Gibraltars Offshore gambling sites on the Internet have revolutionized the sports betting industry

Gibraltars Offshore gambling sites on the Internet have revolutionized the sports betting industry. The offshore betting sites compete for the bettors’ money, and are constantly improving consumer services

Monday, 8 September 2014

'Hatchet' Gerard Kavanagh shot dead in Costa del Sol pub

Gerard Kavanagh was shot dead in a bar on the Costa del Sol Notorious gangster Gerard “Hatchet” Kavanagh was gunned down by two masked assassins yesterday as he relaxed in a Spanish pub.

The 44-year-old was riddled with up to nine bullets by the hitmen, who burst into the Costa del Sol bar in Elviria, near Marbella, just before 4pm Irish time on Saturday. A source said: “The shooting had all the hallmarks of a professional hit.” Terrified gangster Kavanagh tried to flee after spotting the assassins coming through the door of Harmons Irish Bar in Elviria, a 20-minute drive east of Marbella. But it was too late for the doomed crime boss, who fell to the ground in a hail of bullets surrounded by a pool of his own blood. A burnt-out BMW X3 was discovered nearby shortly after the shooting, which happened in broad daylight around 4pm Irish time. Spanish police were last night carrying out a forensic search of the vehicle to see if it was used as the getaway car. A source said: “The gunmen were wearing balaclavas and were dressed from head to toe in black. “The shooting had all the hallmarks of a professional hit. It looks like they picked a time when they knew the bar wasn’t going to be busy. “It is believed the victim was trying to flee when he was shot because many of the nine bullets he took hit him in the back.”

Notorious Irish gangster Gerard 'Hatchet' Kavanagh shot dead in Costa del Sol bar  A police spokesman said: “A fatal shooting has occurred near to Marbella. We are investigating.” Witnesses to the shooting told last night how the gunmen shot their victim in the back as he talked with a mystery woman – and finished the job off as he tried to run for his life. One said: “He was sat on a chair in a pair of green swimshorts talking to a woman I’d never seen before. “The men rushed up to him from behind and shot him two or three times in the back and, as he tried to run for the safety of the bar, finished the job off with a shot to the back of the head. “They turned him over to see if he was dead before fleeing. It was absolutely horrific. “The police took the dead man’s black Audi away and undertakers removed his body around 8pm.” Another said: “The killers left the engine on their getaway car running. “I’ve been told it was found burnt out at a supermarket just down the road.” A pal, who asked not to be named, said: “The dead man was lying face down just inside the door of the bar when I saw him. “He was dressed in just a pair of shorts and there was a lot of blood.” Harmons bar is sandwiched between two restaurants in a pretty, tree-lined square just off the N340 dual carriageway running along the Costa del Sol, which was once dubbed the Road of Death because of the number of accidents along it. The bar was closed last night after the horror shooting. A woman who answered a side door said: “Sorry we’ve got nothing to say. We’re not going to speak.” The owner of a neighbouring bar said: “I don’t want to say anything. This is very bad for business.” Kavanagh’s body was taken to the Costa del Sol State Hospital for X-rays last night to determine exactly how many bullets were in his body. Kavanagh, from Ben Bulben Road in Drimnagh, West Dublin, was a senior member of the notorious Kinahan gang, controlled by godfather Christy Kinahan, who is based on the Costa del Sol.

The gang is involved in drug debt collection, drug dealing on an international scale and is suspected of ordering several executions in Crumlin-Drimnagh feud. Kavanagh was jailed for four years in 1996 when he was just 25 for dealing heroin in the Crumlin area. Back then his defence had argued that Kavanagh was only before the court as he had developed a drugs habit forcing him to work as a courier for gangs. The Dublin Circuit Criminal Court was told that he was involved in a chain of drug distribution headed by drug barons. Following his sentence, Kavanagh paired up with Tallaght gangster Paul Rice, who was jailed for 10 years in July 1995 after pleading guilty to the robbery of a bank in which shots were fired. Together they rose to the top of the drug ladder before Kavanagh packed up and moved to Spain where he was reported to be supplying most of Tallaght and a large area of Drimnagh with illegal drugs. He has been living in Benalmadena for almost a decade with his wife and two children where his daughter is a star of the show-jumping circuit and his son is a professional boxer. Security sources say that the shooting has now raised fears for the safety of the Kinahans.

The scene of the shooting is near to the luxury Don Carlos Hotel, which this weekend is hosting the 19th US-Spain forum. The Spanish ambassador to the USA and the American ambassador to Spain were among guests who opened the three-day event and security had been stepped up significantly in the area. Kavanagh was jailed for four years in March 1996 after he was caught with €3,500 worth of heroin and cannabis. In court, Detective Eamonn Maloney said that Kavanagh was “a major figure in drug supplies in the Crumlin, Drimnagh and Dolphin’s Barn areas of Dublin for some time”. He was forced to flee Ireland after he was targeted by anti-drug vigilantes and the Crininal Assets Bureau.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Irish man shot dead in suspected gangland murder in Spanish bar

Irish man shot dead in Spain was a well-known criminal who closely associated with some of the biggest drug dealers in Ireland and who gardaí believe was the intended target of a botched murder bid last month. The dead man, in his 40s and from Dublin, was singled out in a bar on the Costa del Sol on Saturday afternoon by two masked gunmen who fired at least nine shots, most of which are believed to have hit the victim.

The victim tried to run to safety when he saw the gunmen coming for him but collapsed on the premises when wounded. He was unresponsive when the emergency services later arrived at the scene. He was taken by ambulance to hospital but was pronounced dead shortly after arriving. The murder occurred just before 5.30pm local time at an Irish bar in Elivira, on the outskirts of Marbella. A BMW the gunmen are believed to have been driven to and from the scene in was later found burnt out by Spanish police.

Sunday, 31 August 2014

SCARFACE MURDER:A man identified as Amsterdam crime boss Samir B. was murdered in Benahavis, Marbella

A man identified as Amsterdam crime boss Samir B. was murdered in Benahavis, Marbella in Spain on Wednesday. image: The 36-year-old, also known as “Scarface,” was killed in the Spanish town near Marbella on Wednesday afternoon, Het Parool reports.


News reports speak of a gangland execution. Samir B. was in the Monte Halcones mall in the picturesque mountain village around 2.00pm when he was shot multiple times in his back and head by two assailants. He was apparently shot on his way out of a storefront in the shopping center. Witnesses called the authorities, but the emergency services could do nothing to resuscitate him.

The Dutch-Moroccan victim from near Sloterdijk in Amsterdam West has been named in connection with sizeable drug deals. writes that he was the largest drug dealer in the city, and he actually marked his cocaine blocks with his own stamp. B. had relocated to Spain a few years back, but apparently his hold on the Amsterdam underground remained. Het Parool writes that B. had a long career in the underworld of Amsterdam West. He grew to be one of the biggest crime bosses in the city.   In June 2010 he was arrested there and extradited to the Netherlands, in connection with the death of 12-year-old Danny Gubbels in Breda; the boy died when someone opened fire on his parent’s trailer and B. was named. He was released after only a few days in prison here, for lack of evidence.   His execution in Benahavis is being investigated by the local police, as well as the Spanish military police force, Guardia Civil, and national police agents. Earlier this month, another of Amsterdam’s criminal leaders, Derkiaoui van der Meijden, was also killed in Amsterdam Oost.

Monday, 25 August 2014

240 kilos of cocaine have been found in the hull of a yacht in Huelva

240 kilos of cocaine have been found in the hull of a yacht in Huelva Agents from the National Police, in collaboration with the United States DEA, have arrested six people; four in the province of Huelva and two in Madrid in the three searches carried out as part of the same operation. The investigation started at the beginning of April, when large amounts of cocaine has been arriving in Europe by sea, carried out by an international organisation. Further investigations revealed the head of the organisation is a Spaniard, who lives in Colombia, and who had returned to Spain recently, presumably, to coordinate a consignment of the drug. The rest of the organisation are all Colombian, and had the job of providing logistic support on land for the reception and extraction of the drug.

Marbella boxer ring return after trainer shot

MATTHEW MACKLIN, the Marbella based boxer, whose proposed fight against Argentine fighter, Jorge Sebastien Heiland in a WBC eliminator on August 30 was postponed after his trainer, Jamie Moore, was shot in Marbella, is set for a swift ring return. His opponent is as yet unnamed, however, Macklin is expected to undertake his 36th professional bout next month on September 27, on the Felix Sturm - Paul Smith WBA middleweight ‘Super’ title fight undercard in Kiel, Germany. If as expected Macklin wins, the three-time world title challenger expects to be returning to Dublin for the Heiland fight on November 15. Macklin, hopes the Heiland fight will bring him a fourth shot at a world title, as promoter Eddie Hearn looks to guide him to the big title that has eluded him so far.

Irish teenager being held on attempted murder charge in Costa del Sol

An Irish teenager is in custody on an attempted murder charge after a violent street fight on the Costa del Sol. The 17-year-old was part of a group of four Irish holidaymakers who got into a row over a girl during a night out in the upmarket resort of Puerto Banus near Marbella. His brother allegedly punched a friend unconscious before the teenager kicked him in the head as he lay on the ground. The victim was rushed to the nearby Costa del Sol Hospital before being transferred to a specialist centre in Malaga so he could be treated for “life-threatening” head injuries.

Doctors have told police he cheated death because of the rapid medical attention he received. The altercation happened around 3am on August 14 in a street a short walk from Puerto Banus port named after singer Julio Iglesias, who owns a house in mountains a short drive away. Investigators say they believe the four men, who had been out drinking together, rowed over a girl. Local police made the arrests at the scene after witnessing the assault from a distance. The injured man, who like the other three Irish holidaymakers involved has not been named, is now being treated in a normal ward after spending several days in an induced coma in intensive care. Police from a specialist anti-violence unit based in Malaga have led the investigation.

A youth court judge remanded the teenager to a young offenders’ institution after quizzing him in a closed court session. His brother, whose age is not known, has been released on bail but is thought to have had his passport taken away from him so he cannot leave Spain. A trial date has yet to be set. The Irish teenager is expected to be held for custody for several months before he is released ahead of trial. A source close to the case said: “The judge quizzed him on an attempted murder charge because medical experts who examined his alleged victim concluded the consequences of the assault could have been much more serious if he hadn’t received rapid medical attention.”

Friday, 22 August 2014

Climate change is gradually turning Spain into a fire zone

Spain’s changing climate and economy fuels wildfire risks.Climate change is gradually turning Spain into a fire zone – and a change in the economic climate is inflaming the situation.

The combined forces of climate, economic and social change are leaving Spain increasingly exposed to the damaging and costly effects of wildfires.

A research group reports that a mix of factors is behind the rise in both the numbers of forest fires and the areas of land scorched over the last 40 years.

Vanesa Moreno, a researcher in the geography department at the University of Alcalá in Madrid, and colleagues studied the pattern of fires in Spain from 1968 to 2010.

Although Spain, like much of southern Europe, is expected to become more arid with global warming, and although some Mediterranean vegetation is adapted to − and even benefits from − natural fire outbreaks, the picture is not a simple one.

In the moister Atlantic north-west of the country, there are two fire seasons − at the end of winter, and in the summer. In the Mediterranean region, fires are more frequent in the long, hot summer.


Monday, 18 August 2014

Fire in Benahavis

A fire has broken out in Benahavis, near Marbella. This photo was taken on the road between Estepona and San Pedro. The cause of the fire is still not yet known, but follows in the wake of a serious fire in Los Montes de Malaga exactly a week ago. The fire in Los Montes devestated 260 hectares of natural park. So far this year there have been 20 such fires in Malaga Province, which experts say is within the average range of annual fires.

Saudi prince's convoy in Paris attacked by gunmen

Heavily armed men have attacked a convoy of cars belonging to a Saudi prince, stealing 250,000 euros (£200,000; $330,000), police say. The convoy was heading through northern Paris on its way to Le Bourget airport late on Sunday evening when it was raided, reports say. The gunmen seized a vehicle carrying the money and documents, later releasing the driver and two others. The convoy was said to have come from the Saudi embassy. No-one was hurt. The gunmen, reportedly armed with Kalashnikov rifles, targeted a Mercedes mini-van at 21:15 (19:15 GMT) on the northern ring road, or peripherique, at Porte de la Chapelle, on the edge of Paris.

The motorcade, belonging to a Saudi prince, was targeted by eight people in two separate vehicles who pointed their guns at the driver of the Mercedes, forcing him to stop, French media reported.

The men then drove the vehicle away with the driver and the two other Saudis inside. No shots were fired but the Saudis were later freed and the vehicle eventually found burned out.

"In the vehicle there was roughly 250,000 euros in cash and official documents from the embassy," police union spokesman Rocco Contento told BFM TV news.

There has been a weekend of terror for immigrants in Tangiers

Immigrants who are waiting in Tangiers to cross into Spain have been attacked and their homes ambushed. The NGO’s at the scene fear the aggression against the Sub-Saharans will force them to try to cross the Strait to escape whatever the weather conditions.

The problem started on Friday near the Tangiers airport. The Sub-Saharan’s were told a bus was going to Spain and some 20 women and their children took up the offer. But the bus took them to a local dance festival of African culture called Twiza which was being held in Tangiers for some days. When they realised they had been fooled they returned home, and met a group of Moroccan men armed with machetes and sticks who started to hit them.

Five of the women suffered stab wounds and others suffered abuse. Spanish volunteer, Helena Maleno, was among them and believes the violence is being organised by criminal groups. She was sexually molested by one of the men. She said the Moroccans speech was always the same, ‘We want to clear up here, go to Spain’. Last year an immigrant died when he fell off a wall during a police raid, bringing charges of murderers against the police amid violent scenes as you can seen in the video below.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Ebola Alert In Alicante After Man Taken Ill

An ebola alert has been activated in Alicante, Spain, after a young Nigerian man was admitted to hospital with fever and vomiting. Spanish health authorities activated alert protocols after the man showed "several symptoms" of the disease.

The alert comes a week after a Spanish priest who contracted ebola while working in Liberia died in hospital in Madrid. The man was taken ill in the eastern city of Alicante Father Miguel Pajares was the first European infected by a strain of the virus that has killed more than 1,000 people in West Africa.

He was airlifted from Liberia to Spain on August 7 after becoming infected while working for a non-governmental organisation there. The 75-year-old was flown to Europe for treatment with his co-worker Juliana Bohi, a nun who has since tested negative for the disease. Elsewhere, 17 ebola sufferers have fled a Liberian clinic raided by looters who stole blood-stained sheets - sparking fears the virus will spread.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

ISIS terrorists discovered in Morocco

MOROCCAN anti-terror services working in collaboration with Spanish police officers have broken up a jihadist terror cell in Morocco. In total nine members of the cell, reported to be linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), were detained on Thursday in the three Moroccan cities of Fes, Tetouan and Fnideq. The terrorists were working to recruit new members to the cell with the objective of sending them off to fight in the conflicts currently underway in Syria and Iraq.

It is believed that some of the group made frequent visits to the Spanish city of Ceuta, located on the north coast of Morocco, with the intention of converting people to their cause and raising financial aid. The Spanish Interior Minister has linked those arrested with ISIS, and confirmed that they had received training in the use of weapons and the manufacture of explosives with the goal of participating in suicide attacks or travelling to conflict zones in the Middle-East.

It has also come to light that there were plans to carry out a terror attack on Moroccan soil. Computers and other data-storage devices used by the jihadists are currently being examined for evidence of concrete plans. The investigation remains open within the three cities, with police from both nationalities continuing to work together. Government sources commented that the operation reflects on the excellent relationship that exists between Spain and Morocco when combating terror in the region.

Luggage thieves caught at airport

THE Guardia Civil have arrested two people under suspicion of stealing suitcases from distracted airport passengers. Within the Guardia Civil brief of the Safer Tourism Plan which has been put in place to prevent theft from tourists visiting Malaga, the officers at the airport have caught two people who were taking national flights with only hand baggage and then taking advantage of distracted tourists arriving at the baggage carousels to steal their luggage while they were looking away. On several occasions they also, allegedly, pick-pocketed passengers as well as taking their hand baggage while they were retrieving their check in luggage. Investigating officers calculate that they have stolen around €21,000 worth of luggage and wallets.

Friday, 15 August 2014

Ebola outbreak vastly underestimated

The death toll from the world's worst outbreak of Ebola stood on Wednesday at 1,069 from 1,975 confirmed, probable and suspected cases, the agency said. The majority were in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, while four people have died in Nigeria. The agency's apparent acknowledgement the situation is worse than previously thought could spur governments and aid organisations to take stronger measures against the virus. "Staff at the outbreak sites see evidence that the numbers of reported cases and deaths vastly underestimate the magnitude of the outbreak," the organisation said. "WHO is coordinating a massive scaling up of the international response, marshalling support from individual countries, disease control agencies, agencies within the United Nations system, and others." International agencies are looking into emergency food drops and truck convoys to reach hungry people in Liberia and Sierra Leone cordoned off from the outside world to halt the spread of the virus, a top World Bank official said. In the latest sign of action by West African governments, Guinea has declared a public health emergency and is sending health workers to all affected border points, an official said. An estimated 377 people have died in Guinea since the outbreak began in March in remote parts of a border region near Sierra Leone and Liberia. Guinea says its outbreak is under control with the numbers of new cases falling, but the measures are needed to prevent new infections from neighbouring countries.

"Trucks full of health materials and carrying health personnel are going to all the border points with Liberia and Sierra Leone," Aboubacar Sidiki Diakit president of Guinea's Ebola commission, said late on Wednesday. As many as 3,000 people are waiting at 17 border points for a green light to enter the country, he said. "Any people who are sick will be immediately isolated. People will be followed up on. We can't take the risk of letting everyone through without checks."

Arrested for allegedly throwing two suitcases of cocaine out of a hotel window

Poice have established that a 39-year-old Irish man who was arrested in Spain after allegedly throwing two suitcases of cocaine out of a hotel window is a criminal who was previously targeted here in a proceeds-of-crime case. The suspect, who remains in custody in Valencia, has been named as Philip Grendon from Greenfort Drive, Clondalkin, and also with an address at Spiddal Road, Ballyfermot. Grendon's brother, Brian, is a member of a major west Dublin drugs gang who have been constant targets of gardai for 15 years. Already this year, officers based in Ballyfermot have been involved in the seizure of more than €1m worth of drugs from this crew who are considered one of the most organised and longest-established in the country.

The bizarre incident for which Grendon was arrested in Valencia happened last Friday just before 10pm at the four-star Tryp Valencia Oceanic Hotel. Police are said to be working on the theory that the alleged drugs trafficker, who had checked into the hotel a few hours earlier, confused noise from other guests entering and leaving their rooms with a rival gang trying to steal his drugs after suffering a paranoia attack. It is alleged that Grendon also removed ceiling tiles in his room, along with an air vent in an apparent attempt to hide the stash.

The 55kg of cocaine in the cases would have an estimated street value of more than €3.8m in Ireland. Sources who know Grendon say they are "surprised" that he would be trusted by a gang to be in charge of such a huge drugs haul. "Philip was always known to be a paranoid individual, but if what the Spanish police are saying is true, this is taking paranoia to a whole new level," a senior source said. Grendon's younger brother is convicted heroin dealer Brian Grendon (37), who was jailed for six years in December 2002 after he was busted with almost €2m worth of heroin in Palmerstown, west Dublin, the year before. shootings Brian Grendon was previously described in court by a senior detective as being linked to a gang who had in the past "used fatal shootings of anyone who compromised their business".

Philip Grendon appeared in court in Dublin in February 2012 when gardai prosecuted him under proceeds of crime legislation. Some of his associates were targeted by gardai as part of Operation Jumbo in 2002. They included murder victim David McCreevy (23), who was shot dead in Tallaght in 2002.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Spain to probe cigarette smuggling Crime.


EU's anti-fraud office on Monday urged Gibraltar and Spain to launch legal action after it found signs that organised crime was behind a rise in cigarette smuggling in southern Spain, AFP reports. The European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) made the recommendation after completing a probe it launched in August 2013 at the request of Madrid into a sharp rise in cigarette smuggling across the border between Gibraltar and Spain between 2009 and 2013. "The OLAF investigation has raised a number of concerns regarding the link between a significant increase in the size of the Gibraltar market for cigarettes over the past four years and the subsequent increase of cigarette smuggling across the frontier," a spokesman for the anti-fraud office said. "The concerns include indications of the involvement of organised crime," it added. "The OLAF final case report, and recommendations to initiate judicial proceedings related to the findings of the report, have been sent to the Spanish General State Prosecutor and to the Gibraltar Attorney General." Widespread cigarette smuggling between the tiny, low-tax British territory of Gibraltar to Spain is a major irritant in their frayed diplomatic relations. Smugglers buy the cigarettes in large volumes in Gibraltar at a price much lower than is charged in Spain, where the government in 2012 increased the sales tax to help plug a gaping public deficit. Spain in August introduced stringent border checks at its border with Gibraltar, leading to lengthy queues for motorists, in what it said was a move aimed at clamping down on cigarette smuggling.
But Gibraltar argues the stepped-up border controls are in retaliation for the installation of an artificial reef in its waters that has prevented Spanish boats from fishing there. Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo welcomed the anti-fraud office report and said the territory wanted to work together with Spain to investigate the cigarette smuggling. "We wish any necessary investigations in this and in all areas to be carried out jointly between the competent Spanish and Gibraltar authorities in a genuine spirit of cooperation," he said. The government of Gibraltar said cigarette smuggling was already being brought under control thanks to the "draconian" measures it introduced in January. These include the introduction of searches of vehicles crossing into Spain and giving customs and police officers greater powers to fight smuggling. The Spanish government meanwhile said the anti-fraud office's report "justified" its "work in the fight against fraud and the underground economy". Spain ceded Gibraltar to Britain in 1713 but has long argued that it should be returned to Spanish sovereignty. London says it will not do so against the wishes of Gibraltarians, who are staunchly pro-British.

First Spaniard dies of Ebola

confirmed by the Madrid's health department that a 75-year-old Spanish priest, Miguel Pajares has died in Madrid’s Carlos III hospital from Ebola. The Spanish priest who was recently repatriated from Liberia, Africa last Thursday had been in isolation in Saint John of God hospital in the capital of Monrovia. It is known that he contracted the Ebola virus from the Director of the Hospital after a visit. The director is also known to have died. Miguel Pajares was being treated with an experimental drug ZMapp which is designed to fight the deadly virus, but failed to respond to the medication.

The drug ZMapp is a treatment that is made by a private US company and is still in intensely early stages and had previously been only tested on monkeys. In a statement the health ministry said that the drug arrived to the hospital late on Saturday evening to treat the 75-year-old. The drug ZMapp though in very early stages, was only allowed by the Spanish drug safety agency under “exceptional importation” to be used in the use of a non-authorised medication because of an incident where a patient’s life is in danger.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

World's Second Richest Man Advises a Shorter Workweek

Telecom billionaire Carlos Slim thinks we should have a shorter workweek, and he's started with his own major company. He advises a standard three-day workweek with 11-hour workdays and a retirement age of “70 or 75.” He’s not the only renowned businessman and strategist to advocate the calming of our unnecessarily frenetic pace. Slim made the announcement at a recent business conference in Paraguay covered by the Financial Times. “With three workdays a week, we would have more time to relax; for quality of life,” Slim told news agency “Having four days [off] would be very important to generate new entertainment activities and other ways of being occupied.” The billionaire chairman recently instituted an optional four-day workweek at Telmex, his company of over 50,000 employees. Five-day Telmex workers on contract to retire at age 50 now have the option shorten their workweek and keep full pay at the cost of a later retirement age. No doubt, the workers are thrilled at the opportunity.  Slim is not the first visionary billionaire to advocate the innovative approach to modern work. In a recent interview with Vinod Khosla, Google cofounder Larry Page gave different rationale on why we should find a “coordinated way to just reduce the workweek.”  "If you really think about the things that you need to make yourself happy—housing, security, opportunities for your kids—anthropologists have been identifying these things. It's not that hard for us to provide those things.” Page said, “The amount of resources we need to do that, the amount of work that actually needs to go into that is pretty small. I'm guessing less than 1% at the moment. So the idea that everyone needs to work frantically to meet people's needs is just not true." Anna Coote is the head of social policy at the London’s New Economics Foundation. She notes in her New York Times article that Germany and the Netherlands have stronger economies than the United States and Britain, yet they have shorter workweeks.  Coote also says the shorter workweek helps solve “overwork, unemployment, overconsumption, high carbon emissions, low well-being, entrenched inequalities and the lack of time to live sustainably.” The average retirement age in the U.S. has been on the rise since the early ‘90s. Although many people work past the recommended retirement age because they must, others continue on simply because sitting idly at home gets old quickly. For many, retiring as a capable body defies the American spirit and a lifetime of ingrained productivity. However, when faced with the option family or work, family comes first. There is a balance to be found. Everybody wants more vacation time, but Americans are increasingly hesitant to leave the workforce. Why not address the two issues with the logic of Carlos Slim? The five-day workweek was made the standard in 1938, but times have changed drastically since then. With modern advancements aiding us, we no longer need to work the same hours as Hitler.  0 COMMENTS Jump to Comments PREVIOUS STORY What I Learned After Giving Up Sex for a Year NEXT STORY This 7-Year-Old Gives Better Parenting Advice Than Any Book TAGS:Brad Pitt, Chuck Palahniuk, Dark Horse Comics, Edward Norton, Fight Club

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Barcelona Slaps Fine On Airbnb And Considers Taking Action To Ban Access To The Site

Barcelona’s Generalitat has fined the holiday rental site Airbnb €30,000€ after detecting that the site displayed advertising for more than 11,000 ‘irregular’ properties that are not registered with the government as official tourist accommodation. Launched in 2008, the site Airbnb is one of the most popular travel sites for holiday accommodation and short stays with listings in over 34,000 cities in 190 countries around the globe. The website also offers rooms in private homes, which is illegal under Catalan legislation. According to various sources, the government of Cataluñya is also considering blocking access to the site, should Airbnb not remove the ‘illegal’ property listings from their site. Airbnb has warned that the fine imposed by the government will only slow down Barcelona’s tourism, with the city currently in the top three most popular cities on the site, only after New York and Paris. In February, Airbnb announced that it had contributed 128 million Euros towards Barcelona’s economy, as well as boosted employment with over 4,000 jobs.

Monday, 21 July 2014

Eva Longoria attended the Global Gift Gala in Marbella on Saturday, with the actress looking as chic as ever in a royal blue romper.

Not joining in? Judging by the brunette beauty's outfit she wasn't planning on playing much golf

Not joining in? Judging by the brunette beauty's outfit she wasn't planning on playing much golf


One busy lady! Among many other projects Eva is working on TV show Devious Maids, which directs and produces

Eva Longoria attended the Global Gift Gala in Marbella on Saturday, with the actress looking as chic as ever in a royal blue romper.

The jumpsuit hugged the petite starlet in all the right places while Eva dressed it up with elegant white stilettos, dramatic make-up and a sleek quiff in her hair.


Gorgeous girls! Actress Eva Longoria cuddles up to Spanish presenter Isabel Gemio at the Global Gift Gala in Marbella on Saturday

She accessorized the look with delicate drop earrings and a simple pendant necklace.

When it comes to her fashion choices, the humanitarian admits she doesn’t over think it and leaves it up to the trusty hands of her stylist, Charlene Roxborough.

‘I don’t pay a lot of attention to [fashion]. My stylist does, though. I just put it on if it’s pretty,’ the L'Oréal Paris global ambassador confessed to People magazine last year.
A worthy cause: The event raised money for The Eva Longoria Foundation and The Bertin Osborne Foundation

A worthy cause: The event raised money for The Eva Longoria Foundation and The Bertin Osborne Foundation

Joined by actor Terrance Howard, who kept things cool in a dark V-neck T-shirt, a cream blazer, jeans and aviator sunglasses, the pair put their best foot forward at the Global Gift Celebrity Golf Tournament in a bid to raise money for The Eva Longoria Foundation and The Bertin Osborne Foundation at La Quinta Golf & Country Club.

Clearly thrilled with the bash, afterwards Eva took to Twitter to write: ‘Thx 4 all the support @LaQuintaGolf #GlobalGiftGolf Tournament, fun event raising money w/@BertinOsborne, @EvaLongoriaFoundation @GlobalGiftFound.’

The day before the event Terrance and Eva, who stepped out in a yet another cute playsuit, enjoyed a friendly lunch in the coastal town before the Desperate Housewives actress kicked back on the beach with boyfriend Jose Antonio Baston.

Flawless: The 39-year-old opted for an elegant half-up half-down hair do with a voluminous quiff


Star studded: Actor Terrence Howard was also in attendance

Opening up to Ocean Drive magazine in March, the 39-year-old described herself as ‘definitely very happy.’

As for whether the couple are going to start a family the producer explained: 'It is not on the horizon right now, so it’s not something I think about.’

Indeed, there’s never much down-time for the busy star, who is currently working on a series called Devious Maids, which she directs and produces.

'I believe in the show. Organically, it was a ground-breaking show for Latinas, for being the first [English-language] show that cast five Latinas in the lead roles, and making sure they were the moral compasses of the show,' Eva explained.

Flawless: The 39-year-old opted for an elegant half-up half-down hair do with a voluminous quiff

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Lionel Messi may have just been named the most valuable player at the World Cup in Brazil but that is unlikely to soften the blow of having to pay Spain's largest tax bill

Lionel Messi may have just been named the most valuable player at the World Cup in Brazil but that is unlikely to soften the blow of having to pay Spain's largest tax bill — a whopping €53 million ($71 million)On top of that €53 million, the FC Barcelona star could also have to pay an extra €3 million on undeclared advertising and sponsorship earnings for the years 2007 to 2009.

 The huge sum paid by Lionel Messi this year covers taxes on his salary, as well as on his assets and advertising deals. It also includes €22.4 million in outstanding tax for 2010, 2011 and 2012. 

 Over the past seven years, the Argentina captain has paid more than €100 million to Spain's tax office, Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia reported. 

 This amount has increased proportionally to the player’s income.  

 According to the business magazine Forbes, Lionel Messi earns more than €48 million a year from salary and sponsorship, making him the fourth highest-earning athlete in the world. 

 He’s also the highest-paid football player with a €20 million annual salary, ahead of Real Madrid’s player Cristiano Ronaldo.

 Last year, Lionel Messi and his father were accused of defrauding the Spanish tax office of over €5 million ($7 million) but cleared the tax debt before a court appearance.‏

Spanish navy ship tried to divert two vessels heading to the port of Gibraltar by wrongly claiming they were in Spanish waters

Map in Spanish of Gibraltar
Map in Spanish of Gibraltar (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Spanish navy ship tried to divert two vessels heading to the port of Gibraltar by wrongly claiming they were in Spanish waters, Europe Minister David Lidington said.
It is the fifth time since 2011 that Ambassador Federico Trillo has been hauled in over the long-running dispute over the tiny British peninsula off the southern coast of Spain.
Prime Minister David Cameron also raised the incident with his Spanish counterpart Mariano Rajoy on the sidelines of a European leaders' summit in Brussels on Wednesday.
"I am extremely concerned by the actions of a Spanish Navy vessel which sought to redirect two commercial vessels heading to and from the Port of Gibraltar, wrongly claiming they were in Spanish waters," Lidington said.
"The vessels were in waters off Gibraltar, and the actions of the Spanish Navy vessel constitute a breach of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea."
He said it was a "cynical attempt by the Spanish government to disrupt Gibraltar's economy, in contravention of international law".
There was no immediate reaction from Madrid.
Spain ceded Gibraltar to Britain in perpetuity in 1713 but has long argued that it should be returned to Spanish sovereignty, and the territory remains a source of diplomatic tensions.
Relations between London and Madrid became particularly strained last year after Gibraltar dropped 70 concrete blocks into the sea in July, in what its government said was an attempt to create an artificial reef.
The move had the effect of also blocking Spanish fishing boats from operating close to the airport runway, and Madrid responded by introducing stringent border checks.

Barcelona To Tackle Dog Walkers: Get a License Or Receive a Fine

The Catalan capital is set to unleash a new law that will force dog owners to get a license or face fines up to €600. From October, dog owners will be required to obtain a “civic license” before letting their pets walk around without a leash within one of Barcelona’s 103 designated dog parks. An “animal abuse” register will also come into effect with a prohibition of leaving animals tied up for more than two hours or leaving animals locked in a car for more than 20 minutes.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

real estate company Reyal Urbis filed for insolvency after failing to renegotiate debt with its creditors.

Spain's property market crash claimed another victim on Tuesday, as real estate company Reyal Urbis filed for insolvency after failing to renegotiate debt with its creditors.


The move takes the property developer, which had 3.6 billion euros ($4.8 billion) of debt at the end of September, closer to becoming Spain's second-largest bankruptcy after Martinsa Fadesa, which defaulted on 7 billion euros of debt in 2008.

Dozens of property companies have collapsed in Spain, where house prices have fallen around 40 percent since their 2007 peak. With the country locked in a deep recession, analysts expect prices to fall further still.

Spain's banks were crippled by the property market bust, eventually requiring the state to agree a European bailout for its lenders of almost 40 billion euros last year. Indebted property firms have asked banks for debt relief but patience is wearing thin among lenders saddled with soured property assets.


Reyal Urbis is 70 percent owned by construction magnate Rafael Santamaria and its creditors include Santander, BBVA, Bankia and Banco Popular.

The company, which valued its property portfolio at 4.2 billion euros in June 2012, said it would continue to operate as permitted by Spanish insolvency laws.

Its insolvency petition now goes to court and its fate will be in the hands of a judge.

Reyal Urbis said Santamaria would remain at the helm of the company and he still hoped Reyal Urbis could reach a deal with its creditors, given "the good will of all negotiating parties".

The company had until Feb. 23 to reach a debt restructuring deal with the banks or file for insolvency. Sources close to the matter told Reuters on Friday that creditors had rejected the company's 3.6-billion-euro proposal.

Trading in the company's shares was suspended on Tuesday, Spain's stock market regulator said. The stock had plunged 99 percent since June 2007 to close at 0.124 euros on Monday.

At the end of 2011, Reyal Urbis owned some 888 finished homes in a country where over a million homes lie empty. The company also had 8 million square metres of land for development and 237,000 square metres of commercial property, including offices, shopping centres, industrial property and hotels.

Monday, 10 December 2012

Emotional eating is when people use food as a way to deal with feelings instead of to satisfy hunger. We've all been there, finishing a whole bag of chips out of boredom or downing cookie after cookie while cramming for a big test. But when done a lot — especially without realizing it — emotional eating can affect weight, health, and overall well-being.

diets arent the answer emotional eating

Not many of us make the connection between eating and our feelings. But understanding what drives emotional eating can help people take steps to change it.

One of the biggest myths about emotional eating is that it's prompted by negative feelings. Yes, people often turn to food when they're stressed out, lonely, sad, anxious, or bored. But emotional eating can be linked to positive feelings too, like the romance of sharing dessert on Valentine's Day or the celebration of a holiday feast.

Sometimes emotional eating is tied to major life events, like a death or a divorce. More often, though, it's the countless little daily stresses that cause someone to seek comfort or distraction in food.

Emotional eating patterns can be learned: A child who is given candy after a big achievement may grow up using candy as a reward for a job well done. A kid who is given cookies as a way to stop crying may learn to link cookies with comfort.

It's not easy to "unlearn" patterns of emotional eating. But it is possible. And it starts with an awareness of what's going on.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012



You may be lost in the addiction to busyness if…

  • Your usual response to “how are you?” is “so busy”, “crazy busy” or “busy but good”
  • You spend time worrying about how busy you are going to be tomorrow
  • You get angry when your spouse or friends aren’t as busy as you
  • Your busy life keeps you up at night thinking about everything you didn’t get done
  • You make a point of letting people know that you stay at the office after hours
  • You check email several times a day
  • You zone out during conversations thinking about everything you have to do
  • You volunteer for things you don’t care about
  • You spend time complaining about how busy you are
  • You make list after list to make sure you don’t forget anything during your busy day
  • You allocate time each day to clean your desk or organize your stuff
  • You regularly eat in your car
  • You use a phone in the car because “it’s the only time you have to talk”

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Police have several leads in the investigation of the large forest fire that started a week ago.

Suspicions that it was started malicously has possibly strengthened. Sources claim that the fire spread quickly because there was more than one fire. Witnesses stated inter alia, have seen an unidentified jeep coming from a farm between Ojén and Marbella exactly where the fire then got an awesome course. In Marbella, it was announced yesterday that it is now able to restore electricity, water and telephone networks in all affected areas. It is now under the companies just the kind of disruption that is "normal". In areas Elviria Ricmar has repaired water pipes, power lines and 3000 meters telephone and fiber optic cable. It has also been launched several campaigns to restore nature and conduct tree plantings. Biologists say that tree planting may be necessary until next year. The hotel chain Fuerte Hoteles has among other things promised to donate a tree for every hotel guest you have in Marbella. The hotels have also started a fundraiser where guests can help by buying a tree, which will then be planted in the affected area.

Friday, 7 September 2012

experts believe we can actually become "addicted" to stress.

Stress can be physical,And then there’s the kind that’s in our heads — that OMG I’m so overwhelmed right now feeling. While psychological stress has some definite downsides (chronic freak-outs may increase our risk for cancer and other diseases), take a moment to exhale. In moderate amounts, stress can boost our focus, energy, and even our powers of intuition.

Still, in some cases, stress does more than light a productivity-boosting fire under our butts. Both emotional and physical stress activate our central nervous system, causing a “natural high,” says Concordia University neuroscientist and addiction specialist Jim Pfaus. “By activating our arousal and attention systems,” Pfaus says, “stressors can also wake up the neural circuitry underlying wanting and craving — just like drugs do.”

This may be why, experts believe, some of us come to like stress a little too much.

Type A and Type D personalities — or people prone to competitiveness, anxiety, and depression — may be most likely to get a high from stressful situations, says stress management specialist Debbie Mandel. Stress “addicts,” Mandel says, “may also be using endless to-do lists to avoid less-easy-to-itemize problems — feelings of inadequacy, family conflicts, or other unresolved personal issues.”

Some stress junkies have difficulty listening to others, concentrating, and even sleeping because they can’t put tomorrow’s agenda out of their minds, explains Mandel. Others tend to use exaggerated vocabulary — craaazy busy right now, workload’s insane!! And some begin to feel anxious at the mere thought of slowing down their schedule.

But psychologist and addiction researcher Stanton Peele cautions against labeling anyone a stress addict. “Only when that pursuit of stress has a significant negative impact on your life could it qualify as addiction,” he said, adding that many people are able to effectively manage — and in fact thrive under — high stress conditions. (Think: Olympic athletes or President Obama.)

 Study: Stress Shrinks the Brain and Lowers Our Ability to Cope with Adversity

For budding stress “addicts” or for those who just, well, feel overwhelmed, here are some tips to dial down that anxiety:

  • Seek professional help if you’re verging on burnout. (Not only can hashing it out with a therapist take a load off your mind. Some studies suggest it also boosts physical fitness.)
  • Do something creative. Mandel recommends carving out a once-weekly time not to think about tomorrow’s agenda by painting, cooking, writing, dancing, or anything else that’ll take you off the clock temporarily.
  • Take it outside. Numerous studies show spending time in nature improves general well-being, lowers anxiety, stress and depression, and even boosts self-confidence. Especially for women. (As it turns out, most addiction recovery centers offer outdoor-immersion programs.)
  • Calm down quickly. If you really don’t have time for any of the above, these 40 tricks to chill take five minutes or less.

Some of us may seek out stress a bit more excessively than others and struggle to just relax. It takes skill to handle hectic agendas and long lists of responsibilities — without losing sleep or feeling frazzled. So try these tips and try not to freak out.

Worried that you or someone you know seeks out stress a little too much? Think stress addiction is a myth? Tell us about it in the comments section below.

For those red wine drinkers who’ve been feeling morally superior about all the health benefits of the relaxing glass or two sipped during dinner, there’s some bad news on the horizon.

 Turns out, those glasses of wine would be a lot healthier if they were non-alcoholic, a new study shows.  Spanish researchers led by Gemma Chiva-Blanch of the University of Barcelona found that non-alcoholic red wine reduced blood pressure in men at high risk for heart disease better than standard red wine or gin, according to the study published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation Research. Although the reduction in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure was modest, decreases of just 4 and 2 mm Hg have been associated with a 14 to 20 percent reduction in heart disease and stroke, the researchers pointed out. “The daily consumption of dealcoholized red wine could be useful for the prevention of low to moderate hypertension,” they concluded.  Although there have been many studies on the impact of moderate drinking on health, the findings have been mixed, with some studies showing a benefit and others suggesting none. The new study found that 3 ounces of gin a day had no impact on blood pressure, while consumption of regular red wine led to a small, but not statistically significant, improvement. The new study suggests that if you’re going to have a drink, red wine would be the healthiest choice, said Dr. Kelly Anne Spratt, a heart disease prevention specialist and a clinical associate professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Still, Spratt said, “while there are those of us in cardiology who believe in the benefits of red wine, we want to be wary. We’re not going like gangbusters recommending people go out and start drinking. There are a lot of problems associated with drinking, like weight gain, cardiomyopathy, alcoholism, an increased breast cancer risk in women who consume two or more drinks a day.” Chiva-Blanch and her colleagues suspect that blood pressure improvements were due to the impact of polyphenols, a red wine component, on nitric oxide. The theory is that nitric oxide molecules help blood vessels relax, which allows better flow and more blood to reach the heart and other organs. For the new study, Chiva-Blanch and her colleagues followed 67 men with diabetes or three or more cardiovascular risk factors. During the study, the men were all required to consume the same foods along with one of three drinks: 10 ounces of red wine, 10 ounces of non-alcoholic red wine or 3 ounces of gin. During the 12 week study, the men tried each diet/beverage combination for four weeks at a time. The researchers determined that the standard red wine and its nonalcoholic counterpart contained equal amounts of polyphenols, an antioxidant which has been shown to decrease blood pressure. Men who drank regular red wine saw minor reductions in blood pressure – too small, in fact, to be statistically significant. Those who drank gin with their meals saw no change in blood pressure. But men who drank non-alcoholic red wine saw a blood pressure decrease of about 6 mm Hg in systolic and 2 mm Hg in diastolic blood pressure. Chiva-Blanch and her colleagues concluded that their findings show that the alcohol in red wine actually weakens its ability to lower blood pressure.

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Marbella Forest Fire

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Major wildfire in Malaga leaves elderly Briton dead and his wife missing

One person was confirmed dead and another missing on Friday night after a major wildfire Affected Municipalities of the Coin, Alhaurin el Grande, Mijas, Marbella and Ojén, in Málaga province. The victim is a British man aged 78 was found Whose charred body in the area of ​​Las Blanquillas, inside the city limits of Ojén. His wife has not yet been found. Meanwhile, a couple in late fifties was taken Their hospital with burns to 60 percent to of Their Bodies. Both lived in a detached home inside the Marbella residential estate of El Rosario. A mother and her two children were found hiding inside a cave in Ojén and taken to hospital to be Treated for smoke inhalation. Five other people Were Also Evacuated from Their Homes. The fire was Extending to the Sierra de las Nieves even as the chief of the firefighting department Málaga, Manuel Marmolejo, Announced That a new front had opened up and Reached the area of ​​Juanar, where two hotels had to be Evacuated. Marmolejo said Extending the wildfire was with "great virulence." The blaze Began around 6.50pm on Thursday and soon extended to a perimeter of Between 50 and 60 kilometers, said Marmolejo. An Estimated 1.000 hectares of land Have Been Affected.

Friday, 31 August 2012

Marbella eight urbanisations has been evacuated. 4,000 people have been evacuated from their homes.

The village of Ojen and eight urbanisations in Marbella have been evacuated. 4,000 people have been evacuated from their homes.


The fire broke out on Thursday afternoon and has affected Coín where some 60 homes have had to be evacuated. The fire was still burning overnight so the terrestrial fire fighters continued to work overnight, according to the fire fighting Infoca.
The extinction of the blaze was complicated by the strong hot wind known locally as the ‘Terral’.
Three of the four fronts were brought under control just after midnight.

The fire is also affecting Alhaurín El Grande and Mijas where homes have been evacuated in the Entrerrios area, according to the Junta de Andalucía.

The Barranco Blanco urbanisation in Coín is close to the fire, and there were fears that non-forestry zones could be affected.

In Calahonda there are flames in the urbanisation between Calle Cristóbal Colón and Residential Princess Park. The upper zone of Calahonda is being evacuated.

Two people have been seriously injured with burns. They were in the urbanisation El Rosario where five homes have been affected by the flames. The two injured were taken to the Costa del Sol Hospital in Marbella a 4.30am this morning. One of them has burns to 50% of their body.

The AP-7 Motorway was for a time overnight for a while.

The Mayor of Marbella, Ángeles Muñoz, has confirmed that several urbanisations have been evacuated, including La Mairena, Elviria, the area of Las Chapas and Molinillo where the fire is concentrated and continues to advance.

The Hotel La Cala Resort has also been evacuated of its 200 guests.

Those evacuated have been told to go to the sports centre in La Cala, the sports centre in Las Lagunas or the Mijas Hippodrome.

Between 25 and 30 families have been evacuated from Alpujata on the outskirts of Monda.

13 airborne fire fighting planes were brought in on Thursday afternoon from Málaga, Córdoba and Granada, and they have resumed their work at first light.

Land forces totalled 99 fire fighters distributed in seven brigades, three reserve brigades, five fire engines, five operation technicians and four environmental vehicles.

The fire continues out of control on one front and the Mijas Town Hall has told the residents of la Atalaya to urgently leave their homes. A level 1 has been put in place and that indicates that the prevision for the fire could affect non-forestry assets.

350 firefighters are at the scene this morning and the fire fighting planes have returned to work.

Numerous homes have been burnt out and others seriously affected in Ojén and Marbella. The urbanisation La Mairena has flames affecting several properties.

The situation is particularly difficult in the upper part of Calahonda where residents have been evacuated and there are flames in the urbanisation between Calle Cristóbal Colón and the residential complex Princess Park.

Some 3,000 residents of El Rosario in Marbella have been evacuated, and German couple in their 60’s have been seriously hurt. Marbella Ayuntamiento says they were surprised by the flames and now have burns 40-50% of their bodies. 

Those affected by the blaze are being first treated in the Costa del Sol Hospital in Marbella, and then many suffering burns are being transferred to Málaga to the Specialist Burns Unit in the Carlos Haya Hospital.

People have been sleeping in sports centre in Monda and Marbella and municipal buses have been laid on as transport.

The Junta delegate in Málaga, José Luis Ruiz Espejo, has said today that he suspects the fire could have been started deliberately given its rapid propagation. He said the technicians suspected the fire was man made from the start.

Ground fire fighters worked through the night facing difficult terrain and totalled 99 fire fighters distributed in seven brigades, and three reserve brigades, five fire engines, five operation technicians and four environmental vehicles.

At first light this morning the 17 fire-fighting planes returned to the air.
Five planes which drop earth, four large capacity helicopters, five transport helicopters, two amphibian planes, and a plane for coordination and vigilance.

More than 250 professionals from fire fighting organisation INFOCA are working this morning in Mijas, Marbella, Alhauin de la Torre and in Coín where the fire started.

The Mayor of Marbella, Ángeles Muñoz, has confirmed that several urbanisations have been evacuated, including La Mairena, Elviria, the area of Las Chapas and Molinillo where the fire is concentrated and continues to advance.
Between 25 and 30 families have been evacuated from Alpujata on the outskirts of Monda.

The fire broke out on Thursday afternoon and has affected Coín where some 60 homes have had to be evacuated. The fire was still burning overnight as so the terrestrial fire fighters continued to work over night, according to the fire fighting Infoca.
The extinction of the blaze is being complicated by the strong hot wind known locally as the ‘Terral’.

Three of the four fronts were brought under control just after midnight.

The fire is also affecting Alhaurín El Grande and Mijas where homes have been evacuated in the Entrerrios area, according to the Junta de Andalucía.
The Barranco Blanco urbanisation in Coín is close to the fire, and there were fears that non-forestry zones could be affected.
The Hotel La Cala Resort has also been evacuated of its 200 guests.

Those evacuated have been told to go to the sports centre in La Cala, the sports centre in Las Lagunas or the Mijas Hippodrome.
13 airborne fire fighting planes were brought in on Thursday afternoon from Málaga, Córdoba and Granada, and they resumed their work at first light this morning.

The fire continues out of control and the Mijas Town Hall has told the residents of la Atalaya to urgently leave their homes. A level 1 has been put in place and that indicates that the prevision for the fire could affect non-forestry assets.

A huge wildfire is approaching the wealthy resort of Marbella on Spain's Costa del Sol, where the authorities have evacuated thousands of people.

Flames reached the Elviria area on the edge of Marbella early on Friday.

About 1,000 people have been evacuated from the edge of Marbella, about 3,300 from Ojen and others from a camp site at Alpujata, Spanish media report.

They include at least 300 British expats sent to evacuation centres, the UK embassy told the BBC.

Marbella is famous for its up-market hotels and villas - it is a favourite haunt of wealthy foreigners.

Overnight the fire spread rapidly through a 12km (eight-mile) coastal strip, not far from holiday resorts.

Two people have suffered serious burns and some homes have been engulfed by the fire.

The Costa del Sol is one of Spain's most popular holiday destinations and home to a large British expatriate community.

The British embassy says it is working closely with the Spanish authorities and consular staff have been deployed to assist those affected.

Spain Costa del Sol map

Much of Spain's countryside was left tinder-dry this summer by a prolonged heatwave. There have been major wildfires in northern Catalonia - near the Pyrenees - and on La Gomera, in the Canary Islands.

The wind speed has dropped since Thursday and the air is more humid, so there are hopes that the Costa del Sol blaze can be contained soon.

More than 250 firefighters are battling the fire, helped by 17 aircraft dropping water to douse it, Spain's El Pais news website says.

The fire started on Thursday afternoon in the Sierra Negra area of Coin, near Malaga and has now affected an area of some 1,000 hectares (2,471 acres).

Part of the AP-7 highway was cut temporarily, but other roads are unaffected. It is not yet clear how many homes have been damaged or destroyed.

Monday, 27 August 2012

OwnFone: A Custom-Printed Phone Perfect for Seniors and Kids

Some people need all the latest apps and features available on their smartphone so they can be connected 24/7, while others just want to make a phone call. For the connected crowd, read all the latest reviews onMashable. For the others, check out the OwnFone.

It’s designed to call only the people you want to reach most frequently. In fact, it can only hold 12 contacts. There are no keys or buttons to program. Instead you let OwnFone know who you want to add, and they program and send you a custom-printed phone, about the size of a credit card.

If you lose it, they just print you a new one. You do need to call OwnFone support if you need to change someone’s number, or add a contact.


OwnFone says it plans to come out with a phone that can be customized in braille in the near future. Right now OwnFone is only available in the UK.

Check out the video above for more details and let us know what you think of a printed, pre-programmed cell phone.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Estepona Wild Fires rage on a 2km front

Police and Ambulances hurried to evacuate as wild fires quickly spread our reporter on the scene photographer the devastation


Estepona on Fire

We had a tiny little fire today, which they put out.

Then an hour later, it restarted, and spread along 2 Klm of the coast.

It was horrible seeing old people being run out of their homes, and carried through the smoke by police and ambulances.

The pictures really doesn,t do show bad it really was.many houses have gone



Tuesday, 14 August 2012

London's secret music venue and their livestream act


With an invite-only door policy and super secret location, Boiler Room is London's most exclusive music venue. But elitism isn't the premise for its clandestine nature—in fact, anyone with an Internet connection can easily join in the fun. Using a simple webcam, the crew behind Boiler Room livestreams each set for the world to see free of charge, and each month more than a million viewers tune in to see performances by artists like James Blake, The xx, Roots Manuva, Neon Indian, Juan Maclean and more.


We recently chilled out to the smooth sounds of Brooklyn's How To Dress Well before rocking out to revered musician Matthew Dear, who brought down the house with an intense 40-minute DJ set. Keep an eye out for our interview with Dear, but for now you can get a little more insight into the underground music scene's most talked about livestream show by checking out our interview with assistant musical programmer and Boiler Room host Nic Tasker.

How important is it for Boiler Room to remain secret, at least in its location?

That is quite an important aspect of it, purely because it means when you do shows you don't get a lot of groupies, pretty much everyone in the room is either a friend of ours or one of the artist's. It helps to create a more relaxed atmosphere for the artist and I think they feel less pressure. They're also just able to chill out and be themselves more rather than having people being like, "Hi can I get your autograph?" If the artists are relaxed usually you get the best music.

It seems like there is more interaction among the crowd than at a typical venue, is that intentional?

It's definitely a social place. All the people that come down, most of them we know and they're all our friends. So they come down, hang, have a drink and just chill out, basically. From our very set-up, we do it with a webcam, we're not a highly professional organization but I think that's kind of the charm of it. The main thing is people come down with the right attitude.

How much of the show is prescribed?

I guess that depends on the artist. We never say anything. Literally, whatever they want to do—we're kind of the platform for them to do whatever they want, so if Matthew Dear wants to come and play an hour of noise with no beats, he can do that. That's fine with us, and I think that's why artists like coming to play for us. We're not like a club where you have to make people dance, we don't give a shit if people dance. It's nice if they do and it makes it more fun, but some nights you just get people appreciating the music, which is equally fun.

Is there a particular kind of artist you guys look for and ask to come perform?

No, not particularly, it's just whatever we're feeling. Thristian [Boiler Room's co-founder] has the main say on musical direction, but it's a massive team effort. In London there's five of us, New York there's two, LA there's one and Berlin there's two.

Tonight you had different set-ups for each artist, do you tailor their positioning in the room to their style?

It definitely depends on the act and what kind of music they do. With live bands we found what works nicely is having them opposite each other because it's like they're in rehearsal, like they're just jamming. Which is again trying to give them that chilled out feel that they're just at home jamming and there happens to be a camera there. For some of our shows we've had over 100,000 viewers. When you think of those numbers it's quite scary, but when you're in the room and it's all friends it creates that vibe that people don't mind. You can imagine if you had all those people in front of you it would be a very different situation.

Have you ever thought of Boiler Room as an East London version of Soul Train?

It's never crossed my mind like that, but I can see why you think that. I like to think of us as the new music broadcaster, kind of the new MTV, but obviously we operate in the underground scene mainly. But I like to think that what we do is as revolutionary as what they were doing. We're always growing into something new.

What's up next for Boiler Room?

We have had visual people in doing 3D mapping, and that's something we're looking forward to progressing—doing more with the visuals. We've got the upstairs as well, we're starting to do breakfast shows with some high profile DJs, we're going to be doing that regularly. Each will have an individual format. The next step is progressing the US shows, we're alternating weekly between New York and LA, so the next step is to take Boiler Room to America

Monday, 13 August 2012

Breaking Free of the Co-dependency Trap presents a groundbreaking developmental road map to guide readers away from their co-dependent behaviors and toward a life of wholeness and fulfillment.

Breaking Free of the Co-dependency Trap presents a groundbreaking developmental road map to guide readers away from their co-dependent behaviors and toward a life of wholeness and fulfillment.UK Citizens

This is the book that offers a different perspective on codependency and is strongly recommended by Dream Warrior Recovery as part of a solution based recovery. This bestselling book, now in a revised edition, radically challenges the prevailing medical definition of co-dependency as a permanent, progressive, and incurable addiction. Rather, the authors identify it as the result of developmental traumas that interfered with the infant-parent bonding relationship during the first year of life.US Citizens

Drawing on decades of clinical experience, Barry and Janae Weinhold correlate the developmental causes of co-dependency with relationship problems later in life, such as establishing and maintaining boundaries, clinging and dependent behaviors, people pleasing, and difficulty achieving success in the world. Then they focus on healing co-dependency, providing compelling case histories and practical activities to help readers heal early trauma and transform themselves and their primary relationships.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Gangs of highway robbers are targeting British tourists on holiday in Spain.

Hundreds of visitors in British-registered vehicles or hire cars have had their possessions, passports and money taken in ‘quick and slick’ distraction muggings.

The thieves typically trick their victims with loud noises, apparent accidents, supposed vehicle problems or pleas for help – before stealing bags and belongings from their vehicles. 

Thieves: Hundreds of visitors in British-registered vehicles or hire cars have had their possessions, passports and money taken in 'quick and slick' distraction muggings

Thieves: Hundreds of visitors in British-registered vehicles or hire cars have had their possessions, passports and money taken in 'quick and slick' distraction muggings

As millions of families begin their summer breaks, the Foreign Office has warned British-registered cars are ‘an easy target’ for motorway thieves. 

The number of British tourists ambushed on Spanish roads has soared as the euro crisis has deepened, with the British Embassy in Madrid reporting a 10 per cent rise in the first quarter of this year.

 This is likely to increase further as the peak holiday season begins. 

A spokesman for the embassy said:  ‘Motorists may be driving along the motorway and not notice there’s a car close up behind. 

‘Someone in the other car throws a stone at their vehicle which creates a loud bang. The British drivers pull over to see what has happened and the gang is behind them. 

‘They cause a distraction to steal from them or simply mug them. It’s a growing problem.’

Warning: As millions of families begin their summer breaks, the Foreign Office has warned British-registered cars are ¿an easy target¿ for motorway thieves

Warning: As millions of families begin their summer breaks, the Foreign Office has warned British-registered cars are ¿an easy target¿ for motorway thieves

A hotspot for the gangs is the AP7 motorway between the French border and the Alicante region in southern Spain. 

More than 140 cases of theft on this route were reported to British Consulates last year. 

However, a spokesman said there were likely to be ‘hundreds more’ attacks going unreported across Spain because victims usually contact a British consulate only if they have lost their passport. 

Dave Thomas, consular regional director for Spain, said: ‘Be on your guard against anyone who attempts to stop you or ask you for help.

‘They may well be part of a  gang operating a scam in which an unseen accomplice will rob you of your things.’ 

Stephen and Helen Robinson, from Desford, Leicestershire, had their bags stolen from their Audi Q5 as they stopped to walk their labrador retriever Polly at a service station between Barcelona and Valencia. 

The couple, who are in their 50s, were standing at the boot of their car when a man on a mobile phone asked them how to say something in English. 

While he distracted them, their belongings were taken from the front of the car, despite Polly being inside. 

Mrs Robinson said: ‘It was quick and slick. You may be more tired and therefore more vulnerable when you’ve been travelling, so separate your valuables into different places in the car, and when you stop be aware you may be being watched. You won’t see the accomplice of the person who is distracting you.’ 

In a separate incident, Joy and Alan Horton, from Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk, were driving a Ford Focus hatchback through Spain when they heard a loud bang and pulled over.

A car that had been travelling close behind them also stopped, and while the driver talked to them, his accomplice stole their possessions without them noticing.

Mr Horton said: ‘If you think your car may have been in a collision and you pull over, lock the car as soon as you get out and mount a guard on both sides of the vehicle. Keep all bags and valuables in a locked boot.’ 

Professor Stephen Glaister, of the RAC Foundation, said: ‘Drivers need to remember to stay alert and be ready for unwelcome surprises just as they would be at home.’

Thursday, 26 July 2012

The biggest fines in British maritime history were handed down to a group of Spanish fishermen on Thursday, for illegal fishing in UK waters.

Leo blog : Romanian fishermen are cleaning up their net from small dead fish
 Photograph: Robert Ghement/EPA

Some of the biggest fines in British maritime history were handed down to a group of Spanish fishermen on Thursday, for illegal fishing in UK waters.

Two companies owned by the Vidal family were fined £1.62m in total in a Truro court, after a two-day hearing, in which details emerged of falsified log books, failing to register the transfer of fish between vessels, false readings given for weighing fish at sea, and fiddling of fishing quotas.

Judge Graham Cottle said the family were guilty of "wholesale falsification of official documentation" that amounted to a "systematic, repeated and cynical abuse of the EU fishing quota system over a period of 18 months".

He said: "[This was a] flagrant, repeated and long term abuse of regulations. The fish targeted [hake] was at that time a species of fish on the verge if collapse and adherence to quotas was seen as crucial to the survival of the species."

The Spanish fishing vessels had been sailing under UK flags and were landing fish based on quotas given to British fishermen under the EU's common fisheries policy. Two vessels were involved, but the companies own several other large vessels, capable of industrial-scale fishing.

The offending fishermen, who admitted their guilt earlier this year, were not in court to hear him, having been given leave to return to Spain last night. The offences, dating from 2009 and 2010, relate to two companies, Hijos De Vidal Bandin SA and Sealskill Limited, both owned by the Vidal family. They were fined £925,000 on a confiscation order, plus £195,000 in costs, and an additional fine of £250,000 levied on each of the two companies. Two skippers who were acting under the family's instructions were fined £5,000 each.

Ariana Densham, oceans campaigner at Greenpeace, who was present for the trial and judgement, said that the fines, while welcome, did not go far enough. "This group of people should never be allowed near UK fishing quota again," she said. "The Vidal's right to fish should be removed completely."

She said the offences showed the vulnerability of the EU's fishing quota system to fraud. "The system that allowed this to happen needs to be fixed," she said. "This case is not a one off. It's a symptom of Europe's farcical fishing rules. The Vidals were permitted to fish under UK flags, using UK quota, and receive huge EU subsidies, with none of the proceeds ever feeding back into the UK economy. The system is skewed in favour of rich, powerful, industrial-scale fishing companies, when really it should be supporting low-impact, sustainable fishermen."

There are currently moves under way in Brussels by the fisheries commissioner, Maria Damanaki, to reform the EU's common fisheries policy. The proposed reforms – which include the ending of the wasteful practice of discarding healthy and edible fish at sea – have met stiff opposition, particularly from the French and Spanish fishing industries. Spain has the biggest fishing fleet in Europe and receives the lion's share of the subsidies available for fishing within the EU. A historic agreement was reached among member states last month on the proposals, but they must now pass the European parliament, which is expected to consider the proposals later this year.


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