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  1. Updates on Friday 12 June
  2. More news, sport, travel and weather on Monday

Live Reporting

By Matt Pengelly and Chris Ellis

All times stated are UK

Get involved


That's all from the BBC Local Live team for now.

We will be back on Monday with a full round up of the day's news, sport, travel and weather. Enjoy your weekend.

Frog steals competition limelight

Claire Hawke

BBC Local Live

A picture of a tree frog in a pitcher plant has won the Eden Project's first

Twitter photo competition.

Tree frog
Lauren Wilmshurst

Lauren Wilmshurst from South Chailey in East Sussex helped her friend Natalie take the photo near the entrance of the Rainforest Biome.

She said: "I don't think I'll ever get over the childish excitement of knowing there are plants that eat animals rather than the more usual alternative. Out of curiosity, I tilted one of the pitchers to see if it had any dinner — then jumped backwards because I glimpsed what I thought was a slug."

Torquay sale complete

Alan Richardson

BBC Radio Devon Sport

The sale of Torquay United has been completed.

It was announced on Tuesday that the club had been taken over by a

ten man local consortium led by former United striker Dean Edwards.

Small landslip closes part of coast path

Claire Hawke

BBC Local Live

Engineers from Cormac says they're investigating a rockfall on the South West Coast Path near Mevagissey.

rockfall mevagissey

The footpath from Mevagissey Harbour to Pentillie Way has been closed as a precaution and walkers are being urged to avoid the area.

Budget cuts 'linked' to eye op delays

BBC Radio Devon

Patients are being referred for private treatment at a clinic in Exeter after they exceeded the 18-week waiting time for eye treatment at Torbay Hospital.


The South Devon Healthcare Trust says the rise in demand follows a temporary increase in the number of cataract patients waiting for their operations.

Clara Eaglen, from the Royal National Institute of Blind People, said: "(It) just makes no economical sense to cut the operations, cataracts don't resolve on their own and the patient will need treatment in the future."

Heavy rain overnight, drier tomorrow

David Braine

Weather forecaster, BBC Spotlight

Further heavy rain is likely through the evening with the continued risk of thunder. However, this rain will edge to the north through the night with drier conditions developing. Minimum Temperature: 13 Deg C (55 Deg F).

Weather graphic

Saturday should be a drier day with some bright or sunny spells, especially in the South. However, there will be cooler weather and some rain affecting the north coast at times. Maximum Temperature: 19 Deg C (66 Deg F).

A35 closure continues

BBC Travel

A head on crash between a car and a lorry has closed the A35 between Chideock and Axminster.

Traffic is backed up to the A358 for Axminster after the accident earlier this afternoon. Diversions are in place but drivers are experiencing severe delays. Police say the toad will remain closed for some time.

Crown Currency compensation

Scott Bingham

BBC Spotlight

Devon and Cornwall Police say they will try to get compensation for the 12,500 customers affected by the Crown Currency scam.

In the largest fraud investigation ever undertaken by the force,

three men were given custodial sentences today at Southwark Crown Court.

Susan Benstead

Susan Benstead, whose husband Peter, 72, killed himself during the trial, was given a two-year suspended jail term for money laundering.

Latest headlines

Amy Gladwell

BBC News Online

The top stories on

BBC Local Live: Devon & Cornwall:

  • Cornwall businessman Peter Benstead who killed himself while on trial for a £20 million fraud took "an easy way out of his predicament" by ending his life, a judge has said.
  • The A35 will remain closed eastbound beyond rush hour between Axminster and Charmouth after a serious crash
  • Police are trying to find a man in his early 20s who crashed a car into a wall which narrowly missed a woman and baby in Plymouth
  • A rock fall has caused the Cornish coast path to be closed between Pentillie Way & Mevagissey harbour

Drugs gang sent down

Police say the prison sentences of a

drugs gang who brought heroin and cocaine into Exeter from London sends an important message to crime groups in inner cities.

Yahya Hashi and Fathi Ahmed
Devon and Cornwall Police
Yahya Hashi and Fathi Ahmed were the leaders of the gang who brought drugs to the streets of Exeter

Ring leaders Yahya Hashi and Fathi Ahmed were among fourteen men who got sentenced to a total of more than 70 years in prison at Exeter Crown Court.

All 14 defendants pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to supply class A controlled drugs or the concern in the supply of class A drugs.

Police search for crash driver

Chris Ellis

BBC News Online

Police are trying to find a man who crashed a car into a wall which narrowly missed a woman and baby in Plymouth.

Plymouth car crash

The vehicle ended up on its side at a bus stop in Mount Gould Road.

Officers are in the area searching for the man who is described as being slim, 5'7" tall, in his early 20s and wearing a black t-shirt, adidas tracksuit bottoms and white trainers. He may have sustained minor injuries, police said.

Heavy traffic heading west

BBC Travel

  • There are long tailbacks westbound on the A30 around Bodmin this evening because of an accident between Bolventor and Temple
  • Axminster Police confirm that the A35 remains closed in both directions between Raymond's Hill and Charmouth due to a serious accident involving a car and a lorry
  • On the M5 westbound at Exeter there is very slow moving traffic between junctions 29 and 30
  • The Atlantic Highway, the A39 though St Kew Highway there are reports of an accident near Allen Park, close to the service station
  • In Barnstaple also on the A39 Belle Meadow Road we have received reports of an accident at Victoria Road, near the petrol station

With love from Fiji

Ross Ellis

Presenter, BBC Radio Cornwall

A Fijian rugby family has organised a spectacular charity day to raise funds for a Cornish hospital unit.

Josh Matavesi

Former Fijian international Sereli Matavesi played for Camborne in the 1980s but was recently left paralysed by an accident - he's been receiving treatment at

Marie Therese House in Hayle.

Sereli's three sons Josh, Sam and Joel are all professional rugby players, they've invited a star-studding cast of international players for a series of matches at

Camborne rugby club on Saturday, followed by a charity auction.

Suicide was 'easy way out'

Scott Bingham

BBC Spotlight

The judge sentencing those behind a

multi-million pound foreign exchange scam says one of the defendants who killed himself during the trial "should have pleaded guilty as the evidence against him was overwhelming".

Peter Benstead

Cornwall-based Crown Currency boss Peter Benstead

killed himself while on trial with members of his family for a £20m fraud. His "suicide was not an admission of guilt" it was "simply an easy way out", the judge said.

His wife Susan was given a two year suspended sentence for money laundering. The day-to-day manager Roderick Schmidt has been jailed for five years today and accountant Stephen Matthews four years.

Music festival for learning disabled adults

BBC Spotlight

Organisers are describing this weekend's

Funky Llama Festival on Plymouth Hoe as a 'ground-breaking' event.


This is the first year the musical extravaganza for adults with learning disabilities has taken place in a public space - acts from all over the region will feature at the festival, alongside workshops and stalls.

Slow moving stampede

Eleanor Parkinson

BBC Spotlight

A Cornish farmer is hoping to take on the French at their own game by growing snails for a restaurant in St Mawes.


Marianne Evans from Porthscatho says the damp Cornish countryside is perfect for breeding and fattening the escargots - one of the recipes is called 'Garden scampi'. I'll be trying some for

BBC Spotlight tonight.

Young Chiefs called up

BBC Sport

Four Exeter Chiefs players have been picked in the England Under-18s squad for an upcoming tour to South Africa.

Forwards Josh Caulfield, Billy Keast and Jack Stanley, together with scrum-half Jack Maunder, have all been named in the 26-man development squad.

Academy Manager Robin Cowling said: "Players such as Luke Cowan-Dickie, Jack Nowell, Henry Slade, Sam Hill, Joel Conlon and Stu Townsend have all played at this age level before then going onto play for the Under-20s and in some cases even higher levels, including full Test standard."

Coast path closed after rock fall

Claire Hawke

BBC Local Live

Cormac is urging people to avoid part of the coast path in Mevagissey after a a rock fall.


The area between Pentillie Way and Mevagissey Harbour is affected and the path has been closed.

Cornish Squadron in migrant mercy missions

Falmouth Packet

A pregnant woman giving birth was just one of the 1,100 people saved in a single day by 'The Flying Tigers' 814 Naval Air Squadron operating from HMS Bulwark in the Mediterranean last week, reports the

Falmouth Packet.

Royal Navy

The rescues on Sunday, June 7 resulted in the largest Royal Navy migrant rescue to date on Operation Weald. As HMS Bulwark's 'eyes in the sky' the Culdrose-based squadron's mission is to support the international humanitarian operation by scanning the Mediterranean looking out for vessels in distress on the high seas.

1966 and all that

BBC Radio Devon's David FitzGerald

tweets: ‏Great to have caught up with Sir Geoff Hurst again.


You can hear the interview on

BBC Radio Devon tonight from 17:00.

Missing Sussex woman

Matt Pengelly

Local Live

Police are trying to

trace a missing woman from Sussex Chanelle Ford, who's not spoken to her family since 3 June.

Sussex Police

Chanelle is 23 and from Crowborough - it is believed that she has travelled to Devon and Cornwall, and is with a friend. She may be driving a white and pink Citroen DS3 car, registration number GL14 YAA.

Drugs gang jailed for 70 years

Chris Ellis

BBC News Online

After a 16-month operation a drugs gang from London and their Exeter-based drugs runners have been

sentenced to over 70 years in prison at Exeter Crown Court.

All 15 defendants pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to supply class A controlled drugs or the concern in the supply of class A drugs.

Det Insp Mark Waldron said: "This group has been responsible for a large proportion of class A drug supply in Exeter and further afield for some time."

Crown Currency sentencing

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

The day-to-day manager of a foreign exchange Roderick Schmidt has been

jailed for five years for his part in the Crown Currency fraud.

Roderick Schmidt

Schmidt, 46, of Penzance, was convicted of two counts of fraudulent trading, but cleared of two counts of false accounting.

Susan Benstead

He was sentenced at London's Southwark Crown Court following a three-month trial during which a main defendant committed suicide. Susan Benstead,

whose husband killed himself during the trial, was handed a two-year suspended jail term for money laundering.

Shepherd to Albion?

BBC Sport

Cornwall scrum-half Matt Shepherd is

considering a move to Plymouth Albion.

Brian Tempest

The 25-year-old, who spent last season at Launceston, starred in the Cornwall side that won the County Championship final at Twickenham under the guidance of Albion boss Graham Dawe.

"It's a possibility, but no decision has been made yet," Shepherd told BBC Radio Cornwall. "The option is hopefully there and I wouldn't mind giving it a crack to go a bit higher, but I've just got to make sure it's the right thing to do and the right time," he added.

Weather radar

The Met Office

tweets: Torrential downpours with the potential for 20 to 30 mm within an hour for some areas today.
Check the radar here.

Accountant jailed for scam

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

An accountant involved in a multi-million pound foreign exchange scam has been jailed for four years.

Stephen Matthews

Crown Currency Exchange's Stephen Matthews, 52, of St Newlyn, Cornwall, was convicted of two counts of false accounting.

He was sentenced at London's Southwark Crown Court following a three-month trial during which a main defendant committed suicide. The Hayle firm went bust in October 2010, owing 12,500 clients £20m.

Latest on the roads

BBC Travel

  • The A35 near Axminster is closed in both directions and traffic is very slow due to a serious accident between the B3165 Crewkerne Road and Axminster Road. The road is likely to be closed for sometime.
  • In Plymouth, there are reports of heavy traffic at Manadon Roundabout and on of the approaching roads.
  • In Helston, Meneage Street is partially blocked due to an accident at Bullock Lane.

Lucky escape for woman and baby

Gordon Sparks

BBC Radio Devon

A woman and baby have had a miraculous escape after a car hit a wall at speed and ended up on its side at a bus stop in Plymouth.

Plymouth car crash

Mount Gould Road in Plymouth has since been closed.

Warning for rogue traders

BBC Radio Cornwall

Car dealers are being warned by Cornwall Trading Standards Officers to ensure the vehicles they sell are roadworthy.

It follows the successful prosecution of two local businessmen earlier this week, who were found to have sold a dangerous car.

The men were fined £5,000 each after it was proved the Mitsubishi Pajero had defective brake hoses and chassis corrosion that was so severe that it would have caused serious danger to any occupants and other road users.

Police cleared over abuse 'cover-up'

Patrick Clahane

BBC News Online

Devon and Cornwall Police has been

cleared of a "cover-up" of child abuse committed by one of its officers because of a lack of evidence.

Danny Bryant

Danny Bryant was

jailed last November for abusing boys between 1974 and 1985.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has investigated complaints about the way police enquiries were carried out. It found there was not enough evidence to take further action in the case.

Safety advice to kite surfers

BBC Radio Cornwall

The RNLI is reminding kite surfers to take care off the coast of Devon and Cornwall after rescuing a man off Watergate Bay this week.

The man was kite surfing in challenging conditions and a strong north westerly wind - RNLI lifeguard Emilie Williams said: "When we reached the casualty we saw he was tangled amongst his kite and his board had been dragged out to sea. As quickly as possible, we untangled him and pulled him onto the rescue watercraft."

Kite surfers are reminded to always kite surf with another person, check the weather conditions and tides beforehand and talk to a RNLI lifeguard for further guidance before entering the sea.

Argyle backroom changes

The day after Derek Adams took over as the new manager of Plymouth Argyle, BBC Radio Devon's Gordon Sparks

tweets: My sources inform me John Harbin, Sean McCarthy & Rhys Wilmot have left #pafc Paul Wotton, with 12 months left on current contract, remains.

Work that body!

Laurence Reed

Presenter, BBC Radio Cornwall

I've been chatting to celebrity fitness guru Mr Motivator - he's 62 you know - as

a nationwide search is launched to find the UK's fittest over-65.


I'm not quite that old but Mr Motivator has been telling me how to keep my arms toned, my tum rippling with muscle and my bum....well, my bum is my business.

Albion bring in Exeter youngsters

Brent Pilnick

BBC South West Sport

Plymouth Albion have

signed three Exeter Chiefs academy players on season-long loans.

Harrison Cully
Getty Images

Scrum-half Jack Maunder, forward Ed Holmes and winger Harrison Cully (pictured) have all agreed to move to Albion.

They will all play in National One for Albion following their relegation from the Championship in April. "All three players will be with us for the season which will provide us with more continuity," said Albion director of rugby Graham Dawe.

ISIS Lundy takeover claims 'lack substance'

North Devon Journal


North Devon Journal reports an article claiming brutal terror group ISIS has Lundy Island on their hit-list has no "real substance" says the manager of the idyllic island.

Dr Afzal Ashraf, a former counterinsurgency strategist for the US army in Iraq, told the Express, the island of Lundy could feature as a target for the brutal terror organisation.

The Express say he claims the rocky outcrop was once home to a group of Barbary pirates who operated out of Muslim North Africa during the Middle Ages. He told the Express: "The island of Lundy in the Bristol Channel was once occupied by Barbary pirates, so if they find that out they might decide they want to recover the island."

Kite surfer saved

BBC Radio Cornwall

Lifeguards at Watergate Bay have rescued a kite surfer after he lost his board and became tangled in his kite.


The inexperienced kite surfer was unable to relaunch his kite in a strong north westerly wind. RNLI lifeguards used rescue craft to reach him, untangle the lines and bring him safely to shore. You can

watch a video of the rescue here.

Social media may hold clue to fire

Torquay Herald Express

Police are investigating social media sites in their hunt to find arsonists responsible for a blaze at the former Launa Windows site in Newton Abbot, reports the

Torquay Herald Express.

Detectives believe online media sites, including Snapchat and Facebook, could hold the key about the cause of the fire which destroyed the roof of the derelict building in Bradley Lane on Wednesday.

There have been no arrests but officers are also making house-to-house enquiries and studying CCTV.

Bad weather on its way

Kevin Thomas

BBC Weather Forecaster

Heavy showers are gathering in the English Channel, some may be very heavy and thundery later.

Met Office

It follows a

Met Office warning of severe weather for today and tomorrow morning.

What will stop people littering?

Bill Buckley

Presenter, BBC Radio Devon

Some Plymouth schoolchildren will be in the City centre this afternoon to sing a song about litter.

Students from Mount Street Primary are sick of stepping over rubbish - including syringes and glass - on their way to school.

So they're hoping people will listen to them. Would you? Will a song make any difference? If not, what do you think will make people stop dropping rubbish? Let me know your views on today's phone-in on 0345 3011034.

Roads latest

BBC Travel

  • Slow traffic is reported on the A30 eastbound in Bodmin between Callywith and Preeze Cross. Congestion to Innis Downs Junction.
  • Coleridge Road in Plymouth is closed in both directions between the Lipson Road junction and the Prince Maurice Road junction because of emergency repairs.
  • There's slow traffic on the A38 Tamar Bridge westbound in Plymouth between the Toll Booths, St Budeaux, Plymouth and Saltash, Cornwall.