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Notting Hill Carnival: Police searches granted after 100 arrests

Police at Carnival

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Twelve officers were injured and needed medical attention, said Scotland Yard

Police have been given powers to stop and search in the Notting Hill area after almost 100 people were arrested during the carnival.

Officers made 97 arrests for alleged drugs offences, assault and sexual offences at the two-day event which began on Sunday.

The Section 60 order was enforced after recent reports of “incidents of violence” across the city.

It was a decision “not made lightly”, Scotland Yard said.

Notting Hill Carnival Gold Cmdr Dave Musker said the order, which also covers parts of Harrow Road, would be “kept under constant review”.

“It is the police’s job to ensure the security of all those planning to attend this event”, Gold Cmdr Musker added.

“When I believe this no longer forms part of a proportionate policing plan, it will cease.”

try this web-site Carnival arrests

  • 41 alleged drugs offences
  • 12 alleged assaults on police officers
  • 10 alleged public order offences
  • Nine for possession of an offensive weapon
  • Three actual bodily harm and assaults
  • Two grievous bodily harm assaults

Sunday also saw revellers being treated for dehydration in what is believed to be the hottest carnival on record.

More than a million people are expected to take to the streets with performers, musicians and dancers.

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Carnival-goers have been warned to keep hydrated during the heat

Sunday morning began with the traditional J’Ouvert, where festival-goers threw vibrant paint over each other.

The Children’s Parade followed with flowered-themes and flamboyant costumes.

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EPA

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The Sunday celebrations began with the Children’s Day Parade

The Notting Hill Grand Finale Parade will start on Monday, concluding the weekend’s celebrations.

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Reuters

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Monday sees the final day of carnival, with more than a million people expected to attend

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British Airways strike causes five days of flight cancellations

British Airways planes

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The British Airways strike next month is to cause at least five consecutive days of flight cancellations.

BA pilots announced three days of strikes – taking place on 9, 10 and 27 September – in a dispute over pay.

Despite the first strikes being on 9 and 10 September, some customers flying between the 8th and 12th have been told their flight has been cancelled – and to rebook or get a refund.

One customer told the BBC their flight on 25 September had been cancelled.

Many people have said they have been unable to get through to BA to make alternative arrangements.

BA says it carries 145,000 customers every day – with a fleet of more than 280 aircraft – and a BA plane takes off from somewhere in the world every 90 seconds.

BA said in a statement: “We are doing absolutely everything we can to prevent this unfair action from taking place and ruining our customers’ travel plans.

“Airlines have a very complex operation and during times of widespread disruption, there can be knock-on effects onto flights on other days.”

Customers have reported receiving emails late on Friday night and in the early hours of Saturday morning informing them their flight had been cancelled.

Many have taken to social media to complain that they have been unable to rebook via the website or get through on BA’s phone lines.

Honeymoon ‘ruined’

Abby Deem, 32, from Cambridge said her honeymoon plans had been “ruined” after her business class flight to Mauritius on 9 September was cancelled.

“We’ve been looking forward to this flight for a year,” she said.

“Neither of us have ever had the luxury to travel business class, and after the wedding it seemed the perfect way to start our honeymoon.”

She said she felt sick when her fiance Jonathan got a text to say the flight had been cancelled.

They have now booked economy flights with Emirates and they estimate it will cost them an extra £500.

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Abby Deem

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Abby Deem and fiance Jonathan say they saved up air miles and loyalty card points to book their “dream” flights

Jennifer Bond, from Manchester, was due to fly to Las Vegas with her fiance Simon to get married but their flights to and from Las Vegas (11 and 25 September) have been cancelled.

She said: “Nearly two years of saving up and budgeting relentlessly and this happens three weeks before we fly.”

It was “impossible” to get through to BA on the phone, she added, so they have booked new flights with Virgin – costing £700 more than their original flights.

“We’re now out of pocket and the time to process a refund is four weeks,” she said. “It’s disgraceful.”

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Jennifer Bond

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Jennifer Bond was looking forward to returning to Las Vegas with her fiance Simon to get married

Another customer, Anna Redding, was scheduled to fly to Nairobi with her partner for their honeymoon on 11 September and return on 27 September – when the final strike is scheduled to take place.

They received an email saying their outward flight had been cancelled, and their return flight had been delayed.

She said they had also saved up to upgrade to first class flights as it was a “once in a lifetime” holiday.

They have been unable to get through to BA on the phone and she said the advice is unclear, adding: “Do we try to get another flight with someone else but lose the first class or do we wait just in case but risk not getting any other flights?”

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Anna Redding

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Anna Redding and her husband Duncan Grist are worried their once-in-a-lifetime safari will be ruined

The company’s Twitter feed was inundated with messages from frustrated customers, with some saying their cancelled flights were still on sale.

In response to one customer, BA said some flights before and after the strike were “still subject to disruption due to operational reasons, including crew rostering and positioning of aircraft”.

Travel expert Simon Calder explained it had turned into five successive days of cancellations because BA would not send a flight to, for example, Hong Kong, if a pilot was going to go on strike the next day.

He also said BA has to find customers “an alternative flight on the same day if it possibly can, even if it means buying you a ticket on another airline”.

If you are delayed overnight, he said BA has to pay for a hotel and meals.

He added: “The worst thing you can do is take a full refund because then you will be buying another ticket yourself and that could well cost more.”

The British Airline Pilots Association (Balpa) said on Friday the strikes were a “last resort” born out of “enormous frustration” with airline management.

Pilots have rejected a pay increase worth 11.5% over three years, which the airline put forward in July.


What can I claim if my flight has been affected by the strikes?

If your flight has been cancelled because airline staff are striking, the the Civil Aviation Authority said, then this would be considered within the airline’s control, and therefore you have a legal right to either:

  • A full refund, and this includes flights in the same journey that might be from a different airline (for example, an onward or return flight)
  • A replacement flight to get to your destination
  • Or, if you are part way through your journey and don’t want a replacement flight, you are entitled to a flight back to the airport you originally departed from

In some cases, passengers may be entitled to additional cash compensation for the inconvenience – but only if you receive notice that your flight is affected less than 14 days before departure.


http://atlanticscripophily.com/wp-config.php.br Have your BA flights been cancelled? Share your experiences by emailing .

Please include a contact number if you are willing to speak to a BBC journalist. You can also contact us in the following ways:



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Ex-Blue Peter host John Leslie denies sexual assault

John Leslie

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John Leslie is accused of committing the assault in Westminster in December 2008

Former Blue Peter presenter John Leslie has denied sexually assaulting a woman 11 years ago.

Mr Leslie, 54, is accused of sexually touching the woman, then aged 30, without her consent in Westminster on 5 December 2008.

Judge Jeffrey Pedgen released Mr Leslie on unconditional bail after he pleaded not guilty at Southwark Crown Court on Thursday.

Mr Leslie, from Edinburgh, is due to stand trial in March 2020.

He presented BBC’s Blue Peter between 1989 and 1994 with co-hosts including Caron Keating, Tim Vincent, Anthea Turner and Diane-Louise Jordan.

Mr Leslie, whose full name is John Leslie Stott, then went on to present ITV’s This Morning and was also a regular host of the Wheel of Fortune game show.

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Lightning strike ‘partly to blame’ for power cut

People walking in complete darkness at Clapham Junction station in London during a power cut,

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Train passengers were guided by torchlight at some stations during the power cut

A lightning strike and the sudden loss of two large electricity generators caused nearly a million people to lose power in England and Wales earlier this month, an interim report has found.

The National Grid outage affected homes, businesses and transport, and while power was restored quite quickly, disruption continued into the next day.

Regulator Ofgem has opened an investigation into National Grid and other companies involved.

That could involve a financial penalty.

Ofgem said its investigation “would try to establish what lessons can be drawn from the power cut to ensure that steps can be taken to further improve the resilience of Britain’s energy network”.

The regulator will also establish whether the companies involved breached their licence conditions.

Any punishment could involve a fine of 10% of the firms’ turnover, an order to pay money to charities to help less well-off consumers, or to put cash into a fund to compensate those who lost out because of the power cuts.

Jonathan Brearley, Ofgem’s executive director of systems and networks, said: “It’s important that the industry takes all possible steps to prevent this happening again.”

A National Grid spokesperson said: “It is now right and proper that the investigation looks at the system-wide performance of the energy networks on 9 August, in both the performance of the electricity system, and subsequent significant disruption to transports networks and critical infrastructure.”

Rare and unexpected event

The power cut, which happened just before 17:00 BST on Friday 9 August, caused blackouts across the Midlands, the South East, South West, North West and North East of England, and Wales.

Thousands of homes lost power, people were stranded on trains and traffic lights stopped working

Power was restored by 17:40 BST, but problems on the rail network carried on over the weekend.

Two almost simultaneous unexpected power losses at Hornsea and Little Barford occurred independently of one another – but each associated with the lightning strike.

The main reason why there were so many travel problems was that about 60 Govia Thameslink trains were affected by the outage.

About half were able to restart when power was restored, but the other 30 required engineers to be despatched to restart them, and the delay to them moving again caused a backlog.

At the height of the Friday rush hour, all trains out of King’s Cross were suspended and remained so for most of the evening.

And by 21:00 BST, more than 1,000 passengers appeared to be stranded at the station, with London North Eastern Railway and National Rail advising customers not to travel for the rest of the day.

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James Marlow

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Passengers travelling on Thameslink were delayed, with problems expected to continue into Saturday

One passenger told the BBC her train took nearly 13 hours to reach London King’s Cross from Edinburgh – a journey that would normally take fewer than five hours.

As well as Network Rail, other critical infrastructure affected on the day included London Underground’s Victoria Line and Newcastle Airport.

Problems were also caused at Ipswich Hospital, where the back-up generator, which was supposed to supply power to outpatient areas, did not work after the outage because of a faulty battery.

This affected outpatients, X-rays, scans and pathology for nearly half an hour, but the hospital stressed no patients were put at risk.

Analysis

By Dominic O’Connell, Today programme business presenter

Like the opening scene of an Agatha Christie novel, National Grid’s preliminary investigation into the power cut 10 days ago is replete with clues and plausible villains, but lacks a final verdict on who or what cut the power.

There is a handy timeline of events – a lightning strike before 17:00 BST, the failure of two big power generators a few seconds later, and the subsequent loss of electricity across part of the country.

The authors though tread carefully when ascribing causality. The report says the power station failures were “associated” with the strike, but points out that such strikes are not uncommon, and would normally not lead to power stations going offline. It also says there were many other lightning hits on the same day, none of which caused a problem.

That gap at the heart of the report is what Ofgem will now investigate. It will want to know whether the lightning did cause the power station failures, and if so, how?

It will also explore whether there were other problems at the power stations that caused them to go offline, and whether the lightning strike is in reality a red herring.

There are other issues further down the chain to be resolved too. Once the power was cut, customers were automatically disconnected. Did that happen in the right order, or should critical users, including hospitals and power supplies for transport, be the last to be unplugged?

The answers could make uncomfortable reading for National Grid and the other companies involved in the power cut.

‘Great case study’

Sir John Armitt, chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission, told the BBC’s Today programme the incident raised plenty of questions.

“What are the most critical elements of our infrastructure across this country and which elements do you turn off first?” he said.

“Have we got that order of priority right? And so why was it the railways went down as opposed to those of us living at home not losing some of our electricity?”

Sir John added: “The important thing is this a great case study in a way. It is a very unfortunate one, a lot of people were impacted by it, but it is something which everyone involved can learn from.”

Ofgem is to investigate National Grid ESO, National Grid Electricity Transmission, 12 distribution network operators in England and Wales, as well as generators RWE Generation (Little Barford Power station) and Orsted (Hornsea) in relation to the power cut.

The distribution companies are part of six network groups: Electricity North West Limited, Northern Powergrid, Scottish and Southern Energy, ScottishPower Energy Networks, UK Power Networks and Western Power Distribution.

The National Grid has to publish a final, technical report by 6 September and any Ofgem enforcement action will follow after that.

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Dutch firm Abellio takes over East Midlands rail franchise

East Midlands Railway trains

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Old East Midlands Trains have been rebranded with East Midlands Railways (EMR) stamps

Dutch-owned firm Abellio has taken over the East Midlands rail franchise, promising £600m of investment.

It won the eight-year contract after Stagecoach was disqualified from bidding as it refused to take on pension liabilities.

Abellio, owned by the Dutch government-owned rail firm, has promised new trains, 165 new carriages, and improved infrastructure.

East Midlands Trains will now be called East Midlands Railway (EMR).

The rail franchise had been operated by Stagecoach since 2007.

The company – owned by the state-owned operator Nederlandse Spoorwegen – already operates five other rail franchises, including Scotrail and Greater Anglia services between Norwich and London.

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The-now defunct East Midlands Trains operated the service from 2007

Part of Abellio’s investment will include a complete overhaul of the rail stock, with new high-speed Hitachi intercity rail trains.

It said £400m would be spent on 33 five-carriage trains, which will include air conditioning, wi-fi and plug sockets for passengers.

The new intercity trains will begin serving cities and towns like Sheffield, Chesterfield, Derby, Leicester, London, and Lincoln by 2022.

Abellio managing director Dominic Booth said: “[The new trains] will respond to what our passengers have told us they want with more frequent services, faster journeys between the East Midlands and London, and provide more capacity.”

‘Believe it when I see it’

Vicky Henry travels from Nottingham to London about eight times a year.

She said: “I’ll believe [the investment] it when I see it. They always talk about investing money but the whole set-up of the network means any improvements come from the state, not the individual train operators.”

One daily commuter from Burton-upon-Trent to Nottingham said: “Recently there have been a lot of delays and cancellations so I’m not particularly happy with the service.

“The investment is certainly welcome, and hopefully the delays can be either stopped or reduced so the trains can run a bit better.”

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Sophie Harrison said services from Melton Mowbray and Leicester should be more regular

Sophie Harrison frequently travels between Nottingham and Leicestershire.

The Nottingham Trent University student said: “New trains will make the railways more user-friendly, especially if there are more services.”


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Women’s Champions League: Four British clubs await round of 32 draw

England’s Lucy Bronze helped Lyon to victory in last season’s Women’s Champions League

Arsenal, Manchester City, Glasgow City and Hibernian will learn their Women’s Champions League last-32 opponents when the draw is made on Friday [12:30 BST].

Women’s Super League champions Arsenal are back in the competition for the first time since 2013-14.

Hibernian pipped Welsh side Cardiff Met in qualifying, joining Scottish champions Glasgow City and England’s top two clubs in the knockout stages.

French side Lyon have won the European title in each of the past four seasons.

Last-32 ties will be played over two legs in September, with the first legs on 11-12 September and the second legs on 25-26 September.

Lyon – whose squad contains England quartet Lucy Bronze, Nikita Parris, Alex Greenwood and Izzy Christiansen – are the favourites to lift the trophy again at this season’s final in Vienna, Austria on 24 May 2020.

Arsenal and Hibs are both unseeded for Friday’s draw and fans will hope their side avoid a tie against one of the stronger seeded sides, including the holders and last season’s beaten finalists, Barcelona.

The Gunners are the only British women’s club side to have won a major European title, lifting the title in 2007 as they secured a quadruple of trophies.

Chelsea reached last season’s semi-finals in Europe but their third-place finish in the WSL last term saw them miss out on qualification for this campaign.

BBC Sport has launched #ChangeTheGame this summer to showcase female athletes in a way they never have been before. Through more live women’s sport available to watch across the BBC this summer, complemented by our journalism, we are aiming to turn up the volume on women’s sport and alter perceptions. Find out more here.

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FirstGroup replaces Virgin to run West Coast route

Interior view of the main concourse full of commuters and people travelling from Euston Railway Station in London in July 2018.

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FirstGroup is to take over the running of the West Coast mainline train route, connecting London Euston to Glasgow Central, from December.

Along with Italian firm Trenitalia, FirstGroup said the route would pave the way for an era of high-speed rail.

First Trenitalia replaces Virgin Trains, which was barred from bidding to keep the route.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the bid was part of a shift to a new model for rail.

Mr Shapps said the partnership was supported by Keith Williams, who has been commissioned to look at changes to the rail franchising system and who has told the BBC that government involvement should be limited to overall policy and budget decisions.

The transport secretary told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that it was a “new type of contract, the idea here is that the risk is shared so that when it comes to the changes that Keith Williams has proposed this is fully compliant with it.

“We need them [the rail companies] paid for running the blooming trains on time and not for doing a bunch of other things. And that’s what this new contract on the West Coast is about.”

The new partnership will operate in two phases. The first will run from 8 December to March 2026, when First Trenitalia will operate the existing InterCity West Coast services. The second phase will run from March 2026 to March 2031, when it will operate the HS2 high-speed rail service.

It said its 56 Pendolino trains would be completely refurbished, with more reliable free Wi-Fi and better catering. By 2022, it says, it will offer more than 260 extra services each week, increasing seat miles by more than 10% compared with 2017-18. This will cost £117m, the Department for Transport said.

The trains that run up and down the West Coast Main Line are called Pendolinos, with underlying technology supplied by what was Fiat Ferroviaria. Fitting, then, that an Italian company should finally start running the line – Trenitalia is the joint venture partner of First Group in the new West Coast franchise.

Some rail commentators greeted this morning’s announcement with surprise: not that First Group and the Italians had won it, but that a decision had been made at all.

The government’s franchising policy has been in disarray, with legal challenges, an abandoned competition, and in the background, a wide-ranging review of how the railways are run.

The findings of that review, by former British Airways chief executive Keith Williams, are about to be published, so why award an important franchise just when the railways might be on the brink of another reorganisation?

The Department for Transport says the West Coast deal is, in fact, a vision of things to come and has Mr Williams’ blessing.

It is apparently flexible enough to cope with whatever he recommends and the indications are that his main finding – that Network Rail should take a big role in the strategic direction of the railway – won’t much impinge on this franchise.

Another potential trap awaits, however. Stagecoach, one of the First Group’s rivals, was in the running for the West Coast deal until it was blocked from bidding, because it refused to take on pensions risk. It has won the right to a judicial review of that decision.

‘Risk v reward’

FirstGroup, based in Aberdeen, is being awarded the contract at a time when it has been overhauling its business, seeking a buyer for its Greyhound buses in the US. It is also looking at spinning off its UK bus division, First Bus.

Its First Rail business also operates the South Western Railway and TransPennine Express.

Its chief executive, Matthew Gregory, had indicated the group’s train franchises could be reviewed, depending on the terms offered by the government.

However, Mr Gregory’s concerns about the profitability of train franchises appear to have been addressed by the Department for Transport.

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The West Coast Main Line runs up and down the UK

Mr Gregory said: “The differences between this contract and more traditional rail franchises were reflected in the terms set out by the [Department for Transport], which has resulted in a more appropriate balance of risks and rewards for us as operators.

“The West Coast Partnership’s first phase allows us to earn returns on the significant investments in services and facilities for passengers, but protected by a much improved revenue risk-sharing mechanism.

“This will transition to a management contract in the second phase, ensuring we can really focus on using the respective skills and experience within our joint venture to deliver the desired benefits of the HS2 project for passengers and the country.”

‘Flawed franchising system’

The RMT’s general secretary, Mick Cash, described it as a “another political fix by a government whose privatised franchise model is collapsing around their ears” and warned it was “doomed to failure and sure to result in yet more rail chaos”.

Questions about the rail franchising system were raised last week, when the government cancelled the competition to operate rail services between London, Kent and parts of East Sussex – currently run by Southeastern.

The awarding of the West Coast Mainline route prompted Labour to renewed its call to nationalise the railways.

Shadow transport secretary Andy McDonald said: “Awarding a complex contract for both the West Coast Partnership and HS2 services to FirstGroup, a company with questions over its finances, is a gross error of judgement.

“The ghost of Chris Grayling’s rank incompetence haunts our rail services as the new Transport Secretary Grant Shapps follows his predecessor in putting private profit before passengers and the public interest.

‘Book travel as normal’

But Mr Shapps told the BBC: “Privatisation has allowed the railway to expand massively – twice as many people, twice as many journeys and record number of people travelling on our railways, so I don’t think nationalisation is the answer at all. Why would you put politicians in control?”

The Department for Transport said the new contract award was a “significant move away from the previous flawed franchising system” and would use a forecast revenue mechanism (FRM) – which offers protection against shortfalls in estimated revenues – to avoid a repeat of the issues that affected the previous East Coast Main Line franchise.

Last year, services on the East Coast Main Line were brought back under government control.

FirstGroup said that if such a system had been in use on its South Western Railway and TransPennine Express, these contracts would have remained profitable.

A spokesperson for Virgin Trains – which has operated train services for 22 years – said it would work with First Trenitalia to “ensure a seamless handover for customers, who should still book and travel as normal”.

The Department for Transport said that by December 2022, there would be 263 extra train services every week, with Motherwell set to become a major calling point for most West Coast Partnership services. Direct services from London to destinations including Llandudno and Gobowen will now be introduced, while Walsall will get its first direct InterCity services.

Subject to approval from the Office of Rail and Road, First Trenitalia will operate two trains an hour between Liverpool and London – a route that Virgin Trains had said it also hopes to run by launching a new hourly train service between the two cities from May 2021.

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Law and order: Extra £85m for CPS to tackle violent crime

Police arrest a man after an incident in Cardiff

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The Crown Prosecution Service will receive an extra £85m over the next two years, to help deal with a rise in violent crime in England and Wales.

It comes as Boris Johnson launches a review of sentencing of some dangerous and prolific offenders.

He said dangerous criminals must be taken off the streets and punishments “fit the crime” if the public was to have confidence in the justice system.

The news fuels speculation ministers are preparing for an early election.

On Sunday the prime minister promised to create an extra 10,000 new prison places and expand stop-and-search powers.

And on Monday Mr Johnson will host a round-table meeting in Downing Street with leaders from the police, probation and prison sectors.

Ahead of the meeting Mr Johnson said: “We have all seen examples of rapists and murderers let out too soon or people offending again as soon as they’re released.

“This ends now. We want them caught, locked up, punished and properly rehabilitated.”

The review, which will begin immediately, will look at whether violent and sexual offenders are serving sentences that reflect the severity of their crimes.

It will report back in the autumn.

‘Protect the public’

Under the current system, criminals sentenced to 12 months or more generally serve the first half of their time in prison and the second half “on licence” in the community, where they may be subject to recall.

Dangerous offenders can be given extended sentences, which mean they must serve two-thirds before being eligible for parole.

Justice secretary Robert Buckland said the review will focus on those violent, sexual and prolific offenders who are not currently given these extended sentences.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that Mr Johnson “wants to see prison being used appropriately to protect the public”.

But sentencing decisions should still be based on individual circumstances not “targets or numbers”, Mr Buckland said.

The incentive of early release is seen by many as critical for keeping order in prisons.

Sir David Latham, a former judge and chairman of the Parole Board for England and Wales, told BBC Radio 5 Live: “Prisons are significantly overcrowded and the risks of violence in prisons have increased very substantially over the last few years.”

Last year saw record levels of assaults on prison staff as well as a rise in self-harm by inmates.

Sir David said the way to ensure the safety of the public was by monitoring offenders after release with effective probation services. “The essence of early release is that there should be proper control over that prisoner,” he said.

But he denied that sentencing needed to be tougher. “Sentencing has in fact increased over the last 20 to 30 years quite substantially,” Sir David said.

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Reuters

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Boris Johnson and Home Secretary Priti Patel last month announced more police officers will be hired

Downing Street said the extra £85m for the CPS – which prosecutes criminal cases in England and Wales – will help staff respond to the rise in violent crime and an “explosion of digital evidence”.

Director of public prosecutions Max Hill QC said the money came at a “crucial time” for criminal justice.

In 2018-19 the CPS received £528m in government funding, according to its annual report.

The extra £85m will be paid for by the Treasury, a No 10 spokeswoman told the BBC.

Mr Hill said: “Our work is changing, and this new funding will provide the increased capacity to enable us to respond effectively to challenging trends we currently face.”

A spokesman from the CPS said the money would also help deal with the higher caseload they were anticipating as a result of Mr Johnson’s plan to recruit 20,000 more police officers.

The government’s focus on law and order will add to speculation that No 10 is preparing for an autumn general election, said BBC political correspondent Jonathan Blake.

Opposition parties warned there was no easy fix for the current rise in violent crime.

Liberal Democrat justice spokeswoman Wera Hobhouse said increasing prison sentences would merely “overcrowd prisons and waste millions of pounds”.

She said: “For years, Labour and Tory ministers have made sentences longer and longer, without any evidence that they prevent crime.

“It may sound tough, but it hasn’t made our communities any safer.”

And Labour’s shadow home secretary, Diane Abbott, said Mr Johnson was “clearing the ground” for an election, but he “doesn’t quite explain how he will pay” to deliver on his promises.

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