20/04/2017 Spotlight


20/04/2017

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


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Good evening. night on the BBC

:00:00.:00:13.

The body of a missing Bulgarian woman was found dumped in a suitcase

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near the railway line in Exeter, a jury has heard.

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Gergana Prodanova had only been in the UK for eight months

:00:20.:00:23.

when she was allegedly murdered by her violent former

:00:24.:00:25.

Scott Bingham reports from Exeter Crown Court.

:00:26.:00:32.

Gergana Prodanova was reported missing by colleagues

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at the Great Western Hotel in Exeter on the 8th of August last year.

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Police conducted searches and door-to-door enquiries

:00:40.:00:42.

in the Mount Pleasant Road area of the city, where the couple

:00:43.:00:46.

The body was discovered in a suitcase dumped

:00:47.:00:50.

The jury were told that Gergana was killed by her former partner

:00:51.:00:57.

and the father of their three children, 43-year-old

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Kostadin Kostov, who had followed her to the UK

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Prosecuting, Simon Laws QC said the defendant's motive

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It was, he said, old-fashioned jealousy.

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The court heard Gergana was in a new relationship,

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but still shared a flat with Kostadin Kostov.

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The jury was shown images from CCTV footage of Gergana making her way

:01:24.:01:28.

back to the flat at 8:16pm on the 4th of August,

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And of Kostadin Kostov heading back to the flat two hours earlier.

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After she went to that flat, the flat with just him in it,

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said Mr Laws, Gergana Prodanova was never seen alive again.

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Kostadin Kostov claimed Gergana had flown back to Bulgaria

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after receiving a phone call saying her mother had died.

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Gergana had no reason to disappear, said Mr Laws.

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She disappeared because she had been murdered.

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Kostadin Kostov denies murder, the case continues.

:02:05.:02:14.

A speed of 117 miles an hour has been clocked

:02:15.:02:17.

An electronic warning sign, which also records speeds,

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reveals a quarter of motorists were exceeding the 40mph speed limit.

:02:23.:02:26.

The Dartmoor National Park says the findings are frightening.

:02:27.:02:30.

Somewhere to enjoy a slower pace of life, but not everyone visiting

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Dartmoor is taking things quite so easily.

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The sort of driving we see down here, particularly down

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the straight past the pub, is like a racetrack.

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And it's a complete cross-section of people.

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Lots of old sports cars, motorbikes, everything.

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But they do drive down here incredibly fast.

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This new speed warning sign measures how fast people are driving.

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The highest we've had so far, in the last six weeks, is 117mph.

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To think that people are driving at those sorts of speeds

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across Dartmoor on unfinished roads, where we've got ponies,

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sheep and cattle wandering across the road, is quite horrific.

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I wouldn't want to be a road user, using the road,

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if someone is going 117mph, and I most certainly wouldn't

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want to be an animal grazing these moors with motorists going that

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These visitors couldn't believe the speeds being registered

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Well, I think it's really irresponsible and why

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would you want to drive at that speed when you're in

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Surely the whole reason for being here is to see the view?

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Why would you want to go at those speeds?

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It's not known whether the person recorded driving at 117mph

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The National Park says police patrols are being stepped up.

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The Green Party is proposing electoral pacts with other parties

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in order to defeat south-west Conservative MPs in

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The Greens have offered not put forward a candidate

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in the region's most marginal seat, Plymouth Sutton and Davenport,

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to help the Labour challenger to beat Conservative incumbent

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It's offering the same arrangement to Anne Marie Morris's Liberal

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Democrat challenger in Newton Abbott.

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And there is speculation the move could be offered in St Ives, another

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Well, our political editor, Martyn Oates, joins me.

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There has been talk of a so-called progressive alliance for some time,

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and that's the idea that some, though not necessarily

:04:56.:04:58.

all elements of the Green Party, Labour and the Lib Dems decide

:04:59.:05:01.

they've got much more in common with each other than they have

:05:02.:05:04.

with the Conservatives and that they should combine

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in some way to oppose Conservative candidates.

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We saw it in action for the first time in the recent Richmond Park

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by-election in London, where the Greens didn't

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I think what's noticeable here, given that we are just a couple

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of days into the election campaign, not officially into the campaign

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at all, is how quickly the Greens have moved in the south-west

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to identify these seats and crack on with it.

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What is the likelihood of these deals being struck?

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Well, I think, up to a point, it doesn't matter, which may seem

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an odd thing to say, but I think it's fairly clear

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that the Greens will withdraw these candidates in these seats anyway.

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Clearly, what they'd ideally like is some kind

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of reciprocal arrangement, for instance, Labour not standing

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a candidate somewhere like Totnes, which is a constituency

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where the Greens have quite a groundswell of support.

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Labour in Devon have said they're not really interested

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in this kind of thing, which chimes with the party's

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A Labour source in Cornwall says, although it is unlikely

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there will be a formal pact, informal talks are ongoing,

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and there is more than one way of achieving an end.

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Meanwhile, the Conservative MP for Totnes says this idea of parties

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not standing and trying to encourage people to vote for other

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Martyn will be here with more reaction and analysis on this

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and all the election news so far on The Sunday Politics this

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weekend, at the later time of 3:15pm on BBC One.

:06:29.:06:33.

A Devon motocross rider who was paralysed in an accident

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six years ago is hoping to complete next year's London Marathon.

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And it's all thanks to a new pair of robotic legs.

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I went to meet Spencer Watts from Tiverton to find out

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what it's like to walk again after being in a wheelchair

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Spencer Watts was paralysed from the waist down in a motocross

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When I had my accident, surgeons were telling me,

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I just wanted to prove them all wrong.

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His solution was to tuck his legs behind special bars

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It was nerve-racking at first, but the most important thing

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with motocross is you have to put your leg out

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Obviously, I'm not able to do that, so that was a real big thing to take

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on and not knowing how I would be able to react to that,

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Recently, he was demonstrating these robotic legs at a charity evening.

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Suddenly, the auctioneer started getting people to bid for Spencer.

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I was lost for words, I was all evening.

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Never for one minute did I think that that sort of money would be

:07:41.:07:45.

Spencer says the first time he walked was incredible.

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It was really strange and it felt like I was going to fall over.

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It is like my whole body is floating in the air because obviously

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It is a real strange feeling but, each time,

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You've got a watch, and you tell the watch what you want to do.

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You simply tell the watch if you want to stand up, walk, climb.

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to be up at that height again and walking alongside my children.

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It's great to be able to walk to the park with them.

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Really strange, just to climb down stairs again is amazing.

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Nothing seems to stop this young man.

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Since his accident, he's got married and had two children

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and, now that he can walk at three miles per hour, can you

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Well, he wants to complete next year's London Marathon.

:08:37.:08:47.

Plymouth Argyle's promotion from League Two is to be marked

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with an open-top bus tour through the city.

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The Pilgrims secured their promotion on Monday.

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There's be a civic reception and presentations on the balcony

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of the Council House on Monday, May 8th at 6:30pm.

:08:58.:09:03.

Four Exeter Chiefs players have been named in the England squad

:09:04.:09:06.

It's a first call-up for 20-year-old scrum half Jack Maunder

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Jack only made his Chiefs debut this season.

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They're among 15 uncapped players who've been selected.

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They join Henry Slade and Luke Cowan Dickie and will head

:09:20.:09:22.

David is here with the weather. Any sign of any rain?

:09:23.:09:38.

Not for the weekend but possibly this week. I have been asked that

:09:39.:09:42.

several times today, when is it going to rain next? Not much in the

:09:43.:09:46.

forecast for tomorrow, Saturday or Sunday. Variable amounts of cloud,

:09:47.:09:51.

mostly dry and we will see some sunshine. The high pressure is

:09:52.:09:54.

beginning to weaken, allowing weather fronts to travel from the

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north. Pretty weak by the time they get us but they introduce a fair bit

:10:01.:10:03.

of cloud. Today, bands of cloud coming and going. They few showers

:10:04.:10:09.

across parts of Dorset and Somerset. Overnight tonight, that cloud will

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fade away. It will be dry, turning a bit misty in places, and the risk of

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some folk. Six or 7 degrees the minimum. Tomorrow is a nice day, 20

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of sunshine, patchy cloud, spoiling the sunshine every now and again.

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There might be a light shower in Dorset or Somerset, but nothing to

:10:28.:10:30.

wet the ground, and they talked average of 15 or 16. The event of

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rain will probably be something on Monday or Tuesday, northerly winds

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by them means a cold appeal to the air to start the week is the -- as

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the high pressure moved out to the Atlantic. But some decent weather

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for the weekend. Have a good night. Just one day to

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go before the weekend. Thank you for your company this evening. That is

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all from us. Good night. week for much of the UK and for more

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about that and the UK outlook, Helen Willetts.

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The sunshine make such a difference this time of year, only 12 or so

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degrees under the cloud today but 19 in eastern Scotland not far away

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from St Andrews. Also in north-east England,

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