Matthew Elliott

Matthew Elliott

A DEAD black lamb was found dumped at the home of Mallorca’s first black mayor.

Guillem Balboa, mayor of Alaro, has reported the incident to the Guardia Civil. It is unknown who is responsible.

Police are exploring racist or fascist motivations, and the possibility that it is a sick joke.

Balboa found the dying lamb in his courtyard when he returned from a trip with his wife just after the Alaro festival. He told police they were confronted with a putrid smell when they entered the house.Outside he found the rotting corpse of the lamb.

It was in an advanced state of decomposition and its stomach grossly inflated with gases caused by bacterial infection.

The lamb had left a trail of blood as it crawled across the patio. The mayor believes it was still alive when the culprit (s) threw it over his fence. There were no signs of a break in.

A forensic report found that the lamb had been savagely beaten and died from a heavy blow to the skull. “If it is a wild prank then I am only offended by the treatment of the poor animal,” Balboa said in a public statement.

“If it is a political criticism then it’s incomprehensible because anyone can come to the town hall and tell me what they think.

“I interpret it as a message of rejection, but all it has succeeded in doing is encouraging me to continue working for the people,” he continued.

Balboa took office as Mallorca’s first black mayor in history in June. Born in Equatorial Guinea, he moved to Mallorca as a boy with his family in 1970.

He has worked at the University of the Balearic Islands and lived in Palma until 2006 when he moved to Alaro with his wife.

Yacht a disaster

September 05, 2017

ONE of the world's most expensive vessels crashed into rocks when it ran around just 20 miles from a popular holiday resort.

The 134 metre long Serene smashed into a rocky shore in Egypt, near the world famous Sharm El Sheikh resort in the Red Sea.

Serene was built in 2011 and sold to its current owner, Mohammed Bin Salman, for close to €500 in 2015, though the exact figure was undisclosed.

Damage from the crash, apparently caused by propulsion failure, is said to be extensive. The hull has been punctured, with further damage to the bow and bulb. It was forced to remain on the rocks for several days while the weather cleared.

She was originally built for a billionaire Russian vodka magnate and was once leased for $5 million per week by Bill Gates.

Salman is a 31-year-old Saudi prince, and heir apparent to the throne, who has a taste for the luxury lifestyle. He bought Serene on a whim from the Russian vodka tycoon while on holiday in the south of France.

LUXURY house prices in Spain shot up by seven per cent in the first half of 2017. They now average €6,500 per square metre according to a report from French company Barnes.

That is more than four times the price of the average Spanish property. The massive rise in the price of luxury is especially pronounced on the country's coastal expatriate hotspots.

The Mediterranean stretch from Cadiz to Barcelona is both a hive of luxury homes, and the place were mansions, villas, and grand estates sales are performing especially well.

The situation is mirrored on the Balearic Islands. Mallorca, which boasts four of Spain's top ten most expensive properties, registered a ten per cent increase.

Spain's twin cosmopolitan cities, Madrid and Barcelona, clocked up an increase of more than 10 per cent in luxury housing. In particularly dynamic neighbourhoods, rates of almost 20 per cent were registered.

Barnes International in Spain executive Emmanuel Virgoulay said that Spanish real estate is "experiencing its best moment since the economic crisis".

With the market enjoying greater security, investors in luxury housing now trust Spain as a country with highly profitable assets", he said.

Sellers are also finding it easier to find wealthy buyers willing to splash out on luxury homes. In popular coastal areas, homes priced at more than €1 million are frequently selling in less than three months.

Barnes also found that French investors buy the fastest, usually within two months and visiting the property only two to four times. Brits take three months and five visits. The Chinese are the slowest, taking an average of nine months and 15 visits to make a decision. 

PROPERTY portal Zoopla has clocked a 17 per cent increase in British searches for European homes in just the past six weeks. Spain is by far the most searched for destination, handily beating France and Portugal for the hearts of budding expatriates.

Zoopla's research revealed that 'pool', 'beach' and 'sea view' were the most popular search terms among British householders seeking a place in the sun.

Those selling homes in Spain would do well to emphasise those characteristics in their online adverts.

Other popular phrases included 'villa', 'furnished', 'golf course', 'garden' and 'garage'.

The big question is whether the August upsurge in interest will be converted into hard sales. Or if it's simply attributable to Brits coming back from holiday with a temporary conviction that they want to live in Spain permanently.

Putting the summer surge aside, British interest in Spain has risen consistently and considerably over the past year. Since the Brexit vote property portals have uniformly noted a rise in British views of Spanish properties online.

Many viewers are believed to be retired, or soon-to-be-retired, Brits, who are eager to secure a Spanish home before possible post-Brexit red tape comes into play.

A WOMAN died in flooding as the strongest hurricane in 13 years brought torrential rains to Texas. 

A state of emergency has been declared in Houston, where the victim got caught in severe floods in the city's west side. At least 50 counties across the Lone Star State has declared a state of disaster. 

More than 1,000 people were rescued in the US's fourth-largest city early on Sunday morning (August 27)

State governor Greg Abbott told media "there is potential for very dramatic flooding". More than a metre of rainfall could wreak havoc in the worst hit areas in just a few days. 

The first known victim of Harvey was an individual in the small town of Rockport killed by a house fire in the hurricane's aftermath. 

Winds have slowed down to 80mph, making floods the central concern of emergency relief services. 

Catastrophic flooding in Houston 

THE most lucrative fight in history ended with a TKO victory for Floyd Mayweather over Irish UFC star Conor McGregor.

The undefeated American wizard drew his younger challenger into the deep waters of the tenth round before the referee stepped in.

Held in Las Vegas and sold to millions of homes and bars on PPV, the fight is expected to generate more than €500 million in revenue.

A photo of the fighters' guaranteed take home purse went viral, showing Mayweather, considered the best boxer of his generation, on $100 million. McGregor, making his ring debut, earned $30 million on the night

The odds and expert opinion were heavily stacked in Mayweather's favour. McGregor acquitted himself well in the first three rounds but grew visibly exhausted as his older, smaller, but fitter opponent began peppering him with punches.

The Irish mixed martial artist, aged 29, was barely able to stand in the tenth round. The fight was called off when he could no longer answer a hail of punches and was at risk of real injury.

It was Mayweather's last fight and he steps away from the game with a perfect 50-0 record, surpassing Rocky Marciano's 49-0.

KING FELIPE VI joined tens of thousands of people in a huge anti-terrorism march through the centre of Barcelona. 

The monarch marched alongside Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and other senior politicians. Dubbed "No tinc por", Catalan for "I'm not afraid", the rally was an act of popular defiance after the terrorist van attack that shook the city last week, killing 15 people. 

At the front of the packed procession were the first responders who tended the more than 100 wounded. Police officers, firefighters, local residents and shop owners who aided the victims led the enormous crowds during the Paseo de Gracia boulevard to Placa de Catalunya, near Las Ramblas, where the attack unfolded. 

Solidarity marches also took place in Madrid, Valencia and Vigo. 

In joining the march, King Felipe became the first Spanish sovereign to participation in a public demonstration since before the Franco-era. 

He, Rajoy and Catalan president Carles Puigdemont, who are bitterly divided by an upcoming independence referendum, made a rare show of unity in standing firm against the attacks. 

A BEARDED jihadist has been ridiculed on Spanish social media.  

The Cordoba-born terrorist featured in a video released by Daesh promising more Barcelona-style attacks. Al-Andalus, the former Islamic territory of Spain, would also be resurrected the spokesman for the terror group warned. 

But Spain's social media community refused to be cowed. Instead they mocked the style of the 22-year-old fighter, named as Muhammad Yasin Ahram Perez, who moved to Syria in 2014. 

Computer savvy Spaniards played with the jihadi's image, photoshopping it and adding comic captions in a defiant send up of the terrorist menace.

In one meme the fighter is seen staring into the camera, equipped with his gun. "An authentic paella is made WITHOUT seafood", he appears to say. 

In another he is sat with a glass of café con leche moaning about how young jihadis are clueless. 

Known as El Cordobes, the fighter, whose mother Tomasa converted to Islam, is considered the Spanish face of Daesh. 

SPAIN'S top goal scorer of all time, David Villa, is set to make a remarkable comeback. 

The 35-year-old striker has been recalled to the national team for the first time since the 2014 World Cup.

Manager Julen Lopetegui said Villa "gives us mobility and is eager". Villa will be on the team sheet alongside Chelsea trio Alvaro Morata, Pedro and Cesar Azpilicueta for the 2018 World Cup qualifying matches against Italy and Liechtenstein. 

Man Utd's David de Gea and Man City's David Villa are also in the 26-man squad.  

The former Barcelona man is one of the most prolific strikers of his generation. He has been capped for Spain 97 times, with 56 goals to his name. He is now captain of New York City FC.

If he plays in next year's tournament in Russia, it will Villa's fourth World Cup with La Roja. He scored a double against Ukraine in his 2006 World Cup debut in Germany. 

Spain take on Italy on September 2 and travel to Liechtenstein on September 5. 

'SHOWERS and storms' are being forecast for southern Spain early next week. 

The country's meteorological agency, AEMET, says a weekend cold drop will cause rainfall and thunderstorms along the southern coast from Monday (August 28) onwards. 

A report released late on Friday pinpoints the jet of cold polar air approaching from the Atlantic. 

It will move downwards through Spain, causing a 'strong destablisation of the atmosphere'. 

By Sunday evening (August 27) it will have covered most of the Iberian peninsula. Showers and thunderstorms from Monday to Wednesday in southern Spain are 'likely' and may be 'very strong', reads the report.  

It is unknown which parts of the southern coast will be worst hit. 

Early maps posted on AEMET's website suggest that Malaga and the Costa del Sol will experience thunderstorms. 

At present only cloud cover and potential rainfall is projected for the Costa Blanca and Costa de Almeria.

That is, of course, subject to change as the cold drop moves through the country. 

Cold drops are associated with extremely strong winds and intense rainfall.  

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