Drug addict steals from own mother to fund habit

A DESPERATE drug addict who stole from his own mother in order to fund his habit apologised to police when they caught him.

Colin Brown, 31, went round to his mum Patricia Brown’s home in the Duddingston area of Edinburgh three days in a row and stole jewellery, a games console and games which he sold on for a total of £368.50.

The court heard that Brown started taking heroin in February and sold the items on at Cash Generator to fund his habit.

Today at Edinburgh Sheriff Court, he pled guilty to four counts of theft between September 29 and October 1 this year.

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Number of ‘forced adoptions’ rocket as more children taken into care

More children than ever are being taken into care

By Cara Sulieman

THE NUMBER of parents having their children taken off them and put up for adoption has rocketed in the last three years.

The number of cases where social services have stepped in and forced adoption have doubled in the past three years and a record number of kids have been taken into care.

Figures obtained from Scotland’s councils under the Freedom of Information laws reveal that 203 children were put up for adoption by social workers last year.

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Cancer patient stranded after string of cancelled flights

Left to right: Panos Vikis, Nicola McAndrew, Patricia and Alison Vikis

By Cara Sulieman

A CANCER patient was left facing a nightmare before Christmas after a catalogue of travel disasters.

First Patricia Vikis and her husband Panos were left stranded in Cyprus last Wednesday after the collapse of what was Scotland’s biggest airline Flyglobespan.

Disappointed but pragmatic, they instead booked a flight back with low-cost airline easyJet – on for that to be cancelled too owing to heavy snow.

And because the only seats they could get were to London, it meant they also had to cancel their connecting British Airways flight from Gatwick to Edinburgh.

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Little boy forced to get rid of favourite toy

By Cara Sulieman

A LITTLE boy is being forced to get rid of his favourite toy car – because spoil sport neighbours say it shouldn’t be parked next to their bikes.

The silver electric car was the last present four-year-old Elliot Mckeown’s mother gave him and he had only been out on it twice since he got it.

But now Trinity factors are forcing the family to move the toy from the complex’s bike store by April 10 or they will remove it themselves.

Elliot lives with his grandparents Patricia and David Mckeown in Timber Bush, Leith, because his mother is too ill to look after him.

“Bullying”

And Patricia has branded the move “bullying”, saying that the factors are being completely unreasonable.

She said: “He is the only child in this development and it is my belief that this is nothing but bullying.

“This is symptomatic of our society’s attitude to children and it’s no surprise that we have an army of disaffected youth.

“If Trinity Factors go ahead with this I will need to call the police because it would be theft.”

“Hypocrites”

She also said that the factors were being hypocrites for enforcing one rule and allowing people to do what they like in other respects.

The conditions of the deeds state that only bike can be kept in the bike store where Elliot’s electric car is kept.

But the retired teacher claims that other rules are being broken and the factors are turning a blind eye.

She said: “The property manager is absolutely right in what she is saying in that according to the deeds the bike store is for bikes only.

“However, this smacks of victimisation and an easy target because none of the other deeds of condition are being adhered to.

“We have satellite dishes and window boxes in some flats and they are not supposed to be allowed but no-one is enforcing that.”

Problem not just with car

One of the neighbours who complained, but did not want to be named, said that the problem wasn’t just with the electric car.

They said: “The bike shed was being used for storing all sorts of things, not just the electric car.

“Things were starting to appear that weren’t bikes, like a roof rack and car batteries. I don’t see why the electric car can’t be stored in one of the flats.”

But another neighbour, a 33-year-old man, said: “I don’t have a problem with it, it’s a kids toy – what difference does it make?

“My girlfriend and I have got a couple of bikes in the bike store and we have no problems with the electric car being stored there.”

Trinity factors have defended the move, saying that it was a democratic decision by the residents of Timber Bush.

Gillian Green, the property manager said: “While we try and be as flexible and accommodating as possible, there is no doubt that the child’s ride-on car is restricting access for push bikes.

“The residents have discussed it at their annual general meeting, which took place last month and we were instructed to once again ask to have the car removed elsewhere.”

They also pointed out that other items in the bike store that had been complained about would be removed.