In Brief: Phone bill challenge
A TEENAGER who ran up a £1,158 (€1,383) phone bill voting on 'I'm A Celebrity . . . Get Me Out Of Here!' has had to forfeit a chunk of her Christmas money to help pay the cost.
College student Nicole Hassall (18) was unaware she was incurring charges until her telephone operator sent her mother a warning by text message. The mobile phone company Orange said it would halve the bill as a gesture of goodwill.
RAPE CASE DROPPED
A 97-YEAR-OLD man, who was believed to be the UK's oldest competitive cyclist, has had court proceedings against him dropped for an allegation of rape of a girl aged under 16 because of his mental health.
Lionel Veck, of Preston Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire, was charged with rape and two offences of indecent assault dating back to the mid-1970s. But proceedings against Mr Veck were stayed following a psychiatric report, which showed his mental health had recently declined.
SUPER ROACH SCARE
A NEW breed of cockroach that can withstand harsh winters has been found in New York.
Biologists said the species, 'Periplaneta japonica', is well documented in Asia but had never been confirmed in the US. They said there was little cause for concern because the insects would compete with existing cockroaches for space and food.
TULISA DRUGS CHARGE
Singer Tulisa Contostavlos has been charged in connection with the supply of Class A drugs.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) announced that it had authorised the Metropolitan Police to charge the former X Factor judge with "being concerned in" the supply of drugs. She will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on December 19.
CRACKING THE EGGPLANT
A SAN Francisco start-up company backed by Microsoft's Bill Gates is scouring the planet for plants that can replace chicken eggs.
Hampton Creek Foods' first product is an egg-free mayonnaise now sold at Whole Foods Markets.
NEVER TOO OLD TO ROCK
ROCK veteran Neil Young is to be among the headliners for next year's British Summer Time festival in London's Hyde Park.
The 68-year-old will be accompanied by his band Crazy Horse at the concert on July 12. Young, who last played Hyde Park in 2009, will be supported by The National and Tom Odell.