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Last Updated: Saturday, 18 March 2006, 05:54 GMT
Political loans in the spotlight
Mastheads of the national newspapers

The Guardian lead talks of the "depths of secrecy" surrounding Labour's loan raising activities.

It says John Prescott and Gordon Brown - like the party treasurer - were kept in the dark about loans of nearly 14m.

The Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph both agree Mr Blair's political authority has been damaged.

But the Daily Mirror says the Tories "are even more in hock" to wealthy backers, putting the amount the party has borrowed at 18m.

Makeover too far?

The Independent is among the papers to take a dim view of the acquisition the Body Shop by the French giant L'Oreal.

"It's a shame," the paper says, when firms that trumpet their anti-corporate values "sell out to the very concerns they have always reviled".

"Shares soar, but cheats prosper", says the Times, reporting a booming FTSE - along with rocketing insider dealing.

It talks of FSA figures which suggest "rampant abuse" despite new rules designed to crack down on malpractice.

Al-Qaeda 'visit'

The Sun claims a terror suspect linked to al-Qaeda has visited parliament as the guest of a Labour peer and spent some time in the public gallery.

But Lord Ahmed tells the paper that the former detainee denies any links and remained with him at all times.

The Daily Express says the number of families hit by "death-bed taxes" will treble over the next 14 years.

Continuing a campaign for the abolition of inheritance tax, it says five million households may suffer.

Pipe dream

The Conservative leader David Cameron has been talking to the Daily Telegraph to mark his first 100 days in the job.

He insists moves such as introducing Fairtrade coffee at Tory HQ and having a windmill fitted on his roof are not part of some rebranding exercise.

Europe's great cathedral organs are under threat from an EU directive on lead content, according to the Times.

All UK church organs may be affected - even though there are no known cases of anyone being poisoned by a pipe organ.


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