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Charlise Mutten's cause of death revealed

<p><em>Image: 9News </em></p> <p>Detectives have revealed nine-year-old Charlise Mutten died from a gunshot wound. The Homicide Squad boss has called this and "unimaginable and egregious murder".</p> <p>The young girl was found dead in a plastic barrel on the banks of the Colo River in NSW last week. She was found an hour from where she was last seen in the Blue Mountains.</p> <p>Her mother's partner Justin Stein, 31, has been charged with her murder.</p> <p>"The cause of death of Charlise was that she suffered a fatal gunshot wound, and that's how she died," Homicide Squad Commander Danny Doherty said today.</p> <p>"We're disclosing this for investigative reasons but also just to clear up any ambiguity… this is the (alleged) murder of a nine-year-old girl."</p> <p>The family of the girl has only recently been told how she died.</p> <p>"It's important that they know, and it's important that the public know that this is an unimaginable and egregious (alleged) murder of a child," he said.</p> <p>Police are still searching the Mount Wilson property where Charlise was last seen and the surrounding areas for a gun. Detective Superintendent Doherty said the barrel Charlise was found in is believed to be from the property and police believe there is a "high probability" she died there.</p> <p>Charlise's mother Kallista Mutten has been reinterviewed and is being treated as a witness. Detective Superintendent Doherty said Ms Mutten was not believed to have been at the property at the time police allege Charlise was murdered.</p> <p>It comes as new CCTV was released, showing a ute towing a boat at multiple locations across Sydney.</p> <p>The CCTV footage shows the maroon coloured ute towing a covered boat at three locations on the evening of January 13. Just before 6pm, the ute pulls into a BP gas station at Marsden Park, in Sydney's north-west.</p> <p>At 7:17 pm the ute and boat are spotted in traffic in Drummoyne, in Sydney's inner west.</p> <p>Minutes later, close to the Five Dock Bay Boat Ramp near Drummoyne, the ute is captured on a home's private security system.</p> <p>Police believe the little girl was killed on January 11th or 12th. Charlise was visiting her mother for the school holidays from Queensland, where she lives, at the time of her death.</p>

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New messages between Charlise Mutten’s mum and Justin Stein emerge

<p dir="ltr">Messages sent by the mother of Charlise Mutten about her fiancé have emerged as investigations continue into the young girl’s death.</p> <p dir="ltr">Kallista Mutten messaged a friend through Facebook, telling them how she had fallen in love with Justin Stein and that he treated her “so good”.</p> <p dir="ltr">“He’s amazing and treats me so good,” she told her friend, according to<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/before-her-daughter-was-allegedly-murdered-kallista-mutten-was-getting-life-on-track-20220121-p59q85.html" target="_blank"><em>The Sydney Morning Herald</em></a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">“He’s completely loyal and I have no worries, I know his heart is with me.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The couple met while Ms Mutten was serving a three-year sentence in prison for causing a car crash that killed her passenger in 2017. She was high on ice at the time of the crash.</p> <p dir="ltr">After exchanging letters for the final two years of her sentence, the pair were engaged shortly after her release. They had plans to move to North Queensland and start their lives together, with Ms Mutten recently getting her driver’s licence after a long suspension.</p> <p dir="ltr">Ms Mutten also shared her excitement over her daughter coming to visit her at her fiancé’s family property in the NSW Blue Mountains for Christmas.</p> <p dir="ltr">“My daughter comes on the 21st, so I’m looking forward to that,” she wrote on December 5, as reported by the<span> </span><em>Herald</em>.</p> <p dir="ltr">One month later, Charlise’s remains were found inside a barrel in bushland by the Colo River, with police alleging that Mr Stein has murdered her at his family’s property.</p> <p dir="ltr">Mr Stein has been remanded in Silverwater Prison, while Ms Mutten remains in hospital. Police are yet to have a chance to speak to her but are keen to do so to aid their investigation.</p> <p dir="ltr">The<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10433165/Charlise-Muttens-mother-sent-friends-Facebook-messages-doting-fiance-alleged-murder.html" target="_blank"><em>Daily Mail</em></a><span> </span>reported that Ms Mutten stayed at Sydney Clinic last November - which has treated Andrew O’Keefe, AFL player Ben Cousins, and reality TV star Suzi Taylor - and was housed in the clinic’s substance abuse unit.</p> <p dir="ltr">A fellow patient told the publication that Ms Mutten was visited by Mr Stein during her stay at the clinic, describing her as “over the top” and “very attention seeking”.</p> <p dir="ltr">The patient said Ms Mutten spoke about her upcoming wedding to Mr Stein in 2022 and claimed that she and Mr Stein “had sex in the back of the ute” after one of his visits.</p> <p dir="ltr">Though Sydney Clinic holds three-step group therapy sessions for patients, Ms Mutten’s fellow patients said she seemed uninterested in participating, according to the<span> </span><em>Daily Mail</em>.</p> <p dir="ltr">Ms Mutten was convicted in November 2017 of dangerous driving occasioning death and driving with an illicit substance in her system, serving over two years in prison for the incident that killed her 53-year-old friend and passenger Karen ‘Kaz’ Bunch.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: The Daily Mail</em></p>

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Terence Kelly confesses to abducting Cleo Smith

<p><em>Image: Getty </em></p> <p>Cleo Smith’s abductor Terence Kelly has confessed to kidnapping the four-year-old from her family tent and keeping her captive for 18 days.</p> <p>Kelly, 36, was arrested after detectives raided his Carnarvon house at 12.46 am on November 3rd and found the little girl alone inside a bedroom playing with toys.</p> <p>The next day Terence was charged with child abduction and flown to Perth where he remains in custody at Casuarina Prison. During an appearance in Carnarvon Magistrate’s Court on Monday, Kelly pleaded guilty to child abduction via video link.</p> <p>Kelly appeared solemn and spent much of the hearing looking down. He spoke only one word, ‘guilty’, when asked by Magistrate Ben White what his plea to the kidnapping charge was.</p> <p>He admitted taking Cleo from her family’s tent on October the 16th at Quobba Blowholes campsite as her parents slept metres away.</p> <p>Following one of the largest missing persons investigations in Australian history, Cleo was rescued 18 days later after four detectives stormed Kelly’s home in a midnight raid.</p> <p>In the days after Cleo’s rescue, WA Police acting Commissioner Col Blanch said mobile phone data and CCTV footage of a car entering Carnarvon the night Cleo vanished led police to raid Kelly’s house.</p> <p>The details of why Kelly took Cleo, or how police solved the case, are yet to be revealed in court.</p> <p>Cleo’s family have declined to speak to media since her safe return, only issuing a statement thanking the community for its support and requesting privacy.</p> <p>The Nine Network, which publishes this masthead, will pay almost $2 million for an interview with the family in what is believed to be one of the largest deals in Australian television history.</p> <p>Outside court, before Kelly’s admission, a former neighbour of Kelly’s, Esther Mingo, told media she hoped Kelly would “open his mouth up” and tell the truth.</p> <p>She also voiced repeated frustration that none of his family members were attending his court hearings.</p> <p>“He’s got stacks of family ... where are his mother and father, why don’t they come here?” she said.</p> <p>After the hearing, Ms Mingo and two other women refused to speak to the media. His lawyer, Kate Turtley-Chappel, also declined to comment.</p> <p>Kelly will appear in Perth District Court on March 25th for a date to be set for his sentencing.</p>

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Peng Shuai T-shirt scandal puts Tennis Australia in hot water

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Australian Open organisers are at the centre of even more criticism over their handling of spectators with items asking “where is Peng Shuai?”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Tennis Australia (TA) has </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.news.com.au/sport/tennis/australian-open/tennis-australia-destroyed-over-peng-shuai-tshirt-scandal/news-story/cb7c1678360dd16a87bbf8e996924083" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">stood by</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> its decision after footage emerged of security and police requesting a fan remove her shirt calling for the Chinese tennis player’s fate to be addressed.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ms Shuai gained worldwide attention after she “disappeared” following a post she shared on social media containing allegations of sexual abuse against a former high-ranking member of the Chinese Communist Party. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Though she has since been seen <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.co.nz/news/news/missing-tennis-star-makes-public-appearance" target="_blank">in videos and photos</a> shared by Chinese state media, many have expressed concerns that those were staged and activists have questioned whether she is able to act freely.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The video of the scene at Melbourne Park ended with police saying TA was permitted to confiscate any material referencing Ms Shuai.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A TA spokesperson told News Corp Australia that the organisation feared for Ms Shuai’s safety, but that fans were not allowed to make political statements with clothing at the Australian Open.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Under our ticket conditions of entry we don’t allow clothing, banners or signs that are commercial or political,” the spokesperson said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Peng Shuai’s safety is our primary concern. We continue to work with the WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) and global tennis community to seek more clarity on her situation and will do everything we can to ensure her wellbeing.”</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Interestingly, journalists can ask questions about the Peng Shuai situation to players, but fans, seemingly, aren't allowed to.... <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AusOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AusOpen</a> <a href="https://t.co/SCqNlH2bOx">pic.twitter.com/SCqNlH2bOx</a></p> — Matt Walsh (@MattWalshMedia) <a href="https://twitter.com/MattWalshMedia/status/1485052235251957760?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 23, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Drew Pavlou shared footage online of his friend Max Mok and another person being asked by security about their clothes - including shirts which said “Where is Peng Shuai?” - and later by police.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mr Mok slammed the TA’s reaction, telling </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.theage.com.au/sport/tennis/tennis-australia-confiscate-where-is-peng-shuai-shirts-banners-at-open-20220123-p59qi2.html" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Nine newspapers</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> it was a hypocritical decision.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I can remember him  (the security guard) saying over and over that he had been instructed by someone higher up to confiscate (the Peng items),” Mr Mok said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“On top of that, he also kept saying - and I don’t think this was in the video - but he kept saying he had eyes and ears everywhere, you can’t hide, things like that. Who exactly am I hiding from?</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“He said someone found it political and reported it, but couldn’t say who.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I would be surprised if someone at the ground reported us.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mr Pavlou also spruiked a GoFundMe page to print more “Where is Peng Shuai?” shirts, revealing on Twitter that it had amassed nearly $6,000 in donations.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Wow, in less than 24 hours we have raised almost $6000 to print a thousand “Where Is Peng Shuai” shirts to hand out for free at the Australian Open women’s final. <a href="https://twitter.com/TennisAustralia?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TennisAustralia</a> good luck keeping your $25 million corporate sponsorship from China <a href="https://t.co/BN9oi6mPdl">https://t.co/BN9oi6mPdl</a> <a href="https://t.co/iNiVxDrwP8">pic.twitter.com/iNiVxDrwP8</a></p> — Drew Pavlou For Senate (@DrewPavlou) <a href="https://twitter.com/DrewPavlou/status/1484846760669638660?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 22, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mr Mok said the TA’s treatment of him was hypocritical considering its claims that Ms Shuai’s safety was its “primary concern”, and hoped that more people would follow their lead and show their support for the tennis star.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Hypocrisy is an understatement. It’s not sincere, and it’s just a way for them (TA) to avoid a PR disaster,” he told Nine.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“You can see that from the huge amount of support that we’ve got from the public. If we had less support, this could have gone very wrong.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“If Tennis Australia is serious about the movement, they’ll let people in (with Peng-related items). Time will tell which side they’re on.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Regardless, it’ll be a good message to send not just to Australia, but internationally. Imagine a whole court filled with ‘Free Peng Shuai’ shirts?”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Many have shared their criticisms of the organisation online, while some have pointed out the double standard between spectators and journalists with questions about the missing player.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Interestingly, journalists can ask questions about the Peng Shuai situation to players, but fans, seemingly, aren’t allowed to,” journalist Matt Walsh wrote.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">I get if a hotel says 'No thongs', asks you to leave and then calls the police if you don't because the police can see that you're wearing thongs. I don't think the police can look at a 'Where is Peng Shuai?' t-shirt and just as easily tell that it's a political statement. <a href="https://t.co/hTmkcF7EXB">pic.twitter.com/hTmkcF7EXB</a></p> — Shaun Micallef (@shaunmicallef) <a href="https://twitter.com/shaunmicallef/status/1485115549718048771?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 23, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Comedian Shaun Micallef also weighed in, questioning why asking about Ms Shuai’s whereabouts was a political statement in the eyes of TA.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Only in mainland China would asking after somebody’s whereabouts be regarded as a political statement,” he wrote.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I get if a hotel says ‘’No thongs’, asks you to leave and then calls the police if you don’t because the police can see that you’re wearing thongs. I don’t think the police can look at a ‘Where is Peng Shuai?’ T-shirt and just as easily tell that it’s a political statement.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Multiple players have been asked about Ms Shuai during the first week of the competition, with Aussie star Ash Barty saying she hoped she was doing OK.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Hopefully it’s not too long until we see her back out here,” Barty said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">When asked whether she was concerned that something “sinister” was at play, Barty said she didn’t have the knowledge to answer.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, who is a member of the WTA Player Council, also spoke about Ms Shuai, saying the association’s main goal was to hear from her personally, while Japan’s Naomi Osaka said she hadn’t heard any news either.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I’m not sure if that’s concerning or not,” she said. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I feel like it’s a situation where we need more information, which is definitely really hard. Kind of, I think everyone’s waiting.”</span></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Image: @CaraMia200 (Twitter)</span></em></p>

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Man drowns trying to save his daughter

<p dir="ltr">A family trip to the beach has come to a tragic end after an Adelaide father died trying to save his young daughter.</p> <p dir="ltr">The 49-year-old took to the water at Adelaide’s Grange Beach after the tide began taking his daughter - who was on an inflatable tube - further out to sea.</p> <p dir="ltr">Onlooker Michael Napper saw the situation unfold before racing out to help.</p> <p dir="ltr">“The little daughter jumped off the tube into his arms in deep water and he was trying to save her,” Mr Napper<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://7news.com.au/news/disaster-and-emergency/tragedy-as-dad-dies-trying-to-save-daughter-at-adelaide-beach-c-5384036" target="_blank">told<span> </span><em>7News</em></a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7846961/drowning1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/769934c9d4ca4d8ba98eaba28675948c" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Michael Napper (left) took action after seeing the younger man struggle to rescue his daughter. Image: 7News</em></p> <p dir="ltr">“It was too deep. He was holding her out of the water and the water was above his head and when I looked around he was floating.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The 70-year-old went out on the water with his boogie board to rescue the pair.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I had to. She was crying and she was very upset,” he said.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I got her on the board and she was holding the board. She was alright.</p> <p dir="ltr">“By the time I got to (her dad) he was under water and the next thing he was floating.</p> <p dir="ltr">“So I grabbed him by the trousers and turned him over and got him above the water and then I swam in.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Two onlookers began performing CPR on the unconscious man until paramedics arrived.</p> <p dir="ltr">He was treated for over an hour but paramedics were unable to revive him.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 296.1538461538462px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7846962/drowning2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/96af257f314e4b9093b9bd273ac19671" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Though other onlookers and paramedics worked to save the man, he could not be revived. Image: 7News</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The man’s passing comes as the second death by drowning this week, after a 71-year-old man died over the weekend after diving into treacherous waters to save two relatives near Victor Harbor, 80km south of Adelaide.</p> <p dir="ltr">Surf Lifesavers are urging people to take extra care around the water.</p> <p dir="ltr">“So far in six weeks we have seen four coastal drownings in South Australia,” Surf Life Saving SA spokesperson Daniel Willetts said.</p> <p dir="ltr">“We urge people to please assist yourselves and help yourself before you go to the aid of others, otherwise you may find that you indeed yourself become the fatality.”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: 7News</em></p>

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"Low IQ": Medvedev beats Kyrgios then takes a swipe at unruly crowd

<p><em>Image: Getty</em></p> <p>Russian world number two Daniil Medvedev had a go at tennis fans after his four-set defeat of Australian star Nick Kyrgios.</p> <p>Medvedev prevailed 7-6 (7/1), 6-4, 4-6, 6-2 in front of a capacity crowd on Rod Laver Arena.</p> <p>Medvedev did his best to block out the crowd's loud antics during the match, even when they were whipped into a frenzy by Kyrgios. However, Medvedev's poise broke post-match in interviews, taking issue with some people in the crowd for booing or cheering between serves when two-times Australian Open champion turned tennis presenter Jim Courier asked him how he kept his emotions in check.</p> <p>"Sorry, I can't hear you," Medvedev said. "Show some respect for Jim Courier, he won here. Let him speak, please, if you respect somebody, at least respect Jim Courier."</p> <p>Medvedev then further admonished the Melbourne Park crowd in an interview with Eurosport.</p> <p>"Break point, second serve and people are cheering like you already made a double fault. That's just disappointing," he said.</p> <p>"It's not everybody who is doing it but those who are doing it probably have a low IQ.</p> <p>"It's not good for the game I think to do it, because probably people don't know, but when you're getting ready for the second serve, it's a tough moment."<br />Despite admitting the need for the crowd to observe etiquette at times, Kyrgios said he thought rowdy crowds were good for the evolution of the sport.</p> <p>"I thought the atmosphere was awesome," Kyrgios said.</p> <p>"You've got, like, you know, the most entertaining player playing in his home slam on Rod Laver, you'd expect the crowd to be like that.<br />Karl Stefanovic appeared to take issue with the Russian tennis star's comments, as he blasted Medvedev on the<span> </span><em>Today Show</em><span> </span>on Friday morning.</p> <p>“Daniil Medvedev, my accountant has a better personality,” Karl said.</p> <p>“Daniil Medvedev, he makes Ivan Lendl look like Beyonce. Daniil Medvedev,<span> </span><em>Terminator 4</em><span> </span>had more facial expressions.”</p> <p>He added: “Insulting the fans like that – they weren’t actually booing him. He misunderstood what was happening.”</p>

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"Rot in hell": Charlise Mutten's alleged killer attacked online

<p>A Facebook post from 2020 announcing the engagement of Charlise Mutten's alleged killer, Justin Stein, and her mother, <span>Kallista Mutten, has been inundated with death threats and violent messages. </span><span></span></p> <p><span>After a five-day </span>search for nine-year-old Charlise, NSW Police confirmed the worst when her body was found in a barrel in bushland near the Blue Mountains where she went missing.</p> <p>Shortly after her body was found, Justin Stein was arrested for murder, but major questions still linger about the case.</p> <p>Police have been unable to interview Charlise's mother Kallista, who remains under medical supervision and remains "difficult to approach", according to police.</p> <p>As news of Justin Stein's arrest broke, a Facebook post from December 2020 sharing news of Justin and Kallista's engagement has been flooded with hateful messages, with many telling the 31-year-old man to "rot in hell".</p> <p>The post has attracted over 2,000 comments with people sending death threats and photos of nooses, all while seeking vengeance for the slain nine-year-old girl.</p> <p>One person wrote, <span>“I hope you only know pure hell for the rest of your days!”, while another said, “Monster! Hope you rot in jail.”</span></p> <p><span>Others shared their sadness and </span>disbelief over Charlise's death, with one person saying, <span>“What a broken world! That poor precious girl deserved so much better in this world! Rest easy little one, no one will ever hurt you again.”</span></p> <p>A milestone post announcing the couple's new relationship, which began just one month before their engagement, has attracted a slew of similar comments.</p> <p>Charlise usually lives with her grandmother in the Queensland town of Coolangatta, but was spending time with her mother and step-father over the school holidays.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Facebook</em></p>

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Parents of accused killer break their silence

<p><em>Image: 9News</em></p> <p>Justin Stein, who grew up among Sydney’s affluent elite, had a “tortured” life, his mum says, as her son remains behind bars, charged with murdering his stepdaughter.</p> <p>Annemie Stein said she had not approved of her son’s turbulent relationship with Charlise’s mother, ex-ice addict Kallista Mutten. They had been together for just over a year.</p> <p>“You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make them drink, or choose their partners, and sometimes it ends up in a headache like this one,” Ms Stein, 56, said from her home in Sydney’s inner-west.</p> <p>“Justin’s had a pretty tortured life.”</p> <p>“It would hurt anyone (to have a child go through this), it doesn’t matter who you are it would hurt you because parents know their children and, you know, as I said, the mother is the one they need to talk to.”</p> <p>Kallista Mutten remains under medical supervision in hospital.</p> <p>Kallista's mother said that Charlise was soon to be her step-granddaughter before she was allegedly murdered and her body stuffed in a barrel. She says was: “A lovely little girl and beautiful little girl and definitely didn’t deserve this.”</p> <p>Meanwhile, in rural NSW, Justin Stein’s father James Stein revealed he had not seen his son for some time.</p> <p>James Stein Snr, who split with Annemie Stein more than a decade ago, now runs an antique shop at Mount Victoria in the Blue Mountains with his partner. It appears the family has been torn in two for a number of years.<br />His oldest son, James Jnr, and his partner Keegan Buzza, are also understood not to have seen Justin since about 2016.</p> <p>Together the Steins still own the luxurious Wildenstein wedding venue where Charlise was staying for a holiday when she went missing.</p> <p>Having had little to do with his son in recent times, James Stein Snr said he had never met young Charlise, but was left “heartbroken” by her death:<br />“Absolutely heartbroken. It‘s a tragedy. I’d never met her, so there you go.<br />"I‘m a father... I hope you never have to go through circumstances like these.”<br />Ms Mutten lost custody of Charlise in 2018 while she was serving a minimum of two years two months for dangerous driving causing death while high on ice.</p>

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Father’s fury over Charlise Mutten’s fate

<p><em>Image: Facebook</em></p> <p>The biological father of missing girl, Charlise Mutten, whose body was found inside a barrel in NSW’s Blue Mountains overnight has paid tribute to his “beautiful” daughter.</p> <p>The 9-year-old was holidaying with her mother Kallista Mutten and stepfather Justin Laurens Stein at a wedding estate in Mt Wilson when she was reported missing at 8:20 am on Friday.</p> <p>Stein, the fiance of Ms Mutten, has since been charged with her murder.</p> <p>Her biological father spoke out about the situation in a Facebook post earlier on Wednesday.</p> <p>“Goodbye you beautiful little girl. I love you so much. I miss you every day! You have captured the hearts of the nation and the world, and now those hearts are breaking, with mine,” he wrote.</p> <p>“This doesn’t happen! Kids need to be safe. What is wrong with you people????</p> <p>“We will get the answers for you baby, and we will honour you properly. This is not the end of you or your story.”</p> <p>Police, SES and RFS crews spent the past five days searching bushland around the multimillion-dollar Wildenstein wedding venue, where the girl was staying with her mum and her mum’s fiance.</p> <p>Charlise usually lives with her grandmother in Coolangatta, Queensland, but was spending two weeks with her mother during the school holidays. According to acting Commissioner Webb said the cause of the child’s death is yet to be determined and the investigation remains ongoing.</p> <p>“The search will remain ongoing to look for any clues to help us identify the cause of the death,” she said.</p> <p>“I encourage people to come forward with information. There are still many elements of this investigation that we have to work through to determine exactly what happened from the time the young girl was reported missing up until last night when those remains were found.”</p> <p>Deputy Commissioner Dave Hudson said while investigators are still uncertain of exactly what happened, they were “certain” about a number of facts, sharing that police have alleged the accused placed her body in the barrel.</p> <p>"Things will unravel over the next week or so to find a cause of death, the purpose for a death, and try and identify exactly what happened so that the remaining family have some comfort in that,” he told reporters.</p> <p>He said the investigation is ongoing and that there is no evidence to support anything other than that the accused acted alone.</p>

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“Devastated”: More details released on Charlise Mutten as community mourns

<p>The Gold Coast community is in mourning following the death of nine-year-old Charlise Mutten, who was allegedly murdered while staying in NSW's Blue Mountains on a family holiday.</p> <p>Charlise lived with her grandmother in the border town of Coolangatta, and attended the nearby Tweed Heads Public School.</p> <p>The school's Facebook page posted a tribute to Charlise, saying the school community is "absolutely devastated" to hear of her passing.</p> <p>The statement said, "<span>Charlise was a much loved member of our school who brightened all our days, every day."</span></p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Ftweedheadspublicschool%2Fposts%2F339127968218848&amp;show_text=true&amp;width=500" width="500" height="767" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="true" allow="autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; picture-in-picture; web-share"></iframe></p> <p><span>Floral tributes have begun to appear near the school, where Charlise was due to return next week after the holidays. </span></p> <p><span>The school has also organised a candlelight vigil on the school grounds to honour the nine-year-old, as police continue their investigation into her death. </span></p> <p><span>A man was arrested in relation to Charlise's disappearance on Tuesday night, and is due to appear in court late on Wednesday afternoon. </span></p> <p><span>The partner of Charlise's mother Kallista Mutten <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-01-19/man-charged-with-murder-over-missing-9yo-girl-in-blue-mountains/100765502">was arrested</a> in Sydney's Surry Hills, after police found the body of a child was found in a barrel near the Colo River, about an hour from the Blue Mountains. </span></p> <p><span>The child's body has yet to be formally identified, but NSW Police say the remains are consistent with Charlise Mutten. </span></p> <p><em>Image credits: Facebook / NSW Police</em></p>

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Man charged with murder of missing 9-year-old

<p><em>Image: NSW Police </em></p> <p>A man has been charged with murder after nine-year-old Charlise Mutten disappeared from the Blue Mountains last Thursday.</p> <p>Police have arrested a 32-year-old at a unit in Surry Hills, in central Sydney, at about 8:30 pm on Tuesday evening, and he is due to appear in Central Local Court late on Wednesday.</p> <p>NSW Police established Strike Force Buena to investigate Charlise's disappearance.</p> <p>Last Friday morning she was reported missing, officers last night carried out a search at Colo River, about an hour from the Blue Mountains. It is unclear if anything was found.</p> <p>The young girl was a student from Tweed Heads Public School, who lived with her grandmother in Coolangatta, Queensland. She was holidaying in the Blue Mountains with her mother, Kallista Mutten.</p> <p>The pair were staying at a wedding and function venue when she disappeared last Thursday afternoon. Ms Mutten reported her daughter missing the next morning but police haven't revealed whether she was formally interviewed since she was hospitalised for a medical condition.</p> <p>NSW homicide detectives joined the investigation on Monday. Volunteers helping with the search were instructed to call out Charlise's name loudly and told to flag any evidence with police before touching it.</p> <p>They were also told to search for anything out of the ordinary including footprints or bike tracks. A large-scale search had been underway in the area since late last week, with a hundred emergency services staff on the ground and in the air.</p> <p>Police divers spent hours searching the Hawkesbury River in Windsor, with Rural Fire Service (RFS) volunteers also joined the search.</p> <p>On Monday morning police searched a cubby house on a neighbouring property but found nothing.</p>

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Vital clue emerges in search for missing nine-year-old

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Five days into their search for missing nine-year-old Charlise Mutten, police have received a vital clue from witnesses.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Police and volunteers have continued to search bushland in the NSW Blue Mountains for signs of the girl, while droves of detectives searched for clues around the Mount Wilson estate where she was last seen.</span></p> <p><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.police.nsw.gov.au/news/news_article?sq_content_src=%2BdXJsPWh0dHBzJTNBJTJGJTJGZWJpenByZC5wb2xpY2UubnN3Lmdvdi5hdSUyRm1lZGlhJTJGOTk1OTYuaHRtbCZhbGw9MQ%3D%3D" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Officers</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> from local police, Police Rescue, the Dog Unit and PolAir are also involved in the search efforts, with assistance from the State Emergency Service (SES), Rural Fire Service (RFS), and NSW Ambulance.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">A large scale coordinated search operation continues in the Blue Mountains. Charlise was last seen wearing a pink top w/ a round neck collar, black skirt &amp; pink Nike thongs. <br /><br />Anyone with info regarding the whereabouts of Charlise should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. <a href="https://t.co/JHtK9Nsgsb">https://t.co/JHtK9Nsgsb</a></p> — NSW Police Force (@nswpolice) <a href="https://twitter.com/nswpolice/status/1482132460527886343?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 14, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">On Monday, neighbours provided </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.9news.com.au/national/blue-mountains-missing-girl-charlise-mutten-police-new-south-wales/cbeb653e-c0da-44f4-ac10-80421b64c2fc" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">new information</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> about events prior to the reporting of Charlise’s disappearance on Friday, telling police they saw a car driving through the gates of the property at 4.30am.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Charlise’s mother Kallista told police her daughter had disappeared on Thursday, but didn’t make a report until Friday morning.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Her fiance Justin Stein then spent several hours speaking to police at Penrith on Friday afternoon, with his car being towed while he was at the station.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Over the weekend, police seized a white boat from the Mount Wilson property where Charlise was last spotted, before divers searched the Hawkesbury River at Windsor on Sunday.</span></p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height:281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7846882/mutten.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/fc3a0795d42b4d32bb85138db1553c25" /></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Divers searched the Hawkesbury River for signs of nine-year-old Charlise Mutten, who has been missing since Thursday, January 13. Image: 9News</span></em></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Monday’s search saw crews of volunteers trek across hundreds of kilometres, with NSW Rural Fire Service commander Peter Bennet saying one crew walked 10 kilometres across rough terrain.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“It’s very rough terrain out here with canyons,” he said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Officers from the Homicide Squad are also heavily involved, though their investigations have been made difficult by conflicting accounts.</span></p> <p><img style="width: 419.46308724832215px; height:500px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7846881/fjc1b-qacachmk4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/b998ff4eb1954831b0b62406200e7c72" /></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Charlise is described as being of Caucasian appearance, between 130 and 140cm tall, and has brown hair and brown eyes. Image: NSW Police (Twitter)</span></em></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Acting Superintendent John Nelson said police were working closely with Charlise’s family, including her mother.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“For any parent, it’s a very distressing scenario,” he said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“She is quite distressed and we are providing her with support.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Charlise was last seen wearing a pink top with a round neck collar, a black knee-length skirt, and pink Nike thongs.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Police are urging anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.</span></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Image: NSW Police (Twitter)</span></em></p>

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Manhunt after tragic death from random stabbing attack

<p dir="ltr">A 24-year-old was killed in what police describe as a random stabbing attack while working at a high-end furniture store last Thursday.</p> <p dir="ltr">Brianna Kupfer, a UCLA student, was working at Croft House in Los Angeles when she was stabbed by who police believe to be a homeless man. The suspect stabbed her before fleeing through the back door and down an alley.</p> <p dir="ltr">A customer found Brianna 20 minutes later, and she was pronounced dead on the scene soon after.</p> <p dir="ltr">Police said of the incident, “Detectives have determined the suspect was not known to the victim and [it] was a random walk into the store. The suspect attacked the victim with a knife and fled the scene through the back door.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Dr Jennifer Botelho, who owns a chiropractic practice next door, told CBS LA the attack was “horrifying”, saying, “It’s horrible. She’s such a young girl. … We feel so horrible for Brianna’s family, and hope we can catch this guy.”</p> <p dir="ltr">She added that the suspect visited her business shortly before the attack. “He came in and asked a couple of questions: ‘Do you do orthopaedics here?’ What kind of care we provide, and then he left. So he was just here for a few minutes,” Dr Botelho said.</p> <p dir="ltr">Ms Kupfer’s father told CBS she was “loved by all”. She had been studying architectural design at UCLA and was working at Croft House as a consultant.</p> <p dir="ltr">Police are still searching for the suspect.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Facebook</em></p>

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“Proud of my heritage”: Barty’s emotional speech

<p><em>Image: 9News</em></p> <p>Former tennis star turned commentator Jelena Dokic became emotional and teared up as she spoke to Ash Barty for her on-court interview after defeating Ukrainian qualifier Lesia Tsurenko 6-0 6-1 in just 54 minutes.</p> <p>Much like the rest of the country, Dokic is clearly a big-time Barty supporter, as she found it unmistakably difficult to keep her composure as she chatted on-mic with the superstar on Centre Court after her win, where she immediately recalled another of Barty's victories.</p> <p>“I want to first congratulate you on your Wimbledon win. I think I speak — not I think, I’m sure — I speak for everyone here, everyone in Australia, around the world, particularly myself — thank you,” Dokic said.</p> <p>“You gave us so much joy watching that last year. You made us so proud. I get goosebumps right now. I just want to hug you but I can’t.</p> <p>“There are no words to describe what you’ve done so thankyou for that.</p> <p>“Now I’m going to lose all my questions.”</p> <p>Then it was Barty's turn to speak, as she talked about her Indigenous heritage while three young fans waved the Australian Aboriginal flag from the stands.</p> <p>“I think I’m my most comfortable self when I’m out on the court … I’m a very, very proud Indigenous woman. I love my heritage, I love to celebrate my heritage,” she said.</p> <p>“It’s what connects me to all of you here today. It’s what connects me to the land.”</p> <p>The exchange melted hearts. Tennis writer Prajwal Hegde tweeted: “Jelena Dokic’s on-court interview of Ash Barty — Wimbledon, Indigenous heritage, expression — was outstanding. The world No. 1 is Australia’s and is much loved.”</p> <p>It’s not the first time Dokic has welled up speaking about Barty. After the 25-year-old won Wimbledon last year, Dokic became emotional on live TV as she praised the role the Queenslander’s parents have played in raising her to become such an admirable role model.</p> <p>“I just want to get this out before I fall apart. So give me 15 seconds,” Dokic told Nine in July.</p> <p>“I want to give a shout out to her parents, obviously Josie and Rob, because people underestimate the importance of family. She talks about that all the time.</p> <p>“And as someone who didn’t have that support, it is so important. This will set an example for parents in Australia and around the world, not just how to raise a champion but a genuinely wonderful human being."</p> <p>“This is how you support them. You don’t pressure them, you’re there for them and this is why she is there, so big shout out to them, well done.”</p>

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Has Novak's deportation ruined Australia's global reputation?

<p>The world has turned its attention to the Australian government's handling of Novak Djokovic and his refusal to get vaccinated, in order to compete in the Australian Open. </p> <p>As the tennis champion was <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/news/news/djokovic-escorted-out-of-australia">deported from Melbourne</a> on Monday morning, many spectators of the saga have drawn attention to the Morrison Government's strict border policies. </p> <p>Greg Barns from the Australian Lawyers Alliance said it was “dangerous” and “Orwellian” and “deeply troubling in a society supposedly committed to freedom of speech and freedom of thought”.</p> <p>However, despite the <a rel="noopener" href="https://oversixty.com.au/news/news/serbia-s-reaction-to-djokovic-deportation" target="_blank">growing outrage</a> in Novak's native Serbia, the notion that the tennis player's deportation has harmed Australia's international reputation is a lie Aussie's should not have to face.</p> <p>Readers of international publications such as the New York Times, the BBC and NBC News have all celebrated the decision made by Immigration Minister Alex Hawke to cancel Novak's visa and uphold the strong Australian borders. </p> <p>The Immigration Minister's decision to cancel the visa was supported by the Federal Court of Australia, preventing the tennis champion from competing in the Australian Open. </p> <p>“I am so glad this happened! Australia has worked very hard to keep its citizens safe! Kudos to them,” one commenter wrote on a Times story.</p> <p>“Australia has every single right to enforce their rules and laws, even on celebrities. Get vaccinated,” another wrote.</p> <p>When the BBC shared the news of his deportation on Facebook, the majority of the comments were in support of the government's decision. </p> <p>“Glad they stood their ground, in the end of the day Novak is just another human who should obey the rules,” one person wrote.</p> <div id="ad-block-4x4-1" class="w_unruly ad-block ad-custom unruly_insert_native_ad_here" data-type="unruly" data-ad-size="4x4" data-device-type="web" data-ad-tar="pos=1" data-ad-pos="1" data-google-query-id="CMaTzZ31t_UCFflCnQkdIy4Mow"> <div id="ad-block-2x2-1" data-google-query-id="CLnHxqT1t_UCFZCNjwodfvoFlg"> <div id="" class="story-content tg-tlc-storybody"> <p>Others agreed, writing, “Well done Australia for doing the right thing. You proved once again that you don’t pander to those who try to cheat and lie.</p> <p>“They’ve done the right thing by their citizens, who have had to live under restrictions (like many of us) for some time now. So someone blatantly lying to avoid the rules isn’t OK. He should’ve done the decent things and gone home days ago.”</p> <p>Australian journalist <span>Quentin Dempster wrote that the Morrison Government had no choice to deport Novak, given Australia's rising case numbers and hospitalisations. </span></p> <p><span>“This is a public health crisis,” he wrote on Twitter. “In a democracy free speech also comes with an ethical responsibility not to mislead or incite mass harm. Anti-vaxxers are doing just that. ICUs are clogged, people are dying.”</span></p> <p><span>Djokovic left Australia on a flight to Dubai on Sunday night after the full bench of the Federal Court of Australia ruled unanimously to kick him out of the country. </span></p> <p><span>Due to the visa restrictions, the world number one champion is banned from entering Australia for three years. </span></p> <p><span>Prime Minister Scott Morrison told Ben Fordham on 2GB on Monday that Novak "didn't have" a valid exemption to enter Australia unvaccinated. </span></p> <p>“He was wrong,’’ Mr Morrison said. “As simple as that. “He didn’t have one and that is the bottom line to that.</p> <p>“But the idea that someone could come and not follow those rules was just not on.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> </div> </div> </div>

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Serbia's reaction to Djokovic deportation

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Anger has grown in Serbia after Novak Djokovic’s visa was cancelled for a second time, with the country’s President claiming the Australian government has “humiliated” itself.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Djokovic’s legal bid to overturn the cancellation of his visa once again was shot down on Sunday, after three federal judges upheld the decision on public order grounds.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The World No.1 was </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://oversixty.co.nz/news/news/djokovic-escorted-out-of-australia" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">ordered to leave the country</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, departing from Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport late on Sunday night with a retinue of aids and officials. The Emirates flight EK409 to Dubai took off at 10.51pm local time, according to an AFP reporter on board.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Srdjan Djokovic, the tennis champion’s father, took to Instagram with claims Djokovic was subject to an “assassination attempt”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The assassination attempt on the best sportsman in the world is over, 50 bullets to Novak’s chest. See you in Paris,” he wrote.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Meanwhile in Belgrade, Serbia 😍 Home country is waiting for its hero.<br /><br />Source: Srdjan Djokovic, IG <a href="https://twitter.com/NovakFanClub?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NovakFanClub</a> <a href="https://t.co/snC0ebfBPq">pic.twitter.com/snC0ebfBPq</a></p> — Yerik_nolefamkz 🇰🇿 (@yerikilyassov) <a href="https://twitter.com/yerikilyassov/status/1482802376549576708?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 16, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Serbian President Aleksander Vučić also shared his criticism over Djokovic’s treatment, saying the latest hearing was “a farce with a lot of lies”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“They think that they humiliated Djokovic with this 10-day harassment, and they actually humiliated themselves,” he told reporters on Sunday. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Djokovic can return to his country with his head held high.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“If you said that the one who was not vaccinated has no right to enter, Novak would not come or would be vaccinated.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Djokovic was granted a “medical exemption” by organisers of the Australian Open based on his positive PCR test results from December.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">However, organisers had previously been warned that infection with COVID-19 would be insufficient proof for a player to be unvaccinated and allowed in the country, prompting Djokovic’s visa to be cancelled the morning after he arrived in Melbourne on January 5.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The decision saw Djokovic stay at a hotel housing immigrants in detention for several days, before his visa was returned to him following a successful appeal at the Federal Circuit Court.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Despite his legal victory, Immigration Minister Alex Hawke used his personal powers to cancel Djokovic’s visa for a second time, prompting the tennis star to appeal the decision again in federal court.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">I welcome today’s unanimous decision by the Full Federal Court of Australia, upholding my decision to exercise my power under the Migration Act to cancel Mr Novak Djokovic’s visa in the public interest. <br /><br />I can confirm that Mr Djokovic has now departed Australia. <a href="https://t.co/8CapwFeDCS">pic.twitter.com/8CapwFeDCS</a></p> — Alex Hawke MP (@AlexHawkeMP) <a href="https://twitter.com/AlexHawkeMP/status/1482683424720945152?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 16, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mr Vučić reportedly told the BBC that the relationship between Australia and Serbia would need work in order to improve, insisting that the saga was about “truth and justice, not just Djokovic”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“You were saying medical exemptions and medical exemptions and he came there with a medical exemption proposal and then you were mistreating him for 10 days,” he told the BBC.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Why did you do it? And then doing that witches’ hunt campaign against him, that is something that no one can understand.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabić also weighed in, describing the decision as “scandalous”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I am disappointed and I think it has shown how the rule of law functions in some other countries, i.e. how it doesn’t function,” she told Belgrade’s Beta News Agency, according to a CNN translation.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;"><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/tennis/novak-djokovic-deportation-sparks-outrage-around-the-world-as-his-father-slams-assassination-attempt/news-story/edcb04ad8f9b86ef4e1772b7ee052606" target="_blank">In a statement</a> posted online, the Serbian Olympic Committee said they believed “Novak came out as the winner again” despite his deportation.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“We are proud of Novak Djokovic and the way he coped with these extremely difficult and unpleasant circumstances. Despite this scandalous decision, we believe Novak came out as the winner again,” they said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Djokovic’s family also spoke out, sharing their disappointment in a statement published by local media.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“We are very disappointed by a federal court ruling and the fact that Novak has to leave Australia,” the family said in the statement.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“These are difficult moments, notably for Novak, but what we all have to do - namely us, his family - is to give him support more than ever.”</span></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Image: Getty Images</span></em></p>

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Djokovic escorted out of Australia

<p><em>Images: Getty </em></p> <p>An “extremely disappointed” Novak Djokovic has been deported from Australia after last-ditch efforts to challenge a decision to cancel his visa failed.</p> <p>The World No.1 was seen being escorted by Australian Federal Police officers onto an Emirates flight to Dubai which left Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport at 10:30 on Sunday night.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7846842/new-project-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/5c3b8412f9ea44809da47b413d370bcd" /></p> <p>The dramatic moment brings to an end an 11-day saga that captured the attention of the world and threw the Australian Open into chaos.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7846841/new-project.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/1b4e5e9c88234743820b896faa6a0664" /></p> <p>The grand slam starts today without Djokovic, who is at risk of losing his world No.1 ranking to either Daniil Medvedev or Alexander Zverev should one of them win the tournament.</p> <p>Djokvoic had promised he would leave the country as soon as possible in a statement released after a three-judge panel of the Federal Court ruled unanimously against him.</p> <p>“I am extremely disappointed with the Court ruling,” Djokovic wrote on Sunday.</p> <p>“I respect the Court’s ruling and I will cooperate with the relevant authorities in relation to my departure from the country.</p> <p>“I am uncomfortable that the focus of the past weeks has been on me and I hope that we can all now focus on the game and tournament I love.”</p> <p>A three-judge panel ruled unanimously against Djokovic in a full court judicial review of Immigration<br />Minister Alex Hawke’s decision to cancel his visa.</p> <p>The 34-year-old, who now also faces a potential three-year ban on re-entering Australia, was ordered to pay all legal costs incurred by the government. The judges did not provide reasons for their decisions but said they would do so in the coming days.</p> <p>The decision came after Immigration Minister Alex Hawke had cancelled Djokovic’s visa for a<br />second time on Friday, citing a risk to public health and the chance the unvaccinated star’s presence in Australia could excite anti-vaccination sentiment.</p> <p>“Australia’s strong border protection policies have kept us safe during the pandemic,” Mr Hawke said in a statement after the court decision.</p> <p>“Strong border protection policies are also fundamental to safe-guarding Australia’s social cohesion which continues to strengthen despite the pandemic.”</p> <p>Chief Justice James Allsop said the court ruling was based on the lawfulness and legality of the minister’s decision in the context of the rounds of appeal lodged by Djokovic’s legal team.</p> <p>“It is no part of the function of the court to decide upon the merits or wisdom of the decision,” he explained.</p> <p>Under Australia’s Migration Act, certain deported people are unable to be granted a visa while offshore for a period of three years, meaning Djokovic could be barred from playing in the 2023 and 2024 Australian Opens as well.</p> <p>Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews told<span> </span><em>Sunrise</em><span> </span>the harsh penalty can be waived in certain situations, including compelling circumstances that affect the interests of Australia, or compassionate circumstances that affect the interests of an Australian citizen or permanent resident.</p>

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New twist for Novak the Diplomat

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">As the ever-evolving saga surrounding Novak Djokovic’s future in Australia continues, a new detail has emerged that could allow him to stay.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The World No.1 holds a diplomatic passport from the Republic of Serbia, which his country says should ensure “adequate treatment” of the athlete.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Serbian Embassy </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/tennis/novak-djokovic-visa-scandal-latest-could-diplomatic-passport-save-world-no1-in-deportation-threat/news-story/55886ff3da75ef83f543752eb1e8046d" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">confirmed</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> that Djokovic holds a diplomatic passport - which he received for being on the Davis Cup championship team in 2011 - alongside an ordinary Serbian passport.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ivana Isidorovic, a first counsellor at the embassy, told </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Herald Sun</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> that the diplomatic passport should guarantee his “adequate treatment” while abroad, even though Immigration Minister Alex Hawke may still re-cancel his visa.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Djokovic, as our most recognisable representative in the world, is the holder of a diplomatic passport, which should, in diplomatic theory and consular practice, guarantee him adequate treatment when crossing borders,” she said in a statement on Friday.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">However, Kian Bone, a migration legal expert of Macpherson Kelley law firm, said it is expected that Djokovic will not receive any special treatment due to his passport.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“In my view, any claim for diplomatic immunity is only extended to ‘diplomatic agents’ and would not extend to a private citizen of Serbia,” Mr Bone said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">He said diplomatic passport holders were normally required to still apply for the appropriate visa to enter Australia on business - which includes playing in the Australian Open.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">According to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website, “Diplomatic and Official Passports do not confer any special rights or privileges”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Individual countries may confer, at their own discretion, certain rights and privileges to holders of Diplomatic and Official Passports.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Djokovic was granted a temporary activity visa subclass 408, sponsored by Tennis Australia, in order to enter the country last week.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">As the competition’s start date looms, Minister Hawke is still to make a decision regarding Djokovic’s visa.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The Minister is currently considering the matter and the process remains ongoing,” a spokesman for Mr Hawke </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.co.nz/news/news/new-visa-twist-as-more-novak-accusations-emerge" target="_blank"><span style="font-weight: 400;">said on Monday night</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, following the court’s decision to overturn Djokovic’s visa cancellation.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The uncertainty surrounding his fate comes as more of Djokovic’s rivals continue to criticise him and call for his removal from Australia.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">World No.4 Stefanos Tsitsipas said Djokovic had made other tennis players “look like fools” after arriving in Australia unvaccinated, accusing him of putting the competition at risk.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“For sure he has been playing by his own rules,” Tsitsipas said in an interview with Indian broadcaster WION.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“It takes a lot of daring to do and (is) putting the Grand Slam at risk… I don’t think many players would do that.”</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Novak is a great tennis player &amp; one of the all time greats. No doubt. But he’s lied on entry forms, been out in public when he knew he had covid &amp; is now facing legal cases. He’s entitled to not be jabbed but Oz is entitled to throw him out ! Agree ? <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/shambles?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#shambles</a></p> — Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) <a href="https://twitter.com/ShaneWarne/status/1481760362538336256?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 13, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Athletes outside of the tennis world have also weighed in, including cricketer Shane Warne.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Novak is a great tennis player &amp; one of the all time greats,” he wrote on Twitter. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“No doubt. But he’s lied on his entry forms, been out in public when he knew he had covid &amp; is now facing legal cases. He’s entitled not to be jabbed but Oz is entitled to throw him out! Agree?”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Though a decision was expected on Thursday afternoon from Minister Hawke, Djokovic’s future is expected to now be determined on Friday - three days before the Australian Open begins.</span></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Image: Getty Images</span></em></p>

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Novak rumour shut down by Spanish officials

<p dir="ltr">As tennis fans around the world wait to hear if Novak Djokovic will be kicked out of Australia, another country has been pulled into the debacle and forced to dispel rumours.</p> <p dir="ltr">Authorities in Spain have rejected new rumours that they are investigating the tennis champion’s entry into Spain late last year.</p> <p dir="ltr">Novak travelled from his native Serbia to Spain in December, where he began practicing for the Australian Open.</p> <p dir="ltr">Tennis reporter Gaspar Ribeiro Lanca tweeted on Thursday, “Breaking news: COPE reports that the Spanish Government is now investigating whether unvaccinated Novak Djokovic entered the country illegally in late December.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“Since September 20, citizens from Serbia need a vaccine certificate OR a special exemption to enter Spanish territory but so far the authorities say they did not receive any request from Djokovic.”</p> <p dir="ltr">However, cold water has been poured on suggestions Djokovic is under the microscope in Spain, as a spokesperson for Spain’s interior ministry told <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.politico.eu/article/spain-investigating-novak-djokovic-entry-tennis-coronavirus-vaccines/" target="_blank">Politico</a>, “The news is false. Neither the government has ordered it nor is there any police investigation open on the athlete.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Despite these rumours being laid to rest, the tennis reporter’s claims for entry into Spain are accurate, with international travellers needing a valid Covid-19 vaccinate certificate or exemption, as stated by <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/destinations/europe/spain" target="_blank">Smart Traveller</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">Novak is still awaiting his fate for competing in the Australian Open, as Federal Immigration Minister Alex Hawke has yet to make a decision about his visa.</p> <p dir="ltr"><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.theage.com.au/sport/tennis/djokovic-plans-court-appeal-if-minister-decides-to-cancel-visa-20220113-p59o3n.html" target="_blank"><em>The Age </em></a>reports a member of Djokovic’s camp said legal action will immediately be launched if he is ordered to leave the country, even after having his visa cancellation overturned in court on Monday.</p> <p dir="ltr">According to the report, Team Djokovic is hopeful any legal battle over his visa status would be resolved by Sunday, allowing the Serbian to continue to compete in the Australian Open, which starts on Monday, if he is successful.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p>

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Djokovic makes the cut while Barty draws dead

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">After a last-minute delay, Novak Djokovic’s future in the Australian Open seems to be confirmed following the announcement of the draw on Thursday afternoon.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The announcement was pushed until after an update from Prime Minister Scott Morrison, with many expecting a comment on Djokovic’s fate.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Though Minister Alex Hawke still holds the ability to cancel the tennis champion’s visa for a second time, organisers of the Australian Open are treating Djokovic as if he is still going to play.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Top seed and nine-time <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AusOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AusOpen</a> champion 🇷🇸 <a href="https://twitter.com/DjokerNole?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DjokerNole</a> begins his title defence against Miomir Kecmanovic.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AO2022?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AO2022</a> <a href="https://t.co/96MAlHNElG">pic.twitter.com/96MAlHNElG</a></p> — #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) <a href="https://twitter.com/AustralianOpen/status/1481500590681198592?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 13, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The World No. 1 has been drawn against fellow Serbian and World No. 78 Miromir Kecmanovic.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Organisers also announced the draw for the women’s singles, with Ash Barty to begin her Australian Open campaign against a qualifier - meaning she will need to win a pre-tournament competition in order to secure her spot.</span></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Barty Party in Melbourne 🎊 <br /><br />Top seed 🇦🇺 <a href="https://twitter.com/ashbarty?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ashbarty</a> starts her <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AusOpen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AusOpen</a> campaign against a qualifier.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AO2022?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#AO2022</a> <a href="https://t.co/hMDkESm9No">pic.twitter.com/hMDkESm9No</a></p> — #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) <a href="https://twitter.com/AustralianOpen/status/1481497862840012806?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 13, 2022</a></blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The announcement comes while Djokovic’s future in the country hangs in the balance, with a decision from Minister Hawke expected on Thursday.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">When asked about the star’s fate at his press conference, Mr Morrison refused to comment.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"I refer to Minister Hawke's most recent statement and that position hasn't changed," he told reporters on Thursday afternoon.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"These are personal ministerial powers able to be exercised by Minister Hawke and I don't propose to make any further comment at this time."</span></p> <p><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Image: @djokernole (Instagram)</span></em></p>

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