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Taximan jailed for sex assault

A former Dublin taxi driver has been given a four-year sentence for sexually assaulting a female passenger on her way home from a Christmas party.

The 51-year-old Cavan resident, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was convicted at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court last March.

He had pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting the 45-year-old woman outside his cab after driving her to her Dublin home in the early hours of December 11, 2005.

The judge imposed a sentence of four years, but suspended the final two years. He also banned the man from driving for 10 years.

Parkinson drug 'addict' alert

Drugs used to treat Parkinson's disease can turn people into compulsive gamblers or sex addicts, research suggests.

Scientists identified "impulse control disorders" in 13.6pc of more than 3,000 patients being treated for Parkinson's in the US and Canada.

Gambling was a problem for 5pc of patients, while 5.7pc engaged in compulsive buying and 4.3pc in binge-eating. Sex addiction was reported in 3.5pc. The disorders were more common in individuals taking drugs that increased the effects of the brain chemical dopamine.

Early warning for ash clouds

Researchers have devised a volcanic ash plume forecaster in an attempt to bring some science to disruption facing the aviation and tourism industries.

Academics at NUI Galway developed the model offering six-day estimates for the location, size and make-up of dust clouds.

Prof Colin O'Dowd said the model uses the best available information on emissions and cloud heights, weather patterns, dust density and size.

Blaze tragedy fans honoured

The 25th anniversary of the Bradford City fire disaster, which left 56 football fans dead, will be marked today in the city.

The tragedy happened at the Valley Parade ground in 1985 when smoke and flames raced through a wooden stand, leaving 56 dead and around 265 people injured.