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New Zealand Herald

Woman Attacked – Confidence Slump - Team NZ - Courts Manager - Driving Testers - Man An Aucklander - Pay-TV Postponed - False Accuser - Endoscope Standards - Hell Viruses

WOMAN ATTACKED: A pair of burly 1.83m thugs bit off more than they could chew when they attacked Rachael Younger on a dark Auckland street. Ms Younger may be only 70kg, but she is a self-defence teacher with a fourth degree black belt in tae kwon do and, as the thugs quickly found out, she practises what she teaches.

CONFIDENCE SLUMP: Business confidence has suffered its biggest plunge ever. The crisis has prompted the Prime Minister to take charge of possible changes to the draft workplace legislation widely blamed for the slump.

TEAM NZ: Team New Zealand suffered another blow yesterday when key hull designer Laurie Davidson quit to draw the boats of a new American syndicate. But at the same time, an American designer signed to join the Kiwis.

COURTS MANAGER: A former senior Courts Department manager is being investigated for allegedly favouring family and friends when hiring staff. The department is about to begin a major internal inquiry into the hiring practices of former Auckland District Court collections unit manager Losa Purcell-Milford.

DRIVING TESTERS: Driving licence testers are facing a new kind of road rage - from failed motorists. Testers fear that angry drivers they fail believe they are soft targets for retribution now that the privatised service is no longer seen to be under the umbrella of the police.

MAN AN AUCKLANDER: A man who forgot who he was and walked into the Christchurch City Mission six weeks ago seeking help has discovered that he is an Aucklander. But it remains a mystery how the man, who may be amnesiac, got to Christchurch in the first place.

PAY-TV POSTPONED: TVNZ has accused the Government of playing into the hands of media moguls such as Rupert Murdoch by postponing its plans to launch its own pay-TV service. Official papers released by the Government yesterday show the state-owned broadcaster fought a bitter battle to be allowed to launch a rival pay-TV service to Sky TV, but was unable to convince its political masters that its ambitious plans would benefit taxpayers. TVNZ's board claimed

FALSE ACCUSER: A Papakura District councillor has been ordered to pay three council officials $55,000 plus court costs for falsely accusing them of bribery and corruption. Ross Vickery made the allegations against chief executive Tom McLean, finance director Geoff Phillips and former works director Chris Smale in flyers and press releases he distributed before he was elected a councillor.

ENDOSCOPE STANDARDS: WELLINGTON - National standards for sterilising endoscopes are to be established following health scares with the equipment in Rotorua and Christchurch in the past year, the Ministry of Health said yesterday. Contaminated equipment used for colonoscopy examinations at Lakeland Health between mid-February and late March this year had exposed 34 patients to the risk of HIV, hepatitis B and C.

HELL VIRUSES: Microsoft says there are no problems with its e-mail software, even as computer experts have come out in support of an Auckland software designer who says its e-mail programs are dangerously flawed. Phil Saleh, creative director of Arabesque Multimedia, says he has discovered a security flaw in Microsoft's Outlook Express program that could allow hackers to create devastating new "hell viruses."

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