Squiz Today / 27 June 2019
Squiz Today – Thursday, 27 June
THREE MINUTE SQUIZ
“For anyone tossing it up I’d say give it a go, you have nothing to lose, you have the best country in the world to come home to if it’s not for you.”
Alice Gibson is home after treading the well-worn path of generations of 20-somethings before her - she's been an Aussie in London for a couple of years. But far from working a bar job, Alice went to work at upmarket department store Harrods. And now she's home working on the family farm. Please welcome Alice to today’s Three Minute Squiz.
HERE WE GO ON LAWYER X APPEALS
The Victorian Government yesterday granted Faruk Orman the right to appeal his conviction over concerns his case was tainted by his lawyer Nicola Gobbo who was also acting as a police informant. It is the first case to go back to the courts as a result of the Lawyer X saga, which has been described as Victoria's largest ever legal scandal and is currently the subject of a Royal Commission.
BACK IT UP A BIT...
Orman was jailed in 2009 for his part in the murder of Melbourne crime figure Victor Peirce. Peirce was acquitted of the murders of two young police officers in 1988. He was shot dead by Andrew "Benji" Veniamin in 2002 after Orman (then 20yo) drove the gunman to the scene. Orman was sentenced to a minimum jail term of 14 years. His legal team says Gobbo (and remember, she was his lawyer...) encouraged ‘witnesses’ to inform on him, told police about the weaknesses in his case, and encouraged them to keep the pressure on him. He’s now served 12 years and had exhausted all options for further appeal. Unsurprisingly, the government’s intervention was welcomed by Orman and his lawyers.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
Legal eagles are expecting that heaps of cases will be challenged on the back of the scandal. Gobbo worked as a barrister for the who's who of Melbourne's gangland criminals from 1998 to 2009, and she has claimed her work as a police informer led to the conviction of more than 380 criminals. The current investigation is expected to put many convictions of some seriously bad people in doubt, including well-known crims like Tony Mokbel. Brace for the wave…
SQUIZ THE REST
WHAT ELSE HAPPENED IN THE COURTS YESTERDAY?
Victoria’s construction union boss John Setka pleaded guilty and was placed on a one-year good behaviour bond for harassing his wife Emma Walters, who outed herself yesterday as “the woman at the centre of all of this.” Setka still faces calls for his resignation over a number of things, including this offence and allegations he denigrated the work of family violence prevention campaigner Rosie Batty.
And former Essendon footy coach Mark' Bomber' Thompson yesterday told a court he became an ice user after the club’s 2012 drugs scandal left him in “a bad way”. Charged with trafficking and possession of a range of drugs after a raid on his home last year, he says he never dealt. It’s been a big fall from grace for the AFL legend who also coached Geelong to two premierships after a stellar playing career.
HOME FIRE KILLS THREE KIDS
A fire that destroyed a home in Singleton, NSW sadly took the lives of 5yo twins Matylda and Scarlett, and their 11yo brother Blake Rinkin. The heroic efforts of neighbours and rescue services saved mother Kara Atkins (who is in intensive care with burns) and her daughter Bayley, 8yo (who is making good progress after suffering smoke inhalation). The cause of the fire is being investigated, but reports say a fireplace in the home is thought to be responsible. The tight-knit community is said to be devastated and has already started to rally around the family.
MUELLER TO TESTIFY
Former special counsel Robert Mueller will testify before two US Congressional committees on 17 July. The public hearings will provide the moment Democrats have been looking for with the formal investigation into President Donald Trump’s campaign and alleged links with Russia done and dusted. Not that Mueller will be that excited about it… The former FBI director is well versed in testifying before Congress, so that won’t bother him. And he’s already told anyone interested in the investigation to talk to the hand because the report says it all. For his part, Trump’s tweet was short but direct...
CAMPAIGNERS HOPE THIS PICTURE SPEAKS A THOUSAND WORDS
Time will tell if this distressing photo* becomes the iconic image of the migration crisis on the US-Mexico border – just as this image of a bloodied boy came to symbolise the tragedy of the Syrian war. But first things first. The deaths of a father and daughter - Oscar and Valeria Ramírez - after they attempted to get to America by crossing the Rio Grande river were two of several deaths on the border in recent days. They were part of the latest surge following President Trump's threat to impose tariffs on Mexican exports which put pressure on America's southern neighbour to step up patrols of its border. That's led to some migrants taking more dangerous routes in their efforts to reach the United States, pundits say. The Ramírezes story has been picked up by campaigners to illustrate the broader issue.
*This image is confronting so go carefully.
DIALING UP SOME ALLIES ON PHONES IN SCHOOLS
Look, you had every right to be sceptical, but as PM Scott Morrison riffed on election night, miracles can happen… The Federal (Coalition) Government has backed the Victorian (Labor) Government’s ban of mobile phones from the state’s public schools. Ta-dah… In an effort to tackle cyberbullying and improve learning outcomes, Victoria's primary and secondary school kids will be forbidden from having a phone with them during the school day from the start of the 2020 school year. But some experts and parents said it was overkill. And then there are the students… "It's not going to work for me," said one of Melbourne's inner city schoolgirls in what is our new favourite saying.
APROPOS OF NOTHING
Smart partnership or “someone’s taking the… pinot gris”? Grog retailer BWS is sponsoring Dry July.
Breakdancing. It could be coming to an Olympics near you…
And UK prime ministerial hopeful Boris Johnson spends his downtime pursuing an unexpected pastime…
SQUIZ THE DAY
ABS Data Releases - Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth, March; Recorded Crime Victims, 2018
Djibouti Independence Day (where?)
Anniversary of Helen Keller’s birthday (1880)
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