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Watiress tells Grace Millane murder trial in New Zealand she asked defendant to choke her during sex

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The man accused of murdering British backpacker Grace Millane choked another woman during rough sex days before, a court heard today. 

The defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, went on a Tinder date with a waitress nine days before his fateful meeting with Grace, 22. 

She later served the pair cocktails on the night Grace, of Wickford, Essex, disappeared in Auckland, New Zealand late last year.   

The woman, who also cannot be named for legal reasons, told Auckland’s High Court she had matched with the 27-year-old alleged killer in November 2018. 

She said: ‘We asked each other what we preferred during sex and so I did mention that I liked rough sex and also choking.

‘He did say that he liked rough sex as well but I don’t remember if he said anything about choking.’ 

The defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is pictured flanked by corrections officers during the opening of the trial in Auckland, New Zealand

The defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is pictured flanked by corrections officers during the opening of the trial in Auckland, New Zealand

The defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is pictured flanked by corrections officers during the opening of the trial in Auckland, New Zealand

Grace Millane, 22, vanished during the early hours of her 22nd birthday while on a round-the-world trip in New Zealand. Her body was later found inside a suitcase, buried in the woods, a court has heard

Grace Millane, 22, vanished during the early hours of her 22nd birthday while on a round-the-world trip in New Zealand. Her body was later found inside a suitcase, buried in the woods, a court has heard

Grace Millane, (left after graduation) vanished during the early hours of her 22nd birthday while on a round-the-world trip in New Zealand

Questioned by prosecutor Brian Dickey, she said she had gone to man’s apartment at the CityLife apartment at 7pm on November 22 to meet him for the first time.

She bought a bottle of rum and the man, who also cannot be named for legal reasons, met her in the lobby. 

‘It was a nice place,’ she said. ‘We went up to his room and we started talking to each other. 

‘I had about four glasses of rum and coke and he drank about four bottles of Heineken. 

‘After he went to bathroom he kissed me and from there it went to the bed.’ 

During sex, she said, ‘he did choke me a bit because that’s a preference of mine, just one hand around my neck. 

Miss Millane's body was found in a wooded area near Auckland a week after she was last seen at a hotel in Auckland city centre, a court heard

Miss Millane's body was found in a wooded area near Auckland a week after she was last seen at a hotel in Auckland city centre, a court heard

Miss Millane’s body was found in a wooded area near Auckland a week after she was last seen at a hotel in Auckland city centre, a court heard

‘It was fine, it was consensual. My breath was a bit restricted but it was something that gave me pleasure. 

‘It wasn’t too hard that I gasping for air but it wasn’t so soft that I wouldn’t be able to feel it. It was the right pressure 

‘I didn’t have to push him off me. He let me go when I reached…’

The woman said after ordering in pizza and sharing it she had left the man asleep but tried to contact him again after realising she had left her glasses behind. 

But the alleged killer didn’t return them and she didn’t see him again until he walked into the bar where she worked on the night of December 1, this time with Grace, who he had also met through Tinder. 

‘He came in with a young lady and they walked across the bar to go to a table,’ she told the court. 

‘I wasn’t sure it was him until I saw the tattoo on his arm. ‘She looked European. She was wearing a black dress with shoulder length hair.’ 

The woman served the couple drinks and as he was paying, the woman told him how frustrating it was not to have to her glasses. 

Three days later, having buried Grace in a suitcase in remote woodland, he dropped the glasses off at the bar. 

Under cross-examination, the woman said when she first spoke to police about the date, which she described as ‘just a hook-up’, she had not mentioned the choking because she ‘just forgot’. 

The man denies murder. The trial continues. 

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2GB radio host Ben Fordham pens touching tribute to his late father John Fordham on Instagram

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Ben Fordham has written a tribute to his late father and described the final moments he spent with him before he died.

Talent agent John Fordham died of throat cancer aged 75 at a hospice in Darlinghurst, Sydney, on Sunday.

He was known as a powerhouse celebrity manager who worked with some of Australia’s most prominent personalities. 

As he drifted off, Mr Fordham was listening to his favourite Frank Sinatra song, My Way. 

His son, broadcaster Ben Fordham, posted a moving tribute to his father on social media where he described the man as ‘a mate’ and said ‘he was the best.’

‘If any of his family or friends or clients were in trouble, he’d go to war,’ Ben said.

John Fordham, a prominent talent agent and father to Ben Fordham (pictured together) has lost his long battle with throat cancer

John Fordham, a prominent talent agent and father to Ben Fordham (pictured together) has lost his long battle with throat cancer

John Fordham, a prominent talent agent and father to Ben Fordham (pictured together) has lost his long battle with throat cancer

The powerhouse talent agent had built a reputation as one of the country's most prolific and represented the likes of Kerri-Anne Kennerley (pictured together) John Laws, Alan Jones and Ian Chappell

The powerhouse talent agent had built a reputation as one of the country's most prolific and represented the likes of Kerri-Anne Kennerley (pictured together) John Laws, Alan Jones and Ian Chappell

The powerhouse talent agent had built a reputation as one of the country’s most prolific and represented the likes of Kerri-Anne Kennerley (pictured together) John Laws, Alan Jones and Ian Chappell 

Radio broadcaster, Ben Fordham, posted a moving tribute to his father on social media (pictured) where he described the man as 'a mate' and said 'he was the best'

Radio broadcaster, Ben Fordham, posted a moving tribute to his father on social media (pictured) where he described the man as 'a mate' and said 'he was the best'

Radio broadcaster, Ben Fordham, posted a moving tribute to his father on social media (pictured) where he described the man as ‘a mate’ and said ‘he was the best’

John Fordham spent his final days swapping racing tips with Alan Jones, and having a beer and a punt, The Daily Telegraph reported. 

He also continued working for his clients right until the very end.

‘He dictated a really heavy message on Saturday afternoon involving one of his clients in a contract negotiation,’ Ben Fordham said.

‘It was very robust, very stern to an employer and he was determined to get it resolved.’ 

Ben Fordman posted a tribute to his father on Twitter and Instagram, which was accompanied by a photo of the pair, smiling while Mr Fordham held a glass of wine. 

‘My dad has passed away. It was the most peaceful goodbye. We were all there with him and feel blessed. What a bloke,’ Ben Fordham said. 

‘When we were growing up, he spent every spare minute playing on the street with all of the neighbourhood kids.’

He said Mr Fordham was a man of great character and regularly donated to charities and established the Head and Neck Cancer Foundation. 

‘We’re going to miss him but thankfully we took every chance to tell him how much we love him. That’s the trick. No regrets.’

‘Today, Dad is being appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for his commitment to charity. RIP John Fordham.’

Rugby League Immortal Andrew Johns and radio personality John Laws were among the high-profile celebrities to visit the 75-year-old in his final hours. 

Mr Fordham worked with the likes of Johns, Ian Chappell, Mark Taylor, Lisa Wilkinson and Kerri-Anne Kennerley as a talent agent. 

Speaking with The Australian, Ben Fordham said his father had lived on his own terms until the very end. 

‘It’s a weird feeling but we’re not sad, we’re genuinely happy,’ he said. 

‘We’re a family who’s never felt afraid of telling each other we love each other, so none of us have that feeling of ”if only”. 

‘He chose his own exit, he choreographed the whole thing. I think he decided he wasn’t going to spend eight or nine months in a bed.’ 

He said the lasting legacy his father will have on him was what he taught him about ‘life, loyalty and having a go’. 

Ben Fordham said the lasting legacy his father will have had on him was teaching him the true value of 'life, loyalty and having a go' (Mr Fordham pictured with his grandson Freddy)

Ben Fordham said the lasting legacy his father will have had on him was teaching him the true value of 'life, loyalty and having a go' (Mr Fordham pictured with his grandson Freddy)

Ben Fordham said the lasting legacy his father will have had on him was teaching him the true value of ‘life, loyalty and having a go’ (Mr Fordham pictured with his grandson Freddy)

Alan Jones also spoke highly of Mr Fordham, heaping praise on a man he described as ‘loyal’ and ‘generous’.

‘It was his loyalty and generosity that stood out to me. He was the most amazing storyteller, had a wonderful sense of humour and was a lot of fun,’ he said.  

Mr Fordham was due to be appointed to the Order of Australia (AM) next year, but when news of his terminal diagnosis was revealed, some power players stood up. 

The Governor-General agreed to move the appointment up earlier but sadly Mr Fordham lost his battle before the day. 

But Ben informed his father of the news and got a squeeze of the hand as a sign of acceptance from his father before he died.   

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and police commissioner Mick Fuller will attend a private ceremony on Monday to award the honour posthumously. 

On Thursday Ben Fordham revealed doctors had told his father his battle with the disease ‘was not going to be continuing’.

As well as representing entertainment personalities Mr Fordham also built a reputation as a gifted sports agent and represented rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns (pictured left and right, with Matty Johns centre as his alter ego Reg Reagan)

As well as representing entertainment personalities Mr Fordham also built a reputation as a gifted sports agent and represented rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns (pictured left and right, with Matty Johns centre as his alter ego Reg Reagan)

As well as representing entertainment personalities Mr Fordham also built a reputation as a gifted sports agent and represented rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns (pictured left and right, with Matty Johns centre as his alter ego Reg Reagan)

‘I’ve spent the day with him today and I’ve actually made the decision late yesterday I’ll be wrapping up the radio show either at the end of today or tomorrow and that will be it for the year,’ Fordham said.

‘It (the cancer) has been around for a few years. He’s had a couple of bouts with it. He beat it and then it came back and then recently it came back again.’

The presenter interviewed his father on Sky News – discussing his career in the media as well as his cancer.

Ben explained to viewers that John first suspected he had cancer during a family holiday in 2017.

‘I remember my sister Sarah saying, ‘Oh what’s on your neck?’ and you told her, ‘Oh it’s a strained muscle or something’,’ Ben said.  

The lump on John’s neck though turned out to be something more serious.

‘That was a shock, no one wants to get that news,’ John said of the initial diagnosis.

Mr Fordham also leaves behind a legacy of charity after establishing the Head and Neck Cancer Foundation

He launched the foundation after being diagnosed with aggressive cancer.

‘(John) was inspired to learn more about Head and Neck cancer and what could be done to ensure others did not suffer from the dreadful complications associated with this disease,’ the foundation states. 

After being diagnosed Mr Fordham (pictured with son Ben) established the Head and Neck Cancer Foundation to ensure others didn't suffer the dreadful complications of the cancer

After being diagnosed Mr Fordham (pictured with son Ben) established the Head and Neck Cancer Foundation to ensure others didn't suffer the dreadful complications of the cancer

After being diagnosed Mr Fordham (pictured with son Ben) established the Head and Neck Cancer Foundation to ensure others didn’t suffer the dreadful complications of the cancer

 

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The Crown comes under fire for plotlines making Princess Anne a racy man-eater

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Netflix drama The Crown has been accused of ‘muckraking’ for portraying Princess Anne as a man-eater – and heavily hinting at the Queen having an affair.

The upcoming third series includes an episode where Princess Anne wears frilly black lingerie in bed as her then boyfriend Andrew Parker Bowles walks around bare-chested and declares: ‘That was fun.’

Anne, played by Erin Doherty, 27, agrees and the pair get back into bed. The scene supposedly takes place in the early 1970s before Army officer Parker Bowles married Camilla – who dated Prince Charles around the same time.

TV portrayal: Erin Doherty as Anne in The Crown. The series returns to Netflix next Sunday with a new cast

TV portrayal: Erin Doherty as Anne in The Crown. The series returns to Netflix next Sunday with a new cast

TV portrayal: Erin Doherty as Anne in The Crown. The series returns to Netflix next Sunday with a new cast

Other scenes indicate a secret romance between the Queen and her horse racing manager Lord Porchester – angering Prince Philip.

The Queen’s former press secretary Dickie Arbiter branded the imagined scenes ‘very distasteful’ and voiced concerns viewers would take them as ‘sacrosanct’.

The series returns to Netflix next Sunday with a new cast as it moves the story on to the turbulent world of the 1960s and 70s. The show’s creator Peter Morgan, 56, has included several racier moments likely to get viewers’ pulses racing.

The Queen – played by Oscar winner Olivia Colman – is hinted at having a romance with Lord Porchester who she affectionately calls ‘Porchie’. 

Prince Philip and Princess Anne on board the Royal Yacht Britannia in New Zealand in the 1960s

Prince Philip and Princess Anne on board the Royal Yacht Britannia in New Zealand in the 1960s

Prince Philip and Princess Anne on board the Royal Yacht Britannia in New Zealand in the 1960s

In one episode, Prince Philip becomes suspicious over her month-long visit to stud farms in France and the US with Porchie and questions her when she returns.

A frosty encounter set in Buckingham Palace sees her snapping back in irritation: ‘If you have something to say, say it now. Otherwise, if you don’t mind, I’m busy.’

Mr Arbiter, 79, told the Sunday Times: ‘This is very distasteful and totally unfounded. The Queen is the last person in the world to have ever considered looking at another man.’

He added: ‘Not only is this muckraking, this is gossip that’s been washing around for decades. It’s got absolutely no substance.’ There has never been any evidence that the Queen and Lord Porchester – who she remained close to until his death in 2001 – were anything more than friends.

Andrew Parker Bowles with Princess Anne in 1971

Andrew Parker Bowles with Princess Anne in 1971

Andrew Parker Bowles with Princess Anne in 1971

Mr Arbiter said the show’s writer Morgan had a habit of ‘beefing up’ scripts. He added: ‘The Crown is fiction. No one knows [about] any conversation between members of the Royal Family, but people will tell the story they want to and sensationalise it’.

The show’s fondness for marital conflicts and bedroom antics within the Royal Family has come in for criticism before. Historian and royal biographer Hugo Vickers complained the first series was let down by ‘some quite remarkable lapses into vulgarity’.

Morgan, who was educated at top private schools, has defended its creative licence, arguing several episodes included constitutional issues.

This had ‘earned’ him the right to include ‘a bit of sex, a bit of playfulness’, he told the New York Times. He has also insisted that he was ‘absolutely fastidious about there being an underlying truth’.

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Dodgy gambling websites that target Australians to be blocked as they cost the country $100 million 

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Australia’s communications watchdog will block illegal gambling websites hosted offshore under new powers now in effect. 

Punters have been warned by The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to withdraw their funds now from any illegal overseas gambling sites before they go offline.

Internet gambling dens such as Emu Casino and FairGo Casino which are run from Curacao in the Caribbean and target vulnerable Australians will be among the first to be blocked, the Sydney Morning Herald reported. 

Internet gambling sites such as Emu Casino and FairGo Casino, run from Curacao in the Caribbean, target Australians and will be among the first to be blocked

Internet gambling sites such as Emu Casino and FairGo Casino, run from Curacao in the Caribbean, target Australians and will be among the first to be blocked

Internet gambling sites such as Emu Casino and FairGo Casino, run from Curacao in the Caribbean, target Australians and will be among the first to be blocked

Australians spend up to $400million on the dodgy sites each year.

ACMA said on Monday it will ask internet service providers to block websites in breach of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 using new internet censorship powers now in effect.

ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin said the ability to have service providers block websites was a valuable weapon in the fight against illegal online gambling. 

‘In many cases these sites refuse to pay significant winnings, or only a small portion,’ she said in an emailed statement on Monday.

‘Customers had also experienced illegal operators continuing to withdraw funds from their bank account without authorisation. There is little to no recourse for consumers engaging with these unscrupulous operators.’

‘If you have funds deposited with an illegal gambling site, you should withdraw those funds now.’

Ms O’Loughlin said public education was crucial in deterring vulnerable people from using illegal offshore gambling websites as they explicitly target Australians.

 ‘Many illegal offshore gambling websites target Australians by using Australian themes and images, such as the Australian flag and native animals,’ she said.

ACMA publishes a list of licensed gambling services where people can check if online gambling websites are legal in Australia on their website here

Federal Communications Minister Paul Fletcher said many people were losing money on more than 1000 illegal offshore gambling sites, and this accounted for about $100 million in lost tax revenue each year. 

‘Too often these offshore operators are defrauding Australians and their websites typically provide very few, if any, harm minimisation controls,’ Mr Fletcher said.

‘Consumers have no recourse to retrieve their money.’ 

Punters have been warned to withdraw their money now while they still can

Punters have been warned to withdraw their money now while they still can

Punters have been warned to withdraw their money now while they still can

Mr Fletcher said the ACMA had a range of other powers including issuing formal warnings and civil penalty orders, but these were difficult to enforce against overseas operators. 

Legislation strengthening ACMA’s powers was passed in 2017 and Mr Fletcher said an arrangement had been reached with internet service providers. 

The ACMA’s new powers fulfil one of three legislative recommendations that came out of a 2015 review of interactive gambling.

The review, overseen by former NSW premier Barry O’Farrell, made 19 recommendations to the government.

It raised a number of problems with the sites, including that they lacked Australian consumer protections and had links with organised crime.

More than 65 illegal companies have pulled out of Australia since 2017 when the ACMA started enforcing new illegal offshore gambling rules. 

 

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