ACT News

Canberra Mornings Live: Thursday July 3

And that's a wrap for the morning blog.

Stay with us today as we bring you the latest on the death of a man overnight at Perisher.

We'll be back from 7am tomorrow with the latest in local, national and international news.

A Canberra drug user who trafficked ice and heroin to fund his habit has been sentenced to more than four years in jail.

Trong Ruyen Bui, 46, pleaded guilty mid-trial to two counts of trafficking drugs in 2012. He was sentenced in the ACT Supreme Court on Wednesday.

Police had tapped his phone calls and he was under physical surveillance. They found heroin, ice, drug paraphernalia and mobile phones when officers searched his car and house in July 2012.

Bui's DNA was linked to drugs found at his two-storey home and in another man's car. He had fought the charges, but pleaded guilty to both counts on the second day of a trial in April this year.

The court heard Bui, who migrated from Vietnam in 1991, started to use drugs after his wife died in 2005 and he became the sole carer of their two daughters. He trafficked ice and heroin to fund his drug and gambling habits.

The killing of a Palestinian teenager raised fears of a cycle of revenge attacks for the death of three Israeli youths, and the US urged both sides to avoid escalating tensions.

Police said they were checking several possible leads for the Palestinian's death, including criminal motives, and investigating the possibility that the victim was forced into a vehicle earlier today. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu instructed police and security officers "to act as quickly as possible" to find who was behind the murder, and called on "both sides not to take the law into their own hands."

The Israeli leader, without providing evidence, has accused the Hamas militant group that controls the Gaza Strip of killing the Israeli teens who went missing last month, and warned that his government is ready to retaliate. Hamas today blamed Israel for the death of the Palestinian youth.

 

A man has died overnight at Perisher.

Police were contacted by the man’s employer about 10.50pmon Wednesday night after he did not arrive for his rostered shift.

A search began when it was discovered he had not returned from snowboarding earlier in the day. Searchers found his body about 11.30pm.

The man is yet to be formally identified. A post mortem examination will be held to officially determine how he died.

Initial inquiries are focussing on whether the man fell while snowboarding.

More to come

 

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has thrown his support behind a more assertive Japanese military, as a leading Chinese analyst warned that the growing tensions on China's periphery were going to get worse.

Mr Abbott said Japan's decision to loosen the constraints of its post-war pacifist constitution would make it ''a stronger strategic partner for Australia''.

His endorsement came after two of his senior ministers gave strong warnings about growing conflicts on China's periphery and Fairfax Media reported growing military links with India.

Australia, India and Japan have all moved to fortify their military postures and forge links with each other and the US in response to growing anxieties about China.

"Japan has been an exemplary international citizen for decades and has made an important contribution to maintaining ...
"Japan has been an exemplary international citizen for decades and has made an important contribution to maintaining stability and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region": Tony Abbott. Photo: Ken Irwin
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Leeza Ormsby has written the playbook for Australians on how to get off a drug charge lightly in the Balinese court system.

The New Zealand-born Sydneysider will, as a result of her 10-month sentence, be home by the end of the year, avoiding the decades-long nightmares faced by Schapelle Corby and the Bali Nine.

  The first thing Ormsby did right when she was arrested on February 12 was shut her mouth. She was caught about to enter a villa containing large portions of MDMA and hashish, bagged up and apparently ready to sell, as well as death penalty-worthy drug paraphernalia (digital scales). In her bag was a half-smoked hashish joint which seemed to link her to the drugs. 

In her favour, there was no direct link between the two sets of drugs (at least none that the Balinese police investigation uncovered) and Ormsby had not even rented the Askara Villa, though she did have the key in her possession.

Her second wise move was to hire local lawyer Ary Soenardi. He has a good reputation from a drug defendant’s points of view. 

Leeza Ormsby in court to hear her sentence.
Leeza Ormsby in court to hear her sentence. Photo: Michael Bachelard

Two Mr Fluffy homes sold recently for well below their previous worth show the extent to which the asbestos crisis is affecting house values.

The homes are among 1049 properties cleared of Mr Fluffy loose-fill asbestos insulation 20 years ago, many of which have since been found to still contain the dangerous fibres.

One was the Deakin home at the centre of allegations about whether its history had been properly disclosed. It is understood to have sold for around the land value of about $640,000, well below the original asking price of $870,000.

The other belonged to a member of the Fluffy Owners and Residents' Action Group, which promotes full disclosure of the asbestos issue to potential buyers as well as tradespeople and others. Action group spokeswoman Brianna Heseltine said the fact the house sold would be welcome news for other owners.

North Korea fired short-range rockets into the sea off its east coast on Wednesday morning, South Korea's Yonhap News Agency said, one day ahead of a state visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Seoul.

North Korea, which tested two short-range missiles on Sunday in violation of a UN ban, is expected to be high on the agenda when Mr Xi meets his South Korean counterpart, Park Geun-hye.

Mr Xi, who is due to arrive in Seoul on Thursday in his first visit to South Korea since taking office last year, is reciprocating Ms Park's visit to China a year ago.

An undated picture released from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un ...
An undated picture released from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un observing a tactical rocket launch. Photo: AFP

Minister for Housing Shane Rattenbury has announced a $30,000 funding boost for Canberra's apprentices as part of the Apprentice House scheme.

The one off grant of $30,000 will be help the ACT Building and Construction Industry Association employ a youth engagement officer who will provide support and mentoring for residents living at Apprentice House.

“It can be difficult for apprentices working on the minimum wage to find safe and sustainable accommodation for the duration of their apprenticeships," said Mr Rattenbury. 

"Initiatives like Apprentice House are invaluable in providing secure, short-medium term accommodation for young apprentices starting their training.”

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has copped an absolute barrage from a shirtless Canadian jogger who's had enough of the Mayor's antics. He quickly became the attention of the media rather than the larger-than-life Mr Ford, which is quite a feat.

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Territory and Municipal Services are warning of temporary road closures on Uriarra Road between the entrance to Stromlo Forest Park and Bindabella Road. The closures are due to the Cycling Australian under-19 National Road Cycling Championships.

The closures will run from 10am to 3pm on Friday July 4 and from 9am to 5pm on Saturday July 5 2014. Traffic delays can be expected at the following intersections with Uriarra Road.

  • Swallowtail Road
  •  Brindabella Road
  • Cotter Road
  • Mountain Creek Road
  • Fairlight Road.

Barriers as well as warning and diversion signs will be erected to alert people of the closures.

Essendon's off-field team are preparing for their clash with ASADA with the club pressed for a decision by the end of the week about whether players will have to join the case.

The road to Corin Forest is open this morning for those who feel like escaping Canberra.

Corin Forest spokesman Andrew Snell said there's good cover up on the fields and they're hoping for some more fresh snow on Saturday.

TAMS are out on the roads this morning making sure the roads are in working order for the weekend.

A Qantas flight from Los Angeles to Melbourne was turned back about an hour into the 14-hour flight after water started gushing down the aisle into economy from a leaking pipe in business class.

A spokeswoman for the airline said the captain decided to return the A380 to Los Angeles due to passenger discomfort, rather than any fears about safety.

The water came from the plane's drinking water supply, she said. It leaked into the economy cabin through the roof, from the business class cabin on the upper deck.

"It wasn't a safety issue, it was just passenger discomfort," the spokeswoman said.

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Clyde Rathbone is set to join comedian brother Dayne on the Canberra Theatre Centre stage this Saturday for one night only in It's Me Mandela. We have two double passes to the show to give away.

To win a ticket you just need to email jil.hogan@fairfaxmedia.com.au and tell her in 25 words or less why you want to see the show. Winners will need to collect tickets from the Canberra Times in Fyshwick by 4.30pm Friday.

It may be warmer than it has been the last couple of days although it's still looking pretty cold out there. This picture was uploaded by Katy a couple of minutes after 9am

Canberra Times July 3
Canberra Times July 3 

Here's a quick look at what's on the front page of the Canberra Times this morning. From the slopes of Thredbo to centre court at Wimbledon.

Our Wimbledon boy wonder

DFAT Jakarta stampede threatensAusAID work

Mr Fluffy homes fetch reduced prices

Skier’s Thredbo avalanche terror: I thought I was dead

Today's paper also includes the Inside Story lift-out bringing you in-depth reporting on international news and Australian politics. The section is published in partnership with the Swinburne Institute for Social Research in Victoria.

The lift-out features Peter Browne's look at The Australian's history and Rupert Murdoch's business strategy, along with features on Labor's persuasion problem and the challenges facing the Northern Territory.

An obese bureaucrat has failed in his attempt to get taxpayers to pay for his suburban lawn to be mowed after he refused to allow his two adult children and wife to be cross-examined about their ability to do the work instead. 

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal found evidence about his family's inability to mow the lawn "exaggerated, selective, superficial, incomplete and unconvincing".    

"The tribunal believed that three able-bodied adults could easily find time to mow and trim the lawns of their family home for the 1-2 hours a fortnight or less required," the tribunal's published decision said.

"At a more fundamental level, we found that the (man's) breathlessness, fatigue, dizziness and sweating complained of derived from the applicant’s obesity, deteriorating cardiac condition and sleep apnoea."

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