London’s Air Ambulance is more likely to be sent to a stabbing or shooting than a traffic collision, it was revealed today.
According to the Evening Standard, its medics treated 560 victims of violent crime last year — the first time in its almost 30-year history that this category exceeded the number of pedestrians, cyclists, drivers or passengers hurt in crashes, which totalled 533.
The figures are the latest dramatic indication of the knife crime epidemic sweeping the capital. There were 80 fatal stabbings last year.
Dr Gareth Grier, lead clinician at London’s Air Ambulance, said: “It is not unusual now for our teams to perform open-chest surgery for stab wounds twice in a single day. This would have been unheard of a few years back.
“But our world-leading treatments mean that we can give these and other patients we treat the best possible chance of survival.” The service’s annual report revealed that it treated 1,797 critically injured patients, and many more at major incidents such as the Westminster and London Bridge terror attacks.
Victims of stabbings and shootings accounted for 31 per cent of its work. There were an extra 60 such cases compared with the 500 in 2016. Road collisions fell from 606 to 533.
Almost a quarter of cases, 412, involved falls from height. It treated 292 patients involved in incidents on the rail network, or hangings and drownings. Its teams go to an average of five emergencies a day. The 24/7 service, based at the Royal London hospital in Whitechapel, is run by a charity and requires £10 million a year in funds. It has two helicopters and uses fast-response cars at night.
Its trauma doctors are employed by Barts Health and its paramedics seconded from LAS.
Jonathan Jenkins, chief executive of the London’s Air Ambulance charity, said: “We did our best for 1,797 people last year, yet with our annual costs now at £10 million, we have never been more reliant on the generosity of London to ensure our service can keep running.”
London’s most ambitious town hall boss wants to transform Barking’s depressed and downtrodden town centre into a gleaming “mini-Manhattan”.
Darren Rodwell, leader of Barking and Dagenham council, who first compared Barking’s run-down river frontage to a “Barcelona on Thames, revealed his unlikely “futuristic” 10-year plan today amid the yachts and palm trees of the annual MIPIM property conference on the French Riviera.
Images show skyscrapers rising above the town known as the birthplace of England football captains Sir Bobby Moore and John Terry and songwriter Billy Bragg, the “Bard of Barking”.
Mr Rodwell wants to revive a centre dominated by pound shops and social housing — after a “30-year downward trajectory” — through £2 billion of investment that will eventually bring 6,000 new homes, smarter shops and an art film cinema.
But he insisted that Barking would remain true to its working-class roots and that the regeneration would be aimed at improving life for locals.
Mr Rodwell said: “The skyline suggests a mini-Manhattan. But the new-look town centre will not be a playground for the rich — it must deliver truly affordable homes and a range of great leisure and retail facilities for ordinary Londoners.”
He added: “Local people don’t want gentrification, they want ordinary Londoners to be able to live here. If we don’t do that, London dies as a place. We need a mixed community.”
Much of the new housing will be for rent or shared ownership.
Mr Rodwell said: “The fact is we led London and the country on new-build 100 years ago with the Becontree estate, which everyone else followed. That’s what we are going to do again now.”
The plans have been drawn up on behalf of the council’s own regeneration company Be First by architects Weston Williamson + Partners.
The first phase will involve 2,200 new homes built above and around a revamped Barking station, and two hectares of green space dubbed “Central Bark”. The station will retain its Grade II listed canopy.
*The old Baking city centre (l) and an artist impression of what it could look like (r)
Speaking at MIPIM in Cannes, Pat Hayes, managing director of Be First, said: “Our vision is deliberately ambitious, designed to ignite interest among investors, and excitement among local people.
It is a starting point but the end point we’re seeking is a brilliant new town centre that will serve the people of Barking and east London.”
|13.9 square miles||22.83 square miles|
|Barking Abbey, Eastbury Manor House, Valence House Museum||Empire State Building, Times Square, Guggenheim Museum|
|Billy Bragg, Stacey Solomon , John Terry||Robert De Niro, Alicia Keys, Al Pacino|
|Barking FC, Dagenham & Redbridge FC||NY Knicks, Yankees and Mets|
|Mecca Bingo||Madison Square Garden|
|Claim to fame|
|Former home of Dagenham Ford||The city that never sleeps|
Here is the story of Emmanuel Nwude who committed the largest fraud in Nigeria by selling a non-existent airport to a Brazilian for $242 million between 1995 and 1998.
Emmanuel Nwude carried out one of the the biggest banking frauds in the world
The wide spread internet fraud commonly known as 419 is a phenomenon Nigeria has sadly come to be associated it. Before internet fraud became a global issue, Nwude had committed one of the biggest scams in the world.
Specifically, his fraud was the third largest banking scam in the world after the Nick Leeson’s trading losses at Barings Bank, and the looting of the Iraqi Central Bank by Qusay Hussein.
How was Emmanuel Nwude able to carry out this jaw-dropping scam and convince Nelson Sakaguchi who was the director of the bank to part with so much money for the purchase of an airport?
Nwude was a former director of Union Bank of Nigeria and this position made him privy to certain sensitive links, information and documents that other employees would not be aware of.
He impersonated the then governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Paul Ogwuma, and connected with Sakaguchi informing him of a mouth-watering deal of Nigeria’s plan to build an airport in Abuja.
Nwude, while posing as the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Governor, was able to convince Sakaguchi that he stood of chance of pocketing $10 million commission when the deal passed through. Sakaguchi paid $191 million in cash and the remainder in the form of outstanding interest.
Nwude’s accomplices were Emmanuel Ofolue, Nzeribe Okoli, and Obum Osakwe, along with the husband and wife duo, Christian Ikechukwu Anajemba and Amaka Anajemba.
Christian was later assassinated.
The criminal gang also successfully convinced the director of the Brazilian bank to release the funds.
It started with a fax in March 1995.
It was from a man called Tafida Williams, who signed off as the Director for Budget and Planning at Nigeria’s Ministry of Aviation. Nigeria, Tafida said, had shifted its administrative capital to Abuja and needed new transport systems. A friend and long-term client of Noroeste had suggested the Brazilian bank would be interested in investing in a new international airport. What Sakaguchi didn’t know was that he was a mark, and although the client was a real person, Tafida was not. Not even that, that there was no such project underway. He didn’t know it then, and wouldn’t for another three years.
Shortly after that fax, Sakaguchi travelled to London. His new friends whisked him from the airport to a hotel in a limousine. At the airport, he met three Nigerian men and one woman. One man gave him a business card introducing himself as the governor of the Nigeria Central Bank, Paul Ogwuma. By the end of the meeting, Sakaguchi was convinced. In fact, he gave them $35, 000 in cash; they would remit $39 million, they promised.
Nelson Sakaguchi was not an extraordinary banker, but he was a hyper-efficient one. For fourteen years, he had meticulously guarded the overseas funds of his employer, the Brazilian bank Banco Noroeste. A loyal and ambitious man, his illustrious career would collapse right before his eyes as his fellow director demanded details about their Cayman Islands operations.
No one had noticed anything off about Sakaguchi’s accounts until a Spanish bank, Santander, tried to buy Noroeste from the Simonsen and Cochrane families in 1998. There was a large amount of money seemingly just sitting in the Cayman’s arm; yet it was two fifths of the entire bank’s value and half of its capital base. That single question begun a bizarre journey into the criminal underworld of Nigerian fraudsters, and just how simple it is to rob a bank.
In 2002, the then president, Olusegun Obasanjo saw to the establishment of an anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). Nwude’s fraud case was one of the first to be investigated and in 2004, all members of the gang were arraigned before an Abuja High Court on 86 counts of “fraudulently seeking advance fees” and 15 counts of bribery related to the case . Although they pleaded not guilty, they were warned not to attempt to bribe court officials as it was suspected that money was going round.
In 2005, Amaka confessed to helping Anajemba and was asked to repay $25.5 million and also sentenced to two and a half years in prison.
Nwude attempted to bribe Nuhu Ribadu, the then chairman of the EFCC, with $75,000 cash but the latter refused and Nwude was charged with attempted bribery as well as attempt to kidnap a prosecuting witness.
Following Sakaguchi’s witness, Nwude finally pleaded guilty and was sentenced to five concurrent sentences of five years and was also asked to pay $10 million fine to the federal government.
He was released from prison in 2006 and filed a case to reclaim his assets insisting some of them were acquired before the criminal act. He has so far been able to reclaim $167 million.
A land dispute in the town of Ukpo in the Dunukofia area with Abagana community turned bloody when over 200 men invaded the community killing four policemen and the security guard at the construction site in 2016. The Anambra state government fingered Nwude as the ringleader and he was subsequently arrested and arraigned on 27 charges including murder and terrorism. He is being held at Awka prison as the court case is still on.
While Nwude’s criminal exploit was not the first in the country, it signified the rise in international financial crime and popularise the advanced fee fraud syndrome with Nigeria’s name associated with it.
This is the first picture of a former college student shot dead as he sat in a parked car in the street.
Joseph Williams Torres, 20, was sitting in a car in Walthamstow, east London, when he was approached by a gunman who fired several shots through the window.
The former Waltham Forest college student, who had studied carpentry, was treated at the scene in a car park on the Essex Close estate but died en route to hospital.
A close friend told the Standard: “We’re all heartbroken. We would walk to school together every day. He had a cheeky smile and was the class joker.
“He was close to his little sister, she is distraught. Joseph was innocent and completely harmless.”
The shooting at 9.30pm on Wednesday is the third in a week in London. A 14-year-old boy was left with “life-changing” injuries after being shot outside Seven Sisters Tube station on Tuesday.
On Thursday last week 19-year-old Kelvin Odunuyi was shot dead outside a cinema in Wood Green.
On the same night as Mr Torres’ death, a teenager was stabbed to death yards from his home in Chadwell Heath after being chased by a gang through an estate.
Lyndon Davis was cradled by a friend after the attack in Nash Road at about 10.30pm on Wednesday.
The 18 year old, an aspiring rapper who was known as Lynx, was taken to hospital where he died less than two hours later.
Today his father Ricardo Green told the Standard: “I’m devastated. He was a great boy.”
Lyndon is the eighth teenager to be fatally attacked in London this year. Seven have been stabbings.
A friend said: “He was a nice guy we can’t believe it. He loved his rap, he was a talented musician. His sister and family are devastated.”
Another added: “I am going to see his family, They are grieving. We are all struggling to understand how this happened.”
A police cordon was put in place as homicide police searched for discarded weapons. A forensic tent was erected, yards from Lyndon’s front door.
The teenager and his family are thought to have moved to Chadwell Heath recently after previously living in Barking.
Witness Kelly Lowing said: “I heard terrible screaming – it was so loud. There was the boy outside in the ground who was screaming, they were desperate cries.
“The ambulance came and was working on him. It was terrifying and horrible.”
Lecturer James Sodimu said: “There were loads of young boys running around the estate. They were obviously chasing someone.
“They were covering something with plastic bags, it looked like they were concealing weapons. It was very frightening.”
Another witness said: “He was chased down through the estate – he nearly made it home. We are all totally shocked.”
In another incident, another teenager was fighting for life today after being stabbed in an argument outside Woodford Station.
Witnesses said he was approached by a group of teenagers who asked where he was from.
Passers-by rushed to give the victim first aid after he was found collapsed outside the station just before 5.30pm yesterday.
There have been no arrests in either of the deaths.
Culled from Evening Standard
An Emirates flight attendant died after tumbling from a plane’s emergency exit on the tarmac in Uganda.
The hostess, who was not named, died in hospital a day after the incident at Entebbe International Airport in Uganda on Wednesday afternoon.
Flight EK729 arrived in Entebbe about 2pm local time and was scheduled to head back to Dubai at 3.25pm, with passengers preparing to board.
The woman suffered serious head injuries that caused her death, with a gruesome photo showing her lying face down on the tarmac in a pool of blood.
Unnamed witnesses told local media she spoke with colleagues then held what looked like a glass bottle under her chin before jumping from the 60ft Boeing 777.
‘Her knees were shattered and her body cut with broken glass from the bottle she jumped with,’ one told the Daily Monitor.
Emirates said it was cooperating with the investigation, which is yet to officially determine the cause, and only referred to its employee falling from the door.
‘A member of our cabin crew unfortunately fell off from an open door while preparing the aircraft for boarding on flight EK729. The injured crew member was brought to the nearest hospital,’ it said.
Uganda’s Civil Aviation Authority said it would investigate the incident, which in a very early statement on Wednesday also referred to as a fall.
‘A female member of the cabin crew appeared to have opened the emergency door and unfortunately fell off an Emirates aircraft that had safely landed and parked,’ it said.
The report also says: “There is an opportunity to deliver façade, signage, lighting and treatment improvements to businesses in Plumstead. An initial appraisal estimates that at least 40 businesses can benefit from these improvements.”