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Summary

  1. Updates on Friday 27 May
  2. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 Tuesday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Our coverage across the day

    That's it for today. Join us from 08:00 on Tuesday for our usual mix of news, sport, travel and weather.

  2. 'Courier fraud' gang sentenced

    Three men and a woman have been sentenced for their parts in a phone scam plot to trick elderly residents across the Midlands and other areas into handing over savings, police say.

    Among the Birmingham victims were an 89-year-old Short Heath woman who lost £3,000, an 83-year-old Kingstanding woman who lost almost £2,500, and a 92-year-old Weoley Castle woman who had £498 taken.

    The convicted four

    Officers say Jahangir Khan from Perry Barr and Arafa Begum from Alum Rock ran a "courier fraud" scheme. Along with Londoners Mohammed Miah and Motahir Rahman, they tricked victims into handing over bank cards and PIN numbers having posed as police officers claiming their bank accounts had been hacked.

    Police said at Birmingham Crown Court today, Khan was sentenced to three years and two months in prison, Miah was sentenced to three years and three months in prison, Begum was sentenced to eight months suspended for 21 months and ordered to do 150 hours of community service, and Rahman was sentenced to 10 months suspended for 21 months and also ordered to do 150 hours of community service.  

  3. Birmingham children's services: Row over leader's future

    A row has broken out over the future of the councillor in charge of Birmingham's children's services.

    Brigid Jones has been responsible for attempts to reform the department - which is to be taken over by an external trust- since May 2012.

    Brigid Jones

    A senior opposition councillor has accused her of failing in her duties and called for her to go.

    But ex-health minister Lord Norman Warner said the Labour councillor was not solely to blame.

  4. Turning around children's services is 'biggest challenge in British politics'

    That's the view of the leader of Birmingham City Council on the scale of the task to improve the city's beleaguered children's services.

    John Clancy

    Labour's John Clancy told the BBC the department had not been good enough to help vulnerable children and turning control over to a trust was the best option.

    "I believe that the processes that we are going through at the moment will be the start of making larger steps than we have done so far."

  5. Latest headlines: Life sentence for woman who poisoned care home's water bottles; PC jailed for hoax kidnap plot

    - A care worker is handed a life sentence for the attempted murder of three colleagues

    - Birmingham City Council leader says turning around children's services is 'the biggest job in British politics'

    - A PC is jailed for bogus kidnap plot

  6. Woman who poisoned care home's drinks bottles given life sentence

    Phil Mackie

    Midlands correspondent, BBC News

    More now on the care worker Melissa Swift who has been given a life prison sentence after admitting she attempted to murder three colleagues.

    She poisoned drinks bottles and water jugs at a care home in West Bromwich in 2014. Seven members of staff and 23 residents at Goldfield Court were taken ill.

    Melissa Swift

    The former special constable, aged 25, also admitted threatening to kill another colleague as well as her step sister.  

    Birmingham crown heard that Swift, who suffers from depression, represents a significant risk of causing serious harm to the public. She will be treated in a secure mental institution until she is well enough to be taken to prison, where she will serve at least eight years before she is eligible for parole.

  7. Scooter blaze that spread to Tamworth home was arson

    Tamworth Herald

    Occupants of a Tamworth home had a lucky escape after a mobility scooter was deliberately set alight outside their property.

    A fire engine
  8. BreakingCare worker handed life sentence for attempted 'bleach' murders

    Ben Godfrey

    BBC Midlands Today

    A care worker who tried to murder three colleagues by adding bleach to drinks at a West Midlands care home has been given a life sentence. 

    Melissa Swift, who's 25, will be treated in a secure mental institution until she is well enough to be taken to prison.

  9. PC's hoax kidnap threat: Officers 'feared they were terror targets'

    Here's more on the story about PC Amar Hussain, jailed today for seven years.

    Police officers felt "very vulnerable" and feared they would be the victim of a terrorist kidnap plot - only to later find the threat stemmed from his hoax 999 call.

    Amar Hussain

    Speaking anonymously to the BBC, one serving officer said colleagues - who were told not to wear uniforms to and from work - believed an attack was "highly likely".  

    But when they discovered the threat was made by a colleague they were angry. "We are all disgusted and embarrassed that someone like that was a police officer and worked amongst us."  

  10. Three held over disorder

    West Midlands Police say they have arrested three people in Solihull after an outbreak of disorder in the town centre.

    View more on twitter
  11. Latest headlines: PC jailed for hoax terror kidnap plot; pool shut over sickness bug; city council 'supporting' social workers

    - A PC officer is jailed for seven years for making a hoax call to his own force saying an officer would be kidnapped by terrorists

    - A swimming pool is shut after a bug caused several children to fall ill

    - Birmingham City Council "supports" its social workers after "difficult" undercover documetary

  12. BBCSpringwatch - a sneaky peek

    As BBC Two begins its Springwatch coverage next week, BBC Midlands Today's Dr David Gregory-Kumar has already been out filming a rather cute polecat.

    View more on twitter

    He'd love to see any photos or footage of the animals you have. You can tweet them to @DrDavidGK

    To see how populations are faring in our region, watch his film on Thursday at 18:30.

  13. Hoax kidnap PC is the 'last person who should be' a police officer

    More now on the West Midlands Police officer jailed for making a hoax kidnap threat in a phone call to his own force.

    Amar Tasaddiq Hussain, 29, (pictured left), has been told by the judge who today sentenced him to seven years in prison that he is "the last person who ought to be serving" with the force.  

    BBC

    He made the call in the hope it would discredit someone he held a grudge against, an official within Dawat-E-Islami, a peaceful Muslim prayer group.  

    Two accomplices - Adil Bashir and Muhammad Sheikh (pictured centre and right) - have been jailed for three years after the court was told they played lesser roles.

  14. Motorcyclist rushed to hospital following crash

    Royal Sutton Coldfield Observer

     A 24-year-old has been taken to hospital after coming off his bike and hitting a car in Erdington.

    The bike
  15. Birmingham children's services: Trust 'may not be the answer'

    BBC WM

    The former commissioner put in charge of Birmingham's children's services says there's no evidence that trusts taking over failing departments make children safer. 

    Lord Warner's comments follow a Channel 4 documentary last night that highlighted serious issues in the department after a social worker went undercover. 

    Council offices

    Earlier this week, it was revealed the council wants to remove the department from its control and have a voluntary trust run it instead.  

    But Lord Warner told the BBC he has concerns about the plans.

  16. Birmingham hosts 20th Gay Pride

    Thousands of people are expected in Birmingham this weekend as the city hosts its 20th Gay Pride.

    It began in 1997 and over the years has backed many campaigns for LGBT equality, as well as being a platform for some extraordinary outfits.

    Video content

    Video caption: Birmingham's 20th Gay Pride: Parades and protests
  17. Latest headlines: Policeman jailed for bogus kidnap threat; swimming pool shut over sickness bug; council reacts to 'difficult' documentary

    - Policeman jailed for bogus kidnap threat

     - A Kings Heath swimming pool is closed temporarily after a bug caused several children to become ill   

    - Council reacts to 'difficult' documentary on its children's services