British tourist charged with grooming Sydney girl, 13, for sex

British tourist charged with grooming Sydney girl, 13, for sex Police speak with the man, left, moments before he was taken into custody. Photo: NSW Police
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Police seized a phone and computer belonging to the man. Photo: NSW Police

TweetFacebookA British touristwho allegedly groomeda 13-year-old Sydney girl to have sex in his campervanhas been caught in an undercover sting.

The 34-year-old man, who was travelling Australia’s east coast in a campervan, was arrested in Westmead, in Sydney’s west, on Friday after arriving from Cairns.

Police allege that last week he began talking online to a person who he thought was a 13-year-old girl living in Sydney.

He engaged in “sexually-explicit conversations with the child,” police said in a statement.

“The mantold the child he was driving down the coast from Cairns and made arrangements to meet when he arrived in Sydney.”

However, the ‘girl’ was actually an undercover police officerfrom theNSW Police’s Child Exploitation Internet Unit.

The man was met with detectives when he arrived in Westmeadshortly after 11am on Friday.

Officers conducted a search of a campervanand seized a number of items for forensic examination including an iPad and iPhone.

Police seized a phone and computer belonging to the man. Photo: NSW Police

Police released photos of the van showing a makeshift bed set up in the back.

The man is expected to appear in Parramatta Bail Court on Saturday on charges of usinga carriage service to procure persons under 16.

Members of the Sex Crimes Squad’s Child Exploitation Internet Unit (CEIU) speak to the man. Photo: NSW Police

Sex Crimes Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Linda Howlett, said yesterday’s arrest is a timely reminder for parents and carers to speak with young people about the dangers of talking to strangers online.

“While the online environment allows us to be better connected with people we know, it also provides opportunity for people we don’t know to connect with us – and this includes strangers talking to our children,” she said.

She said it is common for young people to feel uncomfortable reporting inappropriate conversations.

“I urge parents to make sure they let their children know they don’t need to be embarrassed or upset – no one will judge you,” she said.

She said young people should becareful about providing personal details to someone they only know online and take extreme caution if making plans to meet up.

Knights stun Eels to bury away-game hoodoo

YOU BEAUTY: Dane Gagai congratulates Mitch Barnett after his early try. Picture: AAPNEWCASTLE ended an away-game losing run dating back almost two years and climbed out of the NRL cellar with a stunning 29-10boilover against Parramatta at ANZ Stadium on Friday night.
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The Knights last won on the road in Melbourne on August 24, 2015, and had endured a 23-game losing streak in enemy territory.

Yet they dominated the fifth-placed Eels from the opening exchanges to claim their third successive win and biggest scalp since Nathan Brown was appointed coach at the end of the 2015 season.

The upset triumphlifted Newcastle to five wins, equal with Wests Tigers, who host Manly at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday.

The two teams have equal differentials of minus-181 points, but the Knights have scored more points (370 to 323) and have hence, temporarily at least, climbed off the bottom.

Newcastle have now beaten St George Illawarra, the Warriors and Eels in successive weeks.

For the 12thtime this season, Newcastle led at half-time. Of the previous 11 half-time leads, only three led to wins.

Former Eels winger Ken Sio opened the scoring against his old club in the sixth minute when quick hands gave him a yard of space on the left edge.

Two minutes later, lock Mitch Barnett scored his third try in two games after combining with Brock Lamb and Dane Gagai.

Halfback Trent Hodkinson converted both tries.

Ten minutes later, turbo-charged Eels centre Michael Jennings burst through some flimsy defence to score a runaway try.

On the last play of the first half, Parramatta hoisted a bomb and it ended in the hands of fullback Will Smith, a former Knights lower-grader, who strolled over.

Tempers flared at this point and a host of players from both teams became embroiled in a melee.

Smith went from Parramatta hero to villain 14 minutes into the second half when he was sin-binned for a professional foul.

Within a minute, Newcastle extended their lead when Lamb laid on a try for back-rower Lachlan Fitzgibbon.

Six minutes later, the Maitland-born five-eighth stepped his way through Parramatta’s goal-line defence for his third try in as many games.

Hodkinson’s goal made it 24-10 to the visitors with 20 minutes to play.

Sio’s second try, a spectacular one-handed, diving effort, took the result beyond doubt.

Lamb capped another fine all-round game with 78th-minute field goal.

How to make sure your marriage vote is counted

Confused about the postal vote on same-sex marriage? Here’s some of the big questions about the survey and the answers you need to make sure your vote is counted.
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Who will oversee the postal survey?The Australian Bureau of Statistics will be responsible for polling the country on whether the law should be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry.

Who will be able to vote?The voluntary survey will cover all Australians on the electoral roll.

You are eligible to enrol if you:

are an Australian citizen, oreligible British subject,aged 18 years and over, andhave lived at your address for at least one month.If you are an Australian living overseas, you must have registered an international address to participate in the postal vote.

You can enrol to vote, or change your personal details, by visiting the Australian Electoral Commission website.

Approx 68,000 enrolment transactions received yesterday compared to an average daily intake of 4,000. Majority address updates #auspol

— AEC (@AusElectoralCom) August 11, 2017When must I be on the electoralroll to take part in the vote?You must be registered before 6pm on August 24 to participate.

When will I get to vote?Your ballot papers could arrive as early as September 12.

For your vote to be counted, you have until November 7 to post it back. A result would be returned by November 15.

Read more: Same-sex couples talk marriage equality

Is voting compulsory?Unlike at elections, where you are legally obliged to vote, you are not required to participate in the marriage survey.

What happens next?A majority of votes in favour of same-sex marriage is not enough to legislate it.

If the postal survey finds more than half of participants in favour, then MPs would be granted a free vote on a same-sex marriage bill. It is expected such a bill would pass both houses or parliament and become law.

But one of the controversial parts of the postal vote is that MPs will not be bound to vote according to its result.

Read more:Bishop calls for respectful debate

Several MPs have already indicated they would still vote against same-sex marriage even if a majority “yes” vote was returned.

Others have said they will respect the will of the majority of Australians.

If the people vote “no” in the postal ballot, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has indicated no bill would be put before the parliament.

‘I’m so sorry I couldn’t help’

‘I’m so sorry I couldn’t help’ TRIBUTE: Carolyn Young’s message to the late man, left at the scene of the collision.
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Police on the scene

ASSISTANCE: Carolyn Young, pictured with paramedics at the scene of the crash in the Chiltern Valley on Thursday, tried in vain to rescue the car crash victim from his vehicle.

TweetFacebookA GOOD Samaritan who tried in vain to save a person from a burning car wreck has written a heartfelt tribute to the late man.

TRIBUTE: Carolyn Young’s message to the late man, left at the scene of the collision.

Despite her efforts at the crash scene on Thursday, Carolyn Young wishes there was more she could have done to help him in his final moments.

“I don’t know your name, but I was beside you at the end,” she wrote on a card, which she placed on the side of the Chiltern Valley Road with flowers on Friday.

“You weren’t alone but I couldn’t help you.

ASSISTANCE: Carolyn Young, pictured with paramedics at the scene of the crash in the Chiltern Valley on Thursday, tried in vain to rescue the car crash victim from his vehicle.

“I’m so sorry.”

The man, who has not yet been formally identified, died at the scene after crashing his vehicle into a tree about about 3.15pm.

The car rolled and the driver was trapped as fuel leaked from the vehicle.

Ms Young touched the man and spoke to him, and tried to comfort him, but had to be dragged back by another person as the flames took hold of the car.

“I thought it was someone’s son, or father, or brother,” she said.

Police on the scene

“I just did what I could to help.

“At the time I felt so helpless that I couldn’t do anything, even though Itried.

“I’d like to think someone would do the same for me if they were first on the scene.”

Ms Young travelled into town to buy flowers and the card and placed them on the tree the vehicle struck.

Debris from the vehicle was strewn through the area.

She said there had been an “explosion” when the vehicle crashed, followed by a plume of dust.

Ms Young did not get a reaction from the victim after the crash, and hopes he was unconscious or had already passed away when the fire took hold.

“It was like a bomb going off,” she said.

“At least I tried to help.”

The road was closed for several hours after the collision.

People have paid tribute to the man online.

“So sad to hearthis,” onefriend said.

“You were taken too soon.”

Another friend said he was “gone but never forgotten”.

Police are still investigating the cause of the crash.

The driver’s vehicle appeared to have traveled into dirt on the wrong side of the road before veering back towards the left and hitting the large tree.

The fire burnt for between 20 minutes and half-an-hour before firefighters could extinguish the flames.

Police will prepare abrief for the coroner.

One Nation candidate for Logan was a Hells Angel

Pauline Hanson’s One Nation candidate for Logan, Scott Bannan. Photo: Joshua PatersonOne Nation has preselected a former Hells Angel bikieto contest the seat of Logan in the upcoming Queensland state election.
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Scott Bannan, who wasalso a former world kickboxing champion, was amember of the outlaw motorcycle club 10 years ago.

The Queensland leader of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation, Steve Dickson, told ABC radio Mr Bannan had been upfront about his history.

“He’s one of those top blokes and he came clean straight away,” Mr Dickson said.

“He’s never been charged with anything.The guy’s as straight as the days come.”

Mr Dickson said he had confidence in the “family man”, who had “huge businesses” in the Logan area.

“I think the Labor candidate is absolutely terrified he’s running,” Mr Dickson said.

Mr Dickson toldFairfax Media Mr Bannan’sHells Angels membership was “old news”.

“Thorough background checks are conducted on all candidates to ensure they have no criminal record,” he said in a statement.

“Scott is an upstanding member of his community. He is family man who runs a successful local business and he would make an outstanding representative for the people of Logan.”

Mr Bannan was announced as the One Nation candidate for Logan in June.

He told Fairfax Media’sJimboomba Timeshis lack of political experience was a boon for locals.

“The fact is I’m from the real world, I’m not a career politician, I’ve had to juggle bills, support my family with my bare hands,” he said.

Speaking about his year-long membership in the Hells Angels, Mr Bannan said he was not concerned it would affect his chances at the polls.

“I understand that some think just because you were in a club you’re a criminal; I have no criminal record and zero criminal history,” he said.

“I’ve been warned about how nasty the other two main parties get digging up anything they can find, my mates are all having bets on what headlines they can come up with, but I’m a big boy, I can handle it.”

When asked about Mr Bannan’sbikie link, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said voters would probably disapprove.

“You’d have to ask them (One Nation)but I don’t think the public down there would find that acceptable,” she said.

Opposition leader Tim Nicholls said voters should not vote for any One Nation candidate.

“I’ll leave that up to the voters of Logan,” he said.

“I’ll simply say in relation to One Nation, if you vote for One Nation you’re simply going to get a Labor party government that is going to do nothing for the next three years all over again.”

Compulsory preferential voting will be in place at the next state election and there has been no indication One Nation will direct preferences to the Labor government.

– with AAP

Speed limits above 110km/h? It could be on the cards

An LNP government would review the speed limits on 100 Queensland roads. Photo: Glen McCurtayneSpeed limits would be reviewed on 100 Queensland roads under an LNP government, which could look at increasing the top speed above 110km/h.
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A Labor government minister hit back at the promise, labelling it a “thought bubble” that could cost lives.

The LNP would be open to increasing speed limits above 110km/h, but the review would consider safety advice frompolice and traffic engineers, individual road conditions and grading.

Many Queensland roads may not pass the safety test to increase above 110km/h.

The speed limits of arterial roadsand stretches where the speed limit frequently changes up and down arbitrarily would be targeted.

Mr Nicholls said congestion cost motorists time and the economy money.

“Having fit-for-purpose speed limits will helpalleviate congestion and get Queenslanders home sooner,” he said.

“It’s been a long time since speed limits on many of our roads have been thoroughly reviewed.”

When in government, theLNP’s$350 million road safety action plan included a review of speed limits on100 roads.

Environment Minister Steven Miles criticised the proposal on Saturday.

“The biggest cause of congestion isn’t the need to go faster, it’s the need to stop crashes,” he said, on Twitter.

“Increasing speeds to 120 or 130 won’t help congestion. Typical LNP. Arrogant, ignore research, release thought bubble.

“This one could cost lives.”

The previous review led to the Leichhardt, Carnarvon and Warrego highways increasing from 100km/h to 110km/h andreducing the speed on the Scenic Highway between Yeppoon and Emu Park Road to make the hilly route safer.

Speed limits were increased on Waterworks Road at Red Hill, Ashgrove and The Gap; Beenleigh-Redland Bay Road and Narangba Road.

Opposition main roads spokesman Andrew Powell said the LNP would ensure police and road safety engineers assessed the speed limits on shortlisted roads to protect community safety.

“Queenslanders will be encouraged to nominate speed limits for review because they are the ones who drive these roads every day,” Mr Powell said.

“Depending on the outcome of the review, a road’s speed limit can either increase, decrease or stay the same.”

Mr Powell said in some cases, a stretch of road may increase and decrease to create a standard limit.

The next election is due by May, but there is speculation is could be held later this year.

Saturday Scoreboard

Winners are grinners: Merewether celebrate their dramatic last-second 34-33 win over Lake Macquarie at Walters Park. Picture: Jonathan CarrollNHRUMerewether scored three tries in the final eight minutes to pip Lake Macquarie 34-33 at Walters Park to claim outright fifth place and poll position in the race to the finals.
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Wanderers bounced back from their loss to Southern Beaches to beat The Waratahs 40-30 after leading 23-6 at the break.

Southern Beachesclaimed a second straight major scalp, coming from 14-7 down to overpower Hamilton 32-14 at Passmore Oval.

In a bigger upset, University produced their best performance of the season to storm past Maitland 28-13 at Uni. No.1 Oval.

Nelson Bay ended a five game losing streak with a 60-14triumph over Singleton at Rugby Park.

Newcastle RLPremiers South Newcastle ran roughshodover Cessnock 52-12 in a catch-up game at Townson Oval to all but a seal a berth in the top five.

Black Diamond AFLNelson Bay overcame a determined Killarney Vale 16.15-111 to 7.7-49at Adelaide Street to secure fourth spot and a place in the finals.

The Marlin’s win ended any hope of Warners Bay featuring in the post season. The Bulldogs went down anyway to an under-manned Newcastle City 9.13-67 to 7.6-48 at Feighan Park.

Cardiff earned a psychological advantage over Terrigal Avoca before their major semi-final clash with a 14.5-89 to 10.11-71 win at Hillsborough Oval.

Northern NSW NPLLambton Jaffas came from 2-0 down to win 4-2over the Newcastle Hets youth team at Edden Oval and wrap up third place.

In the late game, Broadmeadow Magic play Hamilton Olympic at Darling Street.

Herald Women’s Premier LeagueMerewether are the first team through to the 2017 Herald Women’s Premier League Grand final after downing Adamstown 4-0 at Myamblah Oval on Saturday in the second leg of their home-and-away semi-final.

United finished 6-1 up across the two legs after winning 2-1 in the first leg at Adamstown Oval on August 6.

Merewether took a 1-0 lead on Saturday around the 15th minute when set-piece specialist Jamee Ellis scored from a corner kick.

Newcastle Open Netball ChampionshipsBNC kept their title hopes alive with a 45-36 triumphover a depleted Forsythes at National Park. BNC will meet the loser of next week’s major semi-final between minor premiers Wests Leagues and Souths Lions.

Marriage survey could exclude 100,000 voters

The unprecedented national survey has caused a few headaches for the government and the ABS. Photo: Edwina PicklesThe Turnbull government was scrambling on Friday afternoon to determine whether a loophole in its same-sex marriage survey would disenfranchise about 113,000 “silent electors”.
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They were also forced to work out whether16- and 17-year-olds could accidentally be included in the survey, but ruled this out late on Friday.

The unprecedented $122 million optional poll, now the subject of a High Court challenge to proceed over the coming four weeks,has caused a number of headaches for the government and its agencies.

It relies on the Australian Electoral Commission sharing the electoral roll withthe Australian Bureau of Statistics, which is legal. However, the law expressly forbids the divulgence of the addresses of silent electors.

Those typically include MPs (and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten is one), judges and victims of crime who do not want to appear on the roll for privacy reasons. The Parliamentary Library said there were 113,000 such voters as of 2016.

Acting Special Minister of State Mathias Cormann,who earlier in theweekwasconfident ballot papers would be sent to silent electors, released a statement on Friday saying that this remained the government’s intention.

Acting Special Minister of State Mathias Cormann Photo: Andrew Meares

“Our commitment is for all Australians on the electoral roll,including silent electors, to have the opportunity to have their say on whether or not the law should be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry,” he said.

AEC spokesman Evan Ekin-Smyth said: “The AEC is working with the ABS regarding this issue. Relevant advice will be provided when available.”

Meanwhile in the High Court,chief justice Susan Kiefel said the full court would hear an urgent challenge to the validity of the postal voteon September 5 and 6. The hearing is expected to take one-and-a-half days.

The court heard an injunction to stop the postal vote going ahead before the hearing was not required because the ABS has agreed not to take steps to conduct the poll before September 12.

Two challenges to the validity of the vote have been lodged – one headed by Tasmanian MP Andrew Wilkie and the other by national organisation Australian Marriage Equality.

At a directions hearing on Friday, the court heard there is a significant degree of overlap between the two cases.

The Australian MarriageEquality challenge is confined to two legal issues about the validity of the manner in which the government authorised the expenditure of money to conduct the vote.

The $122 million for the survey was not authorised by an Act of Parliament but was provided to the ABS by way of an advance from Senator Cormann, who is also the Finance Minister, under the Appropriation Act. An advance to the Finance Minister may be made if there is an “urgent need” for the funds and it was “unforeseen”.

An issue in the case will be whether the expenditure was “unforeseen”. A directions hearing will be heard on August 16, which is expected to narrow the issues.

The government was also seeking advice on Friday about whether a legal loophole in the postal survey would accidentally allow 16-year-olds to vote.

A direction given by the Treasurer Scott Morrison to the ABS declared that anyone who made “a valid application for enrolment” on theroll before August 24 would be eligible to participate in the survey. People aged 16 and 17 can make a “claim for enrolment” but are not able to vote in elections.

Senator Cormannlate on Friday dismissed speculation the loophole would give 16-year-olds the vote. “The survey instruments will be sent to those who are on the roll; 16- and 17-year-olds are not on the roll,” he said.

Also on Friday, the Equality Campaign officially launched its bid for a “yes” vote, and signed up former ALP national secretary Tim Gartrell as campaign director.

Executive director Tiernan Brady said the postal vote was a “terrible, terrible process” but “we have a duty to prepare”, and encouraged potential voters to enrol and check their address details.

“There are only 12 days left for people to enrol to vote,” he said

“This is specifically important for young people because we need them to enrol to vote so they can defend their friends if we have to have this vote.”

– with AmyRemeikis

Friday action at the Mount Isa RodeoPhotos

Friday action at the Mount Isa Rodeo | Photos Makaela Ryder, Jason and Robert Reid and Blair Curtin from Kununurra WA
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Natalie Littler and Sandra Voll.

Lucas and Jack McKenzie from Blackwater.

Volunteers Vanya Foster and Nadene Hardie.

Gordon Penrose and Shad Walladge.

People used the new rodeo banks for the cashless bars.

Lyn and Dick Branson from Toowoomba.

Lily Clewett and Roxanne Ellis.

Aleisha O’Dell in the ladies barrels.

Mick Kidner team roping.

Jace Land.

Darcy Kersh and Riley Gibb.

Terry Evison in the Rope and Tie.

Stacey Henderson in the junior barrels.

Jackson Dixson.

Halana Haber.

Emma Quilty and Lily Clewett.

Russell and Tricia McIntosh and Rhonda and Ross Clark.

Cameron Hodgson in the steer wrestling.

Luke Ford.

Ritchie Morrow.

Haami Boynton.

Darcy Harrison in Div 2 bulls.

Tristan Braden.

Lucas McKenzie.

Eli Donovan.

Malcolm Woodard.

Brumby Brandenberg.

Montana O’Toole in the barrels.

Young determined lady in the barrels.

Maisie Hetherington.

Maddix Lovett.

Samuel Agius in the bulls.

Lleyton Marsh.

Kristie Moore, ladies breakaway roping.

Col Wilkie and Haylee Bodgorski, Brisbane.

Emmalee O’Hara and Cassandra Kack.

Bulldust perform on the main stage.

“Pauline Hanson” in the superhero broncs.

Kangaroo at the hop.

Buzz Skywalker comes to ground.

Flash in the pan.

Pauline rides again.

Superheroes seek victory by acclamation.

Cowboy Ben Wickham.

Comedy clown Hollywood Harris

Healy P&C get their Isa street parade award.

The bride in the Op Shop barrel race.

Op Shop barrel race.

Flash the winner of the Superhero ride.

Go faster stripes.

Top five in the op shop barrel race.

Kalkatunga dancer.

Kalkatunga dancers.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk speaks.

Doomadgee dancers.

Mount Isa School of Dance.

Opening ceremony.

Mayor Joyce McCulloch with Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.

Hollywood Harris clowning around with the crowd.

Rodeo Queen Moz Miller with Miss Rodeo Australia Emma Deicke.

TweetFacebookKalkatunga welcome to country dance #isarodeopic.twitter南京夜网/0GZtXvOORL

— Derek Barry (@derekbarry) August 11, 2017

Residents of Martin Place’s tent city start packing up

Residents of the Martin Place tent city embrace before packing up. Photo: Daniel MunozThe residents of the controversial tent city in Martin Place prepared to leave the site on Friday morning, following months of negotiations between the state government and the City of Sydney council.
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After more than six months camped outside the Reserve Bank building at the eastern end of Martin Place, the homeless community started moving on about 9am,after achange in legislationthat would have resulted in them being forced out.

The man dubbed the “Mayor of Martin Place”, Lanz Priestly, said some camp dwellers were moving to “friend’s places” or “friend’s backyards”.

“There are some of the people who are from here who don’t have anywhere to go,” he said.

Lanz Priestley in Martin Place in January. Photo: Daniel Munoz

Sydney lord mayor Clover Moore had tried to reach a deal with MrPriestly, but the arrangement collapsed on Monday, leading to the legislative change.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced on Tuesday that the state government would change the law to give police the power to move people on if it was determined that they were engaged in “unauthorised activity that compromises public safety”.

The legislation, which was passed on Thursday, affects only Crown land within the City of Sydney, and does not extend to other councils.

“I don’t know what’s going to happen next,” he said.

“A lot of people are traumatised by what’s going on.”

Tony, who said he’d been homeless for 12 months, described the Martin Place camp as a “safe space” which has been part of his “healing process”.

The residents of Martin Place’s tent city prepare to move on. Photo: Daniel Munoz

NSW Police are monitoring the exodus, which has remained peaceful.

Residents of Martin Place’s tent city start packing up Residents of the Martin Place tent city embrace before packing up. Photo: Daniel Munoz

Lanz Priestley in Martin Place in January. Photo: Daniel Munoz

The residents of Martin Place’s tent city prepare to move on. Photo: Daniel Munoz

People move tents at Tent City in Martin Place on August 11, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. Picture: Daniel Munoz/Fairfax Media

A homeless woman sits next to a piano in Tent city at Martin Place on August 11, 2017 in Sydney

TweetFacebookThe state government has previously said offers of accommodation had been extended to members of the homeless community but had been refused.

Community members have responded that theaccommodation being offered is not safe nor affordableand called for better homelessness services.

Ms Berejiklian described the new law as a “course of action which I wish I did not have to take” but said it was necessary due to the stalemate with the City of Sydney.

With AAP