NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals | There are renewed calls for laws to prohibit child strip searches in NSW, after data obtained under freedom of information laws reveals 122 underage g

NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals

NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals

NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals

NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals

NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals

NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals
NSW Police strip searched 120 underage girls in past three years, data reveals
  • By: ABC News (AU)
  • Views 13,436

NSW Police Minister says he would want officers to strip-search his children

Updated November 06, 2019 11:03:27

NSW Police Minister defends use of strip searchesVideo: NSW Police Minister defends use of strip searches (ABC News)

NSW Police Minister David Elliot says he "would want" officers to strip search his children, after new data revealed 122 underage girls had been subjected to the practice since 2016.

Key points:

  • The practice of strip searching children continues to come under the microscope in NSW
  • NSW Attorney-General Mark Speakman has defended the use of strip searches
  • Under normal circumstances, children in NSW can be strip searched only with a parent, guardian or support person present

The numbers, obtained under freedom of information laws, showed two of the 122 children were just 12 years old and eight were 13 years old.

Mr Elliot today defended NSW Police's ability to strip-search children, which has been put under the microscope in NSW this year.

Last month, the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC) held an inquiry into the strip-search of a 16-year-old girl at a music festival.

While giving evidence at the inquiry, the officer who conducted the search conceded it was likely unlawful.

"I've got young children and if I thought the police felt they were at risk of doing something wrong I'd want them strip-searched," Mr Elliott said today.

"Having been Minister for Juvenile Justice, we have 10-year-olds involved in terrorism activity."

In regular circumstances, police can strip search children between the ages of 10 and 18 in NSW only while a parent, guardian or support person present.

However, if police believe evidence may be at risk of being destroyed and the circumstances are "urgent", they can search the child while a parent or guardian is not there.

The new data was sourced by the Redfern Legal Centre (RLC).

RLC's head of police accountability, Samantha Lee, said the laws should be changed to prohibit the use of strip searches on children unless a court order had been obtained.

"We don't know the circumstances of these particular cases, they are just raw data," she said.

"But certainly they do highlight some major concerns in terms of the law and the fact that the law needs to change to protect all children from strip searches."

Mr Elliot acknowledged the searches aren't always appropriately used.

"Of course they haven't always been used according to the standard operating procedures and anybody who feels that has been done erroneously has got some reply to that," he said.

NSW Attorney-General Mark Speakman defended the use of strip searches but acknowledged the policy was being reviewed.

"Strip searches are an important investigative tool but obviously we have to get the balance right, they need to be used only where appropriate," he said.

"They can be invasive, they can be stressful, that's why we have the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission doing a general review of strip searches and operations in NSW and I look forward to its report."

Topics: police, crime, law-crime-and-justice, lismore-3324, sydney-2000

First posted November 06, 2019 09:44:50

Australia could fall apart under climate change. But there is a way to avoid it

Australia could fall apart under climate change. But there is a way to avoid it

Australia could fall apart under climate change. But there is a way to avoid it

Updated November 06, 2019 12:22:28

Four years ago in December 2015, every member of the United Nations met in Paris and agreed to hold global temperature increases to two degrees Celsius, and as close as possible to 1.5C.

The bad news is that four years on the best that we can hope for is holding global increases to around 1.75C. We can only do that if the world moves decisively towards zero net emissions by the middle of the century.

A failure to act here, accompanied by similar paralysis in other countries, would see our grandchildren living with temperature increases of around 4C this century, and more beyond.

I have spent my life on the positive end of discussion of Australian domestic and international policy questions.

But if effective global action on climate change fails, I fear the challenge would be beyond contemporary Australia. I fear that things would fall apart.

There is reason to hope

It's not all bad news.

What we know today about the effect of increased concentrations of greenhouse gases broadly confirms the conclusions I drew from available research in previous climate change reviews in 2008 and 2011.

I conducted these for, respectively, state and Commonwealth governments, and a federal cross-parliamentary committee.

But these reviews greatly overestimated the cost of meeting ambitious reduction targets.

There has been an extraordinary fall in the cost of equipment for solar and wind energy, and of technologies to store renewable energy to even out supply.

Per person, Australia has natural resources for renewable energy superior to any other developed country and far superior to our customers in north-east Asia.

Australia is by far the world's largest exporter of iron ore and aluminium ores.

In the main they are processed overseas, but in the post-carbon world we will be best positioned to turn them into zero-emission iron and aluminium.

In such a world, there will be no economic sense in any aluminium or iron smelting in Japan or Korea, not much in Indonesia, and enough to cover only a modest part of domestic demand in China and India.

The European commitment to early achievement of net-zero emissions opens a large opportunity there as well.

Converting one quarter of Australian iron oxide and half of aluminium oxide exports to metal would add more value and jobs than current coal and gas combined.

A natural supplier to the world's industry

With abundant low-cost electricity, Australia could grow into a major global producer of minerals needed in the post-carbon world, such as lithium, titanium, vanadium, nickel, cobalt and copper.

It could also become the natural supplier of pure silicon, produced from sand or quartz, for which there is fast-increasing global demand.

Other new zero-emissions industrial products will require little more than globally competitive electricity to create.

These include ammonia, exportable hydrogen and electricity transmitted by high-voltage cables to and through Indonesia and Singapore to the Asian mainland.

Australia's exceptional endowment of forests and woodlands gives it an advantage in biological raw materials for industrial processes.

And there's an immense opportunity for capturing and sequestering, at relatively low cost, atmospheric carbon in soils, pastures, woodlands, forests and plantations.

Modelling conducted for my first report suggested that Australia would import emissions reduction credits, however today I expect Australia to cut domestic emissions to the point that it sells excess credits to other nations.

The transition is an economic winner

Technologies to produce and store zero-emissions energy and sequester carbon in the landscape are highly capital-intensive.

They have therefore benefited exceptionally from the historic fall in global interest rates over the past decade. This has reduced the cost of transition to zero emissions, accentuating Australia's advantage.

In 2008 the comprehensive modelling undertaken for the Garnaut Review suggested the transition would entail a noticeable (but manageable) sacrifice of Australian income in the first half of this century, followed by gains that would grow late into the second half of this century and beyond.

Today, calculations using similar techniques would give different results.

Australia playing its full part in effective global efforts to hold warming to 2C or lower would show economic gains instead of losses in early decades, followed by much bigger gains later on.

If Australia is to realise its immense opportunity in a zero-carbon world, it will need a different policy framework.

But we can make a strong start even with the incomplete and weak policies and commitments we have.

Policies to help complete the transition can be built in a political environment that has been changed by early success.

Three crucial steps

Three early policy developments are needed. None contradicts established federal government policy.

First, the regulatory system has to focus strongly on the security and reliability of electricity supplies, as it comes to be drawn almost exclusively from intermittent renewable sources.

Second, the government must support transformation of the power transmission system to allow a huge expansion of supply from regions with high-quality renewable energy resources not near existing transmission cables.

This is likely to require new mechanisms to support private initiatives.

Third, the Commonwealth could secure a globally competitive cost of capital by underwriting new investment in reliable (or "firmed") renewable electricity.

This was a recommendation by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's retail electricity price inquiry, and has been adopted by the Morrison Government.

We must get with the Paris program

For other countries to import large volumes of low-emission products from us, we will have to accept and be seen as delivering on emissions reduction targets consistent with the Paris objectives.

Paris requires net-zero emissions by mid-century. Developed countries have to reach zero emissions before then, so their interim targets have to represent credible steps towards that conclusion.

Japan, Korea, the European Union and the United Kingdom are the natural early markets for zero-emissions steel, aluminium and other products.

China will be critically important. Indonesia and India and their neighbours in south-east and south Asia will sustain Australian exports of low-emissions products deep into the future.

For the European Union, reliance on Australian exports of zero-emissions products would only follow assessments that we were making acceptable contributions to the global mitigation effort.

We will not get to that place in one step, or soon. But likely European restrictions on imports of high-carbon products, which will exempt those made with low emissions, will allow us a good shot.

Movement will come gradually, initially with public support for innovation; then suddenly, as business and government leaders realise the magnitude of the Australian opportunity, and as humanity enters the last rush to avoid being overwhelmed by the rising costs of climate change.

The pace will be governed by progress in decarbonisation globally. That will suit us, as our new strengths in the zero-carbon world grow with the retreat of the old.

We have an unparalleled opportunity. We are more than capable of grabbing it.

Ross Garnaut is a professorial research fellow in economics at the University of Melbourne, chairs the international advisory board of the Australian German Energy Transition Hub and is a Distinguished Fellow of the Melbourne Energy Institute. He is chairman of, and a shareholder in, Sunshot Energy and a shareholder in SIMEC ZEN Energy, both of which are engaged in the development and trade of energy. He conducted the 2008 and 2011 climate reviews for the Rudd and Gillard governments. His book Superpower — Australia's Low-Carbon Opportunity, is published today by BlackInc with La Trobe University Press. This article originally appeared on The Conversation.

Topics: government-and-politics, pollution-disasters-and-safety, climate-change, environment, climate-change---disasters, environmental-policy, environmental-health, world-politics, australia

First posted November 06, 2019 07:00:59

'Clear case of excessive force': PNG police brutality caught on camera

'Clear case of excessive force': PNG police brutality caught on camera

Facebook video shows PNG police kicking, hitting and stomping on group of men

Updated November 06, 2019 10:17:47

Police were filmed striking the men with the butts of their rifles, kicking them and hitting them with sticks.Video: Police were filmed striking the men with the butts of their rifles, kicking them and hitting them with sticks. (ABC News)

Police in Papua New Guinea say they are investigating footage posted online showing officers kicking and stomping on a group of men in Port Moresby, before beating them repeatedly over the head with the ends of their rifles.

Key points:

  • The video shows three men lying in the middle of a road, being attacked by police
  • PNG's Police Minister has told the ABC the officers have been identified and suspended
  • Authorities are appealing for the victims and the person who took the video to come forward

The 18-minute video was posted on Facebook on Monday night, and appears to have been filmed across the street from the incident.

It shows three men lying on the road after apparently being apprehended by police. The police officers then kick the men, hit them with the butts of their guns and stomp on them.

One officer pulls the shirt off one of the men while punching him. The men on the ground do not appear to resist.

In a statement, PNG's Acting Police Commissioner, David Manning, said the incident appeared to be "a clear case of excessive force", and vowed to bring those responsible to justice.

"Whatever their alleged crimes, police had no right to assault the three persons like that," he said.

"I am shocked at the manner in which the policemen continued to assault the men as they lay defenceless on the ground.

"This behaviour is not expected of members of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary."

Two of the men are shown sitting up towards the end of the 20-minute clip, however their current condition is not known.

PNG Police Minister Bryan Kramer has told the ABC the officers involved have been identified and suspended.

The commander of Port Moresby's police force Anthony Wagambie Jr meanwhile told local media he was appealing to the person who shot the footage to come forward and make a statement to police.

He also called on the victims to come forward and provide statements and their medical records, to help internal investigators charge the officers involved.

Police brutality is a longstanding issue in Papua New Guinea, and authorities have previously come under fire for failing to properly investigate incidents when they occur.

Similar footage showing police assaulting a young man, who was pleading with the officers to stop, went viral last year and sparked an official investigation.

Topics: law-crime-and-justice, crime, police, papua-new-guinea, pacific

First posted November 06, 2019 09:59:40

Vinzent Tarantino found not guilty of murdering schoolgirl Quanne Diec

Vinzent Tarantino found not guilty of murdering schoolgirl Quanne Diec

Quanne Diec murder accused Vinzent Tarantino found not guilty

Updated November 06, 2019 11:57:50

A former nightclub bouncer Vinzent Tarantino has been found not guilty of murdering Sydney schoolgirl Quanne Diec in 1998.

Key points:

  • Mr Tarantino walked in to Surry Hills police station and confessed to the murder
  • That happened 18 years after Quanne Diec was last seen in 1998
  • His lawyers argued he made a false confession because he feared for his safety

Mr Tarantino faced a Supreme Court trial over the 12-year-old's alleged murder after she was last seen walking from her home in Granville to a railway station in July 1998.

The trial heard 18 years later, Mr Tarantino walked into a Sydney police station and confessed to the murder.

He also gave a detailed interview.

But the 52-year-old pleaded not guilty and his defence team argued he made the false confession because he feared for his safety and thought bikies were after him.

It took the jury almost six days to return a verdict of not guilty.

Outside court, Mr Tarantino said the media had an obligation to seek the truth.

"I haven't always seen that the last three years," he said.

"Maybe you should always look into the story a bit more."

Asked whether he felt vindicated, Mr Tarantino replied: "Not yet, but I will be."

He declined to elaborate.

Quanne's father Sam Diec told the court he left for work early on the morning she vanished and saw a white van driving slowly down their no through road.

During the trial, Mr Tarantino agreed he was driving a white van in Granville the morning Quanne Diec disappeared.

The court heard Mr Tarantino allegedly told a girlfriend he'd done something "really bad" during a "botched ransom" and the girl wasn't meant to die.

Jurors were told an ex-girlfriend, Laila Failey, will claim to have been present in a van allegedly used to dispose of the student's body.

But Mr Tarantino's barrister Belinda Rigg SC told the court Ms Failey has "jumped to conclusions" about what she saw.

Ms Rigg said the witness spoke to police shortly after the two broke up and was motivated by spite and a desire to "get back at" Mr Tarantino.

The police officer who first heard Mr Tarantino's confession, Constable Joshua Barnes, was on duty at Surry Hills police station in November 2016 when Mr Tarantino walked in to make the declaration.

Contable Barnes recalled Mr Tarantino said he needed to speak to someone and hand himself in for a homicide, adding it had been "building up" and was "all too much".

He said the driver stared at him strangely, and had high cheekbones and sunken eyes.

Mr Diec reported the matter to police but the court heard there was no record of his statement.

Topics: law-crime-and-justice, crime, murder-and-manslaughter, police

First posted November 06, 2019 11:16:25


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