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Black Widow – Sea Rescue – Army Defended – Fletcher Forests – Don Clark

BLACK WIDOW: A female black widow spider is tonight in a Canterbury lab after being found in a carton of California grapes. The bite can be fatal for the young, the elderly and the sick. The find again raises questions about New Zealand’s border security. MAF has banned all imports from the Californian warehouse the grapes came from. Green MP Sue Kedgley is calling for a ban on all grape imports. Recently the government put $4.5m into checking people coming into the country, but nothing into checking cartons like those the spider came in.

SEA RESCUE: There has been a dramatic rescue at sea off the Bay of Plenty coast. One has died but two survived. Police say an 18-year-old swam for almost five hours to raise the alarm.

ARMY DEFENDED: A former army boss has defended the army in the wake of the Auditor General’s report on the LAVIII purchase. He believes the defence ministry and the defence force have been dragging their heels because they don’t like this Government’s defence policy. But Derek Quigley said the army lobbied the Government to get its own way and got what they wanted.

FLETCHER FORESTS: One of the biggest losses in New Zealand’s corporate history was announced today, and it is being blamed on the breakup of Fletcher Challenge. Fletcher Forests announced a loss of nearly $1.4b in the year to June. But Fletcher Forests is predicting a modest annual profit of $30m profit in the coming year.

DON CLARK: Don Clark, the super boot of All Black rugby in the late 50s and 60s, is suffering from cancer. Today, some of his contemporaries threw a party to help him out. Memorabilia went under the hammer to raise money. Clark will be guest of honour at Eden Park’s All Black/Springbok test.

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