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Connery's independence hope

James Bond star Sean Connery has sworn not to return to live in his native Scotland until the country is independent.
The 72-year-old movie star also told The Herald newspaper that he believed the country would gain independence within his lifetime.

"I honestly believe Scotland will become independent and I will have a house in Scotland - but not until then," he said.

"If I do retire, and I have no idea if I will retire or not, then I'd certainly spend much more time there."

Mr Connery also said he could not return to his home city of Edinburgh at present because of media intrusion.

"I couldn't live in Scotland just now with what they would do to me, the media and all that, the tabloids.

Offshore account

"They crucify people. People seem to need more and more of it and they have to go further and further to compete," he said.

In another recent newspaper interview, Mr Connery revealed details of his financial support for the Scottish National Party in the 1990s.

He said he had put £750,000 in an offshore account in Jersey in 1995 and donated the £5,000 monthly interest to the party.

He also said he had paid more than £3.7m in tax to Britain in the last six years, despite living in the Bahamas.

(BBC 9th March, 2003)