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Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

That's all for today - thank you for joining us.

We'll be back on tomorrow at 08:00 with the latest news, sport, weather and travel updates. 

If you'd like to get in touch, you can contact us on TwitterFacebook, or via email at

Weather: Thunder expected tomorrow

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

Bad news - it might not be as sunny as we thought tomorrow.

Even though temperatures are expected to reach 28 degrees, thunderstorms could be happening here in the North East.

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning of rain and has stated that frequent lightning, large hail and strong winds could be potential hazards.

All I wanted was to sunbathe, but I guess I should prepare to swap my parasol for an umbrella, once again.

Child grabbed and offered drugs in Newcastle

A 12-year-old boy was assaulted near to Byker Metro station in Newcastle when he was stopped and grabbed by a man.

The incident took place between 18:30 and 19:30 on Tuesday in Conyers Road.

The man asked the boy if he wanted to buy any drugs before letting go of him and walking off.

Byker Metro station

The boy was left feeling extremely shaken and upset.

The man is white, in his early 20s and had blonde hair. 

He is 5ft 6in, skinny and spoke with a London accent.

New mini steam train comes to Teesside

Back to some other news in the North East now - Saltburn Miniature Railway Association is welcoming a new addition.

After three hard years of regeneration work on the project they can finally show off the steam locomotive Blacklock, R - affectionately named after the association's former chairman Reg, who passed away in 2012.

It now means the attraction in Saltburn's Valley Gardens has four engines for visitors to come and see and have a ride.

Our Reporter Louise Hobson went to see the new train:

View more on twitter

Toddler kidnapping: How the events unfolded

The two teenage girls kidnapped a toddler from Primark on Northumberland Street, Newcastle, at 16:30 on 13 April.

Primark store

The girls took the child on the Metro to Gosforth and headed towards a Sainsbury's store in Gosforth at 17:00.

While there, they stole milk and a bottle to distract the child.

They also tried to take her to a soft play area, but it was shut.

Sainsbury's store

At 18:00 the two girls and the toddler were found in Gosforth Park, near the Sainsburys store.

The 13 and 14-year-old were arrested by police.

Gosforth Park

How the media reported the abduction case

Here's how other media in the North East of England are reporting the Primark abduction case.

Teenagers' motives for toddler abduction remain unclear

Questions still remain as to why two teenage girls lured a toddler away from their mother in Newcastle.

The judge hearing the case believes they meant to "harm" the little girl, but were unable to do so as they were found by police.

The father of the toddler said after an earlier hearing: "The question remains: what was their intention?"

He added that the child's mother will "never forget the guilt" of losing her.

Girls 'had been charged with attempted sex offence'

The two girls were initially charged with kidnap "with the intention of committing a relevant sexual offence" contrary to the Sexual Offences Act of 2003.

The sentencing hearing referred to offensive internet searches made on a tablet belonging to the younger defendant. 

Mr Justice Globe told the court today: "The internet history shows hundreds of searches in relation to pornographic topics which include children having sex, rape, slavery and abduction."

But the sexual offence charge was dropped at an earlier hearing after the prosecution accepted a plea to the alternative charge of kidnap.

Order banning identification of girls 'will not be lifted'

The Section 45 anonymity order banning anyone from identifying the teenage kidnappers will not be lifted in this case, Mr Justice Globe said.

He told the court: "Anonymity is never an easy matter to resolve where there is an offence committed of public importance... Open justice is uppermost in my mind." 

Taking into account the age of the two defendants though, he has decided the order must remain in place. 

Girls have sentence reduced due to time under curfew

The two girls who kidnapped a toddler will be locked up for three years and three months, the judge has confirmed.

Mr Justice Globe removed a month from their sentence due to the amount of time the pair have spent under curfew.

The two girls have now been led out of the dock.

BreakingTeenage kidnappers to remain anonymous

The judge hearing the case today has confirmed that he will not reveal the girls' identity.

Mr Justice Globe said he would not lift the court order banning publication of their names and addresses.

No separate penalty for thefts to lure toddler away

The two girls will face no further punishment for theft after they admitted stealing a number of items to distract the toddler they kidnapped.

They admitted stealing a dummy, baby milk and a bottle.

Teenage girls 'given reduced sentence for guilty plea'

Mr Justice Globe said guidelines recommended a five-year sentence for the two teenage girls who kidnapped a toddler from Primark.

But he deducted one third for their guilty plea. 

Although the child came to "no actual harm", there was intent, planning and enticement, he said. 

BreakingTeenage girls locked up for kidnapping toddler

Two teenagers have both been sentenced to three years and four months detention for kidnapping a toddler in Newcastle.

Mother has suffered 'extensive psychological harm' after kidnapping

The mother of a toddler kidnapped in Newcastle has suffered "extensive psychological harm", a judge has said.

Mr Justice Globe said the impact on her had been "devastating" and added that she won't let her daughter out of her sight and or go to nursery.

He said he bears in mind that no physical harm was caused to the child, but said he is also sure that some aspect of physical or sexual harm or exploitation similar to searches found on a tablet would have been carried out.

He said: "It was the true reason as to why she was taken... (the mother's) fears are well founded."

Kidnappers 'lied to police about why they took child'

Simon Armstrong

BBC News

The Primark kidnappers "told lies" to the police and the youth offending team about why they lured the child away, Mr Justice Globe said.

The judge added that, even today, one or both of the girls are still "not telling the truth".

He said he rejects the proposition that they took the toddler "for no reason", adding he does not think it could be understandable.

Both teenagers have claimed at different times that they were told by a man to "get a child" in the run up to the kidnap, but the judge said he does not believe that. 

Girls 'are yet to explain reasons behind kidnapping'

The reasons behind the kidnapping of a toddler in Newcastle remain unknown, the judge has confirmed.

Mr Justice Globe said the two girls put forward different accounts of the incident, but neither has explained to his satisfaction what actually happened.

He said their accounts "produce more questions than answers". 

Judge hearing kidnapping case also dealt with Angela Wrightson trial

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

As we mentioned earlier, the judge sitting on the Primark kidnapping case has a history of dealing with high-profile trials in the North East.

Earlier this year, Mr Justice Globe sentenced two teenage girls for the murder of Angela Wrightson in Hartlepool.

The pair, who cannot be named, were sentenced to life with a minimum of 15 years.

Jurors heard how the girls battered and tortured Ms Wrightson to death in an attack lasting many hours in December 2014.

The judge prevented the girls' identity from being revealed to the public.

He also initially ordered the media to remove every comment about the trial from any news article and social media post.

Angela Wrightson

Judge has looked 'very carefully' at kidnap CCTV

Simon Armstrong

BBC News

Mr Justice Globe is starting his summing up in sentencing two girls for kidnapping a toddler in Newcastle.

He says the girls have previously pleaded guilty to kidnapping a two-year-old girl and two shoplifting offences. 

He has outlined how they played truant and caught the Metro to Newcastle City Centre. He says he has "looked very carefully" at CCTV images.

More to follow.

What we've heard at the sentencing hearing

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

Video: How the events unfolded

This video quickly explains the events that took place on 13 April:

This content only works in the UK.

Teenagers guilty of Primark toddler kidnap

Defence asks for 'rehabilitation' instead of custodial sentence

The teenagers who kidnapped a toddler "hadn't thought through their actions and the consequences" and "showed (the girl) nothing but kindness", a defence barrister says.

Julia Clemitson, in mitigation for the younger kidnapper, added that they did not intend to harm the toddler.

Ms Clemitson also called for Mr Justice Globe to consider a non-custodial sentence, instead preferring one of rehabilitation.

She has now completed her mitigation and sentencing is expected to begin in 15 minutes.

Mother of kidnapped toddler was 'utterly distraught'

The mother of a toddler who was snatched from a Primark by two teenage girls banged her head on a wall in distress when she realised what had happened, a court has heard. 

The 13 and 14-year-old had been playing with the little girl for 15 minutes in a display which the mother believed was "sweet" before they enticed her away with treats, Newcastle Crown Court heard. 

The kidnappers had skipped school and spent hours in the Primark in Northumberland Street, Newcastle, waiting for a child to abduct on April 13. 

They had already approached two others, and almost tricked the mother of one of them when they tried to lead her daughter away. 

They had engaged that child's mother by saying the little one was "beautiful" and asking whether she could speak. 

Sarah Barlow, prosecuting, told the court they later grabbed another girl, and walked out of the store, leaving her mother devastated. 

Miss Barlow said: "She was described by one witness as banging her head against a wall, she was so utterly distraught."

Thirteen-year-old kidnapper was victim of 'online sexual exploitation'

The 13-year-old kidnapper is "an unsophisticated girl" and has "undoubtedly been the victim of online sexual exploitation", her barrister says.

In mitigation, Julia Clemitson said the girl receives extra support at school due to "average milestones" and described her as "damaged".

The court was told the girl had been speaking to an adult online in the months before the toddler's kidnapping took place.

However, Ms Clemitson said the kidnap was "not a result of a direct instruction from a third party... what they did that day was if their own volition".  

Kidnap case judge helped prosecute James Bulger's killers

The judge sentencing two girls for kidnapping a toddler in Newcastle was a junior prosecution counsel in the trial of James Bulger's killers.

In February 1993, two-year-old James was abducted and murdered by two 10-year-old boys, Robert Thompson and Jon Venables.

James went missing while out shopping with his mother in Bootle’s Strand Shopping Centre in Merseyside on 12 February 1993. 

This below is CCTV from the time:

James Bulger kidnapping

Today the sentencing hearing of the two girls for the Primark kidnapping in Newcastle was shown CCTV of the brightly lit shop and the girls approaching shoppers. 

The Crown Prosecution Service has said this CCTV will not be released to the media. 

Prosecutor Sarah Barlow said the film demonstrated the two kidnappers were "working together, quite co-ordinated" and showed "a degree of planning or at least communication between the two".

Kidnapping not an 'unsophisticated event'

The motives behind the kidnapping are still unclear.

Sarah Barlow told Newcastle Crown Court that "considerable efforts" have been made to uncover the reason.

She said: "It was not an unsophisticated offence given the length of time spent in Primark and the determination they showed... They continued to persist in that behaviour until they took a child."

The prosecutor explained that the two girls had visited Boots to take items which would "keep a child distracted".

There is no evidence of third-party involvement, according to Ms Barlow.

Both girls have denied they intended to hurt the child. 

Fourteen-year-old kidnapper 'is not wicked'

Defence barrister Andrew Walker questioned why the teenagers would take the toddler to a soft play area and then a park if they intended to hurt her.

He said neither girl may be able to "articulate or adequately explain" their actions, but "they do not appear to have harmed or mistreated" the toddler.

Reports for the judge at Newcastle Crown Court described the 14-year-old as "young for her age" with a "lack of social understanding".

Mr Walker said she is “not wicked", and argued that children “do not always understand “the magnitude of their actions".

Girls 'stole objects to lure toddler and played with her in front of mother'

The girls who kidnapped a toddler in Newcastle have admitted stealing a dummy, baby milk and a bottle. 

While in Primark they went to the children's section, where at 16:00 they began talking to their victim. 

Prosecutor Sarah Barlow said: "They offered her sweets. That's indicative of the level of planning, they had taken with them things likely to attract a child to them."

The toddler was running to and from the girls. 

The prosecutor added: "Her mother was not suspicious, she simply thought the girls were playing with her daughter and were being quite sweet. This went on for some 15 minutes." 

Kidnapped toddler 'would have come to physical or sexual harm'

The defence and prosecution have clashed over why the two teenage girls abducted the toddler.

Prosecutor Sarah Barlow said it is the Crown's belief that "the evidence suggests (the child) would have come to harm and that is likely to have been physical or sexual, or both".

But Andrew walker, defence barrister for the older girl, said her maturity is much younger than 14.

He said her life has been "turned upside down" in recent months by the court case.

"Quite why two children might take another child from her mother may never be fully understood," Mr Walker said.

He added there is "no evidence she did so for any sinister purpose".

Schoolgirl kidnapper searched for 'rape', 'abduction' and 'slavery' on tablet

Details of pornography and sexual violence were found on a tablet belonging to one of the girls, the court was told.

Of approximately 1,180 searches, about 400 were "pornographic in nature... with an increasing level of violence", prosecutors said.

Search terms included the topics of rape, abduction and slavery.

Prosecutor Sarah Barlow said it went beyond "normal sexual curiosity" for a child of early teenage years.

Toddler kidnapped in Primark 'barely remembers events'

A toddler who was kidnapped by two teenage girls was unharmed and remembers little of the day in question, the court has heard.

Her mother, however, continues to have nightmares and questions about what could have happened to her daughter, the hearing was told.

The girls said they found the toddler "lost" in the store, that she had followed them and they were taking her to be looked after. 

Kidnappers 'told police toddler had followed them'

Simon Armstrong

BBC News

We're under way again at Newcastle Crown Court as two teenagers await sentencing after kidnapping a toddler from the city centre Primark store in April.

If you were with us earlier, you'll know that after some legal arguments this morning, the prosecution began outlining its version of events before an adjournment for lunch.

The court has reconvened and prosecutor Sarah Barlow is picking up the evidence at Gosforth park.

A policeman saw the girls, who told him the toddler had followed them from the city centre. It was then they were arrested. 

David Wilson death: Daniel Johnson charged with Sunderland murder

A man has been charged with murder more than 18 months after the body of another man was found at a flat in Sunderland.

David Wilson, 49, was found dead at an address in the city's Southwick Road just after 11:00 on 14 December.

At the time, police said Mr Wilson had been the victim of a "violent attack".

Daniel Johnson, 20, formerly of Morris Street, Gateshead, has been charged with murder and is due in court tomorrow, Northumbria Police said.

David Wilson was found dead in December 2014
Northumbria Police

Former player backs Allardyce for England job

BBC Radio 5 Live

Former footballer Jack Collison, who played under Sam Allardyce at West Ham, believes that the Sunderland manager should be given the England job.

Welshman Collinson played 121 times for the Hammers and also worked under Eddie Howe at Bournemouth during a short loan spell.

Sunderland confirmed that Allardyce was in talks with the Football Association regarding the England manager's job after the resignation of Roy Hodgson.

This clip is originally from Sportsweek on 17 July.

Schoolgirl kidnapper told toddler: 'Don't worry, I'll get you to your mummy'

Fiona Trott

BBC News

The judge sentencing two girls who kidnapped a toddler from a Primark store in Newcastle has been shown CCTV pictures of the teenagers leading her away. 

The 14 and 13-year-olds, who cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to the offence at an earlier hearing.

As the CCTV footage was played to the court, the teenagers looked at the floor. The pictures showed them taking the two-year-old into a lift. 

She appeared calm. One of the girls then lead her away from the store by hand and out on to the street. 

The court heard the toddler was enticed away using sweets and a soft drink and one of the teenagers said to her "Don't worry, I'll get you to your mummy". 

The child was found safe and well by the police less than two hours after she disappeared. The sentencing continues.

Jack Charlton cheers young Newcastle fan up

A Newcastle dad posted a photo on Facebook last weekend after his son Blake had a tantrum while wearing a Newcastle United shirt in Tesco. 

What cheered the little boy up, you may ask?

Well, meeting a football legend helped quite a lot... 

1966 World Cup winner and former Newcastle boss Jack Charlton happened to be around and spotted the crying boy.

He popped up in a waxed jacket and calmed him right down.

Blake's dad described Mr Charlton as "a man of many talents".

View more on twitter

Primark kidnapping: Girls 'coerced' toddler on to Metro

Simon Armstrong

BBC News

The girls are sitting quietly at the back of the court room as Sarah Barlow continues to outline the prosecution case.

But because of their young age, they are sat with intermediaries.

They gave the toddler sweets and coke as they "coerced" her on the Metro, Ms Barlow said.

At about 17:00, having left the Metro, they tried to take the child to a soft play area within South Gosforth shopping centre, but it was closed to the public.

By this time, police were aware of the child's disappearance.

Proceedings have now been adjourned to 14:15.

Teenagers were 'deliberate' in kidnapping toddler

CCTV footage played in court shows how two schoolgirl kidnappers left the Primark store in Newcastle, holding the toddler by the hand.

The child's mother then realised she was missing and reported it to staff.

Prosecutor Sarah Barlow says the teenagers were "deliberate" in taking the child and "anxious" for the lift to arrive at the second floor, where they were waiting.

She explained how "the demeanour of the girls is very telling".

Newcastle Crown Court has heard how they took the toddler straight to Haymarket Metro Station, and then on to Gosforth.  

Primark kidnappers acted in a 'coordinated way'

Two girls who kidnapped a toddler in Newcastle were acting in a "coordinated way" and a "degree of planning" had taken place before the events, according to prosecutor Sarah Barlow.

At about 15:30 on 13 April they tried to attract the toddler they were to eventually snatch with sweets.

They took the girl from the store via a lift and "appeared hurried", Ms Barlow said.

The sentencing hearing continues.

Two girls 'raised suspicions with black toddler'

Simon Armstrong

BBC News

The two girls who kidnapped a toddler from Primark in Newcastle raised suspicions as they left the store, a court has heard.

 A witness became suspicious when they saw the two white girls with the small, black toddler, the sentencing hearing at Newcastle Crown Court was told.

More CCTV evidence of the kidnapping back in April is currently being played to the court.