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Grenfell Tower fire: ‘We are truly sorry we couldn’t save everyone’s life that night’

London Fire Brigade chief Dany Cotton has welcomed a critical report on the Grenfell tower fire, but said that the building “failed spectacularly”.

Inquiry chairman Sir Martin Moore-Bick said the absence of a plan to evacuate the tower was a “major omission” by the LFB and more lives could have been saved had the “stay-put” policy been abandoned sooner.

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Josh Hanson murder: Britain’s ‘most wanted’ man jailed for life

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Media captionDet Ch Insp Noel McHugh explains how he managed to track Shane O’Brien

A killer once dubbed one of Britain’s most wanted fugitives has been jailed for at least 26 years.

Shane O’Brien, 31, evaded police for three-and-a-half years after he slashed Josh Hanson’s neck in Hillingdon, west London, on 11 October 2015.

He fled the UK, changed his appearance and moved around Europe before his extradition from Romania in April.

O’Brien, who jurors found guilty of murder last month, was given a life sentence at the Old Bailey.

CCTV released during the trial showed 21-year-old Mr Hanson clutching his neck and stumbling as blood poured out of a 37cm (14.5in) wound.

‘Abrupt, vicious, violent’

After the killing, jurors heard, O’Brien was seen “calmly” walking out of the bar.

He made his way to Ashford, Kent, where a contact had chartered a private four-seater plane to take him to the Netherlands.

The killer grew a beard and long hair and changed his tattoos as he travelled through countries including Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic, the court was told.

In 2017, the father-of-two was arrested over a dispute in a Prague nightclub but gave police a false name and fled while on bail.

The trial heard the 31-year-old was added to Europol and Interpol’s most wanted lists but still managed to lay low.

However, he was eventually caught by Romanian authorities after he contacted Scotland Yard to arrange a possible meeting, the jury heard.

Sentencing the father-of-two, Judge Nigel Lickley QC called it “a grotesque, violent and totally unnecessary attack on an innocent man”.

“The reason why you behaved in such a way may never be fully explained. You, however, know the reason,” he said.

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Metropolitan Police

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Josh Hanson was pronounced dead at the RE bar in Hillingdon

In a victim impact statement, Mr Hanson’s mother Tracey described her son as being “considerate, kind and generous”.

“He was taken from us in the most horrific way possible – suddenly, abruptly, viciously and violently,” she said.

The victim’s sister, Brooke, said the 21-year-old “was not just my brother, he was my best friend”, and described his “infectious smile” and “magical presence”.

She told the court she had suffered from anxiety and post-traumatic stress since the killing and found herself always wondering if she could have protected him from the “evil” that took him away.

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EPA

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The 31-year-old was eventually detained by authorities in Romania

During the trial, O’Brien had claimed he felt threatened by Mr Hanson’s “very aggressive body language” and had only meant to scare his victim.

There were angry shouts of “coward” from the public gallery as he was led away from the dock.

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Baptista Adjei stabbing: Second murder charge over Stratford killing

Baptista Adjei

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Met Police

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Baptista Adjei lived in North Woolwich but was stabbed to death near the Stratford Shopping Centre

A 15-year-old has been charged with conspiring to murder a schoolboy who was stabbed to death in the street.

Baptista Adjei, also 15, from North Woolwich, was attacked on Stratford Broadway, east London, on 10 October.

Police have charged another 15-year-old boy with murder, GBH and two counts of possessing an offensive weapon.

The latest suspect will appear at Stratford Youth Court later, Scotland Yard said.

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Finsbury Park flood: Families stay in temporary housing

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Media captionFinsbury Park flooding

Some 50 households had to stay in emergency accommodation overnight after a burst water main flooded homes in north London.

About 250 properties including two schools were affected after a 36-inch (91cm) water pipe fractured in Finsbury Park before 08:00 BST on Tuesday.

One man was rescued from a basement while others had to be led to safety.

Thames Water said a temporary fix had been put in place and all flood water had been pumped away.

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Parkwood Primary school has reopened after being shut as a result of the flood

The water main burst at the junction of Queens Drive and Princess Crescent causing an area measuring about 600m x 200m (1,900ft x 650ft) to be flooded to a depth of about 1m (3ft).

About 12 fire engines and 80 firefighters were deployed to help rescue people and pump water away, while postcode areas N1, N4, N5, N7 and N19 were left with no water or low water pressure.

Tanja Schnitzer, who lives in a basement flat on Queens Drive, said rooms in the property had filled up with water “within half an hour from floor to ceiling”.

“It’s devastating. We’ve pretty much lost everything,” she said.

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Residents of a basement flat escaped with their possession to the top floor of their property

Water supplies for most properties in the area have been restored but Thames Water said air locks in the system meant some residents were still experiencing problems.

A spokesman for the firm said bottled water and plumbers were on standby in case of issues while engineers would finish fixing the mains during the day.

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Thames Water said engineers would work throughout the day to repair the broken mains pipe

Woodberry Down Primary School remains shut but Parkwood Primary School has reopened.

Queens Drive, between Brownswood Road and Seven Sisters Road, has been closed to traffic.

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Banksy opens ‘pop-up’ shop in Croydon

Banksy has opened a “pop-up” shop in south London featuring the stab vest he designed for Stormzy’s headline act at the Glastonbury Festival.

A Tony the Tiger rug and a cradle surrounded by CCTV cameras are also on show as part of the venture, at a disused retail outlet in Croydon.

“I’m opening a shop today,” the artist said on Instagram. “Although the doors don’t actually open.”

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Hillingdon Tube stabbing: Tashan Daniel ‘was going to Arsenal match’

Hillingdon station

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Anne Robinson/Twitter/PA Wire

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Emergency services were called to Hillingdon Underground station at shortly before 16:00 BST

A man stabbed to death at a London Underground station was an Arsenal fan on his way to a match, the BBC has been told.

Tashan Daniel, 20, was was killed in an “unprovoked attack” on the platform at Hillingdon station on Tuesday.

He had been heading to the Emirates Stadium to see the Gunners face Nottingham Forest in the third round of the Carabao Cup, a source said.

It is the third murder investigation on the Tube network this year.

No arrests have been made over the attack, which Det Supt Gary Richardson described as “a shocking act of violence”.

He said the British Transport Police (BTP) investigation was in its “early stages”.

“We believe a group of young men were involved in an altercation on the platform before one of the men received a fatal stab wound,” he said.

Police and paramedics were called to the station in west London at 15:57 BST.

An air ambulance was also sent to Hillingdon, but Mr Daniel was pronounced dead at the scene.

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Mike Quinn/Geograph

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The man was pronounced dead at the scene at Hillingdon station

Danielle Foster, who was driving past Hillingdon station at the time of the stabbing, said upon “hearing so many sirens, I knew something terrible had happened”.

“Lots of people were being turned away from the station as it had been closed,” she said, adding: “Then the police helicopter began circling the scene.”

Hillingdon station was closed by Transport for London (TfL) while police searched the area.

The station was closed for the rest of Tuesday evening and reopened at 05:45 this morning.

So far in 2019 more than 100 murder investigations have been launched across London by the Metropolitan Police and BTP.

The other two murder investigations carried out by BTP happened after killings at Queensbury Tube station in March and Elephant and Castle Tube station at the start of this month.

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England weather: Heavy rain causes floods and travel chaos

Boy cycles through flood water near stranded car

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PA Media

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Some commuters in Birmingham were undeterred by the flooding

Heavy rain is causing travel problems and flash flooding across England.

Twelve flood warnings and 39 flood alerts have been put in place by the Environment Agency.

The Met Office has a yellow rain warning covering most of the country in force until 23:00 BST.

Floods have been reported on roads in Southampton, Birmingham and Liverpool, while Transport for London (TfL) said a number of roads across the capital were also affected by flooding.

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Colin Lee

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Flooding has also hit roads in Southampton

A flood warning is in place in Crawley for the Ifield Brook and River Mole at Ifield and the River Mole at Lowfield Heath.

Flooding is also expected on the upper Frome, between Maiden Newton and Dorchester, in Dorset and on the Grace Dieu Brook, between Whitwick and Thringstone, in Leicestershire.

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Media captionHeavy rain brings flash flooding to Wellingborough

Edwinstone and Ollerton in Nottinghamshire are also at risk of flooding from the River Maun, as are areas around the Whinney Brook at Maghull in Sefton, Merseyside, and Wash Dike in Pontefract, West Yorkshire.

Warnings are also in place for the River Tame at Hams Hall, Water Orton, Whitacre and Nether Whitacre in Warwickshire, and the Blackburn and Charlton Brooks, between Chapeltown and North Ecclesfield, near Sheffield.

National Rail warned of major disruption between Birmingham Snow Hill and Stourbridge earlier due to a tree blocking the line.

Southampton City Centre has seen problems with several cars having broken down in water on Millbrook Road West.

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Colin Lee

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The flooding in Southampton caused major problems for commuters

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PA Media

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The torrential downpours saturated pedestrians in Birmingham city centre

Motorists have also been advised to avoid the road between Waterhouse Lane and Paynes Road.

Roads have flooded in the Longbridge area of Birmingham, while Mersey Fire and Rescue Service reported vehicles trapped in floodwater in the Queens Drive and West Derby areas of Liverpool.

A service spokesman urged drivers to “please take extra care”, adding: “Slow down, increase your distances, switch your lights on and please don’t drive into floodwater.”

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Media captionHeavy rain causes flooding in Liverpool (Credit: Liverpool Echo)

About 2in (49.6mm) of rain fell in the six hours before 09:00 at Boscombe Down in Wiltshire, according to the Met Office.

Spokesman Grahame Madge said it was a “significant” amount of rain.

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PA Media

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A road has been partially flooded at Colnbrook in West London

He said the band of rain was “transient” and, having started in the South West, has moved to the Midlands before hitting the North later in the day.

He said some other areas could expect to see the same amount of rain as Boscombe Down.

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Clare McIntyre

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Roads were also affected in Liverpool

In Harrogate, the fan zone for the UCI Road World Championships has been closed due to the “heavy rain”.

The cycling action can still be seen on West Park and Parliament Street, organisers said.

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@kevinmcgphoto

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A road has flooded in the Longbridge area of Birmingham



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