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NSPCC: Police can only work within budgets to tackle abuse

The NSPCC has said it is an "uncomfortable truth" that police cannot hope to pursue every person who looks at indecent images of children.

Keith Bristow, the head of the National Crime Agency, said there was no way his officers could go after all 50,000 suspects and they have to focus on the "greatest risks".

Jon Brown, NSPCC lead for tackling sexual abuse, said: "Mr Bristow reveals an uncomfortable truth about the difficult decisions officers face daily in identifying and pursuing offenders. It's true that the police can only do what they can with the budgets available to them."

"The Government must make tackling this vile trade a priority in the funding available to the NCA and at a local force level," Mr Brown added.

Foreign Secretary welcomes new Syria sanctions

The Foreign Secretary has welcomed fresh EU sanctions against the Syrian regime, describing President Assad as the "cause of instability and conflict" in the country.

Philip Hammond and European counterparts agreed the measures at a meeting in Brussels today.

Another 18 individuals and entities, including some suspected of supplying the administration with oil, will be subjected to restrictions.

Philip Hammond welcomed the new round of sanctions. Credit: Leon Neal/PA Wire

Among those targeted by the sanctions is a "notorious" military commander who ordered nerve gas attacks that killed hundreds of civilians.

"Sanctions are a key part of our strategy for weakening the regime and limiting its ability to perpetrate more barbaric acts against the Syrian people," Mr Hammond said.

Indiana murders suspect told police he 'messed up'

The man suspected of murdering seven women in the US state of Indiana told police he had "messed up" by killing one of his victims in a motel.

Darren Deon Vann reportedly arranged to meet his victim at Motel 6 in the city of Hammond through a 'pay for prostitution service', Hammond police chief John Doughty said.

Hammond police chief John Doughty speaking to reporters. Credit: RTV

An acquaintance of the victim became suspicious after receiving strange messages from her phone.

She then went to the motel and discovered the body, after which she gave police a phone number leading them to Vann.

Mr Doughty said Vann had co-operated with police and was seeking a deal with prosecutors, though he would not elaborate on what the deal was.

Smoke rises over Kobani after latest air strikes

Huge explosions were seen over the Syrian town of Kobani today as air strikes against Islamic State targets continued.

US-led air strikes have helped stop the advance of IS militants. Credit: Reuters
Smoke rises over the Syrian town of Kobani after an air strike. Credit: Reuters
The US air-dropped arms to help Kurdish fighters for the first time. Credit: Reuters


Mayor: Suspect is 'what I would label a serial killer'

The Mayor of the town of Hammond in Indiana has said the man arrested by police over the killings of seven women "is what I would label a serial killer".

A police file photo of Darren Deon Vann. Credit: Reuters/Lake County Sheriff

Writing on Facebook, Thomas McDermott Jr said Darren Deon Vann was also a convicted sex offender.

"Great job to the Hammond Police on getting this sexual predator off the Region streets," McDermott added.

Clegg: 'Compassionate Conservatism is dead or dying'

The panel on tonight's Agenda - Nikita Lalwani, Nick Clegg, Julia Hartley-Brewer and Dom Joly. Credit: The Agenda

Nick Clegg has said that the Budget is one the biggest questions facing politicians at the moment and that: "compassionate Conservativism is dead or dying."

Speaking on The Agenda with Tom Bradby, the Deputy Prime Minister said:

One of the big question for all politicians my party included to explain is as you have to carry on balancing the books of whoever is in power - how do you do that as fairly as possible?

The Conservatives have taken really quite a radical approach. ..They have said they won't ask anyone for a single extra penny in tax to start balancing the books. The only people who will pay the extra burden to fill the black hole in the public finances are the working age poor and the public services they rely on. Now I think that is socially unsustainable and it's very difficult to justify and it doesn't make much economic sense either.

– Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister

Other guests on tonight’s programme are comedian Dom Joly, broadcaster and columnist Julia Hartley-Brewer and novelist Nikita Lalwani.

The Agenda with Tom Bradby to be broadcast on ITV at 10.35pm tonight.

Greens lead Lib Dems in new Lord Ashcroft poll

The Greens have overtaken the Liberal Democrats in the latest poll from Tory peer Lord Ashcroft.

Green Party leader Natalie Bennett. Credit: Max Nash/PA Wire

The survey put the Greens on a new high of 8%, just ahead of Nick Clegg's party on 7%.

The telephone poll of 1,000 adults gave Labour a three-point lead over the Tories, 31% to 28%, with Ukip on 18%.

'Not all paedophiles face justice', crime chief admits

Not all suspected paedophiles can be brought to justice, the head of the National Crime Agency (NCA) has admitted.

NCA director general Keith Bristow said it was "uncomfortable" to acknowledge that some of the 50,000 people who access indecent images of children online will not face prosecution.

Keith Bristow said NCA officers would focus on suspects posing the 'greatest risk'. Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Mr Bristow said: "I don't think I can be more candid than say, if there are 50,000 people involved in this particularly horrible type of criminality, I don't believe that all 50,000 will end up in the criminal justice system being brought to justice."

He argued the NCA's job was to "focus on the greatest risk and tackle those people".

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