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August 12, 2011

Three killed amongst Birmingham, England riots

Three killed amongst Birmingham, England riots

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Friday, August 12, 2011

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A car fatally crashed into three individuals in the British city of Birmingham, England. The three men, aged 31, 30, and 21, died during a second consecutive night of violent events in Birmingham.

The incident occurred at approximately 0100 BST (0000 UTC) Wednesday morning in the Birmingham inner-city region of Winson Green. The men were attempting to protect property from nearby riots. Witness reports say that the vehicle contained as many as three passengers and drove at a speed of fifty miles per hour without stopping after the crash.

Police have since recovered a vehicle and arrested a 32-year-old male in association with the incident, on a charge of murder. According to Chief Constable Chris Sims, the details of the incident West Midlands Police have would indicate that “the car was deliberately driven”.

Tariq Jahan, the father of one of those killed, said his son, 21-year-old Haroon Jahan, was attempting to protect the area from nearby violence and unrest. Jahan said he had attempted to perform CPR at the scene of the incident. Jahan said his son was “a very good lad, a good man starting at the beginning of his life and had his whole life ahead of him. I’ve got no words to describe why he was taken and why this has happened and what’s happening to the whole of England.” Jahan said violent acts like this which killed innocent bystanders made “no sense”.

Cquote1.svg [There is] simply no excuse whatsoever for the violence, looting and destruction Cquote2.svg

Nick Clegg, British Deputy Prime Minister

A statement released from West Midlands Police says that “detectives are treating [this incident] as murder. Three men were taken to hospital where two later died from their injuries. A third man was in a critical condition but confirmed dead at around 6:30AM. West Midlands Police have launched a murder inquiry, arrested one man in connection with the incident and recovered a vehicle nearby which will be examined by forensics experts,” the force stated. Police have requested that individuals contact them if they have any information about the incident. About 200 people from the Asian community have gathered at the hospital where the victims were transported after the crash. Two of the victims were known to be brothers. All three of them were reported to be Pakistani Muslims.

The West Midlands has seen other instances of violent behavior. Thefts have taken place in the city centre of Birmingham, West Bromwich and in Wolverhampton. The charges being brought against suspects on remand for court appearances include public disorder offences, such as violent disorder and aggravated burglary. Six police officers have experienced minor injuries as a result of the violence.

According to police, a scrapyard fire which occurred in Birmingham is unrelated to recent violence. Two ambulances were attacked in two separate incidents with objects being thrown at the vehicles. Ambulance staff were left uninjured in both cases. Ambulances have appeared on thirty-five occasions in West Bromwich, Wolverhampton and various parts of Birmingham. Thirty-one individuals were given ambulance staff treatment, with nineteen receiving hospital treatment, albeit for practically minor assaults in most cases.

In Wolverhampton and West Bromwich, there have been reports of roads and streets being closed. Wolverhampton and Birmingham have experienced significant travel disruption, with buses not entering city centres last night. One vehicle in Birmingham and two in West Bromwich have been set alight amongst the violence. Various businesses have also been targeted, such as M&S and a high fidelity shop in Birmingham. A jewelry business in Wolverhampton has been robbed of ornaments, watches and money.

Yesterday, British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg condemned the violent actions of individuals, claiming there was “simply no excuse whatsoever for the violence, looting and destruction”. Below is a picture gallery of the damage caused by public disorder in Birmingham Tuesday night:

Various buildings in Birmingham have been damaged by rioting, including this hairdressing shop. Image: Clare Lovell.

Various buildings in Birmingham have been damaged by rioting, including this hairdressing shop.
Image: Clare Lovell.

This ATM has been left damaged by rioting. Image: Clare Lovell.

This ATM has been left destroyed by rioting.
Image: Clare Lovell.

A window of this mobile phone store has been badly damaged by violence. Image: Clare Lovell.

A window of this mobile phone store has been badly damaged by violence.
Image: Clare Lovell.



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September 6, 2009

Man charged with attempted murder in £40 million London jewel heist

Man charged with attempted murder in £40 million London jewel heist

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Sunday, September 6, 2009

24-year-old Aman Kassaye, of no fixed abode, is to face a charge of attempted murder for his alleged role in an armed robbery that netted £40 million ($65 million) worth of jewelry from a London store.

Kassaye is the seventh man to be charged, and is also facing prosecution for conspiracy to rob the Graff store in New Bond Street, false imprisonment, and using a handgun to resist arrest. He will appear at Wimbledon magistrates court on Monday.

The other six men have already been remanded in custody until October 23, when they will appear at Kingston Crown Court. All are facing charges of conspiracy to rob, and two of them are also charged with a firearms offense.

43 diamond rings, watches, and bracelets were taken from the store. The theft occurred when two armed and suited men walked in and took an employee hostage. It has been reported they used prosthetic masks made from liquid latex but police have not confirmed this. Amateur footage also shows a shot was fired. No-one was injured.

The robbery is one of the biggest the United Kingdom has seen. After the crime a string of getaway vehicles was used, with police believing several more offenders assisted with this stage of the plan. Although The Telegraph claims no stolen property has yet been recovered, this is also unconfirmed by police.



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Graff Diamonds robbery
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August 13, 2009

British gemstone expert killed by mob in Voi, Kenya

British gemstone expert killed by mob in Voi, Kenya

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Tsavorite Gem which Bridges discovered

A mob of 20 men have killed a leading British gemologist in the town of Voi in Kenya. Campbell Bridges who was born in Scotland was killed at his 600-acre property located within a national park. The attack is reported to be linked to a 3 year dispute over control of the gemstone mines owned by Mr. Bridges.

Police reported that Bridges was driving his pick-up around his land when he was ambushed by 20 men wielding homemade clubs and spears as well as bows and arrows. Bridges fought off the mob with the help of his son and four Kenyan staff. He was transported to hospital but later died. No one else was seriously injured in the attack.

Bruce Bridges, Campbell’s son spoke to reporters about his ordeal. He spoke of how he fled to the capital Nairobi with his father’s body. “As we drove towards our mining camp we found huge thorn trees blocking the road. Eight men with machetes, spears, clubs, knives, bows and arrows appeared, shouting, ‘We’re going to kill you all!’ Then more people came down the mountain like ants — 20 or 30 of them” he said.

Campbell was renowned in the gemstone business. He worked as a special consultant for jewelers Tiffany & Co. He is also credited with the discovery of tsavorite and also involved in the discovery of tanzanite.



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August 11, 2009

Thieves steal £40 million from London jeweller

Filed under: Archived,Crime and law,Europe,Jewellery,London,United Kingdom — admin @ 5:00 am

Thieves steal £40 million from London jeweller

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

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In what police believe is the second-largest heist in Britain, armed robbers stole almost £40 million from a London jewellery shop on August 6.

New Bond Street in 2005
Image: Dickbauch.

Cquote1.svg These men are extremely dangerous and fired at least two shots in busy London streets as they made their getaway. Cquote2.svg

—Detective Chief Inspector Pam Mace

Two men armed with handguns held up employees of the Graff jewellers shop on New Bond Street, taking 43 items, among them expensive watches, bracelets, and rings. The duo escaped in a blue BMW, which they soon abandoned for a Mercedes. After driving to Farm Street, it is believed they may have got away in a third vehicle.

“This was a well planned robbery with a number of vehicles used to help the robbers escape. These men are extremely dangerous and fired at least two shots in busy London streets as they made their getaway,” said Detective Chief Inspector Pam Mace.

“Someone knows who these men are, they would undoubtedly have spoken about it beforehand or boasted about it afterwards,” she added. “I would urge anyone who recognises them, knows the whereabouts of the jewellery or has any other information to contact us.”



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May 31, 2009

Thief steals over €6 million worth of jewels from Paris store

Filed under: Crime and law,Europe,France,Jewellery,Paris,Wackynews — admin @ 5:00 am

Thief steals over €6 million worth of jewels from Paris store

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Sunday, May 31, 2009

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Police reports say that €6 million (approximately US$8.4 million) worth of jewellery was stolen by a single thief on Saturday at the Chopard store in Place Vendome in Paris, France.

The crime happened in broad daylight, at about 15.00 local time (13.00 GMT), near the Ritz Hotel, an official from the Parisian police headquarters stated.

The Agence France-Presse news agency reports that there was no trace of a robbery from the outside of the building.

A saleswoman working at a nearby jeweller’s store said that she hadn’t seen or heard anything. “We were working,” she said.

Chopard jewellery store makes jewels and watches for celebrities and has stores in many of the world’s capital cities.

Last December, several thieves made a record jewel heist worth $100 million at the Harry Winston boutique in the Avenue Montaigne of the Champs-Elysees. An international gang called the Pink Panthers are suspected to have been responsible for that robbery.



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March 18, 2009

Madoff prosecutors want assets from wife and children

Madoff prosecutors want assets from wife and children

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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

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The wife and sons of Bernard Madoff are now under pressure from prosecutors to give up US$2.6 million worth of jewelery and $31.5 million in loans. Madoff made the news recently when he pleaded guilty to running a Ponzi scheme worth billions of dollars.

Prosecutors, who stated their intent on Sunday to seize bonds and cash from Madoff, filed another notice on Tuesday listing assets that they intend to seize, among them “various pieces of jewelry owned or held in the name of Ruth Madoff valued at approximately $2,624,340,” and “approximately 35 sets of watches and cufflinks owned by Bernard Madoff,” as well as $31.5 million in loans made to Madoff’s sons.

Bernard Madoff, aged 70, pleaded guilty last Thursday to cheating investors out of as much as $65 billion in the largest ever Ponzi scheme. He was jailed immediately after his plea, and faces a prison sentence of up to 150 years. Neither his wife nor his sons have been accused of any wrongdoing.



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Wikipedia-logo.png Bernard Madoff on Wikipedia.

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March 13, 2009

Egyptian treasures found in ancient tomb

Egyptian treasures found in ancient tomb

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Friday, March 13, 2009

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A team of archaeologists excavating an Ancient Egyptian tomb have discovered golden jewelry in a recently-discovered lower chamber at the Valley of the Kings burial site in Luxor, Egypt.

Two golden rings and five golden earrings were found in the tomb of Djehuty, an 18th-dynasty official of Queen Hatshepsut, and were probably the property of Djehuty or his family.

The discovery was announced by Farouk Hosni, Egypt’s current Minister of Culture.

The Valley of the Kings

Djehuty was overseer of the treasury and overseer of works for the Queen. Hatshepsut reigned approximately 1479–1458 BCE. Djehuty was responsible for managing the huge amounts of precious goods brought in from Egypt’s military expedition to Punt in the Horn of Africa and the vast building projects of Hatshepsut which have made the female pharaoh one of the most-remembered of any from ancient Egypt.

Djehuty died after Hatshepsut did, sometime during the reign of Thutmosis III. Both Hatshepsut’s and Thutmosis’s names are recorded on the tomb. In a fashion typical of ancient Egyptian rivalries, Hatshepsut’s name was partly obscured on the monument over the tomb sometime after the queen’s death.

The team, led by José Manuel Galán of the National Research Center (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, CSIC), in Madrid, Spain, had been excavating the tomb, designated TT11 and located in the necropolis of Dra’ Abu el-Naga’, since 2002. While much of Djehuty’s funerary equipment was lost to fire in antiquity, the lower chamber of his tomb was concealed at the end of a three-meter shaft and discovered at the end of 2008.

A superficial description of the tomb itself was recorded almost two hundred years ago by 19th-century French Egyptologist Jean-François Champollion, rubble blocking the entrance hindered excavation until the 21st century. In that time, emphasis in Egyptology has changed from the cataloging of treasures to the investigation of ancient culture, life and religion.

Since excavation began, Djehuty’s tomb has yielded a number of surprises. It was discovered that the tomb was re-used repeatedly up to and during the Greco-Roman period. There is an unusual face-on depiction of pharaoh Thutmosis III hunting ducks, and the mummy of a young, bejewelled, as-yet unidentified woman.

Djehuty was an official of Hatshepsut

In 2007, 44 preserved bunches of flowers thought to be from Djehuty’s funeral were found in the site. In their 8th season of excavation, which ended on February 22, 2009, the team also found considerable evidence that below Djehuty’s tomb is a network of burial sites from the 11th dynasty, four thousand years old.

The lower chamber also displays passages from the Egyptian funerary text the Book of the Dead on its walls and a colorful mural of the goddess Nut, an embodiment of the heavens, on the ceiling. The names of Djehuty and his parents were also intact in the second chamber; the names were defaced in the previously-known first chamber of the tomb, which had also been looted.

According to a press release from Dr. Zahi Hawass, Secretary General of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, Djehuty’s tomb is only the fifth known decorated burial chamber of the 18th dynasty. An additional unusual feature of the tomb is that its upper chamber is decorated in relief, rather than simply paint. When the excavation is completed, Dr Galán’s team plans to open the site to the public as the carved stoneworks will not be destroyed by tourists’ activities as paint would.

The identification of Djehuty is a complicated one, as a number of officials of the 18th dynasty bore the name, including a general and several governors. The name itself is an alternate transliteration of the name of the Egyptian god usually written in English as Thoth.



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December 6, 2008

Wikinews Shorts: December 6, 2008

Wikinews Shorts: December 6, 2008 – Wikinews, the free news source

Wikinews Shorts: December 6, 2008

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A compilation of brief news reports for Saturday, December 6, 2008.

BMW vehicle sales lower by a quarter

BMW logo sign in Düsseldorf

The global monthly sales of German car maker BMW have fallen by more than a quarter, as consumers are spending less due to the economic slowdown.

According to the company, BMW sales have fallen 26.2% in November from a year ago, whilst sales of its Mini subsidiary, which is based in the United Kingdom, were 20.8% lower. Sales in November for BMW’s luxury Rolls-Royce branch were also down 18.5%.

From the period of January to November, the company sold 1.32 million cars, 1.8 percent fewer than last year, when it sold 1.34 million vehicles.

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NASA delays Mars mission

Artist's conception of the Mars Science Laboratory

The United States space agency NASA has put off the launch of Mars Science Laboratory rover mission. It was scheduled to fly next year, but the mission has been delayed by testing and hardware problems.

According to agency officials, the launch of the rover would be postponed until 2011. The delay could add US$400 million to the cost of the mission, which is likely to be higher than $2 billion.

“We will not lessen our standards for testing the mission’s complex flight systems, so we are choosing the more responsible option of changing the launch date,” said Dough McCuistion, the director NASA’s Mars program.

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Number of Canadian soldier deaths in Afghanistan reaches 100

Flag of the Canadian Forces

Three Canadian soldiers were killed by a bomb in southern Afghanistan Friday, bringing the number of Canadian military casualties in the war to 100.

Canada’s top commander in Afghanistan, Brigadier General Denis Thompson, said that his troops were bringing “peace and stability” to the country. 2,500 Canadian troops are based in southern Afghanistan as part of NATO’s mission to defeat the Taliban.

Canada’s military presence in Afghanistan is due to end in 2011.

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Record jewelery heist in Paris, France

Armed robbers pulled off a record jewelery heist in Paris, France when they on Thursday robbed the Harry Winston store near Avenue des Champs-Élysées.

Four male thieves, two of whom where dressed as women, stole most of the inventory of the high-profile boutique. The loot has been valued at €85 million (US$107 million).

The robbers brandished firearms and forced fifteen customers and staff into a corner of the store. No shots were fired and no one is reported hurt. Police have no immediate leads.

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June 15, 2008

Nepal\’s royal palace now a public museum

Nepal’s royal palace now a public museum

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Narayanhiti Royal Palace has been converted into a museum, signifying the end of Nepal’s 239-year-old monarchy.
Image: Petr Novák.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Narayanhity Royal Palace, home to Nepal’s kings for over a century, was today converted into a public museum, further signifying the country’s recent transition from a monarchy to a republic.

At a brief ceremony, Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala hoisted the national flag where previously only the royal flag had flown, and unveiled a plaque reading “Narayanhity National Museum”. Proclaiming the museum as belonging to the people, Koirala said, “Today the son of a common people has hoisted the country’s flag in this palace. Now Nepal has entered a new era.”

Nepal’s deposed king Gyanendra vacated the palace on Wednesday, after the newly elected Constituent Assembly voted to abolish the 239-year-old monarchy on May 28. He then moved to Nagarjuna Palace, a summer home on the outskirts of the capital Kathmandu, where he is now living as a civilian. However, this home is only a temporary one, and he will soon be asked by the government to leave it as well.

Cquote1.svg The world’s eyes are on Nepal for the unique example it created of proclaiming a republic without any bloodshed. Cquote2.svg

—Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala

Prime Minister Koirala said he was glad the transition occurred peacefully. “The world’s eyes are on Nepal for the unique example it created of proclaiming a republic without any bloodshed,” he said. He also thanked the former king for “understanding the desire and expectation of the people by voluntarily moving out to live an exile-like life.” Koirala also addressed the need to focus on more pressing issues, such as drafting a new constitution and choosing a new federal structure.

The process began around two years ago, when a national uprising forced the king to relinquish the absolute power he had installed and to reinstate the parliament. In late 2007, the parliament agreed to declare Nepal a republic, which was to be implemented after the April 2008 elections. The Maoists, who had been fighting against the monarchy for over 10 years, won the majority of seats, and the monarchy was officially ended in an overwhelming vote.

Despite the ceremony, Narayanhity National Museum is not yet open to the public. Nepali home minister Krishna Prasad Sitaula said, “After proper preparation, the palace will be opened to the public in two to three months.” There are some differing opinions of what to do with the museum; Nepal’s national library wants the museum to include a national archives of important documents, while others want to develop the museum into a major tourist attraction.

Officials say the museum will likely include the king’s crown, sceptre, and royal throne, as well as a 1939 Mercedes-Benz given to Gyanendra’s grandfather by Adolf Hitler. “The car will be a major attraction there,”, said Govinda Kusum, a senior Home Ministry official. King Tribhuvan used to ride the Mercedes when there were no other cars in the country, and it currently lies on the palace grounds, after an engineering college in Kathmandu said they didn’t have enough money to restore it.



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April 1, 2008

Peruvian necklace identified as oldest gold artifact in the Americas

Peruvian necklace identified as oldest gold artifact in the Americas

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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Excavations at Jiskairumoko in 2002.
Image: Nathancraig.

The oldest known gold artifact in the Americas is a necklace from Peru, according to University of Arizona anthropology professor Mark Aldenderfer. The necklace comes from a village in the Jiskairumoko range near Lake Titicaca and consists of gold that had been hammered and rolled into nine cylindrical beads, then strung with turquoise on a wool string.

Radiocarbon dating places the manufacture of the necklace from 2155 to 1936 B.C., which makes this item about 600 years older than the next oldest gold artifact that has been discovered the Americas and the oldest example of metalworking of any kind in the Americas.

Gold metallurgy is almost always associated with agricultural societies. Since the materials used in the necklace are not found in the Titicaca basin, the existence of the necklace implies the region had trade routes and a hereditary elite.

Although this discovery was made in 2004, Professor Alenderfer and his team delayed publication in order to have the gold chemically analyzed and to minimize the risk of looters damaging the site before excavation was complete.



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Wikipedia Learn more about Jiskairumoko and Peruvian Ancient Cultures on Wikipedia.
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