The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Spooky CIA

Washington, March 12 (Reuters): What’s that noise' Hearing unfamiliar sounds in any neighbourhood is unsettling, but can be outright spooky if the neighbour happens to be the CIA.

So for three years the spy agency has hand-delivered postcards to homes near the fence that encloses its headquarters in Langley, Virginia. It gives phone numbers to call if neighbours have questions about activities or odd sounds emanating from the bosky CIA campus.

Like the time a new air conditioning unit was being installed on top of a building and a helicopter delivered it up there. Or during the recent snowstorm the CIA rented snow melters which caused a stir.

“There are lots of houses that are adjacent to our fence line or close to it. Sometimes they see and hear things that gets them nervous,” CIA spokesman Bill Harlow said.

Clothes chip

New York (AP): Clothes sold at Benetton stores will soon contain microchip transmitters that allow the Italian retailer to track its garments from their point of manufacture to the moment they’re sold in any of its 5,000 shops. Benetton’s introduction of “smart tag” tracking technology will be the largest example of a trend now emerging in the retail industry, according to Phillips Semiconductors, a unit of the Dutch electronics giant that designed 15 million tags being delivered to Benetton this year.

Benetton’s Sisley line of clothing will contain a Philips electronics radio frequency ID tag that communicates its location to Benetton’s computerised supply chain network. The tags allow the retailer to learn the status of its inventory at a glance and make restocking decisions quickly.

Costly crime

Hong Kong (Reuters): Who says crime doesn’t pay' Nicholas Tse, Hong Kong’s “bad boy of pop”, has been deluged with offers of new jobs after a short jail stint, which seems to have given him more publicity than he could have hoped for. The heart throb, returning to the limelight after seven months absence from show business including two weeks in jail, said he had signed up to do commercials and movies on top of a hectic schedule of recording and concerts.

Roast row

Berlin (Reuters): German police apprehended an 11-year-old boy as he torched stolen goldfish with a home-made flame-thrower, police said today. They discovered the boy roasting the fish with a device made from a water pistol, a cigarette lighter and a stolen petrol canister.

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