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TV 1 News - First Segment

Alleged Racism - Tougher Sentences - Ferry Fury - Ecstasy Death - Aids in Houses

Alleged Racism - MP's John Tamahere and Richard Prebble are at loggerheads in Parliament over allegations that the taxpayer-funded Waiparera Trust, of which Tamahere was CEO, has misused money. It is alleged that $200,000 went to the Aotearoa Maori League football club. This was later described as a mistake. WINZ gives the trust more than half a million and is now making inquiries that the money has been properly used. Mr Prebble refused to be interviewed. He wants to use the safety of Pariamentary privilege so he won't be sued. Tamahere says he is sick of the racism and malice. Mr Tamahere welcomes an audit of the Trust funds.

Tougher sentences - Justice Minister Phil Goff has put judges on notice over sentencing. A new Bill will spell out guidelines clearly for judges. Norm Withers, who organised a huge petition last year, says politicians should heed the will of the people. Jim Anderton says relying on longer sentences to lower crime does not work.

Ferry Fury - The father of a young man who died in a ferry accident has condemned the safety procedures of Tranzrail. Nigel Cooper died when a lifeboat fell 17 metres to the water following the failure of a badle maintained hook and safety backup chain. Eight years earlier the same liefeboat hook and chain had also failed with the lifeboat falling. Tranzrail says not to replace the hook was a mistake and not cost-cutting. Tranzrail were fined $50,000.

Ecstasy Death - Whangarei man Jamie Langridge who died three weeks ago at a dance party on Pakatoa Island had taken ecstasy. The police confirmed that he had taken the drug but a judge has not yet confirmed this as the cause of death. It is a widely available designer drug with no controls on who makes it.

Aids in Houses - Land agents are concerned that a case taken against them for a house sale where the previous occupant had died of aids which was not disclosed to the new buyer may have disasterous effects on the real estate industry. A claim of $75,000 in compensation has been made in the High Court alleging that house buyers should be told as it may lower the value of the property. The real estate industry says the privacy act prevents such disclosures. The sellers lawyer says he wants the Courts to strike out the application for compensation.


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