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Salmond and Darling cast votes in Scotland poll

Scottish National Party leader Alex Salmond and leader of the Better Together campaign Alistair Darling have voted in today's independence referendum.

Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond outside Ritchie Hall polling station in Strichen. Credit: PA Wire
Alistair Darling voted at the polling station at the Church Hill Theatre in Edinburgh Credit: PA Wire
  1. London

Arnis Zalkalns has a conviction for murder in Latvia

By Ronke Phillips: Senior Correspondent

  • Arnis Zalkalns has a conviction for murder in Latvia and was questioned about the indecent assault of a young girl, aged under 16, in 2009
  • The 2009 allegation of indecent assault was not pursued because the victim refused to give further evidence. It happened in the Ealing area of West London
  • There was no record of in the UK of Zalkalns' murder conviction. It only came to light when officers contacted Latvian police
  • Zalkalns has not used his bank accounts or mobile phone since September 3
  • Police have received more than 100 phone calls from the public
  • Arnis Zalkalns became a 'person of interest' to police on September 12 and could still be in the UK
  • The Latvian has been in the country since 2007
  • He could potentially pose a risk to the public
  • The last sighting of Zalkalns by his family was on the evening of September 3
  • This is still not a murder inquiry because there is no evidence that Alice Gross is not still alive


Voters head to polls in all corners of Scotland

From Glasgow to the Highlands, the people of Scotland are turning out in huge numbers to vote in today's independence referendum.

One of the more remote polling stations in Coulags in the Highlands. Credit: PA
A couple in Edinburgh find ways to liven up the queuing process. Credit: Reuters
Voters head to the village hall in the Highland area of Lochcarron. Credit: PA Wire

Duchess cancels Malta visit due to morning sickness

The Duchess of Cambridge will not visit Malta this weekend because she is still suffering from acute morning sickness, Kensington Palace has announced.

The Duchess of Cambridge will not travel to Malta. Credit: Chris Jackson/PA Wire/PA Images

The visit to Malta was going to be Kate's first solo overseas visit but Prince William will now take her place.

Kate has been forced to miss several recent public engagements since it was revealed the Royal couple are expecting their second child.

Her Royal Highness continues to suffer from the effects of Hyperemesis Gravidarum. The decision not to travel was taken by the Duke and Duchess on the advice of the Duchess's doctors. The Duke is honoured to represent Her Majesty The Queen on the visit, which commemorates the 50th anniversary of Malta's Independence.

– Kensington Palace spokesperson


  1. London

Latvian builder 'official suspect' in the hunt for Alice Gross

Police are treating Latvian builder Arnis Zalkalns as a suspect in the hunt for missing 14-year-old schoolgirl Alice Gross.

Detectives say Arnis Zalkalns was seen on CCTV on the day Alice disappeared cycling along Brentford Lock at 4pm, some fifteen minutes after Alice walked the same route.

Arnis Zalkalns seen on CCTV cycling along Brentford Lock Credit: Met Police
Arnis Zalkalns seen on CCTV cycling along Brentford Lock Credit: Met Police

Murdered British backpacker's family arrive in Bangkok

Family of Hannah Witheridge have travelled to Bangkok Credit: RTV

The distraught family of murdered British backpacker Hannah Witheridge have arrived in Thailand

Relatives of the 23-year-old hugged each other as they arrived at the headquarters of the Royal Thai Police in Bangkok.

Officers have so far failed to match her DNA with any of their suspects.

Her body was found alongside fellow Briton David Miller, 24,on the island of Koh Tao on Monday. Post mortem tests have showed the pair died from head injuries.

RFU sorry over use of Victoria Cross on England kit

England's rugby union governing body has apologised "to those who may have taken offence" to the use of the Victoria Cross on the national side's new playing kit.

England's new Canterbury-manufactured shirts feature Victoria Cross designs that comprise numerous small rubber grips to help deaden the impact of the ball.

The new England kit features numerous small Victoria Cross designs. Credit: PA Wire

Victoria Cross Trust chairman Gary Stapleton criticised the Rugby Football Union (RFU) for having had no contact with the organisation over using the emblem on the kit, which was officially launched earlier this week.

Stapleton said the move "touched a raw nerve with a lot of people."

In a statement, the RFU said:

We would like to apologise to those who may have taken offence with our new kit. It was certainly never our intention to cause this.

We are huge supporters of our service personnel and respect and value their support for England.

We will be contacting the Victoria Cross Trust and the Victoria Cross and George Cross Association to see how we can support their worthwhile work going forwards.

– RFU statement

The Victoria Cross, the British and Commonwealth armed forces' most prestigious medal, has only been awarded 1,354 times during its 158-year existence, most recently in 2012.

The new white England shirt will be worn for the first time when the side begin their autumn Test schedule aganist world champions New Zealand at Twickenham on November 8.

  1. Granada

Is Balotelli behind 5 figure dog's home donation?

Balotelli Credit: MEN Syndication

Mario Balotelli has apparently shown his heart is in the right place after appearing to have made a generous donation to Manchester Dogs’ Home.

The millionaire ex-City striker who now plays for Liverpool is thought to have given a five-figure sum to the home after 60 dogs were killed in a blaze a week ago today.

Staff at the dogs home suspect the dog-loving Italian is behind the generous handout - and have revealed how the Premier League star previously volunteered for their charity during his time at Manchester City.

Madcap Mario offered his free time walking abandoned dogs for the Harpurhey home while his pet pooch was in quarantine in Italy ahead of a move to Manchester. Read more here.

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