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Archive for September 8th, 2009

Wealthy British playboy Thanos Papalexis killed tenant to finish £2m property deal

Times: A British playboy who held a fundraising event for Hillary Clinton is facing life imprisonment for the murder of a caretaker who stood in the way of a £2 million property deal.

Thanos Papalexis, 37, tortured and killed Charalambos Christodoulides after he refused to move out of a flat in a North London warehouse that the struggling developer was trying to sell.Mr Christodoulides, 55, a shy loner known as Bambi, was hooded, tied to a chair, beaten and strangled. His body was wrapped in a sheet, covered with paint-stripper and hidden.

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New controls help protect jobs for British workforce

Home Office: A raft of new government measures will ensure that resident workers can have every opportunity to fill vacancies before they are offered to workers abroad, the Home Secretary announced today.Following careful consideration, the government has accepted the recommendations made last month by the Migration Advisory Committee to tighten up the rules controlling when skilled workers are allowed to take jobs in the United Kingdom under the government’s points-based system.

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Terror trial: Counting the cost

Independent:

Q: Do these convictions finally prove that there was a British plot to blow up transatlantic airliners using liquid bombs?

Yes, but not as conclusively as the prosecution would have liked. Although convictions were secured against three of the defendants, including ringleader Abdulla Ahmed Ali, 28, the jury acquitted three others of the bomb plot. The jury also failed to reach a verdict on another man.

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How web of intelligence led to Pakistan

Independent: The links between the British conspirators of the liquid bomb plot and Pakistan are defined by a Birmingham baker’s son with links to al-Qa’ida who is suspected of playing a key role in a succession of attacks on the UK.

Rashid Rauf is widely believed by British intelligence sources to have been a key co-ordinator and planner of the conspiracy to blow up airliners travelling from Britain to at least seven North American cities. Indeed, it was the unexpected arrest of the 25-year-old Briton, allegedly as a result of White House pressure on the Pakistani authorities, which led to the bringing forward of the Scotland Yard operation to arrest the liquid bomb suspects in August 2006 at a time when police were still gathering evidence on their plot.

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Google restored in China after porn row, ex-chief Kaifu Lee says

Telegraph: Google is again fully up and running in China after a row in which authorities accused the US internet giant of illegally spreading pornographic content, the firm’s outgoing regional chief Kaifu Lee said on Monday.

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Buyers of Skype on course for a legal showdown with its founders

Times: The founders of Skype last night were heading for a legal battle with the new owners of the internet telephony business over the technology that powers it.

A court case between eBay, the owner, and Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom — a fight that eBay admitted could shut down the service — is to be heard next June. Despite this, a private investment group agreed last week to pay $2 billion (£1.2 billion) for a majority stake in Skype.

Speculation that the new investors — which include Silver Lake Partners, the private equity firm, and Andreessen Horowitz and Index Ventures, the venture capital firms — had cut a deal with the founders to resolve the litigation were wide of the mark, people close to the case told The Times.

Mr Friis and Mr Zennstrom, who fell out with eBay over its running of Skype and whose attempts to buy back the company this year were rebuffed, have said that they are determined to defend their rights.

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Top terror suspect is freed over secrets fear

Times: The Home Secretary has released a man regarded as one of Britain’s most dangerous terror suspects from virtual house arrest to avoid disclosing secret evidence against him, The Times has learnt.

The man, known only as AF, has been subject to a controversial “control order” since 2006 because of his alleged links with Islamic terrorists. He has never been charged, however, and the evidence for the allegations has never been heard in a public court.

The control order was revoked last week and the suspect’s electronic tag removed, setting him free in spite of the Government’s claim that he remains a threat.

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