Homeless. Australian Kevin Cook, who lives on a beach and stole a pink towel from someone's back yard to use as a blanket. Owing to mandatory sentencing laws, Cook received a 12-month jail sentence.
The accident-prone NHS, whose u2.8bn bill for clinical negligence claims is peanuts compared to what could be claimed, according to Action for Victims of Medical Accidents chief executive Arnold Simanowitz. According to a US study, there are an estimated 320,000 medical accidents in the NHS each year, 82,000 of which are due to negligence, with only 15,000 of these leading to legal action.
The Law Society, which faces a rather large claim on the Solicitors' Indemnity Fund. Bristol businessman Michael Birkett is suing the society for u1m, 25 years after he first claimed he was the victim of dishonest and incompetent solicitors who were partners in the firm Fulwell & Partners. Birkett, who is represented by James Munby QC, has applied for a High Court judicial review of the society's decision not to compensate him.