Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Thursday 21 Jun 2012

1

MOODY’S POISED TO DOWNGRADE UK BANKS

The rating agency Moody’s is expected to downgrade some British banks as part of a wider review of world banks. It is thought that Barclays, HSBC and Royal Bank of Scotland are facing a cut in their ratings by as much as two notches, reflecting the continued impact of the eurozone crisis on the global banking system.

2

CARR ADMITS 'TERRIBLE ERROR' OVER TAX

Comedian Jimmy Carr today apologised on Twitter for avoiding tax by using a Jersey-based scheme called K2, which was described by David Cameron as "morally wrong" and "very dodgy". The comic, who paid as little as 1% tax on his earnings, admitted getting involved in the scheme was "a terrible error of judgement".

3

DOCTORS CHANGE MINDS OVER STRIKE

Doctors were reported to be changing their minds in droves over their first strike action in 40 years which began last night, with fewer than a third of the 104,000 who are members of the British Medical Association expected to down stethoscopes. Doctors are upset over changes to pensions, but there has been a public backlash because the profession is seen as well paid.

4

EGYPTIAN JUNTA SUSPENDS ELECTION

The results of Egypt's presidential election have been put on hold by the election authorities, who are controlled by the ruling military junta, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, who claim to need more time to look into complaints by the candidates. Protestors have filled Cairo's Tahrir Square, supporting the Muslim Brotherhood candidate who is believed to have won.

5

JURY BACKS FATHER WHO KILLED RAPIST

A father in Texas who killed a man he caught in the act of raping his five-year-old daughter will not be charged following the verdict of an investigating Grand Jury that he was entitled to use deadly force to protect his child, prosecutors in Lavaca County revealed yesterday. A neighbour alerted him to the child's abduction, and he followed her screams.

6

CLIVE JAMES 'NEAR THE END'

Broadcaster Clive James has admitted he is “getting near the end” after several years of serious illness. The Australian star, best known for his hit show Clive James On Television, was diagnosed with leukaemia, kidney failure and lung disease in 2010. James was speaking on a Radio 4 show to be broadcast on Sunday

7

DR WHO ACTOR BEATEN TO DEATH

Doctor Who actor Gary Suller was allegedly tied up and beaten to death by a jealous heroin addict who was in love with the same "working girl" as him, Cardiff Crown Court heard at a murder trial this week. Barry Bowyer, 38, is accused of murdering Suller after they both fell in love with a woman who worked in a massage parlour.

8

ECCLESTONE FACES BRIBERY ALLEGATIONS

Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone was yesterday facing renewed allegations over a £28 million "bribe". German banker Gerhard Gribkowsky, who is on trial in Munich, said reports that Ecclestone took the money during the sale of a stake in F1 are "essentially true". Ecclestone denies wrongdoing and accused Gribkowsky of "saving himself".

9

SYRIA PILOT DEFECTS TO JORDAN

A Syrian fighter plane has landed at a military air base in the north of Jordan and the pilot has asked for asylum. Jordan's Minister of Information Samih al-Maaytah said the pilot of the MiG 21 jet was being debriefed. Syrian state TV said a fighter plane had gone missing during a training mission.

10

HOT TICKET – WORD PERFECT GREAT GATSBY

New York theatre ensemble Elevator Repair Service are performing Gatz, a staged reading of F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic novel The Great Gatsby, at the Noel Coward Theatre, West End. The eight-hour word-for-word re-enactment is set in an office, where reality merges with fiction. "A lyrical marathon," says the Evening Standard. Until 15 July.

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