The U.K. Attorney General has declined to appeal disgraced entertainer Rolf Harris' five-year sentence for child sex offences after receiving a slew of complaints suggesting the punishment is not enough. The Australian singer/artist, 84, was ordered to serve five years and nine months behind bars in June (14), after he was convicted of 12 indecent assault charges regarding the molestation of four young girls between 1968 and 1986, when they were aged from seven to 19.
The punishment, handed down by judge Justice Sweeney, was considered by many to be too lenient and prompted 150 people to file official complaints about the sentence with U.K. authorities.
However, Attorney General Jeremy Wright has decided against challenging the sentence in the Court of Appeals.
A representative for the Attorney General's Office reveals, "He (Wright) did not think they (appeal judges) would find it to be unduly lenient and increase it...
"The sentencing judge was bound by the maximum sentence in force at the time of the offending.
"The judge made some of the sentences consecutive to reach the total sentence, but he could not simply add up sentences on individual counts; the overall sentence had to be just and proportionate to the overall offending."
Harris, who denied the counts, was stripped of his British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) fellowship and his Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame honour following his conviction.
Music icon Aretha Franklin stormed out of a fast food restaurant in Ontario, Canada last week (22Jul14) after a nasty encounter with a rude employee. The Queen of Soul stopped by the Johnny Rockets eatery in Niagara Falls after performing a sold-out gig in nearby Lewiston, New York and took a seat at an empty booth as she waited for her hamburger and Cherry Coke take out order to be prepared.
However, she was soon confronted by a young waitress who demanded Franklin move from the booth as tables were reserved for eat-in customers only, even though it wasn't busy.
The singer, who was with her nephew at the time, decided she would have her burger at the restaurant instead, but the server insisted that was not allowed as she had already placed her order for takeaway.
The woman then ordered Franklin to stand outside the Johnny Rockets venue, which was located inside a food court, but the veteran star had had enough.
Franklin tells the New York Daily News, "I got up and walked out. I said, 'You should eat it yourself and you pay for it.'
"My nephew mentioned to her who I was and she said she didn't care who I was."
The Respect hitmaker, 72, reveals she was disgusted by the waitress' behaviour and insists she needs to be "spoken to" about her attitude, saying, "She's a public servant and she shouldn't speak that way to anybody, celebrities or non-celebrities.
However, Franklin claims the encounter won't put her off eating at Johnny Rockets again. She adds, "I like Johnny Rockets and I'll go on liking Johnny Rockets, but not that one."
A spokesperson for the franchise owner has since issued a public apology to Franklin for the actions of "a new and very young employee".
Casey Kasem's wife Jean has been dealt another blow as her attorneys have requested to step down as her legal team. The late veteran broadcaster passed away in June (14) and Jean has been locked in a battle with Casey's adult children even after his passing.
Now Jean's lawyers of Los Angeles-based firm Haney & Young are asking the court to relieve them as her counsel as soon as possible.
According to legal documents filed in Casey's conservatorship obtained by TMZ.com, the lawyers claim Jean does not respond to any of their correspondence, including email and phone.
In addition, the papers state Jean has amounted $500,000 (£294,000) in unpaid fees for her various legal battles, and if she does not settle the balance, the money will allegedly come out of Casey's estate.
Jean's lawyer troubles come amid the escalating family feud over where the late star will be laid to rest. Jean was given control of the star's remains, but Casey has yet to be laid to rest more than a month after his death.
It was reported on Wednesday (23Jul14) that his body was removed from a mortuary in Washington and flown to Montreal, Canada.
A judge in New York City has signed off on a $1.8 million (£1.1 million) record deal for a school-age heavy metal group. The three youngsters from Brooklyn who form Unlocking the Truth, Malcolm Brickhouse, 13, Alec Atkins, 13, and Jarad Dawkins, 12, landed the lucrative deal with Sony Records, but the contract had to be reviewed in court because the bandmembers are minors.
The deal was signed off by a judge in Manhattan on Tuesday (22Jul14), allowing the band to press head with the release of its first single, Monster, this week (beg21Jul14).
The Weinstein Company
Sundance is long gone, Cannes sailed away months ago, and both Tribeca and the Los Angeles Film Festivals have cleared away until next year. But when one major film festival ends, another starts putting its lineup together, and this time, it's Canada's time to shine. The Toronto International Film Festival, which will run from September 4 until the 14, has unveiled the list of titles they'll be premiering this year, and it's packed with under-the-radar indies, highly anticipated returns from accliamed directors, and of course, several likely awards contenders. But with nearly 60 films all making their debut in Toronto this fall, it can be hard to pick out the good from the bad and the exciting from the ones you've probably seen before. In an attempt to simplify the decision-making process for you, we've highlighted some of the most exciting films to hit north of the border this fall.
The Imitation Game Who’s Involved: Benedict Cumberbatch, Kiera Knightley, Matthew Goode and Charles Dance star What It’s About: The British mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing, who helped the Allies win WWII by cracking German codes, and was then prosecuted by the government for being homosexual. Thoughts: Finally, a cast good enough to convince you that math is interesting for two hours.
The Last Five Years Who’s Involved: Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan What It’s About: A musical that tells the story of a married couple’s five-year relationship – his perspective runs from the day they met to when it all fell apart, and hers from the end back to the beginning. Thoughts: The perfect example as to why you should pay attention when your theater nerd friend tries plays you cast recordings.
Foxcatcher Who’s Involved: Bennett Miller directs; Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, and Mark Ruffalo starWhat It’s About: Based on a true story, it follows two championship wrestler brothers and the tragic consequences that they face after getting involved with an eccentric millionaire coach. Thoughts: We really are going to have to come up with the Tatum equivalent of “McConaissance” sometime soon.
A Little ChaosWho’s Involved: Alan Rickman directs; Kate Winslet, Stanley Tucci and Rickman star What It’s About: A landscape gardener finds herself struggling with the politics of Louis XIV’s court and her own demons after she’s hired to work at the Garden of Versailles. Thoughts: You had us at “Rickman.”
The Riot Club Who’s Involved: Lone Scherfig directs; Sam Claflin, Max Irons, Natalie Dormer and Jessica Brown-Findlay star What It’s About: A privileged young man is inducted into the “Riot’s Club,” an exclusive, wild group of young men full of debauchery and bad behavior, during his first year at Oxford. Thoughts: Look! It’s that guy from that thing! And that girl, from that other thing! I like them. They should be in more things.
Before We Go Who’s Involved: Chris Evans directs; Evans and Alice Eve star What It’s About: Two strangers bond over the course of one night in Manhattan, and the conflicts in their lives allow them to explore more about each other and themselves. Thoughts: Captain America is directing movies now!
Warner Bros. Pictures
This Is Where I Leave You Who’s Involved: Shawn Levy directs; Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Adam Driver, Connie Britton and Jane Fonda star What It’s About: Four adult siblings return to their childhood home after their father dies. Dysfunction and hijinks ensue. Thoughts: Does Driver say “outer space” in this? Can we re-write the script so that he does?
Men, Women and Children Who’s Involved: Jason Reitman directs; Jennifer Garner, Adam Sandler and Judy Greer star What It’s About: A group of parents and children navigate the way the Internet has changed their relationships and lives. Thoughts: Well, it’s got be better than Labor Day, right?
Miss Julie Who’s Involved: Liv Ullman directs; Jessica Chastain and Colin Farrell star What It’s About: Set over the course of one night in the 1880s, an aristocratic woman and her father’s valet struggle for power. Thoughts: Should we also be thinking about the “Farrellissance?”
Nightcrawler Who’s Involved: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, and Bill Paxton star What It’s About: An ambitious journalist becomes involved with the world of LA nighttime journalism, and the line between spectator and perpetrator becomes blurred. Thoughts: Oh, so this isn’t an X-Men solo film? That’s slightly disappointing.
Rosewater Who’s Involved: Jon Stewart directs; Gael Garcia Bernal stars What It’s About: The true story of Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, who appeared on The Daily Show before being imprisoned for five months by the Iranian government. Thoughts: This is the movie that gave us Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and for that we shall always be grateful.
The Theory of Everything Who’s Involved: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Emily Watson, and David Thewlis star What It’s About: The life and relationship of world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife Jane Wilde from their first meeting at Cambridge through Hawking’s diagnosis through their numerous accomplishments. Thoughts: Oscar Season 2014: Alan Turing vs. Stephen Hawking in The Battle of the British Genius Biopics.
Whiplash Who’s Involved: Damien Chazelle directs; Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons star What It’s About: An ambitious jazz drummer who enrolls at a prestigious music conservatory, but must endure the brutal, intense tutelage of a brilliant, drill sergeant-like teacher in order to achieve greatness. Thoughts: Look, we’ll stop talking about this one once it finally comes out, and not a moment sooner, okay?
John Mellencamp's 20-year-old son is facing a charge of underage drinking following an incident in Indiana earlier this month (Jul14). Hud Mellencamp was allegedly caught consuming alcohol by Monroe County police on 10 July (14). He has been summoned to appear in Monroe Circuit Court for a hearing on 25 September (14).
It's the latest legal woe for young Mellencamp - he and his 19-year-old brother Speck are heading to trial over accusations they beat up a man last summer (13).
The boys, who are free on bail, are due to attend a pre-trial conference over the felony battery charge in Monroe County on Thursday (24Jul14).
Actor Rob Brown's racial discrimination lawsuit against bosses of U.S. retail giant Macy's has reportedly ended after the two parties reached an undisclosed settlement. The Treme star filed a class-action complaint against the department store chain last year (13) after alleging he had been handcuffed and questioned by undercover police at the company's New York venue.
Staff had suspected him of using a stolen credit card to buy a $1,350 (£900) watch for his mother, and Brown alleged he was "paraded" through the store like a criminal before being released without charge 45 minutes later.
Now editors at TMZ.com report the actor has settled his case with Macy's bosses.
Court documents reportedly confirm he has reached a settlement "in principle" and the case has been dismissed.
The controversy came in the wake of a similar incident involving a young black man at New York retailer Barneys, which prompted calls for rap mogul Jay Z to pull his holiday collection from the store's shelves, but the 99 Problems hitmaker decided to stick with the venture.
Former child star Tami Erin is facing fresh legal troubles after her ex-boyfriend applied for a restraining order against her. The actress, who played the title role in 1988 movie The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking, is accused of repeatedly calling her former partner David Young at his office and leaving nasty messages, according to TMZ.com.
The website's editors report Young, who split from Erin almost two years ago, has gone to court to apply for a restraining order against Erin.
The news is a fresh blow to Erin, who has faced a number of legal troubles in recent months after she was arrested on suspicion of drink-driving late last year (13).
A mansion Adele once shared with her partner has gone on the market. The Grammy Award-winning singer moved into the huge 10-bedroom property in West Sussex, England in 2012 and was reportedly paying around $25,500 (£15,000) a month to rent it.
Adele shared the house with her boyfriend Simon Konecki and their young son Angelo before moving out last year (13), and now the public has been given a glimpse of the notoriously private star's former home after it went up for sale for $10.2 million (£6 million).
The sprawling estate features a three-bedroom staff apartment and a guest cottage, as well as a leisure complex with two swimming pools and a tennis court.
Disgraced entertainer Rolf Harris has been jailed for almost six years for indecently assaulting girls as young as seven. The Australian singer/artist was last month (Jun14) convicted of molesting four young girls between 1968 and 1986, when they were aged between seven and 19.
He was found guilty of 12 indecent assault charges, and a judge at London's Southwark Crown Court sentenced Harris to five years and nine months on Friday (04Jul14).
Harris, who was stripped of his British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) fellowship and his Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame honour following his conviction, will also have to pay court costs and faces compensation claims from his victims.
The judge, Mr. Justice Sweeney, told the star, "You have showed no remorse for your crimes at all. Your reputation now lies in ruins. You have been stripped of your honours but you have no one to blame but yourself."
Harris had denied the charges, telling a court the women had made up the attacks. He admitted having sexual relations with a friend of his daughter but denied she was just 13 years old when it began.
On Friday, the court also heard Harris had been charged with four counts of making indecent images after child pornography was found on a computer following a search of his home. Prosecutors decided not to pursue those charges in the light of the indecent assault convictions.