Wednesday's news in under 5 minutes

Breaking news:

Schapelle Corby could be free by the weekend with Indonesia’s Justice Minister announcing just after 1pm today that he will sign her parole in the next three days.

Amir Samsyuddin made the announcement at a short press conference saying he is not giving the her special treatment- rather she is one of many parole applicants being considered.

1. Tragic toddler death

A 15-month old girl has died overnight in Sydney’s west

Another toddler has died after choking on the cord of a blind overnight. A 15-month old girl, from Sydney’s west was found unconscious in her cot after becoming entangled in the blind cord.

The latest incident comes just days after 16-month-old Tabitha Slade died in hospital after she became tangled in a blind cord in her bed at her Hornsby home.

Last year 18-month-old Jack Mackay died after a venetian blind cord became tangled around his neck, while he was playing in his cot at his Port Stephens home on the state’s mid-north coast.

 2. Food poisoning likely cause of mother daughter deaths in Bali

Autopsies have found that Noelene and Yvana Bischoff more than likely died from a combination of food poisoning and existing medical conditions after they ate fish at a Bali restaurant in early January.

Malcolm Bischoff, Noelene’s brother, said it appeared they both suffered from scombroid food poisoning that along with their asthma combined to cause their deaths.

Scombroid food poisoning can result from eating spoiled fish, meaning the restaurant’s preparation could have made no difference, Mr Bischoff said.

“This is just a one in a million – one in a billion – thing to happen,” he said.

“There are some more tests that still have to be done, but they more than likely won’t change the result.”

3. Simon Gittany court

Simon Gittany will be in court today for sentencing

Convicted killer Simon Gittany appears in court today for a sentencing hearing. Gittany was found guilty of the murder of his fiancé Lisa Harnum after throwing her off a balcony.

 4. Midwife tried to flee the country

A midwife ordered by a court to pay $6.6 million to a boy who developed cerebral palsy as a result of a botched home birth has been arrested at Sydney airport trying to leave the country on a one-way ticket.

For more read this post here “Midwife on the run finally arrested”

5. Chris Lane shooting

Three teenagers accused of fatally shooting Australian baseball player, Chris Lane as he jogged down an Oklahoma street, allegedly because they were bored, have appeared in a court in the US with the  youngest boy charged becoming the prosecution’s star witness.


James Edwards Jr, 16, told the court how last year his friend, Chancey Luna, 16, fired a .22 calibre hand gun from the back seat of a car driven by his friend Michael Jones, 18.

‘Chancey Luna said ‘I thought there were supposed to be blanks in the gun’,” Edwards Jr told the court.

6. Good behaviour bond for Dad who beat son

A father who beat his seven-year old boy around the face in order to punish him for taking a toy to school has walked from a Brisbane court on probation.

The Brisbane man told the boy’s school via email that he gave his son ‘ a good thrashing’ after receiving emails from the school asking him to punish his child, who had been hard to handle.

The boy told Police his father smacked him nine to 10 times in the face because he took a small toy to school.

Magistrate Anne Thacker said the incident was serious and placed the man on probation for six months and ordered him to participate in a positive parenting program. No conviction was recorded

7. Raffaele Sollecito speaks to CNN

Amanda Knox’s ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito has given an interview to CNN saying that he will return to Italy to fight his new murder conviction in the death of Knox’s onetime roommate, Meredith Kercher when he understands the ruling.

Sollecito said he thought his relationship with Knox hurt him.

“Why do they convict me?” he said. “Why do put me on the corner and say that I’m guilty just because in their minds I have to be guilty because I was her boyfriend. It doesn’t make any sense to me.”

 8. Skaf gang rapist to be released

The fifth Skaf gang rapist will be released on parole under strict conditions that he be electronically monitored and have no contact with anyone under 16.

The 30-year-old has served 13 years and three months of a 16-year-six-month sentence for his involvement in Bilal Skaf’s gang which sexually attacked girls in south west Sydney in 2000.

He will be released between February 18 and 25

9. Single parents worse off

A survey has shown that the removal of the sole parent payment was not only hurting sole mothers, it was also hurting their children.

Since January 2013, nearly 100,000 sole parents have been $60 to $160 worse off a week after the former Labor federal government shifted them from Parenting Payment (Single) on to the general unemployment benefit, Newstart Allowance.


According to a survey by parent advocacy group, The Parenthood, since the change single parents and their children have experienced a decline in nutrition and mental health, and incurred large levels of debt.

10. Call for parents to embrace free-range parenting

The National Children’s Commission Megan Mitchell has urged parents to let children play unsupervised in streets and parks for healthy “brain development”.

In a response to a survey showing that our children’s use of technology was growing she told The Australian that anxious parents were too scared to let their kids play alone in a park.

“I don’t think we can blame technology for the change and reduction in children’s active play time,” she said.

“Parents are concerned about what might happen to their child, and what other people might think of them as parents.

“It’s very hard for them to become street smart when we restrict their play environment to their bedrooms.”

 11. She confronted her rapist on YouTube.

A teacher in the US who was outed in a YouTube video by a former student who accused the teacher of molesting her has been charged with sexual abuse.

28-year-old Jamie Carrillo uploaded a video that showed her calling and confronting Andrea Cardosa claiming the abuse began in middle school.

Cardosa, 40, who later resigned from her job as an assistant principal was arrested yesterday and charged with five counts of aggravated sexual assault on a child and 11 other counts of abuse involving two victims.

(Warning this video has content involving sexual abuse that may be distressing for some viewers)

 12. Mum calls for greater vigilance on allergies

Amelie King

The mother of a Melbourne girl who suffered an allergic reaction on her first full day of school has called for greater vigilance among parents.

Joanne King’s five-year-old daughter, Amelie, suffered swelling so severe she couldn’t see after coming into contact with peanuts in the playground on Monday.

Joanne posted a picture of her daughter on Facebook which went viral and has now attracted over 30 000 comments.

What news are you talking about today?

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