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Ashburton police believe it is too soon to judge how much of a breakthrough they have made in their hunt for the killer of Kirsty Bentley. They have today revealed that a green Commer van seen travelling slowly behind a girl walking a black dog in the town on New Year’s Eve, was later seen near where Kirsty Bentley’s body was found. It’s the first time police have been able to link vehicles seen in the area where the teenager disappeared and where she was found. Police describe the sighting as quite significant.

An Auckland research company is considering legal action over the mussel extract claims of being a cure for cancer issue. The company has been making the green-lipped mussel extract since 1978, now another extract marketed by another company, has been withdrawn from sale following concerns its alleged cancer killing properties haven’t been tested. McFarlane Research’s director is furious saying his product isn’t touted as a cancer cure but has been dragged through the mud by the fallout over the claims of the new-comer company.

A recommendation that all hot air balloons flying near water should carry lifejackets. The Christchurch coroner wants all commercial balloon flight operators compelled to use links with meteorological information via the internet to keep abreast of changing weather patterns. The recommendations are included in the coroner’s final findings into the deaths of two Asian tourists and a Japanese tour guide.

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