All posts by tomparfittcityuniversity

Shamed Sepp Blatter loses appeal against ban from football

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Sepp Blatter has lost his appeal against his six-year ban [FLICKR]
Former Fifa president Sepp Blatter has lost his appeal against his six-year ban from football.

The 80-year-old hoped the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) would overturn the ban, which was imposed last December.

But his appeal was dismissed this afternoon.

Blatter was last year found to have made a £1.3million “disloyal payment” to ex-Uefa boss Michel Platini.

Both deny wrongdoing, but CAS described the payment as “an undue gift” with “no contractual basis”.

Responding to today’s decision, Blatter said:

No other verdict could be expected.

He added: “I have to accept this decision. I have experienced much in my 41 years in Fifa. I mostly learned that you can win in sport, but you can also lose.”

The payment is also being looked into by Swiss prosecutors.

Theresa May vows to ‘work closely’ with Italy after Renzi steps down

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Theresa May speaking at a press conference with Matteo Renzi this summer [FLICKR]
Britain will “work closely” with Italy’s next leader after the dramatic resignation of Matteo Renzi, Downing Street has said.

Renzi stepped down this morning after Italians rejected his plans for constitutional reform in a referendum.

Theresa May’s spokesman said the Prime Minister would seek to speak with Mr Renzi over the coming days.

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The Italian prime minister stepped down this morning [CREATIVE COMMONS]
But she stressed the outcome of the vote was “a decision for the Italian people”.

Mrs May visited Rome just days after entering Downing Street in May.

Her spokesman said: “The Prime Minister has had good relations with Matteo Renzi since she took office.

Her spokesman said: “The Prime Minister has had good relations with Matteo Renzi since she took office.

“She was appreciative of the way she was welcomed in Rome and the work we have done together in previous years on an ambitious programme of reform.

“Now we look to the future and we will want to work closely with the Italian government.”

In an emotional televised address last night, Renzi accepted full responsibility for the “extraordinarily clear” defeat.

The 41-year-old added:

The experience of my government ends here.

It is not yet clear who will replace him, but his departure has plunged the European Union into further turmoil following June’s Brexit vote.

Breaking news: Europe’s Mars probe to launch in 2020

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Europe’s Mars probe will go ahead as planned in 2020

Europe’s attempt to search for life on Mars will launch as planned in 2020 despite fears of soaring costs, it has been confirmed.

Members of the European Space Agency (Esa) agreed to stump up the extra £370 million needed to ensure the future of ExoMars Rover.

European science ministers decided to back the mission at a major meeting in Lucerne, Switzerland.

The space agency’s chief Jan Woerner, said: “We need to work hard because it’s not only some rover, we have the payloads from different sources – all of this has to pack together.

“It’s not an easy thing, but we are confident that we will succeed.”

You can read more about the possibility of humans moving to Mars on City Beat.

Exclusive: BBC spends thousands on alcohol for boozy staff parties

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The BBC has spent £115,000 on alcohol since 2012, City Beat can reveal [CREATIVE COMMONS]
The BBC has spent more than £115,000 of taxpayers’ cash on alcohol in the past three years, it can be revealed.

Data obtained by City Beat shows the cash-strapped corporation has splurged almost £80,000 on wine since 2012.

Broadcasting bosses also spent £32,000 on wine, while the bill for spirits over the same time period came to £2,700.

They included bottles of whisky Glenmorangie – at £37.50 each – and high-end cognac Remy Martin at £35 each.

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The figures were released under Freedom of Information legislation [WIKIPEDIA]
The figures, which were released under Freedom of Information legislation, have fallen over the past three years.

John O’Connell, head of the Taxpayers’ Alliance pressure group said: “It is heartening to see that the BBC’s alcohol bill has been steadily going down.

“It is important to keep costs as low as possible.”

And a BBC spokesman said: “The BBC has clear policies that drinks may only purchased where there is an appropriate business purpose such as production hospitality for guests and costs have come down by 40 per cent compared to this time last year.”

7 things you need to know about the Brexit court challenge

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The Government is appealing against the High Court decision over Article 50 [CREATIVE COMMONS]
On Monday, Theresa May faces her biggest challenge yet on Brexit. The Supreme Court will hear the Government’s appeal against the High Court ruling stating that MPs must approve the UK’s exit from the EU.

Here are seven things you need to know about the dramatic legal challenge.

1. The appeal will be heard over four days, starting on Monday, with the court expected to make a decision at the start of January.

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A Supreme Court defeat would be hugely embarrassing for PM Theresa May [FLICKR]
2. If the Government loses, which looks likely, Theresa May’s bid to trigger Article 50 by the end of March could lie in tatters. Legal expert professor Michael Zander believes the High Court’s “unanimous” ruling will not be overturned, adding:

In my view, the Government could be looking at losing 11-0.

3. The case will be heard by all 11 of the Supreme Court’s justices, something that has never happened before. Cases are usually heard by only four or five justices.

WATCH: Brexit campaigner Nigel Farage clashes with lawyer Gina Miller

4. The Attorney General, Jeremy Wright QC, will introduce the Government’s appeal before handing over to an independent lawyer, James Eadie QC.

5. The lead claimant is Gina Miller, a 51-year-old investment fund manager. She has since faced a torrent of abuse on social media by Brexit supporters, and claims she has spent £60,000 on security measures to protect her and her family.

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The hearing at the Supreme Court will be streamed online [WIKIPEDIA]
6. The case could be transferred to the European Court of Justice (ECJ). Eleanor Sharpston, Britain’s judge on the ECJ, has said: “The interpretation of [Article 50] is a matter for this court [the ECJ].”

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Experts have said the case could be referred to the European Court of Justice [WIKIPEDIA]
7. The proceedings will be streamed live on the Supreme Court website. Transcripts will also be available on the site.

Even if the Government loses the appeal, it is widely expected that the vast majority of MPs will vote to trigger Article 50 – even if they campaigned to Remain in the EU. But make no mistake; it would be hugely embarrassing for Mrs May and David Davis, the Brexit Secretary, who want to keep their EU withdrawal schedule on track.