Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 26 June 2021
The Week’s daily digest of the news agenda, published at 8am
Hancock could go if anger continues
Cabinet ministers and other Tory MPs think Matt Hancock should be sacked if public anger over his breach of Covid rules matches the backlash against Dominic Cummings’ trip to Barnard Castle. A ministerial source told the Daily Telegraph that while Boris Johnson was “standing by” Hancock at present, “it could unravel pretty quickly” if pressure continues. The health secretary has apologised after pictures emerged of him kissing an aide.
Guards ‘harassed women’ in quarantine
Four women who stayed in quarantine hotels have told the BBC they were sexually harassed by guards working for security company G4S. After private security companies were hired by the government to ensure hotel guests observe quarantine rules, one woman says a guard mimed having sex while they were alone in a lift. Another says a guard asked for a “hug”. Travellers are obliged to quarantine in a hotel after returning from countries on the UK’s red list.
Trump warned he faces charges
The Manhattan district attorney has told lawyers for Donald Trump that criminal charges against the Trump Organization are possible. The New York Times says potential charges against the former president’s company are related to “fringe benefits the company awarded a top executive”. Ron Fischetti, a lawyer for the Trump family, called the likely charges “completely outrageous”. Any charges would be a blow to Trump’s ambitions of returning to frontline politics.
‘Tornado’ hits east London
A suspected tornado has caused havoc in east London. The Metropolitan police has confirmed that it had received reports of a tornado. It said there has been damage to roofs, electrical equipment, street furniture and vehicles as a result of a “weather-related incident”. The Met Office said the incident is likely to have been a tornado. No injuries have been reported.
Probe into fraudulent reviews
Amazon and Google are facing an investigation over their failure to tackle fake product reviews which may have misled millions of people. The Competition and Markets Authority says the firms have failed to prevent an avalanche of fraudulent reviews. According to a 2019 analysis by Fakespot, as many as 60% of reviews on some popular Amazon products are false or unreliable.
US releases UFO report
The US intelligence community has released its long-awaited report into UFOS. Although the publication of the unclassified document marks one of the first times the US government has openly acknowledged that aerial sightings by Navy pilots and others are worthy of legitimate scrutiny, The Guardian says the mystery of UFOs seen in American skies is likely to continue because the US offers “no explanation” for the trend.
Prince Philip coin announced
A £5 coin commemorating the life of the Duke of Edinburgh has been unveiled. The limited-edition coin features a portrait of Prince Philip and is being launched as part of Armed Forces Day. Chancellor Rishi Sunak said it was a “fitting tribute” to the royal consort, who “moved and inspired so many people around the world with his decades of service” to the nation and the Queen. It will be available from the Royal Mint’s website.
Chauvin sentenced to 22 years
Derek Chauvin, the former police officer convicted of murdering African-American man George Floyd in Minneapolis in May 2020, has been sentenced to 22 years and six months in jail. The judge told him the sentence was determined “on your abuse of a position of trust and authority, and also the particular cruelty shown” to Floyd. Chauvin spoke briefly before the sentence was imposed, offering his “condolences to the Floyd family”.
Warning over Corrie episodes
Archive episodes of Coronation Street have been given content warnings for language “from a bygone era”. In once case, viewers of BritBox are told that an episode includes language “which some viewers may find offensive”. It includes a character talking about food and expressing his liking for “foreign tack”, such as “French, Eyetie, Kraut”. After ordering in a Chinese restaurant, he calls the waiter a “son of the Orient”.
FA to extend Southgate deal
The FA is planning formal talks to extend Gareth Southgate’s contract even if England lose their last-16 tie against Germany in the European Championships. Chief executive Mark Bullingham said the coach had his “unwavering support” no matter how the Three Lions fared in the remainder of the tournament because he is doing a “brilliant job”. Southgate, who was appointed manager on a full-time basis in 2016, has a deal until the World Cup in Qatar in December 2022.