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Man jailed for 600 drug plants

A Vietnamese fisherman has been jailed for 18 months for cultivating over 600 cannabis plants in a sophisticated grow house.

Ninh Pham (60), of no fixed abode, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to cultivation and possession of cannabis for sale or supply at Orwell Park Heights, Templeogue on December 10, 2010.

Deal near on tax at An Post

THE Government is close to striking a deal with An Post and the unions to allow people to pay the household charge at their local post offices.

The deal is being hammered out following lobbying by backbench Fine Gael TDs in rural constituencies. Anyone wanting to pay the tax by direct debit had to register by the end of February, leaving the only current option as payment at a county council office.

French airline's ¤809m loss

Air France-KLM posted an ¤809m net loss for 2011 in what the company acknowledged was a "tough year" for the carrier squeezed by volatile fuel prices, political upheaval and a struggling global economy.

The Franco-Dutch airline said it posted a 4.5pc increase in revenue to ¤24.7bn, but that increase was not enough to offset the high cost of jet fuel.

Santorum urges two-man race

Rick Santorum is telling supporters in Mississippi they could make the Republican presidential contest a two-man race if they deliver him a victory next week.

Mr Santorum and Newt Gingrich want to emerge as front-runner Mitt Romney's chief rival.