Daily News Roundup

April 22, 2021

THURSDAY, April 22


The Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has spoken this afternoon in Parliament with regards to the death of Gold Coast woman Kelly Wilkinson. the Premier said Ms Wilkinson’s death was a tragedy and that she wanted justice to be served.

“I think everyone has been touched by the recent tragedy, it is absolutely horrific, and I really feel for her young children and the family,” the Premier told State Parliament.

“That should never have to happen to anybody at all and I do hope that justice is served.

“As the person has been charged I cannot any comment further on that case, but I think everyone in this house shares our deep sadness and our feelings towards the family.”

Ms Palaszczuk said the Queensland government had established the Women’s Safety and Justice Taskforce, led by Margaret McMurdo, to consult on potential coercive control legislation.

“[Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman] has spoken to all the stakeholder groups and this is exactly what the stakeholder groups wanted,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“The best thing we can do is let them get on with their work.

“But in terms of our job in relation to prevention of domestic and family violence our job never ends, and we had the landmark report by Quentin Bryce and we’ve implemented all those recommendations.

“There’s been huge investment of money, bipartisan support of Parliament – it is a very, very important issue in our society.

“Respect needs to start at home, respect needs to be in our schools, it needs to be in the way we treat one another.”


TikTok, the wildly popular video app, and its Chinese parent ByteDance could face a damages claim worth “billions of pounds” in London’s High Court over allegations they illegally harvested the private data of millions of European children, reports Reuters.

Anne Longfield, the former Children’s Commissioner for England and so-called “litigation friend”, or public face, of an anonymous 12-year-old girl leading the class action, said on Wednesday that affected children could receive thousands of pounds each if the claim was successful.

Ms Longfield alleged that every child who had used TikTok since May 25, 2018, may have had private personal information illegally collected by ByteDance through TikTok for the benefit of unknown third parties.

“Parents and children have a right to know that private information, including phone numbers, physical location, and videos of their children are being illegally collected,” she said.

A TikTok representative said privacy and safety were the company’s top priorities, and that it had robust policies, processes and technologies in place to help protect all users, especially teenage users.

“We believe the claims lack merit and intend to vigorously defend the action,” the representative said.

TikTok is one of the world’s most popular apps, and has around 100 million users in Europe alone.

The COVID-19 pandemic, which shut many children up at home, helped cement its success.

But the claimants, advised by law firm Scott & Scott, were alleging TikTok violated UK and European Union data protection laws by processing young people’s data without adequate security measures, transparency, the consent of guardians or legitimate interest.

The claim demands that the company delete all children’s personal information — and states that damages could run into “billions of pounds” if successful.

Such US-style “opt-out” data privacy class actions, which bind a defined group automatically into a lawsuit unless individuals opt out, are rare in Britain.

The case has been put on hold while it awaits a UK Supreme Court ruling in a bellwether case against Internet giant Google over alleged unlawful tracking of iPhone users in 2011 and 2012 through third-party cookies.

That case will be heard next week.


Washing is being torn from clothes lines as packs of dingoes circle camp sites — the latest proof the wild dogs are growing more accustomed to humans on Fraser Island (K’Gari), reports the ABC.

Breeding season for dingoes is between March and May on the World Heritage-listed sand island, meaning the animals are at their most aggressive as they move about looking for mates.

Nine people have now been attacked on the island in the past three years — the latest victim, a two-year-old boy, last weekend.

He was rescued by a group of tourists at the neighbouring house after being bitten on the head, neck and legs at Orchid Beach.

He was flown to the Bundaberg Hospital but has since been discharged.

‘It’s pretty unusual’

The Richards family had washing ripped from their line while camping north of Orchid Beach over the Easter school holidays.

Father-of-three Tim Richards said dingoes ventured closer than usual this year, expecting to be fed.

“First day we were here and had all our washing out — a bikini, dress and boardshorts went missing and then were ripped up the following morning when we woke up. It’s pretty unusual,” Mr Richards said.

“The next night we had a pack of dingoes roaming around the marquee with the lights off just circling, and circling.

“There were about three to six I think.

“Normally we just have a lone dingo roaming around but they’ve been pretty confident this time.”

‘Don’t feed dingoes’

An increase in close encounters with residents and visitors and the continued feeding of the wild animals has prompted Queensland Parks and Wildlife rangers to close six campgrounds until at least June.

Ranger-in-charge Linda Behrendorff said feeding the animals has led to high-risk situations where people have been bitten, sometimes through no fault of their own.

“It’s quite selfish — they want to get these up-close photos, draw them in by offering food or drawing them closer to their car or even in some instances trying to attract the dingo to pat it,” Ms Behrendorff said.

“I don’t believe they understand the implications of their actions.

“You’re not only putting the dingo at risk, you put yourself at risk and others when you behave in that manner.”

Ms Behrendorff said last year’s bushfires caused some people to believe dingoes needed supplementary food, but that wasn’t required and has caused other issues.

“The average weight of a dingo would be 15 to 16.5 kilograms, these particular animals that aren’t even 12 months old yet are weighing in at around 18 kilograms … that makes them dangerous in these situations,” she said.

The warning from QPWS is stay close to your chidlren, camp in a fenced area and don’t feed the dingoes.(ABC News: Nicole Hegarty)

“Dingoes have so much food here that it’s one of the least of their concerns.

“The dingo-safe messaging includes staying close to your kids, camp in a fenced area if you’ve got kids — don’t feed dingoes.”

Two decades since fatal attack … what’s changed?

This month marks the 20th anniversary of Clinton Gage’s death on the island.

The nine-year-old was attacked and killed by two dingoes while walking near a sand blow at Waddy Point in 2001.

Fencing has been increased around camping areas in the two decades since Clinton’s death, but the recent spike in aggressive behaviour has caused renewed debate about balancing the safety of both humans and dingoes.

Mr Richards said his family’s latest experience had taken them by surprise.

“The kids were a little bit scared when they were sleeping,” he said.

“If everyone just left them alone I think they’d leave us alone.

“We sort of just try and ignore them but you see a lot of people getting up close and interacting, which is annoying.”

The Department of Environment and Science said there were on-the-spot fines of $2,088 with a maximum penalty of $10,444 for feeding or disturbing dingoes.


Australia is helping the Indonesian navy search for a submarine that has gone missing off the coast of Bali with 53 people on board.

The country’s military said it was searching the “deep” waters after losing contact with the vessel on Wednesday.

“The KRI Nanggala 402 lost contact early this morning,” said First Admiral Julius Widjojono.

“(The navy) is currently searching for it. We know the area but it’s quite deep.”

The German-made submarine had been conducting a torpedo drill in waters off the northern coast of Bali but failed to relay results as expected, a navy spokesman said.

Indonesia’s Defence Ministry said in a statement that Australia, Singapore and India had responded to requests for assistance.

It said that an aerial search had found an oil spill near the submarine’s dive location and two navy vessels with sonar capability have been deployed to assist in the search.

The oil spill could mean there was damage to the vessel’s fuel tank or could be a signal from the crew, the Indonesian navy said in a statement. The submarine was built to sustain pressure at a maximum depth of around 250 metres, according to an official.

“It is possible that during static diving, a blackout occurred so control was lost and emergency procedures cannot be carried out and the ship falls to a depth of 600-700 metres,” the navy said.

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