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Celebs and gambling

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When it comes to the rise in popularity that casino games like poker are enjoying, it's hard to say whether online casinos like or the increased profile generated by celebrity casino gamblers has had the bigger impact. These are a few celebrities familiar to UK residents who are fond of hitting the casinos.

Shane Warne
Although some may still remember him as a corpulent Aussie cricketer, these days Warne has reinvented himself as a stylish poker player and boyfriend of Liz Hurley. He was contracted by a major online casino site to be their representative at both the UK Open Championship and the Aussie Millions in 2008, and he has become something of a fixture at the various celebrity poker tournaments held in different countries.

Teddy Sheringham
Sheringham is another former professional sportsman who has carved out a very successful second career for himself as a professional poker player since his retirement. Football fans will remember him as a long-serving striker - with a particularly memorable moment being his equalising goal for Manchester United in the 1999 Champions League final - but these days he is a very successful pro gambler, who has won in excess of $1 million at the tables.

Victoria Coren
It is not only male celebrities who enjoy casino gambling, as journalist and television presenter Victoria Coren is one of the best celebrity poker players around. She was the winner of the 2004 Celebrity Poker Challenge, took second place in the Table World Championship and became the first ever female winner on the European Poker Tour, when she won the leg held in London. Overall she has claimed more than $1.3 million in winnings from her poker playing.

Ben Affleck
Although he is a Hollywood based star, there are few in the UK who will not be familiar with Affleck's work - as either an actor or as a director. However many may not be aware that he is also a poker player of note, with his triumphs including a first placing at the California State Championship in 2004.

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Helen Flanagan swapped Corrie for Covent Garden cobbles as she became Miss Santa in the latest campaign against animal cruelty.

The former Coronation Street star and I'm a Celebrity contestant, 23, wore a costume without the traditional white trim to promote the anti-fur message to shoppers in London. 

She teamed up with animal campaign group PETA, holding up a sign which read "Keep it fur-free under the Xmas tree".

Flanagan, who was the highest ranking British star in FHM's sexiest women poll this year, is encouraging people to avoid presents which involve animal cruelty as she dressed in a red dress, white stockings and red platform stilettos in the freezing cold. 

She said: "Fur is cruel and gruesome, and it belongs squarely in Christmas' past.

"With all the wonderful stylish, fur-free designs available today, it's never been easier to celebrate with Christmas gifts that are as kind as they are chic."

PETA says coats, collars and cuffs made from fur involved "immense animal suffering" and claims that some animals are skinned while still alive.

It points out many designers - including Calvin Klein, Stella McCartney, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger and Vivienne Westwood - now shun fur from their fashion ranges. 

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23_09_CORO_TINA_DAVID_02.JPGStella is determined to find a way to move on with her life and stuns her family with a shock announcement, while Hayley realises she needs to see Christian before she dies.

Leanne heads to the hospital where Nick has been taken for tests and Tina urges David to tell Kylie the truth now while he can. Michelle feels let down by Carla when Peter gently puts her in her place at the factory

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Jason tries to persuade Eva that they can have a relationship, while a phone call from Christian puts a damper on Hayley's high spirits.

Kylie tells Gail that Lily's uncertain paternity is casting a shadow over everything and her mood worsens when she hears Nick has regained consciousness. Michelle feels undermined when Carla goes on a business trip and leaves Peter in charge at the factory.

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13_09_CORO_FAYE_GRACE_01.JPGKarl hurriedly prepares to leave for Spain with Stella, but will the police come calling as the net closes in on him? 

Sally is hurt when she receives a dismissive text from Tim, who clearly doesn't feel any guilt about standing her up, while Owen expresses an interest in buying Audrey's flat, and Grace shows another side to her personality

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Stella is unnerved by Karl's behaviour, which he blames on pre-wedding nerves. But how will he respond when all eyes are on him in the Rovers and Jason accuses him of setting fire to the pub? Hayley urges Roy to help her savour every moment, while Tyrone warns Tim not to mess Sally around, and Audrey's presence in the flat irritates Marcus

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Jason confronts Karl after he and Dev make more discoveries about the night of the Rovers fire, leaving the groom a nervous wreck on the eve of his big day. Hayley returns home in positive spirits, and Sally asks Tim to accompany her to the wedding. Meanwhile, Marcus is put out when Maria offers Audrey a place to stay until the work on her house is complete

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08_09_CORO_KARL_POLICE_01.JPGHour-long episode. Karl tries to remain cool when the police call to investigate Craig's disappearance, while Dev and Jason speculate about the connection between the two. 

The factory workers visit Hayley in hospital, but Roy is still struggling with the situation and can't bring himself to open the cafe. David has an idea to cheer up a jealous Max, and Audrey looks forward to getting her house back to normal

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The mother of a girl who claims Coronation Street actor Michael Le Vell, real name Michael Turner, raped her broke down in tears as she described being told about the alleged abuse.

The woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, told Eleanor Laws QC, prosecuting, her daughter revealed the alleged abuse after attending a self-help conference. She said her daughter told her: "I just remember all the times he (Le Vell) raped me."

The woman continued: "My life just exploded. I just stood there and hugged her.....I started to cry and cry and couldn't stop...she said 'Mummy don't worry, calm down.'"

She said her daughter later told her how Le Vell used a teddy bear against her mouth while raping her and he would force the girl to give him oral sex.

The witness said: "In the car she said, 'It's happened a lot more than I'm making out Mummy. It's a lot worse.'

Le Vell, 48, who plays car mechanic Kevin Webster in the ITV soap, has pleaded not guilty to 12 charges including five of rape, three of indecent assault, two counts of sexual activity with a child and two of causing a child to engage in sexual activity.

The girl's mother also described how she went to Le Vell and confronted him after her daughter told her of the alleged abuse.

She told the court she said to the actor: "She's made an accusation. You raped her when she was younger."

"Before I finished that sentence he said, 'Oh you are joking! This is a joke! It's a joke! You are having a laugh!"'

Earlier, the alleged victim gave evidence from behind a screen, as Alisdair Williamson defending Le Vell, questioned her about alleged inconsistencies in her story.

She said "I've had so many flashbacks in the past few weeks. I remember a lot more."

Mr Williamson also suggested that when she was interviewed on video by police she said some "silly things" that she has left out of her account given in court.

The girl denied the defence's accusation that she had told a "little lie" to police saying she had never talked to anyone about the alleged abuse.

Mr Williamson claimed the witness "told lots of girls" about it. "I told two friends because they saw me crying," the witness replied.

The case continues 2.30pm today.

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19_08_CORO_LLOYD_PAUL_03.JPG7.30pm: Paul, Steve and Brian head home after a disappointing night out, but Lloyd stays on and is approached by a gang of lads making racist comments. Karl rushes to stop a drunken Craig from confessing all to Stella, while Leanne lashes out when she catches Gail, Kylie and David discussing how she's coping. Sally and Anna clash over Tim, and Michelle is convinced Peter is trying to edge her out of a job.
8.30pm: Paul returns to the bar and comes to Lloyd's aid, while the hospital consultant informs Gail and Leanne that Nick should regain consciousness soon. How will David react? Karl tries to persuade Craig not to talk to Beth about the fire, Sally makes a bid to win Faye round by inviting her to a barbecue, and Stella tells an unimpressed Tina she'd like her to do a few shifts at the Bistro to help Leanne out

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09_08_CORO_TOMMY_TINA_02.JPGThe doctor reveals that Nick has swelling on the brain, and the police arrive at the hospital to question David. Will he be able to keep up his act?

Mandy and Lloyd are exhausted by fighting to keep their relationship alive, and Tina is dreading Jake's party, but insists on working her shift despite Tommy and Rita's concerns. Norris sacks Craig after he dumps the papers he was meant to deliver, and Tracy sets her sights on the bookmaker's flat

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Nick is put into an induced coma after brain surgery, while David claims he can't remember anything about the crash. Mandy and Lloyd bicker over their parenting skills, Tina insists she's fine with Izzy celebrating Jake's homecoming at the Rovers, and Tracy manipulates Steve in a bid to get more time with Rob. Elsewhere, Norris regrets employing Craig as his paper boy.

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After an explosive argument, David unfastens Nick's seat belt and grabs the wheel of his van, which swerves into the path of an oncoming lorry. Will the brothers survive the impact? Rob tries to mislead Tracy about moving in, prompting her to ask if he's only after her money, while Beth forces Craig to admit that he did poach Norris's paper boy. Relations are tense between Lloyd, Mandy and Jenna, and Tina tries to put the turmoil over Jake behind her

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Nick fears the worst when Tina reveals that David has discovered Kylie cheated on him and is out for revenge. Peter tells Rob he should ask Tracy to move in, and Izzy tries to persuade Owen to let Gary work part-time. Meanwhile, Tina returns from her holiday, Jenna starts her job at the cafe, and Norris suspects Craig is playing tricks on him

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Hayley tells Roy she feels suffocated by his fussing, while an angry Lloyd confronts Paul and accuses him of bullying Jenna into backing his story about not being a racist. Rob tries to wind Peter up about taking money from Carla, and Tommy suggests he and Tina go on holiday after Gary and Izzy reveal that Jake will be coming home next week

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After harassing the consultant for answers, Roy demands Hayley rests and loses his temper when she insists on going out. Carla is impressed as Peter starts work at Underworld and reveals he wants to learn everything about the business, Paul asks Jenna to talk to Lloyd for him, and Audrey thanks her friends for a surprise birthday get-together

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Deirdre catches Tracy having an argument with Rob about his gambling with their joint money. Will she discover where her daughter got her half of the cash? Hayley learns more about her condition as the doctor discusses the test results, while Paul and Lloyd call a tentative truce after pressure from Eileen and Mandy

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Rob places £500 on an accumulator and Peter accepts the bet - even though he's aware it could bankrupt him. Hayley confides in Sylvia about her health worries, before setting off for her ultrasound scan. Mandy suggests to Eileen that they try to get Paul and Lloyd talking again, and Audrey worries when she discovers a crack in her living-room wall.

Lloyd accuses Paul of being a racist after the fireman makes an ill-chosen comment during a game of darts, while Peter tells Carla he's going to turn his business around by offering the most competitive odds in town. Sinead decides to call things off with Chesney, David is frustrated when Nick and Leanne reconcile, and Rob hates life as a debt collector until Tracy offers to help spice things up.

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Nick is horrified as the police search the Bistro, and tells Leanne she can't take risks with his business again, while Katy confronts Ryan after reading his texts. Paul has a bad day dealing with hoax calls from a group of kids and forgets to ask Eileen whether her counselling helped, and Peter struggles to come to terms with Carla being the main breadwinner

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The student night at the Bistro goes well, until David phones the police. Chesney wonders whether to tell Katy that Ryan has been seen out with another woman, while Jason urges Tim not to give up on Faye after learning that Owen warned him to leave town. Eileen prepares for her first counselling session, and Carla and Michelle head out to celebrate the boom in business at Underworld

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05_07_CORO_GAIL_DAVID_01.JPG7.30pm: Anna comforts Faye and is appalled to learn from Jason that Tim stayed on in Newcastle with a woman. How will she react when he returns? Kylie tackles David about his behaviour when he takes his anger out on Gail by blaming her for his unhappy childhood, while Roy has last-minute doubts as he sits in the doctor's waiting room and Sinead begins to realise Chesney only takes her out to score points in front of Katy.
8.30pm: Anna berates Tim for neglecting Faye, who asks him if he really wants her to live with him, while Katy has a heart-to-heart with Sinead about Chesney. Beth and Kirk are shocked to see Ryan out with another girl, while David encourages Nick to agree to Leanne's suggestion of a student night at the Bistro

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01_07_CORO_NICK_LEANNE_01.JPG7.30pm: Nick threatens Peter after David plants more doubts in his mind about Leanne's faithfulness, while Roy retreats into his shell and refuses to discuss his sleepwalking. Faye feels abandoned by Tim when Jason tells her he had to stay on to work in Newcastle, Tommy worries that Tina is struggling to cope without Jake, and Emily is convinced Norris has only been looking after her so he can get his hands on her will
8.30pm: David tells a stunned Tina that Kylie had one-night stand and the baby might not be his. But she's even more shocked by what he plans to do about it. A lonely and hungry Faye sees Anna welcoming Gary and Izzy round and wishes she was still part of the family, Hayley resolves to take action about Roy's problems, and Norris apologises to Emily for his recent behaviour

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Faye lies to Dev when he calls for the rent, telling him that Tim has just popped out. Will he believe her? Nick returns home and quizzes Leanne after David drops further hints about her having an affair with Peter. Elsewhere, Hayley panics when she discovers Roy has gone missing, and Norris admits to Emily he's worried about being made homeless when she dies.

Gary, Izzy and Tina make plans to move on with their lives, and Faye decides to go back to Tim's empty flat after overhearing Anna complaining to Owen about stroppy teenagers. Gail tells Nick of her suspicions about Leanne and Peter, while Hayley worries that Roy might be having a nervous breakdown as his erratic behaviour continues

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