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    NSW election 2015: Muslim group turns on Labor leader Luke Foley in Auburn

    2019 - 05.21

    NSW Premier Mike Baird in Auburn on Thursday morning with Liberal candidate Ronney Oueik. Photo: Brendan Esposito Mike Baird visits locals in Auburn on Thursday morning.Photography Brendan Esposito Smh,news,26th March,2015Sent from my iPadDSC_6193.JPG Photo: Brendan Esposito

    Full state election covarageLive blog from 7am

    The influential Lebanese Muslim Association has criticised Opposition Leader Luke Foley and backed his Liberal opponent in the seat of Auburn, after Labor chose not to preselect the group’s controversial preferred candidate.

    It came as Premier Mike Baird took the election fight to Auburn on Thursday, where Liberal hopeful Ronney Oueik is hoping to thwart Mr Foley’s bid for a lower house seat. Labor holds the seat by 7.2 per cent.

    Mr Foley, an upper house MP, lives just outside the electorate boundary in Concord West. He was parachuted into the seat and is fighting to raise his profile over that of the highly visible Mr Oueik, the mayor of Auburn, whose posters are blanketing the electorate.

    In an online video, Lebanese Muslim Association president, Samier Dandan, endorsed Mr Oueik. He indicated Labor should have preselected Hicham Zraika, an Auburn councillor, who “was well groomed to run for that seat”.

    More than 27 per cent of Auburn residents are Muslim, giving the electorate the second-highest Muslim population in NSW, after Lakemba.

    Mr Zraika was suspended from the Labor party for six months in February after a tribunal found he engaged in “unworthy conduct” including falsifying the meeting minutes of his own branch. The decision scuppered the plan by ALP head office to parachute him into the upper house at the election after he withdrew from preselection in Auburn to make way for Mr Foley.

    Mr Dandan said if Mr Zraika “wasn’t fit enough to run for the seat of Auburn” then the incumbent Labor MP, Barbara Perry, “could have had someone else prepared to run for the seat”. “Are we saying that Auburn doesn’t have enough good people to actually represent Auburn?” he said.

    However Mr Dandan backed Labor’s candidate Jihad Dib in the nearby seat of Lakemba. Mr Dib is a celebrated former principal at Punchbowl Boys High School.

    Mr Foley denied he had lost the endorsement of the association despite his opponent winning the endorsement of its president.

    “I think that’s somewhat of an exaggeration,” he said. “I’ve met with many members of the Lebanese Muslim Association who are very supportive of my campaign.”

    However Mr Dandan said he spoke on behalf on his entire association, claiming Mr Foley’s discussions with supportive LMA members took place “in his dreams”.

    As Fairfax Media has previously reported, the Turkish community in Auburn is reportedly concerned about Mr Foley’s membership of the Armenia-Australia Parliamentary Friendship Group, and it is understood his endorsement of the NSW Parliamentary Friends of Israel has caused disquitet in the Arab community.

    Mr Baird and Mr Oueik walked the streets of Auburn on Wednesday morning, meeting shopkeepers and locals two days out from the election.

    At a later press conferece, Mr Baird was asked about whether Mr Oueik, a property developer, posed a problem for the party, given that political donations from property developers are banned.

    “[Mr Oueik] is involved in business, he’s involved in property. Ultimately what he is doing is trying to seek election, the honour and privilege to represent the people of Auburn,” Mr Baird said.

    “There is someone running that actually lives in the electorate, loves the electorate and is actually on the ground. Where has the leader of the opposition [been] in his own electorate?”

    Earlier on Thursday morning Mr Baird visited Sydney Markets with Strathfield MP Charles Casuscelli, who is facing a strong challenge from Labor’s planning spokeswoman and former minister Jodi McKay.

    Mr Baird was warmly received by the market’s stallholders, including Anthony Giansante, a flower seller who hurriedly painted the words “Back Baird” on a cardboard box when he saw the Premier approach.

    “Saturday morning, number 1, back Baird,” Mr Giansante said. “I just believe in what he’s trying to promote and Labor is just trying to do the scare tactics.”

    Mr Foley will be at Campbelltown Hospital this morning, before travelling to Goulburn Hospital.

    – with James Robertson

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    ‘Did you abuse my son?’ mother asks priest 40 years after son died

    2019 - 05.21

    Still grieving: Audrey Nash with a picture of her son Andrew. Photo: Jonathan Carroll Andrew Nash, a smiling, bright and much-loved boy of 13. Photo: Supplied

    Andrew Michael Nash was 13 when he died in his bedroom.

    Other family members were in the Newcastle home, watching television and doing homework, at the time.

    His death, in 1974, came after an apparently uneventful day at school where his class teacher was also a serial child sex offender.

    More than 40 years later, his mother Audrey Nash, 89, wants that teacher, former Marist Brother Romuald to answer a devastating and heartbreaking question.

    “I want him to tell me if he sexually abused my son,” said Mrs Nash, who still lives in the home where her son died.

    “I’m 89 years of age. There’s no other reason why it happened, and I thought his conscience might be getting to him now.

    “I believe Andrew was abused. I believe he committed suicide. I want him [Romuald] to tell me if he abused [Andrew]. That could put my mind at rest before I die.”

    Romuald, 82, whose real name is Francis William Cable, is in jail awaiting sentence because of offences against another 19 Hunter and Sydney students in the 1960s and 1970s.

    Andrew was one of three boys in his class at Marist Brothers Hamilton who died at a young age, and in distressing circumstances.

    A second student died after an incident at a cliff at Bar Beach in 1977, aged 16, and a third died after an incident at a Merewether cliff in the 1980s when he was in his early 20s.

    On the night Andrew died, in October 1974, Romuald was one of three Marist Brothers and three Maitland-Newcastle Catholic priests who arrived at the Nash home after Mrs Nash ran into the street and begged a passing taxi driver to call an ambulance and a priest.

    “We didn’t have a phone. I was hysterical. I wanted the ambulance but I wanted a priest to deliver the last rites,” Mrs Nash said.

    “When Romuald came, I said to him: ‘What happened at school today?’ He said nothing had happened, that everything was fine. Then he said to me ‘Did Andrew leave a note?’ “

    The three priests who visited that night included former St Pius X Adamstown principal and Toronto priest Tom Brennan, who died in 2012 after he was convicted for making a false statement to police about paedophile priest John Denham, and charged with child sex offences and concealing Denham’s child sex offences.

    “They [the priests and Marist Brothers including Romuald] left and we never saw them again,” Mrs Nash said.

    “No one ever came back to the house after that night, or sent a card. Nothing. Complete silence. No compassion. No pastoral care. I was ignored. It didn’t matter that I’d lost a son. My children were in other Catholic schools but nobody said anything to them; not the priests or the Brothers or the nuns. A wall of silence from all of them. You have to wonder now what was said. These days there’s all this talk about pastoral care but I wonder where it was at that time.”

    Romuald pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting students behind his desk with other students in the room. He has admitted sexually abusing students while swimming with them, and during camps. He has admitted to sexually abusing boys at Bar Beach.

    Andrew Nash was in Romuald’s year 8 class, went on Duke of Edinburgh camps with Romuald, went to swimming training with Romuald and other sporting activities. Andrew’s late father was often absent from home because of his work, and after a significant work accident in early 1974 which left him in hospital for many months.

    Small incidents less than three months before Andrew’s death are the most troubling for Mrs Nash to recall more than four decades later.

    “He always came home from school at the same time, about 3.30,” she said.

    “There was a day where he didn’t come home. It got to 6 o’clock and I was frantic. I was about to ring the police when he came home, very subdued. I was relieved but I was also angry with him because I thought something had happened to him. I remember saying ‘Where the hell have you been?’ or something like that, and the only thing I could get out of him was that he’d been at Bar Beach.”

    In an agreed statement of facts to a Sydney District Court judge last week Romuald admitted committing offences at Bar Beach where he took boys for Duke of Edinburgh training and at least one school excursion.

    The court heard that Romuald tried to persuade boys aged 12 and 13 to strip naked in the change room while he walked naked with an erection.

    “On a couple of mornings in the months before he died, Andrew said he didn’t want to go to school,” Mrs Nash said.

    “He’d say he was sick and I knew he wasn’t so I’d tell him he had to go. Those are the sorts of things you regret. When you think you’d sent them off to that.”

    The details of how Andrew died are distressing, but show a process that stopped a coroner from finding his death was accidental.

    His younger sister raised the alarm when she tried to open his bedroom door. Mrs Nash and another son discovered his body. Andrew was in his bedroom, believed to have been doing homework, for 10 or 15 minutes.

    Coroner Reginald Radford delivered an open finding on December 19, 1974.

    “Whether he died accidentally or otherwise, the evidence adduced does not enable me to say,” he found.

    A finding of suicide would have made Andrew one of the youngest people recorded in Australia to have taken his life. Mrs Nash believes it was suicide, and the coroner was simply unable to say the word at an inquest in front of a grieving Catholic mother and her surviving son.

    Less than two years after Andrew’s death, her parish priest at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Monsignor Patrick Cotter, who was found after his death to have protected two notorious Hunter priests, was involved in the placement of Vince Ryan at Mrs Nash’s parish.

    This was after Ryan returned from a year in Melbourne following serious child sex allegations against him.

    Ryan and Mrs Nash became close friends. The priest had dinner at the Nash home each Wednesday.

    It was the charging of Ryan in October 1995 and his subsequent conviction and jailing that started Mrs Nash’s questioning of the Catholic Church after decades of working as a parish housekeeper, and significant volunteer work including as parish social secretary.

    Mrs Nash believes it is time for Catholics to speak up about the betrayal of people by the church.

    “I still believe in God. It’s just [that] the people in the church who are running it have done enormous damage, but they don’t seem to get it, do they? They still think it’s them up there, and everyone else is much lower down the scale.”

    In an anonymous obituary for Andrew in the Marist Brothers Hamilton newsletter in 1974, his fellow students and their parents were told that “God took Andrew at his best”.

    “He was at a wondrous height of innocence and beauty and holiness, and who knows what might have been?” the obituary said.

    Mrs Nash imagines what her son might have been like today, aged 54, but the much stronger image even after all these years is of the smiling, bright and much-loved boy of 13.

    “I think of him every day. I see his photos. I talk to him all the time. When people read this I don’t expect that one of the priests will ring up and say sorry. I don’t expect anything. Just as long as people know.”

    Newcastle Herald

    ❏ Support is available for those who may be distressed by phoning Lifeline 13 11 14; Mensline 1300 789 978; Kids Helpline 1800 551 800.

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    COVER HOUSE: Bolwarra Space and luxury down to last detail

    2019 - 05.21

    Space and luxury down to last detail 15 Gardenia Close Bolwarra Heights

    15 Gardenia Close Bolwarra Heights

    15 Gardenia Close Bolwarra Heights

    15 Gardenia Close Bolwarra Heights

    15 Gardenia Close Bolwarra Heights

    15 Gardenia Close Bolwarra Heights


    5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, triple garaging

    Address: 15 Gardenia Close.

    House: Colorbond and Rockcote finished brick on 3038square metres.

    Inspect: By appointment.

    Agent: Rhonda Nyquist, PRDnationwide Hunter Valley.

    ENTERTAINING is a joy in this custom-built prestige home, which boasts a resort-style swimming pool with luxurious cabana, large timber deck, tiled undercover barbecue area and enough off-street parking for 10 vehicles.

    The current owners designed their dream home 11 years ago with the aim of making it a stylish and spacious haven for visitors. Every detail has been considered and all inclusions built to a superior standard.

    Guests enter the single-storey home through double timber and slumped glass doors that are locked using an electronic security system instead of a key.

    The foyer of polished porcelain tiles and a travertine feature also has a maroon wall with a mirror, hiding plumbing that could be used to turn it into a water feature.

    Turn left and guests will come to the first of five bedrooms, with cream-coloured carpet and light fawn walls that are the base for a neutral colour palette that echoes throughout the property.

    The expansive carpeted formal lounge and dining room has chocolate-coloured blockout curtains behind silk drapery and an elephant skin-coloured feature wall, which has a Jetmaster gas fireplace that could be converted to accommodate a wood fire.

    Turn right from the foyer and guests will find another four carpeted bedrooms, all with built-in wardrobes and separated by insulated walls.

    The master bedroom has an eggplant-coloured feature wall, superb views over the outdoor entertainment area, blockout curtains and an impressive walk in-wardrobe with a shoe wall.

    Its en suite is larger than most family bathrooms, with floor-to-ceiling tiles, a frameless shower with rainwater-style head, heated towel rails, two stand-alone basins, a bath and a separate toilet.

    The main bathroom further down the hallway has a slump-glass mirror, stand-alone sink atop chocolate-coloured granite, free-standing cabinetry, a deep bath, semi-frameless shower and a separate toilet.

    An open-plan kitchen and dining area is the heart of the home.

    The kitchen has caramel-coloured Caesarstone benchtops and soft-close drawers in shades of mocha and cocoa, as well as a built-in Miele dishwasher.

    It also features a DeLonghi convection microwave oven, a walk-in butler’s pantry and room for a double-door fridge.

    A Smeg recessed stove cooktop and rangehood sits against a glass splashback and mirrored glass tiles and atop a 900mm wide oven.

    This area is just steps away from the laundry, with an indoor clothesline and plenty of storage space, and the three-car garage, which features a workshop.

    An informal living area, also with blockout curtains, opens through sliding doors to the sprawling 12-metre by 10-metre timber deck. From here, guests can move seamlessly to the tiled undercover barbecue area and bathroom.

    Walking up a few stairs covered with travertine tiles and through a frameless glass fence and visitors will reach the salt-chlorinated 12-metre by seven-metre solar-heated swimming pool, surrounded by a border of black marble granite floor tiles.

    The cabana is built using recycled timber from the Lithgow Bridge and beckons guests to recline and while away the afternoon.

    From the pool area guests can move to the large lawn with half-pipe and cubbyhouse, or the concrete pad outside the garage, which is the ideal area to rollerskate, ride bikes or park other vehicles.

    Top-line features throughout the house include solid soundproof timber doors, an in-ground lawn and hedge watering system, ducted airconditioning and Crimsafe security screens on some windows and doors.

    Jeremy Clarkson sacking: Trolls attack Top Gear producer Oisin Tymon

    2019 - 05.21

    Top Gear producer Oisin Tymon. Photo: Barcroft Media via GC ImagesClarkson a by-product of systemClarkson’s road to ruin

    The Top Gear producer, who the BBC found was “attacked” by show’s host Jeremy Clarkson, has copped a deluge of abuse online.

    Oisin Tymon was at the centre of the incident which resulted in Clarkson being sacked by the BBC and has been labelled “the most hated man ever” and a “cry baby” by social media trolls.

    Hashtags supporting Clarkson, including #bringbackclarkson and #boycottbbc, have sprung up with some users saying that Oisin “probably deserved it” and should have been the one fired.

    A BBC investigation has found that Tymon was “subject to an unprovoked physical and verbal attack” by Clarkson at the North Yorkshire hotel on March 4.

    The senior producer was “struck, resulting in swelling and bleeding to his lip” and drove himself to the emergency department for examination. I hope that prick #OisinTymon is happy getting #JeremyClarkson fired, what’s he going to produce now? Noddy? — Steve Russell (@rudge357) March 25, 2015 To meet Oisin Tymon in person and feed him the very food he denied Clarkson. Then, beat him to a pulp with a rolling pin. #LifeGoals — Pasan Weerasinghe (@PortelloFanatic) March 25, 2015 All could have been avoided if this Oisin Tymon geezer had a pair and just punched him back… #Clarkson#RIPTopGear — Lee (@sutman6) March 25, 2015 Anyone sending vile tweets to #OisinTymon should be utterly ashamed. How has the victim in this debacle become a target?! #Clarkson — Lucy Horobin (@LucyHorobin) March 25, 2015

    Oisin does not appear to have a Twitter account, while Clarkson has changed his bio to “I used to be a presenter on the BBC2 motoring show, Top Gear.”

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    Astronomers witness supermassive black hole eat its own galaxy’s star-forming gas

    2019 - 05.21

    Artist’s impression: red gas pours out of a galaxy with a supermassive black hole at its core. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab Astronomers have seen how supermassive black holes consume their host galaxy’s star-forming gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Black holes gather matter in a disc (orange), part of which is push away by a wind (blue). This powers a large-scale outflow of gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Artist’s impression: red gas pours out of a galaxy with a supermassive black hole at its core. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Black holes gather matter in a disc (orange), part of which is push away by a wind (blue). This powers a large-scale outflow of gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Astronomers have seen how supermassive black holes consume their host galaxy’s star-forming gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Artist’s impression: red gas pours out of a galaxy with a supermassive black hole at its core. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Astronomers have seen how supermassive black holes consume their host galaxy’s star-forming gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Black holes gather matter in a disc (orange), part of which is push away by a wind (blue). This powers a large-scale outflow of gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Artist’s impression: red gas pours out of a galaxy with a supermassive black hole at its core. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Astronomers have seen how supermassive black holes consume their host galaxy’s star-forming gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    Black holes gather matter in a disc (orange), part of which is push away by a wind (blue). This powers a large-scale outflow of gas. Photo: ESA/ATG medialab

    The three little pigs were rightly outraged when the wolf blew down their houses, but that’s nothing compared to the havoc some supermassive black holes wreak on their host galaxies.

    Astronomers have now discovered how these galactic beasts, found in the heart of most galaxies, huff and puff and blow their host’s raw star-building material away.

    “This is the first time that we have seen a supermassive black hole in action, blowing away the galaxy’s reservoir of star-making gas,” said research leader, Francesco Tombesi, from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

    Astronomers first witnessed the enormous power supermassive black holes could wield on their hosts when they spied superwinds ejecting huge amounts of gas from these galaxies – the equivalent of ejecting 1000 Suns every year.

    “The only thing that has the energy to do that is a supermassive black hole,” says Swinburne University of Technology astrophysicist Alan Duffy, who was not involved in the research.

    But until now it has been difficult for astronomers to capture the exact mechanism behind this process because their view was obscured by large amounts of interstellar gas.

    But by combining observations from the European Space Agency’s Herschel space observatory with data from the Japanese/US X-ray satellite, the international group detected powerful winds close to the centre of a nearby galaxy’s supermassive black hole.

    “In this instance we had a particularly clean line of sight and the X-ray telescope has given us a direct probe right into the heart of this supermassive black hole for the first time,” said Dr Duffy. “You can see the gas being driven out,” he said.

    After witnessing the first part of this process, the group also captured the finale event – a large-scale flow of gas out of the galaxy.

    These observations, published in scientific journal Nature, provide significant support to one of two theories on the way supermassive black holes keep galaxies in check, without which galaxies would be much larger than they are.

    In the quasar mode theory astronomers postulated that the disc of material that swirls around the black hole gets so hot that it heats the star-forming gas around it, pushing it out in front like a rocket.

    “This work is absolutely nailing it as the quasar mode,” says Dr Duffy.

    The alternative theory, radio mode, suggests giant jets of plasma blast their way through a galaxy frying the star-forming gas.

    While this this method of clearing a galaxy’s of their star-forming material may still be important, Dr Duffy said it’s more likely “a secondary maintenance mode”.

    “These supermassive black hole have two cleaners, one full-time and one part-time.”  

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