Sun, Feb 22, 2009 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■GERMANY

UK soldier steals tanks

Police say one joyride in a light tank wasn’t enough for a drunken British soldier. Police in Celle say the 18-year-old stole a small light tank early on Friday and rumbled out of his base toward nearby Bergen — but drove off the road after 500m. Undaunted, he walked back to his base and commandeered a second armored vehicle just like the first. This time, he was spotted by a British military police patrol. As the patrol tried to stop him, he lost control and drove into a tree. Military police then arrested him. Local police say a breathalyzer test showed an alcohol concentration of 0.1 percent. The blood alcohol limit in Germany is 0.05 percent.

■UNITED KINGDOM

Odd books vie for award

Baboon Metaphysics is up against The Large Sieve and its Applications on an eye-catching shortlist vying for the Oddest Book Title of the Year award, unveiled on Friday. Contenders for the annual Diagram Prize for last year, organized by British weekly The Bookseller, also include Curbside Consultation of the Colon and Strip and Knit with Style. The 2009-2014 World Outlook for 60-milligram Containers of Fromage Frais and Techniques for Corrosion Monitoring complete those vying for the prize, to be announced on March 27 on the basis of a public vote. Philip Stone, sales analyst at The Bookseller, said: “We received a huge number of entries this year and the debate was furious as to which would be included on the shortlist. “Six seems such a cruelly low number given titles such as Excrement in the Late Middle Ages and All Dogs Have ADHD were rejected,” he said.

■GERMANY

Dentist guilty of taking teeth

A court on Friday found a dentist guilty of assault for forcibly extracting the dentures from a patient who did not pay a 700 euro (US$880) bill. Chirin Kolb, a reporter for the Suedwest Presse newspaper, said the dentist, 57, apologized to the municipal court in Neu-Ulm after he was fined 6,000 euros for going to the woman’s home and taking the false teeth from her mouth. He was trying to collect 700 euros not covered by her insurance. The woman appeared in court with no teeth.

■ROMANIA

Prime minister homeless

The prime minister is living in a rented apartment two months after starting work because the state can’t find permanent housing for him. The country has no official residence for the prime minister or president. And the government says former public officials aren’t moving out of the few high-quality state-owned homes and apartments in downtown Bucharest, the capital. They are required to leave two months after their terms end. State Secretary Daniela Andreescu said on Friday that she hopes to avoid taking legal action to remove a former dignitary from the state-owned home where Prime Minister Emil Boc wants to live.

■UNITED KINGDOM

Police taste own medicine

Police are usually enthusiastic about closed-circuit television (CCTV) surveillance, but rank and file officers appear far less happy when spy cameras are set up to catch their own misdemeanors. A CCTV camera is being installed in a police station kitchen in Brighton on the south coast to catch officers who do not clear up. It has been strewn with rubbish, spilled food and dirty crockery since a refurbishment. “What a waste of public money,” one officer told the Argus newspaper in a text-message tip-off. “Tough on crime, tougher on causers of grime.”

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