Newspaper review: Police smear claims considered


The Independent claims to have new evidence of "systematic" attempts by police to smear anti-racism campaigners.

The paper highlights the story of Janet Alder who led a campaign after her brother, Christopher - a black former paratrooper - choked to death at Hull's Queen's Gardens police station after being arrested in 1998.

The inquest jury found he was unlawfully killed.

The Independent says it has seen a letter to Ms Alder that reveals evidence that both she - and an unnamed lawyer working with her - were spied on by officers, at the time of her brother's inquest.

The Guardian says the case also raises questions about the ethics of police monitoring of lawyers.

Humberside Police said it had referred itself to the Independent Police Complaints Commission and would not be able to comment until it had concluded its investigation.

Lending concerns

The FT Weekend reports that Lloyds is ready to sell the 39% stake held by the government, as the banking sector starts to bounce back.

The paper says Lloyds could begin such a move as early as the end of next week - after second quarter results are announced.

The paper also says that Barclays is "closing in" on a plan to boost its capital strength with a number of ideas to shrink its balance sheet under discussion.

The Archbishop of Canterbury's criticism of payday lender Wonga also gets attention from the FT.

The paper notes the Most Reverend Justin Welby's admission on BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the emergence of a link between Church investments and Wonga was "very embarrassing".

For one commentator, it appears the archbishop could do no wrong on Friday.

Marina Hyde, of the Guardian, says she is not sure she can "avoid developing a bit of a crush on the Archbishop of Canterbury".

"But for my godless money, the archbish made the most disarmingly engaging of Today programme interviewees" when asked "about the contradiction", she writes.

Online porn alerts

But Conservative MP Claire Perry, who is the prime minister's adviser on childhood, is less impressed and wants the Church of England to look into its other investments.

She tells the Daily Telegraph the Church of England should show "moral leadership" and consider selling its shares in Google.

Such a move would, she says, put pressure on the internet search engine to block illegal images of child abuse online.

The Times reports that Google may already be facing increasing pressure from its biggest rivals to do more about child abuse warnings.

The paper says that from Saturday, Microsoft will have pop-up alerts on its search engine, to help stop what the paper calls "vile" searches and Yahoo will follow suit within weeks.

Google says it has a "zero tolerance attitude to child sexual abuse imagery".

'Bullyboy tactics'

"The Battle of Balcombe" is how the Daily Telegraph describes the scenes at the village in West Sussex where a number of people protesting against fracking were arrested on Friday.

The paper says there has been "a mutiny in middle England" as the company, Cuadrilla, is poised to start exploratory drilling for oil and gas in the area.

The Sun accuses seasoned protesters from across England of hijacking what had been a village protest.

Green Party members suggest that the government - which supports fracking - is using "bullyboy tactics" to break up the protest, the Independent reports.

Coded warning

The Guardian has the story of a British-based computer scientist who has been banned from publishing an academic paper because it has the secret codes used to start luxury cars such as Bentleys and Lamborghinis.

The High Court has told Flavio Garcia - a lecturer at Birmingham University - that revealing the codes to the Megamos Crypto security system could unleash thefts of millions of rather expensive vehicles.

The Daily Mail leads with a report that nearly half a million immigrants have been given taxpayer-funded homes over the past 10 years.

The paper says the revelation comes as the number of families waiting for social housing has hit a record high of 1.8m, with most on the list are British-born.

It says the figures from the 2011 census show round 1.2m foreigners now live in social housing - one in eight of the total.

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