UPF leader in court for mock beheading in Bendigo

Posted December 20th, 2018 by admin and filed in 南京夜网
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Blair Cottrell faces the Melbourne Magistrates Court.THE leader of far-right anti-Islam group United Patriots Front has appeared in court in Melbourne on charges relating to a video stunt in front of the City of Greater Bendigo Council offices.
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Dozens of anti-racism protesters clashed with UPF supporters outside the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday as Blair Cottrell appeared on offensive behaviour charges.

Cottrell has been charged with helping make a video “with the intention of inciting serious contempt for, or revulsion or severe ridicule of” Muslims on October 4, 2015.

He has previously said on Facebook he wascharged over an incident in which UPF members filmed themselvesbeheading a dummy with a knife outside the Bendigo council’s office in a protest against plans to build a mosque.

The video reportedly shows the dummy spilling fake blood on to the pavement, and men shouting “Arabic” phrases.

Fellow UPF members Christopher Shortis 45, and Neil Erikson, 32, were also charged over the video.

The High Court last yeardismissed a final legal challengeagainst the council’s approval of the Bendigo mosque, paving the way for it to be built.

Cottrell is also charged with defacing a footpath and the wall of a garden bed next to Bendigo City Council offices, causing $1100 worth of damage to council property and behaving in an offensive manner near the council offices.

On Monday, the anti-facist protesters screamed slogans such as “No Nazis, never again”, “Muslims are welcome, racistsare not” and “You’ll always lose in Melbourne, f— off” and pushed against a police guard surrounding Mr Cottrell and his supporters as they left the court.

About a dozen police officerswere also standingguard outside the court room.

In a rare move usually reserved for cases involving serious violence offences, police required members of the public to register their IDs in order to enter the room.

Police said a magistrate had directed that only 30 people be allowed into the court room at a time and that all of them must be seated.

Cottrell’s court hearing was adjourneduntilMay 23, when he will appear again to contest the charges against him.

Outside court, he told Fairfax Media he would fight the charges, which represented a state government attack against the group, and more broadly “against Australian values”.

“It’s an attempt to silence us, to intimidate us, and also to create a new standard through which they can attack Australian values, break down our free speech, put us all under control.”

He dismissed the court protest as minor, saying there were more police at court than protesters.

Debbie Brennan, a spokeswoman for Campaign Against Racism and Facism, said they had organised the protest to prevent the United Patriots Front forming arumoured”guard of honour” outside court ahead of Mr Cottrell’s hearing.

“We know the importance of exercising our free speech to stop their hate speech,” she said.

“If we weren’t there doing that they would have a public platform and they would be able to grow from people who are suffering from economic crisis and are prepared to look at others to blame instead of the system.”

Leveson’s former boyfriend may avoid giving further evidence at inquest

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The search for the body of Matthew Leveson continues in the Royal National Park south of Sydney. Faye and Mark Leveson, parents of Matthew, also?? did a media conference. Friday 11th November, 2016. Photo: Peter Rae Photo: Peter RaeThe man who led police to the possible burial site of Matthew Leveson’s body may not return to the witness box to face a further grilling about his former boyfriend’s disappearance.
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The parents of 20-year-old Mr Leveson have waited 3453 days to bring their boy home. In November, they were left devastated when a search of the Royal National Park failed to find him and now they face a further delay in finding out what happened to their son.

During a brief mention in the NSW Coroner’s Court on Monday, the inquest into Mr Leveson’s disappearance was adjourned for a further five months.

However police have stressed that detectives on Mr Leveson’s case will use that time to continue searching for the young man’s remains.

Mr Leveson was last seen leaving ARQ Nightclub in Darlinghurst in September 2007.

His former boyfriend, Michael Atkins, 54, gave evidence before the inquest was adjourned following sensational developments last November.

In his evidence, he denied any involvement in Mr Leveson’s suspected death but later led police to the Royal National Park where he claimed Mr Leveson’s body was buried.

Despite searching for days in two different locations in the area south of Sydney, police came away empty handed and Mr Leveson’s determined and unwavering parents were devastated.

It was initially expected that Mr Atkins, who now lives in Queensland, would return to the witness box once the inquest resumed this week.

However, Patrick Saidi, barrister for the NSW Police Commissioner, flagged the possibility that Mr Atkins may not come back.

He said one of the issues expected to arise was whether Mr Atkins “with the threat of perjury hanging over his head” was entitled to fall back on the principle of “self-incrimination”.

Last year, Deputy State Coroner Elaine Truscott took the unusual step of issuing Mr Atkins with a certificate, granted under section 61 of the Coroner’s Act, under which he would not be prosecuted for evidence he gave during the inquest.

In a bid to find Mr Leveson’s body, his parents Mark and Faye consented with the Attorney-General in offering Mr Atkins a second olive branch.

Mr Atkins agreed to a deal under which he would be granted immunity from a perjury charge if he showed investigators where Mr Leveson’s body was.

The fact that Mr Atkins then pointed police to the Royal National Park as the burial site for Mr Leveson contradicted his earlier evidence in the inquest.

Mr Atkins was charged with Mr Leveson’s murder and manslaughter but found not guilty by a jury in 2009.

It is unclear at this stage whether he will be required to get back in the witness box and whether the section 61 certificate would afford him further protection by way of immunity.

The court heard on Monday there were serious legal issues and complexities at play.

Mr Saidi sought to reassure Mr Leveson’s family that the lengthy inquest adjournment would not have an impact on the police’s resolve to find his body.

“They can be reassured, if it is put over to August, that the detectives in charge will have that further time to … continue to go down the avenue of trying to achieve what we all want to achieve,” he said.

Mark Leveson’s response was a testament to his family’s patience over almost 10 years, he said.

“Matt was last seen 3453 days ago,” he told the court.

“This inquest began 407 days ago.”

Outside court, Faye Leveson added: “We are going to bring him home.”

The inquest will resume in August.

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Record submissions and huge opposition to Jupiter Wind Farm proposal

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SundayTarago resident Graham Hawk is concerned about the proposed wind farm development that will be close to his property. The Canberra Times14 June 2014Photo Jay Cronan Photo: Jay CronanThe Jupiter wind farm proposal has attracted massive opposition and more submissions than any NSW renewables project, including the first formal objection ever made by the Australian Wind Alliance to a wind farm project.
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During the exhibition period, which has now closed, about 600 submissions were received by the NSW Department of Planning.

Among the individual submissions, there were 536 against the wind farm and 38 in support of the joint Australian-Spanish venture which plans to install 88 turbines across 23 rural properties in Tarago.

To put the overwhelming response to the project into perspective, of the NSW wind farm proposals for Bango, Biala, Crookwell, Crudine Ridge and Collector in recent years, none received more than 150 total submissions.

The swathe of submissions was in line with what is typically received for major development projects in Sydney.

During the Jupiter wind farm consultation, 10 of the organisation submissions were neither for nor against the proposal, 12 objected, however none advocated for the project.

Among the objecting organisations were the Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council and the Australian Wind Alliance, in an unprecedented move formally objecting to a wind farm project.

“It was the first time and I hope the only time we will find ourselves objecting to a wind farm,” AWA National Coordinator Andrew Bray said.

The alliance’s submission stated the proponent’s “lack of flexibility and poor communications have unnecessarily raised the ire of many local residents”.

Flaws in the environmental assessment of noise and visual impacts, lack of consultation and not considering local planning controls plagued the proposal early on.

However Mr Bray said the major deficiency was the standard of consultation which resulted in a lack of trust and unnecessary hostility toward to the project, but also the broader renewables industry.

“To be honest in this case we see the engagement has been poor and it is very difficult to go back and fix a problem like that,” he said.

“Community engagement is done a lot more professionally and transparently these days. To see a project like this where the engagement was being done to a sub-standard level was incredibly disappointing and upsets the prospects for other good projects taking place. We were reluctant to oppose but we made the call. It is a bottom line issue for us.”

NSW Planning and Environment will assess the submissions and determine whether the proposal will be approved to progress in the coming weeks.

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Coralee Wainman as sweet as ever at 105photosvideo

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Coralee Wainman as sweet as ever at 105 | photos | video ENERGY: Mrs Wainman said she never expected to live to 100, let alone 105. She said she was especially proud to receive another birthday letter from the Queen. Picture: David Stewart
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CELEBRATION: Cutting the birthday cake. Picture: David Stewart

FAMILY: Coralee Wainman with daughter Judy Jackson. Picture: David Stewart

PRESENTATION: Residents of Alton Lodge listen as Lindl Webster takes a stroll down memory lane, and recounts significant moments in history that Mrs Wainman has lived through. Picture: David Stewart

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And while she has lived through some of the most momentous events in history, her fondest memories are of her family’s milestone moments.

One of her happiest and most enduring memories was offlying to Sydney from Cooranbong in 1935 with her husband-to-be,prominent local pioneer aviator Franklyn Wainman,in Charles Kingsford Smith’s planeSouthern Cross to buy an engagement ring.

“That’s the planethat just a few years earlier had completed the world’s first trans-Pacific flightfrom California to Australia,” she said.

Pastor Kenn Duke leads birthday celebrations for Coralee WainmanMrs Jackson said her mother had lived through the advent of many life-changing inventionsand technological advances.

“The other day Mum was talking about how she and Dad would get around in a horse and buggy, and she still remembers when they got their first car, and what a big thing that was,” she said.

The Wainmanswere the proprietors of the landmark Wainman’s Garage, in Cooranbong, for 30 years, before Mr Wainman’s death in 1971.

Prior to settling in Cooranbong, Mrs Wainman worked for a time at David Jones, in Sydney, where she added the finishing touches to the hats before they were put on display for sale.

Last year, at her 104thbirthday, Mrs Wainman told the Lakes Mail how “lots of sugar, salt andchocolate, Weet-Bix for breakfast, and no exercise whatsoever” had been the unlikely cornerstones of her longevity.

“I never thought that I’d make it to 100,” she said on Monday. “But you never know…”

Congratulatory letters from the Queen and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull have arrived for Mrs Wainman.

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Call to keep Wollombi Public School grounds in community’s hands

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Wollombi Public School grounds.The Wollombi Public School premises should remain in the community’s hands, but the question of upkeep needs to be sorted out before any decisions are made, a Cessnock councillor says.
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It’s still not known whether the state government will sell the grounds of the school, which closed at the end of 2014, or allow it to remain available for community use.

Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Catherine Cusack will hear fromstakeholders and other interested people at a public meetingon March 14, to discuss what the future could look like for the former education facility.

Cr Paul Dunn said he wanted to see the old school remain in the community’s hands, but questions of who would own it and how it would be run needed answers.

“It is a beautiful facility, it deserves to be kept in Cessnock community hands,” he said.

“My concern is Cessnock Council already owns several assets in Wollombi. They are not necessarily in a position to be able to afford to own it themselves.

“An option may there may be out of the question. It’s not an easy one. It would totally come down to how the state government sees this as amoney making venture versuscommunity venture.”

Cr Dunn said a peppercorn lease, for example renting the facility to council or a community organisation for $1 for 100 years, or gifting the facility to the community were among other options that could be explored.

“My concern is if the state government gifted it to a trust, there’s no iron clad guarantee that the trust won’t fold after five or ten years so that’s a concern,” he said.

“In my opinion there are two options–either keep it in community hands or sell it. I would personally like to see the money stay back in Wollombi if it was to be sold.

“But there are lots of options on the table. It’s just a matter of who can afford what and who is prepared to do what.”

Wollombi School Community Education Trust president Frank Ganino said the trust had facilitated about 350 community events at the school grounds since April, 2015.Mr Ganino said the trust was trying to keep the school grounds in community hands.

“We feel that there is a need for it in the community, it’s highly valued in the community and we’ve been able to demonstrate with 300-plus events that it is being used by the community,” he said.

“As far as the[Department of Education]was concerned there were no more community events to be held at the school after January 31.But since then we’ve been able to secure an ongoing short-term lease with the department, which is allowing us to come back into the school.”

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