10/03/2017 Spotlight


10/03/2017

The latest news, sport, weather and features from the South West of England.


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The former boss of Torbay Hospital has avoided jail after she admitted

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defrauding the NHS of thousands of pounds.

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NHS investigators say the money was intended for patient care.

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Paula Vasco-Knight paid her husband for work he didn't carry out.

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Earlier this year she pleaded guilty to fraud charges.

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The couple have been given suspended sentences at Exeter Crown Court

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and ordered to carry out unpaid work.

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Paula Vasco-Knight is seen here with her husband

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Stephen on the left, arriving at a previous hearing.

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This is a long way from her ?190,000 job, as one of the most

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powerful woman in the NHS and National Lead for Equality.

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This was the video which showed her winning an NHS

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I keep my registrations which means I have to work a full clinical shift

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Paula Vasco-Knight started as a nurse but worked her way up.

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She became chief executive of the South Devon health care

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One set of ratings had Torbay hospital as the tenth best rated

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And honorary doctorate from the University of Exeter

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Her world came tumbling down after she authorised payment

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of ?11,000 to her husband for graphic design work

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Her career in tatters over an amount of money she could have turned

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She was given a 16-month suspended sentence.

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She has lost out professionally and personally.

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She will never hold that position again and it was

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We are pleased with it and it will send a message

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and will deter others thinking of doing something similar.

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She left the trust in 2014 after an employment tribunal

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over a separate incident that was unrelated,

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She was suspended from her new job last May over these allegations.

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Judge Donald Tate described it as a monumental fall from grace.

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He said as CEO, one could hardly imagine a a more serious abuse

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He looked straight at her and asked "Why?"

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"Why would you get involved in this at all?"

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Leaving court tonight, surrounded by her family,

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Paula and Stephen Vasco-Knight also know that they will also

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have to do 400 hours of community work between them.

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On to other news across the South West tonight -

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A man's been arrested on suspicion of murder in Cornwall.

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The 27-year-old from Launceston is being held following the discovery

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of a body at a home in Town Mills Close.

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House to house inquiries are taking place.

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Five fire crews tackled a large blaze at a recycling

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It was on the Crown Industrial Estate in Taunton.

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No-one was hurt but the building has been closed.

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It's been confirmed that the carcass of a whale washed up

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on a North Devon beach is that of a Fin Whale which was over

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Torridge District Council says it's monitoring the situation to see

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if the carcass is washed back to sea but may have to intervene

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The Royal Navy Frigate HMS Portland returned home to Plymouth today,

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She's been involved in operations in the North and South Atlantic,

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as well as the Mediterranean, and the Indian and Pacific Oceans.

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She came back to emotional scenes as Harriet Bradshaw reports.

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Striking the right tone for a heroes' welcome.

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Hundreds of friends and family members wait in anticipation.

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It's not long before the first sighting

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and after nine months at sea, thankfully,

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This ship has travelled more than 40,000 miles

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But being away from loved ones hasn't been the only

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Coping with the extreme variation in the climate which we experienced

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It is ranged from 50 Celsius in the Gulf at the height of summer

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We had to evacuate a very seriously ill person

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from Tristan De Cunha in the South Atlantic

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and transport him to South America for life-saving surgery.

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So it has been a really positive experience overall.

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Yeah, for nine months, it's really hard.

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And many young families are being reunited.

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Thomas was born on the 14th of December.

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HMS Portland will now have a major refit and,

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once back from leave, most of the ship's company

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will be redeployed to other Devonport-based frigates.

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Onto rugby and it wasn't to be for the Cornish Pirates -

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who are now out of the British and Irish Cup.

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Jersey dominated the match early on and the visiting Pirates

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But they finally rallied in the dying minutes and two tries

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gave their fans something to cheer about.

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But the full time score was 36-20 and Jersey

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Now, let's catch up with the all-important weather. Here's David.

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We are getting quite used to this warning graphic.

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The hill fog back again overnight tonight.

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For some places, it hasn't really cleared.

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But, I think, for some places, a better weekend ahead of others,

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better visibility, turning a bit cooler on Sunday but, hopefully,

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For the moment, though, we have a weather front

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This is the picture for tomorrow a lot of

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The second weather front, though, brings more persistent rain.

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It should be through by lunchtime on Sunday.

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It means better visibility and some sunshine to enjoy and some fine

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But, the mist and the low cloud, again, is causing new problems.

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High routes, especially, are very foggy at the moment.

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That will probably continue through the night.

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Light winds and overnight temperatures a bit lower

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than they were last night, which is between eight

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Tomorrow, it's misty and grey, but it soon brightens up

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and for many of us I think we will keep some sunny

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periods and temperatures of between 14-15 degrees.

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Sunday morning, one rain band leaves us and introduces fresh air,

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brisk north-west winds but it also introduces some sunshine.

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And that really is the sum of it through this weekend.

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Much brighter after the rain clears on Sunday and a fine start

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That's it. From all others. Good night.

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Where the sunshine broke through to the North of Cornwall temperatures

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rose to 17 degrees under the blue skies. For many of us the cloud

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didn't break up through the day, keeping temperatures pegged at

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around about 13 degrees. That was the high today in the London region.

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Mild over night with the blanket of cloud around. Most places dry. Rain

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will work into parts of

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