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Summary

  1. Closing headlines on Wednesday, 17 February 2016
  2. Bedfordshire Police have confirmed anti-terrorism police were sent to speak to a teenager who wore a "Free Palestine" badge to school in Luton
  3. A Luton man accused of terror offences talked about carrying out an attack on soldiers outside military bases, according to the prosecution at his trial
  4. Pay rises at Hertfordshire County Council will see some senior managers earn more than the Prime Minister
  5. More news, sport, travel and weather updates from 08:00 on Thursday

Live Reporting

By Dani Bailey

All times stated are UK

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  1. Our live coverage across the day

    That's it for today's live feed, thanks for joining us. 

    We'll be back from 08:00 tomorrow morning.

  2. Brian, the St Albans train station cat, reunited with owner

    Dani Bailey

    BBC Local Live

    A cat who lived at St Albans train station and was fed by staff has been reunited with his owner after three years.

    Brian at St Albans train station
    Quote Message: Brian would follow us around the station and never went on the track or boarded a train." from Tasha Hodges St Albans train station team leader
    Tasha HodgesSt Albans train station team leader

    The cat, known as Brian, was taken to the vet recently for flea treatment, where a microchip was discovered.

    Brian - whose real name is Obama - had been missing since his owner, from London, visited St Albans in 2013.

  3. Protest expected at MK budget meeting

    Jane Killick

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    A protest is expected before a council meeting in Milton Keynes this evening where money-saving proposals will be decided on.

    Among the plans are charging for wardens in sheltered housing, cutting funding for play areas and getting rid of pink sacks for recycling. The council is looking to cut £21m from its spending. 

  4. Man jailed for sexually assaulting 14-year-old

    A man in his 20s has been jailed for six months for sexually assaulting a 14-year-old in a shop in Bushey.

    Salim Ahamad, 22, of High Road, was found guilty at St Albans Magistrates' Court yesterday.

    Police say they were contacted after the girl told her grandmother she had been followed around the shops and touched inappropriately. CCTV was used to identify Ahamad, who has indicated to immigration services a wish to return to his country of origin.

  5. Leigh Brightman: Disgraced police officer dismissed from force

    Carol Abercrombie

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    A police officer ailed for arranging to have sex with the runaway teenage girl whose disappearance he was investigation has been dismissed by Hertfordshire Police.

    Leigh Brightman

    Leigh Brightman was jailed on 27 November after pleading guilty to three counts of misconduct in public office.

    He was dismissed following a misconduct hearing. Hertfordshire Police said he "betrayed the honour and values of the constabulary in the worst way possible".

  6. Challney Boys school deny claims they referred pupil to Prevent

    Luton News

    A Luton school has refuted claims a student was referred to an anti-terror scheme because he wore a ‘Free Palestine’ badge in class.

  7. Human sex trafficker sought by police

    A convicted human sex trafficker who went on the run while on bail is being sought by police.

    Florin Radu

    Florin Radu's 23-year-old victim came to the UK from Romania in August 2013 believing she would become a waitress but was forced into prostitution, police said.

    The 30-year-old was convicted in his absence at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court in October 2015. Radu was arrested at Luton Airport on 6 March, 2014 before being charged and remanded, but was later bailed and went missing.

  8. Woman suffers head injury after A6 crash

    A woman has been taken to hospital with a head injury following a crash on the A6 at Pulloxhill today.

    A6 at Pulloxhill

    An ambulance crew were called to the scene just before 05:00, where a vehicle had ended up in a ditch.

    The woman was taken to Bedford Hospital for treatment, but her injuries are not believed to be serious.

  9. Terror accused described creating road accident at military base

    Dani Bailey

    BBC Local Live

    A Luton man on trial accused of planning a terror attack on military personnel in Britain described creating a road accident weeks after driving past bases in East Anglia, prosecutors claim.

    Kingston Crown Court heard delivery driver Junead Khan, 25, would legitimately travel near military bases working for a pharmaceutical firm in Letchworth.

    Kingston Crown Court

    In messages to a Briton in Syria from July last year, Mr Khan wrote: "When I saw these us (sic) soldiers on road it looked simple but I had nothing on me or wouldve (sic) got into an accident with them and made them get out the car." 

    He denies making preparations for attacks between 10 May and 14 July 2015.

  10. Listen: What's in the mysterious Houghton Regis hamper?

    Jonathan Vernon-Smith

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    Here John from Houghton Regis explains to me what is in a mysterious hamper left on his doorstep.

    He's trying to reunite it with the rightful owner...

    View more on Soundcloud
  11. Children's posters to stop dog fouling

    Schoolchildren from Codicote Primary School in Hertfordshire have designed posters asking the public to pick up their dog mess.

    The signs have been put up in an alleyway near the school.

    View more on twitter
  12. Two face trial over Shefford boys' home abuse

    Nic Rigby

    BBC News

    Two men charged in connection with the abuse of 26 children at a Catholic orphanage in Shefford, Bedfordshire, more than 40 years ago, are to stand trial at the Old Bailey on 13 June.

    John Cahill (left) and John McCann

    James McCann, 79, of Suffield Court, Swaffham, Norfolk, denies 18 sexual assaults and 48 assaults in connection with St Francis Boys Home between 1963 and 1974.

    John Cahill, 73, of Chandos Court, Bedford, denies six sexual offences against four boys.

  13. Travel: Collision M1 northbound near Newport Pagnell services

    BBC Travel

    The M1 northbound is partially blocked due to an accident between J14 and J15, near Newport Pagnell services. Traffic is queuing.

  14. Weather: Snow, sleet or rain?

    BBC Weather

    Whether it comes in autumn, winter or spring, snow is always difficult to pinpoint as BBC Weather's Louise Lear explains.

    Video content

    Video caption: Snow, sleet or rain?
  15. Afternoon headlines: Luton terror accused... MK budget protest

    Jane Killick

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    The top stories this afternoon:

    • A Luton man accused of terror offences talked about carrying out an attack on soldiers outside military bases, according to the prosecution at his trial
    • A protest is expected before a council meeting in Milton Keynes this evening where money-saving proposals will be decided on
    • Bedfordshire Police have launched a knife amnesty today
  16. Policeman 'offered girl, 15, cash for sex'

    Dani Bailey

    BBC Local Live

    A former Bedfordshire police officer offered to pay a 15-year-old girl cash for sex, a court has heard.

    St Albans Crown Court

    Mohammed Arshad, 35, of Ferndale Road, Luton, is standing trial at St Albans Crown Court accused of trawling Facebook for young girls to drive around in his car and persuade to engage in sexual activities with him.

    A police interview, with a 15-year-old girl, was played to the jury who said the accused offered her £50 to have sex with him. Mr Arshad denies 22 charges, including one of rape and 11 of causing a child to engage in sexual activity. The case continues.

  17. Fire engine donated to Kenya

    Officials from Kenya visited Bedfordshire last week to accept the keys for a fire engine being donated to them by the county's fire service.

    Fire engine donated to Kenya

    Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service are sending the vehicle to the Meru area in Kenya after it was recently retired from use in the fleet.

    "We have a simple philosophy that lifesaving equipment which may no longer be of use here may continue to save lives for many years to come in Kenya," chief fire office Paul Fuller said.

  18. Travel: Train delays in Bucks

    BBC Travel

    There are delays and cancellations on Chiltern Railways between Aylesbury and Princes Risborough due to emergency engineering works.

  19. The Big Picture: Inside St Albans Cathedral

    The main image at the top of today's live page shows the inside of St Albans Cathedral.

    Thanks to Daisy Phillips from Central Bedfordshire College for sharing the photograph with us.

    Inside St Albans Cathedral