Briefs, November 14, 2012

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 14 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 14 November, 2012, 3:52am

Outrage in Britain as cleric freed from jail

LONDON - Radical Islamist cleric Abu Qatada has been freed from prison after a court ruled that he could not be deported from Britain to Jordan to face terrorism charges. British officials and media reacted with outrage at the judge's decision, Clintonwith The Daily Telegraph calling it "a mockery of justice". "We strongly disagree with the court ruling. We are going to challenge it, we are going to take it to appeal," ITV television reported Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg as saying. AFP

Physicist convicted of espionage is paroled

MOSCOW - A Russian court paroled a physicist convicted of spying for China and jailed for 14 years in 2004 in a case criticised by human rights campaigners during President Vladimir Putin's first term. Valentin Danilov, now in his 60s, is expected to be freed in 10 days. Rights activists said the satellite technology data he passed to China was declassified and the case was politically motivated. He will remain on parole for the rest of his term, which Fomushina said amounted to just over three years and two months. Reuters

Ex-president's aide jailed in vote racket

BRASILIA - Brazil's supreme court sentenced former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's ex-chief of staff to nearly 11 years in prison for his role in a vote-buying scheme. Jose Dirceu, who was the chief of staff from 2003 to 2005 and a top leader of the ruling Workers' Party (PT), was found guilty in October of running the operation to bribe lawmakers during Lula's first term. The court also fined him US$350,000. AFP

Cattle raiders kill 42 policemen in ambush

NAIROBI - Suspected cattle thieves hid on a high hill and ambushed and killed at least 42 police officers pursuing them over the weekend in northwestern Kenya. The police were killed over the weekend after being ambushed by bandits from the Turkana region who are suspected to have stolen another tribe's cattle. Nine other officers are recovering in hospital from their wounds, police said. AFP

Ex-bishop arrested in sex abuse investigation

LONDON - A retired Church of England bishop was one of two clergymen arrested by police investigating allegations of sex abuse dating back three decades. Peter Ball, 80, the former bishop of Lewes and Gloucester, is being held on suspicion of abusing eight boys and young men in the late 1980s and 1990s. A 67-year-old retired priest, Vickery House, was also detained on suspicion of separate sex offences against two teenage boys between 1981 and 1983, Sussex Police said. AFP