■ Hillsborough families to seek review after case dropped
HILLSBOROUGH families will call for a review of the decision not to prosecute former police chief Sir Norman Bettison, after the case against him was discontinued.
Sir Norman (pictured above), 62, had been charged with four counts of misconduct in a public office, all relating to alleged lies he told following the disaster at the 1989 FA Cup semi-final, in which 96 Liverpool fans died.
At a hearing before judge Sir Peter Openshaw at Preston Crown Court today, Sarah Whitehouse QC, prosecuting, said the proceedings would be discontinued as there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction.
Speaking outside court, Steve Kelly, the brother of victim Michael, 38, said: ‘I’m absolutely devastated. I feel as if I’ve been beaten up this morning.’
■ Windrush scandal: Home secretary apologises to 18 people
SAJID JAVID has apologised to 18 members of the Windrush generation who may have been wrongfully removed from the UK or held in immigration detention.
The home secretary (pictured above) took the step after a review by his department provided the clearest indication yet of the impact of the scandal.
A trawl of nearly 12,000 historical records has uncovered evidence suggesting 18 people suffered ‘detriment’ because their right to be in the country was not recognised.
The finding relates to individuals who were unable to demonstrate ‘continuous residence’, despite records indicating that they came to the UK from the Caribbean prior to 1973 and stayed permanently. This resulted in them being removed or detained in an immigration removal facility or a reporting centre.
Mr Javid said: ‘I would like to personally apologise to those identified in our review and am committed to providing them with the support and compensation they deserve.’
■ Majority of NHS trusts refusing to offer caesareans — study
PREGNANT women requesting a caesarean section face multiple barriers from the majority of NHS trusts in the UK and are sometimes refused outright, new research has revealed.
Guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) state women who ask for a caesarean should be offered one if, after support and discussion with a doctor, they feel it is best for them.
But a report by childbirth charity Birthrights found that only 26 per cent of trusts were abiding by the guidelines and many women faced delays and difficulties in requesting a caesarean on non-medical grounds.
It found that 47 per cent of trusts had inconsistent or confusing policies on offering caesareans on request and raised concerns that women who had previously undergone traumatic births would be unable to access the care they need.
The charity said it also feared that women who may have been through sexual assault or were vulnerable due to language barriers, mental health problems or learning difficulties were being forced to undergo unsafe vaginal births.
■ Far-right graffiti vandal jailed for six years
A FAR-RIGHT group supporter has been jailed for six years after a month-long hate campaign, which included spray-painting landmarks with swastikas.
Austin Ross, 23, stuck racist posters on buildings around his home town, as well as torching a school and a masonic lodge, causing tens of thousands of pounds worth of damage.
A court heard Ross was both a supporter of activist Tommy Robinson and far-right group System Resistance Network, and that he painted their initials SRN as well as messages such as Free Tommy Robinson on buildings.
Between May 2 and May 31 this year he also spray-painted Nazi symbols and stuck racist propaganda on to landmarks around his hometown of Newport, south Wales.
■ Businessman killed in helicopter crash ‘leaves £41m’ to Oxfam
A BRITISH businessman who died alongside his family in a helicopter crash has left a reported £41million fortune to scandal-hit charity Oxfam.
The organisation said today it was ‘extremely grateful’ for the bequest from Richard Cousins, who died alongside his fiancée, his two sons and her daughter in the crash on New Year’s Eve in Sydney.
The sum will be a welcome boost to the charity’s coffers after it reported thousands had cancelled donations in the wake of the Haiti sex scandal.
Oxfam was unable to confirm the sum donated, but The Sun reported it to be £41million.
A ‘common tragedy clause’ was drawn up in his will a year before the accident stating that the charity would be the main beneficiary if he was killed alongside his sons, the newspaper said.