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MADRID (AP) — Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and the leader of the economically powerful Catalonia region held a crucial face-to-face meeting Wednesday in what could be a last chance to resolve a bitter dispute over the region's plans to hold a secession referendum in November.
Two more senior journalists from Rupert Murdoch's defunct British tabloid the News of the World have been charged with phone-hacking, prosecutors said on Wednesday, weeks after the paper's ex-editor was jailed for the crime. Neil Wallis, the paper's ex-deputy editor, and former features editor Jules Stenson, have been charged with conspiracy to intercept voicemails on mobile phones of well-known figures or people close to them, the Crown Prosecution Service said. The charges come after Andy Coulson, who edited the paper from 2003 until 2007 before later working as Prime Minister David Cameron's media chief, was jailed for 18 months for encouraging staff to hack phones in a bid to get exclusive stories.
By Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) - Bankers who break rules on their conduct may have to hand back bonuses up to seven years after being awarded them, the Bank of England said on Wednesday as it unveiled some of the world's toughest curbs on the sector. The measures are the latest response to multi-billion pound taxpayer bailouts of lenders such as Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds in the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009, with few individual bankers subsequently punished for reckless behaviour. Hefty bonuses still being paid to bankers at a time of belt-tightening for most people have also prompted public anger over the issue and lawmakers have responded with calls for curbs on the sector. The Bank of England had proposed in a consultation paper in March there could be clawback of bonuses up to six years from the date they were fully paid out but has now extended that timescale.