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England cricket star witnesses man fall under a tube train

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 A commuter has fallen under a Victoria line train from a packed platform in front of horrified eyewitnesses. 

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent was on the platform of Oxford Circus when the man tumbled in front of the train. 

Ms Rainford-Brent said: ‘I cannot believe what I have just witnessed. Absolutely horric scenes at Oxford Circus and I just watched a man fall under the tube 2m in front of me.

Oxford Circus station was evacuated this evening after a man fell in front of a train

Oxford Circus station was evacuated this evening after a man fell in front of a train

Oxford Circus station was evacuated this evening after a man fell in front of a train 

Thousands of passengers were forced to evacuate the station following the incident

Thousands of passengers were forced to evacuate the station following the incident

Thousands of passengers were forced to evacuate the station following the incident 

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent was just two metres from the man when he fell in front of the Victoria Line tube train. She said people were pushing and shoving shortly before the incident. She said the platform was 'rammed' at the time

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent was just two metres from the man when he fell in front of the Victoria Line tube train. She said people were pushing and shoving shortly before the incident. She said the platform was 'rammed' at the time

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent was just two metres from the man when he fell in front of the Victoria Line tube train. She said people were pushing and shoving shortly before the incident. She said the platform was ‘rammed’ at the time

‘This is unacceptable that in one of the most sophisticated cities in the world stations are allowed to get this rammed.’  

She continued: ‘People pushing & shoving each other & putting life at risk just trying to get home from work.

‘Something needs to be done urgently to create safety. Sending prayers out to the family and friends of the young man, some horrible conversations to be had. Still shaking. So sad.’

Oxford Circus station was evacuated following the incident.  

More to follow.  

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent witnessed today's shocking incident

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent witnessed today's shocking incident

Former England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent witnessed today’s shocking incident 

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How Google, George Soros and eBay’s founder fund Full Fact group

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Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has laid into an ‘independent’ fact checking service run by a former board member of Hacked Off after a row over the Conservative HQ Twitter account rebranding itself ‘FactCheckUK’ for the election debate.

FullFact is at the centre of an election row with the Tories over the Twitter rebrand, which critics say was ‘misleading’ and prompted the social media network to threaten to ban the Conservatives.

Its co-founder and chief executive Will Moy, who was once a board member for anti-press body Hacked Off, claimed Twitter ‘could have acted sooner’ after the Conservative Party renamed their account FactCheckUK.

But Mr Raab hit back today by saying: ‘Who said Final Fact is the final arbiter of what the public get to see as the truth? There’s no god-given right, set in law. It doesn’t sound to me like they like the competition’.

Mr Raab insisted the party did not need to apologise for countering the ‘lies’ that were ‘serially and systematically’ put out by Labour and its allies.

Talking about the row over whether the Conservatives calling themselves FactCheckUK was misleading, Mr Raab said ‘no-one gives a toss’ in the wider public about the ‘cut and thrust’ of social media because they just wanted to know about the ‘substance of the issues’.

‘We are not going to be a punchbag for the nonsense put out by the Left that goes unchallenged,’ he said in a round of broadcast interviews.  

Facebook and a number of billionaires have given cash to FullFact which is approaching £1million-a-year in donations. 

Foundations set up by eBay creator Pierre Omidyar and left-wing investor George Soros have also joined tech giants in giving six-figure sums to London-based Full Fact along with thousands of unnamed individual donors paying between £25 and £5,000 each.

Full Fact, which famously dismissed Vote Leave’s 2016 claim £350million a week goes to the EU and claims to ‘fight bad information’, has been forced to defend its own credibility after it stepped into a social media war after last night’s election debate between Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson. 

Foundations set up by eBay creator Pierre Omidyar (pictured) and left-wing billionaire investor George Soros are funding Full Fact

Foundations set up by eBay creator Pierre Omidyar (pictured) and left-wing billionaire investor George Soros are funding Full Fact

Foundations set up by eBay creator Pierre Omidyar and left-wing billionaire investor George Soros (pictured) are funding Full Fact

Foundations set up by eBay creator Pierre Omidyar and left-wing billionaire investor George Soros (pictured) are funding Full Fact

Foundations set up by eBay creator Pierre Omidyar (left) and left-wing billionaire investor George Soros are helping fund Full Fact, which is at the centre of a row with the Tories

Mark Zuckerberg's Facebook paid £132,000 in the first six months of 2019 after criticism about how the social network has handled the spread of misinformation on its platform

Mark Zuckerberg's Facebook paid £132,000 in the first six months of 2019 after criticism about how the social network has handled the spread of misinformation on its platform

Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook paid £132,000 in the first six months of 2019 after criticism about how the social network has handled the spread of misinformation on its platform

Full Fact has a team of 19 staff and also uses software to check veracity of claims flagged by the public

Full Fact has a team of 19 staff and also uses software to check veracity of claims flagged by the public

Full Fact has a team of 19 staff and also uses software to check veracity of claims flagged by the public

Full Fact was founded in 2010 by Mr Moy and former Conservative Party donor Michael Samuel, a millionaire businessman and friend of Princess Diana who reportedly remained close to Prince William after her death. 

Its co-founder and chief executive Will Moy, was once a board member for anti-press body Hacked Off and helped start the charity in 2010

Its co-founder and chief executive Will Moy, was once a board member for anti-press body Hacked Off and helped start the charity in 2010

Its co-founder and chief executive Will Moy, was once a board member for anti-press body Hacked Off and helped start the charity in 2010

Moy, a former House of Lords researcher, suggested the idea for an independent fact-checking organisation having become disillusioned about inaccurate briefings from political staff and lobbyists within Westminster. 

Samuel had been concerned about accuracy in public debate for a number of years and is understood to have helped fund Full Fact’s launch.

The charity publishes its funding online and last year received £664,000 – and Google was the top donor, giving them £230,000 in total – more than a third of all their funding.

The second largest donor is the Omidyar Network, set up by Pierre Omidyar, the American billionaire founder of eBay, who paid £115,000 towards developing Full Fact’s ‘automatic’ checking software.  

Individual donors gave £74,796 and the Open Society Foundations, founded by billionaire George Soros, handed over £71,917. Former hedge fund William De Winton gave £10,000.

In 2019 Full Fact started working with Facebook after criticism about how the social network has handled the spread of misinformation on its platform.

Full Fact is based in this grand building in Carlton Gardens, next door to the Foreign Secretary's grace-and-favour London home close to Buckingham Palace

Full Fact is based in this grand building in Carlton Gardens, next door to the Foreign Secretary's grace-and-favour London home close to Buckingham Palace

Full Fact is based in this grand building in Carlton Gardens, next door to the Foreign Secretary’s grace-and-favour London home close to Buckingham Palace

Mark Zuckerberg’s business handed over £132,000 [$171,800] in the first six months of this year, and is expected to take Full Fact’s income towards £1million this year.

Google’s Digital News Initiative grant fund £210,445 Third Generation Fact Checking 

Full Fact’s donors in 2018

Google – £230,445 

Omidyar Network – £115,000 

Individual donors – £74,796

Open Society Foundations – £71,917

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation – £40,000

Barrow Cadbury Charitable Trust -£30,000

Colefax Charitable Trust – £25,000

Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust – £20,000

University of Edinburgh – £12,634

Peter Samuel Charitable Trust –£10,000

William De Winton – £10,000

Other –  £25,069

Total – £664,861

 

Full Fact started with Mr Moy but now has 19 staff, including journalists who previously worked for the BBC, Guardian, BuzzFeed, and a number of academics, based in a grand office overlooking St James’ Park and close to Buckingham Palace.

The team review items flagged by users and rate them based on their accuracy – and insist they have safeguards ‘at every level’ to ensure they stay neutral.

Anyone who works there is allowed to be a ‘non-active member of a political party’ – but is banned from saying publicly how they vote or express support for any political party.

In 2013 Full Fact started work on Automated Factchecking and in 2016 started working with Google to rate the veracity of facts stories, images and videos using their own software.  They are also researching how machine learning and AI can improve the work they do.

They were also a major player during the 2014 Scottish Independence campaign, the 2016 EU referendum campaign and the 2017 general election campaign. 

Defending their impartiality Mr Moy told MailOnline: ‘We’re an independent and impartial charity with a cross-party board. We publish details of all our funders who donate more than £5,000 a year. No donor has any say over how Full Fact is run, what we fact check or publish.

‘We don’t ask people to take our word for any conclusion we make. We provide links to all sources so that readers can check what we’ve said for themselves.’

‘Every party and candidate campaigning in this election is asking people for their trust. Ultimately voters will decide’.

Dominic Raab dismisses backlash over Tory ‘factcheckUK’ Twitter handle after social media firm threatens ban over party’s election debate stunt – despite Labour running its OWN ‘fact checking’ feed

Ministers today flatly dismissed a furious backlash over Tory HQ changing its Twitter name to ‘factcheckUK’ during the TV election debate.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab insisted the party did not need to apologise for countering the ‘lies’ that were ‘serially and systematically’ put out by Labour and its allies.

He said ‘no one gives a toss’ in the wider public about the ‘cut and thrust’ because they just wanted to know about the ‘substance of the issues’.  

‘We are not going to be a punchbag for the nonsense put out by the Left that goes unchallenged,’ he said in a round of broadcast interviews.  

The Conservative Party press office changed their Twitter handle to FactCheckUK ahead of tonight's debate between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn

The Conservative Party press office changed their Twitter handle to FactCheckUK ahead of tonight's debate between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn

The Conservative Party press office changed their Twitter handle to FactCheckUK ahead of tonight’s debate between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn 

The move was described as 'inappropriate and misleading' by fact-checking organisation Full Fact

The move was described as 'inappropriate and misleading' by fact-checking organisation Full Fact

The move was described as ‘inappropriate and misleading’ by fact-checking organisation Full Fact 

Unsurprisingly, the FactCheckUK verdict was Boris Johnson was the 'clear winner'

Unsurprisingly, the FactCheckUK verdict was Boris Johnson was the 'clear winner'

Unsurprisingly, the FactCheckUK verdict was Boris Johnson was the ‘clear winner’ 

Meanwhile, it has emerged that Labour also runs a branded Twitter feed, ‘The Insider’, which promises to provide ‘facts you can trust’.  

The combative response from the Conservatives came despite the social media platform warning that its official press office account would face ‘decisive corrective action’ if there is a repeat of the stunt. 

The party changed the name to factcheckUK during the debate last night. 

Critics claimed the messages praising Boris Johnson could have been coming from an independent fact checking organisation, rather than the Tories – although the party pointed out that its handle had remained ‘@CCHQPress’ throughout.

Labour’s Dawn Butler said Twitter should have deactivated the account. ‘They could have just suspended the account and taken it down,’ she told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. 

‘To me, that would have been the better punishment.’ 

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab insisted the party did not need to apologise for countering the 'lies' that were 'serially and systematically' put out by Labour and its allies on social media

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab insisted the party did not need to apologise for countering the 'lies' that were 'serially and systematically' put out by Labour and its allies on social media

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab insisted the party did not need to apologise for countering the ‘lies’ that were ‘serially and systematically’ put out by Labour and its allies on social media

Iit has emerged that Labour also runs a branded Twitter feed, 'The Insider', which promises to provide 'facts you can trust'

Iit has emerged that Labour also runs a branded Twitter feed, 'The Insider', which promises to provide 'facts you can trust'

Iit has emerged that Labour also runs a branded Twitter feed, ‘The Insider’, which promises to provide ‘facts you can trust’

The microblogging site warned the Conservative Party about their actions which were in breach of the company’s terms and conditions. 

According to the company: ‘Twitter is committed to facilitating healthy debate throughout the UK general election. 

‘We have global rules in place that prohibit behavior that can mislead people, including those with verified accounts. 

‘Any further attempts to mislead people by editing verified profile information – in a manner seen during the UK Election Debate – will result in decisive corrective action.’ 

The Tory Party stunt was widely criticised, including by fact-checking organisation Full Fact. 

In a tweet, the organisation said: ‘It is inappropriate and misleading for the Conservative press office to rename their twitter account ‘factcheckUK’ during this debate.

‘Please do not mistake it for an independent fact checking service such as @FullFact, @FactCheck or @FactCheckNI.’ 

The @CCHQpress account is verified by Twitter, displaying a blue tick which is intended to denote that a user is genuine.

Unsurprisingly, the FactCheckUK account found that Boris Johnson ‘won’ the debate with Mr Corbyn.  

The Liberal Democrat press office posted an image suggesting they were reporting the account to Twitter for ‘pretending to be me or someone else’.

Former Labour Party spin doctor Alastair Campbell changed his name to Boris Johnson following the Tory Party's move and tweeted that he was 'lying' about the NHS

Former Labour Party spin doctor Alastair Campbell changed his name to Boris Johnson following the Tory Party's move and tweeted that he was 'lying' about the NHS

Former Labour Party spin doctor Alastair Campbell changed his name to Boris Johnson following the Tory Party’s move and tweeted that he was ‘lying’ about the NHS 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pictured, was debating tonight with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn on ITV in the first head-to-head meeting of the 2019 General Election

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pictured, was debating tonight with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn on ITV in the first head-to-head meeting of the 2019 General Election

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pictured, was debating tonight with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn on ITV in the first head-to-head meeting of the 2019 General Election 

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured, faced Boris Johnson tonight in the head-to-head debate on ITV

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured, faced Boris Johnson tonight in the head-to-head debate on ITV

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured, faced Boris Johnson tonight in the head-to-head debate on ITV

They tweeted: ‘And people wonder why trust in politics has been eroded @CCHQPress’. 

Labour’s David Lammy tweeted: ‘The Conservative Party press office @CCHQPress rebranding themselves as ‘FactCheckUK’ shows what disdain this party and this government has for the truth.

‘The Electoral Commission must investigate and punish this blatant attempt to decieve the public.’

Conservative Party chairman James Cleverly appeared on BBC Newsnight last night to defend the scam. 

He said: ‘The Twitter handle of the CCHQ press office remained CCHQ Press, so it’s clear the nature of the site. The reason we did that was to call out the inaccuracies of the lies that were coming out during the debate – the NHS is not for sale. It has never been for sale, it will not be for sale.’

 Mr Cleverly said it was the party’s digital team who decided to change the name of their Twitter feed during the debate. 

He said: ‘The digital team have a remit. I set the remit. They work within that remit. I am absolutely comfortable with them calling out when the Labour party put out complete fabrication in the public domain and we will call that out whenever they do it.’

 

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British model ‘dragged out of a rideshare car in Los Angeles’

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A Lyft driver in Los Angeles dragged a British model out of his vehicle and left her wounded and ‘traumatised’ after a row over playing music in the car. 

Alessandra Starr Ward, 25, was dumped in Melrose Avenue after the driver wrestled her out of the car on Tuesday afternoon. 

Her godmother Melanie Bonvicino has obtained footage of the alleged attack from a nearby store, which shows the driver hurling the Briton to the ground while Good Samaritans nearby try to help her. 

Model and actress Alessandra spent the night in hospital with concussion and a sprained ankle and says her life had been ‘changed forever’ by the ‘unprovoked’ attack. 

Victim: Alessandra Starr Ward, pictured, was thrown out of a rideshare car and dumped in the middle of a road in an 'unprovoked' attack by a furious driver in Los Angeles

Victim: Alessandra Starr Ward, pictured, was thrown out of a rideshare car and dumped in the middle of a road in an 'unprovoked' attack by a furious driver in Los Angeles

Victim: Alessandra Starr Ward, pictured, was thrown out of a rideshare car and dumped in the middle of a road in an ‘unprovoked’ attack by a furious driver in Los Angeles

Attack: The British model and actress was dumped in Melrose Avenue after the driver wrestled her out of the car on Tuesday afternoon

Attack: The British model and actress was dumped in Melrose Avenue after the driver wrestled her out of the car on Tuesday afternoon

Attack: The British model and actress was dumped in Melrose Avenue after the driver wrestled her out of the car on Tuesday afternoon

The model told MailOnline she was in ‘agony’ today and felt dizzy with a ‘splitting headache’ after she was kicked in the chest and stomach. 

‘I can’t believe I’m a victim. I use Lyft and ride-sharing apps all the time. All of Hollywood uses Lyft,’ she said. ‘Why did this happen to me?’ 

The 25-year-old had been returning from an audition carrying some of her scripts and her godmother booked her a car home on the ride-sharing app. 

However, 20 minutes later Bonvicino, a Hollywood publicist and crisis manager, received a call from a passer-by who was helping her injured goddaughter in the street.  

The CCTV footage shows the car pulling up by a pavement and the driver forcing his passenger out of the car after he allegedly scolded her for playing music en route. 

Another man tries to mediate, but the model is flung to the ground while her fellow passengers leave the car.  

‘[Alessandra] was very, very shaken up, she was punched in the eye and she is very, very upset,’ her godmother said. 

‘He threw her from the car, he broke the cell phone violently,’ she said.  

The model fell to the floor while wearing high heels and suffered a sprained right ankle and scratches on her legs, Bonvicino explained. 

Commotion: The victim's godmother Melanie Bonvicino praised the 'Good Samaritans' (pictured) who had come to the British woman's rescue

Commotion: The victim's godmother Melanie Bonvicino praised the 'Good Samaritans' (pictured) who had come to the British woman's rescue

Commotion: The victim’s godmother Melanie Bonvicino praised the ‘Good Samaritans’ (pictured) who had come to the British woman’s rescue 

Recovery: The British model rests in the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles yesterday after she was attacked by a Lyft driver

Recovery: The British model rests in the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles yesterday after she was attacked by a Lyft driver

Recovery: The British model rests in the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles yesterday after she was attacked by a Lyft driver 

In addition, the model suffered stage one concussion and has been warned against falling asleep even though she says she is in ‘agony’. 

She was treated at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles yesterday. 

On top of that, the driver grabbed her phone during the confrontation in the car and broke the screen, Bonvicino said. 

‘There was no provocation or justification for this action,’ she said, adding that it was ‘not a normal reaction’. 

She also praised passers-by who tried to help her goddaughter, saying: ‘So many Good Samaritan came to her aid, so many people intervened.’ 

The model’s mother is Maria Merola, who runs the high-end Merola jewellery store in West London.

Bonvicino said she had heard that the driver was released by Los Angeles police who are now reviewing the surveillance footage.   

The Briton speaking to local media after the attack

The Briton speaking to local media after the attack

Alessandra suffered concussion and a sprained right ankle after falling while wearing high heels

Alessandra suffered concussion and a sprained right ankle after falling while wearing high heels

Injured: The Briton, pictured right in hospital and left speaking to local media after the attack, suffered concussion and a sprained right ankle after falling while wearing high heels 

The Briton describes herself as an ‘actress and model living in Los Angeles’ who went to university in London.  

Pictures on her social media accounts show her appearing in a variety of fashion shoots and she attended last month’s Los Angeles Fashion Week. 

In an email to Bonvicino, a Lyft representative said the driver in question had been ‘permanently deactivated from the platform’. 

The Lyft employee said that ‘safety is Lyft’s number one priority, so to hear about anything of this nature is something we take very seriously.’ 

Bonvicino said she had tried to speak to Lyft’s CEO Logan Green, and is also demanding answers from Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti over regulation of ride-hailing firms such as Lyft. 

Earlier this year Lyft partnered with Kim Kardashian in a programme intended to help people leaving prison get jobs.     

MailOnline has approached Lyft for further comment. 

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