Essex child abuse detectives guilty of misconduct

Lee Pollard and Sharon PattersonImage copyright

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Lee Pollard and Sharon Patterson were found guilty of misconduct in public office

Two police officers who scuppered child abuse investigations through laziness have been found guilty of misconduct in a public office.

Essex Police Det Con Lee Pollard, 47, was convicted of two counts while his partner Det Con Sharon Patterson, 49, was found guilty of one count.

Patterson was found not guilty of one count and the Old Bailey jury was unable to reach verdicts in a further charge against each.

The pair will be sentenced on 3 May.

The allegations against the officers, who now live together in Colchester, came to light when performance reviews were carried out into the child abuse investigation team in which they worked.

‘Beyond incompetence’

Prosecutor Alexandra Healy QC had told the jury the motivation of the pair – who at the time were having an affair – appeared to be “a combination of laziness, self-preservation and a cynical disdain for complainants in child abuse investigations”.

Their conduct was “beyond incompetence” and not down to a “lack of resources” or “insufficient investigative manpower”, she said.

Patterson was accused of ditching work to get a manicure and have a four-hour lunch at a Chinese restaurant with her married lover Pollard.

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Sharon Patterson and Lee Pollard’s trial was held at The Old Bailey

When she forged a document to shut down one investigation, Pollard described herself as his “deceptive partner in crime” in flirtatious emails, jurors heard.

The pair denied wrongdoing, citing administrative chaos at the child abuse unit in north Essex where they both worked.

The convictions bring to a close a four-year corruption probe into the Essex Police unit by the neighbouring Norfolk force and the police watchdog.

Thirty officers, some now retired, were investigated and 296 Essex child abuse cases looked at, of which 55 were referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

The defendants were the only ones to face criminal charges, but a third officer was sacked for gross misconduct last year.

Five officers resigned or retired when the investigation began and two officers who were found to have a case to answer for gross misconduct had left the force before action was taken against them.

Essex Assistant Chief Constable Andy Prophet apologised to victims on behalf of the force.

He said: “Today’s trial has highlighted that between 2011 and 2014 we let a number of victims and their families down.

“Those victims had suffered child abuse, one of the most heinous crimes imaginable.”

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QuadrigaCX Prompts Regulators to Move: Will Canada Clampdown on Crypto?

The QuadrigaCX debacle that has gripped the crypto space so far this year has evidently not gone unnoticed by Canadian financial regulators. In a consultation paper, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) appealed for the input of various crypto market participants to help with a proposed regulatory framework to address investor protection in the space.

The paper seeks input on areas including custody, asset verification, price determination, and market surveillance. All comments regarding the paper must be submitted by May 15.

CSA and IIROC Seek Input on Crypto Regulatory Framework

Canadian regulators have been spurred into action following the recent QuadrigaCX case in which the CEO of a Canada-based crypto exchange supposedly died with the only access to the company’s funds in cold storage. After various twists and turns in the narrative, including allegations of “fake death mafias” and the missing crypto never being there to begin with, those QuadrigaCX customers that have lost out due to the fiasco are still no closer to having their money returned.

Presumably in response to this (or at least accelerated by it), IIROC and the CSA published a joint consultation paper earlier today seeking members of the cryptocurrency community to comment on a range of issues that would potentially impact upon how the space is eventually regulated.

The paper goes by the catchy title of: “Joint Canadian Securities Administrators/Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada Consultation Paper 21-402 Proposed Framework for Crypto-Asset Trading Platforms”. It proposes that crypto exchanges be required to be registered as marketplaces, investment dealers, or both. This will depend on the nature of assets traded at the platform, as well as other considerations.

In a summary of the paper, CSA Chair and President and CEO of the Autorité des marchés financier, Louis Morisset, is reported to have said:

“Platforms have told us that a tailored regulatory framework is welcome as they seek to build consumer confidence and expand their businesses across Canada and globally.”

The CEO and President of IIROC, Andrew J. Kriegler added:

“The emergence of digital and crypto assets continues to be a growing area of interest for regulators, investors and marketplaces – and, together, securities regulators are taking steps to deepen our understanding of this area.”

He went on to state that it was important to adapt to technological innovations such as cryptocurrency and that regulations should be tailored to “unique business models”. Yet he asserted that maintaining investor protection was also paramount to the role of regulators.

The paper goes on to state that both the CSA and IIROC are keen to work with international regulators and welcome discourse on a variety of different approaches.

From the wording on the crypto consultation paper, despite the fact that hundreds of millions of dollars are currently in limbo thanks to the mismanagement of QuadrigaCX’s custody solution, it still seems that Canada’s lawmakers are keen to nurture the ever-growing digital asset industry, rather than clampdown hard on it. The kind of tailor-made regulatory approach that it calls for is certainly encouraging for the future of the space.


Related Reading: After QuadrigaCX Fiasco, Another Shady Bitcoin Exchange Surfaces in Canada

Featured Image from Shutterstock.

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Turn-Based RPG Battle Chasers: Nightwar Is Heading To Mobile

After it’s release in 2017 for PC, Xbox, and PS4, Battle Chasers: Nightwar eventually found its way to Switch. Now, almost two years later the game from former Darksiders team members is coming to mobile devices.

We generally liked the game when we reviewed it, and even thought it was unfortunately overlooked that year. With a turn-based battling system reminiscent of some classic Final Fantasy titles, it seems like a great fit for your phone. There is no word on a specific release date for the port, but the trailer promises it is coming soon. In the meantime, check out the teaser trailer below.

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Drugstore Powder Foundations – Best Powder Foundations Under $20

What looks like a traditional compact, but gives an airbrushed look without the need for a final layer of setting powder? A powder foundation, of course. 

Powder foundations are often overshadowed by their liquid or cream counterparts, but this consistency shouldn’t be ignored. The compacts are small enough to throw in your bag without weighing it down (and easier to clean up if it spills). Powder is also pretty stellar at absorbing excess oil, so shine isn’t that much of an issue. 

There are countless formulas on the market (for all skin types, too!), but when you don’t have the time or budget for the luxury options, rest assured that these drugstore staples, all priced under $20, impart just as flawless of an effect. Shop the full list below.

VIDEO: 6 Beauty Products Under $12 You Should Buy from the Drugstore


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Crispy Quinoa Cakes with Pesto Recipe

Clearly, I’m on some sort of “cake” bandwagon at the moment. And not the birthday cake kind, although that’s always yummy too!  I recently shared a Zucchini & Sweet Potato Pancake recipe (and as I look back, I even see that I photographed them on the very same dish—oops), and now today I’ve got a Quinoa Cake recipe for you. However, these aren’t just any Quinoa Cakes…these are crispy quinoa cakes, flavored with super fresh, homemade spinach/basil pesto. Pesto out of the jar is just one of those things that is NOT the same!

My family usually has all sorts of input when I’m trying new recipes, and I’ll make things over a few times to get it right. However, this was one of those (rare) occasions that right out of the gate everyone just said YUM and chowed down. Plus, not only did these patties end up being a hearty addition to a vegetarian dinner night (we do go for meatless meals a couple of nights a week, more on that here), but they were great leftover in the lunch box the next day. I honestly wished I had made more. So, if you’ve got a hungry brood, like me, be sure to double up on this recipe—you’ll thank yourself later!

How to make crispy pesto quinoa cakes


Crispy Pesto Quinoa Cakes


Crispy Pesto Quinoa Cakes on 100 Days of Real Food


For the pesto

  • 1/2
    fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2
    fresh spinach leavescan sub kale
  • 1/3
    freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4
    pine nuts
  • 1
    garlic clovecrushed
  • 2
    olive oil

For the cakes + cooking

  • 1
    quinoacooked according to package directions, about 3 cups cooked
  • 2
  • 1/4
    whole-wheat flour
  • 1/2
  • olive oilfor cooking
  • salt & pepperto taste
  • fresh basiloptional, for garnish


For the pesto

  1. In a mini food processor, blend together all the ingredients until smooth.

For the cakes + cooking

  1. In a large bowl, mix together the quinoa, eggs, flour, salt, and pesto until well combined.

  2. In a large skillet over medium-low heat, add a thin layer of olive oil. With wet hands, form the quinoa mixture into about 10 cakes and add them to the pan. 

  3. Cook until golden brown on both sides, about 10 to 12 minutes total. Cover with a lid (if desired) after crisping the sides to help them cook all the way through, adding more oil to the pan if it dries out. Season with salt and pepper.

  4. Serve warm topped with extra Parmesan and basil (optional). Also great leftover. 

Crispy Pesto Quinoa Cakes on 100 Days of Real Food

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Man And His Dog Jump Into Frozen Lake To Rescue Two Stranded Dogs

Man And His Dog Jump Into Frozen Lake To Rescue Two Stranded Dogs

Proper greatergood_ctg_belowtitle

Melissa Kho was hiking with her husband, Timofey Yuriev, and their dog, Kira, in Irvington Woods: Peter Oley Trail System when they noticed two dogs stranded in a frozen lake. Her husband and loyal golden retriever leaped into action.

Timofey undressed and jumped into the freezing water and started to make his way towards the dogs. There was a layer of ice over the water that he and his dog broke through to reach the dogs. They reached the first dog and helped him swim back to shore.

Screen Shot: Facebook/Melissa Kho

Even though the water was unbearably cold, the pair set out for the second dog. Timofey grew up in Kazakhstan where his grandfather taught him to swim in ice as a young boy. That training came in handy for this heroic rescue.

Screen Shot: Facebook/Melissa Kho

They finally reached the second dog and all swam back to shore. Melissa posted the video on Facebook with the caption, “Just witnessed something amazing: My hubby (and pup) rescuing two dogs trapped in the ice 🙏🏽 Wim Hof Method.”

Screen Shots: Facebook/Melissa Kho

The two rescued dogs were out with their owner when they escaped and fell through the layer of ice on the frozen lake. Timofey told The Journal News/lohud Today, “It was pretty dangerous. They got stuck. They tried to come out and after a while, they just stopped moving. I saw they were in trouble. There was no other way.”

The woman who owned the two dogs was in tears after the rescue. “First she tried to stop me. She was so thankful.”

Watch the amazing rescue in the video below.

Proper greatergood_ctg_abovevideo

Miraculous Rescue As Man Runs Ahead of Firefighters To Save Dog From Burning Home: Click “Next” below!

Andrea Powell is an animal enthusiast who lives in West Michigan. Her horse and 3 dogs are her children. She loves to write and share her knowledge of equine and canine nutrition. In her spare time she likes to volunteer with animal rescues, camp with her husband and dogs, and trail ride with her horse.

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Zion to rejoin Duke for tournament Thursday

CHARLOTTE — Zion Williamson will return to action for the first time in nearly a month on Thursday as Duke takes on Syracuse in the ACC tournament.

Williamson injured his left knee against North Carolina on Feb. 20, and the Blue Devils have struggled in his absence, dropping three of six games.

Amid debate that the ACC Player of the Year and likely first overall selection in June’s NBA draft should sit out the rest of the season, coach Mike Krzyzewski had offered assurances Williamson would return and had pointed to Thursday’s game as the most likely date to get back on the court.

Williamson practiced in full throughout the week, and Krzyzewski said he expected the team would have a quick adjustment period working its star forward back into the lineup, putting the Blue Devils squarely back in the national championship picture.

“We have a re-set button,” Krzyzewski said after a loss to UNC to cap the regular season. “If Zion’s healthy, we have a chance.”

Thursday afternoon, Duke tweeted out a photo of Williamson lacing up a pair of Kyrie Irving sneakers by Nike.

Williamson was wearing a Nike Paul George signature shoe, the PG 2.5, on Feb. 20 when he injured his knee. Just 33 seconds into Duke’s showdown with North Carolina, Williamson planted to make a move, but then his shoe gave way and tore apart at the sole. He left the game and missed the next five games.

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Netflix to remove real disaster footage from Bird Box film

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Streaming service Netflix has apologised for the incident

Streaming service Netflix has said it will remove footage of a real-life rail disaster from the film Bird Box.

The company confirmed in January that the popular thriller contained a brief clip from Canada’s deadly Lac-Mégantic tragedy.

The excerpt was used early in the film to depict a fictional news story about an apocalyptic scenario.

Netflix had initially said it would not substitute the footage in question.

In a brief emailed statement to the BBC on Thursday, the company confirmed that, along with the filmmakers of Bird Box, it has decided to replace the clip.

“We’re sorry for any pain caused to the Lac-Mégantic community,” the statement said, without giving a reason for changing its decision.

Over 45 people were killed in 2013 when a train carrying crude oil derailed in the Quebec town of Lac-Mégantic. Dozens of homes and businesses were destroyed.

The process to replace the clip worldwide with an outtake from a TV series will take several weeks, the company said.

In January, Quebec’s culture minister wrote to the CEO of Netflix urging the company to have the clips removed.

On Twitter on Thursday she wrote that the streaming service’s change of heart “demonstrates that by staying united and working together, anything is possible”.

Bird Box was not the only Netflix production containing images of the deadly runaway train disaster.

Similar footage was found to have been used in the Canadian-American science-fiction drama Travelers.

In the show’s third season, images of Lac-Mégantic’s blazing downtown core could be briefly seen illustrating fictional news coverage of a nuclear attack in London. Those clips were later removed.

At the time, the stock footage vendor that provided the production company behind the show Travelers said it deeply regretted the footage being “taken out of context and used in entertainment programming”.

It said would contact customers who had purchased any related clips to make them aware “of the sensitive nature of this footage”.

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Chic Japanese Fashion Photography : chic Japanese fashion

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Ekaterina Belinskaya Captures an Elegant Essence in Japan

Ekaterina Belinskaya’s ‘Big in Japan’ photography series displays a number of chic Japanese fashion examples in an expressive setting, one that boldly contrasts with the lavishness of the outfits. The Los Angeles-based creative takes cues from Eastern cultures to bring to life an artistic vision that is part futurist, part avant-garde. The series seems to be largely explorative of the relationship between subject and space, as Ekaterina Belinskaya places the chic Japanese fashion ensembles in unlikely narratives — while one photoshoot takes place in the back of a restaurant’s kitchen, another embraces a McDonald’s fast food delivery cart as a prop. Moreover, the aesthetic quality that communicates futurist avant-gardism proves to be a focal point in Ekaterina Belinskaya’s stylistic approaches.

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BAT tipping on Android Brave released for testing (Brave on Android has 10M+ downloads) : CryptoCurrency

The latest version of Brave for Android (1.0.88) is now available for download at the Google Play Store.

This release features a new toolbar on the bottom, where you can more easily access tabs, bookmarks, and settings. It’s more “thumb friendly” and easier to reach. Thank you to everyone who requested this new functionality!

There is also another reason for this bottom toolbar. As some of you may know, we have been working on bringing Brave Rewards to Android. With Brave Rewards, you can choose to reward the content creators you love at the amount that works for you, while keeping your browsing history private. We are happy to say that this is now available in beta. If you’d like to be one of the first to try out Brave Rewards on Android, you can enable it in chrome://flags. Please visit this page and view the video on how to get up and running.

We’d love your feedback and we’re all ears. Let us know your thoughts and suggestions so that we can make Brave Rewards on Android even better. We’ll be actively looking for your feedback in our community.

If you have questions or comments, please visit our Support Community.

Thank you for using Brave and supporting us in our mission to fix the web.

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