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Australian fraudster fails to argue ‘racist’ jurors called her a ‘bogan’

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australian fraudster fails to argue racist jurors called her a bogan

A New South Wales childcare operator behind bars over a $3.6 million government benefits fraud has failed to overturn her conviction after judges said the term ‘bogan’ was not a racist description.

Melissa Jade Higgins contended her guilty verdicts should be set aside because multiple jurors may have exhibited bias against her in the form of ‘racist and derogatory comments’ during her 2016 trial.

The then 29-year-old was jailed for seven years with a non-parole period of four years after being found guilty by a District Court jury of 81 offences – including 66 of obtaining financial advantage by deception.

Melissa Higgins (pictured) failed in a bid to have her conviction for fraud overturned after arguing jurors were 'racist' for calling her a 'bogan'

Melissa Higgins (pictured) failed in a bid to have her conviction for fraud overturned after arguing jurors were 'racist' for calling her a 'bogan'

Melissa Higgins (pictured) failed in a bid to have her conviction for fraud overturned after arguing jurors were ‘racist’ for calling her a ‘bogan’

Her scam involved wrongly claiming $3.6 million in government benefits through her Aussie Giggles childcare centre in Albury between September 2013 and March 2015.

She will be eligible for release on parole in May 2021.

The New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal on Thursday dismissed her convictions challenge, ruling she had not established that a juror irregularity deprived her of a fair trial.

The court adjourned her appeal in October 2018 so a New South Wales sheriff’s officer could carry out an investigation after a juror reported hearing ‘racist and derogatory’ remarks about Higgins during the trial.

The investigator conducted interviews with all the jurors and reported back to the appeal court.

The juror who first reported the matter recalled the remark ‘lock her up and throw away the keys’ but could not remember any racial comments being made about the accused.

One juror recalled more than one person saying something like ‘how can a bogan rip off the system like this’ and ‘Oh my god how is someone from the country able to outsmart the government”.

The New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal (pictured) dismissed Higgins convictions challenge on Thursday

The New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal (pictured) dismissed Higgins convictions challenge on Thursday

The New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal (pictured) dismissed Higgins convictions challenge on Thursday

Justices Mark Leeming, Ian Harrison and Peter Hamill noted none of the jurors nominated any specific racist remark having been made and many denied they heard any racist remark at all.

‘The word bogan is not a racist description,’ Justice Harrison said.

Justice Hamill agreed, saying while the remark may be considered unfortunate, it bore no logical connection to the suggestion of pre-judgment or bias.

‘To the contrary, some of the material suggests that one or more members of the jury may have thought the applicant’s lack of sophistication – a quality I take to be implicit in the description of a person as a bogan – made it less likely that they could perpetuate the fraud that was alleged,’ he said.

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Australia

People reveal their biggest regrets from drinking too much alcohol

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people reveal their biggest regrets from drinking too much alcohol

Many party-goers know the feeling of regretting something they’ve done the night before – so spare a thought for these poor people who’ve woken up with more than just a sore head.

Whisper users from around the world have contributed anonymous confessions of things they regret doing while under the influence to a hilarious thread about behaving out of character.

Many admitted they found the courage to make a romantic move on a friend but more often than not, they were rejected.  

A woman who lives in Minnesota said she sent sexual text messages to a male friend along with graphic photographs, after drunkenly forgetting that he has a girlfriend. 

Another shared the misfortune of setting their passport on fire while on holiday in South America. 

People from around the world shared their biggest regrets from getting blackout drunk, including a woman from Minnesota who sent sexual text messages to a male friend

People from around the world shared their biggest regrets from getting blackout drunk, including a woman from Minnesota who sent sexual text messages to a male friend

People from around the world shared their biggest regrets from getting blackout drunk, including a woman from Minnesota who sent sexual text messages to a male friend

One person who didn't disclose their location, said they wet themselves while drunk and accidentally put their sheets in the toilet instead of the washing machine

One person who didn't disclose their location, said they wet themselves while drunk and accidentally put their sheets in the toilet instead of the washing machine

One person who didn’t disclose their location, said they wet themselves while drunk and accidentally put their sheets in the toilet instead of the washing machine 

Another individual who lives in California, confessed to eating an entire bowl of ranch dip, shooting fireworks in front of their house and running around half naked

Another individual who lives in California, confessed to eating an entire bowl of ranch dip, shooting fireworks in front of their house and running around half naked

Another individual who lives in California, confessed to eating an entire bowl of ranch dip, shooting fireworks in front of their house and running around half naked 

A woman who didn't share her location, revealed that she was rejected after drunkenly making a move on her best friend

A woman who didn't share her location, revealed that she was rejected after drunkenly making a move on her best friend

A woman who didn’t share her location, revealed that she was rejected after drunkenly making a move on her best friend

A woman from Boston, said she attended a party with a man she was dating and ended up kissing two other men in front of him

A woman from Boston, said she attended a party with a man she was dating and ended up kissing two other men in front of him

A woman from Boston, said she attended a party with a man she was dating and ended up kissing two other men in front of him

Another anonymous individual confessed to lighting their passport on fire while on holiday in South America after getting blackout drunk

Another anonymous individual confessed to lighting their passport on fire while on holiday in South America after getting blackout drunk

Another anonymous individual confessed to lighting their passport on fire while on holiday in South America after getting blackout drunk

An individual from New York, shared how their friend woke up in a hotel with his trousers on backwards and money in his pocket after drinking too much

An individual from New York, shared how their friend woke up in a hotel with his trousers on backwards and money in his pocket after drinking too much

An individual from New York, shared how their friend woke up in a hotel with his trousers on backwards and money in his pocket after drinking too much 

Another person from Louisiana, revealed they once passed out in a bathtub filled with water and woke up to discover their friends had left

Another person from Louisiana, revealed they once passed out in a bathtub filled with water and woke up to discover their friends had left

Another person from Louisiana, revealed they once passed out in a bathtub filled with water and woke up to discover their friends had left

A woman from New Hampshire, confessed that she spent a night with her best friend and her husband because she drank too much

A woman from New Hampshire, confessed that she spent a night with her best friend and her husband because she drank too much

A woman from New Hampshire, confessed that she spent a night with her best friend and her husband because she drank too much

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Australia

Three-metre saltwater crocodile breaks into a suburban backyard

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three metre saltwater crocodile breaks into a suburban backyard

A three-metre saltwater crocodile has been caught crawling under fences and breaking into suburban backyards before devouring a stray dog.

Luke Newton was enjoying a coffee on Sunday morning in his hometown of Gunbalanya, east of Darwin in the Northern Territory, when he was called to catch the giant reptile from a private property.

Though he initially assumed it was a smaller crocodile, Mr Newtown arrived to find the beast frantically trying to escape the scene of excited children and dogs under a wire fence, the NT News reported.

Mr Newtown arrived to find the enormous beast frantically trying to escape the scene of excited children and dogs under a wire fence (pictured)

Mr Newtown arrived to find the enormous beast frantically trying to escape the scene of excited children and dogs under a wire fence (pictured)

Mr Newtown arrived to find the enormous beast frantically trying to escape the scene of excited children and dogs under a wire fence (pictured)

It took the crocodile catcher and three eager volunteers about an hour and a half to ensnare the reptile, wind tape around its mouth and claws for protection, and drop it off at a billabong.

Mr Newton said it looked healthy and fully, suggesting it may have eaten a stray dog on its journey through the town.

‘It’s a danger to the community … you have camp dogs and kids everywhere it’s not ideal to have a three-metre croc running around,’ he told the publication.

Despite its great length, Mr Newton said the crocodile was no larger than others caught around the area.

‘This time of year we get a few wandering through. It’s not the first one and it won’t be the last,’ he said. 

He added that the most risky captures in the cramped spaces under homes and buildings.

It took the crocodile catcher and three eager volunteers about an hour and a half to ensnare the reptile and wind tape around its mouth and claws for protection (pictured)

It took the crocodile catcher and three eager volunteers about an hour and a half to ensnare the reptile and wind tape around its mouth and claws for protection (pictured)

It took the crocodile catcher and three eager volunteers about an hour and a half to ensnare the reptile and wind tape around its mouth and claws for protection (pictured)

Earlier in September, a woman in south-east Darwin watched more than 20 crocodiles gnash their teeth together as they fought over a dead cow.

Michele Bain said the cow was definitely dead by the time it was pulled into the water and appeared bloated, as though it had been drowned, with chunks of ‘black, slimy flesh, like the skin of a seal’.

As the crocodile feasted on the cow, more crocodiles slowly began to emerge.

‘There was lots of fighting and splashing – we’ve been going to that spot for years and we’ve never seen anything like it,’ she previously told Daily Mail Australia. 

‘There was lots of fighting and splashing – we’ve been going to that spot for years and we’ve never seen anything like it.’ 

WHAT IS A SALTWATER CROCODILE? 

  • Saltwater crocodiles are the largest of all living reptiles, growing up to 6m in length and weigh up to 1,000kg.
  • They typically remain motionless and camouflaged for very long periods, and are often mistaken for a partially submerged log.
  • Crocodiles are able to propel themselvs through the water at surprising speed up to speeds of around 18km/h.
  • With eyes and nostrils on top of their heads, they can remain mostly hidden beneath the surface of the water. 
  • Their mouths contains 40-60 large teeth designed to rip flesh off prey as food is swallowed whole.
  • Strictly carnivorous, they eats fish, birds, and even wallabies, water buffalo, cattle, flying foxes, crabs and turtles that venture near the water’s edge.
  • Most prey are ambushed and then drowned or swallowed whole. 
  • When hunting prey, they lie in wait, partially submerged or completely underwater.
  • Crocodiles inhabit the mangrove swamps, coastal marshes, and river mouths, around the top of Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland.
  • The saltwater crocodile can live to the age of 70 

Source: Australian Reptile Park

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This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Hindus urge IKEA Australia to withdraw an ad campaign for ‘mocking yoga and cultural appropriation’

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hindus urge ikea australia to withdraw an ad campaign for mocking yoga and cultural appropriation

Hindus expressed their outrage over an IKEA advert showing a woman in a yoga pose they allege is cultural appropriation and mocking the ancient practice.  

A representative for a global Hindu group is urging the global furniture behemoth to withdraw the recently launched Australian campaign video ‘IKEA product pose Yoga’ and apologise. 

The video features a woman dressed in white fitness clothes and doing various poses while a voiceover gives yoga instructions asking viewers to ‘follow Eve as she takes you through product pose yoga by IKEA.’ 

The video (pictured) features a woman dressed in white fitness clothes and doing various poses while a voiceover gives yoga instructions asking viewers to 'follow Eve as she takes you through product pose yoga by IKEA'

The video (pictured) features a woman dressed in white fitness clothes and doing various poses while a voiceover gives yoga instructions asking viewers to 'follow Eve as she takes you through product pose yoga by IKEA'

The video (pictured) features a woman dressed in white fitness clothes and doing various poses while a voiceover gives yoga instructions asking viewers to ‘follow Eve as she takes you through product pose yoga by IKEA’ 

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement from Nevada on Thursday, said the video 'trivialized the ancient and serious discipline of yoga'

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement from Nevada on Thursday, said the video 'trivialized the ancient and serious discipline of yoga'

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement from Nevada on Thursday, said the video ‘trivialized the ancient and serious discipline of yoga’ 

The model then displays 15 yoga-asanas associating each with an IKEA product, like ‘barbecue tongs’; with a background voice explaining ‘to quieten the internal fire we have awakened’; ending in Namaste with folded hands. 

Another advert features the woman pose matched with a cocktail martini glass.  

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, said in a statement from Nevada on Thursday, the video ‘trivialized the ancient and serious discipline of yoga.’  

Mr Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, said comparing one of the woman’s poses to a martini glass was ‘highly inappropriate.’ 

He claimed that the use Hindu traditions for commercial purposes was an insult to devotees of the practice because it was ‘religious appropriation’ and was ‘mocking serious spiritual practices.’ 

Mr Zed wants to see the advert withdrawn and apology from IKEA’s global management based in the Netherlands.  

Hinduism is the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 billion adherents, Mr Zed explains, adding its ‘rich philosophical thought should not be taken frivolously or ridiculed.’ 

‘In the Hindu faith, yoga is considered union with God and one of the six systems of Hindu philosophy, and mean for transforming consciousness and purification of the Self and attaining liberation,’ Mr Zed explains. 

In a statement to Daily Mail Australia, a spokesperson for IKEA said the company did not intend to offend Hindus with the advert.  

‘IKEA Australia did not intend for any offence to be caused as a result of the creative of this campaign,’ the spokesperson said.  

Mr Zed wants to see the advert withdrawn and apology from IKEA's global management based in the Netherlands

Mr Zed wants to see the advert withdrawn and apology from IKEA's global management based in the Netherlands

Mr Zed wants to see the advert withdrawn and apology from IKEA’s global management based in the Netherlands 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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