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Village In Shock Over 'Cannibal' Death Claim

Written By andika jamanta on Jumat, 07 November 2014 | 18.25

A woman murdered in a South Wales village was found with substantial facial injuries, sources have said, after unconfirmed reports described it as a cannibalistic attack.

The 22-year-old died from her injuries at a bed and breakfast in Argoed, in the Valleys, in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Police fired a 50,000 volt Taser at her attacker to stop him and 34-year-old man Matthew Williams was restrained and arrested.

He later died in custody.

Gwent Police said they were not looking for any other suspects in the murder investigation.

The victim has not yet been named and officers have refused to comment on her injuries or reports they were in a relationship.

The attack happened at around 1.30am at the Sirhowy Arms Hotel, used by Caerphilly Council to house homeless people while they wait for permanent accommodation.

Neighbour Susan Gibbs told Sky News: "We have had a lot of problems up there.

"Every other week, well every other day sometimes, there are police up there." 

Leon Gardiner, deputy mayor of the village, 20 miles north of Cardiff, said: "This has hit the community for six."

He told Sky News: "This is the sort of thing you don't ever expect... We've just got to live with it and hope that the hurt goes away - but it will take a long time."

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has started its own probe into the suspect's death.

A Gwent Police statement confirmed "a Taser was discharged and a 34-year-old local man was arrested".

It added: "Whilst under arrest, the man became unresponsive. Officers and paramedics administered first aid but he was also pronounced dead at the scene."

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Labour Pair Deny Secret Pact Over Miliband

Two of the most senior members of Ed Miliband's shadow cabinet have strenuously denied making a secret pact in the event of the Labour leader stepping down.

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper and shadow health secretary Andy Burnham were reported by The Times to have struck a "non-aggression pact".

The newspaper quoted one figure as saying: "It's about presenting a joint offer to make a contest unnecessary."

But Ms Cooper's spokesman said there was "no foundation whatsoever" to the suggestion.

He said: "The spreading of lies like this only damages the Labour Party and should be seen as exactly what it is - complete and utter garbage. Yvette, the shadow cabinet and the party are united behind Ed's leadership."

Video: Ed Miliband's Gaffes

The shadow health secretary's spokesman insisted there were "no discussions of this kind", adding: "The party is united behind Ed's leadership and we are confident he will become the next prime minister."

Mr Miliband made no comment and refused to answer questions as he left his home in north London on Friday morning.

Sky's Jason Farrell said: "This is probably the biggest crisis he has faced over his leadership thus far."

Video: Balls Denies Miliband Plot Rumours

Mr Miliband was earlier forced to deny reports that several backbenchers had demanded his resignation amid concerns over Labour's prospects of victory at next year's General Election.

Dismissing the reports as "nonsense", Mr Miliband insisted the party was focused "on the country and the things that matter to the country".

In a show of support, former cabinet minister David Blunkett has called for an end to "this bout of political insanity".

Video: Cooper: Miliband Doing A Good Job

"When you are standing on the edge of a cliff it is unwise to believe that by jumping you will suddenly learn to fly," he told The Guardian.

Shadow education secretary Tristram Hunt said Mr Miliband is "the right person to lead Labour and the right person to lead Britain".

One of Labour's biggest individual donors, JML founder John Mills, urged the party to "rally behind its leader ... not to get involved in internecine fighting like this".

Video: Labour Party Is 'Dying'

But Lord Soley, who as an MP chaired the parliamentary party, issued a bleak vision of the party's General Election prospects and suggested Mr Miliband should take a less prominent role as he was not seen by voters as a "charismatic potential prime minister".

And there was further bad news for Mr Miliband as a recording emerged of shadow Welsh secretary Owen Smith saying the party is "dying" and that unless it becomes "much, much more vigorous ... then we are lost".

His remarks were made during a fringe event at a conference organised by CLASS, a left-wing think tank.

Video: Miliband's Approval Rating New Low

A Labour spokesperson said: "Anyone who was at the event would know that this comment was a humorous dig at the age of the people attending the fringe meeting and not a comment on the Labour movement.

"It is ludicrous to twist it in this fashion.‎"

18.25 | 0 komentar | Read More

Bakery Faces Legal Action Over Gay Rights Cake

Written By andika jamanta on Kamis, 06 November 2014 | 18.25

A Christian bakery owner says he faces legal action unless he pays out compensation for refusing to make a pro-gay marriage cake.

Ashers Baking Company, in Northern Ireland, turned down an order for a cake with an image of Sesame Street puppets Bert and Ernie below the words "Support Gay Marriage".

The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland took on the case on behalf of the customer, who is a gay rights activist.

Daniel McArthur, general manager of the bakers, said he has received a letter from the commission claiming he has breached anti-discrimination laws.

He said the company has been told if it does not offer compensation within seven days it will face legal action.

Mr McArthur said: "We feel that the Equality Commission are pursuing us because of our beliefs that marriage is between a man and a woman.

"It feels like a David and Goliath battle because on one hand we have the Equality Commission who are a public body, they're funded by taxpayers' money, they have massive resources at their disposal whereas we are a small family business and we have limited resources at our disposal.

"We're continuing to hold to the stand that we took originally because we believe it's biblical, we believe it's what God would want us to do, and we also think that if we do cave in to the Equality Commission at this point it'll put pressure on other citizens who are defending their view of traditional marriage."

Simon Calvert, spokesman for the Christian Institute, said: "It is simply baffling for a body supposedly working for equality to be threatening a Christian family with legal action, all because of a cake.

"The Equality Commission has taken four months to dream up new grounds on which to pursue the McArthur family, claiming that they've breached political discrimination laws.

"If supporting same-sex marriage is a protected political opinion, so is supporting traditional marriage. Yet the commission clearly favours one view over another and is prepared to litigate to prove it."

Ashers was founded in Newtownabbey, north of Belfast, in 1992. It has six shops in Northern Ireland and employs around 60 people.

The company was named after a verse from the Bible, which refers to "Bread from Asher".

A spokesman for the Equality Commission said: "The commission has now received a response from the company's solicitors stating that their view remains unchanged that their clients have not acted unlawfully, confirming they have no further proposals to make on their clients behalf and that they will accept service of a civil bill in regard to this matter.

"This case raises issues of public importance regarding the extent to which suppliers of goods and services can refuse service on grounds of sexual orientation, religious belief or political opinion.

"The commission will be issuing a civil bill in this case and a decision as to whether or not discrimination has occurred will be a matter for the court."

The Northern Ireland Assembly has rejected several attempts to change the law on gay marriage.

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Petrol Price Guarantees Demanded By Treasury

A failure by petrol firms and supermarkets to pass on the full benefit of falling oil prices to customers filling up at the pumps would be an "outrage", a Cabinet Minister will warn.

Treasury Chief Secretary Danny Alexander is to demand guarantees from fuel companies and distributors that they are doing all they can to pass on the price cuts to hard-pressed motorists.

Mr Alexander will use a speech in Aberdeen to say consumers feel petrol prices rise "like a rocket" when oil costs go up, but fall "like a feather" when they come down.

And people would "rightly be angry" if they felt prices were not coming down as much as they should.

Video: 'We Still Pay Too Much For Fuel'

Brent crude slumped as low as $82 (£51) a barrel earlier this week, its lowest level in just over four years due to concerns about over-supply.

The Liberal Democrat frontbencher will say: "Especially in the current economic circumstances people would rightly be angry if they feel that pump prices don't fall as much as they should on the back of falling oil prices."

However, investigations into the failure to pass on the fall in the price of oil has been inconclusive.

Mr Alexander is to write to the industry's major players "seeking their assurance that they are doing all they can to pass on the benefit of falling oil prices as quickly as possible".

He will say: "When the price of oil falls, the public have a right to expect pump prices to fall like a stone, not a feather."

His comments came as Asda announced it would be cutting the price of petrol and diesel by 1p to 119.7pm and 123.7p a litre. 

Asda said it was the first time its petrol had gone under 120p a litre in four years. It is expected to trigger a supermarket petrol price war.

Motoring organisations were quick to say there was more then Government could do that just put pressure on oil firms.

Video: Cuts: A Loss Leader Or Real Deal?

RAC Foundation director Professor Stephen Glaister said: "It is encouraging that Mr Alexander shares the concerns of the nation's drivers but in a way he is passing the buck.

"The biggest driver of pump prices remains the Government. Well over 60% of the price is tax."

AA president Edmund King said: "They themselves could do more.

"First, policies to help strengthen the pound by just 10 cents against the dollar would double the potential for a 2p-a-litre fall in the price of petrol to 4p.

"Secondly, the Government's failure to introduce fuel price transparency, showing the relationship between oil, wholesale and pump prices, has helped no one."

Shadow chief secretary to the Treasury Chris Leslie said: "Of course it's right that drivers should benefit from falling oil prices with lower prices at the pumps.

"But since 2011 people have paid 3p more on every litre of petrol because the Lib Dems broke their promise and backed the Tories in raising VAT."

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Teen In Court Over Newcastle College Bomb Plot

A teenager has appeared in court over an alleged bomb plot at a college in Newcastle.

Liam Lyburd appeared at North Tyneside Magistrates' Court charged with possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life, possessing ammunition with intent to endanger life, and five counts of possessing an explosive substance, namely a pipe bomb, with intent to endanger life.

The 18-year-old wore a grey, crew-neck sweater and spoke only to confirm his address and date of birth.

No pleas were entered and Lyburd, from Hamilton Place in the city's west end, was remanded in custody to appear before Newcastle Crown Court on November 20.

The estate where he lives, near Newcastle United's St James' Park football stadium, was cordoned off and 50 homes were evacuated while police carried out searches on Monday night.

Police later said serious harm was intended to be caused at Newcastle College.

The college's former pupils include TV presenters Ant and Dec, comedian Ross Noble and Perrie Edwards from Little Mix. 

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Merkel Warns Cameron On EU Immigration: Reports

Written By andika jamanta on Senin, 03 November 2014 | 18.25

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is reported to have made clear she will withdraw her support for Britain's continued EU membership if David Cameron insists on pushing through curbs on immigration.

News weekly Der Spiegel quoted government sources as saying Ms Merkel fears the UK is approaching "the point of no return" and is becoming worried for the first time that a British exit is a real possibility.

Ms Merkel told the Prime Minister on the sidelines of an EU summit last month that his efforts to limit immigration undermined core principles of bloc, the magazine reports.

"Should Cameron persist (in this plan), Chancellor Angela Merkel would abandon her efforts to keep Britain in the EU," the sources were quoted as telling the magazine.

"With that a point of no return would be reached," they said, adding: "That would be it then."

Video: Closer Look At Immigration Figures

There was no suggestion in the Der Spiegel report that Germany would itself push Britain towards the exit.

Ms Merkel has said she strongly backs continued British membership, but not at any price.

No member state has ever left the 28-nation bloc, although there is a legal mechanism for a country to do so if it chooses. Other member states cannot force a country out.

The Prime Minister wants to renegotiate the terms of Britain's membership ahead of the Conservatives' promised referendum by the end of 2017.

He is under pressure to tighten the UK's immigration controls to counter the growing popularity of UKIP.

Mr Cameron will be aware of the need to calm Tory jitters ahead of this month's crunch by-election in Rochester and Strood, where the party is desperate to prevent a second seat falling to UKIP.

Video: EU Demand: What Are PM's Options?

The Sunday Times reported he was drawing up plans to ban migrants who do not have a jobs and deport those who are unable to support themselves after three months in the country.

A Downing Street spokesman said: "The Prime Minister will do what is right for Britain, as he has repeatedly made clear."

However, a German government spokesman said the general principle of freedom of movement in the EU is not negotiable, but added there is a strong interest in the two countries discussing how tackle abuse of that freedom.

Mr Cameron is unlikely to have welcomed comments at the weekend by arch pro-European former cabinet minister Ken Clarke, who dismissed UKIP as an "extreme right-wing protest party" and said free movement of labour is "absolutely essential" to the functioning of the single market.

He said: "If you're going to have a sensible single market, if we want to compete with the Americans and the Chinese and so on and modern world, we need the free movement of labour."

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Virgin Galactic Descend System Deployed Early

The investigation into the fatal Virgin Galactic spaceship crash has found one of the pilots deployed the "feathering" function too early.

Camera footage from inside SpaceShipTwo revealed that the key safety feature which helps the craft descend was unlocked by the co-pilot.

But the head of America's National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Christopher Hart, stressed he was not saying this had been the cause of the disaster and that the investigation was still in its earliest stages.

Mr Hart said the "feathering" function - which involves the rotation of the tail boom - should have been deployed when the vehicle was travelling about 1.4 times the speed of sound. 

But the feather began rotating when the vehicle was travelling at Mach 1.0.

Video: NTSB News Conference

"Normal launch procedures are that after the release, the ignition of the rocket, and acceleration, the feathering devices are not to be moved," he said.

"The lock/unlock lever is not to be moved into the unlock position until the acceleration is up to Mach 1.4. Instead, as I indicated, that occurred at approximately Mach 1.0."

Mr Hart also said the craft's fuel tanks and engine had been recovered intact, indicating there was no explosion.

He told reporters the fuel tanks and engine showed no signs of "burn through" or of being breached.

Video: Virgin Crash A 'Massive Setback'

"The engine burn was normal up until the extension of the feathers," Mr Hart told reporters.

Nearly all the important parts of the vessel had been recovered and had been taken to a hangar for examination.

Virgin boss Richard Branson said the NTSB, were doing "an incredibly thorough investigation" and that "irresponsible innuendo" in some sections of the media over the cause of the crash had been "hurtful".

Speaking exclusively to Sky News from his island retreat of Necker, he said: "It was incredibly hurtful to the 400 engineers who had worked so gallantly at Virgin Galactic and all the engineers who worked on the manufacture of the spaceship.

Video: Press Should Hang Their Heads

"If the press had looked at the photographs they would have seen full fuel tanks and engine intact on the ground.

"Yet they were talking about a massive explosion and of people ejecting out of the plane; we do not have (ejector) seats. The British press at its worst, to be honest."

SpaceShipTwo exploded over California's Mojave Desert during its 35th test flight shortly after being released at high altitude from its mothership WhiteKnightTwo.

Virgin Galactic had been aiming to become the first commercial "spaceline" by beginning tourist flights to the edge of space next year.


  1. Gallery: Virgin Galactic Crash Wreckage

    Investigators examine the wreckage of the Virgin Galactic spacecraft which crashed in the Mojave Desert. They claim it could take a year to determine the cause of the accident

  2. The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) team is expected to spend the next week at the crash site in California

  3. The ship broke up in mid-air during a test flight on Friday. One of the pilots was killed and the other injured

  4. The team has already completed its first full day of the investigation

  5. Officials say they are expected to trawl through "extensive data" - which is why the full investigation could take about 12 months or so

  6. The craft's debris was spread over an area measuring five miles from end to end

  7. Police secured the crash site in the Mojave Desert amid fears that some of the debris could be explosive

  8. The spacecraft was on its first test flight for nine months when it crashed near the town of Bakersfield

Justin Bieber, Ashton Kutcher, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are among those who are said to have already reserved seats and paid a deposit on the $250,000 (£156,000) ticket price for a minute-long suborbital flight on SpaceShipTwo.

Mr Branson underlined the fact the accident occurred during a test flight and that Virgin would not take tourists into space unless it was safe.

"I once said if we had an accident... once we had started carrying passengers in the early days, it would be very difficult to recover from that," he said.

"I think that hopefully this is slightly different, in that we had test pilots testing the spacecraft, in extreme situations, to make sure it was safe for passengers."

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Ann Maguire's Killer Planned More Murders

A teenager has pleaded guilty to the murder of Leeds school teacher Ann Maguire, who was stabbed to death in front of her pupils.

The 16-year-old, who cannot be named, killed the Spanish teacher at Corpus Christi College in April.

He had previously "accepted responsibility for unlawful killing"  but issued a formal guilty plea to the murder charge at Leeds Crown Court.

The court heard that the boy had planned to kill two other teachers, including one who was pregnant, but had "harboured a deep-seated and irrational hatred" for Mrs Maguire and "wanted her dead".

Two months before the murder, the boy sent a message on Facebook which said of Mrs Maguire: "The one absolute f****** bitch that deserves more than death, more than pain and more than anything that we can understand."

But when he told schoolmates that he was going to attack Mrs Maguire with a knife, the court heard "many did not take him seriously". He had even showed some of the other pupils the knife on the day of the murder, telling them what he planned to do but said he would "kill them" if they told anyone else.

The court was told that the teenager had stabbed Mrs Maguire from behind in the neck and back with a large kitchen knife as she leaned over a desk to look at another pupil's work. 

A young witness told of how he watched the stabbing, adding: "I remember sitting there in absolute panic and shock", while another witness said there was "no expression on the boy's face" as he attacked his teacher. When she tried to run from him, he pursued her.

Another teacher saw Mrs Maguire running down a corridor, saying: "He's stabbed me in the neck", with the boy chasing her. The female teacher had pushed her colleague into a workroom and then blocked the door to prevent the boy getting in.

Afterwards he had returned to the classroom saying: "I've stabbed her, pity she didn't die" before sitting back down and waiting, the court heard.

Prosecutors said that the boy's parents are "decent and responsible" and are at a loss to understand what has happened.

Follow the live blog at http://news.sky.com/story/1365736/live-teen-winked-before-stabbing-teacher

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Virgin Galactic Crash Probe Could Take A Year

Written By andika jamanta on Minggu, 02 November 2014 | 18.25

Investigators examining the wreckage of the Virgin Galactic spacecraft which crashed in the Mojave Desert say it could take a year to determine the cause of the accident.

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) officials are expected to spend a week at the crash site in California.

They will carry out interviews and gather further evidence before beginning an analysis of what caused Friday's crash, which killed the co-pilot and injured the pilot.

NTSB acting chairman Christopher Hart said the full investigation may take up to 12 months, adding that Virgin Galactic can continue to operate while the probe is under way.

Mr Hart said investigators will use evidence from several cameras located on the craft to determine why it broke apart over the desert.

Video: Virgin Crash A 'Massive Setback'

"Because it was a test flight, it was heavily documented in ways that we don't usually see with normal accidents," he said.

Details of the investigation came as emails emerged suggesting concerns had previously been raised about operating procedures of Virgin Galactic's partner Scaled Composites, following the earlier deaths of three people during a test.

Sir Richard Branson has admitted the fatal Virgin Galactic crash is a "massive setback for commercial space travel", but said it was not acceptable to comment on the cause until the full investigation has taken place.

He said: "To be honest I find it slightly irresponsible that people who know nothing about what they are saying can be saying things before the NTSB makes their comments."

The Virgin Group founder also said: "It is a horrible day for Virgin Galactic, for commercial space travel - it's a massive setback.

Video: Space Ticket Holder Undeterred

"But we've got to pick ourselves up and see whether the problem is fixable, and hopefully move the programme forward.

"I'm hopeful we'll be able to overcome the problems."

Justin Bieber, Ashton Kutcher, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are among those who are said to have bought tickets for a future flight and Sir Richard said none of the 700 ticket holders have backed out so far.

In fact, Sir Richard said, one more person had bought a ticket since the crash.

Co-pilot Michael Alsbury, 39, from Tehachapi, California, was killed.


  1. Gallery: Images Showing Wreckage Of SpaceshipTwo In The Mojave Desert

    SpaceShipTwo and its mother ship WhiteKnightTwo are pictured before the test flight. Pic: Virgin Galactic/Scaled Composites/Jason DiVenere

  2. Part of the wreckage from the Virgin Galactic SpaceshipTwo lies in California's Mojave Desert after it crashed

  3. Photographer Ken Brown said the craft was released from the plane that carries it to high altitude, ignited its rocket motor and then exploded

  4. Two pilots were on board. California authorities said one died and the other was badly hurt

  5. A witness said the space tourism craft exploded during a test flight over the desert

  6. The aim of such flights was to assess SpaceShipTwo in preparation for suborbital trips to the edge of space about 62 miles above the Earth

  7. Hundreds of people have already reserved seats and paid a deposit on the $250,000 (£156,000) ticket price for the flights. Pic: Virgin Galactic

  8. After several delays, Sir Richard Branson's company had hoped to start taking passengers to the edge of space in 2015

  9. But space expert Marco Caceres said: "You are not going to see any commercial space tourism flight next year or probably several years after that."

The pilot, Peter Siebold, 43, was badly injured after ejecting.

Scaled Composites, which works with Virgin Galactic on the project, said its employee he has begun to communicate with his family at the Antelope Valley Hospital, where he is being treated.

The tragedy occurred after SpaceShipTwo fired up its rocket following a high-altitude drop from its WhiteKnightTwo mothership.

Virgin Galactic had been aiming to become the first commercial "spaceline", by beginning tourist flights to the edge of space next year.

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British 'Banker' Held Over Suitcase Murder

By Mark Stone, Asia Correspondent, in Hong Kong

Police in Hong Kong are continuing to question a British banker over the murder of two young women, one of whom was discovered inside a suitcase.

Rurik Jutting, 29, who attended University of Cambridge and Winchester College, was arrested after the bodies were discovered in an apartment in Hong Kong's Wan Chai district.

It is understood that police arrived at the apartment in the early hours of Saturday morning after receiving a call from the suspect, who until recently worked for the Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Officers arrived to find the body of a woman, aged between 25 and 30, lying naked in the living room with knife wounds to her neck and backside. They also encountered a small amount of cocaine in the flat.

Assistant Commander Wan Siu-hung told reporters: "We believe the death was caused by a sharp object which cut the throat of the deceased.

"This led to copious bleeding. When the police found her, she was lying in the living room. The room was messy."

Eight hours later, at about noon on Saturday, police widened the forensic examination of the apartment and made the second discovery.

The body of a second woman was found wrapped in a blanket inside a brown suitcase on a balcony at the apartment.

She too had wounds to the neck, and it is believed the victim had been dead "for quite some time". Police sources have told local media that the second victim is a 25-year-old who they believe worked in the sex industry. 

A police spokesman added: "From what we can see it was intentionally hidden because it was put in a travel suitcase."

Police have confirmed no further details regarding his identity or nationality though it is understood one of the women was from Indonesia, while the other was from the Philippines.

Mr Jutting studied history and law at Cambridge University.

He had worked for Merrill Lynch from 2010 until only a couple of days ago, spending three years at their offices in London before moving to Hong Kong in July last year. Prior to that he worked at Barclays in London.

The neighbourhood of Wan Chai is effectively Hong Kong's red light district. A large number of women from southeast Asia spend time in the district's many bars and clubs.

Hong Kong police can hold their suspect for up to 48 hours without charging or releasing him.

A Foreign Office spokesman confirmed a British national had been arrested in Hong Kong, although did not specify the nature of the crime.

"We are in touch with the local police and stand ready to provide consular assistance," she said.

The case is unusual in Hong Kong, which has one of the world's lowest homicide rates.

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