Police spy, Harry kiss, lawyer demo and an Atlantic shark in the papers
- 8 March 2014
The damning report on the Metropolitan Police's handling of Stephen Lawrence murder investigation provokes further reaction in the papers.
The Daily Mail follows up the revelations by reporting that details about the marriage breakdown of Stephen's parents was passed to Scotland Yard bosses by a police spy.
Its front page story says it was an "astonishing intrusion" into the family's privacy while Stephen's father Neville tells the paper officers "must have taken leave of their senses".
The Times says the "fall out" from the report "claimed its first victim" with the removal of one of those criticised, senior counter-terrorist officer Richard Walton, to other duties. The Daily Telegraph said the dismissal was evidence of Scotland Yard bowing to pressure after it initially insisted Commander Walton would remain in his post as it probed a claim against him.
According to the Guardian, the crisis "intensified" with the leader of the black officers' association, Janet Hill, telling the paper the force was still "institutionally racist" - a conclusion of the 1999 Macpherson report on the case.
And after Met Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said the latest report was "devastating", the Sun's Trevor Kavanagh wonders whether he actually "is the right man to put things right".
The Daily Mirror urges Scotland Yard to "throw the book at those guilty of abuse and corruption".
Photographs of barristers and solicitors demonstrating in Westminster against legal aid cuts - accompanied by actress Maxine Peake from TV legal drama Silk and a giant papier-mache effigy of the justice secretary - feature in many papers.
Writing in the Financial Times, Jane Croft says the area opposite the House of Commons resembled an "impromptu robing room", describing a "rare public display of emotion from the lawyers", some of whom marched with their young children.
The Guardian's Owen Bowcott notes that the "sight of hordes of lawyers brandishing placards on a protest march still retains the power to shock: the decorum of the courtroom turned upside down". The protest was the first full-day walk-out in the dispute but he points out that demonstrating lawyers are becoming "increasingly common... a consequence of cuts inflicted by governments since the late 1990s".
In an editorial, the paper says "without equal access to justice on both sides, a right that is being steadily destroyed, the scales become imbalanced and there can be no justice at all".
Elsewhere, a demonstration of another kind is picked up by the papers at the opening ceremony of the Winter Paralympics in Sochi, Russia.
Biathlete Mykhaylo Tkachenko cut a "lone figure" but was met with "roars from the crowd", says the Sun.
The Guardian says the International Paralympic Committee had been "desperately trying to separate the event" from the politics of the Crimea crisis.
'Deep freeze' Putin
Staying with Ukraine, the Guardian carries an interview with Nick Clegg in which the deputy prime minister acknowledged there was a "pronounced Russian imprint" in the Crimean peninsula which meant it could not be viewed the same way as other parts of Ukraine.
He said Russian President Vladimir Putin appeared to have "been in a sort of deep freeze since the Cold War and hasn't moved with the times" but urged him to engage in a "civilised discussion" with the new government in Kiev.
A variety of other political stories generate front page headlines.
Government proposals to make non-payment of the television licence a matter for the civil courts, is the lead story in the Daily Telegraph. More than 100 MPs from all parties support the change which would would bring it in line with failure to pay parking tickets and utility bills and stop the criminalisation of people "too poor" to pay.
The Guardian reports that Ofsted is drawing up plans for the biggest shake-up to the way it inspects schools in England. The paper says the regulator is seeking to demonstrate its independence as it braces itself for the publication of two hostile think tank reports, including one by the Policy Exchange, founded by the Education Secretary, Michael Gove.
According to the Times, UKIP is facing an official inquiry into claims it improperly used taxpayers' money to fund political operations in the UK. It reports claims of a whistleblower that some staff were paid directly from European Union funds, even though they worked exclusively in the UK. The party says it acted entirely legitimately and "within the rules".
The Independent says the government's tax and benefit changes have hit women almost four times as hard as men. The analysis suggests women have been affected by cuts to tax credits and the freeze in child benefit although a Treasury spokesman is quoted as saying the study is "flawed" as it "misunderstands the way in which families and couples share their income".
Sunshine and strawberries
Prince Harry and his girlfriend Cressida Bonas are pictured hugging and kissing at the We Day youth charity event at London's Wembley Arena and many papers point out that it was the first time they had been seen together at one of his official engagements.
The Sun, which features the story on its front page, describes it as their "first show of love in public" while the Daily Mirror said it was a "sign they are more serious than ever".
The Daily Express, which carries the headline "We're an item", reports: "Prince Harry has tried to keep his love under wraps for nearly two years but public statements don't come much bigger than kissing in front of 12,000 people."
Finally, after the wettest winter since national records began, it is perhaps not surprising that forecasts of warmer weather starting this weekend excite the papers for a third day in a row.
The Times says "sunshine reigns this weekend" and the South Coast "battered mercilessly by wind and rain for months, can expect its first bumper tourist weekend of the year".
The Daily Telegraph reports forecasters say parts of the country will be hotter than resorts in Spain, Greece and Italy and supermarkets are racing to stock their shelves with the first English strawberries of the season - grown in glasshouses.
Growers credited the early ripening - the fruit is in the shops a week earlier than last year - to mild winter temperatures, the paper says.
Making people click
Daily Telegraph: Putin mocks the West and threatens to turn off gas supplies
The Independent: North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un is Maverick as he poses with all-female pilot crew of the Anti-Air Force Unit
The Times: Confessions of a brain surgeon
Financial Times: Cyber Snake plagues Ukraine networks
Daily Mail: Wills and Kate jet off again (minus baby): Couple head off for 'second honeymoon' in the Maldives