Friday 16 January 2004

By Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex

Asylum is causing a crisis for NHS says Iraqi GP
The large number of immigrants is over stretching family
doctors an Iraqi-born GP has warned.
Dr Zuhair Najim, who has 1,500 asylum seekers on his books, said he
is working 12-hour days seven days a week to keep up.
He has 4,700 patients on his books in total at his North London
surgery, two-and-a half times more than the national average.
Source:- The Daily Mail Friday 16 January page 19
Anger of judge who had to jail molester for just 18

A judge has criticised sentencing rules that only allowed him to
jail a paedophile for 18-months due to his victim’s age.
Judge Huw Daniel made the remarks in the case of Gary Thomas, who
has committed a series of sexual assaults on a 14-year-old
If the girl had been a year younger Thomas could have received a
maximum sentence of life imprisonment. As she was 14 this was
reduced to a maximum of two years.
The law only sees those aged under 14 as children. Those aged 14-18
are seen as young people.
Source:- The Daily Mail Friday 16 January page 23
MP’s plea wins change to law on ‘baby

The law on baby bonds is set to be changed in regards to disabled
children after a plea from an MP with a disabled son.
David Cameron, whose 21-year-old son Ivan has severe epilepsy and
cerebral palsy, suggested that the rules be changed to enable
parents with disabled children to put more money into “baby bonds”.
He also called for such parents to be allowed to withdraw it before
the age of 18 to pay for care or special equipment.
Treasury minister Ruth Kelly said yesterday that she was going to
amend the law going through parliament.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph Friday 16 January page 2
Paedophile banned from using internet
A paedophile has been banned from using the internet or a mobile
phone for the next five years.
Railway guard Gary Geoffrey Thomas, aged 37, of Swadlincott, South
Derbyshire, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for unlawful sex
with a 14-year-old girl.
Judge Huw Daniel, sitting at Mold crown court, issued a restraining
order against Thomas to not subscribe to, or use, the internet or
nay mobile telephone of any description.
The court was told that Thomas claimed he was 20 when he conned his
way into the affections of the girl via the internet. The order is
believed to be one of the first in the country in the battle
against paedophiles using the internet to find young girls to have
sex with.
Source:- The Independent Friday 16 January page 12
Five held on child cruelty charges
Four ex-teachers and a former care assistant from a school in
Norfolk have been charged with child cruelty.
Two of the men have also been charged with indecent assault in the
charges dating from 1976 to 2002.
All five have been bailed to appear at Thetford magistrates’
court later this month.
Source: The Guardian Friday 16 January page 12
Scottish newspapers
Council to employ 20 new staff in wake of Miss X

Borders social work department is facing a radical shake-up,
including the appointment of 20 new staff, in the wake of the
“Miss X” case.
Serious shortcomings were identified in the way the region’s
social work services were being supervised and delivered in a
series of consultants’ reports.
The council is set to announce details of a total restructuring of
the department, in a bid to reduce excessive case loads and address
criticisms of bureaucratic structures.
Miss X, a 30-year-old woman with learning difficulties, was
tortured and abused by three attackers over a period of several
months. The case is likely to resurface with the publication of
findings from an investigation carried out by the Social Work
Services Inspectorate.
Source:- The Scotsman Friday 16 January
U-turn on cot death link to sharing bed
A study yesterday suggested that parents sleeping in the same bed
as their newborn babies doubles the chance of cot death.
Where both parents smoked and the bed was shared, the risk of cot
death increased 100 fold, the comprehensive project into infant
death syndrome revealed.
A review of guidance to parents in Scotland is now planned after
the study found putting the baby on its back with no bedding other
than a jumpsuit or light covers was crucial to lowering the risk of
cot death.
Source:- The Herald  Friday 16 January
Children as young as three are obese
Children as young as three are showing signs of obesity because
they are not getting sufficient exercise, research claimed
Scientists at Glasgow University found many children only spend 20
to 25 minutes every day doing rigorous physical activity instead of
the recommended 60 minutes.
Source:- The Herald Friday 16 January
Face slash girl locked up for year
A teenage girl who slashed a girl’s face with a craft knife
was yesterday imprisoned for a year.
Debbie Drennan was left with a three-and-a-half inch cut beneath
her left eye after Natalie Kerr attacked her with the tool.
Kerr, now 16, admitted assaulting her victim to her severe injury
and permanent disfigurement last May.
Source:- Daily Record  Friday 16 January page 35
Courts lose power to jail fine dodgers
Fewer Scots who can’t afford to pay fines will end up in
prison, under a pilot scheme launched yesterday.
Around 4,000 offenders north of the Border are imprisoned each year
as a result of defaulting on financial fines imposed by the
However, under the pilot scheme at Ayr sheriff court and Glasgow
Stipendiary magistrates’ court, the usual jail terms will be
replaced with supervised attendance orders.
Offenders could be required to attend courses to sort out their
finances as well as carry out some community work.
Source:- Daily Record  Friday 16 January page 36
Welsh newspapers
Shock tactics praised

A national campaign highlighting domestic violence has received
support in south Wales.
The Refuge campaign is running until March with a series of posters
urging the public not to ignore domestic violence. Both the police
and Victim Support groups have welcomed the new campaign, which
they say will help victims to come forward and get help. Source:-
South Wales Argus Thursday 15 January page 12
A stately house? A top hotel? No- this is a nursing

New plans for a £18 million site in Cardiff that will house up
to 94 older people and a centre for the charity, Scope, have been
unveiled. The development is a joint project from the Sunrise
Senior Living Scheme, and the charity and will provide assisted
living for frail older people and facilities for people with
Source:- South Wales Echo Thursday 15 January page 14

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