Following anonymous criticisms of councillors on Twitter, South Tyneside has won a court case that will force the social networking site to reveal the identities of some of their users.
The council were so determined to discover the identity of the person who called themselves 'Mr Monkey' that they went to the US courts, using British taxpayers' money.
South Tyneside council claimed that three of their councillors had "false and defamatory" statements published about them.
May 2011 Archives
Following anonymous criticisms of councillors on Twitter, South Tyneside has won a court case that will force the social networking site to reveal the identities of some of their users.
For people who are too lazy to walk a few extra meters to the supermarket, despite being perfectly capable of doing so, new hefty fines are to be introduced.
Norman Baker, the MP responsible for local transport, has urged supermarket chains to clamp down on those who abuse disabled parking bays.
Currently, local authorities are able to punish motorists on public highways but they have no power to act on private land.
A deputy High Court judge was found guilty of assault after he beat his wife for delaying to make his evening meal.
James Allen QC and his wife Melanie, a deputy county coroner, attempted to cover up his crime by lying in court, and they have both consequently been accused of perjury.
Judge Allen became furious with his wife when she put off preparing his dinner in order to offer advice to their cleaner, whose mother had just been diagnosed with cancer.
As soon as the cleaner left, Judge Allen turned on his wife and punched her three times in the face.
Despite Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg's recent call for graduate internships to be paid, the government's own website the Graduate Talent Pool currently advertises hundreds of unpaid schemes.
Mr Clegg, amongst many others, believes that by asking graduates to work full-time for no pay employers are breaking national minimum-wage laws.
He also expressed concern that unpaid internships would have an impact on social mobility, since only those who could afford to would be able to spend several months working with no money coming in.
Despite having a successful football career playing for England, Newcastle, Tottenham and Rangers, Paul Gascoigne's current financial situation is a disaster. Owing £32,000 in taxes, he faces bankruptcy proceedings, but these were dropped at a hearing at London's High Court.
The hearing, which lasted just a few minutes, resulted in the case being dismissed after the judge was informed that Gascoigne had come to an agreement with his creditors, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.
HMRC can attempt to make you bankrupt if you owe more than £750 in unpaid tax.
A teacher of traditional Caribbean dance has won an employment tribunal against Bristol City Council for racial discrimination.
Ripton Lindsay, originally from Jamaica, taught dance classes regularly at Millpond Primary School for seven years before an incident occurred in that resulted in his unfair dismissal.
After separating two fighting children by grabbing their collars, Mr Lindsay was told by the then-headmistress Susan Eriksson, "This is not how we do it in British schools."
A recently widowed transsexual woman, in Texas USA, is battling her mother-in-law over her late husband's estate.
Nikki Araguz, who was born a man, is to have her marriage to fire-fighter Thomas Araguz II voided after her mother-in-law, Simona Longoria, argued that the marriage was not legal under Texas law where same-sex couples are not allowed to marry.
Mr Araguz died recently fighting a fire and has left an estate worth $600,000. His mother and ex-wife, Heather Delgado, hope the inheritance will go to Thomas Araguz's two sons from his marriage to Delgado.
A man convicted of burglary is appealing against his eight-month jail sentence on the grounds that it contravenes the European Human Rights Convention.
Wayne Bishop, on the advice of his lawyer Ian Wise QC, has won permission to take his case to the Court of Appeal after claiming that as the main carer for his five young children they would be "bereft" without him.
In sentencing Mr Bishop to eight months imprisonment, Mr Wise believes that the judge "had no regard to the interests of the children whatsoever".
A Surrey businesswoman was the victim of medical negligence when she received a botched facelift from a doctor who "played God" with her life.
Penny Johnson, a financial and IT consultant, was awarded over £6.1million compensation after Dr Le Roux Fourie admitted liability.
Mrs Johnson initially wanted Dr Fourie to conduct some minor surgery to her nose and to reduce the dark circles beneath her eyes. But Dr Fourie convinced her to have a full facelift, further work done on her forehead and eyes and also a replacement of her existing breast implants.
Official figures of the number of people stopped and held under schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act show that Asians are up to 42 times more likely than white people to be targeted by police.
The counter-terrorism power enables police to detain people entering the country for up to nine hours without any reasonable suspicion that they have committed a crime.
Those being held do not even have the rights of a suspected criminal: they do not have a right to remain silent, failure to answer questions can be treated as a criminal offence, their interviews can take place without a lawyer present and if they wish to use a lawyer they must pay for the legal fees.
The Metropolitan police have paid out £20,000 in compensation to four women whose allegations of slavery and abuse were not properly investigated.
Kidnapped from Nigeria and smuggled into the UK, these women were beaten and abused as they worked as slaves for families in north London. But when they finally found the courage to approach the police with their stories, the police "did nothing to commence an effective investigation".
One of the women first went to the police for help in 2004, while she was still in slavery.
From next month, owners of uninsured vehicles will face considerably stricter laws and could even be fined without actually driving their car.
The government will launch an advertising campaign to publicise the new rules that will come into force from 20 June.
The new law will ensure that anyone who owns an uninsured vehicle can be prosecuted, instead of only being caught by the police while driving.
With all sorts of public figures from football players to bank managers using them recently, the injunction and super injunction have come under intense public scrutiny. Coinciding with all this media interest, a review of their use, or overuse, has been conducted by a committee of top judges and libel lawyers.
Lord Neuberger, chair of the committee, is expected to recommend that the media should be allowed to attend injunction hearings in the future.
Injunctions are gagging orders that prevent the media reporting details of people's private lives, and super-injunctions are so secretive that their very existence cannot be revealed.
In a recent case of suspected child abuse, police in Michigan, USA, are investigating a woman who advertised a two-year-old girl for sale on eBay.
They were made aware of the case after they received several calls about the advert. One caller, assuming it was a hoax, had even bid $1,000 (£618). On finding their bid was accepted, the bidder contacted the police, asking them to get the advert removed.
The woman who posted the advert claims it was intended to be a joke.
When 36-year-old Ana Catarian Bezerra was caught masturbating at work, she didn't get fired. She took her employers to court and won the right not only to masturbate during working hours, but also to watch porn on her work computer.
In an unprecedented employment law case in Brazil recently, judges ruled that Ana, an accountant and mother of three, was legally entitled to a 15-minute break every two hours in which she could 'relieve' herself.
Ana claimed that she suffers from a rare chemical imbalance which causes anxiety and hypertension and the irrepressible urge to masturbate.
Dominique Strauss-Kahn has handed in his resignation as head of the International Monetary Fund stating that he wishes to devote "all his energy" to fighting the charges of sexual assault which he currently faces.
Strauss-Kahn was arrested on 15 May on charges of committing a criminal sexual act, attempted rape, sexual abuse, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching. The alleged victim is a maid in a New York hotel.
The IMF head has denied "with the greatest possible firmness all of the allegations that have been made" and handed in his resignation with "infinite sadness".
A recent report shows that more than 180,000 immigrants remain in the UK despite their work permits having expired and this may lead to the government reconsidering the ID card scheme.
The Commons' Committee of Public Accounts, which is chaired by Labour's Margaret Hodge, said that the UK Border Agency is not able to monitor migrant workers effectively. And while they estimate that 180,000 people may be staying in the UK illegally, they do not "have the right information to know if this is an accurate estimate".
Mrs Hodge recommends that the coalition government revisits the idea of ID cards for foreign nationals, which Labour had planned while they were in power.
Nationwide strikes in schools, universities, courts and other public sector services could take place this June, following the introduction of a new pension scheme.
The changes devised by Labour ex-minister Lord Hutton, which involve scrapping generous final salaries and also putting the retirement age back for some civil servants, have spurred trade unions to ballot for strike action.
The Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers are two trade unions that will be balloting this week. The other unions await the outcome of the Trades Union Congress talks with the government.
Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, whose story was immortalised in the recent film The Social Network, have again attempted to re-open their contract law case against Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, but their appeal has been rejected.
In 2008, the Winklevoss twins were paid an out-of-court settlement of $65million, following their accusation of Zuckerberg for breaking their oral contract. They alleged that Zuckerberg had stolen their idea for a social networking website and had illegally used source code that was meant to be used in the Winklevoss's own site.
Despite Zuckerberg's continued denial that he stole the idea of Facebook, in order to put a stop to "rancorous litigation" the twins were given compensation of $20million cash and $45million of stock valued at $36 a share.
Scott Raisbeck faces jail after admitting to Newcastle Crown Court that he helped Raoul Moat during the gunman's week on the run from the police after he killed one person and wounded two others.
Raisbeck has been found guilty of perverting the course of justice and handling stolen goods after admitting to his part in Moat's crime.
During his rampage, Moat stole a Ford Transit van from Hartlepool borough council, which Raisbeck hid for him and also disposed of its keys. Raisbeck also hid other pieces of evidence that could have proved useful to the police in the manhunt.
Living in the nation's capital can be difficult for any child but for many it is worsened by not having a stable home life. With almost 11,000 children currently in care in London, it has been estimated that a further 2,000 foster carers are needed to give these children homes.
The Fostering Network charity carried out the survey that revealed these figures. They discovered that the hardest age group to find foster homes for was 11 to 15-year-olds. In 94% of London's boroughs there was a shortage of families who were willing to take on teenagers.
The charity published this survey to raise awareness about fostering and to coincide with the start of Foster Care Fortnight.
While most people are familiar with the concept of identity theft, they may not be aware that fraudsters also target property titles. By impersonating a property owner, criminals can take out a mortgage on a property they do not own, keep the money and leave the real owners in terrible debt.
This kind of property title theft has resulted in the Land Registry paying out millions of pounds in compensation.
Since 2006 the Land Registry, the government's department for recording land ownership in England and Wales, has reported losses of more than £26million in compensation payments to victims of property title fraud.
Young women who have survived and escaped forced marriages will be speaking about their experiences at a series of roadshows around Britain.
The roadshows have been set up by the charity Karma Nirvana, which raises awareness about forced marriages and honour-based abuse and aims to help women in trouble.
As the school holidays approach, Karma Nirvana warn that the risk of forced marriages increases since girls, and boys, are taken out of the country to be married against their will.
Thanks to mortgage lenders offering high loan-to-value ratio mortgages, the number of first-time buyers is growing. During April 2011, 27% of mortgage approvals were for properties valued at less than £125,000 and 79% were for properties worth less than £250,000.
The total number of mortgage approvals in April rose 1.8% on March's figures - from 47,577 to 48,435.
Property experts claim that first-time buyers are realising that renting costs are rising and so becoming a homeowner is making more sense "especially with lenders now keener to offer fixed-rate deals".
New burglary sentencing guidelines are to be introduced that will encourage judges and magistrates to take into account not only the defendant's culpability but also the affect of the crime on its victims.
The Sentencing Council for England and Wales has proposed having a range of sentences of different severity depending on the intent and impact of the crime.
For example, in a case of non-domestic burglary in which no victim was harmed, entry was not forced and low-value goods were taken, a community sentence would be more appropriate than a jail term.
The number of different legal highs readily available in shops and online has rocketed in the last year and the European Union drugs agency has warned there will soon be too many to control.
The European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA), in association with law enforcement agency Europol, said that new legal highs are appearing at an "unprecedented pace". They discovered 41 new types of psychoactive substances in 2010, compared to 24 found in 2009 and 13 in 2008.
Fifteen of the 41 new substances are synthetic cathinone derivatives, which imitate the effects of ecstasy, cocaine and amphetamines. This group includes the drug mephedrone, also known as MCAT. This type of drug was banned in Britain last December.
Two men whose murder convictions were quashed in 2007 have been allowed to appeal the Supreme Court's decision to deny compensation for their imprisonment.
Their claims for compensation had previously been rejected because the men were not seen to be victims of a miscarriage of justice. However, there have been different definitions of 'miscarriage of justice' since a Law Lords ruling in 2004.
One definition, which had caused many cases to be rejected in the past, meant that defendants had to prove their innocence beyond reasonable doubt. But Lord Phillips, president of the Supreme Court, recently said that a new test should be set up to "ensure that innocent defendants are not precluded from obtaining compensation" on this basis.
When signing up for online products and services, 93% of Brits never bother to read the terms and conditions that set out their contractual rights, a recent survey revealed.
The investment specialist Skandia conducted the survey to prove just how easy it is for consumers to sign up for products and services online without really knowing what their consumer rights are.
The main reason given, by 43% of people surveyed, for not reading terms and conditions was that they were boring and difficult to understand. So it is hardly surprising that nearly six in ten (58%) people claimed that an instruction manual or utility bill would be more interesting to read and more than one in ten (12%) people said they would rather read the phone book than terms and conditions.
Millions of customers who were mis-sold PPI (payment protection insurance) by their lenders will now be able to claim compensation after the banks dropped their legal challenge against the FSA's new rules on selling the insurance.
PPI is a special type of insurance that protects the policy holder if they are unable to make loan or credit card repayments due to redundancy, illness or an accident.
However, banks and other lenders mis-sold PPI policies on a mass scale to borrowers from the late 1990's onwards. Customers were sold unsuitable policies that would never pay out or they were charged for policies they did not know had been taken out on their behalf.
Patients detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 have won the right to bring a test case to seek judicial review against their hospital's smoking ban.
Chadwick Lodge Hospital, Milton Keynes, does not allow its patients to smoke inside the hospital in accordance with the Health Act 2006. However, it also bans patients from smoking outside in the hospital's grounds.
The patients are arguing that the hospital's policy is a breach of their common law right to smoke. They accept that the right to smoke inside has been curbed by the Health Act but argue that by banning their right to smoke outside, the hospital has breached the Equality Act 2010 and unlawfully breached common law.
The latest public figure to obtain an injunction from the court preventing the press from reporting the details of their private life is another famous footballer.
The highly-paid sportsman has obtained a gagging order that prevents his name and the details of an extra-marital affair from being made public by the media.
However, the 18-year old with whom it is alleged he had the affair has been named as Kimberley West. She claims to have had a three-month affair with the footballer after they met in a nightclub.
Road safety campaigners have revealed that a driver with 39 penalty points on their licence, the highest number in Britain, has not been banned from driving.
Drivers with 12 points on their licence usually face a six-month driving ban which is why campaigners are so shocked that a driver with 39 penalty points has not been removed from the roads.
The information was obtained by BBC West by making a Freedom of Information request to the Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). The driver is from the Swindon area but the DVLA would not reveal the offences that had led to the accumulation of 39 penalty points.
On 3 April 2011, an eleven man jury found that Ian Tomlinson, the newspaper seller who died during the G20 protests two years ago, had been "unlawfully killed".
Now PC Simon Harwood, who struck Mr Tomlinson with a baton and pushed him to the ground, could face manslaughter charges.
The jury found that PC Harwood had "deliberately and intentionally" hit Mr Tomlinson with his baton and had then pushed him to the ground with "excessive and unreasonable force", despite admitting to the jury that he did not think Mr Tomlinson posed a threat.
A senior police officer is calling for the Home Office to review the law on cyber-stalking, saying that the current law is out-of-date and inadequate.
Greater Manchester Assistant Chief Constable Gary Shewan wants the Government to give police more power to seize computers used to harass victims over the internet and more power to obtain IP addresses from internet service providers.
Under the current law, the police can charge cyber-stalkers under the Protection from Harassment Act and the Malicious Communication Act.