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Brothers jailed for life for brutal murder

Two brothers convicted of murdering a hard-working newsagent as he headed to work in Southampton in the early hours of the morning have been jailed for life.

Jonathan McKinley, 23, and Samuel McKinley, 25, will both serve at least 28 years behind bars before being eligible for parole over the killing of Choudhry Zishan, a court official confirmed. Cary Johnston reports.

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Statement from family of cyclist killed in crash

Bethany Mackie has been jailed for five years Credit: Kent Police

A teenage motorist who caused the death of a charity cyclist on the Old Thanet Way earlier this year has been jailed for five years.

Bethany Mackie, 18, of Beltinge Road in Herne Bay, was sentenced at Canterbury Crown Court on Friday 19 December, having previously pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, and driving with excess alcohol.

Her Peugeot 206 collided with cyclist Christian Smith near Chestfield, Whitstable, at 4am on Saturday 22 March.

"The last eight months have been incredibly difficult and I hope after today that myself and my children will be able to start looking forward.

I would not have made it through this time without the amazing support of my family and friends, for which I will always be thankful.

I would also like to thank Kent Police for treating me with such kindness and consideration.

I thank everyone in advance for continuing to respect our privacy."

– Katie Smith, wife of Christian Smith

Family's reaction after killers jailed for life

Following the brothers' convictions, relatives of Mr Zishan paid tribute, describing him as someone who "wouldn't hurt a fly".

His family said the McKinleys deserved to spend the rest of their lives behind bars to protect other innocents.

Mr Zishan's younger brother, Ali Fayyaz, 32, said: "He looked after everyone, his whole family, friends, relatives.

"He was very hard-working and was always thinking of the future. He never really cared about money. He respected the elderly and youngsters."

Mr Zishan's older sister, Tayyaba Iqbal, said: "He was my best friend. There are four sisters and two brothers. He was everything to me. He was close to my heart.

"He was very caring. He never thought of himself, he thinks of others. He never said no to anyone, he always said yes."

"He wouldn't hurt a fly. I just wish he had been able to save himself," added Mrs Iqbal, of Buckthorn Close, Totton.

She said the family was still reeling from his death.

"We cannot even think of doing anything without him, especially my mother."

The family said they found it hard to put into words their thoughts on the McKinleys.

Mr Fayyaz, of Eastleigh High Street, said: "They should spend their whole life in prison. At least then other people will be safe."

Zafar Iqbal, his brother-in-law, said: "He was a saint. He was even looking after an elderly neighbour on Eastleigh High Street.

"He said 'She is a neighbour, we need to help each other'. He never said no, that was not a word in his dictionary. He was a great gentleman."

Woman shoplifts hundreds of pounds worth of goods

Police want to speak to this woman over a series of shoplifting incidents at stores in Crowborough. Credit: Sussex Police

Police want to speak to her over a series of shoplifting incidents at stores in Crowborough.

At about 3pm on 7 November a woman was seen stealing 11 black rectangular Ted Baker fragrance sets worth £176 from Boots in High Street, Crowborough.

At 4.30pm on 27 November the same woman was recorded on CCTV leaving The Original Factory Shop in the Fernbank Shopping Centre in the town with eight hooded tops worth £280.

On 27 November she was again filmed at Boots in High Street, this time taking two Ted Baker eau de toilette gift sets, four Ted Baker wash bag sets, three For Her fragrance sets and a One Direction fragrance set, worth a total of £178.

In each case the items were put into an orange Superdry bag before the woman left the shop without paying for them.

Anyone with information should email 101@sussex.pnn.police.uk quoting serial 1217 of 17/11, call 101 or contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Rail delays hit airport passengers

Rail delays have led to hold-ups for passengers heading for Gatwick and Stansted Airports.

For Gatwick-bound travellers, there were problems for the third day running due to, initially, signalling problems at Burgess Hill in West Sussex and then staff shortages on the Thameslink and Great Northern routes.

Those travelling towards Stansted were delayed by a signal problem at the Essex airport's rail station around lunchtime.

There were other delays during the morning rush-hour.

South West Trains' passengers were held up by a broken-down train at Wimbledon in south-west London, while a signalling problem near Canley in the West Midlands led to delays to services run by the CrossCountry, London Midland and Virgin Trains companies.

In Kent and East Sussex, signalling problems between Ashford International and Rye caused hold-ups.

Travellers on Thameslink and Great Northern routes were warned to expect short-notice cancellations, delays and alterations to services owing to the staff shortages.

Govia Thameslink Railway chief executive Charles Horton apologised to passengers.

He said: "Regrettably, despite our best efforts, some services have been cancelled because we have not had enough drivers for all our rail services, especially given the essential training we are undertaking at the moment to deliver Thameslink Programme works.

"We inherited this issue when we took over the franchise in September and we are determined to address it. Thank you for your patience and please accept our apologies. We are determined to make things better."

Tweeting passengers appeared less than impressed. Aran Beedham said the Thameslink situation was "now descending into a farce" while a tweet under the title Trainslate spoke of "the ridiculous driver-shortage excuse".

Candy Cane Staiano tweeted: "Thameslink (formerly run by equally rubbish First Capital Connect) your train service has been shocking this week! Hang your head in shame.

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Sevenoaks man convicted of child sexual abuse

A man from Sevenoaks has been jailed for four years for sexually abusing a teenage boy.

Paul Judges, who's 49 and lived in Caxton Close in Hartley in Kent, took indecent photographs of his victim. Police then found these images on his computer, along with photographs of other children.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Donna Read said: "I hope this sentencing brings some closure to those affected by his crimes, who have shown tremendous courage in coming forward and supporting this prosecution."

Paul Judges, convicted of sexually abusing a child Credit: Kent Police
  1. West Country (E)

Experts slam Stonehenge tunnel plan

There are fears the tunnel past Stonehenge could create problems for archaeologists Credit: David Davies/PA Archive

Experts have hit out at plans for a 1.8 mile tunnel past Stonehenge, warning it could damage the oldest encampment discovered near the stones.

Charcoal dug up from the Mesolithic encampment at Blick Mead in the World Heritage Site, around one and a half miles from the stones, has been tested and found to date back to around 4,000 BC, archaeologists said.

A dig by the University of Buckingham has also unearthed evidence of possible structures, but more investigation is needed to see what the site contains. There is also evidence of feasting, including flints and giant bulls known as aurochs, the experts said.

But they warn that the chance to find out about the earliest chapter of Britain's history could be damaged by the plans for a tunnel through the World Heritage Site as part of efforts to relieve the A303 bottleneck at Stonehenge.

The two billion pound scheme would see the road put into a dual carriageway tunnel past Stonehenge, improving congestion and the setting of the stones - giving the public greater access to the wider prehistoric landscape and benefiting wildlife, supporters say.

But archaeologist David Jaques, who made the discovery of the encampment, said: "The Prime Minister is interested in re-election in 140 days - we are interested in discovering how our ancestors lived six thousand years ago."

He added: "Blick Mead could explain what archaeologists have been searching for for centuries - an answer to the story of Stonehenge's past.

"But our chance to find out about the earliest chapter of Britain's history could be wrecked if the tunnel goes ahead."

White Christmas is looking 'unlikely'....for now

White Christmas is looking unlikely at the moment Credit: PA

A white Christmas across the UK is looking unlikely for now, but severe weather warnings are in place over the weekend.

Met Office meteorologist Mark Wilson said that while any snow that falls will be "restricted to high ground in the north", he added: "It's still six days away so it could change."

The Met Office currently has severe weather warnings in place through to Monday.

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