Slavery is a bigger problem now than when it was ‘abolished’ — and it’s happening here

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Slavery. The word conjures images of people in leg irons. Edward Santow We think of the abolitionists who toiled centuries ago in lands far away to abolish this horrific practice. ABC Yet two things should shock us. First, slavery is more common today than when it was “abolished”. In fact, there are more slaves now than at any time in human history. Secondly, our region — the Asia Pacific — is home to about half of the world’s 45.8 million ... Read More »

Talking Point: Prevent crime for a safer society

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Do we care about our community safety or is it that we only want bad behaviour and criminal behaviour punished, no matter what? Grant Herring Do we really understand the real cost of crime and punishment? The Mercury Do we care about the outcomes of imprisonment? These are not simple questions when the complexity of their resolution is steeped in that Anglo-Saxon culture which transported wrongdoers from a nation with jails so overcrowded that prison hulks were deployed. Is imprisonment ... Read More »

Why the government goes easy on corporate crime

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When Robert Mueller was tapped to investigate Russian meddling in last year’s presidential election, white-collar defense attorneys in Washington pumped their fists and readied their invoices. David Dayen New Republic Donald Trump and his inner circle have hit up practically every white-shoe law firm in town: Covington & Burling, Miller & Chevalier, Morgan Lewis, Hogan Lovells, Norton Rose Fulbright. For decades, veteran litigators from these firms have defended everyone from George W. Bush and Jack Abramoff on the right to ... Read More »

Peru legalises medical marijuana in move spurred by mother’s home lab

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Proposal to decriminalise the drug came after police raided a makeshift laboratory where a group of women made cannabis oil for their sick children Dan Collyns The Guardian Lawmakers in Peru have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a bill to legalise medical marijuana, allowing cannabis oil to be locally produced, imported and sold. With a vote of 68-5, Peru’s Congress approved the bill which will be written into law in 60 days, once regulations for producing and selling cannabis have ... Read More »

58 Cold Hard Facts From The Nation That Just Brought You Another 58 ‘Cold Dead Hands’

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If you think the latest horrendous mass shooting in the United States will cause a shocked nation to stop and take stock, then you know very little about the history of American gun culture, or politics. Chris Graham reports New Matilda At least 58 people have died overnight in Las Vegas, Nevada in yet another mass shooting in one of the world’s most violent nations. Perched on the verandah of a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay ... Read More »

1,516 mass shootings in 1,735 days: America’s gun crisis – in one chart

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US gun control The attack at a country music festival in Las Vegas that left at least 58 people dead is the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history – but there were six other mass shootings in America this past week alone. The Guardian No other developed nation comes close to the rate of gun violence in America. Americans own an estimated 265m guns, more than one gun for every adult. Data compiled by the Gun Violence Archive reveals ... Read More »

We can stop hacking and trolls, but it would ruin the internet

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A new way to run the internet would scupper ransomware and hacking, but its authoritarian backers could control everything we do online. By Sally Adee and Carl Miller New Scientist CYBERTERRORISM fears are through the roof. Ransomware is wreaking havoc on corporations, hospitals and individuals. Printers can be hacked to take down the world’s largest websites. Put simply, the internet is a mess. You’re probably familiar with all this hand-wringing. What you might not know is that a solution has ... Read More »

Australian mining company in prosecution spotlight for role in Congo massacre

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The African Commission on Human and People’s Rights has urged the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo to re-open the criminal investigation into the role an Australian company, Anvil Mining, played in a massacre of 70… HRLC In the landmark ruling, the African Commission found the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo responsible for the 2004 massacre in the southeast of the country, but it also highlighted Anvil Mining’s role in supplying logistical support to the… Anvil Mining operated a ... Read More »

Pakistani court removes PM Nawaz Sharif from office in Panama Papers case

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Disqualification from office over corruption allegations is the most serious political ramification yet of 2016 leak Sune Engel Rasmussen The Guardian Pakistan’s supreme court has removed the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, from office in a unanimous verdict over corruption allegations that will further upset the country’s unstable political landscape. The verdict by the five-member court caps a year of political controversy over corruption allegations unleashed by the Pakistani court removes… Read More »

‘Drug pushers in suits’: Why the ACT’s bid to ‘legalise heroin’ failed

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It was the bold idea that began in the ACT Legislative Assembly, rattled the prime minister of the day, and raised the hackles of one of the… Katie Burgess The Canberra Times And almost 20 years since Prime Minister John Howard scuttled a scientific trial into the effectiveness of providing prescription heroin to addicts, former ACT independent MLA Michael Moore believes its time to start the… Mr Moore was the chair of an ACT parliamentary committee on HIV, illegal drugs ... Read More »

Human trafficking victims found dead in Texas truck

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Nine people dead and more than 20 critically injured in what police are calling a horrific case of immigrant smuggling. AlJazeera – News agencies At least nine people died after being crammed into a sweltering tractor-trailer found parked outside a Walmart in the midsummer Texas heat, authorities said on Sunday in what they… The driver was arrested, and nearly 20 others rescued from the rig were hospitalised in dire condition, many with extreme dehydration and… Human trafficking victims… Read More »

Congo’s mining revenue ‘missing’ – Global Witness

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More than 20% of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s mining revenue is being lost due to corruption and mismanagement, a campaign group says. BBC According to a Global Witness report, the money is being distributed through corrupt networks linked to President Joseph Kabila. At least $750m (£580m) has gone missing over the past three years, it says. The government has not commented but has previously denied allegations of corruption in its mining… Congo’s mining revenue… Read More »

Internal crime perpetrating through law firms

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An increasing number of law firms are leaving themselves open to internal crime, despite many stating that pre-employment screening is… Emma Ryan Lawyers Weekly A new report conducted by Lawyers Weekly and InfoTrack surveyed 216 Australian legal professionals to better understand the perceived impact of internal crime as well as the processes law firms have put in place to protect against… Firstly, the survey asked respondents where they see the greatest value in pre-employment… Internal crime perpetrating… Read More »

A health issue, not a crime: it’s time to scrap outdated abortion laws

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Archaic abortion laws are still oppressing women in Australia. We should finally step up to medical developments and social expectations Caroline de Costa Heather Douglas The Guardian On Wednesday the Queensland law reform commission (QLRC) received a reference to consider how Queensland should amend laws relating to termination of pregnancy and remove abortion offences from the criminal code. The QLRC has 12 months to report on how to repeal these archaic Queensland laws dating back to… A health issue… Read More »

Talking Point: Gun law reform soft on crime, hard on owners

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WHEN someone proposes a solution to a problem that does not exist, you can suspect they have an agenda. Carlo Di Falco Mercury The recent mail-out to Tasmania’s 38,000 shooters about the storage of firearms requirements fall into this category. Last year, the Department of Police, Fire and Emergency Management released the regulatory impact statement and draft regulations about the… Talking Point: Gun… Read More »

Mexico’s Worsening War without a Name

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The “war on drugs” has morphed into a new rash of killings in Mexico. Froylán Enciso ICG The deadly violence of increasingly well-organised, business-minded criminal groups risks being aggravated by government inaction, corruption and bombastic U.S. rhetoric – exactly what caused the problem in the first place. Murder rates in Mexico have hit a… Mexico’s Worsening War… Read More »