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December 28

December 28
The first confirmed involvement of Mafia drugs smuggling in the UK
1993: Mafia link in cocaine haul

England have

British customs officials have seized 70mof Columbian cocaine which is thought to be directly linked to the Mafia.

The discovery of more than a quarter of a tonne of cocaine came after British Customs and Excise officials were tipped off by Italian anti-Mafia investigators.

The international operation also involved the help of Colombian police.

More than a tonne of cocaine was seized, 263 kg of it wasimpoundedin Britain and the rest in Sicily where two Italians were arrested.

In Britain two men, from north London and Chelmsford, Essex, were remanded in custody at Ipswich magistrates court charged with smuggling.

A third man was released on police bail.

"This is the first confirmed involvement of the Mafia in drugs smuggling into the UK. The job was the province of the police in Rome and we acted after we received instructions from them," a Customs and Excise spokesman said.

The Colombian merchant vessel, Maipo, travelled directly to Britain and docked at Felixstowe where customs officers had been preparing for their arrival since last week.

Customs officials were in waiting as a container adapted to hide drugs was unloaded on the dock.

The three men were kept under surveillance for two days when they were arrested as they returned to Felixstowe to pick up the drug.

The haul is believed to have originated from one of the world's largest drug cartels - the Medellin in Colombia.

Investigators claim it is unusual for parties from a third country to be involved in smuggling from South America.

They suggest it indicates the Mafia is increasing its grip on the world's drug trade by filling the gap created by the death of the Colombian drugs baron, Pablo Escobar, the head of the Medellin cartel.

He was ambushed and shot by Colombian police earlier this month.     

December 28
Tv-am will launch in 1983

1980: Green light for breakfast television

Artificially 1969:
The A shake-up of broadcasting franchises has paved the way for the launch of breakfast television.

The Independent Broadcasting Authority announced the breakfast contract will go to TV-AM and will launch in 1983, a year later than planned, to lessen the impact on independent local radio.

It will also avoid clashes with a fourth channel launching in 1982 and the impact on company revenues.

In regional franchises TSW, Television South West, will take over from Westward, which was praised by the IBA for its control of management problems but was faced with fierce competition.

TVS, South and South East Communications, will take over from Southern which faced three times as much competition as any other company and was praised for its religious and children's schedules.

The IBA said it ultimately chose companies with programme makers of particular promise.

In separate statements both companies, which have a long established history, said they were "shattered" by the decision.

The IBA's announcement today also shocked many with its decision to award breakfast news to the new company TV-AM and not ITN.

The TV-AM consortium is headed by Peter Jay, former UK ambassador to Washington, and the journalist David Frost.

Esther Rantzen, Anna Ford and Angela Rippon have been involved in the bid for a year and will join as programme makers from its inception.

They will be joined by Michael Parkinson, Robert Kee and Mr Frost as the presenters of the morning programme starting at 0615 GMT until 0915.

Mr Frost said the show would provide a "fast moving magazine programme" for all the family.

IBA also announced changes within the remainder of the 15 companies which fought against bids from 29 rival companies.

Yorkshire TV and Tyne Tees cannot be controlled by Trident, their holding company but must be run separately with firm proposals by February.

In the East and West Midlands, the new split area, ATV must restructure the company and reduce the shareholding of its parent body to 51% by February.


impound: firm and dependable especially in loyalty(扣押;没收)

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