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Queanbeyan teen pleads not guilty to killing his 10-year-old brother

12/12/2018 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

A Queanbeyan teenager charged with accidentally killing his little brother has pleaded not guilty to the offence.

The 16-year-old appeared in Queanbeyan Children’s Court on Tuesday, where he is charged with assault causing the death of his 10-year-old brother.

The charge was introduced recently as part of legislation designed to address the problem of one-punch attacks.

On the same day the Queanbeyan teenager pleaded not guilty to the offence, a Newcastle court recorded the first conviction of a person under the new legislation.

In the Newcastle case, the man was charged with manslaughter, but pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of assault causing death. He will be sentenced in June.

The Queanbeyan incident occurred on May 23, 2016. It is alleged the teenager grabbed hold of the 10-year-old’s wrist and punched him in the ribs. The younger boy attempted to get away when the teenager allegedly pushed him, causing the boy to hit his head on the corner of a door frame.

The 16-year-old and his mother commenced CPR on the boy, however he was pronounced dead at the Canberra Hospital days after the incident when his life support was switched off.

Previously in court, the boy’s solicitor Michael Bartlett said the autopsy found the 10-year-old had a tissue disorder affecting his cerebral artery.

While a second opinion was sought on the previously undiagnosed brain condition, Mr Bartlett said he’d been told the expert view of the forensic psychologist who diagnosed the condition “doesn’t need to be questioned”.

Following the not guilty plea, both parties agreed the matter needed to be committed to trial because it was a homicide.

But the parties could not immediately decide which superior court should hear the matter.

Mr Bartlett called for the matter to be heard in the district court, where he said other matters with maximum 20-year sentences were heard.

The crown prosecutor suggested the matter should be committed to the supreme court, as this charge was a “statutory alternative” to murder and manslaughter.

The court concluded the case would be heard in the district court.

An application to waive a committal hearing was granted and the case will proceed in May.

‘Lost the biggest bet’: Gambling king convicted of insider trading

12/12/2018 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Four times, authorities went after famed Las Vegas sports gambler William T. Walters, and four times the man known as Billy emerged victorious.

But on Friday, Walters’ luck turned, as a federal jury in Manhattan convicted him on fraud and conspiracy charges in one of the biggest insider trading trials in years.

“To say that I was surprised would be the understatement of my life,” Walters, 70, told reporters as he left the courtroom.

“If I would have made a bet I would have lost. I just did lose the biggest bet of my life. Frankly I’m in total shock.”

His lawyer, Barry Berke, said he would appeal the verdict.

Walters, one of the most successful professional sports gamblers in the country, was accused in the latest case against him of using non-public information from Thomas Davis, a board member of Dean Foods of Dallas, to make more than $US40 million from 2008 to 2014 by realising profits and avoiding losses.

The investigation into Walters’ activities and subsequent trial drew in prominent figures like Carl Icahn, the billionaire investor and unpaid adviser to President Donald Trump, and Phil Mickelson, the champion professional golfer. Swift decision

The conviction of Walters lifted something of a cloud that had hung over the US attorney’s office in Manhattan since December 2014, when a federal appeals court threw out the insider trading convictions of two hedge fund managers. That ruling led prosecutors to vacate the convictions and guilty pleas of several other people.

The verdict against Walters was also a coda to a series of insider trading prosecutions led by Preet Bharara, the former US attorney for the Southern District of New York who was fired days before the trial began.

The jurors in Walters’ case reached their decision after deliberating for a little more than half a day, rendering a swift decision in a trial that lasted 14 days spread over four weeks.

The quickness of the verdict vindicated the government’s trial strategy, including a decision to give a central role to Davis, an acknowledged embezzler and philanderer who had pleaded guilty to several offences connected to the insider trading scheme.

Davis, the government’s main witness, had his credibility repeatedly called into question by lawyers for Walters. The defense team said Walters had been falsely implicated by Davis, who was desperate to escape punishment for his own misdeeds.

One juror interviewed outside the federal courthouse in lower Manhattan where the trial was held said that he and the rest of the jury had not been swayed by that argument.

“We looked at his credibility,” the juror, Lonnie Drinks, said of Davis. “Everything was factored.”

Walters was convicted of 10 charges of securities fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy, the most serious of which carry a potential sentence of up to 20 years in prison.

“Armed with his illegal edge, Walters made huge, perfectly timed trades, at times accounting for over a third of the trading volume in Dean Foods stock,” Joon Kim, the acting US attorney in Manhattan, said in a statement.

“In engaging in his yearslong stock fraud scheme, Walters underestimated law enforcement’s resolve to pursue and catch those who cheat the market.”

Walters, who was once profiled by “60 Minutes” because of his betting prowess, was not the only big name to come up during his trial. The Icahn connection

Icahn emerged in testimony and court filings as having had frequent discussions with Walters. A broker for Walters testified on cross-examination that some of Walter’s stock-trading ideas had come from Icahn, who was not charged with wrongdoing.

During a hearing outside the presence of the jury, one of Walters’ lawyers told the judge that Walters and Icahn were friends.

The lawyer, Paul Schoeman, added: “Mr. Walters has a long history of investing in stocks that Mr Icahn has publicly announced he’s interested in.”

Mickelson was also mentioned during the trial as someone who had traded in Dean Foods shares and once owed nearly $US2 million in gambling debts to Walters.

Mickelson made roughly $US1 million trading Dean Foods shares; he agreed to forfeit those profits in a related civil case brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Known as “Lefty” for his left-handed stroke, Mickelson was not criminally charged. Though he was once seen as a potential witness at Walters’ trial, he was never called to testify. Tips on the Bat Phone

Prosecutors said that Walters had tried to hide his actions by supplying Davis with a prepaid mobile phone called the Bat Phone to use while conveying secret information and by sometimes speaking in code.

During the trial, prosecutors displayed phone logs and trading records, and an agent with the FBI testified that Walters sometimes made major trades within moments of speaking with Davis on the phone.

For instance, the agent testified, Davis and Walters spoke on the phone for 10 minutes one day in 2008 beginning at 12:54 pm. At 1:05 pm, Walters bought 462,200 shares of Dean Foods stock for about $US9.3 million.

Davis provided Walters with secret Dean Food information about future earnings statements, the planned purchase of another company and a pending initial public offering, prosecutors said.

At the same time, Walters arranged for loans of nearly $US1 million to Davis, who had financial problems and repaid only a small portion of what he borrowed, prosecutors said. ‘Babe Ruth of Risk’

Defense lawyers offered a contrasting account. They said that Walters was a skilled and fearless trader, referred to by one of his brokers as “the Babe Ruth of Risk,” who did not need inside information. Davis, Walters’ lawyers said, was trying to save himself by maligning Walters.

The competing narratives were on display throughout the trial. Davis testified that he had acted as a “virtual conduit” of secrets and had supplied Walters with an “enormous” amount of information.

At one point, Davis said, Walters provided him with the Bat Phone to use while communicating about Dean Foods, adding that later he had thrown it into a creek after federal agents visited his home.

Davis also testified that Walters sometimes spoke in code, using “Dallas Cowboys” to refer to Dean Foods and asking “How’s the milkman doing?” when inquiring about the company, then the country’s largest dairy processor.

Defense lawyers cross-examined Davis at length, eliciting acknowledgments that he had been squeezed for money, had taken $US100,000 from a charity he ran, had mislabelled expenses on his taxes and had lied to many people, including investigators with the SEC.

Walters’ lawyers suggested that Davis had misled prosecutors about his sports gambling habits and his contact with prostitutes, at one point reading into the record phone numbers for escort services in Chicago, Denver, New York and San Francisco that Davis, who told prosecutors he had not hired prostitutes in recent years, had called in 2010, 2011 and 2014.

Berke also questioned the existence of what he called the “so-called Bat Phone,” which was never recovered, pointing out that Davis had first told prosecutors that it was black before then testifying at trial that it was maroon.

The New York Times

Tigers stars align to topple Eagles

12/12/2018 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Richmond coach Damien Hardwick was smiling after his side outlasted West Coast at the MCG on Saturday afternoon.

It was a performance won more through grit than polish, ably led by his side’s four best players – Alex Rance, Dustin Martin, Jack Riewoldt and Trent Cotchin all outstanding – but with solid performances from his second tier.

“I thought our first half was a bit untidy, we looked a little bit flat,” he said. “We challenged our boys a little bit at half-time, and I thought all of our leaders stood tall – Trent, Jack, Alex, and then Dusty came to the fore as well.”

It wasn’t just about the leaders. Reece Conca continued his fine start to the season, and at the fall of the ball, the Tigers’ small forwards were dangerous. Daniel Rioli had nine touches, but his impact was undeniable, his agility and balance sublime, his third-quarter goal brilliant.

But it was the Tigers’ determination to hunt the ball inside the contest that outworked the Eagles.

“I thought we got our mix right of our inside and then guarding the outside,” Hardwick said.

“They hurt us a little bit on the outside early. I thought Lambert did a terrific job on Mitchell from about halfway through the second quarter, which probably stifled them a little bit, but I was really pleased that our guys, when challenged, lifted the bar.”

Adam Simpson acknowledged that his side had been beaten for intensity around the ball.

“Our poor intent in the third really cost us. We probably should have been hurt by that a bit more, but hard-ball gets – your ability to stick our head over the ball when it really mattered – went away from us in that third quarter in particular. Having said that, the game was still on the line right up until the last five minutes.”

The Eagles have just a five-day break before they take on Sydney, who are in the unfamiliar position of being without a win after three rounds, but Simpson said he expected no more from the Swans’ renowned hardness than any other side.

“I think every team wants pressure and intensity in the contest and to win the contested ball,” he said.

“That’s coming every week. The Saints were the same last week; North the same round one. So that’s just a given now, I don’t think it’s any team’s particular style, just some teams are better than others. We’ve got to move on pretty quick. On Monday we’ll start working on the opposition with our players.

“We’ll take some positives out of today, but we’ll also take some big areas of improvement and like I said, Richmond were consistent all day in that area of the game, and in the end it’s hurt us.”

Richmond, by contrast, are three and zip. Next week, they take on an improving Brisbane on the road: win that, and you have to go back to 1995 for the last time the Tigers opened a season with four straight. “Brisbane are actually playing some pretty good footy at the moment, have taken it up to a couple of sides,” Hardwick said.

“It’s always tough going interstate, but we travel pretty well, so we look forward to that challenge up on their hostile deck.”

Mid-air incidents involving drones increases

13/06/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Mark Will said more information should be provided to drone users in order to prevent crashes or near misses with aircraft. Photo: Rohan ThomsonAccording to Mark Will, there’s only one guarantee when it comes to flying drones: at some point, they’re going to be crashed.
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Having flown drones for almost two years, he also runs a “drone boot camp”, which teaches new users how to safely fly the aircraft.

However, as the technology becomes more accessible, Mr Will said he wasworried there wouldbe an increasing number of incidents such as drones coming into close contact with planes or flying into restricted airspace.

“My concern is that there’s inexperienced hobbyists flying with no regulations,” he said.

“It has the potential to get worse the more they become normal in the market.”

Mr Will’s comments follow a recent report released by the n Transport Safety Bureau of mid-air incidents involving drones.

Between 2012 and 2016, more than half of all droneincidents involved near misses with aircraft and more than 60 per cent of those happenedin 2016.

It’s predicted there will be a 75 per cent increase in the number of drones being involved in near misses with aircrafts in 2017, with the report finding the number of incidents involving drones “increasing exponentially”.

Most of the incidents happened in capital cities, with Sydney accounting for 37 per cent of all near misses between drones and aircraft.

The rest of the incidents involved the drones crashing into the ground, either from a loss of control, bird strikes or engine failures.

The report did not specify how many incidents happened in Canberra, however, data from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority found two had occurred in the capital during the last year.

One involved a complaint after a drone was seen flying over a Canberra house,while another drone user was fined $900 for crashing his drone at the n War Memorial.

Drone users are not allowed to fly within 5.5 kilometres of an airport, and cannot be flown higher than 120 metres or within 30 metres of a building.

Restrictions also apply to flying drones over crowds of people.

Other restricted airspaces in Canberra also include theMajura Army Range as well as the Mills Cross Radio Telescope.

Mr Will said more information should be provided to drone users in order to prevent crashes or near misses with aircraft.

“We should consider drone ownership like dog ownership or a car licence. You as the user have to equip yourself with the knowledge and information,” he said.

“An airport is defined as an area with aircraft taking off and landing, so in theory you can’t fly within 5.5 kilometres of the South Care base in Hume or Canberra Hospital.”

While no aircrafthave been hit by a drone in , Mr Will said the outcome could be disastrous if a plane was struck.

First appeared on the Canberra Times

Queanbeyan stabbing victim Zeeshan Akbar, mourners hold vigil

13/06/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

People gather for a candlelight vigil outside a Caltex service station in Queanbeyan where 29-year-old Zeeshan Akbar was fatally stabbed. Photo: Sitthixay DitthavongIn theplace where darkness struck the city, the Queanbeyan community brought light.
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Alongside the flowers that had been laid outside the Bungendore Street Caltex since news broke of cashierZeeshanAkbar’s murder, mourners brought candles in honour of the 29-year-old.

Worshippers from the Queanbeyan West mosque Mr Akbar attended organised the Saturday night candlelight vigil.

The tribute followed a special prayer vigil at the mosque, where Queanbeyan PalerangRegional Council administrator Tim Overall was invited to speak about the community.

The candles were placed alongside the flowers that hadformed a small mound on the side of the road, upon which sat a portrait of Mr Akbar held upright by an improvised mix of sticks and twigs.

People visited to pay their respects steadily through the night, altering their dog walking routes or parking alongside the petrol station to read the tributes.

29-year-old Zeeshan Akbar was fatally stabbed. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong

Others slowed their vehicles while passing the service station, where blue tarps remained over the bowsers and investigators continued to inspect the scene.

The mourners encircled the candles and offered quiet prayers or touched Mr Akbar’s portrait.

Mr Akbar’s co-worker Mohammed Tassawar said his friend was a compassionate, generous man who had never raised his voice at a customer.

He saw Mr Akbar on Wednesday, when he came in to visit the manager.

“Whenever he used to come here, he was very nice to all the staff,” he said.

“We were very friendly and got on well with the customers. The locals are always thinking of us.”

Mr Tassawar said the manager sent himand others a text message encouraging them to attend the candlelight vigil earlier on Saturday.

Other members of the community outside the mosque joined in the vigil.

“Local people are coming continuously here,” he said.

“People are very good here in the community. One of the elderly ladies who often comes in, I saw her yesterday coming and laying flowers here.”

The cricket match Mr Akbar was due to be playing on Saturday was cancelled.

Tributes have been received across social media and from overseas, including Mr Akbar’s native Pakistan.

First appeared on the Canberra Times

World Tai Chi and Qigong Day celebrated with free session on April 29 at Market Street Lawn

13/06/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

AS ONE: Community members take part in a free event at Civic Park last year for World Tai Chi and Qigong Day, which involves people around the world coming together to share a common vision of hope and healing. I have never tried Tai Chi but have often been intriguedwhen I have seen people doing Tai Chi at various locations in Newcastle.
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Quite often I will see someone quietly going about their business early in the morning at Merewether Baths or on the beach.

It always looks so relaxing and I have often thought I would like to give it a go to experience for myself what it is all about.

Hunter residents get the chance to do just that this month when AmandaHeidke, instructor at the Tai Chi Centre, holds a free community session at 10am on April 29 at Market Street Lawn.

The session will be part of World Tai Chi and Qigong Day, which is held in hundreds of cities, spanning 80 nations and involvestens of thousands of people around the world comingtogetherto share a common vision of hope andhealing.

I spoke with Amanda about the event last week and the benefits of doing Tai Chi.

My first question was how do you describe Tai Chi to someone who has never experienced it.

It is complex, she told me, but could be explained “as a series of slow and graceful movements, which we call forms”.

“In a nutshell,” Amanda said.“Tai Chi can be described as a complete system for focusing and balancing body, mind and spirit for living a long, healthy and happy life.

“Not everyone is aware that Tai Chi is in fact an ancient Chinese martial art, the health and relaxation aspects are really side effects.

“The flowing movements contained within a Tai Chi form disguise the focus, strength, control and coordination required to first learn and then relax into the movements.One of the biggest obstacles new students face is relearningcorrect posture and body alignment, which we have forgotten during the course of our busy life.”

I was also interested to know who can in fact do Tai Chi because I see people of varying ages doing it around town.

“It is accessible to almost anyone,” she said.“We have students of all ages and physical capabilities. From people who havebeen dancers, boxers, football players and external martial artists [judo, karate]who are looking to refocus their energy, to relax and realign their bodies.

“To those who are recovering from surgery, managing heart conditions, arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, chronic pain depression and anxiety.”

The health benefits are many, Amanda told me, the most immediate being “a clearer and more relaxed mind and a greater ability to deal with difficult situations with less stress and anxiety”.

“Several weeks of very simple movementswill improveflexibility, strengthand balance, with other benefits including improvedfunctioning of internal organs, better breathing and improved sleep,” she said.

People can turn up on the day to Market Street Lawn, which was chosen as a location because Amanda “liked the idea of bringing people into the heart of our beautiful city to connect with each other”.

Renee Valentine is a writer, qualified personal trainer and mother of three. [email protected]苏州夜总会招聘.au.

INSTRUCTOR: Amanda Heidke, from the Tai Chi Centre, wants to share the benefits of Tai Chi with Newcastle during a free session on April 29 at Market Street Lawn.

Woman kicked unconscious as gang terrorises Melbourne’s north-west

13/06/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

The woman told Channel Seven she was hit in the head when she tried to help a young man being threatened. Photo: Twitter: @7NewsMelbourneA woman was kicked unconscious during a rampage by a gang of youths in Melbourne’s north-west on Saturday.
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Police say the crime spree started in Mickleham just before 3amwhen three males got out of a dark blue car and approacheda parked car in a Mount Ridley Road car park.

The trio tried to force their way into the car but were thwarted and drove away.

Police say about half-an-hour later, the same group approached a 22-year-old man who was starting ashift at a Woolworths supermarket in Craigieburn.

The victim, Nicolas Tonna, told 9 News that the men were armed with cricket bats and a knife.

“I was approached by about three to four African males, all dressed in black and face covered and everything, and all brandishing weapons asking for everything I have,” he said.

They stole his wallet, phone and keys and drove off in his 1998 Holden Commodore sedan with registrationPGJ 268.

Five minutes later, the stolen car pulled up alongside a group of teenagers who were walking along AitkenBoulevard on the way to Craigieburn North McDonald’s.

Police say that a 40-year-old woman who was picking up her teenage daughter intervened and was hit in the head.

A witness, Alex Drnford, told 7 News that one of the males swung a bat at the woman’s head but missed.

“Because she dodged it, the guy flung his foot up and kicked her in the head,” he said.

The Craigieburn woman was taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The same group is then believed to have gone to a BP service station in Geelong Road, Brooklyn, about 5am.

Police say three males, armed with a wooden bats and knife, held up the store for cash and cigarettes before demandingthat a man at the bowser hand over his car keys.

The man pleaded with the trio not to take his car and they left without stealing anything from him.

Police say they are looking for four males of African or Pacific Islander appearance.

The Commodore has not been recovered.

Any witnesses or anyone with information should callCrime Stopperson 1800 333 000.

First appeared on The Age.

Family who lost houses in Brisbane floods gifted rent-free luxury home for year

13/06/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Daniel, Helen and Zander Gallo outside their home at Luscombe after 1.5 metres of floodwater went through it on April 3. Photo: Lisa Maree WilliamsA stranger has come to the rescue of the Gallo family by offering them a temporary luxury home rent-free for a year, after raging floodwaters washed away one house on their property and inundated the other before theireyes.
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Almost a week ago the family of four and theirtwo dogswere plucked from the roof of their father-in-law’s home in Luscombe, 45 kilometressouth-east of Brisbane,by SES crews. Momentslater, the house wasripped apart by the swollen river, while the family’s main home saw 1.5 metres of floodwaters tear through it, leaving them with only what they were carrying –a handful of clothes.

But on Thursday, a good Samaritanwas listening to the ‘Lend a Hand’segment on radio station Triple M. SteveScanlanoffered the family a five-bedroom house in Eight Mile Plains, south-east of the Brisbane CBD.

Mr Scanlan said his previous tenants had just moved outwhen he heard the Gallofamily’s “incredible story” and said they should be comfortable in theiraccommodation, with the property featuring an indoor spa, heated pool, twoen suites and a recent refurbishment.

“It’s the perfect place for them to get their feet back on the ground and not have to worry,” he said.”I knew this is what I had to do.”

Mr Scanlan offered his property rent-free for a year and said he was able to afford it, but would have to make some changes in his life.In particular, he said an overseas holiday he had planned would have to wait.

“I’d be happy to not go on a holiday for 10 years to give this family this house,” he said.

“It doesn’t even matter at the end of the day, after seeingwhat these people have gone through.”

74 Blue Grass Crescent, Eight Mile Plains, was donated to the Gallo family rent-free for a year. Photo: Supplied

Mr Scanlan said his greatest worry was whether his new tenants would like the house or find themselvestoo far away fromfriends and family.

However, if the Gallos did like the home, Mr Scanlan was happy to discuss extending their stay.

Helen Gallo said she was “completely overwhelmed” when she heard the offer live on radio. She said the community had been incredibly supportive after the tragedy, with people coming from as far asToowoomba to help them clean up.

“My family, the community, the street are amazing,” Ms Gallo said.

“We’ve got neighbours putting on a barbecue and people rocking up with gloves, water,food and they’re off working to clean up.”

The family’s ordeal started about11.30pm on Monday, when the nearby Albert River broke its banks and sent raging floodwaters across the property.

Ms Gallo gathered her family at the american-style barn where her father-in-law lived because it was higher than the main residence and to ensure everyone stayed together. However, within 45 minutes the water had risen to the landing,by 1am the attached garage had been washed away and the family were left clinging to the roof of the barn.

Ms Gallo said shehad her feet braced against the gutter with her two children, 11-year-old Zander and eight-year-old Sienna,behind her to ensure no one slid off into the water. Meanwhileher 70-year-old father-in-law John and two husky pups, Storm and Thunder, were sheltering inside the house.

Ms Gallo’s husband Daniel was only reunited with his family later after trying several different roads to reach them but finding all were cut off.

“It just came so fast,” Ms Gallo said.

“There was once when I thought, ‘this could be it’.

“But you just have to stay strong and be a rock for your kids.”

After making 16 calls to emergency services and communicating withtriple-zerooperators, Ms Gallo saw the rescue boat atthe end of her street.

“I was just so relieved,” she said.

“They had kept telling me previously that ‘we just can’t get to you’ due to the force of the water.”

Logan SES controllerJim Ferguson and his team said the water was so strong it took them an hour to travel about 1.5 kilometres up the river with the motoron the boat going flat out.

Afterspending about three hours on the roof of thebarn, the Gallos wererescuedminutes before the building was washed away and crushed.

“It’s like one of those things you see in the movie, when you actually see it and think of the weight and how much pressure is in that water you just think ‘wow’,” Ms Gallo said.

“I’m just so thankful they (the SES) did what they did.”

The family had owned the propertyfor four years and long-term residents in the area said they had never seen water do what it did to the Gallos’ home.

Both buildings wereinsured, but Ms Gallo was waiting to find out what the policies would cover.

Ms Gallo and her two children were staying at her sister’s house, while Mr Gallo and a few mates were staying in a donated caravan on-site to guard against looters who were ransacking the area.

They werehoping to see Mr Scanlan’s offered house next week and give their children some normality after the trauma of the flood.

First appeared on the Brisbane Times.

59-year-old discovers she is adopted on Christmas Day

13/05/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Kim Ross as a baby with her adoptive mother, Doreen Adams. Photo: SuppliedOn Christmas Day, 2016, Brisbane woman Kim Ross shared something unusual on Facebook.
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The 59-year-old mother and wife then got a phone call. It was an old family friend.

“Kim I think there’s something you should know,” he said.

The next 30 seconds saw Kim scrambling to process several unnerving facts. Her parents were not her biological parents. They died without telling her this. But almost everyone else in her family knew. Kim was, understandably, stunned.

“It did sort of muck Christmas up,” she says, putting it mildly.

Certainly the timing could not have been more incongruous. Christmas had been a time for family and sentimentality. Now, it seemed her entire childhood – and 40 years of adulthood – had been a lie.

Holidays were always happy times when Kim was growing up. There were pets and cousins and grandparents. An only child, Kim lived with her parents in the seaside Auckland suburb St Helier’s Bay, New Zealand. There was a stint in the US, before her father eventually relocated the family to ‘s Gold Coast whenKim was 16. By the time she was 19, her father was dead. What the grieving Kim didn’t know was that she was burying the truth of her identity along with the man she’d always called dad. His dying wish was that his daughter be kept in the dark. The family, sworn to secrecy, kept their word.

“He was an imposing figure,” Kim recalls. “He was also very much loved. And it was a different time; people kept secrets back then.”

Yet secrets aren’t as easily kept these days as technology improves people’s ability to play family detective.

Trevor Jordan, president of adoption support agency Jigsaw Queensland and a late-discovery adoptee himself, saysfamily skeletons have started walking out of closets en masse in recent years. He says what had been a gradual awakening since ‘s closed adoption system was eased in the 1990s has, in the past two years, become much more prevalent, leading to a surge in demand for counselling services.

There are several reasons for this, he explains. The digitisation of government records, the commercialisation of family trees via companies like Ancestry苏州夜总会招聘, the rise in social media, and a significant reduction in costs associated with DNA testing. “Over this Christmas we saw really heavy advertising of the home testing on television … and people have been buying them as gifts,” Jordan says. Since 2008, when Victorian company DNA Solutions became one of the first firms to offer at-home test kits, there’s been a proliferation of competitive products. Price has also come down, from nearly $300 close to a decade ago, to about $150 today.

Jordan admits he too is waiting for the results of a saliva sample he sent to the US labs of Ancestry苏州夜总会招聘. “There has been an upturn in interest, and we’re finding people are needing our help when they’re confronted with truths about all sorts of things; not just adoption. It could be that you receive results that might indicate the man you grew up thinking was your biological father may not actually be, and that can present all sorts of challenging questions… and I’m not sure we’re properly prepared for the consequences this [home DNA testing] might bring about.”

Trevor’s fears are shared by retired molecular biologist Dr Michael Brisco, who helped developed DNA tests while working as a scientist at Flinders University. There are Facebook groups with thousands of members all searching for genetic clues about their identities, but Dr Brisco points out interpreting the results of DNA tests requires a comprehensive understanding of the complex language of genetics. He says test results used to be given in clinical environments by qualified genetic counsellors, adept at translating scientific data and communicating probable impacts; these days, many people are receiving genetic test results in an email from a company overseas. Dr Brisco says the DIY DNA process should be treated with caution.

“There are some tests that are far more conclusive than others,” he says. “There’s no reason people shouldn’t carry out these at-home tests, and certainly the results can reveal broad details about someone’s likely origins, but these are just quick looks – glances if you will – a glance at something that doesn’t really tell you anything specific or especially conclusive. Of course, if there is something that appears amiss, well then you check it out.”

Checking out a wonky result was exactly what led Kim to uncover the truth. Even before she started plotting her family tree online, she had been bothered by a strange, instinctive feeling that she somehow didn’t quite fit in. She would often joke with her mother and family about the small, seemingly inconsequential differences between her and her cousins. She was tone-deaf, they were musical. They were very petite, she was always just a little bit larger. Sometimes Kim would wonder aloud whether she really was her mother’s daughter. But her questions were always rebuffed, her doubts dismissed. She was reassured she was one of them, and that was all there was toit.

“‘Of course you’re not adopted,” Kim recalls her parents saying. “I used to say, ‘If I am, it’s OK; you can tell me,’ but they never did.”

Indeed, no-one ever breathed a word. It wasn’t until her grandmother died that she came across a crucial wrinkle in the family’s fabric. While sorting papers after the funeral, Kim discovered documents pertaining to the Ngai Tahu; a prominent iwi from southern New Zealand. It was a surprising discovery; no-one had ever discussed Maori ties. This was the revelation that led Kim to research the family’s newfound heritage. She didn’t know it then, but she was starting down a path that would eventually unravel her entire identity.

“I began researching our family’s heritage when I was about 30, and eventually, I signed up for Ancestry苏州夜总会招聘,” Kim explains. “As the technology progressed, and the more I used the program, the family tree I was able to chart became more detailed.

“Then they started offering DNA analysis. I thought, ‘Why not give that a go?’.”

So Kim spat in a tube and sent the sample to the company’s labs in the US. She was expecting some sort of chart back that would indicate what percentage of her DNA was Polynesian, and what other ethnicities she was linked to. Dr Brisco explains this kind of testing works by comparing an individual’s genetic sample with data collected from people with well-established, multi-generational links to a particular location. “Therefore you can assess whether someone’s particular DNA sample is more or less like the Irish samples in the database,” he says.

Kim’s results, however, were startling to her.

“It showed no Polynesian blood,” she said. “It didn’t make any sense. So I followed it up and the company told me that I could be Polynesian, but that I didn’t carry any genetic markers or indicators, and I thought, ‘Ok, that sounds like a reasonable explanation’. But it I still felt odd about it, so I posted the result on Facebook, and that’s when I got the phone call.”

“That’s when an old friend of the family called me up and told me, ‘Kim, you’re adopted’.”

More phone calls followed, along with apologies, confessions and explanations. The extent of the deception became clear. It was confirmed without a doubt when Kim applied for, and received, her pre-adoptive birth certificate.

“Pretty much everyone in my family knew except me,” she says. “One of my cousins said, ‘Kim, you’ve got to realise, they did it out of love for you. As far as they were concerned, you were their child, and that’s all there was to it.'”

But Kim finds it hard to get asense of closure, particularly because her parents are no longeralive.

“I don’t agree with their decision in hindsight. Especially when I asked the question over and over, and was told I was wrong, only to find out later that my instinct was right.”

Kim confesses her biggest anguish was her adoptive mother’s silence.

“I had 30 years with my mother after dad died,” she says. “I felt a bit disappointed she wasn’t honest with me. Though as far as I’m concerned, she is still my mother, and I couldn’t have asked for a better one.”

Three months later and Kim has, however, tracked down her real mother.

“She’d married twice, had name changes, but I found her. I thought, ‘I’ll write her a letter rather than call’ – I didn’t want it to be a shock for her; her daughter calling her, out of the blue, after 60 years.”

Kim waited for a reply to arrive, and kept busy with her research. There was no father’s name on the birth certificate. The blank space was a source of great frustration. Trevor Jordan says all too often, questions around paternity are the main source of confusion for people looking for answers.

But even when Kim made contact with her mother, she was left bitterly disappointed. Though responsive, Kim’s biological mum wasn’tentirely forthcoming. And she lacked one vital detail: the legal name of the man who left her a pregnant teenager. “It was a different era,” Kim says. Nurses removed Kim from her mother as soon as she was born, her mother was alone in a house for unmarried girls, and had been sent there by a family who never spoke of the matter again.

“Back in her day there was a stigma attached to me,” Kim says. “I can’t imagine what it would have been like to have been in the ’40s,’50s and find yourself pregnant at 15 years of age. You’re still a child.”

Kim’s not sure if she’d ready to meet her real mother yet. She’s not sure her real mother wants to meet her either. Kim’s children know, but for them, Kim’s adoptive mother will always be grandma, and the ties to her family remain steadfast, despite the absence of blood, and the upheaval of last Christmas.

“It still all feels a little unreal,” Kim says.

“Everyone is entitled to the reality of their own existence.”

First appeared on the Brisbane Times

Manny Pacquiao-Jeff Horn fight at Suncorp Stadium

13/05/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

“I believe I can beat these guys”: Boxer Jeff Horn is set to take on Manny Pacquiao. Photo: Getty ImagesThe biggest fight in n history has been given the green light. Former schoolteacher Jeff Horn will face the great Manny Pacquiao at Suncorp Stadium on July 2, with the bout now officially locked in for a super Sunday in Brisbane.
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Fairfax Media understands details were due to be released on Sunday for the bout, which stands to sell out the famous rugby league venue and give local fighter Horn the chance of a lifetime to upset one of the sport’s legends, as well as claim the WBO welterweight crown.

Both camps have now signed their respective contracts and the remaining details between the Queensland Government, stadium management and promoters have been ironed out, even if a spokesperson for Tourism and Events Minister Kate Jones insisted no deal had yet been finalised as of Saturday.

The venue was one of the remaining sticking points but Horn’s promotional company, Duco Events, have ensured it would be fought in front of a partisan home crowd, which they are hoping will fill every seat in the 52,500-seat cauldron.

Earlier in the week, Duco had played down ‘speculation’ about the fight as the final preparations were still being made. But now the countdown can officially begin to what will be one of the biggest sporting events staged in this year.

Pacquiao had been keen to fight Amir Khan in the Middle East but with that fight going up in smoke, the Filipino politician will step out against the 29-year-old Horn, who has 16 wins and a draw in his brief professional career after going pro following the London Olympics.

Pacquiao, 38, retired briefly before coming back to claim the WBO title from Jessie Vargaslast November. He has now entered the final stages of his career and Horn stands to be one of his final opponents.

He would likely begin his training in the Philippines before relocating to Brisbane in the lead-up to the fight. A strong contingent of his fans are expected to travel to Brisbane for the event.

Earlier in the week, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, who manages Pacquiao and has a joint-deal with Horn, told theLos Angeles Timesthe deal was essentially done and there was nothing standing in the way of the bout going ahead.

It will likely be a pay-per-view in but could be aired on free-to-air television across the United States. The undercard will be another talking point but it could include heavyweight Alex Leapai, who once challenged Wladimir Klitschko and has come out of retirement.

Horn remains a steady underdog but has been in steady training after the original date in April fell through. He believes he has all the tools to spring an upset on Pacquiao, which could end his career if it came to fruition.

First appeared on the Brisbane Times

Sweden truck attack suspect 39-year-old Uzbekistan-born man

13/05/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

The scene shortly after a truck crashed into a department store in central Stockholm on Friday. Photo: APSwedish police said on Saturday that they had arrested a 39-year-old Uzbekistan-born man they believed had hijacked a beer truck and carried out a terrorist attack by driving the truck into a crowd of people in Stockholm the day before, killing four and injuring at least 15 others.
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Prosecutors and police officials did not identify the suspect, but AndersThornberg, head of the Swedish Security Service, said at a news conference that the man had been on authorities’ radar some time ago.

Thornbergsaid that the agency had looked into information it received on the suspect last year, but that it had not led to anything. He said the suspect was not on any current list of people being monitored.

The Swedish national broadcaster SVT reported that a bag with explosives had been found in the truck used in the attack.

Thornbergsaid that the agency had looked into information it received on the suspect last year, but that it had not led to anything. He said the suspect was not on any current list of people being monitored.

The Swedish national broadcaster SVT reported that a bag with explosives had been found in the truck used in the attack.

Some reports suggested the suspect was a father of four who had previously posted jihadist propaganda on his Facebook page and had images of people injured in the explosion at the Boston Marathon in April 2013.

On Saturday, the police chief, DanEliasson, said: “We have found something in the truck in the driver’s compartment, a technical device that should not be there. I cannot say whether this is a bomb or some sort of flammable material.”

Prosecutors said the suspect had not spoken, and there was no immediate word of any criminal charges. ButEliassonsaid there was “nothing to indicate we have the wrong person.”

Eliassonwould not say how long the suspect had been living in Sweden.

He said there were clear similarities with the deadly terrorist attack in London last month, in which a British-born man used a vehicle to mow down a crowd of people on Westminster Bridge before he was shot and killed by police.

On Saturday, people placed flowers outside the department store in Stockholm where the attack occurred as a memorial to the victims.KarolinskaHospital in Stockholm said that six of the injured had been released. Police said eight people remainedhospitalised.

The beer truck, stolen earlier on Friday, mowed down pedestrians alongDrottninggatan, a busy pedestrian shopping street.

The suspect was detained in a northern Stockholm suburb on Friday and later arrested on suspicion of having committed a terrorism crime, police said.

The New York Times

First appeared on SMH

Bass Hill Public School principal turned violence and attitude around

13/05/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Melissa Proctor, Principal of Bass Hill Public School with students, Kory Allen, Daniel Glynatis, Maher Tahan, Roukaya Maarbani, May Ali and Nourhan Ghalayini, in Sydney. Photo: Janie BarrettAs many as 10 brawls a week, children walking out of class whenever they felt like it and teachers refusing to set foot in certain parts of the playground.
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That was what Melissa Proctor was confronted with when she first came to Bass Hill Public School as its new principal in 2014.

“It was viewed by the community as the school you don’t go to,” Mrs Proctor said.

“There was violence on the playground, violence in the classrooms, disrespect towards adults.

“The culture was that if you didn’t like something someone did or said, you’d hit them.”

Three years later, it’s a completely different story.

Students who were some of the worst offenders are now on the school’s student representative council and winning awards for positive behaviour.

The number of suspensions have dropped from as many as 50 in Mrs Proctor’s first year on the job to about 20 last year and just one so far this year.

She said the narrow academic focus of schools and teachers is partly to blame for common behavioural problems.

“We teach kids writing, reading and numbers but we expect them to behave,” she said.

“So bit by bit, we taught them what we wanted to see.”

She started talking to children and their parents and getting to know the families at the school.

“We had one little boy who would pick up sticks and hit people at lunchtime,” she said.

“When we started talking to him and his dad, we worked out he didn’t want to be out on the playground with 350 other kids, it was too much for him.

“His teachers worked with him and now he’s doing very well.”

Mrs Proctor also made it impossible for students to get out of class, no matter what they did.

“Kids had the idea that if they act out, they’ll be sent out and won’t have to learn,” she said.

“We told them they’d always be sent back and we’d talk to them at lunchtime.”

The school stands out for the much broader approach it takes to learning, with time set aside for meditation and mindfulness in the classroom.

“We have a social and emotional learning curriculum, not just an academic curriculum,” she said.

“We’re looking more at wellbeing, which means kids are calmer, their brains are more focussed and they’re ready to learn.”

Mrs Proctor’s success has led to her winning a scholarship to Harvard University in July to do a week-long leadership course with two other n principals, under the Harvard Club of Scholarship program.

“It’s an incredible opportunity to experience an international perspective and bring it home,” she said.

“And I get to go out and share my school community and the amazing things my teachers and students have done.”

First appeared on SMH

North West jockey Darren Jones dies after fall in Warialda Sprint

13/05/2019 | 苏州桑拿会所 | Permalink

Darren Jones.
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Tragedy has struck at Saturday’s Warialda Cup meeting with the death of popular North West jockey Darren Jones.

Tamworth’s Jones was one of three jockeys who came down after a terrible fall in the Warialda Sprint (1100m).

The 48-year old fell when aboard favourite Montague Clan in the third event, the horse coming downalong with True Commitment (Melanie Bolwell) and Achanizo (Leanne Henry).

The three were takento Warialda Hospital, with Jones unconscious when transferred, while Henry complained of general soreness and Bolwell also unconscious.

National Jockeys Trust posted an update on Saturday night stating Bolwell, an apprentice indentured to Tamworth trainer Sue Grills, had been transported to Gold Coast Hospital with serious head injuries.

The update stated Bolwell had not regained consciousness, with her injuries classified as serious.

The meeting was abandoned after race four, with the 2017 Warialda Cup among two races not run.

Originally from Glen Innes, Jones moved to Tamworth in the mid-1980’s as an apprentice to Merv Corliss.

He rode predominantly for Sue Grills, Leon Davies and Leslie Jeffries, who he teamed up with to ride Lonely Orphan to second place in Friday’s Orange Cup.

Racing family will come together to support Darren Jones family after tragic loss. Member of NSW Jockeys Association. pic.twitter苏州夜总会招聘/luVJKVTfYM

— Andrew Bensley (@AndrewBensley) April 8, 2017Some may whinge about the Sydney Cup.. today we lost Darren Jones in a tragic race fall.. True gentleman all the way and good jockey 🙏R.I.P

— Dean Pettit (@deanpet74) April 8, 2017Absolutely gutted for the Darren Jones family. A good honest man that worked very hard.

— Blake Spriggs (@BlakeSpriggs) April 8, 2017Races can be re run but lives can never be replaced. Extremely sad to hear the passing of Darren Jones.

— Nathan Rose (@TappyRose) April 8, 2017My sincerest condolences go out to the family and friends of Darren Jones. A great ambassador and college for as long as I can remember. Rip

— Adrian Layt (@adrianlayt) April 8, 2017Tragic news from NSW country track Warialda today where NSWJA Committee Member Darren Jones has passed away after a racing incident – AJA

— NationalJockeysTrust (@JockeysTrust) April 8, 2017My thoughts and prayers go out to Darren Jones and his family. A devastating loss to the racing industry #RestInPeace

— Tommy Berry (@TommyBerry21) April 8, 2017