Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 27 April 2023


Gambling firms ‘target the poor’

The government has accused gambling companies of exploiting addicts and disproportionately affecting poorer communities. Writing in The Times, Lucy Frazer, the culture secretary, said that gambling apps on mobile phones have for some become “a trapdoor to despair and isolation”. Later, the government will release its gambling white paper which includes plans for a levy on gambling companies and affordability checks to help problem gamblers. However, senior Conservative MPs, including former leader Iain Duncan Smith, have raised concerns that after lengthy delays the government has “copped out”.

The sports betting epidemic: who picks up the tab?


Minister accused of ‘bullying’

New allegations of “bullying” have been made against a government minister as officials from the Department of Health “raised concerns” about Steve Barclay’s conduct towards civil servants. According to The Guardian, civil servants have informally complained to Chris Wormald, the department’s permanent secretary, alleging “bullying” and other “bad behaviour” by Barclay towards his staff since he joined the Whitehall department last summer. Barclay’s allies deny the alleged conduct. The news comes after Dominic Raab stepped down amid claims of bullying.

Why can’t Westminster solve its bullying problem?


Trump accuser takes the stand

A former columnist suing Donald Trump over an alleged rape nearly 30 years ago has testified in court. The writer, E. Jean Carroll, told the New York civil rape and defamation trial she had been unable to have a romantic life since the alleged assault in a Manhattan department store in 1996. “When I wrote about it, he lied and said it didn’t happen,” she said. “He lied and shattered my reputation, and I’m here to try and get my life back.” The former US president has denied the allegation, saying Carroll is not his “type”.

Donald Trump’s biggest legal woes


Fugees rapper guilty of conspiracy

A rapper has been found guilty of 10 criminal counts related to an international conspiracy to help China influence US government policy. Pras Michel, a Grammy-winning artist and former member of the Fugees, was accused of helping Malaysian businessman Jho Low and the Chinese government gain access to US officials, including former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump. After being convicted of conspiracy to defraud the US, witness tampering and acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government, he faces up to 20 years in prison.


Arrests after Brentford ‘murder’

Detectives have arrested 10 people on suspicion of murder after a man was fatally stabbed in London. Police said the man was found in the street with serious injuries in Brentwick Gardens, Brentford, yesterday morning and died at the scene. Detective Superintendent Figo Forouzan said: “I want to reassure the Hounslow residents that we have commenced a thorough investigation with the support of our homicide investigation team to ensure those responsible are brought to justice.”


Morgan ‘knew about hacking’

Piers Morgan “knew about, encouraged and concealed” illegal targeting of Diana, Princess of Wales when he was editor of the News of the World, Prince Harry has claimed. The Duke of Sussex alleges that his mother’s private text messages and phone calls were obtained by journalists before she died, with the information used as the basis for multiple stories in The Sun and the News of the World. Morgan, who has always denied any direct knowledge of phone hacking, has spoken out bitterly against Harry and his wife Meghan for several years.

Prince Harry’s privacy case against Associated Newspapers


Braverman denies Sudan routes

The Home Secretary has ruled out safe and legal routes for Sudanese asylum seekers. Suella Braverman, who said she had “no plans” to introduce the routes, was reprimanded by the UN for claiming Sundanese people should contact it because it is “the right mechanism by which people should apply if they do want to seek asylum in the UK”. The UN said there was no mechanism to claim asylum in the UK through it and Braverman’s stance meant any Sudanese people seeking to come to the UK would have to consider illegal routes.

How can UK fix ‘broken’ asylum system?


Church speaks up for singletons

The Church of England has called for its followers to “honour singleness” because Jesus was single too. “Jesus’s own singleness should ensure that the Church of England celebrates singleness and does not regard it as lesser than living in a couple relationship,” said the Archbishops’ Commission on Families and Households in a report. The study also said that “in the gospels we find single-person households, friendship groups, siblings living together, people who have been married several times, cohabiting couples, multigenerational households, as well as parents and their children”.

Pros and cons of marriage


Postmaster victims die before justice

Dozens of former sub-postmasters and mistresses who were wrongly accused of stealing money have died before the end of the public inquiry. As compensation talks “drag on”, four postmasters have taken their own lives and three other victims of the computer accounting error scandal died before they could be cleared. A further 52 who had applied for compensation have also passed away. Thousands of Post Office owner-managers were accused of taking money from their tills after a glitch in the Horizon IT system, in what has been described as the biggest miscarriage of justice in British history.

What next in the Post Office scandal?


Queen ‘knew Andrew interview was bad’

Queen Elizabeth II realised how catastrophic the Duke of York’s Newsnight interview had been as soon as she read the transcript, a new documentary claims. Emily Maitlis, who conducted the interview, said the Duke had been “very jolly” when the cameras stopped rolling and thought it had been a success. However, when the late Queen read the transcript hours before it was broadcast, she is said to have summoned her son to a meeting. Andrew “received a tap on the shoulder” from his security detail, who told him: “Sir, you might have to come with us.”



The Week Independent Schools Guide, Autumn/Winter 2023


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