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Tag Archives: life

Charles Bronson refused parole at HMP Wakefield

Charles Bronson in 1992Image copyright PA
Image caption Charles Bronson in 1992 – that year, he spent 53 days outside prison before being arrested again

One of the UK‘s most violent prisoners, Charles Bronson has been refused parole.

A board ruled that Bronson, now called Charles Salvador, should not be released from HMP Wakefield or moved to an open prison.

The 63-year-old is serving a life sentence for robbery and kidnap and has gained notoriety for a history of violence inside and outside jail.

He must now wait another two years for a review of his case.

Bronson’s bride: ‘We’re very similar creatures’

Luton-born Bronson recently got married to former Emmerdale and Coronation Street actress Paula Williamson inside the West Yorkshire prison.

Image copyright BBC, Paula Williamson
Image caption Paula Williamson wrote to Bronson in 2013 after reading his book on living in Broadmoor psychiatric hospital

Speaking after the decision, his 37-year-old wife said: “He’s not going to be released any time soon.”

She told Talk Radio: “Charlie has admitted his wrongdoings and he’s served his time for every single offence that he’s committed, and well over that time, and it’s time now for him to move forward. He’s an OAP.”


Bronson’s jail history

  • 1974 First jailed, age 22, for armed robbery and wounding
  • 1975 Attacked a fellow prisoner with a glass jug
  • 1985 Carried out a three-day rooftop protest
  • 1988 Returned to prison for robbing a jewellery shop
  • 1992 Released, but found guilty shortly afterwards of conspiracy to rob
  • 1994 Holds a prison librarian hostage, demanding a helicopter and tea
  • 1998 Takes three inmates hostage at Belmarsh
  • 1999 Given a life sentence with a three-year tariff for kidnapping
  • 2014 Assaulted prison governor Alan Parkins

The parole hearing was on 7 November.

A Parole Board spokesman said: “We can confirm that a panel of the Parole Board has not directed the release of Charles Salvador.

“Under current legislation, Mr Salvador will be eligible for a further review within two years. The date of the next review will be set by the Ministry of Justice.”

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Jail for man who faked £7m will to cheat charity

Paul CoppolaImage copyright CIARAN DONNELLY
Image caption Paul Coppola was jailed for two years for faking the will of his relative Desiderio Coppola

A man who faked a relative’s will to prevent a charity benefitting from a multi-million pound legacy has been jailed.

Paul Coppola, 65, admitted forging the signature of Desiderio Coppola just days before his death in October 2011.

The deceased had wanted his £7m estate to be divided between his family and the balance left to the charity, Medecins Sans Frontieres.

Coppola was jailed for two years at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

The court was told that Coppola had known his second cousin, Desiderio Coppola, all his life and that the accused had referred to him as “uncle”.

In July 2010 Desiderio Coppola made a will bequeathing much of his estate to his friends and family, including £100,000 to Paul Coppola.

No mention

It also gave instructions that tenants of business premises that he owned were to be offered the chance to buy them.

Mr Coppola also stated that the residue of his estate was to go to Medecins Sans Frontieres, the charity that provides medical assistance in war torn regions and developing countries.

However, days before his gravely ill relative’s death, the court was told that Paul Coppola presented a new will to the family that made no mention of the charity.

It also made no reference to the business premises and instructed that the remainder of the estate be paid to Coppola, of Waverley Park Terrace, Edinburgh.

Image copyright Scottish Courts
Image caption Coppola was jailed for two years at Edinburgh Sheriff Court

Fiscal Ann MacNeill told the court that the day after Desiderio Coppola’s death, the accused contacted his goddaughter, Elvira Fearn, to tell her about the content of the faked document.

The fiscal said: “Although she had no knowledge of the wills or the deceased’s intentions, she was suspicious of the will because she was aware that the deceased hated to pay tax and she did not believe that he would have omitted Medecins Sans Frontieres completely and left the residue to the accused as there would have been a large tax liability to pay.”

She added: “Elvira Fearn was of the opinion that the changes to the will reflected the accused’s allegiances rather than the wishes of the deceased.”

Several days after the death, friends and family held a meeting with Coppola, where he was asked how the new will had come about.

‘Much grief’

The fiscal said: “The accused explained that he found out that the deceased was due to leave the majority of his wealth to charity and that he had persuaded the deceased to change his will.

“He said the deceased had agreed to change the terms of his will.”

In June 2012 confirmation of the will was granted and a total of £1.2m was paid to friends and family who had been bequeathed specific amounts.

By March 2013 Coppola had received a property from the estate in Edinburgh’s Raeburn Place, which he sold for £290,000. He also received a further property in the city‘s Waterloo Place.

Coppola also received more than £270,000 from the estate into his bank account in October 2013.

However, weeks later lawyers went to the Court of Session in Edinburgh and successfully raised an action to have the will set aside.

Coppola chose not to defend the action.

The police were informed and lawyers then took over administration of the estate and began trying to recover money that had been due to the charity.

Coppola later admitted to officers that he had forged the signature of his relative.

Sheriff Frank Crowe told him: “Your actions caused much grief, inconvenience and disappointment to the other legatees and your friends and uncertainty to the tenants of properties which were rented from the deceased.”

The sheriff told Coppola he would have faced a three-year jail sentence if he had been convicted after trial, but it would be reduced in view of his early guilty plea.

Out now: Animal Crossing Pocket Camp, your new mobile gaming obsession

Just when you thought you’d got over your crippling Pokémon Go addiction, along comes Nintendo’s latest mobile phone game.

And judging on first impressions, it’s great.

Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp came out today on iOS and Android and is set to be the next big thing in mobile games.

It’s a mobile spin-off of Nintendo’s Animal Crossing console games, which gave you a virtual house in a picture-postcard cartoon town populated by adorable animals, gave you a virtual mortgage to pay off (yes, really) and then gave you the freedom to potter about at your own leisure.

For this mobile outing the setting has changed to a camp site but the general idea of the game – wander around, make friends with animals, shake a tree to pick apples, maybe do a little fishing – is very familiar.

It’s a little oasis of calm in your pocket and exudes charm in spades.

And going mobile has made it much easier to interact with friends – you can visit their camps, they can visit yours (although inevitably they all look pretty much the same at this early stage) and you can buy and sell unwanted items.

However, AC:PC is also afflicted with one of the less savoury aspects of mobile gaming: in-app purchases.

Nintendo describe the game as “free-to-start“, and as far as we could gather in our limited play time so far it seems pretty much everything in the game can be accessed without paying real money.

But that comes at the cost of waiting for stuff to happen.

For instance, pick an apple for your new pal Goldie the golden retriever and a timer appears over the tree showing how long it’ll take them to grow back – three hours in real time, or you can use a bag of fertiliser on the apple tree to speed things along. The fertiliser costs ‘leaf tickets’, which can be bought using real-world money in transactions ranging from 99p to £38.99.

In the early game this doesn’t seem too much of a worry, but experience in similar games suggest the waiting times will get longer and longer for the more desirable items later on.

Parents will want to make sure in-app purchases are turned off.

But much of the charm of earlier Animal Crossing games has always been the leisurely pace, and waiting for events in real time – certain insects only come out at night, or events only happen on certain days of the week. Even the in-game seasons progress at the same pace as real life.

So unless you’re impatient, you’ll be able to enjoy Pocket Camp in small doses – and there’s plenty to enjoy.

Leeds nightclub shooting CCTV footage released

CCTV footage showing three men attacking a man outside a Leeds nightclub with a gun, machete and knife has been released by police.

Shaquille Liddie, 24, Kemar Ricketts, 28, and Seion Allen, 33, all of no fixed abode, were jailed on Monday after targeting a 42-year-old man outside the Nite Trax club, on Chapeltown Road, on 29 August 2016.

The victim was stabbed and shot in the chest from just a few feet away and had to undergo surgery as people were celebrating the Leeds West Indian Carnival weekend.

Liddie admitted attempted murder and possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and was jailed for 14 years. Ricketts and Allen were both found guilty of attempted murder and each sentenced to 19 years in prison.

Jim Clark Rally deaths ‘could have been avoided’

Rally victims
Image caption Elizabeth Allan, Len Stern and Iain Provan died at the Jim Clark Rally in 2014, while Joy Robson, right, died at the Snowman Rally in 2013

Three deaths at a rally in the Scottish Borders could have been avoided if people had been clearly banned from standing in the area where the crash took place, a sheriff has ruled.

A fatal accident inquiry was held into the deaths at the Jim Clark Rally in 2014, and a fourth fatality at the Snowman Rally near Inverness in 2013.

Sheriff Kenneth Maciver found no reasonable precautions could have avoided the death at the Snowman Rally.

A joint inquiry examined both events.

Iain Provan, 64, Elizabeth Allan, 63, and Len Stern, 71, died at the Jim Clark Rally.

Joy Robson, 51, lost her life at the Snowman Rally the previous year.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The sheriff criticised the verification system at the Jim Clark Rally

The inquiry found that all four had died from “multiple injuries” after being struck by the cars, which had experienced an “involuntary loss of control”.

The sheriff said he found no defects in the system of working at the Snowman Rally, and that no precautions might have avoided the death.

However, he said that the deaths at the Jim Clark event might have been avoided had an area north of the Leet bridge been “created, delineated and identified” so it “clearly prohibited spectators or photographers from standing anywhere in that area”.

He also identified a “weak, ambiguous, and ultimately inadequate verification system” for checking the proper performance of the work of stage commanders or stage setup crews in identifying the areas which were prohibited to spectators for safety reasons.

The sheriff delivered a string of recommendations including:

  • all rallies should have clear and properly prepared set-up arrangements shared with marshals so they are clear of precise prohibited areas
  • at least one safety car should have a specific remit to ensure prohibited areas are clearly marked
  • rally organisers should keep a record of crashes or “near misses” to identify areas where spectators might be at risk of injury
  • the introduction of a warning light system in rally cars to ensure they can be stopped as quickly as possible
  • consideration should be given to training marshals to deal with situations where spectators put themselves on a live rally track.
Image caption Donald Martin suffered a shattered pelvis in the crash at the Jim Clark Rally

Donald Martin, from Renfrew was among those injured in the Jim Clark Rally crash. He suffered a shattered pelvis, seven fractured ribs and injuries to his leg.

He had been watching the rally with his sister-in-law Ms Allan, her partner Mr Provan and his friend Mr Stern.

He told BBC Scotland they believed they were in a “safe area”.

“Where we stood there was no signage to state that there were no spectators allowed to stand there and we were even allowed to stand behind the taped area and considered it a safe area,” he said.

“We didn’t get moved in anyway. We assumed it was safe. The organisers didn’t tell us anything different. They came through with the spectator control cars and nobody moved us back from the taped area.”

Speaking ahead of the publication of the sheriff’s findings, he said he hoped rallying overall would be made a “lot safer” from a spectator point of view.

Festive street fun comes to city

BRADFORD city centre will burst into life with colourful street entertainment for a weekend of festive fun. 

More than 20 magical and interactive acts will surprise and delight visitors to the city as the magic of the big day gets closer. 

Father Christmas and his sleigh will make an appearance, along with elves, fairies and stilt walkers. 

There will also be towering inflated bouncing snowmen, cuddly Christmas characters, Rudolph the Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman and Percy Penguin. 

And two giant sparking ‘Snowball Sprites’ on wheels will whiz around the city, while a Snow Globe glides gracefully through the streets to create a magical fairytale atmosphere. 

Liver Cottage Christmas will serve up some disgusting seasonal tips – including how to make the perfect sprout smoothie – and Just in Case Christmas will juggle balls of holly, play with flaming puddings and produce a Christmas cake in a flash of light.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Bradford Council’s Executive Member for Environment, Sport and Culture, said: “Christmas is a magical time of year so we wanted to bring that magic to the city centre to entertain shoppers and children.”

City Park and Tyrell Street will also host all the fun of the fair from November 30 to December 3. While all street theatre will be free to watch, charges will apply for funfair rides. 

Festive Streets will run on Saturday, December 2, and Sunday, December 3, from 12pm until 5pm in and around the city centre, including Bank Street, Hustlergate, New Market Place, Darley Street, Kirkgate and City Park. 

Saturday will also see a Made Bradford Christmas Market held in Darley Street.

 

Racing driver Tim Sugden talks about his latest project and living life in the fast lane

ICONIC classics – the power and practicality of the reliable ‘Landy’ and the super cool and cute Mini stand wing to wing in Tim Sugden’s Horsforth showroom.

Launched in October, Purple-Dot-Performance.com is another turning point in Tim’s glittering motor racing career which is heading full circle.

Coincidentally, the circular ‘purple dot,’ Tim explains racing drivers are clamouring to achieve on race timing screens symbolises success – it is, to put it simply, being the best you can be hence its inclusion in his business branding.

Glancing at the aforementioned wheels in the showroom in Long Row this is evidently the bar Tim has set himself in business as well as on track.

The Morgan parked elegantly in the window is brand new and unregistered; the 1979 MG Midget in pristine condition following its previous pampered existence inhabiting a heated garage in Switzerland; the C reg Mini Mayfair, cherished by one lady owner from new and with only a few thousand miles on the clock and one of the last Land Rovers to roll off the production line are among the prestigious marques Tim has procured through expertise.

Car sales was where it all began which is why his career is now coming full circle. As a young entrepreneur Tim began selling cars to fund the motor racing ambition he had harboured since taking the wheel of his first go-kart when he was 12.

By the age of 19, and with a boost from the Government’s new business start-up scheme, Tim began selling cheap runabouts from two pitches in Lidget Green and Wibsey in his then home city, Bradford.

“They were £500, £600 Allegros; Marinas, Chevettes, Cortinas and old Minis,” recalls Tim.

Years later he was climbing into the cockpits of some of the world’s most iconic wheels, Aston Martins, Ferraris, Porsches and Mercedes, the dream cars young boys pin to their bedroom walls on posters as aspirations of the symbols of success they yearn to own.

By this time Tim was literally living the dream – but it didn’t come easy as anyone wanting to enter motorsport without money will know.

“We didn’t have that sort of money. It is ridiculously hard to get into motorsport,” recalls Tim.

His father, David, who effectively fuelled Tim’s early fascination with cars when he watched Dad’s brief dabble at amateur racing, recalls taking out a three year loan simply to fund a year‘s lease on a racing car while making ends meet on a sales rep’s wage.

“I was 26 and still living at home with my Mum and Dad. I didn’t have a penny to my name,” recalls Tim.

Conscious of his own struggles, Tim’s success has enabled him to establish a scholarship helping young talented drivers to rise through the ranks.

Coaching and motorsport management are other strands to the Purple Dot brand he is busy developing through initiatives such as the Purple Dot branded BMW racing car he runs on the famous Nurburgring racing circuit in Germany.

“Everything I do in motorsport is around the world,” says Tim, who is eager build a ‘car community’ closer to home – hence the opening of the showroom.

While he’s enjoying his success now, Tim recalls the struggles which forced him to briefly park his dream of becoming a racing driver.

It was, he recalls, a contact, he had known previously, who fuelled his enthusiasm to race again after popping in to the car sales pitch he was running.

“He said ‘what are you racing these days?’ I said I had stopped. He asked why and I said because it’s a nightmare. I said I’d put everything into it and got nowhere. He said ‘you shouldn’t give up – you’re really talented, you should keep going.”

Tim took advantage of his wise words. “I could have started building the business up and I could have ended up with a huge car sales business if I’d stuck at it at 20, but I would have always looked back and regretted not trying to make a career out of what I had dreamed of doing,” says Tim.

His lucky break, and the climb to the big-time began when renowned racing car manufacturer, Van Diemen, in Snetterton, Norfolk, loaned Tim a brand new RF87 and racing car engine builder, Scholar, gave him an engine.

Formula Ford beckoned and the offer of a factory drive through Swift catapulted Tim’s career. He spent a season driving for Honda, finishing third in the CRX challenge. Tim recalls it was the first time he’d participated in a race without spending a penny.

“That was a real pivotal moment,” says Tim.

It also paved the way for 1990 – the ‘big year’ when he was selected to drive for BMW’s Junior Team following the company’s talent competition to find young racing drivers.

Tim and two other young drivers were offered four races each. At the end of the year Tim was taken on full-time.

Finally he was entering life in the fast lane – literally. He swapped the unreliable Renault 11 he’d purchased for £75 for a brand new BMW road car and was competing in touring car races garnering significant numbers of spectators.

Three years after driving for BMW, Tim was approached by Toyota before switching to GT racing which saw him take the wheel of a range of sports cars; Ferraris, Porsches to name-drop a few.

He spent six years driving for a team put together by Pink Floyd manager, Steve O’ Rourke, during which he participated in the world famous 24 hour Le Mans FIA World Endurance Championship.

After turning professional Tim’s racing career began to go global. In 2002 he participated in 22 international races with 17 top six finishes, nine podiums and five wins.

According to David, only two British drivers won more international races than Tim during this period – Lewis Hamilton and Alan McNish.

In 2004 Tim competed in 29 races, finished in the top six 21 times; had 13 podiums and five wins.

Chatting about his son’s career, David is naturally proud of Tim’s achievements and the fact that he has ‘stuck at it.’ “It is the hardest thing in the world to do and be paid to do it since he was in his early 20s and that is what makes me proud of him.”

Cars are a shared passion for father and son. “I had always been a car enthusiast and the opportunity to work for Aston Martin was heaven sent,” says David, who worked at the Farsley factory after joining the company in 1956 as a 17-year-old apprentice.

He recalls Tim’s interest developed as a young boy. “Obviously in a family like ourselves people bought him Dinky toys as a child. He always carried one in his pocket.”

Now Tim is stacking them up – models of the super cars he has driven are neatly arranged in a tower on his office desk. A McLaren pencil tin, modelled on a car he once drove and once retailed through Woolworths, has a poignant memory for Tim who recalls signing autographs on the many brandished by fans.

Polished trophies are flanked by the poster recording one of Tim’s many memorable achievements in 2005 as the only second British driver to win the Porsche Cup for 25 years.

His most recent success, bringing his story up to date so far, is with GruppeM, the racing team set up by Kenny Chen in 2004.

Tim, who already had the expertise of setting up and running his own race team for five years, helped Kenny form Gruppe M. He has participated in championships around the world, including Asia and America. More recently, and driving for Mercedes, GruppeM won the Blancpain Asia GT championship this year.

And so Tim’s success continues through motorsport and his new business. “The idea is to build up a car community in this area,” explains Tim, who is also offering track days for those who want to experience life in the fast lane.

Being a racing driver is a natural ability – according to Tim: “It is a real strange blend of qualities. I manage drivers now and it is controlled aggression but it is a rare set of traits,” Tim explains.

“You have to have a good hand to eye coordination and a really good sense of balance and you need to have the ability to stay calm under pressure, your brain has to keep working calmly under pressure because everything is happening so fast,” he says, hinting at the 180mph speeds they regularly reach on the racing track.

Fuelled by his passion, Tim is keen to continue living life in the fast lane. “The main thing is to keep doing what I am doing; keep enjoying what I am doing. My job never feels like a job.”

‘Cruel and evil’ widower groomed and raped girl, 15

AN ‘EVIL and cruel’ pervert who groomed a vulnerable 15-year-old girl before repeatedly raping her has been jailed for 11 years.

Pornography addict Paul Hayton, 59, plied the child with money, cigarettes and alcohol to sexually abuse her over a three year period, Bradford Crown Court heard.

Hayton, of Allerby Green, Woodside, Bradford, was labelled a danger to girls by Recorder John Thackray, who said the former soldier was willing to take risks to engage in deviant behaviour.

Hayton was convicted by a jury in September of three offences of rape, three counts of sexual activity with a child and a charge of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child.

While he was remanded in custody awaiting sentence, his probation officer assessed that he posed a danger to the public.

Hayton’s victim said in a statement, read out to the packed courtroom: “Words cannot describe what you have done to me. Because of you I am broken inside and out.

“You are like a constant nightmare that never goes away and will never stop torturing me.”

The young woman said she felt ugly and worthless. She had considered suicide, self-harmed and turned to alcohol to try to get Hayton out of her head.

“He is an evil, cruel, perverted man,” she stated.

In mitigation, Hayton’s barrister Stephen Uttley said his client was a self-confessed porn addict but he was a hardworking man who had served in the Army and he had no previous convictions.

Recorder Thackray said Hayton planned to abuse the girl, touching her bottom.

When she was afraid to tell her parents, he groomed her with money, cigarettes and alcohol and watched pornography in her presence.

Hayton, a widower, targeted the vulnerable teenager, who was 15 when he first raped her, the court was told.

Addressing Hayton, Recorder Thackray said: “She was a child and she made it clear that your advances were completely and utterly unwanted.”

Recorder Thackray said the complainant had suffered severe psychological harm, battling depression and anxiety, thinking of suicide and self-harming and turning to alcohol.

He told Hayton: “Your offending has had a profound effect on her and it will continue for the rest of her life.”

Hayton was given a 14-year extended prison sentence made up of 11 years in jail and three years on extended licence.

He must serve at least two thirds of the 11 years behind bars and he will not be freed until the end of the prison term unless the Parole Board decides it is safe to release him earlier.

He must sign on the sex offender register for life and the judge made an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

Hayton, who wore a red casual jacket for the court hearing, sat impassively in the dock throughout the proceedings.

After the case, an NSPCC spokesman said: “Hayton’s crimes against his young victim are utterly despicable and his behaviour is a sadly all-too-familiar example of the way groomers target vulnerable children.

“His victim has shown incredible courage in speaking out and this case shows that victims can come forward with the confidence they will be listened to.

“We want every child to be able to spot exploitation for what it is and, if they find themselves in danger, know that it is categorically not their fault.

“Anyone with concerns about a child can call the NSPCC Helpline 24/7 in confidence on 0808 800 5000, children who need help can call Childline on 0800 1111.”

Elsie Scully-Hicks: Killer dad ‘was suitable to adopt’

Matthew Scully-HicksImage copyright South Wales Police
Image caption A jury unanimously found Matthew Scully-Hicks guilty of murdering 18-month-old Elsie

A father who murdered his 18-month-old baby was given a “glowing report” on his suitability to adopt her, a judge has found.

Elsie Scully-Hicks died in Cardiff in May 2016 from catastrophic injuries inflicted by Matthew Scully-Hicks, 31, of Delabole, Cornwall.

A family court inquiry carried out before his trial found he appeared to be “eminently suitable to adopt”.

He was jailed for life and must serve at least 18 years in prison.

Image copyright Family photograph
Image caption Elsie Scully-Hicks died two weeks after being formally adopted

When she died, Elsie had injuries experts later compared to a “major trauma such as a car accident”.

The court heard they were inflicted by her adoptive father who violently lost his temper as he struggled to cope with caring for her.

Senior family court judge Mr Justice Moor looked at how Elsie died as part of a fact-finding hearing in December 2016, but his findings have only now been published because the criminal case has concluded.

In his report, he concluded Matthew Scully-Hicks was a “Jekyll and Hyde character”.

He wrote: “In private, he was quite unable to control himself when Elsie played up. He was able to cope without difficulty when there were others around.”

Image caption Matthew Scully-Hicks claimed he did not know how Elsie sustained her fatal injuries

The judge said Matthew Scully-Hicks swore at Elsie “in unacceptable language, including some truly shocking words” and assaulted her.

But he said his husband Craig Scully-Hicks was not to blame, writing he had “come to the clear conclusion that I should exonerate Craig of any failure to protect Elsie”.

“There is nothing he could or should have done but I fear he may find that difficult to accept,” he wrote.

The judge said there was a striking contrast between Matthew and Craig Scully-Hicks, who he said was “immensely distressed throughout this case”.

He wrote: “I accept that different people react in a different way. I further accept that a failure to demonstrate emotion is not an indication of guilt.

“I do find it surprising, however, that he (Matthew) did not show any emotion during his oral evidence to me, apart from one brief occasion, in a case that is fraught with emotion.”

Giving evidence during the murder trial, Craig Scully-Hicks said he would not have tolerated any wrongdoing by his husband, if he had suspected it.

In his report, Mr Justice Moor said Craig Scully-Hicks accepted his husband had killed Elsie and the pair are now separated.

Image caption Matthew Scully-Hicks claimed Elsie fell down these stairs less than three months before she died

Detailing the events which led to Elsie’s death, Mr Justice Moor said he had come to “some very clear conclusions” about what had happened.

He said he believed Elsie had been “playing up” and Matthew Scully-Hicks had “lost his temper with her as he had done before when nobody else was present”.

The judge said he believed he had picked her up and shook her hard, fracturing her ribs and breaking her leg.

He then threw her to the floor where her head “impacted with something hard causing bruising to her forehead and a fractured skull”.

He added: “These injuries resulted in her death.

“I do not have any doubt about this. I am satisfied it was what occurred. There is no other explanation for her injuries.”

Mr Justice Moor, who is based in the Family Division of the High Court, said the fact it was a gay adoption was “quite irrelevant”, adding he was satisfied Matthew Scully-Hicks had “presented to the world as eminently suitable to adopt”.

Paul Hollywood splits from his wife after 20 years

Paul Hollywood and his wife Alex HollywoodImage copyright PA
Image caption Alex Hollywood describes herself on Twitter as a “FoodieMutha recipe tweeter”

Paul Hollywood and his wife Alex are separating after nearly 20 years of marriage.

The Great British Bake Off judge and his wife, who is a chef, said in a joint statement: “It is with sadness that we have decided to separate.

“Our focus continues to be the happiness of our son… we ask the press and public to allow us privacy during this very difficult time.”

They previously separated in 2013 when the TV baker admitted having an affair.

Image caption Hollywood said his affair with Marcela Valladolid was ‘the biggest mistake of my life’

Hollywood confessed to having had a relationship with Marcela Valladolid, his co-star on the US version of Bake Off, which was axed after one series due to poor ratings.

He and his wife got back together a few months later and he described the incident as “the biggest mistake of my life” in an interview with BBC Radio 5 live.

Speaking at the time, he said he “was shocked about the whole thing kicking off the way it did… but I deserved it and I’ve taken it”, adding: “It was my punishment.”

Hollywood will return as a judge for the second series of Channel 4’s The Great British Bake Off next year, having moved with the show when it went to Channel 4 from its original home on the BBC last year.

He was head baker at a number of hotels before finding TV fame, launching his own bread firm and writing recipe books.

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