The Northern Territory news Thu 8 Jul 2010
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www.ntnews.com.au Northern Territory News, Thursday, July 8, 2010 9 P U B : N T N E W S D A T E : 8 -J U L -2 0 1 0 P A G E : 9 C O L O R : C M Y K e r0 2 0 4 0 2 / 1 0 Are you a Performer and like Operetta? OperatuNiTy.Inc is holding auditions for their forthcoming production of The Merry Widow directed by Kathy Banks on Saturday, 17 July. For information and audition time call 8945 0935. Visit our web site at www.operant.org.au NATION Cops rape charge SYDNEY: A Sydney police officer who allegedly raped two young girls faced court yesterday. Gregory Ernest Urch, who turns 60 today, appeared in Parramatta Local Court to answer 16 charges. The charges, allegedly committed during a fouryear period, include sexual intercourse without consent, aggravated sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault and committing an act of indecency. Sydney blackout SYDNEY: NSW Premier Kristina Keneally has come under fire for a massive blackout that cut power to 50,000 homes across northern Sydney. Trains were delayed and traffic lights blacked out, many on major road arteries, causing commuter chaos yesterday. Opposition infrastructure spokesman Brad Hazzard has accused successive Labor leaders of failing to upgrade infrastructure and ripping cash out of energy firms, preventing them from improving the grid. Charges dropped MELBOURNE: Three Melbourne men accused of pack-raping a woman have had all charges against them dismissed yesterday. Reuben Mineo, 19, Trent Cantwell, 19, and Jack Reade, 20, were accused of raping a woman on Phillip Island in October last year. The three men were on a trip with their suburban football club teammates. Cold case revived BRISBANE: Queensland police hope new technology will turn up fresh evidence in a forensic search of the home of murder victim Leanne Holland, 19 years after she was slain. Forensic experts are again combing the house in Goodna, where the 12-yearold schoolgirl lived. She disappeared on September 23, 1991. Her severely battered body was found in bushland three days later. Restaurant crash PERTH: A car smashed through the front of a restaurant in the Perth CBD yesterday afternoon, injuring five diners. It crashed into the Matsuri Japanese restaurant after hitting a bus, a St Johns Ambulance spokesperson said. Too few roos left SYDNEY: Canberras annual kangaroo cull is destroying too many animals and the practice is inhumane, protesters say. Carrying a coffin with a blow-up roo on top, about 40 protesters marched to the steps of NSW Parliament House to the sounds of Leonard Cohens song Hallelujah yesterday. Captain in court BRISBANE: A captain has been committed to stand trial over a March 2009 oil spill off Queenslands coast. Pacific Adventurer Captain Bernardino Gonzales Santos will stand trial in the Brisbane District Court, alongside Swire Navigation Company Ltd and Bluewind Shipping Ltd, co-owners of the Pacific Adventurer. Gillard pays tribute to Faulkners great defence QUITTING:Minister for Defence Senator John Faulkner announces yesterday that he will return to the backbench after the next Federal election ByBEN LANGFORD inDarwin PRIME Minister Julia Gillard has praised outgoing Defence Minister John Faulkner, who has announced he will quit the job after the election. Senator Faulkner said he wanted to quit politics altogether but was persuaded by Ms Gillard to seek re-election and then return to the backbench. His decision to quit is a huge blow to the Gillard government, which is losing one of its leading figures on the eve of an election being called. It comes after Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner, another of the partys leaders, announced he would quit at the election. Senator Faulkner has long been one of the Labor Partys elder statesmen. He was the minister seen by Ms Gillards side as she walked into Kevin Rudds office last month to tell him she would challenge for the leadership. He also brought stability to the Defence portfolio after former minister Joel Fitzgibbons relationship with his department broke down. Mr Faulkner said the leadership change had nothing to do with his decision and Ms Gillard had his absolute support. At Darwins naval base HMAS Coonawarra yesterday Ms Gillard said Mr Faulkner had done a great job. John has done a great job as defence minister and enjoys the respect of all those who have worked with him. John is a legendary Labor party and labour movement figure, she said. Hes devoted 30 years of his life to active political involvement full-time. Ms Gillard said she pleaded with Senator Faulkner to stay in the parliament and not quit altogether. What Ive asked him to do, Ive prevailed upon him to do, and hes agreed to do, is to seek re-election as a senator and to stay in the parliament, she said. Hes a very senior person, a very wise head. Senator Faulkner said Defence had become more accountable and efficient. Accident haunts Cannon FAMILY NIGHTMARE: Brendan and Fiona Cannon at a media conference yesterday BRISBANE: Former Wallabies hooker Brendan Cannon says hell be forever haunted by the thought he could have killed his youngest son. Cannon reversed his four-wheel drive over his 16-month-old son Samuel in the driveway of the familys Brisbane home on Saturday. Paramedics had feared Samuel would die, but hes making steady progress in Brisbanes Royal Childrens Hospital and Cannon says the latest prognosis is a full recovery. The little boy has a lot of healing to do. Both of his legs were broken and he suffered internal injuries. His lower body is in a cast stretching from under his ribcage to his toes. Every day that Sam has recovered and has shown such amazing resilience ... has helped me, Cannon said. Gun found in dead mums crashed car By LISAMARTIN in Brisbane POLICE have found a gun in a wrecked ute driven by a Queensland mother suspected of killing her baby son and wounding her former husband. The woman, 22, died in hospital following the crash, which happened soon after the eight-month-old baby and a man were shot at a house at Gracemere, near Rockhampton, on Tuesday night. Rockhampton police inspector John Wacker said a small handgun had been found in the ute the woman was driving. The ute belonged to the injured 36-year-old man. The woman sustained massive head injuries when the vehicle hit a tree on Upper Dawson Rd, in Rockhamptons south at about 8pm (AEST), 10km from the shooting scene. She died at Rockhampton Base Hospital hours later. A firearm was located at the crash scene, Insp Wacker told reporters yesterday. The local community is shocked at what has transpired at the address. Insp Wacker said the mother and father divorced late last year. Police have spoken to the injured man in hospital but would not comment on his version of events. He is in a stable condition after undergoing surgery for a gunshot wound to the stomach, police said. Police said a neighbour found the infant inside the Zamia Way home after the injured man staggered outside seeking help. They said the baby was taken to the home of a neighbouring off-duty ambulance officer for treatment before paramedics arrived. The baby was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital. Other neighbours in the street have told of hearing a gunshot. We only heard one gunshot, but apparently there were more, Jodiee Bennett, 35, who lives opposite the house where the shootings happened, said. A man went in there and found the little fella on the floor. They thought he had hit his head on the tiles, but apparently that was one of the gunshot wounds that the baby copped in the head.