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Date of birth as PIN code ‘not gross negligence’

Using one’s date of birth as a bank card PIN code may not be the safest option, but it is still a secret combination, Belgium’s financial ombudsman has deemed. Some victims of bank card theft had been refused compensation by their banks who claimed that, because the PIN code was their date of birth...

Bomb-detector conman found guilty

James McCormick, the 57-year-old Somerset millionaire who sold fake bomb-detection kits based on novelty golf-ball finders worth less than €15, is facing jail after being found guilty of fraud, reports the Telegraph’s Melanie Hall . He is reported to have sold the devices for as much as €31,000...

Belgian teacher missing in Syria

Belgian teacher Pierre Piccinin da Prata, who has been in Syria since the beginning of the month, has not been heard from for two weeks, reports Le Soir. The historian and political scientist was on his seventh trip to Syria since the start of the popular uprising in early 2011. The teacher from...

Electro festival gets Michelin-starred catering

Two of Belgium’s most celebrated chefs are to provide the menu in the VIP enclosure of the forthcoming Extrema Outdoor Belgium festival in Houthalen, Limburg province. Sergio Herman of the three-star Oud Sluis and Ken Verschueren of De Tuinkamer (just the one star) will serve high-end dining to...

Running for Retrak: Week 11

So, the first big test is under my belt and out of the way: on Sunday, along with more than 20,000 others, I ran the Antwerp 10 Miles (that’s 16km, metric fans). By some way the furthest I’ve ever run, and I have the aching joints to prove it. It’s also the first event of that size I’ve taken part...

Brussels chief inspector jailed for racist offences

A Brussels police officer was yesterday sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment, with four years suspended, and to pay court costs, for racially motivated violence and using racist language. In 2009, Nordine Saidi (pictured) , who was arrested after taking part in a demonstration calling for the...

New amnesty terms offered to Antwerp diamond traders

Five hundred Antwerp diamond traders whose secret Swiss HSBC bank accounts were discovered have received a final proposal to regularise the situation, reports De Tijd. If they accept the proposal, it may represent a windfall of more than €300 million for the Treasury. Thierry Afschrift, counsel for...

Nationwide motorway safety checks catch 5% offending

A total of 4,477 motorists were caught traveling at excessive speeds during a nationwide police operation on Sunday in which the speed of 85,610 vehicles was checked. The worst offender was a motorcyclist caught travelling at 214kph on the A17. In total, 420 vehicles were stopped and 19 licences...

BSB alumni awarded Cambridge Blues

Two alumni of the British School of Brussels (BSB) studying at Cambridge University have been awarded Blues, the prestigious university sporting award for competing at the highest level. Paul Mallaband, 22, studying engineering at Emmanuel College, featured for the rugby team against Oxford...

UK border agents seize Belgium-bound cocaine

A Belgium-bound cocaine shipment with an estimated street value of €20 million has been seized by UK Border Force officers at the Port of Tilbury in Essex, the Home Office reports. The drugs, which had been shipped from Senegal, had been hidden in two canvas-topped containers carrying a legitimate...

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