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Elon Musk found not guilty of defaming British cave explorer | Technology


Elon Musk did not defame British cave explorer Vernon Unsworth by calling him a “pedo guy” on Twitter, a Los Angeles jury found Friday.

The case has pitted a 64-year-old financial adviser earning a salary of about £25,000 ($33,000) against one of the richest and most famous men in the world. The dispute stems from the Tesla and SpaceX chief’s ancillary involvement in the Tham Luang cave rescue in June and July 2018, which saw 12 young football players and their coach successfully extracted from a flooded cave system by a team of British cave divers.

On 13 July 2018, after the successful completion of the rescue, Unsworth said in an interview with CNN that the rescue pod Musk had delivered to the cave site was a “PR stunt”, adding that he should “stick his submarine where it hurts”. A video clip of the interview went viral, drawing the ire of Musk.

The billionaire entrepreneur responded in a series of tweets on 15 July, suggesting that Unsworth’s presence in Thailand was “sus[picious]” and calling him “pedo guy”.

Musk eventually deleted the tweets and apologized to Unsworth.

The jury was tasked with determining whether a reasonable person would understand the tweets to mean that Musk was calling Unsworth a pedophile.

Musk’s attorneys argued that the tweet was not a statement of fact, but an insult, which is considered protected speech. They also attempted to show that Unsworth’s reputation had not been seriously damaged.

Unsworth’s attorneys introduced evidence of the broad dissemination of Musk’s tweets, which were reported in 490 English-language articles on 361 websites in 33 countries.

They also introduced evidence of Musk’s behavior after the 15 July tweets, including his hiring of a private investigator to seek proof of Unsworth’s “nefarious behaviour”.



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General election: Council tax more likely to go up under Tories than Labour, IFS suggests – live news


Lib Dem leader said leaders should be ‘very careful’ about relationship with US president, ahead of his arrival for Nato

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10.51am GMT

The Institute for Fiscal Studies has published a briefing on the Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat plans for local government funding. This is not an issue that has attracted much attention in the campaign so far, but it deserves some focus because councils provide vital services – and the gap between what’s on offer from the Tories and Labour is vast.

Although the Conservatives claim to be a low-tax party, under their plans it is more likely that council tax would have to rise, the IFS suggests.

The money allocated by the Conservatives would not be sufficient to meet rising costs and demands over the next parliament even if council tax were increased by 4% a year, necessitating a further retrenchment in services or unfunded top-ups to the plans set out.

The Labour party has allocated more than enough money to meet rising costs and demands, allowing increases in service provision and quality, although not enough to restore them to 2010 levels. That is true even if council tax were frozen – although Labour has no plans for such a freeze.

10.24am GMT

In her BBC phone-in Nicola Sturgeon said she would like to see the SNP represented in the talks with the EU that would take place if Labour formed a government and negotiated a new Brexit deal. This issue came up in response to a question about fishing. Asked if the SNP would want to have someone negotiating alongside Labour on this, Sturgeon replied:

I want to make sure, in any of these discussions, the interests of the fishing industry were absolutely paramount, and that’s a commitment I would make on behalf of the SNP.

I think Scotland should be at the table in any of these discussions, all of the time, rather than being shut out by Westminster. And fishing is an example of the particular interests we have that mean that we should be much more represented.

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Anger at antiquaries charity after sex abuser wins members’ vote | Society


A vote allowing a sex abuser to remain a fellow at a prestigious educational society has provoked a fierce internal backlash and demands for the organisation’s reform.

Scores of fellows at the Society of Antiquaries of London, a charity that promotes the study of the past, are up in arms about the vote, which has allowed Hubert Chesshyre to continue as a fellow.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) heard evidence that Chesshyre, an expert on heraldry and genealogy who held a number of senior positions within the royal household, was found to have sexually abused a teenage chorister over the course of three years in the 1990s.

The 2015 finding was made following a “trial of the facts”, which is held when someone is considered unable to plead due to their poor mental and physical health. As a result, despite being found to have committed the abuse, Chesshyre – who is said to have dementia – was given an absolute discharge.

The finding saw fellows at the society, one of Britain’s oldest educational institutions, granted a royal charter in 1751, table a resolution demanding his removal. But a majority of fellows who voted backed Chesshyre, a former president of its elite dining club, the Cocked Hat Club.

In an open letter published on Sunday in the Observer, many fellows expressed outrage at the decision.

Pledging their support to the victim, they signalled their “determination to reform the organisation so that it reflects the values and behaviours that should be expected from any public organisation or individual”.

They add: “The voting arrangements were such that only around 100 of the society’s 3,000 fellows were able to attend the vote, which due to the existing governance structures of the society only allowed voting in person on a weekday afternoon. This disenfranchised a large number of fellows unable to attend at such a time.

“The 76 fellows who voted against the proposal to remove Mr Chesshyre’s fellowship do not represent us, and do not represent the values and behaviours of any organisation we are willing to be members of.”

Paul Drury, the society’s president, denied that the vote showed it had “stood by” Chesshyre. “We are committed to acting in ways which are consistent with our status as an educational charity operating for the public benefit, and as an institution which confers public recognition of the achievements of its fellows,” he said in a statement on its website.

“We are therefore actively working on the reform of our statutes, to enable swift action to remove fellowship from those who do not live up to the society’s expectations of integrity and good character.”

Drury added: “The society unreservedly apologises to the victim for any hurt the defeat may have caused.”



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Mum had her eyes fused shut after hair dye left her face looking ‘like an alien’


A mum-of-two nearly died from serious allergic reaction triggered by a £50 hair dye product.

Shannon Thurston, of Essex, ended up in hospital with swollen forehead ‘like an alien’ and breathing difficulties after failing to carry out a patch test.

The swelling forced her eyes fused shut and her airways started to close up.

Now, the 24-year-old is determined to raise awareness of the dangers of PPD (paraphenylenediamine), a common chemical used in many hair dyes.

The student social worker says: “I feel so stupid for not realising that your body can develop an allergy to ingredients even after being exposed to them before.

The reaction left her eyes fused shut and her airways started to close up

“I’m lucky I was treated in time. It almost killed me.”

Shannon has been dyeing her hair since 2007, when she was 12.

She’s coloured her natural light brown hair every shade from pink to bleach blonde, to chocolate brown.

She says: “I loved changing my style. My aunt Sharon, 47, was a hairdresser and she’d apply the box dye to my hair.

“I always did a patch test when I used a new box and I coloured my hair every two months.”

But in February 2012, when Shannon was 16, she wanted to dye her hair a dark chocolate brown.

It happened after she used a hair dye product

She says: “I’d used the box before, it was a Nice ‘n’ Easy Perfect 10 dye. As I’d used it before, I told Sharon not to bother with a patch test.

“When Sharon applied the dye as usual, my head felt itchy, but I ignored it.

“I loved my new dark-brown hair, but the next day, I had red bumps along the bottom of my neck. Again, I wasn’t worried as I figured it was just irritation.”

The following day, Shannon woke up and her left eye was badly swollen.

Throughout the day, it worsened and her mum, Kay, 46, who works in sales, took her to A&E at Basildon Hospital.

By the time the pair arrived, Shannon’s eye was completely shut and her airways were beginning to close.

Doctors revealed she’d had an allergic reaction to PPD, and they gave her a nebuliser to open her airways.

They also administered steroids and antihistamines to control the swelling.

Shannon before the allergic reaction

By this point, even her forehead was swollen.

Shannon says: “It was terrifying – l looked like an alien. The next morning, both my eyes and neck were swollen.

“My scalp was burning – it felt like it was on fire.

“I was in hospital for around four days, as doctors couldn’t get the swelling under control. Nurses tried to wash out the dye from my hair.

“They even suggested shaving my hair off to stop the reaction, but I begged them not to. I couldn’t bear the thought of having no hair.

“I was struggling to breathe and doctors told me that if I’d have waited to go to hospital, I could have died.

“My forehead looked like a water balloon and my eyes were completely shut, so I was temporarily blind.”

Shannon was in the hospital for four days

Eventually Shannon was discharged from hospital, but her face remained swollen for four weeks.

She also took steroids for a further three months.

She says: “Classmates pointed at my face and jeered at me.

“They even took pictures of me, it was so humiliating, but I was pleased to have survived my ordeal.

“I’ve never dyed my hair since then. It’s not worth it.

“I only get highlights now and make sure I get a patch test every time. My aunt felt so guilty, but I reassured her that it wasn’t her fault.

“Always do a patch test and leave it on for the recommended 48 hours. It could save your life.”

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A spokesperson for Clairol said: “The safety of the people who use our products is our first and most important priority, so we’re very concerned to hear about Ms Thurston’s experience with Nice’n Easy.

“It is imperative patch tests are conducted at least 48 hours before colouring, details of how to perform this test are included with each of our products to help minimise risk to consumers.

“Allergic reactions are very rare and hair colourants are extensively researched to ensure they are safe when used as directed.”





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General election: Corbyn responds to chief rabbi by saying he won’t tolerate antisemitism ‘in any form’ – live news | Politics














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Corbyn says antisemitism ‘will not be tolerated in any form whatsoever’ under Labour

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Corbyn speaks at launch of Labour’s race and faith manifesto

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Chief rabbi’s attack on Corbyn over antisemitism ‘unjustified and unfair’, says Lord Dubs

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Johnson rules out backing Brexit or independence referendums in hung parliament as price of power





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Star City ‘fight’: Security storm cinema after mass brawl ‘at Blue Story film’


Terrified children queuing to see Frozen 2 were shocked when security rushed into the cinema after a mass brawl.

The violence is suspected to have begun during a screening of UK gangster film Blue Story at Star City in Birmingham.

Rachel Allison tweeted: “Just came to see the new Blue Story film, standing in line for snacks when a fight breaks out behind my brother – worst thing is, it’s young girls fighting.

“Police brought batons, tasers and dogs out. Star city now closed.”

One reveller said more than 100 police and 50 vehicles closed down the entertainment complex at about 6pm on Saturday night.

It is thought some 60 to 70 people were involved in a fight at the multiplex venue.

Were you at Star City this evening? Email [email protected]

Police rushed to the scene

One witness told Mirror Online: “That’s probably one of the scariest moments of my life. Me and my sister were in a queue to watch frozen, loads of little kids there, all dressed up and everything, then these girls jumped on another girl and loads of these kids just started fighting.

“Armed police came with Tasers. All the people that were fighting run off into the cinema. There’s about 15 to 20 police cars. I’m shaking.

“The police were very aggressive there was lots of little kids there. My sister is 11 and they was pointing the Tasers in our face.”

Another witness said: “This is the most horrifying thing I’ve been involved in I’m scared and I’m 45 little girls dressed in frozen dresses crying and screaming appalling behaviour all over a gangster film set in London.”

The Vue Cinema in Star City was evacuated

Choleigh Mcguire, who was at the complex, told Mirror Online: “I have never seen police so aggressive. Everyone dressed up. They were all crying.

“It was a group of girls started on this one girl. Someone separated it at first.”

People are reporting that around ‘20 police cars’ dashed to Star City to deal with the suspected riot, which is thought to have broken out around 6pm today.

Mr Khan, manager of Pepe’s Restaurant at Star City told said: “I heard shouting and screaming outside the restaurant. I understand a big fight started in the cinema.

One guest filmed security rushing to try and control the violence

“There were so many people running past the restaurant, I’d say around 60 to 70 were involved.

“The police escorted everyone out.

“We’ve heard that the cinema has had to empty the screens and are not letting anyone else in. I guess people who have bought tickets will get a refund.

Police are yet to comment on the disturbance

“Our restaurant is still open, as is the restaurant next door.”

The police are yet to comment on the disturbance.

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Police are redirecting people away from the area and it’s having a knock-on effect on motorists on Watson Road and all roads surrounding the entertainment complex.

People are being advised to steer clear of the area and try to find alternative routes.





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