It pays to read the signs before leaving your car in a carpark or other private land in England: security guards can impose enormous instant fines, and enforce them by immobilizing your car with a wheel clamp. \nIn response, a British motoring body is inviting nominations for England's most offensive carpark security guard, most of whom work for small companies that specialize in wheel-clamping work. \nA clamp, sometimes dubbed a "boot," is a metal device that locks over one wheel of the car, preventing it from rolling freely. \nThe RAC Foundation said that in one recent case, a nurse's car was clamped twice when she stopped to help an elderly fall victim at a crossing. \nThe nurse had parked in a pub car park in order to help the elderly lady. On her return found that her car had been clamped. \nWhen she explained what had happened, the clamper and the owner of the pub refused to listen, clamped a second wheel and demanded ?120. The foundation is now running a search for the "worst cowboy clamper" annually. \nLast year, this dubious honor went to a clamper who allegedly immobilized a car while the driver was asleep inside, threatened some clamped motorists with large dogs and forced a pregnant woman to walk with her young child to a cash point 3km away. \nThe RAC Foundation said its files on some of the nastiest guards include clampers who threatened to hold a mother's 3-year-old daughter ransom until she collected the ?60 fee from a bank. \nA postman was clamped while delivering a parcel to his customer's front door and a hearse was clamped with a dead body in the back. \nWheel clamping on private land is not allowed in neighboring Scotland, but is permitted in England and Wales, where an authority grants licenses to the clampers. From next February, clamping without a Security Industry Authority license will become an offence. \nEdmund King, executive director of the RAC Foundation, said: "There is huge concern amongst many motorists who are often coerced into paying large amounts of money, when they have parked quite innocently. They feel they have no rights and no means of redress." \nThe foundation promotes motoring interests and works alongside the RAC, a firm that provides breakdown repairs and insurance.
PAST TACTICS: In what some see as a return to hardline strategies, the new Afghan rulers hanged the body of an alleged kidnapper from a crane as warning to criminals The Taliban hanged a dead body from a crane parked in a city square in Afghanistan on Saturday in a gruesome display that signaled the hardline movement’s return to some of its brutal tactics of the past. Taliban officials initially brought four bodies to the central square in the western city of Herat, then moved three of them to other parts of the city for public display, said Wazir Ahmad Seddiqi, who runs a pharmacy on the edge of the square. Taliban officials announced that the four were caught taking part in a kidnapping earlier on Saturday and were killed by police,
Kim Yo-jong, the influential sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, reached out to South Korea for a second time in recent days, saying Pyongyang would consider taking part in another inter-Korean summit and declaring an end to the war if Seoul adopts a less hostile policy. “I felt that the atmosphere of the South Korean public desiring to recover the inter-Korean relations from a deadlock and achieve peaceful stability as soon as possible is irresistibly strong,” Kim Yo-jong said in a statement issued by the official Korean Central News Agency. “We, too, have the same desire.” Kim’s statement follows one she
A potential lurch to the left in Germany’s election on Sunday is scaring millionaires into moving assets into Switzerland, bankers and tax lawyers say. If the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), hard-left Linke and environmentalist Greens come to power, the reintroduction of a wealth tax and a tightening of inheritance tax could be on the political agenda. “For the super-rich, this is red hot,” said a German-based tax lawyer with extensive Swiss operations. “Entrepreneurial families are highly alarmed.” The move shows how many rich people still see Switzerland as an attractive place to park wealth, despite its efforts to abolish its image as a
‘SMOKESCREEN’: An agreement to declare an end to the Korean War would be ‘of no help at all’ and used to cover up ‘US hostile policy,’ a North Korean official said The influential sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un yesterday said it was “admirable” of South Korea to propose a formal end to the Korean War, but demanded Seoul first drop its “hostile policies” towards Pyongyang. Kim Yo-jong’s remarks, carried by the state-run Korean Central News Agency, were in response to South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s recent calls for declaring an official end to the 1950-1953 conflict that ended in a truce, not a peace treaty, leaving the two sides technically at war for more than half a century. In a speech at the UN General Assembly earlier this week, Moon proposed