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Sex in exchange for taxi fare are 'common'

By Staff/Agencies

Aussie taxi driver acquitted of raping drunk, female passenger

A taxi driver acquitted of raping a drunk, female passenger yesterday, claims taxi drivers are routinely offered oral sex and other sexual favours as payment for fares in Australia.
Prabhjit Singh Gill, was quoted in the West Australian as saying that the offers were commonly made and he knew of dozens of drivers who had accepted the favours.
"It's normal, like you drive you pick up a girl and they have no money," he said.
Gill made the comments during an interview following the rape trial that had seen him and fellow taxi driver Amrit Pal Singh accused of raping a young married woman as she made her way from a hen’s night last year.

Sexual contact between drivers and passengers is in breach of the taxi driver’s code of conduct.

He made obscene move but I can’t say how: girl

A Kuwaiti girl walked into the police station in the oil-rich Gulf emirate and reported a driver who chased her and made an obscene move. When they asked her to show them how, the embarrassed girl said she can not do it.

The unnamed girl said the man would not give up, prompting her to react angrily to his advances.

“When I refused to respond to his advances, he made an obscene move,” she told police, according to Alanba newspaper.

”When police men asked her to clarify the obscene move, she said she can not do it in front of them but offered to show it to the prosecutor.”

The paper said police were searching for the man after the girl provided them with his car number.
Nepal's vulture "restaurants" for endangered birds

In the village of Pithauli, surrounded by ripening mustard fields, a woman hauls a cow carcass on a trolley, drops it in an open field, then runs and hides in a nearby hut as dozens of vultures swoop down.
In under half an hour, the carcass has been reduced to picked bones by the dun-coloured birds, occasionally squabbling as they feed.
The site is one of a handful of vulture "restaurants" opened to save the birds, which help keep the environment clean by disposing of carrion, from extinction -- and at the same time help impoverished villages become self-sufficient.
A drug called diclofenac, used for treating inflammation in cattle, causes kidney failure and death in vultures which feed on their carcasses. As a result, two species of vulture -- the White-rumped and Slender-billed -- are now critically endangered in Nepal, as well as in Pakistan and India.
"If the situation continues the two species will be extinct in ten years," said Hem Sagar Baral, chief of the Nepalese Ornithological Union.
"We may maintain certain minimum numbers but we'll never see the numbers we had 20 years ago."
Two decades ago there were about 50,000 nesting pairs of the two vulture species in Nepal. Now, barely 500 pairs remain.
Their steep decline is blamed on the widespread use of diclofenac, which was banned in 2006, and loss of habitat, with the kapok trees they use for nesting vanishing fast to meet demand from factories producing match sticks and plywood.
Five years ago, Bird Conservation Nepal came up with the idea of "restaurants" as places where the birds could feed on safe carcasses.
Pithauli, some 100 km (60 miles) southwest of the Nepali capital of Kathmandu, was the site of the first such feeding station, which now number six around the country.
The number of nesting pairs there has grown to 46 compared with just 17 before the feeding site was opened five years ago, said Dhan Bahadur Chaudhary, who coordinates the project.

Mum tells Westwood to say sorry for swearing 

Lee Westwood was forced to apologize after his mum caught him swearing on live television at last week's Qatar Masters, the world number three said on Tuesday.
The incident occurred during the 38-year-old Briton's closing 69 Sunday, a round that left him in a tie for 12th place behind tournament winner Paul Lawrie who finished on 15-under-par.
"My mum was the first person on the phone and she said you might want to apologize," Westwood told reporters ahead of this week's Dubai Desert Classic.
"I didn't think that down at four-under-par I would be on TV. It's amazing how sensitive these microphones are."
After the conversation with his mum, Westwood issued an immediate apology on his Twitter account.
German police use Facebook pictures to nab crooks

Police in the German state of Lower-Saxony will soon use their networks of Facebook "friends" to find missing persons and hunt out suspected criminals, according to the state's interior minister.
The decision to use social media in manhunts follows the completion of a pilot scheme in the northern city of Hanover last year which drew sharp criticism from data protection groups.
The scheme helped police clear up six criminal investigations and two missing persons cases after identikits of suspects and stills from Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) footage were circulated on the social networking site Facebook.
Two cases were resolved just hours after the information was uploaded to the site.
"Our successes so far clearly show that the police must not shut themselves off from this medium," state interior minister of Lower-Saxony, Uwe Schuenemann, said in a statement.
"The police department in Lower-Saxony can adapt to new trends," he said. "With a fan page the police is showing itself to be modern and approachable."
Data protection groups heavily criticised the publication of suspects' pictures on Facebook during the pilot last year, arguing that personal data directed through Facebook could end up on an American internet server, outside the influence of EU data protection laws.
The new system, which will be introduced in the near future, will direct Facebook users to a police server via an internet link, said Schuenemann.
But the state commissioner for data protection, Joachim Wahlbrink, said this was not enough and the decision would lead to the circulation of the personal information on the internet which can never be completely deleted.
"Once this data has been saved, those involved will always be pilloried," his spokesman, Michael Knaps, said.
Frozen sauerkraut causes German motorway chaos
Piles of sauerkraut tumbled out of a truck on a busy German motorway and quickly froze to the autobahn surface, causing a massive traffic jam near Frankfurt during Tuesday's morning rush hour, police said.
A truck carrying hundreds of packages of the famous German pickled cabbage delicacy crashed into another vehicle before dawn near the western town of Friedberg near Frankfurt and scattered its contents across the motorway.
With temperatures far below zero for the last week, the sauerkraut froze almost instantly and created impassable obstacles, causing traffic to back up for 10 km. The motorway was completely shut down for four hours while authorities struggled to scrape the frozen sauerkraut away.