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California couple charged with torture of 10 children in 'horrific' conditions - Wednesday briefing

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Jonathan Allen and Ina Rogers are accused of carrying out ‘sadistic’ mistreatment of their children in a home filled with rotten food, human and animal waste

Anna Freeman

16 Mayo 2018 13:38

Hello, this is Anna getting you caught up on Wednesday' top news stories and best reads.

Today's headlines

Horrific and sadistic crimes

A California couple are facing multiple charges of torture and child abuse after their 10 children were discovered in ‘horrific’ conditions at their home. Jonathan Allen, 29, the children’s father, denies seven counts of torture and nine charges of abusing the children, who are aged between four months and 12 years old, in a suburban house in Fairfield, north of San Francisco. The mother, Ina Rogers, 31, will be charged with nine counts of child abuse on Wednesday, prosecutors said. She has denied any wrongdoing. The children had reportedly suffered puncture wounds, burns, bruising and injuries consistent with being shot with a pellet gun. Sharon Henry, the county’s chief deputy district attorney, said they were tortured ‘for sadistic purposes’. Police found their home filled with rotted food and human and animal waste.

An innovator dies

Tom Wolfe, a journalist and novelist who brought like to California surfers, astronauts and Manhattan’s moneyed elites, penning works like The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby, The Right Stuff and Bonfire of the Vanities, died on Monday in Manhattan aged 88.

North Korean U-turn

North Korea has abruptly cancelled high-level talks with Seoul and threatened to pull out of a planned summit with Donald Trump if the US insists on the regime giving up all of its nuclear weapons unilaterally. A North Korean official said the country had no interest in a summit with US if it was based on ‘one-sided’ demands, dealing a blow to Donald Trump’s plans to curtail their nuclear programme completely.

‘A new dawn in Malaysia’

Malaysian politician Anwar Ibrahim has been freed from jail, saying the opposition's election victory was ‘a new dawn’ for Malaysia. He was jailed on sodomy and corruption charges after falling out with the government. Malaysia's new Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad sought a pardon for Anwar, which was granted on Wednesday morning. Mahathir has promised to step aside for Anwar to become prime minister within two years.

What we like

Must-read

This New Yorker piece about the rage of Incels - a group of men who are involuntarily celibate and who hold deeply misogynist values - is a fascinating exploration into yearning for total male supremacy.

Spotlight

‘Why are we living in an age of anger?’ asks The Guardian’s Zoe Williams in response to passive aggressive notes and society’s preoccupation with being furious.

Culture

A New York Times article this week said we are living in the age of the ‘twink’ - a time when boyish, skinny men are the dreamboat order of the day. This article from The Atlantic explains what that actually means.

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