Wednesday 26 November 2003

By Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex

Soham girls died by accident, trial told

Ian Huntley’s lawyers claimed at the Old Bailey yesterday
that Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman, the school-girls Huntley is
accused of murdering, died in an accident in his bathroom.

The former caretaker at the girls’ school in Soham said the
children had entered his house as Holly was suffering from a
nosebleed and required assistance.

He claims that, while he was turning around to get some tissue
to help Holly, he banged into her and knocked her into the bath
which had water in to wash his dog.

Huntley claims that Jessica then started screaming accusations
that Huntley had pushed her friend and he put his hand over her
mouth to silence her.

Both girls stopped breathing as a result of the incidents, he

Source:- The Financial Times Wednesday 26 November page

Ripper they left at large

A row has broken out over why a man who killed two women within
two months of being freed from a mental hospital was released.

Following release, Anthony Hardy – dubbed the ‘Camden Ripper’ –
killed two women, dismembered their corpses and left their body
parts scattered in different places near his home in north

Hardy pleaded guilty to the two murders together with that of a
third woman who had been believed to have died of natural causes a
year earlier.

The mental health appeal panel, which decided on his release,
did not know that Hardy had already killed once. For reasons that
are unclear, they did not see reports from medical staff and social
workers recommending that he stay in St Luke’s Hospital in Muswell
Hill, north London.

Erville Millar, chief executive of Camden and Islington Mental
Health and Social Care Trust defended the panel’s decision last
night, saying that Hardy’s condition had improved.

Source:- Daily Mail Wednesday 26 November page 20

Councils relieved of asylum care costs

Home secretary David Blunkett has vowed to fight a court ruling
that states the Home Office is financially responsible for
supporting destitute asylum seekers with children.

A High Court judge ruled that the National Asylum Support
Service, not the London Borough of Haringey, is responsible for
supporting a Ugandan mother suffering from HIV and her two children
until she receives an asylum decision.

The woman has been in Britain since 1998 after coming over to
join her husband who was a student with a work permit. She has
since left him due to domestic violence and is waiting for a
decision about her case for asylum.

The judge said Nass had exclusive responsibility for the family,
not just the children.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 26 November page 2

Blair will use broadcast to seek support for

The prime minister will outline his proposals for coming
legislation in the Queen’s Speech today.

He is set to use a party political broadcast to put forward his
plans to the public and call on them to take part in a national
consultation on the direction of policy, to be launched on

The bills include an asylum bill that will introduce tough
measures to crack down on failed asylum seekers and a domestic
violence bill introducing tougher penalties for offenders.

Source:- The Independent Wednesday 26 November page

Chronicle of a death foretold

Leonard Hockey spent most of his life on the streets, begging to
feed his drug addiction. Officials say that he was offered help,
but was he on a path to self-destruction?

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Tales travel to new audience

A website for gypsies to tell their stories and to respond to
other people’s has been launched by a clinical hypnotherapist and
campaigner for Romany culture.

Richard O’Neill, who comes from a Gypsy family, is behind and said that the strengths of Romany
culture are unknown and often undervalued, even by Gypsies.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Business with a conscience

An American billionaire has donated £4.4m to Oxford
University to create a centre for social entrepreneurship.

Jeff Skill, ranked by Fortune magazine as the fourth wealthiest
person under 40 in the US, is founder and chairperson of the $300m
Skoll foundation. His donation is set to create the first academic
establishment aimed solely at studying and promoting businesses
that trade for a social purpose.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Where there’s a will

The government has promised to improve services for people with
learning disabilities – but without extra cash can Rob Greig

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Learning to listen

Consulting children on public services is all the rage. But is
it just tokenism?

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Through the back door

With staff safety checks taking weeks to be completed, home care
agencies say they are facing a recruitment crisis that threatens
the service

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Close encounters

Freed from England, the Welsh do management differently – but
still keep an eye on their neighbour over the border

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

What else can I do?

After three years developing training programmes for volunteers
at advice centres, Caroline, 32, is ready for a new challenge.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 26 November page

Scottish news

Girl, 11, escaped abuse by getting herself

A girl deliberately got herself expelled from school and taken
into care in a bid to escape from a dangerous paedophile, a court
heard yesterday.

The child was one of a number of girls to fall prey to Peter
Duffy, but her mother disbelieved her claims that he abused

Duffy was jailed for life at Edinburgh High Court after he
admitted charges of rape and indecency and Lady Paton ordered he
serve a minimum of 12 years before he could apply for parole.

Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 26 November

Councillor calls for action over Leith

Householders should protest to MSPs over their failure to tackle
the issue of prostitution, Edinburgh’s licensing leader has

Councillor Phil Attridge has written to residents in his Lorne
constituency in Leith calling on them to lobby the Scottish
Parliament and Malcolm Chisholm, the health minister.

The move comes amid growing complaints in the city about
problems caused by prostitutes working the streets near family
homes in and around the “red light” areas of Leith.

Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 26 November

Nothing but the best for pupil battling

A 17-year-old pupil with Asperger’s syndrome has been
named as Scottish schools, candidate of the year after achieving
the best exam results in the history of his school.

Andrew McCall of Castlemilk High was unanimously chosen by the
Scottish Qualifications Authority’s judging panel for the
courage and resilience he showed in achieving five Highers
(including four grade A band 1s) despite being diagnosed as
suffering from the syndrome last year.

Source:- The Herald Wednesday 26 November

Welsh news

‘My baby was treated like a piece of

A mother who is taking part in a group action against the
Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust over the disposal of body parts says
that she still has nightmares about what happened to her baby.

Julie Gaughan’s baby son Stephan died from cot death, but
it was not until 12 years later that she discovered that organs and
samples from his body had been removed without consent.

Together with 66 other claimants, she is suing the trust for

Source:- South Wales Echo Tuesday 25 November pages 1,
2 and 3

Wife ‘not told’ of patient’s

A woman has claimed that her stroke victim husband was
transferred to a nursing home without her knowledge because his bed
was required for another patient.

Anne Leather also alleges that she was not informed that her
husband was suffering from a rash and a chest infection before her
husband was moved from Bronglais Hospital in Aberystwyth to a
nursing home in Carmarthen.

She has now made an official complaint and a local councillor
has written on her behalf to the hospital and health officials,
complaining about the way Leather’s husband’s care had
been managed.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 26 November page 5

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