Big weekend at motocross open

Written by admin on 09/07/2018 Categories: 南京夜网

Big weekend at motocross open A Grade and B Grade riders line up for the start of the Senior Lites race. Picture: Amy Paton

Geelong rider Layla Norton builds up speed. Picture: Amy Paton

Geelong rider Aaron Murphy at his highest point. Picture: Amy Paton

The start of the A grade and B grade Senior Lites race. Picture: Amy Paton

Horsham rider Bailey Thomas jumps the highest part of the course. Picture: Amy Paton

Horsham rider Cory Watts gives a wave as he speeds by. Picture: Amy Paton

Geelong rider Peter Kearney followed by Blue Rock MCC rider Hayden Joyce. Picture: Amy Paton

Bendigo rider Toby Frisch. Picture: Amy Paton

Bacchus Marsh rider Jordan Brown. Picture: Amy Paton

A rider passes over a peak in the course. Picture: Amy Paton

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DNA in rape cold case links Perth man to New Zealand attacks

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A police image compiled from descriptions of a serial rapist operating in Hamilton in 2007. Photo: Supplied A woman who was raped by Hamilton’s serial rapist revisits the scene near the main street. Photo: Iain McGregor/Fairfax NZ

The press conference about the 2007 serial rapist case will be held at the Hamilton Central Police Station. Photo: Bruce Mercer/Fairfax NZ

Police have linked a man found dead in Perth with the rape of at least three women in New Zealand in 2007.

Details of the breakthrough were revealed by Detective Inspector Chris Page during a press conference in Hamilton on Wednesday.

The offender left New Zealand in 2008 at the age of 28, Page said. He had been working as a bouncer at a Hamilton bar. He was identified through DNA lodged through Interpol in 2015, which was matched to the body found in Perth.

It is only the DNA evidence that relates the man to the investigation into the 2007 serial rapist case, which Hamilton police dubbed Operation Phil. Page said that in May 2013, the same man was arrested in Australia for a non-sexual minor offence.  It was at that point DNA was taken.

The man died in non-suspicious circumstances in July 2013 – weeks after his DNA was taken – and police would not be releasing his name. However, they did say the Operation Phil file would be closed.

Operation Phil was investigating the rapes in 2007 of three women in Hamilton in as many months, all tied to the same offender.

On Wednesday morning, one of the three victims said a detective had informed her the suspect had been found dead by his own hand in Australia.

She spoke out six months after the 2007 attack in an effort to shed new light on the police investigation.

The then 43-year-old from Hamilton said the attack left her traumatised.

She was the third of the man’s alleged victims but unlike the first two, was not coaxed into a car by the young man.

Instead she said she was approached as she sat in the central business district in the early hours of a Saturday morning.

She had been drinking at home and had gone to a 24-hour cafe in the city to buy food and cigarettes when the man sat down beside her in Victoria Street.

“I said to him, do you know where to get any tinnies from? He said, yeah, come with me. He wasn’t scary looking or anything. I wasn’t worried at the time.”

The man, who was in his 20s with shoulder-length blond hair, led the woman behind a building on the river side of the street, where he suddenly demanded she get on her knees.

After sexually violating and raping the woman, he smacked her in the head and punched her in the face.

When the offender finally fled, the woman found a couple who helped her call police from a pay-phone.

In January 2008, he said police had been working through a process of elimination from a list of more than 1000 names since the attacks began in April 2007.

Family background inquiries had gone as far afield as Australia, he said, but no single suspect was believed to have fled across the Tasman.

“I’m confident we will get this guy . . .” he said then, “but it’s going to take time.”


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Malaysian PM Najib Razak’s gift of millions from Saudi Arabia to be probed

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Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has returned almost all the money. Photo: Lai Seng SinNajib got nearly $1bn ‘personal donation’ from Saudis

Bangkok: Saudi Arabia says it will investigate a claim by Malaysia’s Attorney-General that embattled Prime Minister Najib Razak returned US$620 million ($881 million) to Saudi’s royal family from his personal bank account in 2013.

The failure of Saudi authorities to immediately confirm the transfer has deepened mystery about US$700 million that was transferred into Mr Najib’s personal bank account.

Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi said the money was an entirely legal “personal donation” from the Saudi family which asked for nothing in return.

But amid a furore over the escalating scandal that has engulfed Mr Najib his critics said it was implausible the money came as a personal donation.

A spokesperson for the Saudi Foreign Ministry said no further comment would be made at the moment about the claim by Mr Apandi, who said on Tuesday he had ordered the country’s anti-corruption commission to close an investigation into the money transfers.

Saudi Arabia King Abdullah died a year ago.

Mr Najib on Wednesday ignored a barrage of criticism for failing to explain key questions about the money, saying only in a statement the controversy “has been an unnecessary distraction for the country.”

“Now that the matter has been comprehensively put to rest, it is time to unite move on,” he said.

However opposition politicians are demanding to know what happened to US$61 million that, according to Mr Apandi, was not sent back to the Saudi Royal family from Mr Najib’s account.

They also want to know who specifically donated the money, why it was donated and why it took more than six months for the government to say where the money came from.

The Wall Street Journal has reported the money flowed to Mr Najib’s account through an anonymous British Virgin Islands company and a Swiss private bank account wholly owned by an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund that is intertwined with Malaysia’s heavily indebted sovereign fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad, which Mr Najib established in 2009 and still oversees through chairmanship of an advisory committee.

The closest Mr Najib has come to explaining the money came in a statement issued hours after Mr Apandi’s announcement.

“I appreciate that political funding is a topic of concern to many people,” Mr Najib said, adding that opposition MPs had blocked party funding reform proposals he had initiated in 2010.

“I have instructed them to be put forward again for discussion,” he said.

Authorities in the United States and several other countries are continuing to investigate the money transfers and links to the 1Malaysia fund that is struggling to pay US$11 billion in debts and is selling off assets.

Mr Apandi’s announcement, which was greeted with widespread scepticism and derision, has intensified pressure on Mr Najib to resign, including from within the ranks of his long-ruling United Malays National Organisation.

Leading opposition MP Rafizi Ramli said the announcement had only made the situation “more ridiculous” and described the prime minister as a “clown”.

“This can only happen in fairytales,” he said.

National Human Rights Society president Ambiga Sreenevasan said Malaysians were entitled to know the reasons why Mr Apandi has shut down the investigation.

“So far as I can see, the explanation given is not enough because at the end any explanation must make sense and this doesn’t make sense,” she said.

Veteran newspaper editor and commentator A Kadir Jasin said Mr Najib may be safe from prosecution now “but despite the Attorney-General closing the case, the court of public opinion will continue to try him.”

“As for all of us, we have to do some serious soul searching if we care for this country and its future,” he said.

As well asserting that Mr Najib had received the money from the Saudi family, Mr Apandi said there was “no evidence” that the prime minister “had any knowledge” of about US$10 million that was transferred into his accounts from a company owned by the Finance Ministry known as SRC, which handles the savings of Malaysian government employees.

Mr Najib was “of the belief” that any of the money he spent had come from the Saudi royal family, Mr Apandi said.

Mr Apandi was appointed Attorney-General by Mr Najib when the incumbent attorney-general abruptly stepped down after the scandal broke last year.

In October Mr Apandi rejected the recommendations of Malaysia’s central bank to begin criminal proceedings against 1Malaysia Development Berhad for allegedly breaking foreign-exchange laws, saying there was insufficient evidence.

The fund is facing an auditor general’s probe into its affairs.

-With agencies

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Networking – Sunrise to rise earlier

Written by admin on 19/08/2019 Categories: 南京夜网

Even earlier starts for Sunrise’s David Koch and Samantha Armytage.Early riser
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Seven’s morning news and entertainment program Sunrise is to make an earlier start.  From Monday, February 1, it begins  at 5.30am, coming into line with rival Today on Nine. With a new set from renowned American television set designer Jim Fenhagan (Good Morning America and NBC Today), Sunrise will replace Seven Early News, which will move to 5am. Not Good news

Julianna Margulies, star of Ten’s The Good Wife, has hinted the series might soon be ending. The show’s creators, Robert and Michelle King, have confirmed they will leave the drama when the current season ends, then speaking at a recent awards ceremony, Margulies seemed to confirm that once they left, that was it. “I surprised Robert and Michelle tonight,”  Vulture website quoted her as saying. “They didn’t know I was going to be here. They think I’m here for them, but I’m unemployed come April, and I think you haven’t seen me in a while   – at least not in person – so I thought I should show up.” A spokesman from the series later said she was only joking. Who knew

Fans of Doctor Who will have to wait until the end of the year for a return of their hero, with the BBC announcing the only new episode of the series to screen in 2016 will be the next Christmas special, in December. The announcement came with news the current showrunner, Steven Moffatt, would be leaving the iconic program, with his final 12-part series airing in 2017 and introducing a new companion for The Doctor. Moffatt will  be replaced by Broadchurch writer Chris Chibnall from 2018. Snow wonder

The recent American blizzards halted production of several series, caused broadcast blackouts for viewers, but left one group of TV fans delighted, when Arrow (and former Torchwood/Doctor Who) star John Barrowman found himself stranded on his way to a New Jersey science fiction convention and promptly started live-tweeting the incident. For most of last Sunday, the actor posted photographs, video and anecdotes of being stuck in the convention, with fans retweeting  wildly. Sleep overs

Girls executive producer Judd Apatow has confirmed he is to launch Crashing, a half-hour comedy starring comedian Pete Holmes on HBO. The series, which will have both Apatow and Holmes as executive producers, will follow “a sweet, wholesome comedian” who has nowhere to stay after his wife leaves him, and winds up staying on the couches of New York’s finest comics. The series is loosely based on some of Holmes’ experiences. Apatow will direct the series pilot.

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Mark Buddle says Eddie Hayson and another Comanchero gave him the $60,000 cash he didn’t declare

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Mark Buddle leaves Newcastle Local Court. Photo: Dan ProudmanJust five days after finishing his latest stint on parole, former Comanchero bikie chief Mark Buddle walked up the steps of a privately chartered plane at Essendon Airport, en route for a South Pacific getaway with long-time love, Mel Ter Wisscha.
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But just before the twin engines began to kick over, Buddle asked the general manager of the aircraft’s operator what should he do about the cash he had stored in his luggage.

The once-national president of the Comanchero bikie gang was told to declare it to Customs.

Whether Buddle ever revealed how much the “significant amount” was is unclear. But stuffed between the swimmers, towels and bags sat $60,120 in cash.

The flight stopped at Newcastle Airport at 9.20am on July 28 en route to New Caledonia, and Australian Border Force officials were only told about the wads of cash when authorities indicated they would be inspecting their belongings.

Buddle and Ter Wisscha pleaded guilty in Newcastle Local Court on Wednesday on the Commonwealth charge of attempting to move $10,000 or more out of Australia without a report.

In doing so, prosecutors dropped a charge against Buddle of dealing in the proceeds of crime.

His barrister Avni Djemal, told magistrate Robert Stone that it was an oversight and the breach was only for a “small period of time”. It’s understood Buddle’s girlfriend had filled out the cards as he cannot read or write.

Mr Djemal said the money had been a gift – he had previously told the court that Buddle was rewarded for successfully completing rehabilitation for drug and alcohol problems – and there was no evidence offered that it was to be used illegally or “nefariously”.

It is understood Buddle told authorities the money was gifted to him by brothel owner Eddie Hayson and another high-ranking Comanchero, Ali Bazzi.

Mr Hayson did not answer questions about the gift when asked by Fairfax Media on Wednesday.

Mr Djemal argued in court that if Buddle had been attempting to move the money out of Australia by stealth, he would not have had the conversation at Essendon airport.

“If you are of the inclination of trying to get money out of the country surreptitiously, you would never open up the bag to [the plane company manager] and say ‘I have cash, what do I do with it?’,” Mr Djemal said.

He later added: “The money is not from illegal means and there is no evidence it was going to any illegal venture at all.”

Magistrate Robert Stone didn’t send Buddle back to jail, but he questioned why so much money was needed for a holiday.

“No satisfactory explanation has been provided as to why that amount of money had to be taken out of the country in the way that it was,” Mr Stone said.

Mr Stone ordered that the now-married couple have their passports returned, although the cash remains in the hands of authorities because of an “ongoing investigation”.

He sentenced Buddle to two months’ jail, although the couple left court on good behaviour bonds and $2000 each in fines after the eight weeks Buddle had spent behind bars on remand were taken into account.

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How well are new refugees settling into Australia?

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Youssef Darwish, a Syrian refugee, has been living in Sydney for more than a year. Photo: Janie BarrettSince arriving in Australia 16 months ago, Syrian refugee Youssef Darwish has learned English and is studying for a qualification in furniture removal and warehousing.
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He is among 70 per cent of refugees who are either working or studying to gain English language or other employment skills. He is also among the majority of new migrants who have found Australia a friendly place to live.

Just 5 per cent complain of having experienced racial discrimination here.

But three-quarters of recently arrived migrants on humanitarian visas have struggled to find secure housing, according to a landmark national study to be released on Thursday.

The Australian Institute of Family Studies research, the first of its kind in 10 years, surveyed 2400 “humanitarian migrants” who had arrived in Australia from 35 countries including the Middle East and Africa, within the past five years. They ranged in age from 15 to 80.

The research found 75 per cent had difficulties obtaining housing mainly because of the cost, lack of references and language difficulties. One-third had moved house multiple times. Almost half reported their existing housing was temporary or leased for six months or less.

Mr Darwish, 25, used his new English language skills to find housing in Condell Park where he lives with his mother and father, who also migrated to Australia after the family spent two years in Egypt.

“I saw houses on the internet and made appointments and talked to an agent,” Mr Darwish said. Like many of the migrants surveyed, Mr Darwish and his parents had witnessed conflict in their home-city, Aleppo.

The study found 13 per cent reported poor physical health and 75 per cent were at risk of psychological distress.

The vast majority, 89 per cent, of the recent arrivals had experienced at least one traumatic event, including war and persecution, before arriving in Australia.

Iranian-born Mohammad Javidkia was jailed in Georgia for six months after travelling on a fake passport.

After arriving in Australia in May 2013, he met the woman he later married in Curtin Detention Centre in Western Australia.

The couple, who now live in Sydney, had their first child on December 24 and named her Evie, because she was born on Christmas “eve”.

Mr Javidkia also obtained a bridging visa at Christmas and is now seeking work.

Director of the Australian Institute of Family Studies, Anne Hollonds, said housing was an issue in many parts of Australia, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne.

“These people are more vulnerable than most because of their circumstances,” she said. “It is difficult for governments to help with that when there is such pressure all round.”

Ms Hollonds said the small proportion of refugees reporting discrimination was a welcome finding.

But the high proportion of new arrivals at risk of mental illness was troubling.

“Being able to engage in study and employment and learning English will be harder if you are dealing with trauma in your life,” she said.

“The good news is that we know about it. What we need to do is ensure that our service systems are working in a co-ordinated way to provide support for people.”

Ms Hollonds said the research findings were particularly important to help meet the needs of refugees, particularly new intakes from Syria. Education and Employment:

• 70 per cent of new arrivals are either working or studying, mainly English language.

• 7 per cent of migrants were employed Housing:

• 40 per cent said it was ‘hard’ and 35 per cent said it was ‘very hard’ to find housing, mainly due to the cost, language difficulties or not having references.

• About one-third had moved house multiple times.

• Almost half reported their current housing was temporary or a lease of six months or less. Health and life satisfaction:

• 13 per cent said their physical health was ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’.

• 89 per cent reported they or their immediate family had experienced at least one type of traumatic event prior to arrival.

• 35 per cent of men and 45 per cent of women were at moderate or high risk of psychological distress compared to 7 per cent of men and 11 per cent of women in the general population.

• About one quarter said they were experiencing many problems and/or ‘not coping well’. Family:

• About half reported having had family in Australia when they arrived and 24 per cent had friends from where they used to live.

• Around half of the migrants were waiting to reunite with family currently in another country. Sense of Belonging:

• 80-90 per cent said that so far, their experience of settling into Australia has been ‘good’ or ‘very good’.

• 5 per cent had experienced discrimination usually on the streets, public transport and in local neighbourhoods.

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Public hospital crisis looms

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AMA president Brian Owler says public hospitals are facing a budgetary “black hole”. Photo: Andrew MearesThe federal government is under pressure to reform taxes following a report card on public hospitals that shows the most urgent patients are waiting longer at the emergency departments, bed ratios are deteriorating and elective surgery waiting times are static.
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The Australian Medical Association is using its annual report on the performance of public hospitals to call for an overhaul of health funding, which faces slower growth from July next year when new funding arrangements come into effect.

AMA president Brian Owler said hospitals would be insufficiently funded to meet the rising demand from 2017, when the states and territories were facing a “black hole”.

A Treasury analysis found $57 billion would be removed from the health system over 10 years.

“The issue is that the [funding] increase is not going to be anywhere near the rate of growth that is required to maintain services, let alone see an improvement,” Professor Owler said.

“What we’ve already seen in this report card is that the focus has come off the elective surgery and emergency access targets and we’ve seen performance fall.

“The states and territories are facing a public hospital funding black hole from 2017, when growth in federal funding slows to a trickle.”

The federal government has abandoned funding guarantees that were made under the National Health Reform Agreement in 2011, and from July next year it will limit funding increases to population growth and indexation.

The AMA report card shows the proportion of urgent patients seen within 30 minutes of presentation at the emergency department slipped to 68 per cent in 2014-15 after six previous years of steady improvement.

Across all emergency patients, 73 per cent were seen within the clinically recommended time of four hours, compared with a national target of 90 per cent to be seen within this time.

The median waiting time for elective surgery in 2014-15 was reduced by one day to 35 days, the same as it was in 2009-10.

Meanwhile, the bed ratio drifted to its lowest level in 2013-14, with 2.51 beds for every 1000 people aged over 65.

NSW has plateaued against most measures. Victoria’s emergency department performance has remained static but its elective surgery waiting times have improved. Queensland is is facing longer emergency department waiting times, but shorter waits for elective surgery.

But the smaller states – Tasmania, SA, the Northern Territory and the ACT – have struggled to meet their performance targets.

“We know that public hospitals are facing growing demand, particularly in the emergency departments, where patients in the highest triage category are making up the majority of the numbers,” Professor Owler said.

It was not for the AMA to recommend whether increased funding should be achieved by an increase to the GST or a rise in the Medicare levy.

“But any change in the taxation policy should not just be used to give income tax cuts, as the Treasurer has suggested.”

NSW Premier Mike Baird has called for the GST to be lifted to 15 per cent for the health system to survive, warning that the state risked “tumbling off a fiscal cliff”.

Health Minister Sussan Ley declined to answer questions on the extent to which changes to the health budget affected hospital performance or whether future funding should take into account the growing burden of chronic disease.

“Hospital spending under the Turnbull government increases each and every year and there were no policy changes in the 2015-16 Budget or MYEFO which affect this,” she said instead.

“Commonwealth public hospital funding continues to grow over the next four years, with an increase of $3.3 billion or around 21.5 per cent.”

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2016: The television year ahead

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One of 2016’s most intriguing offerings, Cleverman. Photo: ABCEmbracing the world stage – finally
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Love, crime and politics … where would television’s narrative be without those three vital ingredients? Despite the tendency to imagine television is a realm of ever-diminishing returns for the audience, this year looks promising.

Even the commercial networks, whose slates are typically the least thrilling, have dished up a few things which are rich in promise. On cable, and in streaming, where there is more room for bold ideas to breathe, it looks even more interesting.

There are some very ambitious ideas, including the brilliant Cleverman, which meshes indigenous mythology with the kind of genre-spinning television you expect from Britain or the United States. And some simply brilliant ones, such as the Luhrmann-Martin Netflix drama The Get Down.

Revealingly too, it seems often the best ideas are both the simplest and the truest. Former prime minister John Howard’s exploration of the Menzies legacy is already one of the buzziest programs of the year. Ditto American Crime Story, which is tackling the trial of O. J. Simpson. Please note: no producers were killed in the compilation of this story. Oh, and there are no dating shows in it. Not a single one. You’re welcome. SIX OF THE BEST

Brock (Ten)

What is it? A telemovie biography of one of Australia’s most successful race car drivers, Sandown 500, Australian Touring Car and Bathurst 24 Hour champion Peter Brock, who died in 2006.

Star factor: Matthew Le Nevez as Brock, Ella Scott Lynch as his wife Bev, plus Brendan Cowell, Natalie Bassingthwaighte, Nadia Townsend and Steve Bisley.

Why it’s a gonna be huge: Brock’s life is a largely untold story, packaged in a genre where Ten has proven form.

Cleverman (ABC)

What is it? A thriller set in the near future about a species from ancient mythology who live among us, but must “battle for survival in a world that wants to silence, exploit and destroy them”.

Star factor: Game of Thrones actor Iain Glen, plus Frances O’Connor, Deborah Mailman and Hunter Page-Lochard, plus directors Wayne Blair and Leah Purcell.

Why it’s a gonna be huge: It’s a sharp, high-concept genre drama from two brilliant production companies, Goalpost and Pukeko, which is easily the equal of anything from overseas.

The Get Down (Netflix)

What is it? A “mythic saga of how New York at the brink of bankruptcy gave birth to hip-hop, punk and disco, told through the lives and music of the South Bronx kids who changed the city, and the world”.

Star factor: Australian director Baz Luhrmann, Academy-Award winner Catherine Martin, writer Stephen Adly Guirgis and hip-hop pioneers Grandmaster Flash, DJ Kool Herc, and Afrika Bambaataa.

Why it’s a gonna be huge: The genius of the Luhrmann-Martin partnership, the creative freedom (and track record) of streamcaster Netflix and a kickass soundtrack.

Howard on Menzies (ABC)

What is it? Australia’s second longest-serving prime minister John Howard explores the life and legacy of its first, “our most successful and influential political leader”, Robert Menzies.

Star factor: Howard as host and interviewer, plus an all-star line-up of conversation subjects, including former prime minister Bob Hawke, media mogul Rupert Murdoch and comedian Barry Humphries.

Why it’s a gonna be huge: It’s a relatively simple idea, approached in an original way, with a most unlikely TV host as guide, and executed on the grandest of scales.

Secret City (Showcase)

What is it: A political thriller based on the novels The Mandarin Code and The Marmalade Files by journalists Chris Uhlmann and Steve Lewis.

Star factor: A top-notch cast, including Anna Torv, Damon Herriman, Dan Wyllie, Mekhi Phifer, Miranda Tapsell, Jacki Weaver, Alex Dimitriades and Alan Dale.

Why it’s a gonna be huge: Ripper cast, plus a top-notch writing team which includes Kris Mrksa, Belinda Chayko, Matt Cameron, Marieke Hardy and Greg Waters.

Wolf Creek (Stan)

What is it: A spin-off from the hit Wolf Creek movies, the series follows an American tourist who escapes the clutches of killer Mick Taylor and embarks on a mission to take revenge.

Star factor: John Jarratt, who played the serial killer Mick Taylor in two Wolf Creek films in 2005 and 2013, returns to star in the spin-off series.

Why it’s a gonna be huge: The original film was a global smash, pulling almost $US30 million in box office.

In sitcom Here come the Habibs, a Lebanese-Australian family moves to Vaucluse. AND THE A-Z OF THE REST

American Crime Story, The People vs O. J. Simpson (Ten)

An all-star cast, including John Travolta, Cuba Gooding jnr and David Schwimmer, bring to life the now infamous trial of footballer-turned-actor O. J. Simpson.

Australian Survivor (Ten)

Though its first iteration was not a success, the iconic American reality franchise has been exhumed for another go round.

Barracuda (ABC)

A telemovie based on the Christos Tsiolkas novel about a young boy destined to become a swimming superstar. Stars Matt Nable, Rachel Griffiths and Jeremy Lindsay Taylor.

Chelsea Does (Netflix)

A four-part documentary series in which US comedian Chelsea Handler gets up close and personal with four subjects: marriage, racism, Silicon Valley and drugs.

The Crown (Netflix)

Ambitious 10-hour drama about the British royal family, starring Claire Foy as young Princess Elizabeth and former Dr Who star Matt Smith as the future Prince Philip.

Dafuq (ABC iView)

News satire following three “reporters” for a “non-mainstream, cross platform” news program who chase the stories no one else will, and make them all about themselves.

Deep Water (SBS)

An ambitious drama inspired by the gay hate murders in Sydney in the 1980s and 1990s, exploring “the brutal murders, the scores of assaults, the unsolved cold cases”.

Fuller House (Netflix)

Sequel to the ’80s/’90s sitcom Full House, in which D. J. (Candace Cameron-Bure) is now widowed and living in San Francisco with her sister Stephanie and best friend Kimmy.

Hanson: The Years that Shook Australia (SBS)

Documentary exploring the “most divisive politician of the 1990s” Pauline Hanson, “who said what some Australians were thinking and was destroyed for it”.

Here Come The Habibs (Nine)

Comedy about a Lebanese migrant family who strike it rich and move to Australia’s poshest postcode, and into the sights of snooty neighbour Olivia (Helen Dallimore).

Hide & Seek (Nine)

A contemporary crime thriller, from Matchbox Pictures, about police investigators on the trail of a network of potential terrorists who have entered Australia using false passports.

House of Bond (Nine)

The “rags-to-riches-to-rags” story of controversial business tycoon, and one-time Nine Network owner, Alan Bond, whose greed and ambition brought his empire to ruin.

Ice Wars (ABC)

Four-part documentary about the impact of crystal methamphetamine – “ice” – in Australia, from the police and health services, to the toxic waste the drug’s production leaves behind.

The Kettering Incident (Showcase)

A woman, haunted by past events, returns to a small town in Tasmania. Ripper cast includes Kris McQuade, Damon Gameau, Damien Garvey and Sacha Horler.

Love (Netflix)

A modern romantic comedy from Judd Apatow about Gus (Paul Rust) and Mickey (Gillian Jacobs) who “navigate the exhilarations and humiliations of intimacy, commitment and love”.

Lucifer (FX)

British actor Tom Ellis plays Lucifer, who has moved to Los Angeles to indulge in “wine, women and song”. But is the prince of hell a bad guy? Or a good guy? Or something in between?

Molly (Seven)

A two-part mini-series about the life of music journalist Ian “Molly” Meldrum, who came from a humble childhood in Quambatook to become one of Australia’s most influential cultural icons.

Pee-Wee’s Big Holiday (Netflix)

The “fun-loving hero of TV, stage and film” Pee-Wee Herman returns in a television film about his first ever holiday. Great cast includes Paul Reubens, Joe Manganiello and Alia Shawkat.

Primetime Comedy Pilot Season (ABC)

Six comedy pilots, from Eddie Perfect, Kate McCartney and Kate McLennan, Ronny Chieng, Lawrence Mooney, Matt Lovkis and others, which may return as full-blown series.

The Ranch (Netflix)

Ashton Kutcher, Danny Masterson, Sam Elliott and Debra Winger star in a comedy with a somewhat susdy premise, about a failed footballer who returns home to his family’s ranch.

The Rookie (Go!)

The rugby league version of Foxtel’s AFL series The Recruit, this is a reality series which will give an amateur rugby league player a shot at being “drafted” by an NRL club.

Rosehaven (ABC)

Comedy series starring Luke McGregor and Celia Pacquola about a man who returns to his hometown and finds an old friend on his doorstep, on the run from her own marriage.

The Secret Daughter (Seven)

Jessica Mauboy stars as a country pub singer whose life is changed after a chance meeting in a series described as “a contemporary family drama”.

Stranger Things (Netflix)

A drama series from the makers of Wayward Pines about the disappearance of a young boy in the 1980s and the subsequent investigation which unearths terrifying supernatural forces.

Sunday Night Takeaway (Seven)

A local adaptation of the British live studio format Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway, which involves audience games and live music performances.

Top Knot Detective (SBS)

A mockumentary exploring the legacy of the “completely made-up Japanese ’90s SBS hit Ronin Suiri Tentai, or as it’s better known in Australia Top Knot Detective”.

Tutankhamun (SBS)

Sam Neill stars in a four-part drama from the British broadcaster ITV about the “history, romance, intrigue and adventure” of Howard Carter’s discovery of the lost tomb of Tutankhamun.

Vinyl (Showcase)

“A ride through the sex and drug-addled music business at the dawn of punk, disco, and hip-hop” from producer/director Martin Scorsese, writer Terence Winter and co-producer Mick Jagger.

Wanted (Seven)

Rebecca Gibney and Geraldine Hakewill play two women who are “swept up in a roller coaster chase across Australia in a car full of money”; also stars Stephen Peacocke.

War and Peace (BBC First)

An epic adaptation of Tolstoy’s War and Peace, starring Jim Broadbent, Gillian Anderson and Greta Scacchi, from Pride and Prejudice writer Andrew Davies.

Westworld (Showcase)

A reboot for television based on the iconic science fiction film of the same name, this is a “dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin”.

The Wrong Girl (Ten)

A modern romantic comedy about two flatmates who swear off men, until one of them falls in love with a man she meets at work; from House Husbands producers Playmaker Media.

The X-Files (Ten)

David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson return as FBI agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully in a six-hour limited series about a special unit of the FBI which investigates paranormal events.

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Kelly Osbourne hunts for a star on Australia’s Got Talent

Written by admin on 19/07/2019 Categories: 南京夜网

Kelly Osbourne has a laugh during Australia’s Got Talent.The audition stage of a reality series is where the viewing gold is found, but Kelly Osbourne is the first to admit it takes a toll when you’re the judge watching act after act. After act.

“We all went cuckoo,” she says. “We get no sense of time when you’re in the theatre all day long. It was Soph [Sophie Monk] who figured out that after every fourth act we need to go stand outside for two seconds to get fresh air and see light.”

In this latest incarnation of Australia’s Got Talent, the series where woodchoppers, dog acts and leaf-blowers stand alongside the usual singers and dancers, Osbourne is a judge alongside Monk, Eddie Perfect and Ian “Dicko” Dickson, with Dave Hughes steering proceedings as host.

It’s almost as an eclectic bunch on the judging panel as it in on stage, but like the series itself somehow it all works, Osbourne said.

“I’m sorry, I love every single person on that show,” she says. “I know that people are used to having shows like this where the girls hate each other, but it’s not that way at all. We are all really protective of each other. We really get along really well and we just fit right in, it just happened.”

Osbourne is a huge fan of working in Australia – she was out here in late 2014 for a guest appearance on Australia’s Next Top Model. However, she says she did hesitate about taking the AGT gig as “I have a big mouth”.

“I go about everything with the best of intentions and I get misunderstood a lot and I understand that’s because the way I go about it as well. And to go to a country you’re not from, I would never want to be disrespectful to Australia either.”

She said she got advice from her mum, Sharon, a veteran of The Voice and America’s Got Talent, who told her just to be herself. In terms of seeking out the talent, however, she says they’re not necessarily looking for the best, it’s more about who is the most entertaining.

“For me, it’s people who make people smile. People who want to really change the world and make it a better place through what their act is.

“A lot of them were very selfless for the reasons why they wanted to win as well, which I thought was a beautiful thing.

“It wasn’t just about the money, [it was about] sharing their talent and stories.”

Hughes says what was most surprising to him was the dedication of the talent. “What you love about is how every single act was like, ‘Yep, I’m going to make it big, this is the moment’, and just so full-on passionate and nervous.

“It was like bloody everyone’s grand final and I’m backstage like I’m in the changing rooms and the team’s about to run out for the grand final and that would happen about 40 times a session. I loved it.”

He says his job is to be the “friendly port of call” barracking for the talent backstage.

“I’d like to think that I was a friend to everyone pretty much, so I wasn’t too mocky,” he says. “I’m pretty conscious of not trying to make people feel bad, but you can still use a lot of humour even though you’re not outright slagging someone off, there’s still a lot of humour to be had.

“The judges didn’t pull any punches on a number of occasions and I’m like, ‘Oh Jesus, that’s a bit harsh’, but I was basically treating all the contestants like they were my children. I was protective of them.”

He says the worst outcomes for contestants tended to be when animals were involved. “There were people whose animals just wouldn’t perform under the spotlight. The animals had done really well in their loungerooms but put 600 people in front of them and spotlights and cameras, they weren’t happy to perform.”

Animals with stage fright aside, Osbourne says it’s been a hugely enriching experience for her. “Seeing that there’s still people out there that want to make people happy and work really hard at something and don’t expect things to just be given to them.

“And there’s a sense of humour and beauty in what we’re doing. It’s not just [puts on a dramatic voice] finding the next big thing in Hollywood, we’re finding people to make people entertained and smile. We live in a world that’s so depressing right now, we need shows like this.”

What: Australia’s Got Talent

When: Nine, Monday, 7.30pm

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Apple’s clever accounting could conjure up a zero tax bill in 2016

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Apple’s tax position is being challenged by governments around the world as they take a tougher stand against profit-shifting. Photo: Mike Segar Tax Commissioner Chris Jordan questioned Apple’s testimony at the Senate inquiry into corporate tax avoidance. Photo: Christopher Pearce

Apple sells fewer iPhones than expectedWhen $18 billion profit isn’t good enough

Apple has taken advantage of accounting rules in its local business that could allow it to pay virtually no tax in Australia on its profits in 2016.

Apple’s local financial accounts, first reported in Fairfax Media, show $200 million in “deferred tax assets”. This can be used to offset against future profits – if the company makes profits – helping it lower its tax bill.

That amount tallies almost exactly with the before-tax profit of $208 million that the US technology giant reported for 2015 (down from $251.9 million in 2014).

If Apple records a similar profit this year, the deferred asset could virtually wipe its tax bill.

Apple paid nearly $85 million in Australian income tax in 2015 despite making $7.9 billion in local revenue. Its sales revenue was up 29.5 per cent from 2014 when it made $6.1 billion.

The maker of iPhones and iPads acknowledges the benefit in its financial accounts stating that “future taxable profit will allow the deferred tax asset to be utilised”.

But Apple is under audit by the Australian Taxation Office for the level of taxes that it pays, so it may face upward adjustments if the outcome of the audit is in the ATO’s favour and the company decides not to take the matter to court.

Marin Accountants founder and consultant Bernard Marin said Apple simply used this legal accounting trick to minimise tax.

“It means that next year, when they’ve got taxable income, they will be able to reduce it, and pay less tax,” Mr Marin said.

“Companies do this when they get an opportunity to.”

CPA Australia’s head of policy Paul Drum said it was no surprise that a multinational such as Apple was reducing its tax burden.

“They – and many other entities like them – are operating legally and within the boundaries of the current global taxation arrangements,” Mr Drum said.

“At 30 per cent, our company tax rate is just not competitive with Singapore’s 17 per cent, Ireland’s 12.5 per cent or even the UK’s 20 per cent.”

Apple’s managing director of Australia and New Zealand Tony King denied at last year’s Senate inquiry into corporate tax avoidance that the company did not pay its fair share of tax. Testimony challenged

Mr King said Apple Australia bought products such iPads and iPhones from overseas operations and resold them. It then gets taxed on its local profit. This was an appropriate “arm’s length price” for its products, he said.

But Tax Commissioner Chris Jordan has questioned the accuracy of Mr King’s testimony, and said the ATO was, through an audit, contesting whether these affiliate sales were struck at the right price.

Apple’s tax position is being challenged by governments around the world.

In December the company agreed to pay Italy’s tax office €318 million ($477 million) to settle a dispute over allegations it failed to pay taxes for six years.

The Italian subsidiary and several of its senior executives had been under investigation for fraud over the company’s alleged failure to declare its earnings in Italy between 2008 and 2013.

The deal comes as governments, including Australia, take a tougher stand against profit-shifting.

In a bid to stop multinational tax avoidance, the federal government passed legislation in 2015 that boosts the ATO’s anti-avoidance powers and enforces tougher penalties if companies are found to engage in tax avoidance.

The laws came into force on January 1. Mr Jordan said late in 2015, before the laws took hold, that the threat of harsher penalties had resulted in some multinationals negotiating with the ATO on their tax position.

Apple’s accounts also show it is lugging massive inventory in Australia. Its stock of inventories was $198.6 million in 2015 (up from $113.7 million in 2014).

Apple’s profit after tax was $123 million, down from $171.5 million the year before. 

It reduced its taxable profit due to higher sales, marketing and distribution expenses of $435 million and administrative expenses of $30.7 million.

The accounts also show a “management fee income” expense of $80.8 million (up from $58.7 million in 2014), which it offset against profits.

The accounts also note that the ATO is auditing Apple for the 2012 tax year, and the outcome could affect its future bills.

In the 2012 tax year, the company reported a $40 million tax bill, but had earned almost $6 billion revenue.

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Australia expects public servants to work longer hours, agency boss claims

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More public service newsATO workers reject pay deal, bosses get pay rise

Public servants at Australia’s air safety agency have been told to work longer hours, in line with “community expectations”, if they want more money.

Bosses at the Civil Aviation Safety Authority want their public servants at their desks for an extra 45 minutes each week in return for a 2 per cent pay rise.

CASA’s chief executive says the offer is all the agency can afford right now but has assured his 830-strong workforce that their conditions and entitlements are safe.

The new proposal at CASA comes as the massive Defence Department moves closer to a vote of its 20,000 public servants on a new wage deal and the Australian Taxation Office prepare for fresh negotiations in the wake of the crushing defeat of a proposed enterprise agreement

CASA’s Chief Executive Mark Skidmore told the authority’s staff last month that the authority is so short of money, it had to approach the wage talks with an eye to its future financial viability.

“You are also aware that CASA is operating in an extremely challenging budgetary situation and we have been required to address this in the context of the EA remuneration affordability so that CASA has a sustainable future,” Mr Skidmore wrote to his workers

“…to make this work, this new offer does include a small increase in working hours.

“It is proposed that we increase our working hours by 9 minutes a day from 7 hours and 21 minutes to 7 hours 30 minutes daily.”

Mr Skidmore said the proposed new hours, which would begin in 2018, the last year of the three-year agreement, would bring CASA into line with the rest of the public service and with “community expectations”.

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The chief executive said the extra work was the only change to entitlements in the proposed EA and that the offer did not come at the price of job cuts, as had been proposed to fund offers to other departments and agencies.

But technical union Professionals Australia says its members at CASA, where workers have not had a pay rise since mid-2013, are unimpressed with the proposed deal, saying the agency was trying to “get blood out of a stone”.

“Members don’t think this is anywhere near a fair pay offer with no comprehension of government-caused delays and a clear move to sever the link between the agreement and relevant employment policies making such conditions close to unenforceable and easier to change,” union official Dave Smith said.

“If CASA’s capacity to have a sustainable workforce is threatened then the Australian community should be concerned and the Government should ensure they are funded appropriately.

“They shouldn’t have to rely on getting 9 minutes a day more blood out of the stone.”

Meantime, the Defence Department looks set to go to a vote in February or March on its new enterprise agreement with workplace unions reporting little progress in trying to tweak key aspects of the proposed agreement.

The tax office will sit down again with unions on Monday to try to pick up the pieces after the 85 to 15 per cent defeat of its wage proposal.

Initial progress is expected to be slow with the ATO understood to want a survey of its employees carried out, to determine the reasons behind December’s crushing no vote, before it puts together a fresh proposal.

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Universities defend standards but condemn imperfect ATARs

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The ANU says its system of publishing guaranteed ATAR cut-offs is one of the most transparent in the country. Photo: FairfaxUniversity chiefs are publicly condemning the ATAR university admissions system, after a Fairfax Media investigation revealed that a policy of admitting sub-standard students was rampant throughout the sector.

Both the ANU and UC have criticised the ATAR as an “imperfect” measure of student ability, while University of NSW chancellor Professor Ian Jacobs said NSW should move away from the ATAR as quickly as possible.

“We need a set of criteria that identifies the most talented students from all backgrounds, not ATAR alone,” Professor Jacobs said.

On Tuesday, an analysis of confidential data from NSW universities, including the University of Sydney, Macquarie, Western Sydney University and UNSW showed that universities were disregarding ATAR cut-offs and admitting students with ATARs as low as 30 into degrees in fields such as business, teaching and engineering.

An ATAR (Australia Tertiary Admissions Rank) is given to more than 50,000 NSW high school students and more than 2700 ACT students in December each year. It has become the uniform four-digit rank to measure a student’s ability against what universities believe is the minimum academic standard required to complete a course, as well as supply and demand for the degree.

Meanwhile, the ANU has defended its system of publishing guaranteed ATAR cut-offs as one of the most transparent in the country as academics expressed outrage at universities’ disregard for student quality, with more than 60 per cent of students at Macquarie and Western Sydney being admitted to degrees despite failing to meet the minimum academic standard.

Richard Hill, a researcher in university management at Griffith University, said the admission of students who were barely capable of completing essays was a “chronic” problem throughout the industry.

“If you have a pulse you can get in,” said Professor Hill. “It’s a very serious issue at the coalface for academics who often have to teach students who are semi-literate, if you ask any academic that has been a massive concern over the last decade”.

The fallout comes as Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham announced on Wednesday that record numbers of students had enrolled in higher education in 2016, with 1.2 million students now undertaking tertiary courses. The 3 per cent increase in student numbers since 2014 has brought the total cost to taxpayers up to $16 billion this year on the back of uncapped student places where universities can enrol as many students as they want.

Mr Birmingham said while the demand-driven system had provided unprecedented access and must continue to be protected, it had come at a significantly higher cost to the taxpayer.

“Recent attrition rates show that almost 15 per cent of these Australians do not progress to their second year. Universities must take responsibility for those students they choose to enrol and ensure they have the capabilities and support to succeed.”

ANU acting vice-chancellor Professor Margaret Harding said “ANU two years ago introduced a system where the university published guaranteed ATAR cut-offs, and the criteria for bonus points, to give students more certainty about their admission to ANU courses.

“Since them, demand for places at ANU is up 20 per cent with no lowering of the minimum 80 ATAR and with no compromise to specific program entry standards.”

A spokesman noted that any application from a student that was within a few points from reaching the required ATAR could be considered under special circumstances but would need to be personally approved by the deputy vice-chancellor.

Meanwhile Professor Harding conceded the ATAR was “an imperfect measure of a student’s ability, and there are other measures to determine potential student success at university”.

Conversely, the University of Canberra has marketed itself as an institution that provided flexible entry through a variety of “pathways”. But it, too, said its ATAR cut-offs were adhered to.

Deputy vice-chancellor education Nick Klomp said: “Entry to university is pursued by a range of people from different backgrounds and stages in life. Entry processes and requirements thus vary.”

For school leavers, the UC “transparently publishes the basic entry floor of this selection rank, which considers ATAR scores plus any bonus points the student is eligible for … Students with ATARs below the cut-off are encouraged to review our bonus points schemes to see if they can still be competitive for selection. We would only offer a place to a student below this minimum entry standard under exceptional circumstances.”

Vice-chancellor Stephen Parker has previously questioned the use of an ATAR in an uncapped university system.

“When there were course quotas, ATAR cut-off scores were rationing devices. Opinions differ as to their value as predictors of success. In some courses and at some levels ATARs seem quite poor predictors. A higher cut-off does not necessarily translate into better outcomes for students.”

NSW Board of Studies president Tom Alegounarias said the university admission system needed a lot more clarity.

“If universities use measurements other than the ATAR then those are transparent and reliable. It is crucial that students know what the rules are and what the bar they have to get over is”.

“If the bar changes without the students’ knowledge then those who are most disadvantaged will suffer”.

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Scott Morrison’s tax advisers want public ‘educated’ on low corporate tax

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The consultation paper requested by former treasurer Joe Hockey called for a concerted effort to improve understanding of business taxation. Photo: Jessica Hromas Ann-Maree Wolff and Phil Edmands of Rio Tinto, and Jane Michie of BHP at the corporate tax avoidance inquiry last year. Photo: Jesse Marlow

Comment: We all pay for Apple’s laughably low tax contribution

Treasurer Scott Morrison’s advisory panel on tax has urged big business and its industry bodies to mount a public relations campaign to “educate” Australians on why companies shouldn’t always pay the mandatory 30 per cent tax rate.

The call for a PR blitz by the Board of Taxation comes as disclosure of Apple’s tiny tax contribution in Australia – just $85 million compared to its sales of $8 billion – reignited debate around whether the big end of town is being let off the hook as the Coalition ponders a higher or broader GST on private taxpayers.

The Australian Tax Office revealed in December that 579 companies with combined turnover of $405.9 billion paid no tax in 2013/14. Apple could be heading for a zero tax bill in 2016 due to $200 million in tax offsets on its books which it can use against future profits.

The Board of Taxation is an arm’s-length adviser to the Treasurer but critics say it is heavily-skewed towards business, with members largely drawn from the big four accountancy firms and the major law firms.

For example, the four-person working group that has proposed a PR campaign to clear up “common misconceptions” about corporate tax includes Ann-Maree Wolff, the head of tax at Rio Tinto for the Australia and Asia-Pacific region.

Rio, along with rival BHP Billiton, took a pummelling at the Senate tax avoidance hearings last year over its use of a “marketing hub” in Singapore to reduce its Australian tax bill – a process known as the “Singapore sling”.

The other members of the working group include Michael Andrew, the former chairman and chief executive of KPMG International, John Emerson, a consultant at lawyers Herbert Smith Freehills and Neville Mitchell, a Cochlear executive who is also president of the “Group of 100” – the peak body for Australia’s senior finance executives.

In a consultation paper on the tax transparency code requested by former treasurer Joe Hockey when he announced the government’s multinational tax avoidance bill, the working group called for a “concerted and ongoing effort to raise the level of understanding of business taxation”.

“Businesses and industry associations have a particularly important role in educating the community,” it said.

“One common misconception that could usefully be addressed through public education concerns the reasons why effective tax rates may be lower than the headline tax rate. For example, many governments provide tax incentives to businesses which invest in designated research and development activities. Recoupment of prior year losses, exposure to foreign exchange fluctuations and conducting overseas operations are other factors which may have the effective of reducing the effective tax rate.”

The board said the Corporate Tax Association is developing an explainer document and News Corp reported on Wednesday that the Business Council of Australia was also poised to launch a tax campaign as it seeks to justify a cut in the company tax rate.

The consultation paper has angered tax transparency campaigners as the Board of Taxation appears to be moving to a completely voluntary, self-assessed system of disclosure for companies with revenues of $500 million or more.

Tax Justice Network spokesman Mark Zirnsak said: “What really alarms us is there is no verification that information submitted is not false or misleading and there are no penalties at all if false information is lodged.”

“If you’re a highly unethical company and a tax dodger this could be an opportunity to get government endorsement and look legitimate by having your unchecked tax numbers on the list,” he said.

with Nassim Khadem

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