Bush blaze danger: fires continue to burn

Aisha Dow   Victoria’s Country Fire Authority say they remain extremely concerned about lives and property as four out of control fires burn in the state’s centre and north east.

Latest Victoria news

Firefighters brace for warm weather, gusty winds - but hope for rain

Helicopters work on the fire near Wangaratta.

Aisha Dow, Vanessa Desloires 11:12 PM   Two persistent fires continued to burn out of control in the state's north east on Thursday, while new blaze in the Heathcote wine region had authorities briefly alarmed.

Victorian bushfires: residents count the cost

Gerrard Bakker and Steve Gannon survey burnt-out farm area in Creightons Creek, near Euroa in Central Victoria.

Darren Gray, Rural Affairs Reporter 10:47 PM   Emergency fodder deliveries have started to feed hungry livestock on fire-affected properties in the Creightons Creek area, south of Euroa, where many horse, cattle and sheep properties were hit by the fast-moving blaze late on Tuesday.

Christmas Day weather revealed

Looking for a Christmas tree.

Aisha Dow 9:34 PM   Victorians searching for the perfect Aussie Christmas should pack up their cars - and perhaps some sort of floatation device - and head to the country.

Drunk mother crashes car on way to kindergarten, police allege


Aisha Dow 7:52 PM   A Frankston woman on her way to pick her son up from kindergarten has been caught driving almost seven times over the legal alcohol limit.

Homeless served posh roast, bad jokes and good company in a city lane

Chef Andrew Blake's lunch for the homeless in the Melbourne CBD.

Carolyn Webb 7:38 PM   Chef to the stars Andrew Blake took a break from catering for corporate and society events to serve a Christmas banquet to the homeless in a city lane on Thursday.

Commuter delays on Upfield line after person hit by train

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7:29 PM   Commuters are facing delays on the Upfield line after a person was hit by a train near Coburg station on Thursday afternoon.

Ventura bus drivers' strike set to hit Christmas

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Adam Carey 5:41 PM   Buses will be grounded across much of Melbourne's east on the last three days before Christmas after Ventura bus drivers chose on Thursday to strike.

IBAC to review Corinna Horvath complaints to police

Corinna Horvath was paid an undisclosed sum of compensation after an unlawful police raid on her Somerville home in 1996.

Jane Lee 7:30 PM   The Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission is reviewing Victoria Police's handling of allegations police attacked Corinna Horvath almost 20 years ago.

Police exceeded powers and breached the human rights of African man, says judge

Magnus Kaba

Steve Butcher, Jane Lee 5:16 PM   A Victorian judge has found that police exceeded their powers and breached the human rights of a man who claimed to have been racially harassed.

Record numbers charged over lighting fires on bushfire danger days

Crackdown: Police are laying more charges than ever against people lighting fires on banned days, since the horror that was Black Saturday.

Nino Bucci 4:51 PM   The number of charges for lighting fires on days of total fire ban or during bushfire danger periods has reached a 10-year high, as police crack down on the foolishness that has sparked destructive blazes since Black Saturday.

Federal Auditor called on to look at East West

Anthony Albanese has written to the National Audit Office asking it look at why Prime Minister Tony Abbott's government allocated $3 billion to the project "without a scrap of evidence" as to whether the project was value for money.

Richard Willingham, State Political Correspondent 4:46 PM   The federal auditor-general has been called on to investigate the Abbott government's funding of the controversial East West Link.

Interaction with lions in new zoo enclosure

A lion at Melbourne Zoo. The new enclosure houses three 13-year-old male lions, among other animals.

Bridie Smith 4:45 PM   Eyeballing a cat in the morning isn’t that unusual if you’re a toddler. But eyeballing a big cat at Melbourne Zoo, well, that’s something to brag about at daycare.

Deaths mar holiday season at Victoria workplaces

Sad end: Workplace deaths have marred the holiday season.

Jason Dowling 4:37 PM   It has been a lethal conclusion to 2014 at work places in Victoria with seven deaths in seven weeks. 

Actor to face 103 child sex abuse charges

Actor Jeremy Kewley outside Melbourne Magistrates Court.

Adam Cooper 4:30 PM   An actor with credits on some of Australia's most popular television programs has been charged with more than 100 counts of performing indecent acts on boys.

Are you drunk or intoxicated?


Nino Bucci 3:07 PM   While at a Christmas gathering, between the third and sixth toast, some of us may ponder: is there a difference between being intoxicated and being drunk?

Victorian man accused of trying to meet Qld teen for sex

Queensland police arrested a Victorian man who allegedly travelled to the state to meet a 14-year-old girl for sex.

Marissa Calligeros 2:39 PM   A Victorian man, who allegedly thought he was travelling to Queensland to have sex with an underage girl, has been arrested in an undercover sting.

Former policeman jailed for exchanging information for drugs

Former policeman David James Branov, who has been jailed for exchanging police information for drugs.

Adam Cooper 2:33 PM   A policeman who released confidential police information to a drug dealer in exchange for quantities of the drug ice will spend at least two and a half years in jail.

New kid on the block: Matthew Guy bars East West Link critics, Twitter users claim

Building blocks: Matthew Guy on Twitter.

Henrietta Cook 2:22 PM   Victoria's new Opposition Leader Matthew Guy appears to have "blocked" Twitter users opposed to the East West Link.

Inside Victoria's fire zone: Property owner films journey through bushfire

Jacob Haddrill and his father drove through the fire zone on Wednesday night.

Marissa Calligeros 1:27 PM   Terrifying footage emerges of two property owners driving through Victoria's fire zone as flames race along the roadside and raging winds whip up embers.

'Lack of evidence' finding from Maureen Braddy, Allan Whyte disappearance inquest

Maureen Braddy: missing since 1968.

Hannah Carrodus 1:12 PM   Coroner finds 'simply a lack of evidence' from inquest into 1968 disappearance of Bendigo teens Maureen Braddy and Allan Whyte.

Richard Yan square(d)

Meet your namesake

Konrad Marshall 1:05 PM   To make things easier in telling the tale of Richard Yan and Richard Yan, let's use their middle names, shall we?

Black Saturday theft: Grieving mother pleads for return of dead son's memorial

The sculpture dedicated to Sam Matthews was stolen this week.

Marissa Calligeros 12:31 PM   A grieving mother pleads for thieves to return a memorial sculpture dedicated to her son.

'Despicable act': Father jailed for life for murdering daughters

Charles Mihayo has been jailed for life for murdering his two young daughters.

Mark Russell 12:04 PM   A man who cold-bloodedly murdered his two young daughters in a ''hideous crime'' will spend more than 30 years in jail.

Truckie jailed over fatal train derailment

Melville Bollen has been jailed for causing the derailment of a Metro train killing one person.

Mark Russell 11:22 AM   An elderly truck driver who caused the fatal derailment of a Metro train has been jailed for five years.

Top VCE schools: Mount Scopus Memorial takes title from MacRob

Illustration: The Age

Vanessa Desloires 11:07 AM   Mount Scopus Memorial School in Burwood has emerged as the top VCE school for 2014.

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Melbourne Express Live: Thursday, December 18, 2014

Larissa Nicholson 9:17 AM   Melbourne Express is a live daily blog bringing you what you need to hit the ground running - news, weather and transport updates, and compelling stories from The Age and beyond.

Victoria bushfires claim four homes

Firefighters battling the blaze at Wodonga on Tuesday.

Tammy Mills, Marissa Calligeros, Aisha Dow and Darren Gray   Victoria's fires have destroyed at least five homes and the rural community around Euroa continues to be threatened by the Longwood fire.

Longwood fire burns: 'It looked like lava'

The view from the Haddrill's farm

Aisha Dow   Jacob Haddrill stood briefly atop a hill on his Gooram farm on Tuesday night and watched the land burn.

Cavity search at Seaford brothel; woman found

Diana Hodgetts and Nick McKenzie   Victorian authorities have launched legal action to shut down a Melbourne brothel after discovering a Chinese woman hidden in a secret cavity in one of its walls.


The secret report Napthine won't let you see

Much work went into the preparation of a state-based reform agenda, so why has it never been released?

Victorian jobs: Hockey will have the last say

Denis Napthine's employment boast is actually an admission of failure.

State election: grubby campaign, tight result

Fifty-one days out from polling day, the battle for power is set to get nasty.