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China comes to Canary Wharf company’s rescue

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China comes to Canary Wharf company’s rescue

LONDON  – China?s state sovereign wealth fund has bailed out the heavily indebted majority owner of London‘s Canary Wharf, according to the real estate development’s owner.

The Financial Times newspaper reported that the move by China Investment Corporation (CIC) was its first big investment in Britain.

The owners of Canary Wharf, Songbird Estates, said in a statement that CIC would form a consortium with Qatar Holding, the Qatari sovereign wealth fund, and a number of existing investors, to provide more than 800 million pounds (900 million euros, 1.3 billion dollars) in new equity.

The money is needed to pay 880 million pounds that Songbird owes to US bank Citigroup. David Pritchard, the chairman of Songbird, said the deal had saved Songbird from bankruptcy.

“This deal secures the future of Songbird on the best possible basis for our shareholders,” he added.

Qatar will become the largest shareholder in the group with a stake of just below 30 percent with US private investor Simon Glick taking 27 per cent and CIC taking around 19 percent, the Financial Times said.

The Canary Wharf development in east London‘s Docklands houses the offices of major banks and media and newspaper groups.

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Stephen Lawrence: Gary Dobson and David Norris to be sentenced

Gary Dobson and David Norris were found guilty by an Old Bailey jury after a trial based on forensic evidence.
They will be sentenced as juveniles because they were under 18 at the time of the attack, which happened in south-east London in April 1993.Police say the investigation could be reopened if new evidence emerges.
Dobson, 36, and Norris, 35, can expect to receive sentences considerably shorter than would an adult convicted of the same crime under today’s laws.The BBC’s Home Affairs Correspondent Matt Prodger says they could serve minimum prison terms of around 12 years each.
Scientists found a tiny bloodstain on Dobson’s jacket that could only have come from Mr Lawrence. They also found a single hair belonging to the teenager on Norris’s jeans.
Acting Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick, who ordered the 2006 cold case review that led to the convictions, acknowledged that police believe there were five people involved in the murder, but there are currently no “live” lines of inquiry.
“If there was an opportunity to bring the other people who were involved in that night to justice, we would do so,” she said.
Give up others’
In a statement read by his lawyer outside the Old Bailey on Tuesday, Stephen’s father, Neville Lawrence, said the convictions were a moment of joy and relief – but he could not rest until all of those who killed his son were brought to justice. He described the investigation and preparation of the case as “faultless”.
He later told Channel 4 News: “I’m praying that these people now realise that they’ve been found out and say to themselves, ‘yes I did this awful deed, but I wasn’t alone in that action that night and there are other people also guilty of what I’ve done’ and name them.
“I hope before the sentence is passed, they will talk and give the rest of these people that killed my son up.”In an exclusive interview with the BBC’s Panorama, Stephen’s mother Doreen Lawrence said: “I don’t forgive the boys who killed Stephen. They don’t think they have done anything wrong.
“They took away Stephen’s life and there is nothing in their behaviour or anything to show they regret what their actions have done and the pain it has caused us as a family.”Prime suspects’
The original failed investigation into the murder led to the Metropolitan Police being branded as institutionally racist.
Stephen Lawrence was 18 when he was stabbed to death near a bus stop in Eltham, south east London, in April 1993.
Police identified five men who were later named in a damning public inquiry as the “prime suspects”.
By that time, there had already been a catalogue of police errors and two failed prosecutions, one brought by Stephen’s parents.

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