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Australian Peter Gardner fronts Chinese court on drug smuggling charges


Guangzhou: An Australian man potentially facing the death penalty in China for allegedly trafficking methamphetamine says he thought he was merely carrying performance-enhancing peptides used for sport. In explosive and detailed testimony, Peter Gardner, 26, told a court in the southern metropolis of Guangzhou that he had been duped into being a drug mule by a sophisticated international smuggling syndicate ...

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‘Mousetrap': Sydney trains sniff out graffiti vandals with new technology


Sydney’s trains are being fitted with sniffing technology to catch graffiti vandals in the act.More than 30 offenders have already been caught under the scheme, which the state government is calling “mousetrap”.”This is innovative technology,” said Transport Minister Andrew Constance. “Mousetrap is on-board technology designed to scent the vapours of permanent markers, providing real-time information with the triggering of CCTV ...

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Auditor-general Grant Hehir highlights state’s $900 million in construction cost blow-outs


The auditor-general has rebuked the state government for its management of major construction projects, citing $900 million worth of recent blow-outs. A report released on Thursday by auditor Grant Hehir into large construction initiatives found that the cost of 50 major projects built between 2010 and 2014 increased by about 7 per cent, despite all projects including large “contingencies” for ...

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Bali executions: Raji Sukumaran’s heartbreaking letter to Indonesian President Joko Widodo


Myuran Sukumaran’s mother has written a heart-rending letter to Indonesian President Joko Wododo, the man who put her son to death. Her letter was both sorrowful and exacting as the grief that overwhelmed Raji Sukumaran during the traumatic hours before her son’s execution were fortified by anger.”I am not sure where you were as the men you ordered to kill ...

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Higher wages offered for fewer public service sickies


Federal public servants might win higher pay rises if they agree to take fewer sickies, as part of a softening of the Abbott government’s public sector bargaining rules. With wage talks in stalemate across the 160,000-strong Commonwealth bureaucracy, departmental bosses have been given a little more flexibility to try to break the impasse and can now put their workplaces’ soaring ...

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