be “public officers and employees” based on the [Guyana] Constitution.Left: former former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) Winston Brassington and former Finance Minister Dr Ashni SinghRamkarran, in his column said, “While the offence can be traced back to the 13th century, a definition, given by Chief Justice Lord Mansfield in the 1783 case of R v Rembridge emphasised its importance: “…. first that a man accepting an office of trust concerning the public, especially if attended with profit, is answerable criminally to the King for misbehaviour in his office; …. Secondly, where there is a breach of trust, fraud or imposition in a matter concerning the public, though as between individuals it would be actionable, yet as between the King and the subject it is indictable. That such should be the rule is essential to the existence of the country.”Over the centuries, the crime was characterised by vagueness. Fast forwarding to the 21st century, in 2003 in the case of Attorney General’s Reference (No. 3 of 2003), each defendant was charged with “misconducting himself whilst serving as a police officer by wilfully failing to take reasonable and proper care of [A], an arrested person in police custody”.“Seeking no doubt to modernise the definition of the offence, the Attorney General sought the opinion of the court on the following questions: *What are the ingredients of the common law offence of misconduct in public office? *In particular, is it necessary in proceedings for an offence of misconduct in public office for the prosecution to prove bad faith, and if so, what does ‘bad faith’ mean? The court responded that the offence is committed when: (1) a public officer, acting as such, (2) wilfully neglects to perform his duty and/or wilfully misconducts himself, (3) to such a degree as to amount to an abuse of the public’s trust in the office holder, (4) without reasonable excuse or justification. It was made clear that it is an offence defined more by conduct than by results. This definition of “public trust” remained at large,” Ramkarran noted.He continued: “In 2008, Christopher Galley, a civil servant in the Home Office, was arrested for misconduct in public office for allegedly passing confidential and restricted documents to Damien Green. Green was arrested on suspicion of conspiring to commit, and being an accessory to, the alleged offence by Galley.“The [Director of Public Prosecutions] DPP decided not to prosecute because, whilst there was damage to the Home Office’s arrangements for handling such documents, there needed to be additional damage, such as harm to national security, and in the absence of such evidence, there were no realistic prospects of conviction. The DPP’s decision highlighted the departure in practical terms, from the notion that the conduct, not the results, define the offence. The DPP’s decision emphasised that in prosecutorial decision-making, the results of the impugned acts are a critical element in determining whether a conviction is likely. And if it is not, the State’s resources should not be wastefully expended in vainly pursuing a conviction. Although “public trust” was not an explicit issue, an understanding of it, in the sense of harming the public, was taking shape in legal circles.”Moreover, he reminded that “in the more recent case of R v W (2010), the Court of Appeal of England broadened and expanded the definition of the offence, exacerbating the existing confusion. Included were: frauds and deceits (in office); wilful excesses of official authority (malfeasance); the international infliction of bodily harm, imprisonment or other injury upon a person (oppression). Notwithstanding this decision, the House of Lords in R v Rimmington, R v Goldstein (2005) has suggested that the charge of misconduct in public office should be imposed only where there is no statutory offence, but where the behaviour should nevertheless be considered as criminal”.Opposition Leader and former President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo had said that all three charges against Singh and Brassington are ‘frivolous’ and all three matters were approved by the Cabinet.In concluding on the charges, a legal scholar has posited that this is “an open and shut case”. Neither Singh nor Brassington are “public officers” and as such. the law under which they are charged (based on both the Constitution and legal precedents all the way to the CCJ) cannot be applied to them.Even without this point, the legal luminary posited that, both Brassington and Singh can strongly argue that any action related to the charges is excused or justified, having obtained Board and Cabinet approvals for each of the transactions – strong evidence of oversight, supervision, and authority to act.On the other elements of the offence, it was outlined that the DPP would have difficulty showing that the actions, that are almost a decade old, “amount to an abuse of the public trust”, or “reflect one who wilfully neglects to perform his duty.” Lack of a valuation, particularly when compared with a public tender and lacking any basis in law, can hardly be criminal, particularly when there is Cabinet authority and approval, for each transaction.The DPP is yet to respond to a written request by one of the defence lawyers, Anil Nandlall, to review the charges against Singh and Brassington. Yet, similar charges instituted by the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) against five sitting Ministers, on the other hand, have been thrown out by the DPP. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedHigh Court grants stay halting Magistrates’ Court from hearing charges against Singh, BrassingtonMay 21, 2018In “Court”UPDATE: High Court to rule soon on stay of ‘misconduct’ charges against Singh, BrassingtonMay 17, 2018In “Court”Singh, Brassington appear in court, granted bailMay 8, 2018In “Court” read more

Codelco and Rio look for better technologies to mine and refine copper

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first_imgRio Tinto and Codelco have entered into the Río de Cobre (River of Copper) technology alliance agreement.  This new alliance allows both companies to jointly pursue next generation copper mining and processing technology development.  The aim is to deliver safer, more energy efficient and lower cost of production from both current and next generation open-pit and deep underground mines whilst operating with a lower a overall environmental impact.Governed by an independent chair and vice chair, Río de Cobre will pursue step change technology development in the areas of surface mining, underground mining and copper mineral recovery. Rio Tinto is already a world leader in automated open-pit mining with its work in the Pilbara of Western Australia (to be examined in more detail in IM, January 2010. Both companies are leaders in block caving and the automation of those underground operations.Tom Albanese, Rio Tinto’s chief executive said, “I am delighted that we have entered into the Río de Cobre alliance with Codelco.  Combining the Rio Tinto Mine of the FutureTM effort with the industry renowned copper technology expertise of Codelco positions both of our companies to best confront the challenges posed by the increasing demand for copper.”Codelco chief executive Jose Pablo Arellano said, “Today, Codelco as leader of the copper mining industry is extremely pleased to be signing the Rio de Cobre Alliance with Rio Tinto. This initiative will make possible a major technological breakthrough collaboration between the worlds largest innovators in the mining industry, starting the effort to meet the challenges in underground mine where we have the largest operation projects in the copper industry.”last_img read more