UK news

Jailed fraudster told to hand over £40,000

By Lynda Roughley, April 29, 2009

A Salford businessman involved in a huge international “advance fee” fraud has been ordered to hand over more than £40,000 cash.

A Liverpool Crown Court judge ruled that Michael Rashman had benefited by £1,542,312 but found that his realisable assets were only £42,5000.

Rashman, 55, who is currently serving a sentence of four years and nine months, was ordered by Judge Gerald Clifton to hand over the cash by September next year or he will have to serve an extra three and a half years in prison.


Hazel Blears in cross-party moves against BNP

By Bernard Josephs, April 29, 2009

A Cabinet minister is shortly to hold talks with her Conservative opposite number to discuss how mainstream parties should combat the threat posed by the far right at next month’s European elections.

Communities Secretary Hazel Blears will be discussing with her Conservative counterpart Caroline Spelman growing fears that the British National Party are on course to win at least one seat. The European elections will be held on June 4.

She revealed details of the meeting at a rally by the Jewish Labour Movement, aimed at mobilising efforts to halt the BNP’s political bandwagon.


Hitler's paintings sale

April 29, 2009

A collection of 13 paintings by Adolf Hitler sold at auction last week for more than £95,000, far more than expected. They were painted between 1908 and 1914, when Hitler had ambitions to become a full-time artist.


German art fetches £7,000

April 29, 2009

Three pieces of artwork by a German-Jewish émigrée, Dodo Burgner, who fled Nazi Germany for north London, have been sold at auction by Salisbury-based Woolley and Wallis for more than £7,000.


Dear Gordon, here’s £4m to spend on students

By Simon Rocker, April 29, 2009

Naim Dangoor, the nonagenarian Iraqi-born philanthropist, has offered a donation of £4 million to British universities — in the hope that the government matches the gift.

Dr Dangoor, who gave £1million four years ago to fund a thousand £1,000 scholarships at UK universities, put his idea in a letter to Prime Minister Gordon Brown last week.

He explained that he had heard on radio and television that young people were being told that “because of the credit crunch, they can’t obtain new jobs and they can’t go to university. I want to make life easier for them”.


Teen convicted of station attack

By Marcus Dysch, April 29, 2009

A teenager has admitted punching a Jewish schoolboy in the face during an unprovoked attack.

The 15-year-old victim, from Stanmore, Middlesex, was leaving Kingsbury Tube station in January when he was approached by three boys.

He tried to walk away but one of the youths, who cannot be named for legal reasons, followed him and asked: “What you saying about me?” and then punched him in the face.

The attacker had bullied his victim on two previous occasions, including during a football match when he made antisemitic comments.


Polish squatters hijack the ‘shul’ pub

By Marcus Dysch, April 29, 2009

A group of Polish squatters have taken control of a pub bought by a Jewish community group which hoped to turn it into a synagogue.

The Swan, in Stamford Hill, has been empty since it closed in January when it was sold to members of the Bobov community.

It is thought the squatters entered the building a number of weeks ago and four people are now living there permanently.

The pub’s front door displays a notice from the group quoting the Criminal Law Act, which is widely used by illegal tenants to make it a crime in most circumstances for a landlord to force entry.


Firm gives shuls chance to go green

By Leon Symons, April 29, 2009

Someone has finally found a use for all the hot air generated in synagogues.

The British arm of German company Stiebel-Eltron, which specialises in renewable energy, is offering a free “energy efficiency” survey of any synagogue and adjoining hall in the country.

The survey will examine the heat loss and demands of the building and then make recommendations about how to cut costs and energy bills. It will also point up the incentives for the synagogue to go “green”.


Orthodox family told to remove their loft

By James Brewster, April 29, 2009

A strictly Orthodox family may be forced to tear down an extension to their Hackney home after a High Court judge rejected their bid to save it.

Matilda Schlesinger argues that the large loft extension at Lynmouth Road, Stamford Hill, is essential to provide enough room for her family, which includes 10 children, ranging in age from two to 18.

But Hackney Council and a planning inspector both rejected the application for the extension — which is already built — on the grounds that it is out of character with the area and the house itself.


Israeli in police death crash case

By Leon Symons, April 27, 2009

An Israeli man living in Golders Green has been charged with death by dangerous driving after being involved in an accident with an off-duty motor-cycle policeman.

Liron Shnaider, 26, of Stanley House, Finchley Road, appeared at Brent Magistrates’ Court at the week-end. He has also been charged with failing to stop at the scene of a personal injury. He was remanded in custody and is due to appear at Wood Green Crown Court today (Friday May 1).