Monthly Archives: August 2019

Canberra home price growth among country’s strongest

Canberra ended 2017 on a high for the property market with dwelling values up one per cent over the final quarter of the year, according to CoreLogic.
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The CoreLogic Hedonic Home Value Index report said the capital’s dwelling prices edged 0.2 per cent higher in December and it was 4.9 per cent higher throughout the year.

The report found houses in the capital are rising at more than double the rate of unit values, with house prices up 5.8 per cent over the year while unit prices are only just beating inflation at 2.1 per cent. !function(e,t,s,i){var n=”InfogramEmbeds”,o=e.getElementsByTagName(“script”),d=o[0],r=/^http:/.test(e.location)?”http:”:”https:”;if(/^\/{2}/.test(i)&&(i=r+i),window[n]&&window[n].initialized)window[n].process&&window[n].process();else if(!e.getElementById(s)){var a=e.createElement(“script”);a.async=1,a.id=s,a.src=i,d.parentNode.insertBefore(a,d)}}(document,0,”infogram-async”,”https://e.infogram苏州夜总会招聘/js/dist/embed-loader-min.js”);

National property markets ended 2017 with a whimper, with half of ‘s capital cities recording falling house prices in December. These declines are likely to continue over 2018, according head of CoreLogic research Tim Lawless who said the transition towards weaker housing market conditions had been clear but gradual.

“From a macro perspective, late 2016 marked a peak in the pace of capital gains across with national dwelling values rising at the rolling quarterly pace of 3.7 per cent over the three months to November,” Mr Lawless said.

“In 2017 we saw growth rates and transactional activity gradually lose steam, with national month-on-month capital gains slowing to 0 per cent in October and November before turning negative in December.” !function(e,t,s,i){var n=”InfogramEmbeds”,o=e.getElementsByTagName(“script”),d=o[0],r=/^http:/.test(e.location)?”http:”:”https:”;if(/^\/{2}/.test(i)&&(i=r+i),window[n]&&window[n].initialized)window[n].process&&window[n].process();else if(!e.getElementById(s)){var a=e.createElement(“script”);a.async=1,a.id=s,a.src=i,d.parentNode.insertBefore(a,d)}}(document,0,”infogram-async”,”https://e.infogram苏州夜总会招聘/js/dist/embed-loader-min.js”);

Among the capitals, the weakest conditions are concentrated in Sydney and Darwin.

Mr Lawless said, “Sydney’s housing market has become the most significant drag on the headline growth figures.”

Sydney dwelling values were down 0.9 per cent over the month to be 2.1 per cent lower over the December quarter.

Hobart, Melbourne and Canberra had the strongest growth, up 12.3 per cent, 8.9 per cent and 4.9 per cent respectively.

“In 2018, the housing market performance is likely to be significantly different relative to previous years. We’re likely to see lower to negative growth rates across previously strong markets, more cautious buyers, and ongoing regulator vigilance of credit standards and investor activity,” Mr Lawless said.

– With Jennifer Duke

Follow Han Nguyen on Facebook and Twitter. !function(e,t,s,i){var n=”InfogramEmbeds”,o=e.getElementsByTagName(“script”),d=o[0],r=/^http:/.test(e.location)?”http:”:”https:”;if(/^\/{2}/.test(i)&&(i=r+i),window[n]&&window[n].initialized)window[n].process&&window[n].process();else if(!e.getElementById(s)){var a=e.createElement(“script”);a.async=1,a.id=s,a.src=i,d.parentNode.insertBefore(a,d)}}(document,0,”infogram-async”,”https://e.infogram苏州夜总会招聘/js/dist/embed-loader-min.js”);

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It’s my moment to go: Whateley explains ABC defection

Gerard Whateley has opened up about why he swapped the ABC for a much smaller audience on Melbourne radio station SEN.
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The veteran broadcaster, who announced his shock departure from Grandstand and Offsiders on Monday night, said after 13 years at ABC it was time to take a risk.

“I’m 43, I’ve been there [the ABC] since I was in my 20s,” he told Fairfax Media. “It’s my moment to go and have a crack at something else.

“I hope people will come with me and give me a chance,” he said. “I’m not changing. They [SEN] want me for who I am. I love every sport that comes through Melbourne. We’re a broad church and I want to be a conduit to that broad church.”

Eyebrows were raised on Monday night when Whateley announced he wouldn’t get to complete his Ashes commentary for the ABC. But the sports commentator said there was no bad blood between himself and the ABC.

Whateley also denied jumping ship for a bigger pay cheque, and said SEN was not a stepping stone to an ABC rival such as 3AW. The Age understands the 43-year-old has turned down offers from 3AW, which commands the largest share of Melbourne’s radio listeners, on at least two occasions.

“I’ll be in Minneapolis for the Super Bowl,” he said. “I’ll be leading that coverage on SEN. That’s serious. That level of commitment and audaciousness, that got me.”

However, sources have said Whateley will get a handsome salary and may receive other benefits such as equity. SEN’s new owner, Craig Hutchison’s Crocmedia, is looking to rapidly expand the radio station’s reach and broadcasting rights.

In addition to becoming SEN’s chief sports caller, the 43-year-old will also host a morning sports program called Whateley. His first day replacing Kevin Bartlett will be Monday, January 29. Bartlett is moving to an afternoon slot.

In the final radio survey of 2017, SEN held an 3.2 point overall share over Melbourne’s radio audience – well below 3AW’s 15 point share and ABC’s 9.3 point share in the local market.

Representatives for ABC wouldn’t be drawn on when a replacement for Whateley would be announced.

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Baklava cheesecake puts Zaaki Expresso on the map

The road to fame: Zaaki Espresso’s baklava cheesecake and Campos coffee. Picture: Marina NeilZaaki Espresso, 402A Maitland Rd, Mayfield West, Mon-Fri: 6am-3:30pm, Sat: 7am-2pm.
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Considering how many coffee enthusiasts swear by the quality of Campos coffee, it is still fairly difficult to find a café that grinds their beans here in Newcastle. The famous Sydney roastery is represented locally by two large cafes and only a couple of other smaller outlets around the entirety of our coffee-loving city.

This commitment to exclusive supply is not unusual in the coffee game. Established roasting houses like Campos always make sure that their clients – that is, the café – can serve their customers – that is, you and me – a coffee blend that no other place on the block can get their hands on. In a larger coffee market like the Sydney CBD, this can often present impossible problems. In a single kilometre radius surrounding the Centrepoint tower, Campos roasters currently supplies their beans to 11 different espresso bars.

Magic happens: Zaaki Espresso barista Penny Saris. Picture: Marina Neil

In Newcastle we don’t have anything like those sorts of issues. Over in Mayfield West, Zaaki Espresso owner Penny Saris does not just have the Campos Superior Blend all to herself, but she is pouring her coffees as skilfully as any inner Sydney barista. Her latte art is the obvious product of a good few years of experience behind a machine and is definitely impressive. The service is warm and professional. My double shot flat white ($4) arrives at a perfect temperature and has everything that a flagship blend from a famous coffee roaster should have.

If this was all that was on offer at this cafe, it would be more than worth a visit. But only some of the story of Zaaki Espresso actually revolves around the coffee and the warmth with which it is served. Some might say that an even better tale can be told by the blends being put together in the kitchen.

It is in here that the Greek Pennyand her Jordanian husband Aras Ezmigna have united to create flavours that may not be on any other menu in Newcastle. Aras only uses spices imported directly from Jordan and when sprinkled over Shakshuka ($14) – a Middle Eastern dish of eggs baked in chilli and tomato – or tossed through his house made felafels, they bring a freshness and authenticity of flavour that is instantly recognisable.

Penny is equally guided by her heritage when creating her Greek-inspired sweets. Regular Zaaki customers will not hesitate to tell you about the house-madebaklava ($3.50)Turkish delight andher sumptuous pistachio cheesecake (both$6).

Yet Penny can bake you something that has become more famous than all of these combined. It may be because it’s a cake that in itself is a combination – the nutty and crunchy sweetness of a classic baklava baked atop a smooth and creamy cheesecake base. If Penny has become famous for something apart from her coffee, then her baklava cheesecake ($6 slice/$45 whole) is undoubtedly the culprit. Unique, inventive and a very different type of exclusive blend.

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Note leads man to find red-bellied black snake in car engine

The car, the snake and the note. Photos: supplied”This afternoon a red belly slithered up into your front left tyre. Please be careful,” the note read.
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Despite the warning, Michael Garbutt was still caught by surprise when he found a venomous snake under the bonnet of his car.

Out for an evening walk at Kurnell on December 28, he returned to his car parked next to the skate park to find the note on his windscreen.

“So I popped the bonnet and there it was coiled up underneath,” the high school teacher said.

“To say I was shocked is an understatement. On reflection I don’t think I would have put my hand out to pop the bonnet if I had known it was there.

“My main concern was how do I get rid of it?

“I looked at Google to find a local snake catcher and called him up.”

Michael found the number of Andrew Melrose of Shire Snake Catchers of Engadine who headed straight out to Kurnell.

“By the time he got there the snake had slithered down into the engine,” Michael said.

“It took about an hour for the snake catcher to coax it out.

“The snake was trying to bite the snake hook. The guy ended up catching it with his hand and just chucked it in a bag.”

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Mr Melrose said red-bellied black snakes are common at Kurnell.

“I had the contract to catch snakes with the Caltex oil refinery and I’ve [caught] hundreds of black snakes out there,” he said.

“Because the peninsula is swampland the snakes live there because they eat frogs and eels. They are out there but they are quite inoffensive unless you touch them.”

Mr Melrose said it is common to find them in cars.

“If they get startled they look for the first place that is safe.

“The place I found it was very bare. There was no place for the snake to escape. People would have startled it and the only place for it to hide was the car.

“The driver could have driven off unaware and parked and the snake would have left the car when it felt safe.

“Snakes will do anything to stay away. That’s why they get into a car.

“It was in the guard of the the wheel. I tapped the metal to make it move. It went under the motor to the front bumper.

“I tapped that area and it climbed up into the guard. I tapped the metal again and it crawled into the end of the coil suspension in the right-hand font wheel. And that’s when I tried to gently coax it out by touching its body.

“Its head came out and it started biting the tyre. It slid down onto the ground and that’s when I got it.”

Mr Melrose said he wasn’t worried.

“I’ve done it my whole life. I can read the animal. It looks simple but if you haven’t done it before you can get killed real quick.

“I touch it gently because I don’t want to hurt the snake. That’s why I use my hands and not gloves. The less pressure on it the less likely it is to bite.

“We’ve still got a few months of the snake season to go and we are coming into a time when they are on the move.”

Mr Melrose reminded people that snakes only bite out of defence.

“No snake ever attacks,” he said.

“The snake doesn’t need rescuing. It’s the people that need rescuing.”

The Leader

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Chinan child sex abusers on notice in Thailand

Girls working in Pattaya, Thailand.n Tony Kirwan, 47, has overseen the rescue of more than 1,400 children from sexual exploitation and human trafficking. Mr Kirwan established Destiny Rescue in 2001, his team works undercover with anti-trafficking police, rescuing children, making arrests and closing brothels. DR has worked with police on numerous raids, including three successful raids in 2015, which saw 12 girls rescued and six pimps arrested. Those children have been cared for in one of Destiny Rescue??????s 13 homes around Southeast Asia.Pattaya: n paedophiles hoping to stay under the radar in Thailand are facing tougher scrutiny from a Royal Thai Police-led unit tasked with policing sex crimes against children.
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Up to 180 suspected foreign child sex abusers, including ns, regularly visit or live in Pattaya, a city notorious for its seedy nightlife, according to a child protection organisation.

Supagon Noja, director of Thailand’s Anti-Human Trafficking and Child Abuse Centre, says most of the suspects escape justice using increasingly sophisticated ways to interact with children, including through the internet.

“They are very clever and difficult to catch,” Supagon told Fairfax Media while flicking through files on almost 700 suspects that he has collated over years. Among the suspects in his files are ministers of religion, entertainers, retirees and school teachers.

“They move frequently – often between Thailand, the Philippines and Cambodia,” he said.

But Supagon, whose centre is caring for 41 abused children aged between seven and 17, said he expected to see increasing prosecutions after the establishment of Thailand’s Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce (TICAC), with backing from Interpol and other international police agencies.

Thailand’s military government set up the taskforce in January last year after experts warned that rising internet use in south-east Asia was fuelling the spread of material that is abusive and sexually exploitative of children.

Internet availability in the region has grown to about 50 per cent of the population but the figure rises to 58 per cent in the Philippines, where there is a booming cybersex industry.

In partnership with Philippine law enforcement agencies the International Justice Mission (IJM) has rescued 1275 children and women from sex trafficking over several years. The most notorious case there is that of former Melbourne businessman Peter Scully, a master of the “dark web” who is facing trial on 75 charges, including directing a video involving horrific torture and injuries to an 18-month-old baby.

In Thailand, where the problem is growing, internet availability reaches 67 per cent.

Neil Walsh, who heads the global cybercrime program of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, said last year paedophiles were spreading, at a “phenomenal” rate, sexually exploitative materials through an overlay of online networks that cannot be easily accessed.

“The more we work harder to remove the contents, the more they make it harder to find,” he said, adding that Thailand had become the “webcam centre for child pornography,” stripping the Philippines of the title.

Speaking on the sideline of a conference on child sex abuse in Bangkok, Jon Rouse, a member of a Queensland police unit that targets online child sex abuse networks across the world, warned the sharing of abusive and sexually child exploitation material will continue to increase in south-east Asia.

He cited a survey last year which identified 3600 individual internet addresses in the Thai capital as having shared child exploitation material over just seven days.

last year legislated to stop registered child sex offenders travelling overseas in what officials called a “world first” in the fight against child sex tourism.

The law will affect an estimated 20,000 registered offenders who have served their sentences but are still under supervision and must report to authorities.

But 46 year-old Supagon, who has been tracking child sex abusers in Pattaya for 27 years, said he believes ns who have never been caught are among foreign predators in Pattaya, where there are several hundred street children.

“We will not stop working to expose these people who come to Thailand to hurt Thai children…they have gotten away with it in the past but their time is coming,” he said.

Supagon, who is known as Kru Ja, said the abusers account for only a fraction of the millions of visitors to Thailand each year “but they damage our reputation as a good place to [visit].”

He said the victims were often street children recruited by Thai brokers who operate in an area of South Pattaya.

“I speak with the children and they tell me how they have been abused,” Supagon said.

“But it is very difficult to get them to testify in court. They are afraid.” Almost all the victims were boys, he said.

Supagon said only about 10 foreign child abuse suspects were prosecuted each year in Pattaya, where local authorities have been working to clean up its reputation as a sex tourism destination.

Interpol too has expanded its presence in the country to fight child sex abuse, recently hiring former Thai police Lieutenant-Colonel Apichart Hattasin, who for years led undercover operations in northern Thailand targeting foreign paedophiles.

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