Posts tagged ‘times’

July 11, 2011

Brown ‘targeted by Sunday Times’

 Gordon Brown The Sunday Times said Gordon Brown had purchased a flat owned by Robert Maxwell at a “knock-down price” A BBC investigation has discovered that the Sunday Times is alleged to have targeted the personal information of the former Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Documents and a phone recording suggest “blagging” was used to obtain private financial and property details.

The Brown family are also worried that medical records relating to their son Fraser may have been obtained.

Its owner, News International, which also owned the News of the World, is yet to respond.

There are several allegations. The first two relate to personal details it is claimed were obtained for a front-page Sunday Times report that Gordon Brown had purchased a flat owned by Robert Maxwell at a ‘knock-down price’.

Blagging, or “knowingly or recklessly obtaining or disclosing personal data or information without the consent of the data controller” has been illegal since 1998.

A blagger alleged to be acting for the Sunday Times posed as Brown and obtained details of his Abbey National account in January 2000.

This blagging was discovered by the building society’s fraud department which alleged someone successfully called their Bradford call centre six times pretending to be Brown and were given information.

In letters obtained by the BBC, the Abbey National wrote to Sunday Times editor John Witherow concluding it had suspicions that “someone from the Sunday Times or acting on its behalf has masqueraded as Mr Brown for the purpose of obtaining information from Abbey National by deception.”

The Abbey National said to Mr Brown’s lawyer it was a “well-orchestrated scheme of deception”.

Abbey National has not been able to identify the blagger, and did accept in a letter to Mr Brown it did not have conclusive evidence.

However, the Guardian journalist Nick Davis has alleged a former actor John Ford carried out specialised blagging from banks during this period for the Sunday Times. This allegation is detailed in his book Flat Earth News.

July 1, 2011

Testing times for cheaters Rawalpindi fake examination

Testing times for cheaters
Rawalpindi: Police swooped on a fake examination centre in the city on Monday and hauled up four supervisory staff members and 68 students they were helping to cheat in their exams for a fee.

Waris Khan police said the Government Shimla Elementary School in Arya Mohallah was raided on the information by the Controller Examination of the Punjab Board of Technical Education (PBTE) that organised cheating was going on there.

A mobile squad, accompanied by Sohail Ahmed Ghauri of the board, sent there caught the 68 students, a headmaster, a deputy superintendent and two examiners red handed.

The students appearing in the final exams for a three-year Diploma in Associate Engineering told police that they had paid Rs1,000 to Rs2,000 for getting the chance to again attempt the “electrical engineering paper”.

The students, some of them sobbing, along with Mohammad Ilyas and Mohammad Ibrar, two examiners, Amadur Rehman Lodhi, headmaster of the Shimla school, and Raja Abid, deputy superintendent examination, were shifted to the police station. Later, a case was registered against them.

As the news of police raid on the school and arrest of students broke out, relatives, parents and friends gathered outside the police station.

The students had already taken the exam in electrical engineering in the morning shift ?” 9 am to 12 noon ?” at Hashmat Ali Islamia College. After the examination was over, Superintendent Khawaja Naveed Ahmed asked Deputy Superintendent Abid to go to the bank branch to dispatch the “solved answer sheets” to the controller examination PBTE in Lahore.

According to police, Abid allegedly called the students and offered them to re-solve their answer sheets. Taking it as a “golden opportunity”, a group of students accompanied him to Shimla school where they were given back their solved answer sheets. As they were busy improving their first attempt in the morning, a mobile squad of the board and police caught them red-handed.

Tariq Mehmood Malik, controller examination PBTE said that after information about ‘malpractices’ in some examination centres in Rawalpindi, “we formed a special squad to check them.”

The controller said the raiding team was surprised to find that the students were attempting a paper which was not scheduled at Shimla school. He said the school’s headmaster and the deputy superintendent were present at the time of raid. “Involvement of headmaster cannot be ruled out.” The controller said departmental probe has been ordered, adding that those found guilty could face the dismissal from service.

Police seized answer sheets and Rs29,000 the students claimed they had paid for “cheating”. Police said Superintendent Naveed Ahmed has escaped, adding that apart from the two examiners, headmaster of the school, and the deputy superintendent, a retired headmaster, Riaz Akbar, was also arrested.

A relative of one of the arrested students said that Amad Tariq was not taking the exam as he had gone to “support his friend” who was inside the examination hall when he was apprehended along with others. Dawn