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The worst country for pickpockets revealed

<p dir="ltr">When it comes to travelling abroad, there are always different rules to abide by in order to have a stress-free holiday experience. </p> <p dir="ltr">Common sense is a huge key player in staying safe while travelling, with holiday goers often taking extra precautions to keep themselves and their belongings safe in foreign countries. </p> <p dir="ltr">However, there will always be sneaky people who prey on tourists, with these pickpockets having the power to turn a holiday potentially disastrous. </p> <p dir="ltr">While lots of savvy travellers will share their stories about a particular city and a close call they encountered on their journeys, a new survey has proven which European cities are the worst for pickpocketing. </p> <p dir="ltr">Travel insurance experts at <a href="https://www.quotezone.co.uk/presszone/european-pickpocketing-index-top-tourist-destinations-to-watch-out-for">Quotezone</a> have compiled a list of the top 10 cities tourists (as well as locals) are likely to be pickpocketed while travelling around Europe, based on customer feedback and complaints. </p> <p dir="ltr">Italy has come in at the top spot, with the major cities reporting the biggest number of theft complaints in comparison to any other European countries. </p> <p dir="ltr">Tourists named hotspots such as the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain and the Pantheon in Rome, as well as the Duomo di Milano in Milan and the Gallerie Degli Uffizi in Florence as places they were targeted by pickpockets. </p> <p dir="ltr">Coming in at second place was France, with major tourist hotspots in Paris all being named as places to be wary of pickpockets. </p> <p dir="ltr">Greg Wilson, Founder and CEO of Quotezone.co.uk, said that unfortunately this new research shows that thousands of people have complained about pickpockets in Europe while experiencing the best that European holiday destinations have to offer.</p> <p dir="ltr">He said, “Theft can happen anywhere and tourist hotspots are convenient places for criminals to target holidaymakers’ wallets and purses whilst they are busy taking in the sites.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“It is essential always to remain vigilant, leave valuables, like expensive jewellery, in a safe in the hotel and always travel with a secure cross-body bag with zips to secure phones and wallets or even a money belt.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Check out the entire top ten list of destinations with the highest pickpocketing rates below. </p> <p dir="ltr">10. Poland</p> <p dir="ltr">9. Ireland </p> <p dir="ltr">8. Turkey </p> <p dir="ltr">7. Portugal </p> <p dir="ltr">6. Spain </p> <p dir="ltr">5. Greece</p> <p dir="ltr">4. Germany</p> <p dir="ltr">3. The Netherlands </p> <p dir="ltr">2. France </p> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation">1. Italy</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p> <p> </p>

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Detection dogs to lead search for Samantha Murphy's body

<p>Detectives have launched a <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/new-update-in-search-for-samantha-murphy-s-body" target="_blank" rel="noopener">fresh search</a> for Samantha Murphy's body, but after spending eight hours on Wednesday trying to locate her remains in Buninyong to no avail, they are trying a different approach. </p> <p>Technology detection dogs will assist detectives in their search on Thursday, at a new site that police have not specified, with the intention of trying to track her phone or watch. </p> <p>“We’ll be going to a different location but we will also use assistance from the Australian Federal Police today in technical detection dogs,” Chief Commissioner Shane Patton told <em>ABC Radio</em>. </p> <p>“We don’t have the capacity — we are trying to get that capability — to run a dog that can detect a SIM from a mobile phone and that type of thing.</p> <p>“We still haven’t recovered her phone and her watch. We’ll use all those specialist skills.”</p> <p>He also added that the "intelligence" they received, which sparked this fresh search did not come from interviews with accused murderer, Patrick Orren Stephenson. </p> <p>“We are doing everything we can to try and find Samantha Murphy’s body. We weren’t successful yesterday but we will continue to do everything we can,” Chief Commissioner Patton said. </p> <p>In another statement, Victoria police also said that the search on Thursday is not a "full-scale targeted search". </p> <p>"This is not a full-scale targeted search as took place yesterday in Buninyong with a range of specialist resources," they said. </p> <p>"Detectives from the Missing Persons squad have been based in Ballarat for over a month and regularly undertake a range of enquiries and small scale searches as part of the current investigation." </p> <p>The accused murderer, who is the <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/everything-we-know-about-samantha-murphy-s-accused-killer" target="_blank" rel="noopener">son of former AFL player</a> Orren Stephenson, was arrested and charged on March 6, and was refused bail at Ballarat Magistrate’s Court.</p> <p>He will next face court on August 8.</p> <p><em>Images: Nine News</em></p> <p> </p>

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New update in search for Samantha Murphy's body

<p>A fresh search for Samantha Murphy's body has begun, with police targeting their search in areas “highlighted by intelligence” from several sources. </p> <p>The 51-year-old Ballarat mum, was allegedly murdered by 22-year-old Patrick Orren Stephenson, after she went missing while on a morning run near her home on February 4. </p> <p>Officers will begin their renewed search for the mum's remains on select parts of the Buninyong Bushland Reserve on Wednesday. </p> <p>The search will be conducted by specialist units including  the Missing Persons Squad, Search and Rescue Squad, Mounted Branch, Dog Squad, Public Order Response Team and motorcyclists from Road Policing Command as well as local police. </p> <p>“Since Samantha’s disappearance, extensive searches have been conducted in the Ballarat area and today we will focus on an area of bushland in Buninyong,” Detective Superintendent Mark Hatt said.</p> <p>Victoria Police said that the search would “focus on trying to locate Samantha’s body” and members of the public have been urged to not join the search efforts. </p> <p>“We will have a range of specialist resources involved, however as we are searching for Samantha’s body, we ask that members of the public do not try and join today’s search," the detective added. </p> <p>“Hopefully today’s search will benefit the investigation or provide further avenues of enquiry for police. We will also look at further searches in the Ballarat area as the investigation progresses.”</p> <p>He added that police are doing everything they can to find her body. </p> <p>“While someone has been charged in relation to Samantha’s disappearance, we remain committed to doing everything we can to locate her and return her to her family,” Detective Superintendent Hatt said. </p> <p>Patrick Orren Stephenson was <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/new-details-emerge-in-samantha-murphy-murder-charge" target="_blank" rel="noopener">charged</a> with Murphy's murder on March 6 and was refused bail at the Ballarat Magistrate’s Court. </p> <p>Police allege that the son of former AFL player Orren Stephenson killed Murphy in a “deliberate attack”. </p> <p>His identity was initially suppressed by the court out of fears for his safety, but the order was challenged by the media, and his <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/everything-we-know-about-samantha-murphy-s-accused-killer" target="_blank" rel="noopener">identity</a> was revealed days later. </p> <p>He is due to face court on August 8. </p> <p><em>Image: news.com.au</em></p>

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Police seize suspect's car in Samantha Murphy investigation

<p>Detectives looking into Samantha Murphy's alleged murder have seized a car as part of their investigation. </p> <p>Police have reportedly been watching accused killer Patrick Stephenson for two weeks prior to his <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/new-details-emerge-in-samantha-murphy-murder-charge" target="_blank" rel="noopener">arrest</a> on Wednesday, according to <em>7NEWS</em>.</p> <p>They also reportedly seized Stephenson's 4WD as part of a probe into whether or not the Ballarat mum was hit by his car. </p> <p>Speaking to <em>The Herald Sun</em>, one neighbour recalled the moment police swarmed a Scotsburn home that Stephenson and his partner were reportedly house-sitting at on Wednesday morning. </p> <p>“There were all sorts of cars, they all looked like unmarked police,” the neighbour said.</p> <p>“It was about 6.30am when I went past… I put two and two together and I said to my wife: ‘I reckon something’s going on, I reckon they were police’.</p> <p>“And sure enough, later that day (the news of an arrest) was released.”</p> <p>Despite his arrest and murder charge, the 22-year-old, who is <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/everything-we-know-about-samantha-murphy-s-accused-killer" target="_blank" rel="noopener">the son of retired AFL player Orren Stephenson</a>, is not cooperating with police as they continue to search for Murphy's body. </p> <p>Murphy's family have shared a desperate plea as they continue to search for answers. </p> <p>“We are hoping he has a bit of a change of heart and that he will co-operate. That will help bring her home,” Murphy's husband, Mick, said on Friday.</p> <p>“We’d just like some more answers now.”</p> <p>Stephenson is due to face a committal mention on August 8.</p> <p><em>Images: 7News/ Facebook</em></p>

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AFL to tribute for Jesse Baird and Luke Davies

<p>The AFL will honour Jesse Baird and Luke Davies with a tribute to the couple before Thursday night's opening game of the season at the Sydney Cricket Ground. </p> <p>AFL CEO Andrew Dillon announced that players from Sydney Swans and Melbourne Demons, as well as the umpires will gather at 7.27pm and wear black armbands in a mark of respect for the allegedly murdered couple. </p> <p>"A tribute pre-game to both Jesse and Luke tomorrow night is a small way for us all to reflect and remember two young men during what is a very difficult time for their families and friends," Dillon said.</p> <p>"The AFL acknowledge and respect both families who are experiencing untold grief and so are particularly grateful for their support of the tribute."</p> <p>The tribute will honour the memory of Davies, who was a lifelong Swans supporter and Baird, who was an AFL goal umpire and "a popular and respected member of our AFL umpiring family". </p> <p>"Jesse developed many close friendships his umpiring career and time at the AFL," the statement read.</p> <p>"He was such a vibrant, fun-loving person, who was deeply committed to umpiring."</p> <p>Baird made his debut on the AFL umpiring list in March 2020 and was named the AFL's most promising goal umpire when he won the umpiring association's Brian Pratt Medallion two years in a row.</p> <p>When he moved to Sydney in 2023, he continued his AFL umpiring career, which spanned 62 matches including two finals. </p> <p>The couple were <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/police-officer-arrested-amid-search-for-missing-men" target="_blank" rel="noopener">allegedly murdered</a> by serving police officer Beau Lamarre-Condon in Baird’s Paddington home on February 19.</p> <p>Their <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/update-on-search-for-bodies-of-murdered-couple" target="_blank" rel="noopener">bodies </a>were discovered in a rural NSW property on February 27, over a week after they were allegedly killed. </p> <p>The senior constable has since been charged two counts of murder and remains behind bars after being denied bail. </p> <p>Following their tragic deaths, tributes have flowed in from the couple's friends, family and <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/sarah-harris-leads-tributes-to-jesse-baird" target="_blank" rel="noopener">colleagues </a>across the country.</p> <p><em>Images: AFLUA/ Facebook</em></p>

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New CCTV footage released of accused double murderer

<p>Chilling CCTV footage of Beau Lamarre-Condon has emerged in the moments before and after he allegedly killed Jesse Baird and Luke Davies.</p> <p>The video, obtained by <em>9News,</em> allegedly shows the senior constable entering and leaving a sports shop and buying surfboard bags on two separate occasions. </p> <p>Baird and Davies' <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/update-on-search-for-bodies-of-murdered-couple" target="_blank" rel="noopener">bodies were found</a> near Bungonia on Tuesday, where police allege that surfboard bags were used to transport the bodies.</p> <p>In the CCTV footage, the senior constable walked into a Miranda sports store with a friend, two days before the alleged double murder, and then walked out with a surfboard bag. </p> <p>In a second clip, about three hours after the alleged murder, Lamarre-Condon was filmed walking into the same store by himself and walking out with another surf bag. </p> <p>Another video showed a man in a black cap arriving in a black SUV on the morning the couple were allegedly killed, and got out of his vehicle parked just 25m from Baird’s home. </p> <p>The man then drives off at 9am - around 50 minutes before the pair were allegedly killed. </p> <p>Lamarre-Condon allegedly returned to he house the next day in a rented van reportedly used to move the bodies. </p> <p>The CCTV footage emerge just one day after police alleged that the senior constable used his <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/shocking-new-claims-on-alleged-double-murder" target="_blank" rel="noopener">police-issued gun at the couple</a>, and then replaced the bullets with ones stolen from a firing range. </p> <p>Lamarre-Condon handed himself into police last Friday and was later charged with two counts of murder.</p> <p>He is currently at Silverwater prison and is next due to face court on April 23.</p> <p><em>Images: 9NEWS</em></p>

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How Samantha Murphy's digital data could be a crucial clue

<p>Last Friday, Victoria Police revisited the Mount Clear area after extracting information from her mobile phone data, as they continue to investigate the Ballarat mum's disappearance. </p> <p>Now, Former Australia Federal Police officer and professor of cybersecurity, Nigel Phair believes an "anomaly" or "change in the behaviour" of Murphy's data pattern may have prompted authorities to return to the area. </p> <p>Detectives have previously said that Murphy departed her residence and ran approximately 7km through Woowookarung Regional Park with data tracking her last location as Mount Clear. </p> <p>Phair who formerly headed investigations at the Australian High Tech Crime Centre (AHTCC), said that data from her iPhone and Apple Watch is particularly important as both devices constantly log her GPS coordinates, heart rate, altitude and can even detect falls among other biometric information. </p> <p>"From the second that she walked out of her door, when out on the street, they would be able to see where she was moving and how she was moving," Phair told told Liz Hayes on Channel 9's series <em>Under Investigation</em>. </p> <p>Additionally, her iPhone can be precisely located using triangulation from nearby cell phone towers. </p> <p>Phair said that this type of data is extremely reliable and accurate, and he believes that the disturbance in this data the 7km mark, where it stopped tracking the information, reveals some form of sophistication. </p> <p>"That means someone's done something active against those two devices and you have to know what you are doing to think I'm going to completely take these out," he said. </p> <p>"It's not just turning them off, it's destroying them and then getting rid of that piece of evidence."</p> <p>He added that tampering with these devices are particularly hard, because even if they may attempt to change SIM cards, mobile phones that are still on can still be traced. </p> <p>"A device has two signifiers. It has a phone number, which you can change, call that the software signifier," he said.</p> <p>"Then it has a hardware identifier, which is the IMEI number." </p> <p>He said that police would be notified if the IMEI number was still operational. </p> <p>"Regardless if you swap SIMs or don't use a SIM at all and just use it as a Wi-Fi-only device in a Wi-Fi area, it will always broadcast that IME number onto the network," he said. </p> <p>Phair said that it is "highly likely" that police have the data on potential predators and are tracking them, as they can see whether someone else was using a device in the Mount Clear area the day Murphy disappeared. </p> <p>Former Victorian detective Damian Marrett told Hayes the he believes Murphy's disappearance is the result of foul play, as changes in her digital data could suggest it was a "targeted attack". </p> <p>He also added that if anyone else had access to her Find My iPhone app or any of her other data, they could easily track her using this information. </p> <p>"Somebody who intimately knew the tracks that she takes or had access to be able to track her runs," he said.</p> <p>"So she could have been tracked without those people having to physically surveil her."</p> <p><em>Images: Under Investigation/ Facebook</em></p> <p> </p>

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Shocking new claims on alleged double murder

<p>Shocking new claims about senior constable Beau Lamarre-Condon, who <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/police-officer-arrested-amid-search-for-missing-men" target="_blank" rel="noopener">was accused of murdering</a> Sydney couple Jesse Baird and Luke Davies, have been made by police.</p> <p>The accusations were revealed by Ben Fordham on <em>2GB radio</em> on Thursday.</p> <p>Fordham revealed that police allege Constable Lamarre-Condon fired three shots at the Sydney couple from his police-issued gun.  </p> <p>The number of shots was reportedly confirmed by one of Baird’s neighbours, whose CCTV security cameras recording the sound of three shots being fired just after 9.30am on Monday, February 19 in Paddington. </p> <p>The neighbour reportedly reviewed their security cameras a few days after the alleged murders, when news of the couple's disappearance hit the media. </p> <p>Fordham added that police will further allege Constable Lamarre-Condon used bullets stolen from a firing range a fortnight before the killing to refill his gun, to not raise suspicious from his superiors when the gun was returned. </p> <p>Police have alleged that the  gun was taken from Miranda police station on Friday night and was stored Balmain police station the night after the alleged murders. </p> <p>The gun was then allegedly returned Miranda police station on Tuesday, fully loaded as if no shots were fired. </p> <p>Police Commissioner Karen Webb told <em>ABC’s 7.30 </em>on Wednesday night that officers could store a weapon overnight at a police station or inside an approved safe at home, but would need to gain permission to do so from their superiors. </p> <p>She did not comment on the claims surrounding  Constable Lamarre-Condon’s gun storage, as it would form a part of the investigation. </p> <p><em>Images: news.com.au</em></p>

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Experts shed new light on Samantha Murphy case

<p>A panel of experts have shed new light on the case of missing mum Samantha Murphy. </p> <p>The mother-of-three went missing on February 4 after going for her usual morning run in a local park in Ballarat. </p> <p>Despite major search efforts from the missing persons squad, specialists and the local Ballarat community, she has still not been found, and now a panel of experts have gathered to discuss the possibilities of what could've happened to Murphy. </p> <p>Former Victorian detective Damian Marrett, criminal psychologist Dr Peter Ashkar, missing persons specialist Valentine Smith and cyber expert Nigel Phair discussed a number of different scenarios in Channel Nine's show <em>Under Investigation </em>on Wednesday night. </p> <p>“The idea that Samantha has actually wilfully left the family is just unfathomable and just implausible to me,” Dr Ashkar said. </p> <p>Presenter Liz Hayes, who spoke to mine shaft explorer Raymond Shaw said that there's a possibility Murphy's body has been buried in one of the abandoned mine shafts around Ballarat. </p> <p>“I think there could be anywhere between 4000 and 5000 gold mines just underneath the town," Shaw told Hayes. </p> <p>The panel agreed that the most likely scenario was that Murphy’s body had been dumped in a mineshaft after meeting with foul play, as they believe that there was "no way" Murphy fell down a mineshaft by accident, as the locals all know how to navigate the terrain. </p> <p>“They could be a great place to conceal a body or a crime after the fact … and you’d probably never find it,” Marrett said. </p> <p>Dr Ashkar added that the absence of any trace of Murphy could point to her having been attacked by a “psychopathic predator … who would know that area, like the back of their hand”.</p> <p>The panel also considered a potential new clue, the possible sighting of a damaged vehicle, which was alluded to in a <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/major-development-in-search-for-samantha-murphy" target="_blank" rel="noopener">police statement </a>requesting for new information about the case. </p> <p>The experts said that if there was a damaged car in the area, it could mean that Murphy was kidnapped at the 7km point of her run and could still be alive. </p> <p>“I would still like to believe the very real possibility that it’s a kidnapping and she’s still alive,” Dr Ashkar said. </p> <p>“That’s my hope. But I absolutely feel that whoever has taken her and abducted, they are very systematic and organised and knew very well what they were doing.”</p> <p>Marrett added that the police’s interest in the damaged car was significant.</p> <p>“They didn’t just say a car, they said a damaged car, it’s so specific,” he said.</p> <p>“So was that damage caused with this incident or was that damage because someone saw a damaged car leave?”</p> <p><em>Image: Nine / Facebook</em></p>

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Major development in search for Samantha Murphy

<p>Police are moving to a different search area around 5km away from where Samantha Murphy was last seen, after receiving new information from her mobile data. They now believe that “one or more parties” were involved in her disappearance. </p> <p>The Ballarat mum was last seen leaving her home at 7am on February 4 for her usual morning run. </p> <p>On Friday, detectives from the Missing Persons Squad will lead a targeted search of the Mount Clear area, which is adjacent to the Canadian State Forest where Murphy was known to frequent, as part of their investigation.</p> <p>The search will focus on an area “highlighted by intelligence derived from phone data”.</p> <p>Despite missing for almost three weeks now, police still insist that they did not believe Murphy;'s disappearance was “sinister”, but have now confirmed that she went missing under suspicious circumstances.</p> <p>“Police are treating her disappearance as suspicious due to the length of time she has been missing and given no trace of her has been found,” police said.</p> <p>Detective Acting Superintendent Mark Hatt said that while police are keeping an open mind about what happened to Murphy they have ruled out any type of medical incident as there was nothing to indicate that she left on her own accord. </p> <p>"We are keeping an open mind, but believe the most likely scenario is that her disappearance involves one or more parties," Detective Acting Superintendent Hatt said.</p> <p>“Since Samantha’s disappearance almost three weeks ago, a significant search and investigation has been undertaken in an effort to find her,” he added.</p> <p>“I know that a lot of people, particularly those who live in the local Ballarat community, are extremely concerned about the fact we haven’t yet located Samantha or who may be responsible for her disappearance.</p> <p>“I want to reassure those members of the public that Victoria Police is doing everything we can to find out what has happened and provide some answers to Samantha’s family and the broader community.”</p> <p>Investigators are currently reviewing about 12,000 hours of CCTV footage and following up on over 500 pieces of information. </p> <p>On Thursday, police announced that they have called in additional detectives from <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/family-pets/new-development-in-search-for-samantha-murphy" target="_blank" rel="noopener">specialist units</a> to help with the search.</p> <p>They are also asking residents in the Ballarat East and Mount Helen areas particularly around the Canadian Forest to check their CCTV footage for any relevant information. </p> <p>“I encourage anyone who does have information that could be relevant to this investigation — whether that’s a person or vehicle seen in the area on that day, something unusual such as a damaged vehicle or property — to please come forward and speak to police or provide the information via Crime Stoppers,” Hatt said.</p> <p>“Police remain open to any and all possibilities, so if you know something or have seen something, then we want to hear from you.”</p> <p><em>Images: 7NEWs</em></p>

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New development in search for Samantha Murphy

<p>Police have called in more than a dozen detectives from specialist units to assist the investigation into the disappearance of Samantha Murphy 18 days after she went missing. </p> <p>The mother-of-three was last seen leaving her Ballarat East home to go on her usual morning run in nearby bushland at around 7am on February 4. </p> <p>Now, The Missing Persons Squad, who is leading the investigation has been expanded to include detectives from the Counter Terrorism Command and Crime Command units.</p> <p>The detectives from these specialist units are “highly skilled” selected for their “experience in complex and protracted investigations”.</p> <p>Police have also clarified that the extra detectives have travelled to Ballarat because of their skills and experience rather than a terror or sex crime link. </p> <p>“We have not taken counter terrorism detectives because we think her disappearance is terrorism related,” police told the <em>Herald Sun</em>. </p> <p>Local community members are also doing whatever they can to help, and are conducting their own searches. </p> <p>The group of volunteers are all working together to find "any answers, any solution, any hints, any evidence that might be able to contribute towards bringing Sam home," local Cristie-Lea King told <em>A Current Affair</em> on Wednesday night. </p> <p>On Wednesday, community-members also banded together to fly in an <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/experienced-bush-tracker-to-join-in-search-for-samantha-murphy" target="_blank" rel="noopener">experienced bush tracker </a>to help them and share his expertise ahead of the community-led search on Saturday.</p> <p>“I’m hoping to get a lot done while I’m here,” he told 7News at the time. </p> <p>“I plan on training up some locals in the fundamentals of tracking, so when I leave I can continue to liaise with those on the ground." </p> <p>“People are entitled to their opinions as to whether or not Samantha is out in the bush.</p> <p>“On the chance that she is, I want to ensure that absolutely everything is done to find her.”</p> <p><em>Images: Victoria Police</em></p>

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"Move over": Vyleen White's daughter slams Queensland premier

<p>The grieving daughter of Vyleen White, who was <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/grandmother-fatally-stabbed-in-front-of-granddaughter" target="_blank" rel="noopener">fatally stabbed</a> in a shopping centre car park, has slammed the Queensland premier over his comments claiming her mother's death could not have been prevented.</p> <p>A 16-year-old boy from Bellbird Park has been <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/update-on-tragic-stabbing-of-queensland-grandmother" target="_blank" rel="noopener">charged with murder</a>, with four other teenagers charged with the unlawful use of a motor vehicle.</p> <p>Following the tragic incident, White's daughter, Cindy Micallef joined the Queensland African Communities Council (QACC) to call for "peace" and more action against youth violence, following <a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-13059179/Vyleen-White-Ipswich-stabbing-Family-white-grandmother-allegedly-murdered-South-Sudanese-boy-joins-African-community-plead-calm-racial-tensions-flare.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">reports</a> of abuse and harassment towards the African-Australian community. </p> <p>Micallef said that while her family had been "torn apart from the heart", she did not want the community to react in anger. </p> <p>"Mum's legacy will live on in peace. She was never one to be prejudiced, she always looked for the best in people," she said at a media conference in Redbank Plains. </p> <p>Micallef has also called on Queensland Premier Steven Miles to take stronger action on crime prevention. </p> <p>"He promised to protect the community and make changes," she told the press conference. "There's no substance to what he says.</p> <p>"If this government isn't going to make a change move over, because we're going to get someone in to make the changes we need."</p> <p>This comes after the Queensland premier told reporters "nobody can seriously stand up and say they could have prevented this murder". </p> <p>Miles had reportedly been unaware that the accused teen had been out on bail at the time of the alleged murder. </p> <p>Micallef expressed her concern that the premier is not standing with them, so her and her family have joined the African community in calling for action. </p> <p>"You know what, I was really glad he said it because I'm like, 'You're not the man for the job if you can't reassure people in the community this is the utmost priority'," Micallef said.</p> <p>"We all need to feel safe."</p> <p>She also called for support for the African community. </p> <p>"You don't judge the whole community by a couple of bad apples," she said.</p> <p>This news comes just days after Vyleen White's <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/tragic-new-details-emerge-as-vyleen-white-s-husband-speaks-out" target="_blank" rel="noopener">husband</a> spoke out on her death. </p> <p><em>Images: 9News</em></p>

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Update on tragic stabbing of Queensland grandmother

<p>Five teenage boys have now been charged over the <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/grandmother-fatally-stabbed-in-front-of-granddaughter" target="_blank" rel="noopener">fatal stabbing</a> of Queensland grandmother Vyleen White. </p> <p>The 70-year-old was allegedly stabbed in the chest as she was returning to her car after grocery shopping with her young granddaughter at Redbank Plains Shopping Centre on Saturday evening. </p> <p>A 16-year-old boy has since been arrested at a unit complex in Bellbird Park shortly after 2.30pm on Monday. He has been charged with one count of murder, unlawful use of a motor vehicle and three counts of stealing.</p> <p>He is due to appear at Ipswich Children's Court on Tuesday.</p> <p>Two other 16-year-old boys from Goodna and Bellbird Park were also arrested not long after, and charged with the unlawful use of a motor vehicle. </p> <p>A 15-year-old boy was arrested at Redbank Plains and was also charged with the unlawful use of a motor vehicle, along with possessing tainted property.</p> <p>This comes just one day after another 15-year-old boy <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/teen-arrested-over-alleged-stabbing-of-grandmother" target="_blank" rel="noopener">handed himself in</a> to Ipswich Police Station, and was charged with the unlawful use of a motor vehicle. </p> <p>These arrests come after a major manhunt and public appeal for help in locating the alleged offenders, with Queensland police saying that the extensive investigation remains ongoing.</p> <p><em>Image: Nine News/ Facebook</em></p>

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Twist for cop accused of killing Clare Nowland

<p>Senior Constable Kristian James Samuel White, 33, who was accused of killing 95-year-old Clare Nowland <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/family-horrified-by-police-statement-on-tasering-of-clare-nowland" target="_blank" rel="noopener">with a taser</a> at an aged care home in Cooma, regional NSW has been deemed a “flight risk”. </p> <p>White was charged with recklessly causing grievous bodily harm, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and common assault over the alleged “excessive use of force”.</p> <p>It is alleged that Nowland was using a walker and holding a serrated steak knife at the time of the incident, when the 33-year-old said “stop, just … nah bugger it” before allegedly tasering her. </p> <p>The great-grandmother fell backwards and fractured her skull, causing an inoperable brain injury that unfortunately led to her death just days later. </p> <p>Just last week, White's charges were upgraded to include an additional charge of manslaughter on advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions.</p> <p>White appeared in court on Wednesday, for the first time since his charges were upgraded, and received two new bail conditions. </p> <p>The Constable was required to surrender his passport and not leave the country due to the upgraded charges. </p> <p>However, prior to his bail conditions being approved, Magistrate Roger Clisdell criticised both Crown prosecutor Victoria Garrity, and White's defence lawyer Warwick Anderson for negotiating the new terms of bail without his input. </p> <p>“I make the decision,” he said.</p> <p>“I would have thought my last explosion would have caused you to be more sensitive to my position.”</p> <p>This comes after the prosecutors failed to tell the Magistrate that they had agreed to allow White to appear in court via video link in May, without the court's consent.</p> <p>The Crown prosecutor defended her actions by saying that she asked him to surrender his passport to mitigate the risk of flight. </p> <p>“With the more serious charge now being faced, there is a heightened risk that he would leave the jurisdiction and not face court,”  she explained. </p> <p>“Those two new conditions are now appropriate.”</p> <p>While the police officer's defence lawyer added that “He has no intention of fleeing the jurisdiction," and agreed to the additional bail conditions “to facilitate the speedy resolution”. </p> <p>White will return to court in February next year. </p> <p>Nowland's family members released a statement via their lawyer after the proceedings on Wednesday. </p> <p>“The family does not wish to comment further on the criminal process at this time given the extremely serious nature of the charge against Mr White, who continues to be a sworn NSW police officer,” the statement read. </p> <p>NSW Police confirmed that White remained suspended from duty with pay.</p> <p><em>Images: ABC News South East NSW: Floss Adams/ News.com.au</em></p>

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Woman launches true crime podcast to find her father's killer

<p>21 years ago, Madison McGhee's father was shot in cold blood. </p> <p>Madison was just six years old when her dad, John "JC" Cornelius McGhee, died, and was originally told he had passed away from a heart attack.</p> <p>However, when Madison was in high school, she began to ask questions about what really happened that night. </p> <p>"When I was 16 I had a weird feeling that something else was going on, so I asked my mum about a weird connection between my cousin and the death of my father," Madison told <a href="https://9now.nine.com.au/today/ice-cold-case-podcaster-hoping-to-solve-fathers-21-year-murder-mystery/a873da03-0198-4e34-b65c-cc3ced6e8cca" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Today Extra</em></a>.</p> <p>"And that's when my mum told me that there was another side of the story and that my dad had actually been murdered and it was a cold case, completely unsolved."</p> <p>Madison's father, who was a recovering drug addict and police informant, was shot in the head in the early hours of July 11th 2002 at his home in Ohio. </p> <p>His 16-year-old daughter and Madison's half-sister, Alyssa, was home at the time and found her father's body on the ground with a bullet hole in a nearby wall.</p> <p>Police investigated his death, but failed to find any evidence that could convict someone of his murder. </p> <p>After Madison discovered the real nature of her father's death, she began digging into the cold case and decided to try and solve the crime herself. </p> <p>In her efforts to find her father's killer, she launched a podcast called <em>Ice Cold Case</em>. </p> <p>"I started asking questions, diving into it and that's when I realised it was much more layered than even I could have imagined," she said.</p> <p>One line of theory by investigators was that JC's death was a home invasion gone wrong, but Madison said things just don't add up to support that.</p> <p>"When you dive into the police files, it's very clear that this is suspicious," she said.</p> <p>"A home invasion to my knowledge is usually very quick and something of value is stolen, but nothing was taken and this home invasion lasted for over 30 minutes.</p> <p>"It just seemed suspicious that someone would feel so comfortable to break into a house and stick around for that long and not steal anything at all - it feels like it was planned and very intentional."</p> <p>Madison admitted that is has been jarring looking into the death of her father, especially when no one has been held accountable, but she has put her own fears aside in the hopes of finding out what really happened. </p> <p>"I do feel a little uneasy putting myself out there in this very public way, but I just feel like justice for my dad is so much more important than worrying about my own safety if his killer is still out there," she said.</p> <p>"But I really want to find out what happened for him and for my own closure, so I have sort of pushed that to the side."</p> <p><em>Image credits: Today Extra</em></p>

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Lilie James' grieving family breaks silence as body is found in manhunt for suspect

<p>Lilie James' devastated family have spoken out for the first time, following her <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/news/news/slain-st-andrew-s-staffer-identified" target="_blank" rel="noopener">tragic death</a>. </p> <p>The 21-year-old water polo coach was found dead with serious head injuries at the gymnasium bathroom of St Andrew’s Cathedral School on Wednesday night. </p> <p>Her male colleague and ex-boyfriend Paul Thijssen is believed to be involved in her <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/news/news/tragic-new-details-emerge-in-alleged-murder-of-lilie-james" target="_blank" rel="noopener">alleged murder</a>, when he went missing at The Gap in Vaucluse, after reportedly calling the police informing them of a body on school grounds. </p> <p>A body has reportedly been found at the base of the cliffs in Diamond Bay Reserve, however police are currently unable to confirm whether the body was that of 24-year-old Thijssen. </p> <p>“A police operation is currently underway to retrieve a body in Vaucluse,” NSW Police said in an earlier statement.</p> <p>“No further information is available at this time.”</p> <p>Detectives are currently investigating the possibility that Thijssen had taken his own life, as The Gap is a notorious suicide spot, and Thijssen's backpack and an item linked to the alleged homicide was found there. </p> <p>On Friday morning, her family have broken their silence following the grim discovery. </p> <p>“We are devastated and heartbroken by the loss of our beautiful Lilie James,” the family said in a statement released by the police. </p> <p>“She was vibrant, outgoing, and very much loved by her family and friends. We are tremendously grateful for the support of our community at this difficult time.</p> <p>“As a police investigation is underway, we will not be providing further comments.</p> <p>“We ask that you please respect our privacy.”</p> <p>Students have been paying tribute to the fallen water polo coach with a growing flower memorial at the school's entrance. </p> <p>A few of the students she coached also told<em> 7NEWS.com.au </em>that she was an “amazing” and “encouraging” coach.</p> <p>"She always had a smile on her face,” one student said.</p> <p>“You will be in all of our prayers and hearts. Thank you for making PE so much fun, thank you for being an amazing and strong coach, and thank you for being there. We love you,” another student said.</p> <p><em>Images: 7NEWS/Facebook</em></p>

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Can Israel and Hamas be held to account for alleged crimes against civilians?

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/amy-maguire-129609">Amy Maguire</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-newcastle-1060">University of Newcastle</a></em></p> <p><a href="https://www.redcross.org.au/ihl/">International humanitarian law</a> – the law of armed conflict – aims to constrain how wars are fought. It is designed to protect noncombatants and limit the means of warfare.</p> <p>As each hour brings news of further horror in the Israel-Hamas conflict, what role should international law be playing? And does it actually have any capacity to constrain the behaviour of the combatants?</p> <h2>A humanitarian nightmare is unfolding</h2> <p>On <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2023/10/16/middleeast/israel-hamas-gaza-war-explained-week-2-mime-intl/index.html">October 7</a>, the Hamas militant group launched thousands of rockets against Israel in advance of a ground attack. Militants <a href="https://abcnews.go.com/International/live-updates/israel-gaza-hamas/?id=103804516#:%7E:text=ABC%20News%20Chief%20Global%20Affairs,war%20in%20Israel%20and%20Gaza.&amp;text=At%20least%201%2C400%20people%20have,7%2C%20Israeli%20authorities%20said.">killed</a> more than 1,400 people and wounded 3,400 others in towns and kibbutzim across southern Israel. It was the <a href="https://theconversation.com/deadliest-day-for-jews-since-the-holocaust-spurs-a-crisis-of-confidence-in-the-idea-of-israel-and-its-possible-renewal-215507">deadliest day</a> for Jewish people since the Holocaust.</p> <p>Most of those killed were civilians, including many <a href="https://abcnews.go.com/International/horror-israeli-authorities-show-footage-hamas-atrocities-reporters-notebook/story?id=104015431#:%7E:text=It%20was%20part%20of%20the,injured%20in%20Israel%2C%20authorities%20said.">children</a> who were shot, blown up or burned to death. Hundreds of young people were also <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2023/10/08/israel-festival-attack-gaza-militants/">massacred</a> at a music festival, and Hamas took around 200 <a href="https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/former-hamas-chief-meshaal-says-israeli-captives-include-high-ranking-officers-2023-10-16/">hostages</a> back to Gaza.</p> <p>Israel is responding to this attack with <a href="https://abcnews.go.com/International/live-updates/israel-gaza-hamas/?id=103804516#:%7E:text=ABC%20News%20Chief%20Global%20Affairs,war%20in%20Israel%20and%20Gaza.&amp;text=At%20least%201%2C400%20people%20have,7%2C%20Israeli%20authorities%20said.">airstrikes</a>, which have to date <a href="https://www.wsj.com/livecoverage/israel-hamas-war-gaza-palestinians/card/latest-death-tolls-in-gaza-and-israel-xJRhBt04VQMocRuYUtsA">killed</a> at least 4,000 people in Gaza and injured thousands more. The vast majority of these casualties are Palestinian civilians.</p> <p>Israel has also rapidly mobilised around <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2023/10/10/israel-military-draft-reservists/">360,000 reservists</a> in preparation for an anticipated ground offensive on Gaza.</p> <p>In recent days, a blast at a <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2023/10/17/world/middleeast/gaza-hospital-explosion-israel.html">Gaza hospital</a> killed hundreds, including patients and displaced people seeking sanctuary. Hamas and several Arab states have <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/oct/18/israel-faces-blame-from-regional-allies-over-gaza-hospital-deaths">blamed</a> Israel for the explosion, while Israel has <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2023/10/17/world/middleeast/islamic-jihad-gaza-hospital-israel.html">blamed</a> Palestinian Islamic Jihad.</p> <p>The situation in Gaza is dire for people with urgent needs, including <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-10-18/israel-gaza-war-live-updates-october-18/102989182?utm_campaign=abc_news_web&amp;utm_content=link&amp;utm_medium=content_shared&amp;utm_source=abc_news_web#live-blog-post-55243">5,000 women</a> due to give birth this month and <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2023/10/16/world/middleeast/gaza-evacuation-twin-babies-hospital.html#:%7E:text=The%20babies%2C%20Nuha%20and%20Fatin,of%20an%20Israeli%20ground%20invasion.">newborn babies</a> whose families cannot find drinking water to prepare formula.</p> <p>Meanwhile, Israel has <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/oct/12/no-power-water-or-fuel-to-gaza-until-hostages-freed-says-israeli-minister">cut off</a> water, electricity and fuel supplies to Gaza and ordered a <a href="https://theconversation.com/gaza-is-being-strangled-why-israels-evacuation-order-violates-international-law-215787">total siege</a> of the territory. Israel has also ordered residents of northern Gaza to <a href="https://www.hrw.org/news/2023/10/16/why-israels-gaza-evacuation-order-so-alarming">evacuate</a> to the south. Aid agencies have been unable to provide desperately needed <a href="https://time.com/6324539/israel-gaza-humanitarian-aid-egypt-border/">humanitarian assistance</a> to civilians through the border crossing with Egypt.</p> <p>Prior to this latest horrific escalation, Gaza was already entrenched in a <a href="https://theconversation.com/gaza-has-been-blockaded-for-16-years-heres-what-a-complete-siege-and-invasion-could-mean-for-vital-supplies-215359">humanitarian crisis</a>. The situation now is beyond comprehension.</p> <p><a href="https://www.abc.net.au/listen/programs/radionational-breakfast/gaza-610/102983118">Léo Cans</a>, the head of mission for Doctors Without Borders in Palestine, said hospitals are being overwhelmed and hundreds will die without electricity being restored: "This is something that is known and could be prevented just by letting fuel and supplies inside Gaza. What is ahead of us is beyond words […] at the end of the road it’s a big wall, and this big wall is full of dead people."</p> <h2>Principles governing the conduct of war</h2> <p>International humanitarian law is a pragmatic body of law. Its existence acknowledges the inevitability of armed conflict and it aims to mitigate war’s impact on people.</p> <p>International humanitarian law is not, in itself, concerned with the justifications for why combatants engage in war. It applies even in situations where a state is entitled to act in self-defence under broader international law.</p> <p>We are witnessing gross violations of fundamental humanitarian law principles in the conflict. Here are some examples:</p> <p><strong>Distinction between civilians and combatants</strong></p> <p>Attacks are considered <a href="https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/en/ihl-treaties/api-1977/article-51">unlawful</a> if they are:</p> <ul> <li> <p>directed specifically against civilians</p> </li> <li> <p>launched indiscriminately without distinction between civilians and combatants</p> </li> <li> <p>or directed at military targets but anticipated to cause harm to civilians disproportionate to the military advantage being sought.</p> </li> </ul> <p><strong>Methods of warfare</strong></p> <p>It is <a href="https://casebook.icrc.org/law/conduct-hostilities#iii_1">unlawful</a> to conduct war in a manner that causes unnecessary suffering. Attacks targeting civilians are fundamentally unnecessary and, therefore, illegal.</p> <p><strong>Collective punishment</strong></p> <p>The fourth Geneva Convention prohibits <a href="https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/en/ihl-treaties/gciv-1949/article-33">collective punishment</a>: "No protected person may be punished for an offence he or she has not personally committed. Collective penalties and likewise all measures of intimidation or of terrorism are prohibited."</p> <p>This prohibition reflects the idea of <a href="https://guide-humanitarian-law.org/content/article/3/collective-punishment/">individual criminal responsibility</a> under international criminal law. Prosecutions for breaches of humanitarian law are directed towards individuals who can be proven responsible, rather than against states or populations.</p> <p><strong>Humanitarian protection</strong></p> <p>Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions requires <a href="https://www.icrc.org/en/doc/war-and-law/treaties-customary-law/geneva-conventions/overview-geneva-conventions.htm">humane protection</a> for all people in enemy hands. It prohibits murder and hostage-taking. It also requires the provision of humanitarian assistance to all people without distinction.</p> <p><strong>Obligations of occupying powers</strong></p> <p>It is arguable Israel is a de facto occupying power of the Gaza Strip because it has such a <a href="https://theconversation.com/gaza-is-being-strangled-why-israels-evacuation-order-violates-international-law-215787">high level of control</a> over people’s lives. For example, it has the ability to shut off supplies of essential life services. The argument Israel is occupying Gaza will be strengthened should Israel launch a ground invasion.</p> <p>As such, the rules of international humanitarian law on occupiers are also relevant. These include an obligation to <a href="https://ihl-databases.icrc.org/en/ihl-treaties/hague-conv-iv-1907/regulations-art-43#:%7E:text=Regulations%3A%20Art.-,43,in%20force%20in%20the%20country.">protect</a> civilians from attacks and <a href="https://humanrights.gov.au/our-work/commission-general/international-covenant-civil-and-political-rights-human-rights-your#:%7E:text=opinions%20without%20interference.-,2.,other%20media%20of%20his%20choice.">respect their human rights</a>.</p> <h2>Hamas and humanitarian law</h2> <p>International humanitarian law applies to all combatants, whether they are state or non-state actors. UN independent experts say Hamas has clearly committed <a href="https://www.ohchr.org/en/press-releases/2023/10/israeloccupied-palestinian-territory-un-experts-deplore-attacks-civilians">war crimes</a>, including the murders and hostage-taking of Israeli civilians.</p> <p>Hamas also put Palestinian civilians in harm’s way by <a href="https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/hamas-tells-gaza-residents-stay-home-israel-ground-offensive-looms-2023-10-13/#:%7E:text=Eyad%20Al%2DBozom%2C%20spokesman%20for,your%20homes%2C%20and%20your%20places.">telling them</a> not to evacuate to southern Gaza, as ordered by Israel. The group has a history of using civilians as <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-the-laws-of-war-apply-to-the-conflict-between-israel-and-hamas-215493">human shields</a> as a <a href="https://stratcomcoe.org/cuploads/pfiles/hamas_human_shields.pdf">strategic tool</a> in conflicts with Israel.</p> <p>However, holding Hamas accountable for violating international humanitarian law is very challenging. As a non-state actor, Hamas is not a member of forums like the United Nations, where pressure may be brought to bear on member states.</p> <p>If individual Hamas militants are apprehended, they could be charged with <a href="https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/interview/2023/10/17/how-have-israel-and-hamas-broken-laws-war">war crimes</a> and tried in Israeli courts or the International Criminal Court. Even though Hamas is a non-state actor, <a href="https://www.icc-cpi.int/victims/state-palestine">Palestine</a> has accepted the court’s jurisdiction.</p> <p>In fact, the International Criminal Court opened an <a href="https://www.lawfaremedia.org/article/where-does-the-icc-palestine-investigation-stand">investigation</a> into alleged war crimes in Palestine in 2021. The current Gaza conflict would fall within the court’s mandate and could lead it to direct greater energy to that ongoing investigation.</p> <p>The court’s chief prosecutor, Karim Khan, said on October 13: "We have jurisdiction for any Rome Statute crimes […] committed by Palestinians in Israel and also we have clear jurisdiction for any crimes committed by the forces of Israel in Palestine."</p> <h2>Israel and humanitarian law</h2> <p>Israel and its allies also have a complex relationship with international humanitarian law.</p> <p>One key issue is Israel’s right to self-defence in response to the October 7 attack by Hamas. International law confirms a state may use force to <a href="https://casebook.icrc.org/a_to_z/glossary/self-defence#:%7E:text=Self%2Ddefense%20in%20international%20law,Charter%20and%20customary%20international%20law.">defend</a> itself in response to an armed attack. Israel, the United States and other allies <a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/speeches-remarks/2023/10/10/remarks-by-president-biden-on-the-terrorist-attacks-in-israel-2/">contend</a> the Hamas attack triggered Israel’s <a href="https://www.foreignminister.gov.au/minister/penny-wong/speech/speech-senate-hamas-attacks-israel-senate-motion-parliament-house">right to self-defence</a>.</p> <p>But there is a distinction to be drawn between a state’s right to self-defence and what that right permits, in the sense of how war is conducted.</p> <p>For example, UN independent experts have <a href="https://www.ohchr.org/en/press-releases/2023/10/israeloccupied-palestinian-territory-un-experts-deplore-attacks-civilians">condemned</a> Israel’s “indiscriminate military attacks” against Palestinian civilians: "This amounts to collective punishment. There is no justification for violence that indiscriminately targets innocent civilians, whether by Hamas or Israeli forces. This is absolutely prohibited under international law and amounts to a war crime."</p> <p>Neither <a href="https://arabcenterdc.org/resource/the-international-criminal-courts-failure-to-hold-israel-accountable/">Israel</a> nor the <a href="https://www.hrw.org/news/2020/09/02/qa-international-criminal-court-and-united-states">United States</a> is a party to the International Criminal Court. Neither state would accept the court’s jurisdiction over its nationals. Indeed, the United States has <a href="https://www.state.gov/the-united-states-opposes-the-icc-investigation-into-the-palestinian-situation/">condemned</a> the court’s decision to open its investigation into alleged war crimes in Palestine.</p> <p>In time, the court may seek to hold Israeli nationals accountable for war crimes, but its capacity to do so seems very limited.</p> <h2>What about the United Nations?</h2> <p>UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has <a href="https://www.voanews.com/a/un-s-guterres-denounces-collective-punishment-of-palestinians/7315616.html">called</a> for an immediate ceasefire.</p> <p>He said the grievances of the Palestinian people after more than 50 years of occupation do not “justify the acts of terror committed by Hamas”. And he said the Hamas attack on October 7 does not “justify the collective punishment of the Palestinian people”.</p> <p>UN human rights chief Volker Türk has also <a href="https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/un-human-rights-lead-warns-of-consequences-for-breaching-humanitarian-law-amid-israel-hamas-war-1.6605453">warned</a> all parties that violations of humanitarian law will have consequences, and those who commit war crimes will be held accountable.</p> <p>But the <a href="https://www.un.org/securitycouncil/#:%7E:text=The%20Security%20Council%20has%20primary,to%20comply%20with%20Council%20decisions.">UN Security Council</a>, which is charged with maintaining international peace and security, has yet to agree on a <a href="https://news.un.org/en/story/2023/10/1142467">statement</a> on the conflict.</p> <p>The <a href="https://reliefweb.int/report/occupied-palestinian-territory/4-members-favour-5-against-security-council-rejects-russian-federations-resolution-calling-immediate-humanitarian-ceasefire-israel-palestine-crisis">debate</a> in the council since the latest escalation in this perpetual conflict demonstrates the deep diplomatic fault lines between the key global players and the warring parties.</p> <p>At this point, a sad reality is that international law and global institutions can do little to constrain the actions of the combatants on both sides or provide assistance to the millions at grave risk of harm.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/215705/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/amy-maguire-129609"><em>Amy Maguire</em></a><em>, Associate Professor in Human Rights and International Law, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-newcastle-1060">University of Newcastle</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/can-israel-and-hamas-be-held-to-account-for-alleged-crimes-against-civilians-215705">original article</a>.</em></p>

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Dave Hughes mugged by "big man" on Melbourne street

<p>Comedian Dave 'Hughesy' Hughes has shared an incident on air about a harrowing encounter he had while grabbing dinner in Melbourne for his family on a Tuesday night.</p> <p>The 52-year-old radio host recounted the incident during his appearance on 2DAY FM’s morning show, "Hughesy, Ed &amp; Erin", with fellow comedian and stand-in host, Kate Langbroek.</p> <p>Hughes explained that he had ridden his electric bike to a nearby takeaway restaurant close to his residence to order dinner for his family.</p> <p>Unfortunately, upon his arrival, he discovered that the restaurant he had in mind was closed. Frustrated by the situation, he took out his phone with the intention of calling his wife to discuss alternative dinner plans when, suddenly, his phone was snatched from his hand.</p> <p>While recalling the incident, Hughes expressed how startled he was, saying, "I’m on the bike, and I put my phone up to my ear, and then all of a sudden, someone grabs my phone out of my hand, just grabbed it, yes, stole my phone."</p> <p>He went on to describe the thief as a "big man" who appeared to be under the influence of drugs, suspecting him to be a "meth head": “I look and it’s a man, a big man, and he is off his nut. I’m gonna say he’s a meth head, you know what I'm talking about.”</p> <p>The assailant's erratic behaviour didn't end with the phone theft. Hughes continued, "He tries to talk into the phone and he goes, ‘You weren’t even talking to anyone.’ Like it was my fault, like I was pretending to make a phone call."</p> <p>Rather than pursuing the thief on his bike, Hughes resorted to shouting, "Give me my phone back!"</p> <p>The situation eventually deescalated as the man threw the phone to the ground and stumbled away, eventually confronting a nearby vehicle. "He just staggered off and basically attacked a car,” said Hughes.</p> <p>Langbroek criticised Hughes for not immediately contacting the police after the unsettling incident, expressing concern about tolerating such dysfunction in society.  “I know that we’re all like, that’s sort of how it rolls," she said, "but when you start accepting dysfunction like that, then dysfunction will rule.”</p> <p>Hughes, who had lost his driver's license the previous month due to a series of minor traffic violations that resulted in the loss of his accumulated points, had been relying on his electric bike for transportation. </p> <p><em>Image: 2DAY FM</em></p>

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Lucy Letby: it is not being ‘beige’, ‘average’ or ‘normal’ that makes her crimes so hard to understand

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/lizzie-seal-183829">Lizzie Seal</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sussex-1218">University of Sussex</a></em></p> <p>In seeking to understand the crimes of Lucy Letby, the neonatal nurse who murdered seven babies in her care, a fixation about how “ordinary” she appears to be has emerged. At times like this, we seek answers, which perhaps explains the vague sense that understanding this apparent inconsistency can teach us a lesson for the future. But that is a circle that cannot be squared.</p> <p>Letby was sentenced to whole life imprisonment for the murders of seven babies carried out while she worked at Countess of Chester Hospital, in north-west England. She was found guilty of the attempted murder of six other babies and is suspected of having harmed more. She is variously described as a “serial killer” and a “serial killer nurse”. Letby meets the <a href="https://www.aic.gov.au/publications/tandi/tandi346">generally accepted criminological definition</a> of a serial killer – that is, someone who commits three or more murders on separate occasions which are not for revenge or material gain.</p> <p>Everyday understandings of serial killing are consistent with the criminological definition and, arguably, the “serial killer” is a compelling example of the overlap – and perhaps cross-pollination – between the academic and wider understandings of crime.</p> <p>Both academic and wider understandings of serial killing are shaped by portrayals and archetypes from fiction, film, television and true crime podcasts and documentaries. The ubiquity of portrayals of serial killers mean we reach for certain stock explanations of their actions.</p> <p>Quoting police officers involved in the investigation and former colleagues of Letby, news articles describe her as <a href="https://news.sky.com/story/who-is-lucy-letby-the-average-nurse-who-became-britains-most-prolific-child-killer-12943602">“average”</a> and <a href="https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/23003681/beige-lucy-letby-killer-nurse-death-toll/">“beige”</a>. Shock and confusion abound about the crimes of an “ordinary” young woman who did not stand out in terms of character or ability.</p> <p>The puzzle these descriptions create is how a “serial killer nurse” could possibly be someone so unremarkable. Letby lived in a three-bedroom semi-detached house, with a <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2023/aug/18/lucy-letby-the-beige-and-average-nurse-who-turned-into-a-baby-killer">“happy Prosecco season”</a> sign adorning the wall of her kitchen and a collection of soft toys in her bedroom. Although <a href="https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/nurse-lucy-letby-motive-why-would-she-kill-babies-b2397008.html">motives were suggested</a> by the prosecution during her trial, they feel unsatisfactory.</p> <h2>Looking for answers in the wrong place</h2> <p>Our inability to parse “satisfying” explanations for Letby’s actions relates to her departure from accepted cultural scripts of serial killing. A prominent serial killer script is that of perceived deviance and transgression, whereby something pathological about the killer accounts for their personality and actions.</p> <p>Frequently, this pathology is along the lines of mental illness, as in one of the classic templates for modern cultural scripts of serial killing, Norman Bates in the film Psycho. Another recurrent portrayal is the serial killer who is motivated by sexual perversion. Lucy Letby’s apparent normality means she cannot be read through this script.</p> <p>The fact that <a href="https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-030-87488-9">she is a woman</a> while serial killers are overwhelmingly male adds to this (although serial killing by women, including nurses, is <a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-12423909/Other-cases-missed-Detective-nailed-Beverley-Allitt-says-like-Lucy-Letby-read-book-chillingly-similar-Angel-Death-case-30-years-believes-killer-nurses-have.html">not without precedent</a>).</p> <p><a href="https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1057/9780230369061_6">Popular culture has taught us</a> that a serial killer is a certain type of person. They are often even glamorised in films and TV shows. In his <a href="https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/36061">1996 memoir My Dark Places</a>, the novelist James Ellroy comments on the figure of the serial killer in 1990s popular culture: “serial killers were very unprosaic. They were hip, slick and cool”.</p> <p>Ellroy’s comment gets to the heart of why Lucy Letby feels like a dissonant serial killer. She is prosaic. But this is a red herring. We may have absorbed tropes about serial killers but that does not mean we understand them or their motives in any more depth than we understand why Letby killed.</p> <p>There is nothing truly conclusive about saying someone killed for power or sexual gratification, just as there is nothing conclusive about any of the explanations offered for Letby’s actions. Our belief that we understand reasons for serial killing – and thereby deviations from those reasons such as appearing “ordinary” – is based on familiar but incomplete narratives.</p> <p>Our cultural scripts about serial killers do not offer good explanations for their crimes. In reality, it is incredibly unusual for someone like Lucy Letby to be a serial killer because it is incredibly unusual for anyone to be a serial killer.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/211960/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/lizzie-seal-183829">Lizzie Seal</a>, Professor of Criminology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sussex-1218">University of Sussex</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/lucy-letby-it-is-not-being-beige-average-or-normal-that-makes-her-crimes-so-hard-to-understand-211960">original article</a>.</em></p>

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