Daily News Roundup

February 5, 2021


A Brisbane man has been charged with forcing girls as young as 17 into sexual slavery and branding them with tattoos claiming them as his property. 

Police allege the 35-year-old man kept the women aged 17 to 24 in conditions of servitude of unlawful prostitution, and drugged them, controlled their life and money and had them tattooed as being his property.

He has been charged with ten offences after police raided two residential addresses in Mount Gravatt East, in the city’s south, and South Brisbane.

Police allegedly found four women at the property in the Mount Gravatt East during the search, alongside drugs, and other evidence they said supports sexual servitude and organised prostitution offences.

Police also say they found covert recordings made of male clients and the victims engaged in sexual acts.

Detective Inspector Juliet Hancock, Officer-in-Charge of the Prostitution Enforcement Taskforce said investigations started in October 2020 following calls from the public.

“The information received was that the women were being exploited by the male by being given stupefying drugs and forced into prostitution,” she said.

“We believe there are other victims who have been exploited by the man and I encourage them to come forward and contact police.

“Police are working with community service providers to offer the victims any care and support they may seek.”

The man has been charged with 10 offences related to the alleged crimes.

A woman has also been charged with three offences.


Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the National Cabinet has agreed to lift the cap on international passenger arrivals from mid-February to their previous levels in New South Wales and Queensland.

The number of people allowed to fly into NSW, Queensland and Western Australia were halved at the beginning of January in response to the new strain of the virus from the United Kingdom.

“It was also agreed that from February 15, the caps will return to the previous levels for New South Wales and Queensland,” he said.

Western Australia will remain at reduced capacity and Mr Morrison did not say when it would increase.

NSW will return to a weekly cap of 3,010 people and Queensland 1,000 people.

South Australia has increased its cap by 40 people a week to 530 and Victoria by nearly 200 to 1,310, taking the weekly cap to 6,362.

The Government’s repatriation flights to the Howard Springs facility in the Northern Territory, Canberra and Hobart do not count under the caps.

“We are looking to expand the capacity further of Howard Springs,” Mr Morrison said.

“Already expanding it to 850, and potentially well beyond that, which would involve a more than doubling of that capacity at Howard Springs.” 

He said getting Australians home continued to be the priority for the National Cabinet.

The Prime Minister also spoke about the suggestion of developing another quarantine facility in Toowoomba in Queensland, saying the Government would continue to assess the proposal.

“We are still seeking a lot more information on that proposal, and the secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet has pulled together the various agencies that are needed to assess that proposal,” he said.

“There is a lot more information we’re going to need before we can get to an assessment of how we go forward on that.”

He said the costs, size of the workforce required and the impact it would have on local health facilities were all being considered.


Donald Trump has resigned from the Screen Actors Guild after the union threatened to expel him for his role in last month’s Capitol riot.

In a letter addressed to The Screen Actors Guild — American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) president Gabrielle Carteris, Mr Trump said he was resigning from the union of which he had been a member since 1989.

“I no longer wish to be associated with your union,” wrote Mr Trump in a letter shared by the actors guild. 

The guild responded with a short statement: “Thank you.”

Last month, the SAG-AFTRA board voted that there was probable cause that Mr Trump violated its guidelines for membership with his role in the January 6 Capitol siege. 

Mr Trump, the guild said, had sustained “a reckless campaign of misinformation aimed at discrediting and ultimately threatening the safety of journalists, many of whom are SAG-AFTRA members”.

Mr Trump’s case was to be weighed by a disciplinary committee. 

Shortly after President Donald Trump ended his speech to the “Save America” rally, where he called for the crowd to march on Congress, riled up protesters stormed the Capitol Building.

In his resignation letter, the former president said he had no interest in such a hearing, and that he was not familiar with Ms Carteris’s acting work. 

“Who cares?” he wrote.

“While I’m not familiar with your work, I’m very proud of my work on movies such as Home Alone 2, Zoolander and Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps; and television shows including The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Saturday Night Live, and of course, one of the most successful shows in television history, The Apprentice — to name just a few!” wrote Trump.

“I’ve also greatly helped the cable news television business (said to be a dying platform with not much time left until I got involved in politics), and created thousands of jobs at networks such as MSDNC and Fake News CNN, among many others,” Mr Trump continued.


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