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Driver gets jail and 40-year ban

A PLASTERER who drove off at high speed from a garda checkpoint has said he was "disappointed" with himself for coming to garda attention so soon after he served a four-year sentence.

Stephen Murray (29) mounted a footpath, went through a green area in an estate and narrowly missed a garda patrol van.

A judge at Tallaght District Court banned Murray, of Kilcarrig Close, in Tallaght, from driving for 40 years and sentenced him to five months in prison.

Merkel probes concert deaths

German chancellor Angela Merkel promised an "intense" investigation into the deaths of 19 people at a techno music festival as witnesses put the blame on police and security staff.

Up to 1.4 million people turned up at the Love Parade, where a panic on Saturday crushed 19 people to death and injured 342.

Police blamed organisers and officials.

Witnesses, however, blamed police and private security staff, saying the panic broke out after they closed a tunnel -- the only entrance to the festival -- as the venue became too full.

Deadly blast rocks Thai poll

A bomb at a bus stop in central Bangkok killed one person and wounded 10 others shortly after polls closed in a by-election that pitted a government candidate against a jailed leader of recent mass protests in the Thai capital.

Police would not speculate whether the bombing was related to Thailand's continued political turbulence in the wake of demonstrations that paralysed much of the capital.

The government candidate scored a narrow victory over a contender being held in jail on terrorism charges.

Boy survives 16-storey fall

A 15-year-old New Zealand boy has survived with minor injuries after falling 16 floors from the balcony of his family's apartment onto a concrete floor.

The teenager, from Auckland, fell about 50 metres off the balcony, dropping through a car park roof before he hit the concrete. He suffered broken bones and internal injuries.