Police probe death of unborn baby after woman has illegal ‘abortion by post’ at 28 weeks – four weeks past limit – The Sun

POLICE are probing the death of an unborn baby after a woman took “pills by post” abortion drugs while 28 weeks pregnant.

They were mailed under a new “home abortion” scheme set up after laws were relaxed because of the pandemic.

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But she was already four weeks past the legal 24-week termination limit — and 18 weeks past a new ten-week limit for medical ­abortions at home under Covid-19 regulations. Her baby was stillborn.

Babies born prematurely at 28 weeks typically have a 90 per cent chance of survival.

The British Pregnancy Advisory Service (Bpas), which runs the “pills by post” service, has confirmed it is investigating the case, plus eight more where women were beyond the ten-week limit.

A Midlands coroner is investigating the 28-week death and police have also been informed.

Last night a whistleblower said: “The ‘pills by post’ system has been brought in but a 40-minute phone call can never be the same as a proper medical consultation.

“There needs to be a proper investigation to find out just what went wrong.”

Under the scheme, a woman must consult a trained nurse or midwife in a 40-minute phone or video chat to get a prescription, with the pills mailed out.

But critics have warned the system is ripe for abuse or error.

How the rules were changed

RULES brought in last month mean women can now have a medical abortion at home up until week ten of pregnancy.

But they must consult a medic over the phone or video chat to get a prescription, with the pills sent by post.

Previously, abortions in England could be carried out only in a hospital, by a specialist provider or by a licensed clinic.

They also had to be approved by two doctors.

The new law lasts for two years under Covid-19 measures.

And pro-life groups have claimed abortion rights campaigners have taken “advantage of this crisis” to lobby for the “backdoor policy”.

Charity Bpas typically carries out 60,000 abortions each year in the UK, with around 97 per cent referred to them from the NHS.

The new home abortions have been allowed since March 31 because of the coronavirus crisis.

It was estimated 44,000 women would need abortions in the 12 weeks from April 1.

Bpas said it has issued more than 8,000 “pills by post” treatments since the scheme began.

Medical abortions require two pills — mifepristone and misoprostol. Before the change in the law, which has a time limit of two years, abortions in England could happen only in a hospital, licensed clinic or at a specialist provider.

Two doctors would also need to certify it did not breach the terms of the 1967 Abortion Act.

Last night Clare Murphy, of Bpas, said: “The swift establishment of a telemedical early medical abortion service at the start of this crisis has been a phenomenal achievement in women’s healthcare, enabling women to safely access the care they need at home.

“It has meant women have been able to end pregnancies at the ­earliest gestations, protecting their health and those around them by removing the need to travel long distances to clinics where social distancing is simply not possible.

“For women who are and remain unable to leave their homes due to underlying health conditions or coercive relationships, this scheme has quite simply been life-saving.

“We are aware of a vanishingly small number of pregnancies which were treated beyond the ten week gestational band, with just one over 24 weeks.”


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Police discover 'sophisticated' cannabis farm hidden inside two semis

Police discover ‘sophisticated’ cannabis farm hidden inside two £250,000 semi-detached homes while investigating gang attack

  • Officers inadvertently came across the cannabis farm in Crumpsall, Manchester 
  • They uncovered 110 marijuana plants with a street value of up to £40,000
  • Albanian immigrant jailed for 12 months after he admitted producing cannabis

Police stumbled on a cannabis farm with an estimated street value of up to £40,000 being cultivated inside two neighbouring suburban semis while investigating a gang attack.

Officers in Crumpsall, Manchester rushed to the scene following reports a man was being beaten up in the street by four masked attackers.

But when they arrived to find the assailants and victim had vanished, they began knocking on doors to speak to witnesses.

They then inadvertently uncovered 110 marijuana plants being grown across various rooms in the two adjoining three-bedroomed semi-detached properties.

Police stumbled on a cannabis farm (pictured) with a street value of up to £40,000 being cultivated inside two neighbouring suburban semis while investigating a gang attack

Hydroponic equipment had been used to help grow the drug and both houses had been fitted with an illicit electricity supply to avoid large energy bills.

Officers arrested an Albanian immigrant hired to look the factory as he hid in a bedroom of one of the properties.

The exact valuation of the cannabis farm was not possible but the plants could have yielded £41,000 worth of cannabis depending on the strength of the drug.

At Manchester Crown Court, Endri Velaj, 28, was jailed for 12 months after he admitted producing cannabis. He will face deportation from the UK after his release from jail.

Albanian immigrant Endri Velaj, 28, (pictured) was jailed for 12 months after he admitted producing cannabis

The raid occurred last March 4 after police got a 999 call about the attack in Holland Road where semis are worth are around £250,000 each.

Prosecutor Kate Gaskell said: ‘The reports were of a man being attacked outside Number 42 by four unknown men in balaclavas. Police attended the address and there was no answer when they knocked at the door.

‘But they then gained entry through a rear door and found a cannabis farm inside.

‘No people were present in the property and police began to make house to house inquiries and attended Number 40, the adjoining semi-detached property and gained access through a rear insecure door.

‘They found a cannabis farm spread across four rooms and the defendant was found in the front upstairs bedroom.

The exact valuation of the cannabis farm was not possible but the plants could have yielded £41,000 worth of cannabis depending on the strength of the drug

‘Officers also seized £450 cash and two mobile phones. In all 110 plants were found at the address as well as equipment needed to enable cannabis production. The electricity in the property had been bypassed.

‘An exact valuation was not possible due to deterioration to the plants. However, having looked at similar set-ups in the past an estimated 1.65kg-4.12kg was estimated based on plants that were mature and flowering. There were 55 plants in the living room.

‘A valuation statement was made which says there were different strains of cannabis. In lower potency strains 1.65kg can be valued at £3,000-£5.000 and 4.12kg would be worth £12,000 to £20,000.

‘In higher potency strains 1.65kg would be worth £6,000 to £8,000 and 4.12kg would be worth between £24,000 and £32,000. The officer said if these were street deals they could be worth between £16,500 and £41,200.

Pictured the adjoining semis where the cannabis farm was being cultivated in Manchester

‘The operation was capable of producing a significant amount of drugs for commercial use which suggests a degree of sophistication and awareness by the defendant of the scale of this and a level of trust was afforded to him.’

In mitigation defence barrister Michael Barmer said: ‘The defendant was made aware that the defence of modern slavery may be available to him but he was unwilling to help the authorities for fear of reprisals.

‘He has expressed willingness to return to Albania as soon as possible. He had a degree of vulnerability which could be exploited by a criminal gang.

‘He said he had been promised legitimate work and didn’t want to refuse it as he was worried about his mother and sister in Albania.

‘The money he was given was given to him by gang masters for food and supplies and was supposed to last him two months. He has no hand in bypassing the electricity and it was set up like that.’

Sentencing, Judge Anthony Cross QC told Velaj: ‘This was a sophisticated operation in which the electricity had been bypassed and a significant amount of cannabis was grown.

‘However, I accept you had a lesser role in this. While I do not accept you were a modern slave I do accept you were more vulnerable to threats of violence.’

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Police arrest man on suspicion of murder after dead body is found in a pub – The Sun

A MURDER investigation has been launched after a man was found dead at a pub on Sunday.

Officers were called to The Swiss Bell, in Braintree, Essex, at 8.45am following reports a body had been found.

Several emergency service vehicles were at the scene.

Pictures posted on social media appeared to show armed officers also present.

The pub was cordoned off along with several other properties and cops were on guard.

Essex Police said that a man had been arrested on suspicion of murder and was in custody.

A spokesman for Essex Police said: "Detectives have started a murder investigation following the death of a man in Braintree.

"We were called at 8.45am this morning, Sunday, May 17.

"Reports that a man had been found dead at the Swiss Bell pub, Mountbatten Road.

"A man was arrested and remains in custody."

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US police officer kills man who threw rocks at him in street

A man was shot dead after he threw rocks at a police officer and then charged at him, according to US officials.

A sheriff’s deputy in Georgia killed Yassin Mohamed, 47, near the town of Claxton on Saturday.

Police were called just after midnight to reports of a man walking in the middle of a road and an Evans County sheriff’s deputy arrived to find Mohamed.

When he tried to speak Mohamed, investigators said he began throwing rocks, hitting the officer once. 

He then charged at the policeman with a larger rock and the unnamed deputy shot him.

Mohamed died before he could be taken to a hospital and his body was transferred to the nearest Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) crime lab for a post-mortem examination.

The deputy was not seriously injured.

The GBI said officers ‘had several encounters with him (Mohamed) over the previous 12 hours’.

The GBI added it was examining the shooting and the investigation will be turned over to the district attorney for review once completed, with a prosecutor to then decide whether to file charges.

It is the 38th officer-involved shooting the GBI has been asked to investigate so far this year.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at [email protected] For more stories like this, check our news page.

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Police cadet, 14, praised for making TikTok film about domestic abuse

Police cadet, 14, who made a TikTok video – in which she’s bruised and crying – to show abuse victims how to make a ‘silent’ 999 call is praised after it gets more than 100,000 views

  • Cleveland police cadet Kaitlyn McGoldrick, 14, is the star of a TikTok video made  to help young people feeling vulnerable to domestic abuse during lockdown
  • Teen seen in the short video appearing with bruises painted on her face, talking to an operator about how domestic abuse victims can make a silent 999 call 
  • She told Sky News the harrowing subject matter didn’t face her because she wanted to help explain how people could get help in abusive situations 
  • The clip has already been viewed more than 100,000 times on social media 

A young police cadet has starred in a TikTok video to help young people feeling vulnerable to domestic abuse during lockdown get help. 

Kaitlyn McGoldrick, 14, from Cleveland, in north east England, stars in two short videos illustrating how domestic abuse victims can make a ‘silent’ 999 call – to get help without speaking on the phone. 

McGoldrick appears wearing bruises on her skin in the video and says she wasn’t deterred by the difficult subject matter because she wanted to help people know they could still access help in abusive situations.

Scroll down for video 

Cleveland police cadet Kaitlyn McGoldrick, 14, from north-east England is the star of two new TikTok videos which aim to help young people feeling vulnerable to domestic abuse during lockdown access help

The videos see McGoldrick appearing upset and wearing fake bruises as she shows how it’s possible to make a ‘silent’ 999 call without speaking by pressing 55, which lets operators know that it’s not possible to talk

Speaking to Sky News this morning, McGoldrick said that she hoped her video – using a social media platform popular with fellow teenagers – would help get the information on silent calls to people at risk from domestic abuse 

The clip has already been viewed more than 100,000 times on social media.  

Speaking to Kay Burley on Sky News, Kaitlyn McGoldrick said she was unfazed by the harrowing topic of domestic violence because she knew it could help others

She said: ‘I feel proper proud, all the comments that we’re getting shows that it does help people.’ 

McGoldrick added: ‘Many people have said that when it was happening to them they wish there was something like this.’  

The video details the police’s ‘silent call’ which enables people to call the emergency services without speaking by pressing 55, which prompts an operator 

Silent call Dial 999, if you can’t talk press 55 and that gives the operator – there’ll then ask questions. 

Positive response: The teenager said she’s had lots of messages thanking her for appearing in the video

The police cadet used make-up to create fake bruises on her skin ahead of filming the video

Last week, ministers unveiled a £76million package for domestic violence victims as they admitted the coronavirus lockdown is making it harder for people to seek help.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick announced the funding as he took the daily Downing Street press briefing, saying the government would not ignore the ‘reality’ of what many vulnerable individuals face during the crisis.

He said victims of domestic abuse will get priority access to local housing, and money will be channelled to charities.

Declaring there would be £76million of ‘new funding’ for victims of domestic violence, Mr Jenrick said: ‘For some in our society these measures involve sacrifices that none of us would wish anyone to bear.

‘For victims of domestic abuse it means being trapped in a nightmare.

‘The true evil of domestic abuse is that it leaves vulnerable people including children living in fear in the very place where they should feel most safe and secure: inside their own home.’

Mr Jenrick said the Government’s Domestic Abuse Bill, which had its second reading in Parliament last week, would create ‘the first ever legal definition of domestic abuse’.

He said that through the Bill, the Government would ‘be ensuring that the victims of domestic violence get the priority need status that they need to access to local housing services much more easily’.

He added: ‘This is a fully-funded commitment which will mean that no victim of domestic violence has to make the unbearable choice between staying somewhere that they know is unsafe or becoming homeless.’

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick announced the funding as he took the daily Downing Street press briefing, saying the government would not ignore the ‘reality’ of what many vulnerable individuals face during the crisis

He said the Government had already announced an extra £15million to strengthen its support, with an extra £16million going directly to refuge services.

‘This additional support will ensure more safe spaces and accommodation for survivors of domestic abuse and their children, and the recruitment of additional councillors for victims of sexual violence.’

He added that the funding will also help frontline charities to offer virtual ways to assist those in need, including phone-based services.

Mr Jenrick said: ‘We know that some refuges have had to reduce, or even to cancel the services that they would want to provide during the pandemic.

‘This funding will help them to meet the challenges posed in this national emergency, and to continue to help those that desperately need support.’ 

Call the 24-hour National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 

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Police quiz murder suspect after 79-year-old man is found dead

Detectives quiz murder suspect, 42 after 79-year-old man is found dead with head injury in north London

  • Anthony Rooks, 79,  was found at his home in Holloway, north London on Monday
  • He was pronounced dead at the scene of the property in Dalmeny Road
  • Police said the victim and the 42-year-old suspect were known to each other
  • It is 13th London murder since the start of the coronavirus lockdown
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

A 42-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder after a pensioner was found dead.

Anthony Rooks, 79, was discovered collapsed with a head injury at a property in Dalmeny Road, Holloway, north London at around 7.20pm on Monday.

An ambulance crew was called but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police are investigating a murder carried out on Dalmeny Road in Holloway, north London

Police said the victim and the suspect were known to each other, but that investigators are keeping an open mind as to motive.

A post-mortem examination will be held on Thursday.

Anyone with information can call police on 020 8358 0100, or to remain anonymous contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online.

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Met Police arrests 45 suspected online paedophiles in lockdown

Met Police arrests 45 suspected online paedophiles in first four weeks of lockdown and rescue nearly 100 children from sex abuse amid fears numbers will surge in coming months

  • Officers from Met Police arrested 45 suspects and safeguarded 92 children 
  • Law enforcers carried out 68 raids in month from March 23 amid lockdown 
  • Recorded crimes remained stable but force expects numbers to rise in future
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Metropolitan Police investigators have arrested 45 suspected online paedophiles and safeguarded nearly 100 children since the coronavirus lockdown began. 

Officers from the online child abuse and exploitation unit detained dozens of suspects and safeguarded 92 children in the first four weeks of lockdown.

Law enforcers carried out 68 raids in the month from March 23, and on average launched 10 new live investigations each week.

The number of recorded crimes linked to child abuse has so far remained level with the months prior to lockdown, but the force said it expects numbers to rise in the coming months. 

Pictured: An online child abuse and exploitation unit officer searching a suspect’s address

It is still receiving an average of 50 reports per week related to images of sexual abuse from the National Crime Agency. 

Detective Superintendent Helen Flanagan said: ‘The internet can be a great space for young people to connect, socialise and learn – but it is also used by offenders as a place to engage with children and commit serious offences – grooming, abuse, and other serious harm.

‘The restrictions have led to a huge growth in internet use, including by children doing school work or occupying themselves while parents and carers are busy – and inevitably there are a greater number of sexual predators online looking to target and groom young people.’

She explained that although figures have not yet increased, the force is anticipating a rise later in the year due to the impact stay-at-home measures have had on internet use. 

Officers believe any increase in offending taking place now will not be reflected in official figures for months. 

Ms Flanagan added: ‘Online offenders can consider themselves less harmful than “real life” abusers as they hide behind a screen, but there is a vulnerable child at the heart of every indecent image or video and by viewing and distributing these, the abuse is repeated over and over again.’     

Pictured: Police officers in a patrol car in Greenwich Park, London on May 2 as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus

Pictured: Police officers on horses speak to Britons in Victoria Park on May 3 amid lockdown

A number of police forces have warned of the potential risks to children who may be using the internet more during the coronavirus lockdown, which was announced by the Government on March 23. 

Thames Valley Police said it had seen a 147 per cent rise in the number of reports of online child abuse in March compared with the same period last year. 

Ms Flanagan said parents should make sure they use safety features on devices including parental controls, age restrictions and monitoring functions.

She added: ‘If your child starts to use the internet in a different way, try to get an understanding of why – are their peers using the same apps, or are they being coerced to talk to strangers in a way they are uncomfortable with? 

‘A change in behaviour can be an indication that something is wrong.’

Met figures showed that the number of offences linked to accessing child abuse images online rose by 130 per cent between 2016 and 2019.

Figures for the first three months of 2020 have so far remained level with 2019, at around 180 per month, but this is expected to rise.

Donald Findlater, chief executive of child abuse prevention charity the Lucy Faithfull Foundation, said: ‘We have seen an increase in the use of pornographic sites because of isolation measures and we know this can be a precursor for some men with addictions to move into illegal child abuse material.

‘Parents can help in tackling this and think about what their children are doing when they are being quiet in their rooms, because that lack of supervision can make them more vulnerable online.’

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