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Inside Buddy Franklin’s AFL ‘quarantine’ hub looks like as Sydney Swans prepare to end season

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inside buddy franklins afl quarantine hub looks like as sydney swans prepare to end season

AFL superstar Buddy Franklin has shared a rare eyeopening insight into the Sydney Swans’ five star quarantine hub in Far North Queensland.

The club has spent much of the coronavirus-disrupted season on the road and have been based at the beachside five-star Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort in Port Douglas for the last three weeks.

Despite being sidelined with an ongoing hamstring injury, Franklin has joined his teammates for the road trip and is making the most of luxury resort facilities while being away from home.

He’s been apart from wife Jesinta and baby daughter Tullulah since July, who remain back in in Sydney.

On Thursday, the 300-game AFL star posted a photo soaking up the sunshine as he chilled out in one of the resort’s massive lagoon saltwater pools with fellow Swans stars Tom Papley, Ryan Clarke and Justin McInerney.

Buddy Franklin (second left with Swans teammates) is lapping up the amenities at the Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort

Buddy Franklin (second left with Swans teammates) is lapping up the amenities at the Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort

Buddy Franklin (second left with Swans teammates) is lapping up the amenities at the Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort

The 300-game superstar also took time out to visit a local butterfly sanctuary

The 300-game superstar also took time out to visit a local butterfly sanctuary

The 300-game superstar also took time out to visit a local butterfly sanctuary

The injured superstar also kicked a Sherrin around with his Sydney Swans teammates

The injured superstar also kicked a Sherrin around with his Sydney Swans teammates

The injured superstar also kicked a Sherrin around with his Sydney Swans teammates

A day earlier, Franklin shared photos of a relaxed game of touch footy with teammates, a visit to a local butterfly sanctuary and boarding a flight.

‘In the hub,’ he captioned the photos.

The Fremantle Dockers and Melbourne Demons have also been based at the Port Douglas AFL quarantine hub in recent weeks.

Last week, Dockers captain Nat Fyfe uploaded a selection of pictures from a picturesque waterfall along with fellow teammates.

The five-star Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort (pictured) has been a home away from home for a host of AFL stars in recent weeks

The five-star Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort (pictured) has been a home away from home for a host of AFL stars in recent weeks

The five-star Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort (pictured) has been a home away from home for a host of AFL stars in recent weeks

Tourism bosses in the region have hailed the AFL hub as an early Christmas gift for sports fans in Far North Queensland.

An hour’s drive north of Cairns, Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort is the only property with beachfront access to Port Douglas’ Four Mile Beach. 

Amenities include two hectares of sparkling saltwater lagoon pools, an 18-hole golf course while some rooms have with private/swim out balconies.

Franklin hasn’t played a single game in 2020 due to injury to add to his 944 career goals, having played just 10 games in 2019.

The 15th-placed Swans have won just five games in 2020 and hope to end their season on a high note with an upset win against the Geelong Cats on the Gold Coast on Sunday.

The luxury beachfront resort in Port Douglas has not one but two saltwater lagoon pools

The luxury beachfront resort in Port Douglas has not one but two saltwater lagoon pools

The luxury beachfront resort in Port Douglas has not one but two saltwater lagoon pools

Sydney Swans teammate Justin McInerney takes a poolside selfie at the five star resort

Sydney Swans teammate Justin McInerney takes a poolside selfie at the five star resort

Sydney Swans teammate Justin McInerney takes a poolside selfie at the five star resort

It comes after 400 AFL players and officials flew into Queensland from coronavirus-riddled Victoriaa fortnight ago after being given approval to dodge the state’s lockdown. 

AFL WAGs and officials were spotted living it up in ‘hotel quarantine’ – sipping cocktails by the pool and enjoying drinks at the bar each night at their luxury Gold Coast resort.

The vision is a world away from the experience of other travellers who have desperately fought to enter Queensland. 

The Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort is located an hour's drive north of Cairns. Pictured is one of the lavish five-star rooms

The Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort is located an hour's drive north of Cairns. Pictured is one of the lavish five-star rooms

The Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort is located an hour’s drive north of Cairns. Pictured is one of the lavish five-star rooms

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‘Maybe Clintons won’t get away with it’: Trump retweets after probe into Russia-gate expands

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maybe clintons wont get away with it trump retweets after probe into russia gate

Donald Trump said last night ‘maybe the Clintons won’t get away with it after all’ after federal prosecutor John Durham’s probe into the FBI’s Russia investigation expanded to look into alleged corruption at the Clinton Foundation.

Durham, put in charge of the Russia-gate review by Attorney General William Barr, has sought evidence about federal investigations from around the same time which were looking into the Clinton Foundation, sources told The New York Times.

Durham’s team has revealed that they are comparing the two investigations, as well as looking at whether the Russia inquiry investigators broke the law.

It was not clear whether Durham’s officials were looking into similar allegations at the Clinton Foundation or to what extent it would feature in the conclusions of his inquiry.

Trump last night retweeted conservative commentator David J Harris Jr, who shared a link to an article about the latest developments, writing ‘Maybe the Clintons won’t get away it after all.’ 

John Durham

John Durham

Hillary and Bill Clinton

Hillary and Bill Clinton

John Durham’s (left) inquiry is now also looking into the Clinton Foundation (Hillary and Bill, right) probe – which was contemporaneous but separate to the Russia probe which was previously thought to be his subject matter

Durham’s approach is ‘highly unusual,’ sources told the Times, and the inclusion of the Clinton investigation suggests that his scope is much broader than previously thought.

The Russia probe – into foreign election interference – and the Clinton Foundation inquiry – into alleged bribery and corruption – differ substantively and have involved largely different investigators and prosecutors.

It comes amid fears by Trump’s opponents that Durham’s work is being weaponized politically.

Democrats last week called on the Justice Department’s inspector general to look at whether Durham’s inquiry was impartial after one of his top lieutenants resigned, reportedly over concerns that their findings would be dropped before election day.

The Clinton Foundation probe started five years ago under the Obama administration and has not resulted in criminal charges to date.

In a statement the foundation said: ‘The Clinton Foundation has regularly been subjected to baseless, politically motivated allegations, and time after time these allegations have been proven false.’

Republicans have claimed that the FBI’s top brass and the DoJ under Barack Obama gave preferential treatment to the Clintons.

They accuse the organizations of taking an overtly political stance against Trump while showing reluctance to investigate allegations about the Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton – particularly her use of a private email server as Secretary of State.

‘There was a clear double standard by the Department of Justice and FBI when it came to the Trump and Clinton campaigns in 2016,’ Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsay Graham said in August.

Durham’s investigation has produced one criminal case so far against an FBI lawyer for attempting to secure a wiretap to eavesdrop on a former Trump adviser.

US President Donald J. Trump holds a news briefing in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC on Sunday, September 27, 2020

US President Donald J. Trump holds a news briefing in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC on Sunday, September 27, 2020

US President Donald J. Trump holds a news briefing in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC on Sunday, September 27, 2020

Former FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith pleaded guilty in August to falsifying a document to justify surveillance of Trump campaign adviser Carter Page as part of the Russia probe.

It was not clear at the time whether Clinesmith had flipped and was assisting Durham’s investigation. 

Sen. Graham last week teased the newly reported scope of Durham’s investigation, telling Sean Hannity on Fox News to ‘stay tuned.’

‘You think you are mad about the phones being wiped?’ Graham said. ‘We’ll talk in about 10 or 12 days and we’ll see if there is something else you can get mad about.’

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Teenager who attacked his TWELVE-year-old girlfriend with a machete avoids jail 

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teenager who attacked his twelve year old girlfriend with a machete avoids jail

A teenager who hacked at his 12-year-old girlfriend with a machete because she ‘didn’t listen to him’ has avoided jail.

The then 16-year-old, who cannot be named due to legal reasons, pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory to attacking his then-girlfriend in October 2018.

He had been sniffing aerosols on the Galiwinku oval with the girl, who he had been in a relationship for about six months, in the early hours of October 30, 2018.

The 12-year-old girl was not intoxicated and began to walk home, NT News reported.

A teenager who viciously hacked at his 12-year-old girlfriend with a machete because she 'didn't listen to him' has avoided jail

A teenager who viciously hacked at his 12-year-old girlfriend with a machete because she 'didn't listen to him' has avoided jail

A teenager who viciously hacked at his 12-year-old girlfriend with a machete because she ‘didn’t listen to him’ has avoided jail

As the girl was leaving another child ‘found’ a machete, the court heard.

The boy said: ‘Give me that machete because I have to bash that little girl for not listening to me’.

The boy then followed the girl and hit her in the upper arm with the weapon, the court heard.

She fell to the ground and the teenager stood over her and continued to assault her by swinging the knife ‘in a chopping motion’ to the girl’s face and head.

One of the girl’s friends pushed the 16-year-old away. 

Chief Justice Michael Grant acknowledged it was the only reason the attack stopped.

The 12-year-old was airlifted to Royal Darwin Hospital for emergency surgery for the severe lacerations to her skull and arms, broken knuckles and severed tendons in both hands.

She was required to stay in hospital for a month and needed both splints and hand therapy to regain full function of her hands.

Chief Justice Grant said without the quick action from specialists at the hospital the girl may have lost the use of both hands, or died.

The girl still suffers from pins and needles as well as stuff and numb hands. 

‘What you did has obviously had a terrible impact on the victim, including in ways that we would not necessarily expect,’ he told the teenager.

The then 16-year-old, who cannot be named due to legal reasons, pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory to attacking his girlfriend at the time in October 2018

The then 16-year-old, who cannot be named due to legal reasons, pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory to attacking his girlfriend at the time in October 2018

The then 16-year-old, who cannot be named due to legal reasons, pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory to attacking his girlfriend at the time in October 2018

‘When she was recovering, she could not feed, bathe or dress herself. Her big sister had to do that for her, which caused them both shame for cultural reasons.’ 

Chief Justice Grant acknowledged the teenager had since been diagnosed with an intellectual disability but said he had not accepted ‘how serious the offending was’.

The chief justice also said the teenager did not realise the impact his actions had on the girl or felt any remorse.

‘When asked about the offending during the course of a psychiatric assessment, you sought to attribute blame for what happened to your friends urging you to hit the girl,’ he said. 

The teenager was given a suspended sentence after spending four months in jail before being bailed in March last year.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Why it pays to scrutinise the small print on Airbnb to avoid a lengthy dispute

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why it pays to scrutinise the small print on airbnb to avoid a lengthy dispute

Airbnb may seem to have been around for ages, yet the online home-share service founded in San Francisco is only 12 years old.

And this year, the revolutionary online system of booking accommodation from private hosts has faced its toughest challenge.

With travel curtailed owing to Government restrictions, Airbnb decided to refund customers who could not complete their pre-paid stays, costing the company a staggering £774 million. A further £194 million was set aside to cover a quarter of the costs of the 700,000-plus hosts across the globe.

With travel curtailed owing to Government restrictions, Airbnb decided to refund customers who could not complete their pre-paid stays, costing the company a staggering £774 million

With travel curtailed owing to Government restrictions, Airbnb decided to refund customers who could not complete their pre-paid stays, costing the company a staggering £774 million

With travel curtailed owing to Government restrictions, Airbnb decided to refund customers who could not complete their pre-paid stays, costing the company a staggering £774 million 

However, these refunds — which were offered even though Airbnb does not usually make such payments — were for bookings made prior to March 15 for travel up until October 31. Now this period is coming to an end, what’s the latest?

The Mail has been contacted by hosts who have had payments delayed. Users have also been in touch to complain about service fees being withheld for bookings cancelled because of Covid. Others have expressed dissatisfaction with slow customer service.

This may be because a quarter of its staff, almost 2,000 people, is being cut due to a bookings slump caused by the pandemic.

The downturn has been so severe that Airbnb initially shelved plans for a £23 billion stock market flotation in the U.S. earlier this year (only to perform a U-turn last month to announce the flotation will go ahead). But what does it all mean for the customer?

Q. What happens if I make an overseas Airbnb booking and the country I’m going to is subsequently put on the quarantine list?

A. If you cancel because of Covid complications (of any sort), you are not automatically due a refund. Only those with bookings made before March 15 are eligible for one under Airbnb’s ‘extenuating circumstances’ rules, and customers must provide supporting documentation.

Q. But I booked after March 15, so what will happen to the money I paid out?

A. This depends on the cancellation policy of your host — which is why it is crucial to check the small print before you make any Airbnb booking.

There are huge differences. Some hosts offer full refunds (and the return of the ‘service fee’) for any cancellation made 24 hours before travel. Others will only offer 50 per cent refunds when breaks are cancelled at least 60 days in advance. You can set a filter for a ‘flexible’ cancellation policy, as in the first example.

If you cancel an Airbnb booking because of Covid complications (of any sort), you are not automatically due a refund

If you cancel an Airbnb booking because of Covid complications (of any sort), you are not automatically due a refund

If you cancel an Airbnb booking because of Covid complications (of any sort), you are not automatically due a refund

Q. I’m confused about service fees and cleaning fees — how do they fit into this?

A. Service fees are added to bookings to cover Airbnb’s administrative costs (usually less than 14 per cent of the booking). Cleaning fees are completely separate and are initially within the advertised nightly rate, although they are listed individually at the payment stage.

The cleaning fee is returned if a guest cancels before check-in. The service fee is sometimes refunded, depending on the reservation policy. See airbnb.co.uk/home/cancellation_policies.

Q. Why aren’t cleaning fees simply incorporated in the main price?

A. Yes, it would be a lot easier that way, but this is how Airbnb likes to do it.

Q. Where is all this small print to be found?

A. At the bottom of the home page of each property listing. It is also repeated at the check-out stage.

Q. What if I have a problem with a refund?

A. Contact the 24-hour help centre at airbnb.co.uk/help/home, or send a message on Twitter at @AirbnbHelp.

Q. What if I have booked a large property for more than six people?

A. This depends on whether you are travelling in the UK or abroad. The social distancing laws of your overseas destination will apply.

In the UK, you should cancel the booking or reduce the number of people in your party. Airbnb advises customers to contact hosts directly regarding cancellation or rebooking options.

Anyone with a ‘flexible’ policy would be able to cancel with a full refund 24 hours before, or those with a ‘moderate’ policy, five days before.

Q. If I have a booking of more than six people and the cancellation rules mean I will lose a lot of my money, this cannot be right?

A. All Airbnb would say on this, when pressed, is that cancellation rules will apply. It is a grey area that is possibly open to legal dispute as the Competition and Markets Authority, the consumer watchdog, says that people should expect a full refund ‘if no goods or services are provided by a business because this is prevented by the lockdown laws’.

Since the lockdown travellers have started using Airbnb again, with many preferring to stay in a private apartment over a hotel (stock image)

Since the lockdown travellers have started using Airbnb again, with many preferring to stay in a private apartment over a hotel (stock image)

Since the lockdown travellers have started using Airbnb again, with many preferring to stay in a private apartment over a hotel (stock image)

Q. Why does Airbnb have so many different cancellation rules?

A. This allows hosts with larger properties to protect themselves against customers cancelling at the last minute — leaving them unable to re-book properties.

Q. What if I go to a property and find it is dirty, or not as pictured on the website?

A. You can contact Airbnb within 24 hours of arrival, and you will be re-booked in an equal standard, or better, accommodation, or refunded 100 per cent of your booking.

Q. Have new cleaning methods with sanitisation been introduced during the pandemic?

A. Yes. An Enhanced Cleaning Protocol has been introduced, informed by the European Centre For Disease Prevention And Control, and approved by the World Travel & Tourism Council.

Q. Since the lockdown, have people started using the service again?

A. Yes. In fact, many travellers seem to prefer staying in a private apartment to a hotel. During a three-day period in June, Airbnb reported more bookings than in the whole of April.

Brian Chesky, Airbnb’s co-founder and CEO, says: ‘There’s a definite pull towards homes right now. Families want a kitchen where they can cook together and a pool where they can relax together.’

A spokeswoman also pointed out that people should have confidence in using Airbnb, especially after the consumer champion Which? added Airbnb to its list of travel companies it recommends in the summer. 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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