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TV3 News

Fire – Kirsty Bentley – All Blacks on TV – Ref Bottling Charges Dropped – Esale Babies - Inflation and Oil - Concorde Flies Again – Balloon Visit

FIRE: First Blenheim now Wellington. Hills north of Wellington erupt in flames in three places. One group of firefighters are left isolated. Fire at one stage 1km wide at Plimmerton. The fire engulfed 30 hectares, jumped the railway lines and closed SH1. Some crews on the scene from 11.30am. Fires have also been burning elsewhere including a long blaze at Silverstream that started in suspicious circumstances.

KIRSTY BENTLEY: New developments in the case of murder victim Kirsty Bentley who disappeared at New Year’s eve a year in Timaru. The developments follow a bump to the head of her father and an apparent change of story about where he was on the day of the murder. Police say they will reinterview him following the change in story. Police want to hear about sightings of his distinctive white Holden utility.

ALL BLACKS ON TV: The All Blacks tour to Europe next year will be screened next year live on TelstraSaturn. This is a clear statement says a company spokesman. The price was too high for Sky when bidding went over $3 million for the rights. This is a traditional strategy for cable companies says a sportsperson. Media analysts say the move is clever and probably just the first round in a battle for sports rights.

REF BOTTLING CHARGES DROPPED: Police have dropped a charge against a man accused of throwing a plastic bottle at the referee in Wellington following a rugby test. The police say witnesses are now overseas.

E-SALE BABIES: Trans Atlantic custody battle on TV. A family bought some babies on the internet for $12,000 each, which had already been sold to someone else from whom they were abducted it appears by their birth mother. The baby purchasers then went on the run across America before taking refuge with the one year olds in Britain. They plan to keep them.

INFLATION AND OIL: Consumer Price annual Inflation (CPI) for 2000 was 4% in figures out today. The cost of living surge over six months from July 2000 is the highest since 1990. Analysts expect inflation to fall quickly in coming quarters. Interest rate rises are not expected. That said crude oil price increases are again threatening to put prices up again at the petrol station with OPEC meeting tonight to discuss a 5% cut in production.

CONCORDE FLIES AGAIN: Air France says they can make the Concorde safe by developing a new liner to fuel tanks that will protect them. British Airways also plans to seal its tanks with Kevlar.

BALLOON VISIT: An unexpected visitor in Christchurch suburbia. A hot air balloon arrives with 20 tourists in a suburban St at 7am. Kiwi hospitality extends to packing the huge balloon away.

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