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New Zealand Herald

Kylie Jones - Taxi Driver – Super Investigation - Bob To Go - Phone Survey - Bank Inquiry? - Doctor Retraining - Doctor Retraining - Olympic Torch - Freak Hail - Waterfront Skyscraper - Lyprinol Charges - State Highway Patrol

KYLIE JONES: Detectives are wrestling with a number of mysteries in their hunt for the killer of young Auckland journalist Kylie Jones, stabbed in a brutal attack near her Glen Innes home. Her shoes and some of the clothing she was wearing have not been found, despite a painstaking search of the area where her body was discovered.

TAXI DRIVER: Police have cordoned off Moera Street in Lower Hutt street, following the violent death of a taxi driver overnight. The man was found lying in the street around eight o'clock last night, suffering from serious injuries received in an apparent beating.

SUPER INVESTIGATION: Police are investigating a Government Superannuation Fund employee who pocketed about $1 million through murky foreign exchange dealings. Financial sources claimed yesterday that the employee had used inside information from the Government fund - which invests the pension savings of MPs, judges, police, the military and other civil servants - for personal profit.

BOB TO GO: Prime Minister Helen Clark held a secret meeting with controversial Labour Party president Bob Harvey yesterday aimed at negotiating his dignified exit from the race for another term as party boss. A spokesman for Helen Clark said that there would be no comment on such an internal matter as Mr Harvey's future.

PHONE SURVEY: Auckland companies are putting more effort into answering their phones - but one that should know better took the longest to pick up the receiver in a survey this week. The Herald phoned seven companies at 10 am, 12.30 pm, 4 pm and 8 pm on Wednesday to find out how long customers had to wait on hold if they needed an answer to a question about their account, driving licence or student loan.

BANK INQUIRY?: Banks could feel the heat of a parliamentary inquiry into bank charges, as discontent simmers over costs to consumers and business. Commerce Minister Paul Swain wants the commerce select committee to conduct the inquiry.

DOCTOR RETRAINING: Health Minister Annette King has announced an $11.8 million retraining package for foreign doctors designed to get them back into the workforce. The money will be spent over the next three years on bridging programmes for overseas-trained doctors who arrived here between 1991 and 1995.

OLYMPIC TORCH: ULURU - The Olympic flame began its journey through the nation that will host this year's Games in one of its most isolated but famous areas. After crossing the Tasman from New Zealand, the flame was flown to the Yulara in Australia's outback to start its 100-day journey around the country.

FREAK HAIL: The freak hail that hit parts of Auckland on Wednesday night was caused by a "breeding ground" of thunderstorms in the Pacific Ocean. Cars were damaged and houses flooded as about 150mm of hail fell in the Albany and Torbay area before 8.30 pm.

WATERFRONT SKYSCRAPER: Like it or not, work on the AMP skyscraper on the Auckland waterfront has started. The first piles for the building have been driven on the site in lower Albert St. Demolition of the Downtown Convention Centre should be finished in about 10 days.

LYPRINOL CHARGES: Eighteen charges have been laid against two companies and some of their staff over the sale, distribution and advertising of the green-lipped mussel extract Lyprinol. News of its potential to cure cancer was released from an Australian university days before the product was launched on to the New Zealand market last July.

STATE HIGHWAY PATROL: A 225-strong state highway patrol force will be policing our roads by Christmas under a $152 million road safety programme. Plans for the patrol force - which will be in addition to existing police numbers - were unveiled in Hamilton yesterday, along with a boost for community road safety and education projects.

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