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Elon Musk tops donations as millions raised for Trump shooting victims

<p>In the wake of the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump, a groundswell of support has emerged from celebrities, business leaders, Republican Party notables and countless regular Americans for those affected by the event that left Trump injured, one man dead, and two others in critical condition.</p> <p>A <a href="https://www.gofundme.com/f/president-trump-seeks-support-for-butler-pa-victims" target="_blank" rel="noopener">GoFundMe campaign</a>, initiated by Trump's top finance person, Meredith O'Rourke of Tallahassee, initially set a goal of $1 million. However, by Monday morning, donations had already far surpassed this target. As of Monday evening, the online fundraiser had amassed over $4.6 million from more than 60,000 donations.</p> <p>Prominent figures have made substantial contributions, with tech mogul Elon Musk donating $100,000 in two instalments late on Monday, while the Ultimate Fighting Championship and its president, Dana White, each contributed $50,000.</p> <p>Meredith O'Rourke, the organiser of the fundraiser, said that the collected funds would support the victims and their families, aiding in recovery and providing assistance to those in mourning. "This is about coming together as a community to help those who have suffered from this senseless act of violence," O'Rourke stated.</p> <p>Among the victims is volunteer fire chief <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/hero-victim-identified-at-trump-rally-shooting" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Corey Comperatore</a>, aged 50, who was praised by Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro as a hero who shielded his wife and daughter during the shooting. Two other individuals remain in critical condition as they recover from their injuries.</p> <p>Here are some of the notable donors who have contributed to the "Butler PA Victims GoFundMe" campaign:</p> <p><strong>Elon Musk:</strong> $100,000. The Tesla CEO, X (formerly Twitter) owner, and SpaceX founder, now a Texas resident, has a significant presence in Florida due to regular launches from Cape Canaveral.</p> <p><strong>Kenneth C. Griffin:</strong> $100,000. The founder and CEO of multinational hedge fund Citadel LLC, Griffin, is a Daytona Beach native who maintains a home in Miami.</p> <p><strong>Governor Rick & Ann Scott:</strong> $50,000. Rick Scott, the former governor of Florida, has been serving as a U.S. senator from Florida since 2019.</p> <p><strong>Kid Rock:</strong> $50,000. Versatile musician and entertainer Kid Rock is renowned for blending rock, hip-hop, and country genres, delivering energetic performances and chart-topping hits over a career spanning more than two decades.</p> <p><em>Image: GoFundMe</em></p>

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"Hero" victim identified at Trump rally shooting

<p>A former Pennsylvania volunteer fire chief has been named as the man who got caught in the crossfire of an assassination attempt on Donald Trump at a campaign rally. </p> <p>While Trump was delivering a speech to supporters in a small town in the state of Pennsylvania, 20-year-old Thomas Matthew Crooks was stationed on a rooftop near the event armed with a sniper. </p> <p>Crooks  fired multiple rounds on the former president and spectators, missing Trump, before he was ultimately killed by a Secret Service sniper.</p> <p>Caught up in the crossfire was 50-year-old Corey Comperatore, who died at the rally while trying to protect his daughter from the shooting. </p> <p>Comperatore's sister Dawn Comperatore Schafer took to Facebook to pay tribute to her brother and praise his heroism in his final moments. </p> <p>“The hatred for one man took the life of the one man we loved the most. He was a hero that shielded his daughters,” she wrote on Facebook.</p> <p>“His wife and girls just lived through the unthinkable and unimaginable,” she added.</p> <p>Comperatore’s wife, Helen, said her husband was as a “real-life superhero” who protected them. </p> <p>“Yesterday, what [was meant to] be such an exciting day for my husband, especially, turned into a nightmare for our family,” Helen wrote on Facebook. </p> <p>“What my precious girls had to witness is unforgivable,” she added. “He died the hero he always was.”</p> <p>Comperatore’s daughter, Allyson, echoed her statement, calling her father “the best dad a girl could ever ask for” as she mourned his sudden death. </p> <p>Allyson said that when the gunshots rang out, Comperatore quickly threw her and her mother to the ground to try to protect them after Trump was shot.</p> <p>“He truly loved us enough to take a real bullet for us,” Allyson wrote on Facebook. </p> <p>“And I want nothing more than to cry on him and tell him thank you.”</p> <p>Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro also hailed Comperatore, who was an avid Trump supporter, as a local hero and has ordered flags to be flown half staff in his honour. </p> <p>“Corey died a hero,” Shapiro said. “Corey was the very best of us.”</p> <p>A <a href="https://www.gofundme.com/f/support-allyson-after-tragic-loss??fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTEAAR1AbXfAyX9lw5cZpb1v3op6jM42CFcYObgctlnjT0JokJZAkCMzXjREWkU_aem_e473Brl2b31I68lZxNcpIg" target="_blank" rel="noopener">GoFundMe</a> page to support Helen and Allyson has already raised more than $890,000. </p> <p><em>Image credits: GoFundMe/Xinhua News Agency/Shutterstock Editorial </em></p>

Caring

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Australia’s tax system is being weaponised against victims of domestic abuse. Here’s how

<div class="theconversation-article-body"> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ann-kayis-kumar-466422">Ann Kayis-Kumar</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/unsw-sydney-1414">UNSW Sydney</a></em></p> <p>When women seeking financial help from the government-funded UNSW <a href="https://www.unsw.edu.au/business/our-schools/accounting-auditing-taxation/about-us/unsw-clinic">Tax and Business Advisory Clinic</a> are asked whether they have ever been affected by family or domestic violence, most say they have.</p> <p>In the past year this number has grown from <a href="https://cdn.theconversation.com/static_files/files/3339/sub009.pdf?1718777706">65%</a> to over 80%.</p> <p>And about <a href="https://ssrn.com/abstract=4746954">14%</a> of the clinic’s clients say their tax debts are a result of intimate partner violence. These debts often arise from business debts, bankruptcy, corporate directorships and director penalty notices.</p> <p>We know that economic abuse is a red flag for other forms of domestic violence. Economic abuse occurs in nearly all Australian domestic and family violence cases, affecting more than <a href="https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/people/crime-and-justice/personal-safety-australia/latest-release">2.4 million Australians</a> and costing the economy an estimated <a href="https://www.commbank.com.au/content/dam/caas/newsroom/docs/Cost%20of%20financial%20abuse%20in%20Australia.pdf">A$10.9 billion</a> a year.</p> <p>Unfortunately, existing laws fall well short of protecting abuse victim-survivors from financial loss.</p> <h2>How violent partners weaponise tax</h2> <p>The perpetrators of violence can effectively weaponise the tax system by placing tax debts solely in the names of former partners, often because they have made them directors of companies or through family businesses operating through partnerships or trusts.</p> <p>There is a policy assumption that family members benefit from family partnerships.</p> <p>But this does not always hold in practice and can be problematic when there is economic abuse because Australian tax law requires victims report and pay tax on their “share” of the family partnership’s income.</p> <p>The average tax debt at the tax clinic is about $90,000. This can result in debilitating financial burdens, exhausted savings, insecure housing and prolonged economic instability, well after abusive relationships end.</p> <h2>Change is needed</h2> <p>Australia has no specific strategy for relief of tax debts caused by financial abuse. There are “serious hardship” provisions in Australian taxation law, but these are outdated and in need of <a href="https://theconversation.com/sometimes-people-can-do-with-a-break-3-ways-tax-debt-relief-rules-are-too-tough-156948">reform</a>.</p> <p>Usually people do not have the funds up front so the only way the Australian Taxation Office can collect debts from the abused partner is through (generally two-year) payment plans, offsetting future tax refunds, engaging external debt collectors and initiating bankruptcy proceedings.</p> <p>To that end, the decision announced in this year’s budget to give the Tax Commissioner discretion <a href="https://www.ato.gov.au/about-ato/new-legislation/in-detail/businesses/changes-to-offsetting-debts-on-hold">not to offset</a> against tax returns debts previously placed “on hold” is welcome.</p> <p>It will provide short-term relief by enabling abuse victims to get their refunds instead of having it used by the Tax Office to reduce their debt.</p> <p>Colleagues Christine Speidel, Leslie Book and I want this power extended to all <a href="https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=4746954">forms of tax debts</a> not just for tax debts that have been placed “on hold” especially where the taxpayer is known to have experienced financial abuse.</p> <p>But this wouldn’t go far enough – the victim-survivors would still have the perpetrator’s tax debt hanging over them.</p> <p>Where this happens, financial instability can <a href="https://www.commbank.com.au/content/dam/commbank-assets/support/2021-01/unsw-report-key-findings.pdf">drive women back</a> into abusive relationships.</p> <h2>The US shows what can be done</h2> <p>Legislative reform to shift tax liability from abuse survivors to perpetrators is the key to helping solve the problem.</p> <figure class="align-right zoomable"></figure> <p>The United States has offered some form of “<a href="https://www.irs.gov/individuals/innocent-spouse-relief">innocent spouse relief</a>” since 1971. In 2011 it widened eligibility and <a href="https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-news/ir-11-080.pdf">removed a two-year time limit</a> for requesting relief.</p> <p>It is important to understand the US provisions apply because the country offers jointly filed “married” tax returns. In Australia tax returns are filed by individuals.</p> <p>Australia’s laws would need to change to ensure abused women do not find themselves jointly liable. Any changes should also include debts incurred in the name of partnerships and company directors.</p> <p>The US is the first and only country to do this, largely because of the advocacy of US low-income tax clinics over decades. Australia now has such clinics, funded as part of the Tax Office <a href="https://www.ato.gov.au/individuals-and-families/financial-difficulties-and-disasters/support-to-lodge-and-pay/national-tax-clinic-program">National Tax Clinic Program</a>.</p> <p>Australia’s adoption of US-style rules could provide a model for other jurisdictions, increase tax debt collection (as perpetrators are likely to have better capacity to pay than victims) and foster greater confidence in the Tax Office.</p> <p>Most importantly, it would acknowledge that victim-survivors with tax debts should not bear responsibility for debts incurred by perpetrators.</p> <hr /> <p><em>For information and advice about family and intimate partner violence contact 1800 RESPECT (<a href="https://www.1800respect.org.au/">1800 737 732</a>). If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, contact 000. The Men’s Referral Service (<a href="https://ntv.org.au/get-help/">1300 766 491)</a> offers advice and counselling to men looking to change their behaviour.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232609/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></em></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ann-kayis-kumar-466422">Ann Kayis-Kumar</a>, Founding Director of UNSW Tax and Business Advisory Clinic, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/unsw-sydney-1414">UNSW Sydney</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/australias-tax-system-is-being-weaponised-against-victims-of-domestic-abuse-heres-how-232609">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Money & Banking

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Singapore Airlines offers huge compensation to turbulence victims

<p>Singapore Airlines has offered compensation to passengers who were on board the SQ321 flight, that encountered deadly turbulence last month. </p> <p>One man died of a heart attack and a dozen others were <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/travel/travel-trouble/victim-identified-after-plane-hits-deadly-turbulence" target="_blank" rel="noopener">injured </a>when the flight from London to Singapore experienced sudden and extreme turbulence while flying over Myanmar. </p> <p>The flight carrying 211 passengers and 18 crew members diverted to Bangkok for an emergency landing, where the injured were treated, with some suffering spinal, brain and skull injuries. </p> <p>In a recent statement, the airline said that they will offer anyone injured on the flight from US$10,000 (AU $15,150) in compensation. </p> <p>"For passengers who sustained minor injuries from the incident, we have offered US$10,000 [$15,150] in compensation," they said. </p> <p>"For those who sustained more serious injuries from the incident, we have invited them to discuss a compensation offer."</p> <p>The airline said they sent out the compensation offers on June 10. </p> <p>"Passengers medically assessed as having sustained serious injuries, requiring long-term medical care, and requesting financial assistance are offered an advance payment of US$25,000 to address their immediate needs,"  the compensation offer read. </p> <p>They will also provide full refunds of the air fare to all passengers who were on flight SQ321, regardless of their injuries. </p> <p>All passengers were also provided AU$1,120 for their expenses in Bangkok. </p> <p>"SIA has also been covering the medical expenses of the injured passengers, and arranged for their family members and loved ones to fly up to Bangkok where requested," the airline said. </p> <p>Under international regulations, airlines must offer compensation when passengers are injured or die on a plane. </p> <p>Director of Carter Capner Law, Peter Carter, who is representing passengers on the flight, said all passengers should seek legal advice before signing anything with the airline. </p> <p>"I doubt there is anyone on the aircraft who did not suffer an injury one way or the other. The insurer should clarify that the $10,000 offer covers all passengers including those who endured the terror of the moment but were fortunate to escape physical injury," he told <em>ABC News</em>. </p> <p>"Those with any sort of injury should exercise extreme care and should be evaluated by their own medical specialists to determine how this accident might still affect them."</p> <p><em>Image: Andrew Davies/X</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Victim identified after plane hits deadly turbulence

<p>One man has died and dozens have been left injured after a Singapore Airlines plane encountered deadly turbulence, and was forced to make an emergency landing. </p> <p>The flight was travelling from London to Singapore - a route frequently used to continue on to Australia and New Zealand -  when the plane hit an air pocket while flying over Thailand. </p> <p>The unexpected and extreme turbulence caused the plane to drop over 6,000 feet in a matter of minutes, sending passengers and cabin crew flying around the aircraft. </p> <p>While dozens of people sustained injuries during the terrifying ordeal, authorities said that one elderly man had suffered a heart attack when the turbulence hit and had died onboard. </p> <p>British media named the man as Geoffrey Kitchen, a grandfather and amateur dramatics performer who was on his way to Australia with his wife for a six-week holiday.</p> <p>The 211 passengers - including 56 Australians - and 18 crew on board were diverted to make an emergency landing in Bangkok after the turbulence hit, just a few hours away from their destination. </p> <p>Kittipong Kittikachorn, general manager of Thailand's Suvarnabhumi Airport, confirmed in a press conference that seven passengers were severely injured, and 23 passengers and nine crew members had moderate injuries.</p> <p>Sixteen with less serious injuries received hospital treatment and 14 were treated at the airport.</p> <p>One passenger, Jerry, recalled hitting his head on the overhead lockers when the turbulence hit. </p> <p>"My wife did (hit her head too), some poor people were walking around, ended up doing somersaults," he said, adding that his daughter was also injured and would likely stay in hospital for "a few days".</p> <p>"It was absolutely terrible. And then suddenly it stopped, and it was calm again, and the staff did their best to tend to the injured people." </p> <p>"There were a lot of them, and some of the staff were injured themselves."</p> <p>Another passenger recalled the moment the aircraft had begun “tilting up and there was shaking”. </p> <p>“So I started bracing for what was happening, and very suddenly there was a very dramatic drop,” 28-year-old Dzafran Azmir said.</p> <p>“Everyone seated and not wearing seatbelt was launched immediately into the ceiling."</p> <p>“Some people hit their heads on the baggage cabins overhead and dented it, they hit the places where lights and masks are and broke straight through it.”</p> <p>Singapore Airlines said the nationalities of the passengers were 56 Australians, two Canadians, one German, three Indians, two Indonesians, one from Iceland, four from Ireland, one Israeli, 16 Malaysians, two from Myanmar, 23 from New Zealand, five Filipinos, 41 from Singapore, one South Korean, two Spaniards, 47 from the UK and four from the US.</p> <p>In the hours after the traumatic event, Aviation consultant and pilot Tim Atkinson shared his theory on what caused the “very significant” incident.</p> <p>Atkinson told the BBC that in the increase in air turbulence can be linked to climate change, saying “it’s fairly clear” the Singapore Airlines flight “encountered atmospheric turbulence”.</p> <p>He also noted that the area — called the Intertropical Convergence Zone — is “renowned among pilots, and I dare say passengers, for turbulence”.</p> <p>“Despite abundant caution occasionally, there’s turbulence ahead which can’t be identified, and the unfortunate result of an encounter is injury and, very rarely, fatality,” he said.</p> <p>Mr Atkinson also noted that the larger the aircraft, “the worse the atmospheric perturbation, the disruption in the smoothness of the atmosphere, needs to be to cause major problems”. </p> <p><em>Image credits: Facebook / Twitter</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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E-scooter hit and run victim embraced by Magpies club

<p>In a heartwarming display of community and sportsmanship, the Collingwood AFL club has come together to support a cherished fan, 81-year-old Jessie Hatch, after a distressing e-scooter incident following the Collingwood-Carlton game two weeks ago.</p> <p>Jessie, a lifelong devotee of the Magpies, was leaving the Melbourne Cricket Ground when she was <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/such-a-cowardly-thing-police-hunt-after-e-scooter-hit-and-run-on-81-year-old-woman" target="_blank" rel="noopener">struck by an e-scooter</a> in what she described from the hospital afterwards as "such a cowardly thing".</p> <p>In a touching twist, it was a member of the rival Carlton cheer squad who first rushed to her aid. Reflecting on the incident, Jessie <a href="https://www.9news.com.au/national/great-grandmother-embraced-by-beloved-magpies-after-ugly-escooter-incident/73445ba6-69f0-4954-8984-cc3109e3de30" target="_blank" rel="noopener">recounted to 9News</a>, "Apparently I passed out and they couldn't get a pulse or a heartbeat and I came around finally with someone screaming my name and telling me to wake up and also my son was so distressed."</p> <p>Jessie's son, Greg, expressed his confidence in his mother’s resilience. "She was born in Carlton - she won't admit that - but she was raised in Collingwood . . . So they build them a bit different when they're raised in Collingwood. Tougher than any of us."</p> <p>Despite her injuries, Jessie’s spirit remains unbroken. Dressed proudly in her Magpies jumper, she recently attended a training session where she was warmly welcomed and embraced by the players. </p> <p>The club’s support has been a balm for Jessie. "This is just amazing," she beamed. True to her unwavering dedication, she declared, "I'm going to the game on Saturday. That won't keep me away."</p> <p>In an inspiring gesture of goodwill, Jessie also plans to set aside traditional rivalries to visit Princes Park and thank the Blues fan who helped her. </p> <p>Meanwhile, police have alleged that the e-scooter rider intentionally knocked Jessie down. To that end, a 46-year-old man remains in custody, with his next court appearance scheduled for May 22.</p> <p><em>Images: Nine News | Seven News<br /></em></p>

Caring

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"A kick in the teeth": Father of Hunter Valley crash victim shares his anger

<p>The father of one of the victims of the deadly Hunter Valley bus crash has spoken out, following news that the driver struck a plea deal. </p> <p>On Wednesday, Brett Andrew Button entered into a plea agreement, which saw 10 manslaughter charges be dropped against the man who was behind the wheel when the bus crashed. </p> <p>He then pled guilty to 10 counts of dangerous driving causing death, nine of dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm and 16 of furious driving causing bodily harm.</p> <p>After news of the plea deal broke, the father of one of the victims shared how the downgrade in charges felt like "more than a kick in the teeth". </p> <p>"It reopens wounds and triggers and it evokes, obviously, some anger, but I'm trying to be balanced and stick with the facts and hopefully we can achieve some positive outcomes," Adam Bray told <a href="https://9now.nine.com.au/a-current-affair/hunter-valley-wedding-bus-crash-manslaughter-charges-dropped/d55638e1-690f-41e1-967c-6c714ccbb501" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>A Current Affair</em></a>. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C6s9sJvsnxh/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C6s9sJvsnxh/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by A Current Affair (@acurrentaffair9)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Mr Bray's son, 29-year-old Zach was one of the 10 people who tragically died in the crash. </p> <p>"Five weeks ago we were running 89 charges, including 10 charges of manslaughter."</p> <p>"Thirty six hours before the court today, all the families were told, sold a bit of a story to be honest ... that's extremely disappointing and I'll continue to fight."</p> <p>"It's totally wrong and does it need to take these 10 lives to fix bus and coach safety in Australia?"</p> <p>Mr Bray's comments come as reports emerged that Mr Button had a drug dependency and had prescription painkillers in his system at the time of the crash.</p> <p>"It's criminal to drive a vehicle, a heavy vehicle in Australia, particularly with 35 passengers on board, when you are medicated," Bray said.</p> <p>"So to reduce to lesser charges, it's not balanced.</p> <p>Bray's emotions ran high as he described his son as an "incredible man" who had overcome stage 3 bowel cancer before the fatal crash.</p> <p><em>A Current Affair</em> host Ally Langdon told the grieving father. "I'm so sorry that you are going through this. I'm so sorry the process played out as it has. It's not fair."</p> <p>Following the emotional court proceedings, Mr Bray said he felt like his emotions over the tragedy were "pretty much back to square one".</p> <p>"(I am) processing it. Yep, another massive challenge. We'll do our best to get through it, but also try to get law reform so that 10 beautiful people did not die in vain."</p> <p>"It's far from fair, let's try to rally around government, try to rally around the attorney general, get some public opinion, let's try to create some fairness, it's all we can do."</p> <p><em>Image credits: A Current Affair / Getty Images </em></p>

Caring

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"My angel": Bondi stabbing victim's emotional reunion with her saviour

<p>A woman who was among those stabbed at Bondi Junction Westfield has finally reunited with the man who saved her life. </p> <p>Liya Barko, an international student from Argentina, was one the victims who was stabbed by Joel Cauchi on April 13 during his violent attack which killed six people and injured dozens more. </p> <p>A mystery man in a green t-shirt managed to save her life, but Barko wasn't able to track him down until now. </p> <p>"I would like to see him again, at least give him a hug," she told<em> 9News</em> on Monday.</p> <p>Barko reunited with her hero, identified as ex-military solider Wayne Tolver Banks on Tuesday, finally embracing the man who saved her life. </p> <p>"Oh my god, I remembered you were so tall," Barko said as the pair hugged. </p> <p>"I'm so happy you're alive,"  Banks replied. </p> <p>Banks recalled how during the attack Cauchi looked at him and shook his head, as if to say he wasn't going to attack him, before he stabbed Barko. </p> <p>The ex-military soldier sprung to action and quickly moved Barko into a shop to take refuge, where his wife helped him look after her.</p> <p>"I looked at you when I saw the man stab you and I said straight away to myself I've got to help you... I didn't want you to die," he told Barko. </p> <p>"Straight away I knew what I had to do to take control of the situation and the area."</p> <p>Barko also recalled how Banks' wife was there and helped her get through it when she thought she was going to die. </p> <p>"Your wife she was the person who started to shake me when I started to say 'I want to give up'...she is the one who (said to me) 'You are doing really well'," she said. </p> <p>"For me...you were the angel who just appeared at the right moment at the right place."</p> <p><em>Images: Nine</em></p>

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Kochie's thoughtful act for scam victim

<p>David Koch has given back to a hard-working Aussie who lost her life savings to a convincing scam. </p> <p>For many years, scammers have been using the likeness of Australian celebrities to con people out of their money. </p> <p>Kochie is just one of many high-profile personalities who have had their identities used to run convincing scams, that thousands of people have fallen victim to. </p> <p>The former <em>Sunrise</em> host has often taken to social media to warn people of the illegitimate ads, but it hasn't been enough to stop the scammers in their tracks. </p> <p>In a special <em>7News Spotlight</em> investigation, Kochie joined the team to lift the lid on the multi-billion-dollar scam industry in which fake advertisements featuring well-known celebrities have been used to con more than 600,000 Aussies.</p> <p>“It’s devastating because it’s my reputation on the line,” says Koch.</p> <p>“And these scams are so good, they’re so believable that people who trust me look at me and say, ‘Wow, I’m getting some comfort out of what this bloke is saying,’ and then are ripped off by some scammer from overseas.”</p> <p>Koch is desperately trying to stop this criminal act, saying, “I’ve reported it to the ACCC and ASIC. I’m part of an ACCC case against Meta at the moment surrounding these scam ads.”</p> <p>As part of the investigation, Kochie met Allison, who lost $250,000 when she invested her money in what she thought was a reputable company, fronted by who she believed to be the former <em>Sunrise</em> host.</p> <p>As an avid Port Adelaide supporter, she trusts Koch, who is also the Chairman of the football club.</p> <p>“Port Adelaide members are all part of a big family,” says Koch. “And the fact that these scammers use my association with the club to prey on members is just abhorrent.”</p> <p>After losing her savings, Allison has been struggling to make ends meet, and is on a payment plan so she can stay as a member of the AFL club she loves.</p> <p>After learning of her story, Koch himself has stepped in and ensured she has lifelong membership.</p> <p>“It’s the least we can do,” says Koch to Allison. “Because, football has got to be your haven.”</p> <p>Allison is just one of the many victims of complex scams in Australia, with reporter Sarah Greenhalgh believes millions of dollars have been illegally stolen.</p> <p>“The scammers successfully prey on these people’s unique vulnerabilities and the victims’ lives have changed forever as a result,” she says.</p> <p><em>Image credits: 7News Spotlight</em></p>

Money & Banking

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"An insult to human dignity": Mother of Bondi stabbing victim hits out at the media

<p>The mother of Bondi stabbing victim Jade Young has hit out at how social media and major news outlets reported on her daughter's death. </p> <p>Jade Young, 47, was one of six people fatally stabbed by Joel Cauchi during his violent rampage at Bondi Junction Westfield on April 13th. </p> <p>Following the tragedy, graphic videos and images of the attacks were circulated online.</p> <p>Now, Jade's mother Elizabeth Young, writing in the <a href="https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/my-daughter-was-killed-in-the-bondi-junction-attack-how-my-family-found-out-is-shameful-20240429-p5fnbw.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Sydney Morning Herald</a> on Wednesday, said it was “shameful” how her family found out about Jade’s death.</p> <p>“Members of my family recognised Jade and her husband Noel in uncensored vision being played on a mainstream TV news feed, with vision of Jade lying on the ground at the shopping centre, receiving CPR,” she wrote.</p> <p>“The vision, shared on social media and picked up — and used by — multiple news media programs shared my daughter’s final moments with millions. Finding out that a loved one has been murdered is a horror that I do not wish on anyone. But seeing the vision of their last moments and knowing it has been broadcast to millions of people is an appalling breach of privacy and an insult to human dignity.”</p> <p>Ms Young went on to say how some of the major media organisations that shared violent images of the Bondi stabbing “approached our family within hours of the attack, offering their condolences … and the opportunity to share our family’s story”.</p> <p>“These same media organisations reported the failure of a certain popular social media platform to take down videos, without acknowledging their own complicity,” she said.</p> <p>“I am not surprised at their hypocrisy, but I am angry.”</p> <p>“Sharing violent images or personal material from the lives of victims of crime is not free speech — it is enormously profitable for some but it’s speech with a steep price for the victims,” she said.</p> <p>“Those who run social media platforms are remote from the pain inflicted by their uploads and the dystopia they have helped create. It is the victims who bear the cost.”</p> <p>Last week, hundreds of mourners attended a public memorial for Ms Young, an acclaimed architect and mother-of-two, where mourners were encouraged to wear colourful clothing “in memory of Jade”.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images / Facebook </em></p>

Family & Pets

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"Never again": Bondi stabbing victim’s mother shares heartbreaking plea

<p>The tragic events of April 13th at Westfield Bondi Junction shook the nation to its core. Among the victims of this senseless act was Jade Young, a 47-year-old architect, described by her mother Elizabeth as "glorious" and "hardworking". Her life was abruptly taken while shopping for a birthday present with her daughter. </p> <p>At a memorial service held in Sydney’s Botanic Gardens, hundreds gathered to pay their respects to Jade. At the request of Jade's heart-broken mother, Elizabeth, mourners adorned themselves in bright colours, a vibrant tribute to a woman described as "dearly loved and irreplaceable".</p> <p>Elizabeth's words cut through the sombre air, pleading for attention not only to her daughter's memory but to the pressing issues that led to her untimely demise.</p> <p>“I would like you to listen, I want Australia to listen,” Elizabeth said. “Jade Young was attacked and killed outright in front of her daughter.”</p> <p>As part of her tribute, Elizabeth then made a poignant call for action. “Never again do I want to read the words tragic or tragedy associated with the perpetrator of the murder of my daughter,” she said. “He came prepared, he had intention. He was a killer ... making a shopping centre the most dangerous place on earth for Jade.</p> <p>“I want Jade’s girls to grow up believing there is security, goodness and love in the world. I want politicians both federal and state to address the gaps in mental health care to make it a safer for our girls and all Australians.”</p> <p>It's a wish echoed by countless families who have been touched by tragedy and who long for a safer, more compassionate society.</p> <p>The outpouring of support following Jade's passing speaks volumes about the impact she had on those around her. Her colleagues at Georgina Wilson Associates, where she dedicated over a decade of her life, shared heartfelt messages of grief and disbelief. "Jade was family," they wrote, a sentiment that resonates with all who had the privilege of knowing her.</p> <p>In the wake of this tragedy, the generosity of strangers has shone brightly, with over $235,000 donated to support Jade Young's husband and daughters. It's a testament to the kindness and compassion that exist within our communities, a glimmer of hope in the face of darkness.</p> <p><em>Images: GoFundMe</em></p>

Family & Pets

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"I am so heartbroken": Tributes flow for bride-to-be stabbing victim

<p>Family and friends of Dawn Singleton are in mourning after the 25-year-old was one of the six people stabbed to death by Joel Cauchi in Bondi Junction Westfield on Saturday. </p> <p>The 25-year-old was planning her wedding at the time of the stabbing, and was in the shopping centre looking for wedding makeup. </p> <p>Dawn, daughter of Aussie millionaire businessman John Singleton, had purchased her wedding dress just days before her life was tragically cut short.</p> <p>“Dawn, I should be writing your wedding speech, but instead I sit here sobbing,” Friend Jade O’Connor wrote on Facebook.</p> <p>“This year you were meant to get married to the love of your life — I’m so heartbroken and (I) can’t believe this reality.”</p> <p>Friend Emmi Shannon told <a href="https://7news.com.au/news/heartbreaking-detail-emerges-after-john-singletons-daughter-dawn-singleton-named-as-bondi-junction-westfield-stabbing-victim-c-14313870" target="_blank" rel="noopener">7News</a>, “She was just the most perfect human being that I’ve ever met. She’s so sweet, so humble, so down to earth.”</p> <p>Dawn was engaged to her high school sweetheart Ashley Wildey, a police officer who had reportedly been on the scene at the shopping centre, attending the scene after finishing another shift. </p> <p>"He had arrived at Westfield when officers realised his fiancée was one of the victims," a source told <em>The Daily Telegraph</em>.</p> <p>Mr Wildey was then allowed to leave the scene to be comforted by family and friends, as is procedure.</p> <p>Singleton worked at White Fox Boutique, with colleagues saying they were “devastated” by her death.</p> <p>“We are all truly devastated by this loss,” the company said on social media. </p> <p>“Dawn was a sweet, kind-hearted person who had her whole life ahead of her. She was really amazing."</p> <p>“We send our love and deepest condolences to her partner, the Singleton family and her friends.”</p> <p>Dawn was one of six women killed by Joel Cauchi in the callous attack, which left several others injured. </p> <p>Cauchi's victims included Pikria Darchia, 55, Ashlee Good, 38; Faraz Tahir, 30; Dawn Singleton, 25; Jade Young, 47; and Yixuan Cheng, 25.</p> <p>A dozen others – mostly women – were also injured, including Good’s nine-month old baby girl.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Facebook</em></p>

Caring

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Kyle Sandilands' family member among first victims stabbed in Bondi

<p>Kyle Sandilands became emotional as he described how his wife’s relative Yvonne Wineberg was one of the first women targeted during the terrifying stabbing <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/family-of-bondi-killer-break-silence" target="_blank" rel="noopener">attack</a> at Westfield Bondi Junction on Saturday. </p> <p>Speaking to co-host Jackie “O” Henderson and newsreader Brooklyn Ross, on <em>The Kyle &amp; Jackie O show</em> Monday morning, Sandilands revealed: “One of the first women to get stabbed in the shoulder was a family member of ours.</p> <p>“She’s a very close family member to my wife.</p> <p>“So, we were watching it on TV, and saw one of our families were involved and carted off to hospital.”</p> <p>He also said that a Bondi lifeguard, who was trapped in Myer during the incident after the store had pulled down their shutters to keep shoppers safe, had asked to be let out so he could help Wineberg. </p> <p>“He could see our family member that got stabbed laying on the ground. There was so much blood.</p> <p>“He said, ‘if I don’t get to her, she’s losing too much blood’, so they let him out, and he rendered assistance before the paramedics arrived.”</p> <p>Sandilands didn't name the lifeguard, but shared the horrors the lifeguard witnessed during the attack. </p> <p>“He said every 50 foot there was another person laying in a pile of blood — all the way down the mall,” the KIIS FM star said. </p> <p>Wineberg was released from hospital on Sunday afternoon.</p> <p>NSW Police identified Joel Cauchi as the killer on Sunday.</p> <p>He was fatally shot just minutes after he left six dead and 12 injured during the terrifying attack at the shopping centre on Saturday night. </p> <p>Cauchi's parents have <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/family-of-bondi-killer-break-silence" target="_blank" rel="noopener">spoken out</a> and expressed their devastation and disbelief at their son's actions, describing the attack as "truly horrific".</p> <p>They also said that they "have no issues with the police officer who shot our son as she was only doing her job to protect others and we hope she is coping alright.”</p> <p>Cauchi's victims included Pikria Darchia, 55, Ashlee Good, 38;  Faraz Tahir, 30; Dawn Singleton, 25; Jade Young, 47; and Yixuan Cheng, 25.</p> <p>A dozen others – mostly women – were also injured, including Good’s nine-month old baby girl. </p> <p><em>Images: 7NEWS</em></p> <p> </p>

Caring

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Are you a victim of elder abuse without even realising it?

<p>A wealthy widow being told how to manage her money. A retired couple being denied access to their grandchildren. A single woman paying her high income-earning son’s credit card debt with her superannuation. Very different Australians with one unfortunate thing in common – they are all victims of elder abuse.</p> <p>While most people are familiar with the term ‘domestic violence’, the term ‘elder abuse’ is less well known. Which in itself is part of the problem: a lack of awareness helps perpetuate the cycle.</p> <p>The World Health Organization (WHO) <a href="https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/abuse-of-older-people" target="_blank" rel="noopener">defines elder abuse</a> as:</p> <p><em>“a single or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust, which causes harm or distress to an older person. This type of violence constitutes a violation of human rights.”</em></p> <p>It isn’t necessarily restricted to actions that leave physical scars – which can make it harder to identify, even for victims themselves.</p> <p>The absence of physical violence or financial theft can provide a false sense of security. Not recognising the signs that something is amiss lets mistreatment go unnoticed altogether. Alternatively, excuses are made for a loved one’s behaviour or concerns aren’t raised in order to ‘keep the peace’.</p> <p><strong>How prevalent is elder abuse in Australia?</strong></p> <p>The limited discussion of elder abuse in the media and society in general would suggest it isn’t common in Australia. Sadly, this couldn’t be more wrong.</p> <p><a href="https://www.aihw.gov.au/family-domestic-and-sexual-violence/population-groups/older-people#abuse" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Government figures</a> estimate that one in six older people – around 598,000 individuals – were directly affected in 2023.</p> <p>Psychological abuse was the most widespread, while 2.1 per cent of older Australians – 83,800 people – experienced financial abuse. </p> <p><strong>Who is responsible?</strong></p> <p>The saddest fact of all is that elder abuse is typically committed by people their victims should be able to trust the most.</p> <p>More than half (53 per cent) of perpetrators are family members: adult children are the most common, with partners/spouses ranking third. </p> <p>Friends are the second most common perpetrators.</p> <p><strong>What are the impacts?</strong></p> <p>Impacts of elder abuse are typically far-reaching and depend on the type of abuse involved. </p> <p>Among them are:</p> <ul> <li>Loss of control and independence</li> <li>Physical and mental health issues</li> <li>Relationship breakdowns</li> <li>Financial losses</li> <li>Insecure living arrangements</li> </ul> <p>It is not uncommon for older people to be pressured over how to manage their finances and estate planning, influencing everything from how much they have to live off in retirement to care arrangements in their final years and who benefits from their estate. </p> <p>Much of the abuse and subsequent fallout centres around the family home. </p> <p>Charity <a href="https://www.theforgottenwomen.org.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Forgotten Women</a> notes there are over 40,000 women aged 55-plus who are homeless in Queensland alone. Elder abuse is often a contributing – if not causal – factor, such as one woman forced to live in her car while her son occupies her home. </p> <p>Meanwhile, the current housing crisis creates ideal conditions for abuse to flourish. Multi-generational households risk reduced independence and increased control over older people. A lack of proper agreements and structures when the Bank of Mum and Dad assists with a home deposit and/or loan guarantee opens the door to expectations of further financial assistance or threats to default on guaranteed loans.</p> <p><strong>Warning signs of elder abuse</strong></p> <p>Besides physical violence, red flags to look for include:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Coercive control</strong> – undue pressure over decision-making, living arrangements, spending and investment strategies, pensions, superannuation, tax, legal affairs and wills, ownership of assets, power of attorney.</li> <li><strong>Guilt</strong> – emotional manipulation and ‘guilt-tripping’ for not meeting particular demands.</li> <li><strong>Isolation</strong> – from family and friends as well as from independent professional advisers (your accountant, financial adviser, lawyer, healthcare professionals etc.).</li> <li><strong>Money mismanagement</strong> – taking cash without consent; restricting access to money and assets; pressure to pay expenses that aren’t yours.</li> <li><strong>Neglect and abandonment</strong> – withholding essentials or anything that is needed to maintain quality of life.</li> <li><strong>Blackmail</strong> – a tragically common example is withholding access to grandchildren unless financial or legal demands are met.</li> </ul> <p>Given the potentially disastrous consequences, it is important to recognise the signs and act quickly. Don’t suffer in silence or hope that things will sort themselves out.</p> <p>If you or someone you know is experiencing elder abuse, seek help straight away. Speak to a trusted relative or friend. Seek independent legal and financial advice about your affairs. Or call the government’s <a href="https://www.health.gov.au/contacts/elder-abuse-phone-line" target="_blank" rel="noopener">free elder abuse line on 1800 353 374</a>. And if your life is in danger, call triple zero (000) immediately.</p> <p><strong>About the Author:</strong> Helen Baker is a licensed Australian financial adviser and author of <em>On Your Own Two Feet: The Essential Guide to Financial Independence for all Women</em>. Helen is among the 1% of financial planners who hold a master’s degree in the field. Proceeds from book sales are donated to charities supporting disadvantaged women and children. Find out more at <a href="http://www.onyourowntwofeet.com.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">www.onyourowntwofeet.com.au</a></p> <p><em>Disclaimer: The information in this article is of a general nature only and does not constitute personal financial or product advice. Any opinions or views expressed are those of the authors and do not represent those of people, institutions or organisations the owner may be associated with in a professional or personal capacity unless explicitly stated. Helen Baker is an authorised representative of BPW Partners Pty Ltd AFSL 548754.</em></p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

Retirement Income

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Christchurch attack victims' families reflect on tragedy five years on

<p>It's been five years since 51 men, women and children, were murdered in a terror attack when a white supremacist opened fire at Al Noor and Linwood mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.</p> <p>Now, the victims' families have reflected on the tragic day, and commemorated their loved ones on the five-year anniversary of the attacks.</p> <p>Dr Maysoon Salama, who lost her son Atta Elayyan, 33, relives the grief of losing her son every day.</p> <p>“The pain is still fresh,” she told <em>7NEWS</em>.</p> <p>Five years on, the good memories she shared with her son still play back in her mind.</p> <p>“Atta was an amazing son,” she said. “He’s touched the lives of so many people.”</p> <p>Despite the tragedy, Dr Salama remains strong and finds herself healing through her granddaughter Aya.</p> <p>“I feel like I see her father when I see her,” she said.</p> <p>“It’s a really hard journey ... but she has always been my focus.”</p> <p>Aya was two when she lost her father, and Dr Salama was faced with the heartbreaking task of helping her granddaughter adjust to a life without her father.</p> <p>“When I look her in the eyes and she will ask, ‘Where is my dad?’, what am I going to tell her?” she recalled thinking.</p> <p>“How are we going to tell her when she’s so attached to her daddy? She loved him so much.”</p> <p>Dr Salama's husband, Mohammad Alayan, was among the dozens of people hospitalised following the attack, with doctors at the time saying he was “lucky to survive”.</p> <p>“He had been shot twice. One in his head and it affected his vision and one in his shoulder and she said it was just a few millimetres away from his heart,” Maysoon said.</p> <p>The couple run a Muslim childcare centre An-Nur, and have worked together to help children navigate New Zealand's darkest days.</p> <p>She recalled the sinking feeling when she first heard of the attacks while at work, and how her husband's first instinct was to tell her to protect herself and everyone at the childcare centre.</p> <p>“I got a call from my husband and he told me he was in hospital and that I have a big responsibility to protect the children and the teachers and lock down, close the doors because he was afraid the shooter would also come to our place because we are a Muslim childcare centre,” she said.</p> <p>“More families who were distressed started coming to pick up their children, and some of them even had blood on their shirts, some of them witnessed the thing.</p> <p>“It was really an awful situation.”</p> <p>Not long after, she learned that her own son had also been injured, but at the time had no idea of the reality of it all.</p> <p>Aya Al-Umari lost her brother, Hussein, on the fateful day.</p> <p>“It happened so suddenly, I had no time to grieve,” she said.</p> <p>Hussein spent the last moments of his life protecting other people, and even though Aya misses his hugs more than anything, she takes comfort in knowing that her brother's legacy will live on.</p> <p>“He had the opportunity to escape, but he didn’t,” she said.</p> <p>“He was running towards the terrorist.</p> <p>“It really goes to show, especially in his last moments, he was always a giver.”</p> <p>Both Aya and Dr Salama both take comfort in the belief that their loved ones died as as a Shahid – a true martyr who died in the name of their faith in Islam.</p> <p>Dr Salama hopes that the findings from last year’s coronial inquest, expected to be handed down this year, will provide a sense of closure to the victims' families.</p> <p>She also hopes that people will use the fifth anniversary of the shootings to reflect on the work that is yet to be done and call for more action in fighting Islamophobia and extremism.</p> <p>“We can fight Islamophobia by challenging the biases and educating ourselves also and intervening against discrimination.</p> <p>“See something, say something.”</p> <p>Canterbury's Muslim community will also gather today to honour the victims with a commemoration service at Masjid Annur in the evening, according to<em> <a href="https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/511744/muslims-mark-5th-anniversary-of-christchurch-mosque-terror-attacks" target="_blank" rel="noopener">RNZ</a></em>.</p> <p>Brenton Tarrant, who was behind the terror attacks, was sentenced to life in jail without parole – the first person in New Zealand's history to receive the sentence because his actions were deemed "so wicked".</p> <p><em>Images: 7News</em></p> <p> </p>

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“Unbelievably legitimate”: Deb Knight falls victim to popular scam

<p>Deb Knight has shared how she fell victim to a popular scam, losing $1,200 while trying to get Taylor Swift tickets for her daughter's birthday. </p> <p>Like many people around Australia, the veteran journalist was eager to get her hands on tickets to the highly anticipated Eras Tour as a once in a lifetime surprise for her eight-year-old daughter's birthday present.</p> <p>After missing out on tickets through all official channels, Deb thought hope was lost, until a friend reached out to her. </p> <p>“A really good friend, who I’ve known all my life, contacted me and said, ‘do you still want Taylor Swift tickets?’” Knight told <em>A Current Affair</em>.</p> <p>“It was my daughter’s eighth birthday and getting my hands on these tickets would be the best present ever."</p> <p>“My friend put me in contact with her friend who had the tickets – or so I thought.”</p> <p>Knight had received a phone call from her close friend who said her cousin was selling tickets, but unbeknownst to everyone involved, the friend’s Facebook account had been hacked. </p> <p>Deb promised to pay half the cost of the tickets as a bond, then pay the rest after she had seen the tickets, which she said looked “unbelievably legitimate". </p> <p>Tech expert Trevor Long joined Deb on <em>ACA</em>, and noticed one major error about the fake tickets. </p> <p>“The difference is a genuine Taylor Swift ticket in an Apple Wallet right now does not have that barcode.”</p> <p>Alarm bells started ringing for the veteran journalist when the so-called seller said the payment had not come through, but by then it was too late.</p> <p>Deb contacted her bank but it was too late to get her $1,200 back, and her hunt to find Taylor Swift tickets continued. </p> <p>“I realised I’d been scammed. I felt sick to the stomach, absolutely humiliated. I also felt embarrassed and ashamed,” she said.</p> <p>“I was reluctant to speak publicly about this but I think we’ve got to. We have to normalise it so people feel there’s less of a stigma about it."</p> <p>“It happens to everyone, even Deb Knight – it’s disgusting, what’s happening, so something needs to be done.”</p> <p>Police have warned Swifties who missed out on tickets to the singer’s upcoming tour not to fall prey to ticketing scams, and only to purchase tickets through official channels such as Ticketek marketplace. </p> <p>Since tickets for the Eras tour went on sale last June, and subsequently sold out in record timing, Victoria Police said there had been more than 250 reports of ticketing scams for Taylor Swift shows alone.</p> <p><em>Image credits: A Current Affair</em></p>

Money & Banking

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Leaked photo of Sydney shark victim sparks urgent probe

<p>The sanctity of patient privacy has come under scrutiny at Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital following the leak of a graphic photograph depicting the treatment of <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/woman-bitten-by-shark-in-sydney-harbour-identified" target="_blank" rel="noopener">shark attack victim Lauren O'Neill</a>.</p> <p>The 29-year-old suffered a serious injury after being attacked by a bull shark near a private wharf in Elizabeth Bay, sparking both a medical and privacy crisis.</p> <p>The photograph in question, which we are not going to publish, shows Ms O'Neill's uncovered leg being attended to by medical staff, and has stirred concerns about the vulnerability of patient privacy in the digital age. St Vincent's Hospital has launched a comprehensive investigation into the breach, expressing deep regret and extending apologies to Ms O'Neill.</p> <p>"St Vincent’s has become aware of photos in the public domain that appear to have been taken in the Emergency Department and are related to those of a patient injury," said hospital spokesperson David Faktor.</p> <p>"We have sincerely apologised for any part St Vincent’s played in the photos being taken." </p> <p>The investigation aims to uncover the identity of the person responsible for taking the photograph and how it ended up in the public domain. Faktor aptly described the incident as a "wake-up call", highlighting the ease with which privacy can be compromised in today's digital landscape.</p> <p>Ms O'Neill, who is on track for a full recovery, expressed her gratitude to the heroic neighbours, emergency services and medical professionals who aided her. However, her appreciation comes amid the distressing breach of her privacy during a vulnerable moment.</p> <p>As the investigation unfolds, it is crucial for St Vincent's Hospital to implement robust protocols and security measures to prevent future breaches and reassure the public of their commitment to patient confidentiality.</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Caring

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Woman bitten by shark in Sydney Harbour identified

<p>A 29-year-old woman may lose her leg after being bitten by a bull shark while swimming in Sydney Harbour. </p> <p>On Monday night, Lauren O'Neill went for an evening swim near a private wharf in Elizabeth Bay when she was attacked by the shark, screaming out to neighbours for help.</p> <p>Michael Porter told NCA NewsWire he had just gotten home from work when he heard the woman’s scream.</p> <p>“I saw Lauren climbing out of the Harbour on the ladder and she was sort of pulling herself up quite weakly, she didn’t have much strength and there was a whole pool of red blood in the Harbour,” Mr Porter said.</p> <p>“Her leg was limp.”</p> <p>An ambulance was called and transported Lauren to St Vincent's Hospital, where she remains with "serious injuries".</p> <p>While her condition is stable, the 29-year-old is facing the possibility of losing her leg.</p> <p>Marine biologist Lawrence Chlebeck told <a href="https://www.news.com.au/technology/science/animals/woman-bitten-in-sydney-harbour-shark-attack/news-story/c59017954729f2452efc7f26a8a3f0b1" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>news.com.au</em></a> it was “highly likely” to be a bull shark that bit Ms O'Neill, and warned people against swimming in the harbour, particularly in low light.</p> <p>“Bull sharks know they can come into Sydney Harbour and score an opportunistic feed,” he said.</p> <p>“If they can’t see or the water is cloudy, these animals will bite just to determine what something is and whether it’s prey. Unfortunately, Sydney Harbour after dusk is simply not a safe place to swim.” </p> <p><em>Image credits: Instagram / Nine News</em></p>

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9/11 victim’s remains identified nearly 23 years after terror attack

<p dir="ltr">Almost 23 years on from the deadly attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York, a victim’s remains have been identified. </p> <p dir="ltr">John Ballantine Niven, 44, was an executive at Aon Risk Services, an insurance firm on the 105th floor of Tower Two of the Trade Centre complex in September 2001. </p> <p dir="ltr">Niven is the 1,650th victim identified from the deadliest act of terrorism on American soil, when hijackers crashed planes into the Twin Towers, killing 2,753 people on September 11th. </p> <p dir="ltr">At the time of his death, he left behind a wife and an 18-month-old son, with his body remaining unidentified until now. </p> <p dir="ltr">“While the pain from the enormous losses on September 11th never leaves us, the possibility of new identifications can offer solace to the families of victims,” New York City Mayor Eric Adams said in a statement. </p> <p dir="ltr">“I’m grateful for the ongoing work from the Office of Chief Medical Examiner that honours the memory of John Ballantine Niven and all those we lost.”</p> <p dir="ltr">In recent years, the medical examiner’s office has been utilising modern advanced DNA technology to identify victims through their remains. </p> <p dir="ltr">“We will forever remember our heroes who perished on 9/11 and we appreciate the continuous efforts of forensic experts to help identify victims,” Oyster Bay Supervisor Joseph Saladino said in a separate statement. </p> <p dir="ltr">“We’re hopeful that this amazing advance in technology helps bring peace to Niven’s family and allows him to eternally rest in peace.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Roughly 40 percent of victims of the World Trade Centre attack have yet to have their remains identified, as few full bodies were recovered when the towers collapsed.</p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 13pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><em>Image credits: Getty Images / legacy.com </em><span id="docs-internal-guid-d265186e-7fff-17e5-ac35-9495d9fb314a"></span></p>

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"A moving time": Hunter Valley bus crash victims honoured at AFLW grand final

<p>Avid footy fans Nadene and Kyah McBride were among the ten wedding guests killed in the <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/news/news/more-than-we-can-bear-hunter-valley-bus-crash-victims-identified" target="_blank" rel="noopener">horror bus crash</a> on the June long weekend.</p> <p>They are survived by grieving dad and husband, Graham McBride, who was also on the bus at the time of the crash, but only suffered neck and arm injuries. </p> <p>On Sunday, their lives and love for the sport have been honoured during the during the AFLW grand final between North Melbourne and Brisbane. </p> <p>“We thank all of those involved in community football for their tireless efforts in making our game the best it can be,” the game's MC and Seven commentator Nat Edwards said as they brought out the cup. </p> <p>Nadene, who was the founder and coach of the Singleton Roosterettes, has been named an official AFLW community hero. </p> <p>Her daughter Kyah was a star player in the team, and was also part of the Sydney Swans AFL women's development squad.</p> <p>Graham joined the guard of honour as his wife and daughter were acknowledged. </p> <p>He paid a touching tribute to his loved ones before the game. </p> <p>"Nadene has done a lot for football so to get their recognition back hits home," a teary-eyed Graham told <em>Nine News</em>.</p> <p>"Everyone enjoyed being around the girls, they made you smile," he added. </p> <p>In another interview with 7News he told the publication:  “I think that cup will be full of happy tears and sad tears. It’ll be a proud moment." </p> <p>”(Nadene) bled Sherrin in her veins. Footy was everything to her.</p> <p>”I’m going to do it for my girls ... I bloody love them and they love their football.”</p> <p>Just months prior to the tragic accident, Nadene and Kyah celebrated their teams win. </p> <p>“For Singleton AFC when we first started, we were actually not very good,” Nadene said in a Ladbrokes video that resurfaced following the crash. </p> <p>“One of our biggest deficits was about 263-to-nil I’m pretty sure. We only kicked two goals for that whole season, and I kicked them both and I was playing centre halfback.</p> <p>“We’ve come a massive way since then and in 2020, miraculously and through a lot of hard work, we actually took out the premiership.</p> <p>“We beat a team we definitely shouldn’t have beaten on the day and we did.”</p> <p>Bus driver Brett Andrew Button was <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/52-new-charges-levelled-at-hunter-valley-bus-driver" target="_blank" rel="noopener">charged</a> over the crash and remains before court. </p> <p><em>Images: Getty/ Nine</em></p>

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